Melissa Kwan
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What is a blockchain technology?

The blockchain is an undeniably brilliant invention, made by person or group of people that go by name Satoshi Nakamoto. Since then it has evolved into something more significant. But, the essential question, what everyone has been asking is: what is a blockchain? By allowing information to be transferred and not copied, blockchain creates a new revolution on the internet. Initially, it has been used in digital trading currencies, but now IT experts are trying to find the new uses and potential for this technology.

Often you can hear that bitcoin is called digital gold and for a good reason. To date, the entire value of the currency is close to $9 billion. On the other hand, the blockchains can make other types of digital value. Like with the internet, you don’ need to know how it works, to be able to use it. post10aHowever, having the basic knowledge of this technology can help you progress further.

The blockchain isn’t only for bitcoin

The blockchain is a massive database, that is validated by a broad community, rather than one authority. It collects the records of all transactions and makes it public. Each block has a number of transactions recorded, and the chain feature connects them all. When the records are created, they are validated by a distributed network of computers and linked with the previous entry in the chain. In this way, they are making a chain of blocks or blockchain.

Considering that blockchain is controlled by a massive network of computers, it means that no one has the complete control over its history. This is an essential feature because no one can go back and alter the things. In this case, the blockchain is a public ladder that cannot be easily tampered with. Even though blockchain is often connected to digital currencies, many organization are trying to use it for other purposes. They are attempting to establish a voting system and implement its features into a health care system.

post10bWhere did the blockchain come from?

Although the blockchain technology has been efficiently used in the last decade, its origin goes back fat further. In 1976, a paper on New Directions in Cryptography argued about the idea of a mutual distributed ladder, which is what blockchain is now. But, it would take us a couple of decades and powerful computers to fully implement this technology and make these ideas useful.

To validate the blocks in the same way traditional transactions are approved, you need the help of blockchain employees, in this case, the assistance of powerful computers. Considering they need to have an excellent configuration, they are often expensive, consume a lot of electricity, and you need to keep them cool. This is one of the reasons why bitcoin acted as an excellent start to the introduction of blockchain technology. It will always reward the users who are taking part in this process, which is called mining. Every time people validate a transaction, they make money.



How to trade cryptocurrencies?

Cryptocurrencies are very popular nowadays, and many investors are interested in this type of investment. But there are a lot of risks connected to digital currencies and a lot of people aren’t brave enough to trade them. Now beginners are more interested than regular traders. This is one of the reasons why we what to present you this guide. The two most important things you need to review is the cryptocurrency wallet and cryptocurrency exchange. After all, the safety of your money is essential. In the last couple of years, the cryptocurrency market has considered substantial damage with numerous hacker attacks.

What to know before you start trading

post9aA cryptocurrency exchange is not yet a part of the regular stock exchange. But, we would suggest you use Coinbase and GDXA, the pro version of Coinbase with lower fees. You need to keep in mind that neither of these are the same as Wall Street and its exchange.

Beginners might prefer to trade cryptocurrency stocks on the stock market. The most notable bitcoin stock is GBTC. But, keep in mind that GBTC only trades at a premium, which means that bitcoins are cheaper, that buying shares here. This will not be an ideal solution for many people. Also, cryptocurrency trading market is open 24/7, even days in a week.

The easiest way is to trade your coins at Coinbase, but you can only sell, buy and store bitcoins, Ethereum, litecoin, bitcoin cash and coinbase. On the other hand, if you are serious about trading other coins, then you can check out GDAX, Bittrex, Binance, and Kraken.

In 2018, the cryptocurrency market will be volatile, which means you can make a fortune, but also, you can lose all. You should only choose the wallets and exchanges that reputable and reliable if you want to avoid frauds.

Cryptocurrency mining

post9bYou don’t always have to buy coins, considering their price. There is also another way; you can invest in digital currencies via cryptocurrency mining. This is a legit way, and you only need a powerful computer, and you can start right away. For example, an average investor will want to trade USD for coins, and they want to avoid the complications and investments through mining. In this case, your job is to validate transactions and earn money.

How to start with a trade?

First of all, you need to choose a reputable company that will provide you an exchange and wallet, just to keep things simple. Beginners should also trade prominent coins, such as Bitcoin and Ethereum. But, for this trade, you need to invest a lot of money. It’s always best to choose the exchange located in your country, for example, in the U.S. you can choose Coinbase. After you master Coinbase, you can switch to next one. Beginners shouldn’t perform margin trading, unless they know that it is and at least you accumulate some skills. Considering its stability, cryptocurrencies are extremely volatile and you need to careful.


Cryptocurrency for beginners


When digital currencies appeared on the market, many people were skeptical towards this type of investment. A small number of them, who were brave enough to invest in bitcoin, now are rich people. In 2017, digital currencies reached their peak, and now many people are interested in investing their money in cryptocurrencies, but the process is more challenging than it was a couple of years ago. But, if you are a beginner and you want to explore crypto, then we have prepared a small guide for you. So, here is what you need to know about digital currencies.


post8aTo trade any type of cryptocurrency, you need a wallet to store them. In this case, bitcoins need to go in bitcoin’s wallet. Wallets behave like a crypto bank account. But, how can you get an e-wallet? The easiest way is to sign up for an exchange that allows you to buy, trade or sell digital currencies. In this case, you will have an opportunity to generate a wallet for every token that you traded. For instance, Coinbase will provide you wallet for bitcoin, Ethereum, litecoin, and bitcoin cash. You need to understand that crypto wallets don’t behave like physical one. They are just a secure window into the blockchain so that you can track your transactions. But, keep in mind what type of wallet you are choosing because it will protect your investments and money.


If you want to start trading cryptocurrencies, then you need to choose an appropriate exchange. But, considering there is a large number of them on the market, you will have a hard time deciding the right one. In the last couple of months, we have been the witnesses of many frauds and hacker attacks, so it’s still risky to invest in them, but this doesn’t stop people. There are a couple of steps which will help you choose the right exchange. First of all, select the exchange that is located in your country. Bitcoin is still the most common trading pair, and if you are to invest in other digital currencies, you will only be able to trade and buy it against bitcoin. Most exchanges aren’t regulated, so you are risking here. Compared to traditional stock exchanges, crypto exchanges are open 24/7, 365 days.

post8bPopular exchanges across the globe

Coinbase – located in the U.S., Coinbase is one of the largest exchanges in the world. Investors can trade bitcoin, bitcoin cash, Ethereum, and litecoin and you can buy them directly with your credit card. But you need to have a $250 weekly limit.

Bittrex – another U.S. exchange and even more popular than others because it offers more than 1300 alternative cryptocurrencies. You cannot deposit directly, and you will need to buy bitcoin or Ethereum and transfer them into Bittrex before you can trade.

Binance – this exchange is located in Hong Kong, and it was only launched in 2017. However, their platform became very popular due to a large volume of trades.


Why are algorithms so important?


Many beginners and software developers ask this question at an early stage of their career because they believe in things they see, which is not the case with algorithms. In reality, we know the result, such as iOS, Windows apps, Android apps and many other. But, behind that process algorithms stand. Another question that imposes is why do we make algorithms? To explain this question more comfortable, we will use a simple example. Let’s image you are building a house out of bricks. You have a general idea how the house should look like, how many rooms should have and how much materials you need. But, you aren’t an expert, and you could build something that looks like a house, but, can it stand winds, waves, weather conditions, and earthquakes? The same rule you can apply to programs when you write them without algorithms

Runtime analysis

post7bOne of the essential aspects of algorithms is their speed. It is easy to come up with an algorithm to resolve a problem, but, if it’s too slow, it’s back to drawing board. Considering that speed of an algorithm depends on where it is run, as well as the precise details of its use, developers usually talk about the runtime relative to the size of the input.

Google search algorithms

Google in the most popular search engine in the world, and it generates the millions of search inquiries every day. Some of them are complex, while other are simple. But, in order to manage all these queries, it has to use a variety of algorithms such as indexing algorithms, safe-search algorithms, site and page quality algorithms, Google instant and many more. They all have one thing in common, to show the results according to users’ requests.

Online money transactions

post7aOnline transactions have become the easiest way for individuals and companies to pay their bills and buy some accessories. But, many of us don’t know who our bank account and pin number are processed by banking gateway while performing a transaction. A lot of service providers use secure gateways for banks to complete any transactions safely. This helps companies like Master Card and Visa to keep their users’ information, such as card number, password, and bank statement safely. This entire process is managed through a series of algorithms that provide people reliable and save use. Without them, you won’t be able to make any online payment and still keep your safety.

Space search programs

The use of computer algorithms plays an essential role in space search programs. Scientists have to use massive calculations, and they are managed by high-end mainframe computers, which are enriched with sophisticated algorithms. Algorithms also decide which processor, Intel i7, i3, i5, is the best for any complex problem. We are in the age of algorithms because they solve our everyday tasks and we won’t be able to live with them. They make our life more comfortable and, in the future, they will be able to predict our behavior.



Top four real algorithms that dominate our world


If you are an algorithm beginner, then you must be wondering who we can explain them, what are they and how they impact our society? In fact, algorithms are all around us, and they make the digital world functional. It is essential to mention that algorithms aren’t only used in computing sciences but they are a mathematical entity. They were first discovered in 1600 BC, but the modern use started around 1930s. In this article, we will explain the top four algorithms that rule the world and why without them our life wouldn’t be possible.

Merge sort, quick sort, and heap sort

post6aWhat is the best algorithm to manage elements? It all depends on what you need, and that’s why we put the three more frequently used algorithms which are used to sort items. Maybe you have preferences, but three of them are equally good. The merge sort algorithm is one of the essential algorithms nowadays. It uses divide and conquers approach to solve problems. John von Neumann invented this algorithm in 1945. The quicksort has a different approach to sorting issues. It can use in-place partition algorithms, but the problem with them is that they aren’t stable sort, except for sorting RAM-based arrays. The last one is the heap sort which uses priority queue that decreases time in the data.

Fourier Transform and Fast Fourier Transform

Our entire digital world uses three simple, but very potent algorithms, which change signals form their time domain into their frequency domain and vice versa. In fact, you are seeing and reading this articles thanks to these algorithms. The internet, Wi-Fi connection, smartphones, PCs, satellites and other devices have a computer inside and use these algorithms to function, and you can’t get a degree in science without studying this type of algorithms.

post6bDijkstra’s algorithm

It is safe to say that internet wouldn’t be functional without this algorithm. This graph search algorithm is used in various applications and, in this case, the problem can be modeled and presented as a graph, and you have to find the shortest path between two nodes. Considering that science has advanced, and today we can use better solutions of finding the shortest route, but Dijkstra’s algorithm is still used because of its stability in systems which require it.

RSA algorithm

If there weren’t cryptography and cybersecurity, then the internet wouldn’t be as important as it is today. The security can be observed from different perspectives, you may think security in the era of NSA and other intelligence agencies or are you really that naïve to believe that you are safe on the Internet. People need to be safe to spend their money. After all, you wouldn’t fill out your credit card number on the web, if you know it’s not secure. In this case, RSA algorithm remains as the most important in the field of cryptography. It shapes who cryptography works, and it’s a solution to a simple, but also challenging problems.

What are algorithms and how are they used?


Algorithms represent processes or set of rules which are followed in calculations or other math problems. They solve problems, primarily by computers. Algorithms are essential for website ranking in the world’s biggest search engine. They have the power to teach a robot to perform certain operations, and they are even involved in the stock market. In many ways, algorithms shape the life we know and make it easier for us. But, what are they precisely, where did they come from and how will they determine the human future? This would be a small guide through the world of algorithms to get you familiar with them.

The history of algorithms

post5aThe first time the term algorithm was used was back in 780 by a Persian mathematician Al-Khwarizmi. He was also an astronomer, geographer, and scholar. But, the origin of algorithms goes even further in the past. The first recorded mathematical algorithms were in 1600 BC when Babylonians developed them for factorization and finding square roots. However, the modern algorithms appeared in the late 1920s and were developed through 1930s. The first one who introduced the recursive functions was Godel-Herbrand-Kleene.

Features of algorithms

They must stop at a particular time – for example, if your task is to make a meal, then the algorithm is a meal recipe. Here you are instructed what to do, how to prepare, what ingredients to mix, what temperature to set and when to stop making, to cook a delicious dish. The same rule applies to algorithms.

It must have detailed step-by-step instructions – if your task is to locate some building, then the algorithm is a set of directions which will clearly explain where to go and what to do to find the building.

It must prove effectiveness – if your task is to build a toy car, then the algorithm is your instruction manual, which will guide you through this process. It will help you assemble the parts, and you will end up with a functional toy.

post5bDominant algorithms

In the digital world, everything is connected, from search engines, social networks to online marketing. In this case, the study of relations between different entities is essential. There are a lot of approaches and features of link analysis, and each of them can be an algorithm, although the bases are similar. For example, think about Facebook’s friend suggestions, YouTube video recommendations, Google’s page rank. Even though the parameters may be different, but the math behind them is the same. The algorithms are working behind our screens, and average users aren’t aware of it.

Data compression

From zip to mp3 and from JPEG to MPEG-2, these algorithms compress data and make systems more affordable, more efficient and more accessible to transmit. Data compression is often used in video games, videos, music, cloud computing, data storage, databases and any files you download to your computer. This type of algorithm will save you a lot of space and make your system run smoothly.

The freeze app – What is this app and does it exist

Nowadays, you can find apps for almost anything, and some of them will freeze your phone, maybe they are infected, or it’s just the negligence of the developer. For instance, the app might try to perform some math operation, such as dividing five by 0. On the other hand, your math teacher will tell you that 5/0 does not make sense, but when a modern computer meets this expression it will freeze and in the worst-case scenario, crashing your operating system with it. Once your phone freezes, there is not much you can do, but to restart the device and after that remove the app from your smartphone.

But, then the main questing is, why such bad apps exit in the first place and can you test them for such behavior before the use.

The Freeze App

post4aLet’s imagine that some software company managed to solve this issue, where there is a Freeze app who will test all other apps and determine whether they will freeze your phone. This type of app might work by performing experiments for the suspicious apps in a simulated environment, without stopping your phone. Or, it will just deduce the input app’s behavior from inspecting its source code. For average users, it’s not relevant how Freeze app manages what it promises. Its use would be straightforward to use. First, you will have to select the suspicious app you want to test, and it has to be installed on your smartphone. Then Freeze app will do its analytics, which might take a couple of minutes and present you the final result.

The paradox app

As soon as Freeze app gets to store, developers will try to build a Paradox app, and its primary purpose will be to rectify mistakes the Freeze app makes. So, here is how it should look like: you run the Freeze app to in inspect the Paradox, if it turns out OK, then freeze your phone, for instance by computing five by 0. On the other hand, if the Freeze shows not OK, then declare Freeze detected that Paradox freezes and terminate the process.post4b

Why doesn’t Freeze app exist?

There are a couple of reason why this type of app doesn’t exist. Either the Paradox app is malicious and freezes your phone, or it’s not. But, we will show you both cases. For example, let’s assume that Paradox is corrupted and freezes your phone. In this case, the Freeze app will detect this condition, and in Paradox’s code, computation proceeds from line one to three and Paradox will show the information “Freeze detected that Paradox freezes” and it will end this process. According to our assumptions, the phone did not freeze, and we can reject this proposition.

In the second example, the Paradox doesn’t freeze our phone. The Freeze app will determine this and Paradox’s computation will continue with line two and freeze the phone, which again contradicts our assumptions. Based on this, we can end our discussion stating that Freeze app doesn’t exist.


Including Git Revision Identifiers in LaTeX


In the last couple of years, LaTeX software has become very popular for the production of technical and scientific documentation. This is a high-quality typesetting system which is available as free software. The majority of LaTeX source files are under the revision control system Git. Git is additional software, and it allows you to do many things, but keep in mind that Git doesn’t modify source files, while other systems do. For instance, you can ask Subversions to replace the placeholders $Revision in the committed source file with the latest revision number. This is a handy solution for presenting figures and dates in your LaTeX documents.

Git’s representatives often state that any type of modification of source file is pure evil. This feature is absent from Git, and every betokens moral corruption. In this case, the client’s program, which is LaTeX, is responsible for any modification and revision information in the output. Git only makes this information available, but it doesn’t change the source. Stephen Henning’s vc batch contains a number of scripts that extract modified information from different version control systems, involving Git, and make it available as LaTeX macros. In this case, we use vc.tex to take information and the primary LaTeX source file remains untouched by Git.

post3aWe have another rule, which might be interesting, and it involves running git code to produce vc.code. But, the hardest thing for people is to get the dependencies right, and we will break down this entire process. The input file vc.tex needs to be regenerated whenever it predates the last commit. If you have a good understanding of Git internals than the command that requires the modification of time .git/logs/HEAD, should provide you are the reliable timestamp for the last commit. You can make a rule for vc.tex depend on that. Considering this a cheap operation, you will be able to generate vc.tex anew every time you run pdf latex. Only, in this case, every move you make will recompile the source because the initial file vc.tex has changed. If you want to avoid this complication, then you should leave out vc.tex from dependencies for $(latexfile).pdf. So, when you commit, which changes the revision number and not source files, the process will not lead to an automatic recompile. In this case, the LaTeX document will only show newly revised information, whenever it’s edited after that revision.

LaTeX is a document preparation software for high-quality typesetting. It is commonly used for medium to large technical or scientific documents and can be used for any form of publishing. You need to keep in mind that LaTeX is not a word processing software and it won’t help you with the appearance. LaTeX focuses more on the right content and enables you to deliver accurate information. This software is based on the idea that document design is to be left to document designers, while authors should pay attention to writing and delivering high-quality content.

Shouryya Ray and the press

A German 16-year old has become a worldwide phenomenon and the first person who managed to solve a mathematical problem that Sir Isaac Newton posed more than 300 years ago. Shouryya Ray worked on how to calculate the precise path of a projectile under gravity and subject to air resistance. The Indian-borne teen reposted to have solved the problem while working on a school project. German society awarded the young man by giving him a prize for contribution to the science and labeled him as a genius. Considering he solved the math problem while doing a school project his research is put down to curiosity and student’s naivety.

His family moved to Germany when he was 12 years old. The boy’s father got a job as an engineer at a technical college and he that his father had a significant influence on his, showing him love towards math and taught this calculus when he was six years old. Even Mr. Ray’s father told the media that his son’s mathematical powers quickly surpassed his own, showing considerable knowledge and progress, which is rare for such a young boy. The father said that Ray never discussed the project with him and that he used math equations that are even beyond his reach.

post2bNewton posed this problem 300 years ago, which relates to movement of projectiles through the air. Before Mr. Ray’s solution, mathematicians and scientist were able to offer an only partial answer, but no one managed to solve the problem in full. That’s why the public became shocked when a young man offered a solution. If that wasn’t enough, Mr. Ray also managed to solve an additional problem which involves the collision of a body with a wall, that was posed in the 19th century. Experts and scientists say that these solutions will contribute to better precision in areas as ballistics.

On the other hand, a university professor Jürgen Voigt states that Newton never posed a problem. He said that the movement of the body or object under the influence of gravity and friction in the air is managed by a specific differential equation. Moreover, the theory of average differential equations yields that equation can be solved and that solution is presented in particular form. When he says average equation, he thinks that textbooks contain this approach and it is taught in third-year courses at the university. He and his coworkers published a four-page report where they tried to contextualize Ray’s work. Voigt emphasized that Ray deserved a prize for his work and that his solution should be appreciated, considering it’s coming from a 16-year old boy. We are left to see, what kind of discoveries will Ray make in the future.

Cryptocurrency news – what’s new in the market


Last year was terrific for the cryptocurrency, and many investors have managed to achieve massive profits. Everyone talked about bitcoin and how to invest in this currency, but it seems that at the beginning of 2018, the hype has died down. We still remember that significant crackdown of one of the biggest Japanese exchanges and somehow that made people think about the future and whether they should invest the money in cryptocurrency. Disappointing prices in January and February have apparently driven many bitcoin trades to avoid checking on their exchange accounts. The latest polls indicate sharp decline month over month.

Exchange traffic decreases rapidly

The total number of visits to the websites of significant cryptocurrency exchanges had been reduced significantly in February. Based on many research, the visits have spiked in December 2017 and January 2018 and fallen by half in February. post1aThe total number of visits was down 49% in February, from 123.5 million to 63.1 million, after reaching 169.5 million in December 2017. Even though bitcoin had a rocky start, it doesn’t mean it’s all bad news for this digital currency. Many experts predict that bitcoin will recover by the end of the year.

Supply and demand will be a determining factor

Some analysts who are forecasting the prices say that we need to review the supply and demand factors and that we can expect the rise in price up to $20.000. They based this number on supply because the only limited number of coins are mined each year. On the other hand, without a firm regulation and guidance in cryptocurrency’s valuations, this price is prone to changes. Moreover, bitcoin investors expect positive developments in the market, claiming this is just a temporary crisis. There will be a lot of innovation in trading, starting with a bitcoin payment as legal paying method.

Is crash a possible option

Like with any exchange, we can’t predict the crash on one currency or asset, but it’s possible. In case of bitcoin, many analysts are wary of the crash, and this is one major drawback for many investors. They are afraid to invest their money, and this trend will continue in 2018. No one can predict the crash of bitcoin, but there is always a possibility it will happen sometime in the future. While these predictions can be highly unreliable, there is some truth in them, and you will just have to follow price pattern signals.

The future isn’t certain

The future of bitcoin and cryptocurrencies is anything but sure, but it’s reasonable to assume that at least for the short term, the price of bitcoin will continue to rise. On the other hand, the investors need to be very careful because in 2017 we have been witnesses to some of the nastiest feuds and many investors got ripped off due to hacker attacks. It’s still early to say, but this type of investment may become a safe haven for investors’ money.