- docker search java
- search for a docker image (java in this case)
- running a docker image
- docker run -d openjdk
- run detached (-d) the openjdk docker
- docker run -d –name redisHostPort -p 6379:6379 redis:latest
- –name creates a user friendly name for your running docker
- -p <machine host-port:container-port> exposes docker image port in the host port
- redis:latest is the docker image:the version
- docker run -d –name redisDynamic -p 6379 redis:latest
- -p 6379 assigns a random host port
- docker port redisDynamic 6379
- shows to which host ip:port is docker running image redisDynamic’s port 6379 is assigned
- docker run -d –name redisMapped -v /opt/docker/data/redis:/data redis
- -v host-path:docker-path maps a docker path to a host path in order to persist data
- docker run -it ubuntu bash
- -it runs an interactive docker image.
- you can run a specific command on the docker image (bash)
- docker run -d –name my-production-running-app -e NODE_ENV=production -p 3000:3000 my-nodejs-app
- -e VARIABLE=value sets an environment variable in the running container
- docker run -d openjdk
- How to run a command inside a running container
- docker exec -d ubuntu_bash touch /tmp/execWorks
- How to create docker data volumes
- Create a new container to start it afterwards (instead of running it directly) this is useful mainly to create data storage dockers and use them from other images.
- docker create -v /data –name dataContainer ubuntu
- docker run –rm –volumes-from dataContainer ubuntu ls -la /data
- docker cp config.conf dataContainer:/config/
- copies file config.com from the host to the docker container
- to move data containers from one machine to another you can export/import them to .tar
- docker export dataContainer > dataContainer.tar
- docker import dataContainer.tar
- docker import http://example.com/exampleimage.tgz
- How to create a network between containers
- docker network create backend-network
- creates a network to which we can attach containers. Docker sets a dns server in ip 127.0.0.11 and all connected containers use it by docker adding it to resolv.conf on each container
- docker network connect frontend-network redis
- connects a container to a network
- docker network connect –alias db frontend-network2 redis
- –alias <alias_name> creates an alias for the network name
- docker network ls
- shows all networks
- docker network inspect frontend-network
- shows all containers connected to a network and their ip addresses
- docker network disconnect frontend-network redis
- disconnect a container from a network
- docker run -d –name=redis –net=backend-network redis
- launches a redis container linked to the network backend-network.
- docker network create backend-network
- Building a docker image
- docker build -t webserver-image:v1 .
- -t <image name:tag> is used to give a name and version to the image.
- in the . directory you need to create a file called Dockerfile with yaml notation
- echo passwords.txt >> .dockerignore
- all fine names included into file .dockerignore will be ignored when building the image
- echo passwords.txt >> .dockerignore
- FROM nginx:alpine
- uses nginx:alpine as base for this docker image
- COPY . /usr/share/nginx/html
- copies from the host to the image
- FROM node:7-alpine
- RUN mkdir -p /src/app
- RUN’s command inside the docker image
- WORKDIR /src/app
- set the working directory in the docker image
- EXPOSE 3000
- EXPOSEs the port from the docker image to a random port in the host system
- CMD [ “npm”, “start” ]
- runs a command in the docker image you can add parameters as items of the array
- ONBUILD COPY . /usr/src/app
- onbuild commands won’t be executed until the built image is used as a base image
- FROM nginx:alpine
- docker images
- returns a list of images installed in the host system
- docker build -t webserver-image:v1 .
- removing a docker image
- docker container ls -a
- lists all containers (running or not)
- docker container rm < CONTAINER ID>
- removes the container
- docker rmi hello-world
- removes image hello-world
- docker container ls -a
- docker ps
- show docker processes
- docker inspect openjdk
- show details of running docker
- docker logs openjdk
- shows logs for running docker
This month I returned to moneyconf, a yearly meeting of fintech enthusiasts. Apart from a pair of trendy LHoFT sunglasses I came back with a bunch of insights and inspiration to fuel me until next year.
Insights from moneyconf:
- 20 million SME in the USA don’t accept electronic payments today @thefriley @Square CFO
- The finance part of fintech hasn’t been disrupted yet (as opposed to retail) there’s a lot of legacy just signing an nda can take 3months. @thefriley @Square CFO
- “When we work with the banks it is slow going…” @thefriley @Square CFO
- The internet deserves a native currency (bitcoin) cashapp allows to seamlessly buy/sell bitcoin. Fiat has a lot of friction, a lot of value lost in sending money overseas. This shouldn’t be the case. I’m all in to disrupt that. @thefriley @Square CFO
- I believe the way to get great decisions is to have diversity. If everyone agrees, someone is not thinking. Inclusion is needed for diversity to stay. Feminine role models in leadership inspire. Only 5% women in leadership, there is systemic bias @thefriley @Square CFO
- If you only interview women you will be able to find a woman (surely in the whole world there will be one woman for the job) push your hr team to find them. @thefriley @Square CFO
- The internet is broken. It has no digital identity construct. With blockchain we can have identity. Social context can attest they are a citizen. Zug in switzerland is an experiment on cryptovoting @ethereumJoseph Consensys Founder
- Blockchain is a force for universal disintermediation. Intermediaries will be right-sized as to how much value they extract from a transaction. @ethereumJoseph Consensys Founder
- com disintermediation for music. Civil, fake news control. Data storage, heavy conputation, kwh… all is being disintermediated @ethereumJoseph Consensys Founder
- Web 3.0 will bring native digital money, greater security, trusted transactions, decentralised storage, bandwidth, heavy compute… @ethereumJoseph Consensys Founder
- Bullshit sharing economy (uber, lyft, airbnb…) vs. actual sharing economy will happen thanks to ethereum smart contracts with networked business models @ethereumJoseph Consensys Founder
- Siloed infrastructure is moving towards collaborative, distributed infrastructures. Enterprise ethereum alliance has over 500 members building this shared infrastructure @ethereumJoseph Consensys Founder
- We can imagine a dystopian world where we have no privacy. We can imagine a world where privacy is everywhere. Regulators have a big role on this. @JoelKatz Chief Cryptographer at Ripple
- Xrapid is a ripple product which exchanges usd for xrp. Xrp is sent to an exchange that takes mexican pesos. These xrp are then changed for pesos. This is done in under two minutes in a way which is cheaper and faster with current remmitance systems @JoelKatz Chief Cryptographer at Ripple
- Volatility if xrp is lower in two minutes than the mexican peso over two days. @JoelKatz Chief Cryptographer at Ripple
- The real utility of blockchain hasn’t happened yet. This is the reason for the big volatility. @JoelKatz Chief Cryptographer at Ripple
- In 20 years payments will be invisible, inexpensive, and seamlesss. Similar to opening a webpage today @JoelKatz Chief Cryptographer at Ripple
- Utility tokens are an aberration. If you are raising capital it’s a security. I’m surprised it took so long for the SEC to step in. Patrick Byrne @OverstockCEO
- ICOs enable financial inclusion. Access to capital for any enterpreneur in a third world country. This is groundbreaking. @jeffpulver
- It’ll be possible for the underbanked to receive loans peer to peer without a bank Patrick Byrne @OverstockCEO
- Blockchain will bring more chain than the internet did. It’s a bigger disruption than the internet was Patrick Byrne @OverstockCEO
- Formation of capital, central banking, cap markets, identity, supply chains,voting will be disrupted by blockchain. We will be able to give a collapsing economy a central bank as a service. Patrick Byrne @OverstockCEO
- Regulators have good understanding of the blockchain revolution. It’s too late to stop it. In some countries the regulators work for the companies they should regulate. Patrick Byrne @OverstockCEO
- Bitcoin’s been through 6 booms and busts. If you zoom out it doesn’t look like a bubble. There’s more and more widespread, infrastructure is growing. @DavidFBailey CEO at BTC Media
- Bitcoin offers decentralised trust. Censorship resistant. There is an intrinsic value in this. @DavidFBailey CEO at BTC Media
- Bitcoin either is or is not a store of value. If it is the upside is huge. Email is much bigger than the postal+fax industry. If bitcoin is not a store of value the value will be zero. @DavidFBailey CEO at BTC Media
- The bitcoin blockchain is extremely secure. Hacks have happened in the perifery infrastructure. @DavidFBailey CEO at BTC Media
- Usdtether has counterparty risk. If the assets backing it are seized the value would drop. @DavidFBailey CEO at BTC Media
- If the price of bitcoin booms 10x or 100x, more people will spend more money on mining and the energy consumption of the bitcoin blockchain will go from 0.5% of the world consumption to maybe 10%. What then? @DavidFBailey CEO at BTC Media
- Ethereum helps build better business models. This scares incumbents at first. @ethereumJoseph Consensys Founder
- R3 is running out of gas. They built a blockchain-like infrastructure. @ethereumJoseph Consensys Founder
- Master node in dash is a PoW algorithm. We have instant confirmations. Part of the block rewards go to treasury which can be used to pay for development. Stakeholders can vote on how the rewards get used. @fernando Dash CMO
- There is space for many crypto projects. Dash and ethereum can coexist and interoperate. @ethereumJoseph @fernando
- Forks are good, it allows for better systems to compete. @ethereumJoseph Consensys Founder
- Layer two tech (lightning network) has problems of its own. @fernando Dash CMO
- The spark of crypto is still alive and growing thanks to it becoming a reality @fernando Dash CMO
- Switzerland is welcoming for ICOs due to their liberal approach to financial innovation @OlgaFeldmeier Smartvalor CEO
- In the us there is no clarity on ICOs whereas in switzerland the guidelines are clear and they are welcoming. @ShapeShiftCOO
- Different cryptotokens need to be regulated differently we need to understand what they are. @ShapeShiftCOO
- Security dealer licenses, banking licenses, money transfer licenses… the regulator needs to simplify @OlgaFeldmeier Smartvalor CEO
- The business models for crypto are new. The industry needs to self-regulate with oversight from authorities. Regulator needs to empower the industry players. @OlgaFeldmeier Smartvalor CEO
- Digital pictures of cats are not securities. Regulators are struggling to understand how crypto works. @ShapeShiftCOO
- Legacy regulation does not catch the bad actors. They are able to evade it anyway. It impedes the good actors and does not allow for fast advance. @ShapeShiftCOO
- $300bn market cap on ICO. Bitcoin 38%. @edithyeung Partner at 500Startups
- 10 Things to Look for in a Token Project @edithyeung Partner at 500Startups
- Avalanche family. New consensus protocol that came out a month ago. Uses montecarlo polling sufficient times for the probability of an incorrect output is insignificant. @el33th4xor Professor at Cornell University
- Bitcoin solves the problem of making uncensorable inconfiscable money @ToneVays Derivatives Trader.
- fmwill have it’s own crypto. If you have a question fos someone you can offer a payment in crypto in exchange for a response @askfmio
- Bitstamp found a regulatory home in luxembourg @nejc_kodric Bitstamp CEO
- We started targeting banks. But we realised they were moving too slow so we had to change the strategy. @marcusswanepoel Luno CEO
- The biggest struggle is bridging the legacy banking system with the crypto system. Banks are slow and sometimes hostile. @bitstamp @nejc_kodric Bitstamp CEO
- In 1980s we went from open outcry markets to electronic markets. Reducing friction and increasing velocity. Next step is the digital age of securities making it 24/7/365 worldwide. Get rid of paper certificates into the blockchain. Tokenize real assets. @APompliano Founder at Morgan Creek Digital Assets
- In the future we’ll say: “I bought a share of apple”. The blockchain settlement part will be transparent. @APompliano Founder at Morgan Creek Digital Assets
- Ledger is working on Ledgerboard saas solution for enterprise investors who want to manage cryptocurrencies. @EricLarch Ledger CEO
- PSD2 is making banks reassess their technical infrastructure. There is an opportunity there. Cabannes @SocieteGenerale Deputy CEO
- Psd2 gave banks a kick in the butt. Anyone can come along and access your clients data. This gave banks a wake up call and pushed them to colllaborate with the fintech echosystem @RWandhofer Global Head of Regulatory Strategy at Citigroup
- Psd2 increases the surface open to hacker attack. Cabannes @SocieteGenerale Deputy CEO
- Psd2 opens the opportunity for collaboration/acquisition of fintechs. This brings innovation to banks. Cabannes @SocieteGenerale Deputy CEO
- Banks were reticent to psd2. Now it’s a given so it has been accepted. Psd2 will evolve banking into platforms. There will be competition with winners and losers. This will create a new ecosystem. @deBrouwerEBF Chief Policy Officer at European Banking Federation
- Banks have to move from years long IT projects to months, weeks, or even days. Cabannes @SocieteGenerale Deputy CEO
- We have to digitize, cleanse, secure, redesign data in big banks @RWandhofer Global Head of Regulatory Strategy at Citigroup
- Non-cash payments are growing 82% in india in 2018. India has tripled digital payments in the last three years. @ceouaeexchange CEO at UAE exchange
- Millenials care about the experience. Cashless is more intuitive for them. @ceouaeexchange CEO at UAE exchange
- In africa most people have cellphones, and few have bank accounts. @ceouaeexchange CEO at UAE exchange
- Security issues could pose threats towards cashless societies. Nathan Gill @Verifone Head of Solutions
- The simple things that can scale are the things that will proliferate. Nfc works, qr code works. Retina scanning, vein scanning are sexy, but they are more complex. Nathan Gill @Verifone Head of Solutions
- Bitcoin fulfills aristotle’s 4 conditions for sound money @maxkeiser CIO Heisenberg Capital
- The banking system as we know it will not exist in the next 10-50 years. @maxkeiser CIO Heisenberg Capital
- Ireland aspires to be the main tech hub for europe. @campaignforleo Prime minister of Ireland
- This year, the Irish central bank will start a fintech innovation hub. @campaignforleo Prime minister of Ireland
- Credit karma has 80 million users in usa. Helping millenials find financial instruments @kennethlin Founder of Credit Karma
- Through autonomous finance we could give a way for financially illiterate people to make better financial decisions. Similar to the gps helping us reach our destination. @kennethlin Founder of Credit Karma
- Worldremit helps the unbanked send and receive money via mobile phone @Ismail_WR Worldremit CEO
- 3bn (half of the world) people are invisible to the global financial system. Poor farmers get paid once a year with the harvest and don’t have a way to safely store their money. They need to walk for miles to pay an utility bill to keep the lights on @MichaelSchlein Accion CEO
- We use financial tools every day. The underbanked live in a cash world and don’t have access to these tools. @MichaelSchlein Accion CEO
- World bank’s report on financial inclusion focuses in bank accounts. There are many underbanked people which created an account and use it less than once a year (they received a government grant and cashed it out, they have an account but don’t use it) @MichaelSchlein Accion CEO
- Blockchain can make a difference for cheap remittances without going through the slow and expensive bank based system @Ismail_WR Worldremit CEO
- Blockchain is a fundamental new layer to the internet. It enables value exchange, governance and trust. Every fiduciary and record keeping industry will be affected by it. @jerallaire Circle CEO
- Accounting. Insurance. Corporate and commercial law. Voting and governance. Record keeping. These will be transformed by the blockchain. @jerallaire Circle CEO
- Crypto tokens can be currencies, commodities, and securities. @jerallaire Circle CEO
- Stablecoins tether, usd coin, maker, basis can enable settlement without volatility risk @jerallaire Circle CEO
- Crypto securities represent some rules based financial contract. @jerallaire Circle CEO
- We are at the start of a “tokenisation of everything”. Bonds, fiat currency, insurance contracts, property tokens (land, houses, cars), decision tokens (votes, governance) @jerallaire Circle CEO
- To realise the tokenisation of everything we need: 1) mature and scalable public blockchains. 2) fiat backed stablecoins. 3) mature marketplaces 4) regulatory clarity @jerallaire Circle CEO
- Fiat stablecoins are mandatory for this to work. We need to control the volatility. @jerallaire Circle CEO
- Sharing value globally in the same way we can share information. Cheap. Fast. Easy. Fundamental economic integration. @jerallaire Circle CEO
- In China a lot of merchants don’t accept cash any more. Visa, wechat, alipay, but no cash. @AlainFalys Chairman Yoyo Wallet
- I just came back from china. I was at a restaurant and some people just stood up and left, some walked to the cashier, some needed the waiter to charge. Everyone paying with the mobile phone. @AlainFalys Chairman Yoyo Wallet
- We believe voice is the next frontier. Today 50bn/month searches are done by voice. Voice enables a natural experience. Giulio Montemagno. Director Europe @amazonpay
- Mobile topping can be done worldwide in an unregulated way. I can send mobile balance to any phone in the world. This is a workaround for remittances. @MRding Executive Chairman at Ding
- Remittances are unfairly expensive. @cwinesLondon Founder at WorldRemit
- Gdpr and blockchain don’t work together at all. Blockchain is immutable while gdpr requires user data to allow to be deleted. @DariaRippingale CEO at billpro
- Customer demand for cryprocurrency trading has massively exploded. @yoniassia CEO at eToro
- Traditional markets are too regulated with too many entry barriers. Crypto markets are the wild west, trial and error. @yoniassia CEO at eToro
- You can’t expect to make 40x on all of your investments, right? But you are 27 so you do @yoniassia CEO at eToro
- I’m optimistic. In 20 years any financial asset and central bank money will be tokenised in a blockchain. @yoniassia CEO at eToro
- Bitcoin has the brand awareness of cocacola. @yoniassia CEO at eToro
- Compliance protects the business to avoid risk. Learn to love the audits. Create a team that focuses on responding to audit and loves it. Jacqueline Molnar, Chief Compliance Officer at @WesternUnion
- Fintech in europe is very exciting. In europe there is a lot of interest to increase the 5% of online payments. @chughesjohnson COO at Stripe
- Governments want to enable startups because they will enable job creation and GDP growth. @chughesjohnson COO at Stripe
- Stripe wants to level the playing field allowing any startup to send and receive cross border payments. @chughesjohnson COO at Stripe
- Availability of developer resources is according to nielsen the biggest constraint for companies. @chughesjohnson COO at Stripe
- Payments is extremely local. Regulation, banking, tradition … Stripe is trying to make it uniform globally for startups to sell worldwide seamlessly @chughesjohnson COO at Stripe
- 1) find your product and focus on it full speed 2) If you don’t hire the right talent your company will not grow. 3) tempo. Keep the speed as you grow. @chughesjohnson COO at Stripe
- The developer is increasingly the decision maker. The technical decisions you take are integral to your business strategy. Developers should be at the decision making table. If you treat them as a service they will leave. @chughesjohnson COO at Stripe
- Before wechatpay and alipay people in china has no credit card. These services leapfrogged and today it’s difficult to be able to pay with cash in china. @edithyeung Partner at 500Startups
- Chinese people leave china for hongkong, malta, japan, san francisco… to avoid chinese regulatory blocking and continue their blockchain projects. @edithyeung Partner at 500Startups
- We have a process we follow whenever we open up in a new country. If the process does not work we tweak it. We are hungry. @NStoronsky CEO at Revolut.
Every year late July I attend the Euskal encounter. A meeting of over 8,000 computer enthusiasts who gather to share their passion. For me this is an opportunity to catch up with old friends and discuss our vision of the state of the industry and the future to come. I have seen it evolve over 25 years from the early days when it was a meeting of amiga demoscene fans to today where we have gigabit access to the internet, drone races and training of 10 year old future engineers who are helped to work together to build electric karts and race them.
Every year I obtain a few wisdom pearls that I take back with me and fuel my inspiration. These are the highlights I take with me this time as exciting material for investigation:
- Bime is a competitor to Tableau, Qlik, microsoft powerBI, and gooddata in the Business Intelligence space. Setting up a demo is easy and free, and it looks like a powerful front end for end user data analysis.
- Tmux is a program which allows you to, just opening one ssh connection to a linux server, split this terminal in as many windows as you like, allowing to split your workspace very flexibly and move fast thanks to keyboard shortcuts. It has similarities with screen.
- Terraform allows you to automatically provision your architecture in the cloud. My good friend @ibannieto gave a demo on this for beginners and showed us how easy it is to provision from scratch several machines in the Amazon, Microsoft or Google clouds and how to deploy software on these machines automagically with just a few lines of code.
- Awesome is a super lightweight linux window manager that allows to organise your desktop with very powerful keyboard shortcuts and taking up very litte resources. This is ideal when you are running linux on a 10 year old laptop with no resources to spare, as is my case in this occasion.
- Google Data Flows is a google ETL service which can manage your data integration needs for real time and batch integration capable of managing massive amounts of data.
- Data lakes are a way of storing massive amounts of data without the need for too much structure, allowing for future querying of this data. Hadoop is a data lake which allows for these massive amounts of data distributed amongst thousands of machines to be queried using simple programming models.
- Fusion4energy is an exciting european project aiming to bring sustainable energy to the world by using nuclear fusion. Different to nuclear fision, fusion would cause no nuclear residue and would be a revolutionary source of clean energy. Fusion has already been achieved producing Megawatts of energy, the only problem being that it produced less energy than it consumed.
- Reveal is a very cool software to create impacting presentations using html. It allows to integrate gifs, video, dynamic content, in a way that microsoft powerpoint can’t.
- Drone racing was one of the new surprises of this year’s euskal encounter. The drivers wear headsets with which they see what their flying drone sees and they race at vertiginous speeds through an obstacle race aiming to be the fastest without crashing.
- kidskitcar.org was for me the most inspiring of all. Maybe it’s due to my parenthood, but I was moved seeing the different teams of 10 year olds building their electric karts together. I find it crucial to inspire the future generations to take up the challenges of engineering. This way allows them to start easy and small in a fun and collaborative way.
Mining ethereum is an easy 5 step process:
- Get a computer with a powerful GPU or two
- Get an ethereum wallet here
- Download geth from here and run it like this in a cmd window (because if you have a powerful GPU or two you use it for gaming, hence you have a windows machine)
- geth.exe -rpc
- Download ethminer from here and run it like this in different cmd window
- ethminer.exe -G
- The -G parameter instructs ethminer to use your GPU instead of your CPU, which will be orders of magnitude faster at mining.
- You are set, you should see something like this
Now for the bad part. I have two GTX 1080 TI and I am getting around 62 MH/s. This means my computer is capable of taking the Ethereum block we are trying to solve, add it a random string and calculate the hash of it to see if the first ten characters are zeroes and therefore win this block. 62 million times every second.
62 million times per second sounds like a lot! I should have good chances of winning a block once in a while. Taking into account a new block is generated every 15 seconds, I should have good chances..
The problem is that the Ethereum network has a hash rate capacity of around 60TH/s, this means that the number of hashes the network produces every second are one million times bigger than the hashes my computer produces. This gives me a chance of winning of one in one million every 15 seconds. Taking into account that the reward for winning is 5 ETH (approx 1,150 EUR), I have 1/1,000,000 chance of winning 1,150 EUR every 15 seconds if I leave my computer mining.. this does not sound too promising.
Usually when we need to understand our business’ numbers, we open Microsoft Excel and start applying filters, pivot tables and charts to try to gain insight on what story our data are telling us.
It’s 2017, Isn’t there a better way to do this?
I think it must have been around 2014 when I first heard about Tableau. I immediately liked the tool’s proposal: Easy tool to analyse data in real time without needing to be an expert in SQL, Olap cubes, or any technology. It could take as input for data any number of excel sheets, csv files, or database sources and would immediately allow the user to move the data around, establish relationships between sets of data and start visualising. I’m a visual person, I need to see things in graphical form to understand them, so I really like this concept. In the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Feb 2017, the 3 top players in the BI space by completeness of vision and capacity of execution are Tableau, Microsoft, and Qlik who offer similar solutions for front end analytics.
One of the weak points that I see in Tableau’s proposal is that it only addresses the front end, the data analysis, but leaves the back end, the data model, the origin of data, for you to deal with. In the past I’ve worked on a few data warehousing projects where the immense complexity was in creating a data model which made sense from a business perspective and which could grow with the business’ future needs. Designing the data model wrong was similar to shooting yourself in the foot, as future needs could not be adapted, changes would require refactoring of the whole data model and of the downstream systems which read from this data model and maintenance of this data model would be expensive and complex. In all cases I experienced in the past, creating a data model was similar to creating a monster which would grow in unforeseen and inelegant ways getting more rigid and patchy as time went by.
A good example of a world class level attempt at creating a data model for the capital markets world is ISDA’s (International Swaps and Derivatives Association) FPML (Financial Products Markup Language). The data model they have birthed is immensely complex, as could not be different when the goal is to be able to map any financial instrument. Any attempt at using FPML as inspiration for your data model promises a long and complex project.
Three weeks ago, I attended Moneyconf. There I saw a company called gooddata which offers an interesting model: They take care of your Business Intelligence needs as a service. You send them your data, they organise it and offer you a Tableau style front end tool to visualise it. This would take care of all data warehousing troubles.. however I have some concerns:
- How do they know all the ways you need to structure your data model?
- Does this scale well with big volumes of data?
- How do they manage confidential data? Imagine I have medical records to manage…
- Is the front end tool as complete as Tableau?
The BI world is very cool looking. It brings promise of granting better insights and fancy looking charts, but, is the price tag worth it when we can always just grab an excel and start applying filters, pivot tables and charts to understand the story our data are telling us?
In 2008, the first Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) was created with Bitcoin. Immediately it became visible across industries that DLT technology could be very useful to transfer assets. As time passed, different implementations have come to light using the concept of the DLT which attempt to address different problems with different implementations of a similar idea.
One of these implementations is IBM’s Hyperledger. In late 2015, IBM partnered with 17 other companies:
- Blockchain software vendors such as Digital Asset, or R3
- Technology platform companies such as Intel, RedHat or VMWare
- Financial services firms such as CME, DTCC, Deutsche Borse, Swift or JP Morgan
- System integrators such as Accenture.
The Hyperledger project’s governance is chaired by Blythe Masters (Ex-JP Morgan Executive, CEO of Digital Asset) under the Linux Software foundation. This open governance allows the open source community to contribute to the project, read the source code, download it for free and use it to create new software.
The vision for Hyperledger is a tool for confidential asset transfers in an enterprise environment. These assets can be of any nature: Securities, gold, legal contracts, wills, patents, medical information… Key differences with other DLT solutions such as Ethereum, are that there is no cryptocurrency involved and that access to transaction information is restricted with access rights. Whereas in Ethereum every miner node has a copy of the whole blockchain and can access all the information of any transaction, in Hyperledger all information is encrypted, and only thanks to having the right access rights can you decrypt and access certain information. In a corporate environment this would be a mandatory requirement as you may want to give one client a 10% discount without all your clients knowing about this.
Some interesting projects going on in the corporate world using Hyperledger:
- CLS is working on a payment netting service
- DTCC is building a DLT based derivatives processing platform
- Japanese Stock Exchange is testing DLT for trading environments
- Walmart is building a platform with Hyperledger to track where a Pork chop came from in 7 minutes instead of the current 7 days
- Digital Asset are building a tool that will leverage hyperledger to offer DLT to the financial services community.
- Northern Trust has built a DLT for private equity
Currently there are hundreds of players in the DLT world, in my view the top 4 are R3 Corda, Ethereum, Bitcoin, and Hyperledger. It is hard to tell who will come out ahead in the end, but Hyperledger is certainly worth keeping an eye on.
Imagine you are driving your car at 90kmh, and you realize the brakes are not working. 20 meters ahead of you, crossing the street, are five people who will inexorably die if you run them over. Looking to your right you see one person which is sitting in a terrace eating an ice cream. Your steering wheel is working well, so you could steer your car towards the terrace killing one person, but sparing the five.
What would you do? Most people would choose to kill the one person to spare the five. Sacrificing one life in order to save five seems the right thing to do.
Now imagine you are standing on a bridge overlooking the road. Down the road comes the brakeless car, and at the end of the road are five people who are about to die run over by this car.
You feel helpless to avert this disaster, until you notice, standing next to you on the bridge, a very heavy man. You could push him off the bridge, on to the track, into the path of the car. He would die, but the five people crossing the road would be saved. To make your job even more similar to the previous example, this man is standing on top of a trapdoor which you could open by turning a car-sized steering wheel to the right.
Would you push the unsuspecting fat man? Most people would find it terribly wrong to push the man onto the track. But this raises a moral puzzle: Why does the principle that seems right in the first case – sacrifice one live to save many – seem wrong in the second?
This example, taken from a beautifully taught Harvard online free course goes to explain how the consequentialist moral reasoning of Jeremy Bentham’s utilitarianism (it is the greatest happiness of the greatest number that is the measure of right and wrong) does not hold under the scrutiny of Immanuel Kant’s Categorical moral reasoning (Act only according to that maxim whereby you can, at the same time, will that it should become a universal law).
After 11th May 1997,when IBM’s Deep Blue beat human champion Garry Kasparov, no human will ever again, beat AI at chess.
After 27th May 2017, when Google’s Alphago beat human champion Ke Jie, no human will ever again beat AI at Go.
Once AI driven cars are mainstream, no human will ever again be allowed to drive.
While a human driver has visibility of 120 degrees, an AI has 360 vision from the car, through connectivity could simultaneously have 360 vision from other neighbouring cars, from traffic cameras, or from satellites. Other AI senses could come into play which the human counterpart does not have, for example an AI car could have sonar, similar to bats echoing a signal to detect proximity. An AI could have real time knowledge of where every other car in a radius of 10 kilometres is, in what direction it’s headed, and if it has any technical issue.
Human drivers get road rage, get impatient when sitting in a traffic jam, try to stick their car’s nose in front to gain one inch if possible… all these human behaviours cause traffic jams, accidents and inefficiencies. A perfect AI driver will have none of these traits, and thanks to this, traffic jams will be greatly, if not totally, reduced.
Having a human drive in the future will be as rare as having a human clean the clothes today. I could do it, but why woud I? I have a washing machine for that.
One human problem, is what to tell the AI to do when faced with the example at the beginning of this story. Should an AI follow Jeremy Bentham’s utilitarian principles? Should it choose to kill one to save five? This is particularly dangerous if we will also want the AI to perform surgery, as in order to save 5 patients who needed a heart, a lung, a kidney, a liver, and a stomach, it could choose to kill and butcher a perfectly healthy patient which had just gone to have a regular check-up in order to get the needed organs.
In the brink of a new era, these classic, unresolved questions are more important than ever.