jesta witness update - jan/feb 2017

in #witness-category4 years ago

Checking in and providing a status update since it's been far too long.

I have been somewhat inactive (posting) since the Holiday and wanted to summarize the last few months. The reason for the inactivity has been due to multiple very time consuming reasons - with one being a move across the US that started with an unknown destination. A move was needed, that's all I knew. I'm happy to say that some direction has finally been set and decisions made, the move is finally in progress, and I'll be settling down into a new home early to mid March.

After settling, I plan on getting back into the groove of things, participating more and being a more active voice. It's also very likely that I'll also be exploring opportunities for remote work to generate some income. I've been living the startup life in Southern California for the last 2 years without a traditional job. It's taken it's toll on me across many, many levels.

So what have I been up to since my last update in early December? Here's a brief rundown, I'll try to be brief and not too in-depth.

  • @paxmagnus and I unfortunately have had to set the business concepts behind Reprint aside for the time being. We spent a lot of time this year really digging into how things can play out, but the overall feeling is "we are too early for this". Development will continue on the open source project, but actually building a business behind it that's able to hire the team we need is going to have to wait for the ecosystem to mature. There's a number of external dependancies blocking it's success which should be resolved as time goes on and I'll continue to advocate. We have been planning a recap post for the @greymass account with the details of this, but my move has really slowed progress on formulating it into a post. More than happy to answer any specific questions about this, but I don't want to keep rambling :)
  • Created and have continued to work on the Steem Forum Prototype. There are some insurmountable problems right now simply because how Steem itself is built, but those problems will be overcome with time and I still really believe there's a lot of merit to an interface like this. The 3rd party access/authorization stuff slated this year on the 2017 roadmap will be a huge help to progress with projects like this.
  • If you're a regular to steemdb (well, as much as I am), you've probably noticed a lot of small changes over the last few months and a few improved pages. I've been slowly tweaking and adjusting things (like adding links or changing text) to slowly make the site more useful for certain use cases. I'll compile a list of these changes and mark a new version once I've completed everything on my current todo list. Over the past few months I've gotten dozens of suggestions for improvements, and have been slowly working through them all, so keep them coming!
  • I've migrated a bunch of servers since the beginning of the year to optimize costs. SteemDB, SteemDB's private steemd node, (public RPC node), SteemStats, Reprint (and the handful of prototypes using it), and a few utility servers have all been moved to these new resources. This took a lot of time to find the right homes for each of these services at the right price, but I'm pretty happy with everything landed.
  • I've spent a decent amount of time over the last 2 weeks troubleshooting my witness nodes and have yet to find a conclusive reason as to why every day or two I'm missing a few blocks. It's been frustrating and I'm still actively monitoring things and I've finally resorted to just setting up brand new servers. All has been quiet for 24 hours and I'm hoping that by posting this I don't jinx it... I am very much hoping things have smoothed out and I can go for a week without missing a block. It would be nice to not worry about it while I'm on the road.
  • There have been some very spirited debates about curation rewards over the last week or so which I've been involved in. I only mention it because I've spent hours reading posts and comments, and responding as much as I can. A thank you to everyone that's engaged in the debate and helped clarify the issues we're all experiencing. No perfect solution has been found, but the public discourse has been healthy and relatively free of trolling and harsh words.

Starting next week, until sometime in March, I'll be in transit. On the road, hotels, and friends spare bedrooms - and I'm uncertain how great the internet's going to be or how much I'll be at a computer. I have tethering via my phone and SMS notifications setup for my witness environment, but if you need something urgent, feel free to use I'll at the very minimum have email and get notifications from

Here's hoping for a much calmer 2/3/4th quarter of this year! :)


Good luck with the move @jesta, you are one of the few people I was so glad to meet and get to know in 2016, you are a scholar and a gentleman, a wealth of knowledge and a resource of information. I might have to start bothering gandalf with my questions while you are busy or away.

Thank for all your contributions and all the luck in the world with the move. There's a saying in Romanian: "schimbi locu', shimbi norocu'". Basically, it translates into: if you change place, luck will also change.

Keep it up!

Thank you for the updates! Be safe out there and keep us posted brother ;)

Thanks for the well wishes and I'll definitely keep you guys posted ;)

Way to go, thanks for all your work Jesta. Is there a "master" thread for the comments rewards issue? Thanks!

Not that I know of. It's been a lot of chat on (which I'm sure would be hard to keep up on), as well as a few random posts. Maybe look in #curation?

@jesta We hired @someguy123 to setup and manage viva.witness and he's doing a great job at a very reasonable rate. You might consider reaching out to him while you're away anyways and see if he can help you.

I mention this because I've always been extremely pleased with his work and he's extremely trustworthy. Hope it's helpful!

I'd prefer to keep running them myself, it's the best way to keep on top of changes and making sure I have a deep understanding of how things work :)

Thank you very much @jesta

Positive for 2017 !!!

The tools that you designed are the most useful I have seen so far. Thanks for making them viable. And good luck with your new life. That's important too.

Thank you! It's been a blast working on them, these are the sorts of apps I like building.

You are doing great, report or no report :) Congrats!

If it's not a secret - which hosting and configuration can you recommend for running a single full node? TNX!

Ps: Your post has been appreciated on Steemit Appreciation Friday No. 6. Thank you!


For a full node I've been running them all on anything that has a decent SSD + 32GB of RAM and still retaining the entire chain in-memory (using /dev/shm or some other ramdisk method). The CPU's themselves don't seem incredibly important unless a ton of remote connections are established to it and you use them for haproxy/nginx. You might be able to get away with 24GB RAM, but it's not as future proof and within months it may not be enough at all.

If it's an incredibly low traffic full node you could probably get away with 8-16GB RAM and just use disk i/o. I have a few development environments setup to use lower amounts of RAM like that, but nothing production ready.

Thanks a lot. Yes, disk speed and lots of memory.

There should be a sharded blockchain in the future of steem. Otherwise ...

Can you point me to a particular cloud or hosting provider?

Haha yeah. Good problems to have though right?

you're a good worker man, i like many things you've done for steemit.

Understandable that you are busy. Thanks for doing a great job on steemdb and golosdb.

Thank you for the information regarding the work that you and @paxmagnus have been up to recently. I know now is not the time but I hope you two remain engaged and can share some phone calls once in a while so that I may help to keep you connected to other opportunities. Safe travels and best wishes!

It's always a pleasure to hear from you.