3 pieces of advice for millennials trying to make it in corporate America

Welcome to Silicon Valley, the land of artificial intelligence, high-speed networks, start-ups, flip flops in the workplace, and executive egos. Here there is no such thing as a “set work time.” There is no such thing as “no, we can’t”. Your options for success and career growth are endless. Here is the utopia for learning and growth at whatever type of technology advancement you’re interested in- maybe it’s software or hardware, or maybe you want to grow your soft skills in human resources, public relations, operations, etc. There’s an opportunity for you. This is the age millennials flourish, and our colleagues are envious of us. NOW IS OUR CHANCE! Here are three tips I’ve learned my first four years in Corporate (tech) America.

  1. Say “Yes”

I’ve heard it too many times to count on both hands. “You’re not like other millennials, you work too hard.”

The misconception that millennials have zero work ethic is the rumor we have to END. And now is our chance. Say “YES” to the next challenging opportunity. Opportunities don’t grow on trees, they’re not given out like candy, they’re a gift. Say “YES” to take the risk. Don’t know how to execute? Don’t understand the concept? Luckily for us, millennials are digitally sound. We’re pretty handy at a quick google search, PLUS we’re the most digitally social generation yet… use your network, and the information at your fingertips to help tackle that next big assignment. Don’t get me wrong, it will be challenging. It’ll test your patience. You may even find yourself questioning “why” this XYZ company. So… don’t forget to listen. Your colleagues with 10, 20, 30 + years of experience have some invaluable advice, that more often than not they’re willing to bestow upon us.

Saying “YES” might just land you into that next big job that was previously thought to be 10 years down the line…

just say “YES!”

2. Embrace your fountain of youth

“Oh, my daughter graduated that same year!”

There is nothing more precious than youth. Working in corporate America, in technology, and as a woman, I often find myself as the only woman in the room. The youngest person in the room. By sometimes 20 years. That’s intimidating. I found myself always questioning my experience, my education, and eventually my worth at the company, until one day I realized they all wanted what I have, YOUTH. We are the generation that grew up with the internet, with social media, and with technology advancing at dizzying speeds. We are the future. Be confident and embrace your open mindset, we have the intangible!

3. If you’re bored in your job, chances are you’re not growing. Take a risk.

This rumor is true. If we’re not challenged, we’ll move on. Maybe not tomorrow, but chances are we won’t spend our entire career with the same company, maybe not even half of it, maybe not even a fourth. Before each major transition so far, I’ve found myself feeling stagnate, not moving forward and not learning at a steady pace. While in today’s economy, taking a new job can seem risky, or maybe you feel “safe” in your current job. What I can say is, the most growth I’ve had is when I feel uncomfortable, when I immediately don’t know the strategy or the plan. My key message for you is, don’t be afraid to feel uncomfortable, and take the risk for that sweet, new job you might not be qualified for, because really what do you have to lose? We’re millennials after all. 🙂

Nothing says risk-taking more than climbing El Capitan in Yosemite National Park

Why Our Sons Should Definitely Be Watching Carmen Sandiego

It’s not every day, or even every month that my son and I are infatuated with the same TV show, but the new Carmen Sandiego changes everything! I’m feeling pretty damn hip right now TBH because Netflix’s new re-boot of the iconic character has only been out for a few weeks and I have seen it all. Cutting edge — à la mode — Zeitgeist — finger on the pulse — that’s me.

The show impressed me so much, I’d watch it again. I can’t wait for the live action movie and the next season to come out! Season two is already confirmed! I’m becoming a total fan-girl and getting a red coat and fedora for my Halloween costume (maybe for everyday wear,) maybe even a temporary tattoo!

I don’t usually get this excited about a TV show. Is it nostalgia? Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego stands out in my memory as a show I used to watch on PBS when I was little. But all that’s left of it is the song and some vague notions about geography and maybe math?

So, how do I love this iteration of a character that has morphed from several game versions to TV and now streaming on Netflix?

This is Carmen. Still image from Carmen Sandiego on Netflix.

Let me literally recount for you the ways:

  • Carmen (Red), the eponymous hero, is a female main character who is confident, daring, whip-smart, talented, principled, and a kick-ass thief for a good cause. She has close trusted friends who all stick together, but none of them are perfect. They make mistakes, they experience conflict, they improvise as needed, and they learn.
  • Carmen is Latina. Representation matters! There just aren’t enough strong mainstream female characters, let alone Latinas out there. Carmen is an Argentinian orphan who was raised on the Isle of VILE, the hideout/HQ for a secretive group of criminal masterminds and their crime school.
  • Carmen Sandiego, the show, in addition to the hero, is Feminist AF. It gives feminism a well-deserved place in the spotlight with action, wit, intelligence, and equality all wrapped up in a trendy, modern bow for the viewing pleasure of children and adults alike. My six-year-old son LOVES this show and I am thrilled.
  • Even though she leaves them behind when she realizes what they’re really up to, the people who raised her are highly diverse — villain representation matters too! There are three women and two men: a large, imposing, yet maternal white woman, an eccentric (possibly) Indian woman mad scientist, a glamorous countess, an Asian male martial arts master, and a pale creepy old psychopath guy.
  • Good and evil isn’t portrayed as black and white. Carmen’s tech angel, Player, is a “white-hat” hacker. Carmen is a shadowy thief who steals from other thieves and returns the spoils of her work to their rightful owners. But she only becomes a “good” thief after she does some soul searching when she discovers that VILE’s mission hurts people and takes cultural treasures away from the masses. ACME functions “in the grey” or something to that effect is explicitly stated at one point.

Ivy & Zack. Still image from Carmen Sandiego on Netflix.
  • Zack is an admirably NON-TOXIC white man with a sensitive stomach who isn’t afraid to take orders from a woman and even to dress in drag to help execute a mission successfully. His older sister Ivy gives the viewer another positive representation on the femininity continuum with her more butch fashion choices, and demeanor.
  • ACME, the super secret organization trying to stop VILE, is headed up by an unapologetically fierce black woman, Chief, who appears exclusively by hologram projection. She recognizes the intelligence of underling Julia Argent. When this happens, Argent claims she was not working alone and refuses to take all the credit for herself. Her deductions are almost always right on the money — as her name would seem to suggest.

Agent Devineaux asserting his undeserved authority over Julia Argent…AGAIN. Still image from Carmen Sandiego on Netflix.
  • Agent Chase Devineaux, former Interpol agent turned ACME investigator, is a hyper-masculine, mansplaining, French douchebag, who rarely listens to his more thoughtful female subordinate, Julia Argent, and he frequently suffers the humiliating consequences of his stubbornness. (I’m married to a wonderful Frenchie who is nothing like Devineaux, for the record.) While he doesn’t change his behavior much, Devineaux seems to gain some consciousness of his problem throughout the season admitting that his assistant will probably be running ACME one day.

Dash Haber. Still image from Carmen Sandiego.
  • Dash Haber is another refreshing male character. He may be working for Countess Cleo on the wrong side of crime, but his dandy/fop persona is deliciously non-binary.
  • There is cool educational content: difficult moral quandaries, geography, problem solving, culture, humanity in general…
  • It gets kids thinking. My son remarked to me, “That inspector should be able to follow the clues better if he’s an inspector. Argent is much smarter. Why would they choose him if he’s not good at the job?” I’m still swooning from his budding feminist powers of observation. Later he asked, “Did you know that Ivy is a girl? And that other one with red hair is a boy? So, there’s two girls and a boy?” I reminded him that player is a boy, too. He’s still way into categorizing as best he can to understand his world, but I love that he’s seeing multiple ways of being female, male, non-binary, good, bad, and somewhere in between.

I could go on…for a while. But instead, I’ll wish you happy viewing and let me know your thoughts.

Thanks for reading!

A slightly different version of this post originally appeared on www.livingimperfection.com.

It Takes A Few Clicks to Spot a Suitable Calculus Assignment Help

Being a hard discipline, calculus is not easy to understand even for the students with a solid math background. You definitely find yourself surrounded by a number of difficulties if you lose attention in understanding its basics. It is quite possible to search for the pre-calculus help while looking for having proper command over the early stages of higher education in mathematics.

Calculus Assignment Help

There are many students who struggle with understanding various aspects of this subject. However, they avoid hiring the services of a professional calculus assignment help service despite knowing the fact it will be difficult for them to achieve success in their academic career.

Differential and integral are the two areas in which this subject of mathematics is divided. You are taught about the concept of instantaneous rate of change in the differential calculus area, while the concept of total change is discussed in the integral calculus. Engineering and physics are the two common subjects where these two areas of the calculus are used in order to explain a number of important things.

There are many individuals who face difficulty in making their dreams come true if they are not given the instant assignment help at the time when they need it the most. The services provided by the professionals make sure that all your problems related to assignments are sorted out timely and perfectly. They maintain a huge team of writers who are well-versed in their field and know how to complete the homework before the deadlines.

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NGRX get data from Firestore (part 2)

Part 1 of this blog is here.

In this episode, I want to discuss the different possibilities to load data from Firestore into an NGRX environment using the angularfire2 library. There are a lot of examples out there which are individually discussed and analysed, but there is no comparison with other procedures and combinations.

Now after some time coding on the server side, I came back and started working on angular again. And I faced the same problem.

Searching the web for new inspirations I found following interesting solution which I am gonna use in my next project.

In this example, the idea is the same as my first solution in part 1. Listening for state changes of the firestore api in an effect class.

Action Stream:

  • IN: Query Effect fetches data from db and updates store with actions handles by the reducer
  • OUT: Create, Update and Delete Effect deals with the database. The Query Effect is still listening on changes and updates the store

But what I don’t like is the fact that when starting the application the effect will trigger “add” actions for all individual items. Let’s say we are loading 1000 items then we will see 1000 triggered actions. That doesn’t look nice especially when using ngrx entity which has the addMany function.

So I tried to figure out a solution which bundles “added” actions from firestore into a list and fire one action to “addMany”.

@Effect()
query$: Observable<Action> = this.actions$.pipe(
ofType(AccountApiActionTypes.QUERY),
switchMap(action => {
console.log(action);
return this.db.getAllAcountsAsStateChanges();
}),
mergeMap((actions: any) => {
if (actions && actions.length > 1) {
const addActions = actions.filter((val: any) => val.type === 'added');
const otherActions = actions.filter((val: any) => val.type !== 'added');
this.store.dispatch(
new AddedAll(addActions.map(
(item: any) => {
return {
id: item.payload.doc.id,
...item.payload.doc.data()
};
})));
return otherActions;
}
return actions;
}),
map((action: any) => {
return {
type: `[API Account] ${action.type}`,
payload: {
id: action.payload.doc.id,
...action.payload.doc.data()
}
};
})
);

So, what the code is doing here is fetching the data state changes from firestore and hand the list over to mergeMap.

The list gets checked off a size over 1 and the “added” actions get filtered out from the list. On init there will be only added actions when fetching the whole lot from the database.

Then a separate action is dispatched to trigger the addMany function on the entity and gets the list of all “added” actions mapped into the model.

Returning the other actions will leave them to the map operator where all the individual actions are returned.

BUT NO MORE 1000 “added whatever” ACTION CALLS.

The query idea and most of the code comes from a lesson on AngularFire called “AngularFire2 State Changes With NgRx”. There the query action is dispatched in the init function of a component. In my case, I prefer to load the data when the effect is initialised as below.

ngrxOnInitEffects(): Action {
return new Query();
}

Everything stays in the effect class and the component only has to use the selector and dispatch actions on create, modify and delete.

The dispatch of the AddedAll function in the effect could be setup differently with some rxjs operator and avoid using the store service in the effect. But right now I couldn’t figure it out. If you have any suggestion I appreciate your comments.

How ML differs from Statistics

Classical Statistics in University Under-graduate courses or even Graduate courses starts with descriptive statistics and then moves into distribution fitting and then all the way to complex multivariate analysis. Essentially covering hypothesis testing, correlation, regression , factor analysis and Principal Component analysis. 
 Statistics assumes a lot of a-priori knowledge about the data and its properties and does not necessarily cover a lot of trial and error or even tinkering.

Machine Learning in new age looks at wide array of techniques and algorithms which themselves learn from the data. Deep Machine Learning, Supervised Learning and Reinforcement Learning covers very interesting algorithm which learn themselves from the wide array of data. So data becomes input and model becomes output. This happens without any human intervention ( except in supervised learning). This is the real beauty of ML over conventional statistics. Although new age ML ( covering CNN/Deep Learning/Reinforcement Learning) draws a lot from statistics, cognitive biology, neuroscience, mathematics and control theory, most of the ML applications have been very new and have large technical and business impact.

In Reinforcement Learning classical optimization functions are used and behaviorism invested in psychology by Skinner comes int play in terms of “reward and punishment”. So behavior of the RL Algorithm is shaped in the same way a child’s behaviour is shaped by parents. Eventually use of Dynamic Programming from the classical optimization ( Operations Research) is used along with Bellman’s optimality conditions and MDP ( Markov Decision Process)

RL ensures that you can start “learning” with minimum domain or problem knowledge. Algorithm has power to learn and come up with its parameters depending on the error conditioning and reward optimization. Multiple algorithms like Temporal Difference Learning, Deep ! Learning and Actor Critic Methods ( A3c) ensure that algorithms in RL have power to create truly domain independent ways to learn in many many new domains without need to have domain knowledge.

ML Tribe( collection of AI Scientists, Data Analysts, ML practitioners, Students, Professors and Industry Professionals) is significantly different from old school statistics in many ways. Statistics assumes a lot of knowledge about the system. Statistical thinking in many ways is top-down, a-priori thinking. ML( Broad umbrella of algorithms in RL, Deep Learning) thinking is inherently is posterior, does not assume much and is bottom-up. In many ways as Richard Dawkins puts it “ The Darwinian thinking is mindless, purposeless bottom-up processes involving R&D, Trial and Error and Tinkering all the way”. ML resembles our own biological evolution. The same way as biological evolution ML algorithms are also evolving. The big advantage is ML algorithms evolution is much faster unlike biological gradual, slow evolution.

ML works a lot like biological processes seen elsewhere in nature. Sometimes ML does not necessarily try to Optimize in the classical Optimization Sense ( finding the best possible solution from large scale solution space). ML tries a process of sophisticated tinkering which moves from finding one sub-optimal solution and then move ahead. This process ensures continuity in learning as well as learning becomes in many ways autonomous.

Statistics used to need a lot of careful sampling, sometimes meticulously planned data cleaning would pre-date a rigorous statistical analysis. ML works with existing data and tries to create inferences.

ML v/s Statistics

One of the families of ML algorithms, Bayesian Inferencing using basic Bayes Probability coupled with state-space generators like Monte Carlo simulation so that you create simulated data where data is non-existent or not accurate. ML algorithms this way build a kind of robustness against the Data Quality problems.

An emotional story of an Acid survivor will break you into tears

Image Courtesy: The Indian Express

“He changed my face…not my heart. He threw acid on my face…not on my dreams.” 
“I was a law student and a classical dancer. I was learning Western Dance at an institute. I used to give my performance at every cultural event organized by our college. Family, friends, dance…these were my life. I was an average student in my class and very good at co-curricular activities. Life was full of joy for me till he entered my life and turned my life upside down. I remember his name as “Ravi”. My senior. Proposed some girls several times and got rejected due to his arrogance and offensive nature towards everyone. The institute where I was learning western dance was beside his room. He used to peep girls dancing through his window and tease them despite many warnings from security. It all happened on Women’s day night when I was returning after my performance at a charity show for underprivileged. He was standing on the road holding a glass bottle anticipating for someone. I was returning from the institute and he started following me. I was nervous and suddenly he grabbed me towards him and assaulted me sexually. I was screaming with fear and pain but there was no one around. Then he tried to stab me. He threw acid on my face. My hands were also burnt as I tried to cover my face. I was unconscious then. When I got consciousness, I found myself in a hospital and my face was covered excluding my eyes. I cried a lot recalling everything that happened to me last night and tried to commit suicide with the knife lying beside the bed. The nurse stopped me and called the doctor and my friends. I was crying continuously and asked my friends how to continue my life as a dancer with my disfigured face. My skin was burning when tears started touching cheeks. One of my friends scolded me and spoke to me in this way, “You are never a loser. Be brave. The person who attacked you will cover his face, not you. If not as a dancer, be a choreographer and start an institute”. These words went deeper into my heart and there was a tremendous response from people to learn dance from me. And today, I’m satisfied with this National Award as Best Choreographer for a movie. To all those people who are showing me as an example for Acid attack victim, 
“I’m a survivor…not a victim. My success in my life is my sweetest revenge on him.”

Happy Women’s Day!

Growth Of Cryptocurrency Market Interdependent On Retail

Over the past year, Bitcoin has blown beyond proportion and have become one facet of online trading and investments that individuals have been looking towards. While Bitcoin is an online currency that only a select few knew how to mine, this cryptocurrency has turned into something entirely viable for good investments. In spite of its growing popularity, there is still a lot of mystery and uncertainness surrounding this cryptocurrency.

What Are Bitcoins?

If you are thinking of investing in Bitcoin, or are planning to pay for something using Bitcoin, it is important for you to understand the intricacies of this currency. The fact that Bitcoin is an online currency is well known, but how does something that exists only in the virtual world function in our society?

To be able to properly understand this, we must trace back to the roots of Bitcoin and how they came into existence. A man named Santoshi Nakamoto first came up with the idea of creating an online currency back in 2009. During that time, the only currencies being used were the ones that were regulated by the government. This meant that there was a certain amount of government intervention with every transaction that was being undertaken. The inventor decided to create a software that would generate these coins through specific processes, that could then be used for transactions across the web.

At the time, the concept seemed so foreign that it only caught on in circles that were familiar with software development and networking. However, in the past two years, the thought of owning Bitcoin has spread even to those whose internet use is limited to Facebook and Youtube.

Acquiring Bitcoin

There are two main methods through which people are able to acquire Bitcoin. One of these is through Bitcoin mining, and the other is from Bitcoin trading. Bitcoin mining entails using a computer software to solve a series of algorithms and codes to be able to unveil Bitcoin. The second method of acquiring Bitcoin and the easier option for the common person is through trading.

Online Trading

There are a number of trading platforms that allow individuals to put in real-world currency and then convert that to Bitcoin. This is a form of trading that functions similar to that of the real world stock market and tends to see similar trends across different cryptocurrency options.

The main reason why Bitcoin can be traded with on a stock market-like platform is because of the way they are supposed to mimic real world or physical currency. Just like currency like dollars, yen, rupees, etc., Bitcoin has a certain transactional value that is held against it. Because they need to be bought, they need to have a certain conversion value that people can turn to when trying to convert one currency to another. If you log onto any trading platform, you will see the value of Bitcoin, which is generally shown in the form of dollars. This enables individuals to convert their government-issued currency to digital currency.

Bitcoin Mining

The method of mining Bitcoin is a bit more complex than stock market interactions. The main terminology that one needs to be familiar in this regard is blockchains. Contrary to popular belief, a blockchain isn’t a cryptocurrency by itself. It functions as a database that contains the information needed to be able to acquire Bitcoin. This is considered to central technology surrounding the concept of Bitcoin and is something that you should be familiar with.

The blockchain is one of the main reasons why Bitcoin has become viable in the first place. The importance of this is because of the very principles that Bitcoin was based on. Bitcoin isn’t regulated by anyone, or any government like real-world currencies are. There is no gatekeeper protecting the number of Bitcoin that are present in the world, which can make processing this increasingly tricky. A blockchain, in this instance, works as a decentralized database and tracks all of the information concerning Bitcoin transactions. The record that is created of this tends to be permanent, and cannot be altered by an external party in any manner.

The blockchain is also one of the reasons why Bitcoin isnot a hackable currency. Even though there are stills security risks that individuals face when using trading platforms and cryptocurrency wallets, the main centralized system cannot be compromised. It is an incredibly well-known fact that some of the biggest companies, organizations, and banks have been compromised by hackers in the past, and this is something that has had a significant impact on the workings of these institutions.

However, hacking a blockchain is an incredibly difficult task because of all that it entails. If a hacker wants to get information from a blockchain, they have to identify hundreds of computers and compromise them at the same kind, only to find one string of transaction data, which in most instances would provide them with information regarding an amount that is less than one Bitcoin. While there is no such thing as a completely secure system that is free from any kind of external hacking or intervention, blockchains do provide a layer of security that is not commonly found among banks and traditional institutions.

Uses For Bitcoin

Ever since Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies first started to make their way to the public, one of the biggest questions commonly asked was regarding what cryptocurrencies could be used for. While the concept of a cryptocurrency might be cool and intriguing to some, it wouldn’t be of much worth if it couldn’t be used for anything. Because cryptocurrencies are a digital currency, the manner in which one can use them tends to be limited in nature, at least till more avenues and applications for its use pop up.

As it stands, the retail and e-commerce industry is one of the biggest prospects where Bitcoin can actually be used. When the currency was first created, Nakamoto wanted to create a currency that could be used for a varied range of monetary transactions on a peer to peer level. The vision was to create a currency that could be applied to a host of different transactions, particularly when it came to the buying and selling of goods and services online. Since then, more and more retailers have been turning to cryptocurrencies and including these in the forms of payment that people can use.

If Bitcoin does want to evolve as a more well-used currency, their application needs to be prominent on a much wider scale than what it currently is. The retail industry is probably the best avenue for the growth of cryptocurrency, which is why analysts believe that this is the one sector that cryptocurrencies should be applied in is within the e-commerce industry. For cryptocurrencies to reach their true potential, they need to be used on a much wider scale, and the best way to do that is through e-commerce. The reasons why the retail industry is the perfect avenue for the growth of cryptocurrencies is because of the following:

1. Wider Acceptance

The reason why Bitcoin can flourish in the e-commerce industry is because of the inclusiveness that websites want to incorporate. When a brand starts up its e-commerce website, they want to be able to offer their customers with every possible payment option. This attracts a wider audience, thereby helping the brand as a whole.

Because of this, many e-commerce sites have already added Bitcoin as one of their options, thereby allowing customers to pay for goods in this form. This, in turn, leads to greater demand for Bitcoin, leading to it becoming one of the more prominent manners in which people can pay for goods and services.

2. E-Commerce Industries Rely On Innovation

Being innovative is essential for any company that wants to stand out on an online space. Because of the reduction of geographical borders, companies have to compete with others from around the world. The need to evolve and stay on top is a must, and therefore implementing Bitcoin in payment systems is one way to ensure that they are never left behind.

3. Fewer Transaction Fees Are Incurred

At the end of the day, an online site wants to make as much money as they can through their sales. Customers, on the other hand, want to pay as less as possible for the goods that they buy. When using traditional currency, there is a certain amount that has to be incurred as taxes on the amount that is paid and received. Because there are reduced transaction fees when using Bitcoin, it is something that can prove to be beneficial for the brand as well as the customers. This single factor has led to a much wider implementation of Bitcoin as a whole.

4. The Need For Easier Fund Transfers Is Prominent

The e-commerce industry has always wanted to make transactions and transfers as easy as possible. More often than not, fund transfers can take a long period to end up in a person’s account, especially if there is a certain amount of currency conversion involved in this process. Using Bitcoin is incredibly fast and lets the brand or seller get the money faster than they otherwise would. This has encouraged the use of Bitcoin on a much larger scale, thereby contributing to the growth of the cryptocurrency industry.

5. Growing International Markets

As we move towards more digitalized institutions, people and brands from all over the world can easily connect with each other without even moving from the comfort of their homes. For example, in the 1980s, if a person living in the United States wanted to get something from London, they would need to ask someone who was traveling there, or call up the store and wait several weeks or months for their package to arrive. With the internet and e-commerce industry, a person living in the United States can easily shop in a London based store and have the goods delivered to them in no time.

This, however, gives rise to a more pressing issue of currency conversion. The values of currencies differ based on the country that one lives in, which means that the amounts that they would have to pay are also dependent on those factors. Bitcoin eliminate the need to consider international currencies and provide one uniform rate, no matter which part of the world you live in. This has caused more people to turn towards these digital currencies, thereby pushing for the growth of the cryptocurrency market.

KR1 February Update 🍉

Committee members in the Melon Council will have the opportunity to vote when it comes to matters such as being able to invite new members into the council, being able to adequately update the Melon protocol smart contracts, appropriately adjusting the ‘amgu’(Asset Management Gas Units) price, updating protocol parameters and many more, thus a super important role in the Ecosystem. Apart from Janos, the Melon Council features Will Harborne from Ethfinex, Melon code auditor Nick Munoz-McDonald, Matthew Di Ferrante from ZK Labs, Zahreddine Touag from Woorton, Martin Lundfall from Maker & Dapphub, Fabian Gompf from Parity and Jenna Zenk for the new Melon team entity (something is in the works there!).

A Melon Council jamming session

The Melon committee was announced at the annual Melon Asset Management conference, M-1 which was held in Zug, Switzerland in partnership with the Multichain Asset Managers Association (MAMA). There were lots of presentations and panels discussing the future of digital asset management, asset trading and asset custody. If you are KR1 follower, you will know we were the first investors to support Melon and their vision with one of our first investments ever made as an entity.

The M-1 event showcased an all-star cast in an intimate setting with world-class discussions around asset management and it’s future. KR1’s Janos took part in a panel of “Who is pioneering investments in crypto and what will it take for them to transition their own operations and trading to asset management 3.0”. Joining the panel were Chance Du from Coefficient Ventures, Russell Newton from GABI and Jonathan Allen from Dekrypt Capital.

Chance, Rusell, Jon, and Janos

Another KR1 portfolio company had a panel slot as well, Seb from Vo1t was talking about the roles of digital asset custodians with Zare from Woorton.

Zahreddine from Woorton, Seb from Vo1t and Mona

Ethereum co-founder and Polkadot founder Gavin Wood gave an update on Polkadot’s Substrate and revealed the cryptoeconomic model for Polkadot. It was great to have more information on the levers behind the protocol, which if on schedule will have its Genesis block Q4 this year.

Gav of York, founder of Ethereum, Parity and now Polkadot

Mind-numbing? A bit. Worth it? Probably, yes. – Jill MH Taber – Medium

Photo by Daria Nepriakhina on Unsplash

Yesterday, I wrote 3,000 words about children’s toys.

The work was a bit mind-numbing. I tend to describe my word usage as economical: if it can be said in fewer words, with more meaning, I’m all for it.

I wrote nearly 1,000 words on suggestions and considerations when shopping for toys. Those 1,000 words numbered 700 too many on that subject, but I had a word count to hit and hit it, I did.

I landed the assignment through a freelance website. When I submitted the article, the client told me I nailed it. The project put me right back in college, eking out nine-page papers on Charles Dickens’ books I’d never read.

I stared at the word count on the lower portion of my screen, watching the number go from 200, to 500, to 1,200, to 2,000. The last 1,000 words were a struggle. I was sweating. I watched two guys at the coffee shop, overhearing their discussions about where they’d go for lunch. I felt jealous of their relaxed nonchalance. There you are, sitting there, talking about microbrews and burgers, not a care in the world, and I’m at 1,947 words of 3,000, describing the merits of zip-lines for seven-year-olds.

I left the coffee shop, 15 minutes past schedule, feeling utter relief for finishing hours ahead of my 8 PM deadline.

I left a message for a friend that I wouldn’t take another assignment. Torture, I claimed. Totally ridiculous.

In emails with the client, I provided honest feedback and asked a few questions. It’s a skill, he wrote. It’s a different kind of writing. You learn how and where to find information that you can rewrite faster.

His comments struck a cord. It’s a skill. I thought of my cover letter submitted with my proposal for the job: I wrote of growing up on my family’s cattle ranch, learning how to work, doing a good job no matter what the job.

Even though I said I wouldn’t write more, I sent him an email this afternoon and said, “Sign me up for a project tomorrow.” School’s out for the day. I’m going to need two hours to research and write. I’m probably crazy.

But I can’t let myself quit yet. Even though this type of work is not how I want to spend all of my time, I think there is great value in developing and honing a challenging skill. When I’m working, I tend to get a bit cranky with my kids: I’m begging them to just let me get this done when they’re begging me for a snack. I think, perhaps, these assignments will provide an opportunity for me to hone another skill: patience under pressure.

I’ll get my full assignment tomorrow morning. The client offered to pay double the usual fee. All I know is I’ll be writing a guide for a city in Japan. I know next to nothing about Japan, but by this time tomorrow, I’ll know a bit more.

Mi Vida de Hormiga

Querida Familia,

It was a very sad feeling to leave my family, my home, my friends and my lover on Christmas night and watch the ground become flatter and smaller and the lights amass into general, segregated squares of occupancy. There was the airport. Venice Marina Del Rey. There was downtown. There was the Santa Monica Pier. Malibu. San Fernando Valley. San Gabriel Mountains. And there was the Inland Empire, where, by the time I was in the air, you were all arriving close within that area.

La tierra se apareció muy pequeño. Y si estaba cierto finalmente que nuestro mundo si esta pequeño. En el cielo, en el vuelo, la verdad es revelada: nosotros y nuestras vidas somos objetivamente minúsculos. Y como puede ser que mi tristeza se siente tan grande, tan real, tan enorme, tan fuerte cuando todo mi mundo esta tan pequeño? Como puedo llorar por mi vida de hormiga?

Es porque también las hormigas sienten grande en su experiencia. En la perspectiva de la hormiga, la vida es grande, realmente. Porque quien puede decir que algo es grande o pequeño objetivamente? Lo que es grande y lo que es chico depende de la perspectiva.

From the air, it became clear that the human world is tiny. But as I looked down at my ant world, it was true that there was nothing more that I wanted in that moment, on that plane, with a God’s-eye-view, than to be an ant again. The divine is not in the clouds. The divine is on the ground, on the Earth, in my eyes, in my body, in my world and in my perspective. El Divino es mi familia y mi casa. El Divino eres tu y yo.

I watched the plane fly over California for a long time and I saw Los Angeles disappear. And I thought about how everything I loved was so small down there. So tiny. I looked at where la familia Moctezuma probably was. And I thought how graceful it is to make things so small become so beautiful. And I didn’t like being disconnected and seeing the objectivity of our smallness. I wanted to be back down and experience everything as big again. And I thought about the laugh and the kisses and the hugs and the food. So I thought about how small those events were from up where I was.

But more importantly, I also remembered how enormous it feels when I am down there.

Mi familia y su amor es enorme.