A CHAT WITH @jamesc
How did you join Steemit and what's your role at the Steemit Inc HQ?
I started working full time for Invictus and BitShares in September 2014 then came over full time to help build the first release of the Steemit.
My role: Developer
I work on the UI (user interface) code and created the serialization layer for the transactions (recorded on the blockchain) and developed the APIs to other cryptographic stuff like private keys, public keys, and signatures... So, some of it is pure data and API like you would find on the server and the rest is the super awesome new stuff like the React and Redux UI architecture. In summary, I have a good background in servers and server-side programming, data modeling, while the last two years have added a lot of UI to my experience.
How do you spend a typical day at work?
Well, first off I work remotely so this does have an influence on my role and activities. While I'm saving time by not having a commute and by having quick access to a kitchen or even yoga or nap time, I'm missing out on face-to-face communication. So, naturally I really think about being connected to my team and community. I really do pay attention to how I'm feeling: do I feel like I am part of the team or should I be reaching out more.
The trick is to have a project with support from other members and, where innovation occurs, really share what I am planning and doing so that it can be understood appreciated improved and supported.
I'm very fortunate this is a Open Source project with a community that has lots of energy and people around it. There are many opportunities to communicate.
Further, it is not about how much labor I spend at the keyboard coding or communicating. Being well researched and reading and following what is going on it a huge part of being connected too. The opportunities I do get to chat with the team is time very well spent. This is respectful of their time as well as mine. All opportunities to write good code and fix bugs are extremely valuable too, this information gets recorded and re-used many times over.
What other interests do you have apart from software development and crytocurrencies?
What are my interests: What is available? Water skiing, diving, soaking up sun, mixing music, learning videos and blogs, social media, teaching my son how to (build, eat, read, new ways to think, play, focus, learn, etc), eating well, spending time with my wife and friends.
Unpleasant or unfamiliar things are important too as those are opportunities to expand my interests and have thought experiments: waiting in line, chores, knowing how to deal with irrational people, discussing sensitive topics, etc.. My interest is to be happy and healthy. My goal is to age well (or not at all) and retain a healthy brain and body that will influence the environment in a more positive way.
How my interests have expanded: I'm a crypto anarchist agorist voluntaryist (and some other fancy words I don't know yet). All this means is that I am simply re-discovering freedom and creativity and questioning any and every bad idea or thought that stands in the way. The wonderful community at Steemit has done an amazing job at giving us new ideas and opportunities to liberate ourselves from tyranny. This is the key to peace and freedom around the world.
I have also developed a real passion for alternative media. Steemit being a censorship resistant and rewarding is a great place for alternate media to grow. Alternative media is simply "free press" but with the added punch: stuff other media can't report on. I look for quality news and material that a corrupt main-stream media will try to hide from its people.
I'm not picky I accept a variety of view points beyond my own however there are very clear guidelines that we can follow that make this experience successful. I have been told that I am "awake" but this is not saying much; nor does it define who I am. It is just a compliment. So there is much to be done in this area.
Although my technical knowledge and thinking has served me well it has not provided me with happiness. So, I'm big on seeking ego-less thoughtlessness enlightenment. This is more than a hobby, it is absolutely necessary for me to grow and do better. Without enlightenment I'm running in circles and I'm not happy doing it. So, along these lines, I also look for opportunities to explorer alternate states of consciousness while keeping: health, mind, and body.
Do you think the steem blockchain has a potential to solve some world problems? And in which manner?
The Steemit blockchain has enormous potential to solve real world problems. Just look at what is happening at the other centralized social media platforms. There are of course direct cases of censorship but in my view the most telling move is the recent wave of de-monetization at YouTube. The rollout was a brute force method of de-monetizing entire categories then leaving it to the content producers to make a repeal. The policy gets as general as de-monetizing anything that is not advertiser friendly.
Historically non-advertiser friendly probably would have included: tobacco causes cancer, risks to our environment: pesticides, vaccines, geo engineering. Non-advertiser friendly can include evidence questioning the official narratives: JFK and 9/11, and news exposing false flag events. All these things are examples where corporations or government will use censorship to keep the truth away from the public and all are examples where Steemit can excel. If they can't shut down the truth completely they will use other tactics like de-monetization, freezing of bank accounts, or etc..
Steemit is the most powerful tool to date in the way of spreading truth and rewarding people for their efforts. I suggest we all use our influence on the platform to expand a source of exploration and truth finding on important topics that are sure to rock the boat. Finding the truth can involve guess work so there will be mistakes. However, let's be tolerant learn the skill and improve. The criminals are not going to investigate themselves. This responsibility falls on the alternate media and on the public. Fortunately a lot of people know about the censorship, corrupt media and banking so we are already off to a good start. This is one way Steemit help the world.
Steemit provides a powerful fully automated monetization machine resistant to the issues stated above. We have a low barrier to entry, on Steemit: no credit cards, no bank accounts, no problem. Further the Steemit developers and witnesses can form two layers of protection against features that might censor, freeze funds, or freeze accounts. We can put crypto in the hands of dedicated and talented bloggers.
Finally, we have censorship resistance because Steemit content is easily mirrored by peer nodes. In a worst-case scenario users could fork Steemit and make an alternate chain. I think it is safe to say that Steemit is a tool owned by the people.
What's your personal opinion on recent issues on steemit : voting restrictions, whales powering down, low prices of steem etc ?
The change to limiting voting at 4 votes per day instead of 25 was retracted. I'll share some in-site though, this is an interesting topic. The change sounded quite shocking but let’s remember it affects everyone and there is a counter balance. The blockchain is spending a fixed budget, so if someone is voting with less voting power than before there will be a lot of other people voting with less voting power than before. Also, at the same time the budget is going to be spent regardless. It has been my experience that changes like these have been very well thought out and have some really good ideas behind them.
I'm a whale powering down so I'm going to say I'm ok with it.. Actually, if you look usually end up powering back up too. I can't think of a better investment than Steemit so why on earth would I power down? It is simple, diversification.
Further, to date I have limited this to diversification of like kind assets (crypto currency assets). I have acquired enough ideas that I just feel safer sticking with crypto currency projects and crypto startups. These things move at a pace that both keeps me alert and that I am comfortable with. I'm not interested in selling out I just need to be smart and diversify. If I can't find a good deal I just power back up.. Once I feel I'm diversified I will not power down as long as I believe Steemit is an awesome platform and investment. Diversification includes all my crypto investments and does not include how much I have "secured" from Steemit; that might be a popular question but it is really meaningless. On the flip side, if I did not have the whale account I would instead be watching for a stable bottom and then start regular purchases of Steem Power. My goal all along has been to invest where I see value, and diversify when there is opportunity.
How do I feel about the price fall? Ever since Bitcoin cryptos have taken long slow and steady falls. There is no practical way to know when a bounce back is going to happen so there is really nothing to do.
I believe the most efficient use of time is value investing. Invest in projects that have value and ignore the price. If the price explodes then review the portfolio and see if it is unbalanced.
I have seen this so much so many times it really does not phase me.
I do take notice that moods on the forums really are affected by the price drop. That is unfortunate, this is not necessary and can't possibly help in making good investment decisions. It is better to be protected and disconnected from price and just have fun.
So, what do I think when I have to watch my whale stake value fall several orders of magnitude? Not a whole lot.. lol..
My goal is not to seek material happiness. Being free from material happiness means that anything after the basic human needs are meet can be turned into a fun experiment. So, it might as well be fun and games.Further, the whale stake does not define the future. Modern business models afford us far more efficient ways to organize work groups of people without the traditional dollar-for-dollar expenses of running a business..
So, even if one has the goal of creating a large group of people working hard to change the word they would not necessarily equate this to dollars or currency. Sure money helps but experiments can be numerous (diversification) and in the super efficient scalable decentralized world (like blockchains) rarely do experiments fail completely. Having several experiments gives diversification and helps maintain the freedom to change without fear of loosing enough to affect those basic essentials. So, like a coin collector I hang on to my most treasured possessions. I believe prices and markets teach us the most when we just let things happen; approach these with a calm open and inquisitive mind.
Thanks @jamesc for taking the time to have chat with SteemMag. Although it did last for several hours, It was interesting learning new perspectives on things… Your rock, man. All the best…
This Week On Steemit
A lot of interesting events happened this week. And in case you missed them, we’ve got your back. Here are some of the most important events that happened on Steemit this week.
~ @roelandp announces the second set of speakers for SteemFest – A November 3-day conference for Steemians
~ Steem maintains last week’s 8th position on the coinmarketcap.com’s crypto market capitalization list.
~ @thecryptodrive announces SteemSports
~This adds to the growing collection of dedicated steem apps. For a comprehensive list check out SteemTools.com
~ Meanwhile, SBD reached a recent high with rates ranging from 1 SD = 0.86 -0.92 this week
~$0.45 and $0.6 were the lowest and highest value traded this week for a unit of Steem respectively.
The Road To SteemFest
The countdown to The SteemFest 11-13 November, 2016 has begun and the excitement is building up. A new set of speakers have been announced, tickets are being bought and a lot of Steemians are giddy over the event.
48 days to go…….Are you going?
SteemFest Tickets GiveAway
Watch out for next weekend when SteemMag celebrates a special event. We would also be giving out some free SteemFest Tickets ;)
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