Day 29 the one where I mined some TurtleCoin cryptocurrency

2018: Day 29 the one where I mined some TurtleCoin cryptocurrency
Word count 75,128 + 3,009 or 78,137 of 1,000,000

Dear Reader,

Last night we went to the Pepsi Center to watch the Denver Nuggets play basketball against the Dallas Mavericks. You are probably aware of that from last nights blog post. Today you are getting another thumbnail from that trip. This one is from outside the Pepsi Center right before we went in to watch the game. Overall, I think the Pepsi Center is a decent event center. It works great for basketball and hockey. It would be fun to get season tickets to one of those teams. Maybe that is something that will happen at some point. At this point, I think it might be a special occasion or a few games a year kind of thing. One thing is for sure. I do consider Colorado Avalanche hockey tickets to be expensive. Today I’m pretty tired from watching the whole Denver Nuggets game and getting behind on my overall writing schedule. Trying to catch up means that today is going to be a big day of writing. Maybe I can find something that will help energize my enthusiasm for writing today. That might just mean expanding my mining efforts.

Topic 0: Mining some TurtleCoin

Thanks in part to the latest podcast from Kevin Rose called Block Zero I started to mine some TurtleCoin shares today. Yeah I have ventured out from the relative safety of the NiceHash Miner ecosystem to a fringe cryptocurrency. Today I listened to the founder of TurtleCoin on the Kevin Rose podcast. I went out and elected to download and install this mining software for TurtleCoin. That is not really an endorsement on my part. I mostly just thought it would be amusing to mine for a few turtles. They gave me 10 turtles for my wallet via something called a faucet and I managed to mine for another pending balance of 24.15 TRTL. Maybe just the idea of having 34.15 TRTL amuses me. Yeah —- you can probably tell it amused me. Letting the GPU miner xmr-stak.exe run on a TurtleCoin pool was enough to reduce my NiceHash daily estimated BTC to less than one dollar. It was an acceptable opportunity cost.

The process to install everything to mine TurtleCoin on Windows 10 was pretty easy. I downloaded the software package from Github. The main TurtleCoin website will point you in the right direction for the current download. You can visit the online domain and find the download. I’m really not sure that you should do that. I mostly mined the cryptocurrency for amusement. After downloading the package it seemed to want to run a blockchain sync process for like an hour. After all the synching was complete it asked me to start a new wallet. That was pretty easy they have have a text based simple wallet function built into the platform. The idea of using a text based wallet took me back a bit. I’m sure at some point they will have a nice GUI based wallet that installs from the start. At some point, I’m going to have to figure out how to sell a TurtleCoin. It does not appear they are on any of the exchanges at this time.

That first 500 words from the blog post were an example of overly stilted technical prose without enough explanation to really define the topics being discussed. Alas, I’ll try to do better at some point during this writing journey. Sometimes I spiral down down a path toward sharing information vs. telling a story in a useful way. The TurtleCoin miner has been running all afternoon. I have about 800 coins mined so far. It takes a minimum of 1,000 coins for the mining pool to transfer the coins back to my simple wallet. Oddly, I have no plans to do anything with the coins. It just seemed like something that would be fun to get setup and fun to mine for the day. So many cryptocurrencies exist. You have to be careful downloading and working with miner software. Even this one miner that Kevin Rose has used and people seem to talk about flags my Webroot antivirus software. After I get to 1,000 coins the software is getting quarantined and removed. Cryptocurrency really is the wild wild west of software online.

My Windows 10 installation on its own is very stable. Today alone I have seen about three all out system crashes and restart events. That probably has something to do with all the mining software. It is possible that running the NiceHash and the TurtleCoin software at the same time is not the greatest idea. That did not stop me from making it happen. I’m tracking the mining progress and counting down till that 1,000th coin gets mined tonight. Things are getting close the latest count is over 930 coins. My general thoughts on TurtleCoin are really summed up by all the questions I have about it. People who really got into bitcoin early got to see coins arrive much faster. That was what peaked my interest in TurtleCoin today. I wanted the experience of watching the miner find a ton of coins. It really is more fun that way. My NiceHash miner pays out in BTC. You are probably aware by now that all of my mining efforts have resulted in just a fraction of one bitcoin. I’m talking serious decimal places. Watching a miner bring in coin after coin is way more fun.

My open TurtleCoin wallet address is TRTLuyBt4HK8fs8g7PjVVaSToM8dsVmUeV3cKvs8fughh3qNrd49zAG33DhHhJuVQoUUmnEUBqdkmHh3rgBEwE15PYaHxfzLggv

Topic 1: Mining strategy

This is a topic I struggle with. It was literally hard to write about. You are probably only getting a paragraph on this one. I believe that blockchain as a technology has some very real and meaningful use cases. Some of the cryptocurrencies being built now and from what I can tell 1,000s of them exist are highly suspect. The value of them has been questioned by Warren Buffett and countless others. That is what makes this effort highly conflicted. In terms of a long term mining strategy it might be prudent to simply mine a bunch of coins on each of the emerging coins and hope one of them ends up being the next bitcoin. We will call this the buckets of everything rainy day fund approach. That is one way to go about it. It is a rather blanked coverage option that simply hedges by covering all the bases. People use all sorts of mining strategies. My selection of NiceHash to mine by selling hashing power has worked out well. I’ll be able to recoup the cost of my graphics cards and move on with some BTC. A strategy that involves mining a ton of different coins and home one of them hits it big probably has greater upside potential. It also has greater risk to completely fail as a strategy.

Topic 2: Star Trek Discovery

Tonight is the night that episode 13 of the CBS streaming series Star Trek Discovery is available. The new Xbox One S is setup to play that episode shortly. Joni is legit excited about new Star Trek episodes. I’m still wondering if I should watch all the Star Trek Voyager Borg episodes instead. It might be better to just watch a couple episodes of Voyager each day instead of trying to watch all the borg episodes back to back. Paying CBS a monthly fee to watch shows with commercial still brings sadness to my life. Maybe at some point CBS will accept TurtleCoin. I would feel better about giving them turtles. I just checked in on the my TurtleCoin mining effort and my wallet has received a payment of 1,028 coins. I guess now would be the time to check off mining 1,000 coins from my to do list for the night. It looks like we missed a few episodes this year already. I’m about to get a bowl of Nearly Naked popcorn. It is pretty good. I guess the last episode we watched was episode 9. Today we are watching episode 10 on the CBS streaming app via our Xbox One S. As you can tell I’m not 100% supportive of CBS charging me for streaming shows, but I do like having new episodes of Star Trek. If I was in charge of television programming, then they would still be making episodes of Firefly. This episode is a massive plot pivot. We will find out shortly if this is massively lazy writing or inventive story telling. It could end up going either way.

Topic 3: Rounding out the night

Today I have been working on catching up to my expected word count. I spent several hour messing around with TurtleCoin today. That was an interesting foray into mining a minor cryptocurrency with a small and wild community. I checked out the Discord website/chat community part of TurtleCoin for an hour or so. It really cemented my thoughts on building a 2nd computer or potentially digging out an old motherboard and dropping a decent graphics card on it. That is probably something that every mining hobbyist has done already. That is where all the graphics cards have gone. I’m going to try to figure out where my pile of old motherboards went. The last time I remember seeing them was in the garage, but that was a couple of weeks ago.

This will be a week where a ton of work needs to happen. It will be very busy. We are quickly approaching February. I’m considering marking February a themed writing month. That is a compelling idea that pulls me in far enough for some consideration, but it does not seem likely for actual execution. The idea of me sticking to a single writing theme for an entire month of producing prose is highly unlikely. February has 28 days. That pretty much equates to writing 84,000 words on a specific theme. I guess it could all be spent writing a thriller novel or maybe a treatise on the future of blockchain. It could just be a month of rambling and roving prose that focuses in on the events of the day.

Topic 4: The final lap of catching up

What a whirlwind of a weekend. Our trusty toaster even gave way this weekend. We had to make a special trip to Costco and pick either the 4 slice or 2 slice toaster. That is pretty much it. They only had two options for toasters at the Costco. Things worked out well enough we went with the 2 slice toaster option. The last toaster never really worked right. It was a horrible product, but we used it until it failed. Costco had a couple options for toaster ovens. We have never had one. They seem rather pleasant. You may not be surprised to know that “toaster oven vs. toaster” is a commonly searched term on Google. Searching for “toaster oven use cases” did not produce as many results as I would have expected. It might have been a better strategy to search for recipes and toaster ovens. I settled in to read an article from the Food Network on the, “13 reasons you are underestimating your toaster oven.” Obviously, the idea of making some cornbread jumped out at me. It is pretty unlikely that we are going to buy a toaster oven and that is undoubtedly also the reason why we don’t have a toaster oven. That was an example of causality in action. Our lack of interest is the reason we don’t have one.

I just realized that we are at like 2,000 words for the day. I could just leave the post like this and move on. That would be admitting defeat.

Topic 5: Breaking out my glasses

I just ended up breaking out my glasses. It took me a minute to try and locate them today. I found pair n-1 and pair n-2. At the moment I’m actually wearing n-2 from a few years back. My new glasses are around here somewhere, but where exactly they have gone I am not sure. Up until a few minutes ago I thought that my new glasses were in the car. It turned out the glasses in the car were actually n-2. Maybe I’ll check my Timbuk2 command messenger bag. One sec.

They were not in the messenger bag either. Now i’m wondering if maybe they got put in a suit pocket and are upstairs somewhere or fell out at the dry cleaners. Today has been a day of the music of Guthrie Govan. That happens from time to time. It is not something that happens every day and Govan is by no means as much a part of my life as the music of Warren Zevon.

Dr. Nels Lindahl
Broomfield, Colorado
Written on my Storm Stryker custom build PC and my ASUS Flip Chromebook C101P using Google Docs

P.S. You may not have enjoyed my deep dive into the word of fringe cryptocurrency today. The topic has caught my attention. I learn best when doing applied research. That means really digging into and understanding things in a hands on way. Just reading about working with a command line based cryptocurrency would not be as interesting as actually doing it. Just digging in and reading step by step guides is exciting. It was even more exciting to see the TurtleCoins start to show up. That part of the process really is like mining gold. That rush is more than just being in the wild wild west it is about the promise of future gains. I would be amused to see the value of TurtleCoin go up. That would be the best case scenario. Based on my review of my NiceHash mining data the opportunity cost was about $3.50. I’m sure the process of mining and digging into TurtleCoin provided me more than the opportunity cost in pure entertainment value.

It may be a regular thing for me to dig into and mine a few fringe cryptocurrencies. That means they are new enough to not be on an exchange or be supported by an ecosystem like NiceHash or Coinbase. That also means they have a much smaller market cap and could potentially grow at a much higher multiplier. People are always looking for the next great stock. I guess finding the next great coin might just be like that search. You would have to put in a few caveats about the inherent risk within the cryptocurrency market. The fluctuations are great and the risk of things just disappearing goes up as you venture toward the fringes. It is a strange world where people are publishing white papers and trying to extend the foundations of blockchain for privacy, security, and interesting use cases. We will see where it all ends up and that is something that will probably be highly variable for the next three years.

It is a wild time in the world of cryptocurrencies. So many of them are popping up and the technology is changing rapidly. A lot of Github projects are launching and forking at high speed. That means that we are seeing a great deal of innovation. It also means that the number of scams and technologies that will fail is very high. You have to really pay attention to what you are getting involved in. Warren Buffett and a lot of very skilled evaluators of economics think this is a huge bubble waiting to crash. That should give you pause. My efforts are for research and entertainment purposes. That means if all my coins fall to a value of zero I’m ok with that.

Now the whole concept of building another computer to mine with is probably counter to the sentiment in the previous paragraph. I know that is the case. My interest in building another duel graphics card computer is probably misguided. It is probably based on the fact that I like to build new computers and it seems like an interesting thing to do given the potential offset of cost from NiceHash mining. The market could tank and remove the possibility of that offset. That a very real concern about this whole cryptocurrency mining bubble that exists. It all could come crashing down or the party could go on for a year or two. We will see for sure. I’m kind of curious to see which way it will end up going.

Ok. I need to go buy a bag of salt for the driveway. Apparently it is supposed to snow later this week and I need to be prepared. That should be pretty easy. I’m going to buy a bucket to keep the salt in as well. We had a ton of snow that has been slowly melting in the yard, but we lucked out and did not have all that much ice in the driveway. That is where things get really difficult. Snow is easy enough to deal with, but ice is an entirely different story altogether.

Getting to 3,000 words today was rather hard. It took a lot of effort and determination to push to hitting the goal. Maybe that comes at a cost to the quality of the prose being produced or maybe it just washes out in the end. Either way it happened. It is done. We hit 3,000 words and I’m going to move on to writing a post for tomorrow. I need to make sure that I do not fall behind again on a weekend.

Upcoming 2018 Writing Topics:

— Write an open letter for students on the first day of college
— Some thoughts on my sports trading card collection
— A complete ranking of the hot sauces that I have tried
— A post about my top ten favorite science fiction television shows
— Recap of all the video camera equipment I have owned
— All the promise and failures of my first Sony camcorder
— That one with a roadtrip to Florida
— Applied AI: A use case based exploration
— My ode to minor league hockey
— Progress within general AI vs. specialized use cases
— My review of the ASUS C101P Chromebook
— On leadership and the modern workplace
— The best way to archive digital content

Feel free to leave topic suggestions in the comment section.

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