The war to be the blockchain that ruled them all

This post is part of my periodic Dispatches from Crypto. For notifications, sign up here.

In the early 1990s, a dial up Internet startup screen was a list:


How Coinbase is contributing to the emerging DeFi ecosystem with USDC

In 2018, the Centre Consortium — which includes Coinbase and Circle — launched USDC, a stable, secure, and transparent stablecoin. Since then, it has become one of the world’s most popular and trusted stablecoins.

To encourage further growth in decentralized finance (DeFi), Coinbase is announcing the USDC Bootstrap Fund. The Fund will support developers building DeFi protocols by investing USDC directly in the protocol. Unlike more traditional investments, this money is tied up in a smart contract protocol with return provided by a counterparty (a borrower or taker).

In our talks with countless developers, we consistently heard how hard it…


This is a post in my occasional series, Notes to a Young Software Engineer. Sign up here.

I was programming alone in my apartment — the GPU heating my cold apartment, a few days stubble on my face, and my last human interaction eight days before — when burnout hit me.

At the time, I was attempting to will my 3D printing CAD startup into existence with a remote team. Initially, working out of my apartment meant I could code without interruption. Then the isolation became stifling. …


Become a better programmer by building a routine and habit for reading code

This is a post in my occasional series, Notes to a Young Software Engineer. Sign up here.

A code snippet from Redis

If you woke up one day resolved to be a great writer, you’d hear two simple pieces of feedback: write a lot, and read even more.

In software, plenty of people write code, but precious few spend time reading it — especially code outside their day to day work. That is a mistake. Early in your career, act like an aspiring writer and embrace reading diverse code.

Read widely and read often. …


From chasing shiny tech to scaling too soon, beware these common missteps that can endanger your company

In 2016, I gave technical advice to a first-time CEO and entrepreneur building a seed-funded food delivery marketplace. In my view, every tech choice the company had made under his direction was wrong.

He believed in “empowering the engineer” and let the company’s first engineer choose the framework (Scala/Play) because it was what that engineer wanted to use — not because it made sense for the company, the company’s use case, or its recruiting pool. Much of the early technical work had been outsourced. The company’s product road map was also wildly optimistic (building web and mobile concurrently) despite the…


As engineers, we widely discuss exploits on the technology systems we manage. It’s time to do the same for exploits of our personal information sources.

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In 2015, I found myself talking to a smart entrepreneur who had just raised millions of dollars in venture capital from a prominent venture capital (VC) firm. He was flying high after getting substantial press and recruiting a number of early employees. His business also wholly depended on a popular open source project.

As part of his strategy, the CEO gave a core open source developer in the project equity. With this, he boasted that he would get critical information sooner, influence the roadmap for his company’s benefit, and recruit developers from the project to his company

I was doubtful…

Nemil Dalal

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