Durian and the Value Chain

Duran fruit in tree, Borneo

While researching my latest book “Blockchain Hurricane: Origins, Applications and Future of Blockchain and Cryptocurrency” in summer 2019, I came across an article from Fintechnews Singapore that intrigued me. “Millions of Durians Will Be Tracked on the Blockchain for Thailand’s Largest Durian Exporter,” it said. Having eaten the legendary smelly fruit (once and once only)…

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E-Voting systems under the spotlight

E-voting

E-voting has been under the spotlight in the past few months, and as the world moves inexorably online in the face of COVID-19, how close are we to finding a real solutions? The adverse publicity around an apparently hastily-built voting app made all the wrong headlines as chaos ensued at the Iowa caucases. After all,…

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Blocked Borders

UK EU Border

The one certainty around the January 31st Brexit milestone is that there is going to be an awful lot of work to do in the coming year and beyond. The time has come to flesh out the details of our future relationships and establish the systems and processes which will help the country’s infrastructure and…

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Getting to Truth on the Blockchain

Cobweb representing the web of truth on the blockchain

The second phase of the enquiry into the tragic Grenfell Tower fire begins today. As the BBC reports, the first phase found that the cladding work on the tower did not comply with building regulations, and the role of the second phase is to unpick the complex records held by seven different contractors to determine accountability.…

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Is Magic Internet Money going mainstream?

magic internet money

Spoilers: No. We are not all going to be using our cryptocurrency of choice on a daily basis any time soon. Here in our comfortable first world existence, the vast majority do not have a need for an alternative to established national currencies. However, there are emerging patterns and pockets of adoption which merit scrutiny.…

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Happy Birthday Bitcoin. Here’s to all the family!

Happy Birthday Bitcoin

Bitcoin celebrated its eleventh birthday on January 3rd, 2020, the anniversary of the creation of its Genesis Block. The first working peer-to-peer system of electronic cash was born into turbulent times. In that original block lies a hidden message which reads: “The Times 03/Jan/2009 Chancellor on brink of second bailout for banks”. It is generally…

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Diversity across a decade

With eleven days left of a turbulent ten years, I’m following the fashion of reflection but looking ahead to the promise of the impending Twenties. In January 2010 I was comfortable in a senior financial position with a FTSE 100 subsidiary. Today, I’m in the process of writing my fifth book (fiction) and awaiting publication…

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Whither the future of money?

SXSW Crypto events

As cryptocurrencies gain both ground and notoriety, questions are increasingly asked about the future of money. I confronted this in my 2017 novel Bitcoin Hurricane, imagining a near future where digital and fiat currencies trade side by side in the money markets, and banks still have a role to play in our lives. Austin’s SXSW…

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Nifty Moves: Blockchain news from SXSW

Three Cryptokitties

Is it hype, or is there something in it? The innovation spawned by cryptocurrency and its underlying distributed ledger technology is matched only by the scepticism that surrounds wild claims of future potential, and by the scams which arose in the Wild West of the 2017 bull run and ICO fundraising. The sector is beginning…

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The Innovation Game

Chess

Science fiction, fantasy, computer games, and chess. My children are all over these, playing hard and imagining new worlds. As we start to face adult responsibilities, it’s sometimes hard to hold on to the absolute joy of play, but discussions around the development of artificial intelligence at this year’s South by South West (SXSW) festival…

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