Daveslist #3: Ethereum, Buried treasure, and Clash of Clans

This has been a rough week all around the world. I'm not going to comment on the tragedies in Orlando
Daveslist #3: Ethereum, Buried treasure, and Clash of Clans
By Daveslist • Issue #3
This has been a rough week all around the world. I’m not going to comment on the tragedies in Orlando and the UK (and the narrowly averted tragedy in Los Angeles) other than to say that I think we can and must do better. 
Let’s get to it.

Sadly appropriate this week.
Sadly appropriate this week.
It's going to be okay.
After a week like this, we could all use some perspective. You’re going to think this is pretty dark at first, but I promise the payoff is worth it. At the end of the day, the real meaning in our lives comes from what we do for others.
The Zipf Mystery
Get ready to have your mind blown. If there were ever any evidence that we’re living in some computer simulation, this has to be it. This will take about 20 minutes to get through, and you’ll definitely be left scratching your head. Do you even hapax legomenon, bro?
This is simultaneously terrifying and reassuring. It’s great that the systems controlling many nukes are “air-gapped”, and therefore less vulnerable to hacking. But if you’re my age, you probably remember how easy it was to destroy/wipe/lose a 5.25" floppy. It seems like there is probably a better way to manage our nuclear arsenal.
In Deep Space, Astronauts Will Use Celestial Navigation Like Columbus and Drake
Here’s one of those things that make you go, “Well, duh.” How else would we navigate space? It’s not like there’s Google Maps for Saturn (or are there…). Think about how easy it’ll be to take a sunsight when you have a million or so suns to choose from.
500 year-old shipwreck loaded with gold found in Namibian desert
I think I saw this movie. File this one under “the truth is stranger than fiction”. Not only was the ship found largely intact, it was carrying $13 million in gold coins from 1533. How did it stay in one piece? Well, that’s the really cool part. The ship was also carrying 22 tons of copper ingots, and if there’s one thing marine organisms hate, it’s copper. 
Scenehound app helps sniff out overcrowded bars and restaurants
This app is desperately needed. Sometimes you want to be in a crowded bar or restaurant, and sometimes it’s the last thing you want. Scenehound lets you check out the “scene” before you commit. It’s only available in New Orleans right now, but an idea like this is bound to scale.
The Shockingly Simple, Surprisingly Cost-Effective Way to End Homelessness
This is a story I’ve been following for years, and I have to say I’m really happy and impressed with the outcome so far. Many years ago, the state of Utah decided to end homelessness by just giving everyone a home, no questions asked, no drug testing requirements, nada. Back when they started, they did the math and it looked like this was the more cost effective option when you tally all the costs of homelessness.
Well, it worked. Or I should say it’s working. And they were dead right about the money: the state has saved millions, but even more important, thousands of chronically homeless people were taken off the streets and given stability and dignity.
The Uncanny Mind That Built Ethereum
Bitcoin has been on an absolute tear lately, screaming up from $475 ten days ago to almost $800 today. But there’s a little known layer being built on the blockchain known as Ethereum, and its unit of currency is called ether. The brains behind Ethereum is a 22-year old wunderkind Vitalik Buterin, and he’s set to turn banking and contract law on its head. 
In a fascinating aside to this article, Ethereum juggernaut DAO was hacked today, in what will certainly be seen as ether’s first major test as a viable platform. At the moment it appears the hackers made away with $50 million, but Buterin seems confident all the money will be recovered before the hackers are able to do anything with it. If he’s right, you can probably expect to see the value of ether skyrocket.
China’s Tencent Nears Deal for ‘Clash of Clans’ Maker Supercell
If you’ve ever wondered just how viral a mobile phone game can be, the company behind perennial time waster Clash of Clans is about to be acquired for $9 billion. That’s billion with a “B”.  This eclipses the $6 billion paid for the makers of Candy Crush last year. If the deal goes through, it’ll pencil out to $60 million per employee. Unreal. Makes me think the Chinese have never heard of Zynga.
Why You Should Keep An Accomplishments List
We all lead interesting lives in our own ways. Lord knows I’ve put a lot of miles on my chassis. It’s easy to forget some of the amazing things we’ve done as we get older, and that’s why it’s a good idea to keep a daily list (however mundane) of the things you’ve accomplished. I personally use the Five Minute Journal for this because I’m pretty lazy, but almost anything will do. It also helps you to build a “gratitude loop” in your brain, which improves your well being in general. Try it for a couple weeks and see if you don’t feel better.
That’s it for this week. Hit REPLY and let me know what you thought about this week’s selection. As always, feel free to forward this to anyone you think might enjoy it, and have a fantastic weekend!
P.S. If you’re in the U.S. and happen to be a father (that you know of, wink wink), Happy Father’s Day!
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