In this post, I discuss how I learned the basics of Solidity for free even though I previously had no coding experience.

Note of caution: In this post, I show images containing Solidity code. I cannot guarantee that these examples are written securely. The purpose of these images is only to show you how I used the resources and how I learned the basics.


Beginning my Journey with CryptoZombies


Critics of Ethereum are concerned that the Ethereum blockchain is too big. They are concerned that it takes up too much storage space.

Storage space is an issue because, if the everyday user is unable fit the blockchain on their laptop, they will be unable to locally validate the blockchain.

If the average user is unable to run a full node, they will lose the ability to experience the full potential of crypto. This may also give third parties who are able to run full nodes more influence on how the Ethereum blockchain evolves in the future.

In this post…


The most common question that people have about Bitcoin is, “Why Bitcoin. Why not just use dollars?”

In this post, I will discuss why some people not only believe that Bitcoin will become better money that US dollars, but also how Bitcoin can contribute to a more affluent society.

The concepts I write about in this post are drawn mostly from a single source; a book called The Bitcoin Standard by Saifedean Ammous.

Why Gold Emerged as Money

The beginning of this book discusses the history of money as we know it and why gold emerged as the most successful form of money. Some of…

I used to be under the impression that a mining node was the only type of node that mattered. After all, the true blockchain is always the one with the most proof of work right?

After I recently lost a twitter beef, I realized I had severely underestimated the value of running a non mining node. In this post, I will describe what a full node does, how it adds security to the network, and how it gives you, the user, more autonomy and control.

Note: Throughout this post, I will discuss nodes using Ethereum as the primary example. …

This post is about a recent twitter beef that made me reconsider what decentralization really means. A Bitcoin maximalist helped me realize that Ethereum has elements of centralization that I was completely unaware of.

// describes how twitter beef went down

Recently, I became very curious about the strong opinions that Bitcoin maximalists had against Ethereum. Originally, I didn’t pay much attention to their opinions because they seemed too emotionally charged. On Twitter they generally call every crypto that isn’t Bitcoin a shitcoin. They even call Ethereum a scam!

Despite their up front opinions, I put effort into understanding their arguments beyond a surface level. I didn’t…

The Holy Grail of scaling is figuring out how to make a cryptocurrency surpass VISA’s transaction output without sacrificing decentralization. According to VISA, they can handle over 24,000 transactions per second (tps) at max capacity. Ethereum and Bitcoin falls very short of this. Ethereum processes approximately 15.6 tps (average tps on 2018/1/4) and Bitcoin processes approximately 5.68 tps (average tps on 2017/12/13).

Many blockchain projects currently exist that call themselves Ethereum or Bitcoin killers because they claim to be able to process thousands of transactions per second. This may be true, but fast transactions usually come at a price. …

Ethereum is not the first protocol to attempt to use proof of stake (PoS) as a consensus method. Peercoin implemented PoS in 2013 and other projects implemented their own versions of PoS not too long after (PIVX, Reddcoin, etc). These projects hoped that PoS would eliminate the problems associated with energy intensive mining while maintaining the high levels of security and decentralization required of a cryptocurrency network.

The PoS community was enthusiastic about their new consensus method, but skeptics were quick to cite two theoretical security issues facing PoS; the long range attack problem and the nothing at stake problem…

This post is Part 2 of my series on Ethereum’s planned upgrade to proof-of-stake (PoS). If you haven’t read part 1 yet, click here.

In part 1:

  • I explain what Casper is,
  • Explain how PoS aims to use deposits of Ether to increase security
  • Explain how PoS aims to reduce energy consumption and
  • Explain how PoS is seen as a necessary transition before we can increase the speed of the Ethereum blockchain.

In Part 2, I will explain how proof-of-stake aims to reduce mining centralization and aims to enhance the security of blockchain technology.

Reducing Mining Centralization

The Ideal Mining Situation

Ideally, you want many miners evenly…

In proof-of-work (PoW), consensus mechanisms and miner incentives all fall under a simple logic:

How do we solve temporary forks in the network? We choose the fork with the most PoW.

How do we decide which miner gets to propose the next block (aka how do we create randomness)? We turn to proof-of-work.

How do we prevent miners from attacking the network? Once again, PoW provides us with the answer.

Proof-of-work’s elegance is in its simplicity.

In their quest to enhance the potential of blockchain technology, the Ethereum foundation is planning on transitioning to a new consensus mechanism called proof-of-stake…

This post is part 2 of my series on proof-of-work. If you have not read part 1 yet, click here.

Mining Only Pays Off if it is on the Right Chain

Miners are not guaranteed to receive their block reward just because they successfully mined a block. There are times when two miners solve a block at the same time creating a temporary fork in the network. In this situation, both versions of the blockchain (created by the fork) are technically legitimate in the sense that these blocks were created by honest miners. We can refer to these miners as honest because they both followed the rules when the fork occurred…

Julian Martinez

Cryptocurrency enthusiast living in the San Francisco Bay Area.

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