Tag Archives: infrastructure

Tales of the Trash – A neighborhood garbageman explains modern Egypt. (New Yorker Magazine)


“In Cairo, my family lives on the ground floor of an old building, in a sprawling, high-ceilinged apartment with three doors to the outside. One door opens onto the building’s lobby, another leads to a small garden, and the third is solely for the use of the zabal, or garbageman, who is named Sayyid Ahmed. It’s in the kitchen, and when we first moved to the apartment, at the beginning of 2012, the landlady told me to deposit my trash on the fire escape outside the door at any time. There was no pickup schedule, and no preferred container; I could use bags or boxes, or I could simply toss loose garbage outside. Sayyid’s services had no set fee. He wasn’t a government employee, and he had no contract or formal job. I was instructed to pay him whatever I believed to be fair, and if I pleased I could pay him nothing at all.”

“Life Inside a Secret Chinese Bitcoin Mine” via Vice

I wanted to post this video to the blog as we mentioned bitcoin in our previous class and because it delves into the infrastructure of the exchange protocol (labor, computing, electricity & heat, etc.).

For anyone interested in learning more about bitcoin from a technical standpoint, I highly recommend with the following topics: public key cryptography, proof of work, and the public ledger, also known as the blockchain.

(If you ask me about it, I will probably bore you for hours.)