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What is an NFT anyway?

This is a description I wrote to a fb comment:

It's a digital collectible. You can buy a URL that will show you a picture, and it shows up on the blockchain proving that you paid money for the URL. You can also resell the URL.

It's kind of like buying some genuine Louis Vuitton, and showing it off, except, there's no "thing". Also, the people you are showing off to are, basically, other people who bought LV. And each LV item is slightly different. But they are all genuine, no fakes.

Also, it's artwork, but typically, it's a computer doing some automated copy-pasta to produce a picture, based on a library of artist-created parts. Kind of like Colorforms or Mr. Potatohead.

The technical details are:
* blockchain - a shared ledger of transactions
* coin - unit of currency used to conduct transactions
* token - aka coin, a piece of data that represents value
* non-fungible token (NFT) - a token that's unique, similar to a URL, but also represents some value, like real estate

Coins, tokens, NFT, are created through software that runs on the blockchain. The blockchain is a database that can also run code. The database is supported by a network of computers that replicate the entire database, using technologies that allow many unrelated parties to participate in the project.

This stuff is popular with capitalists, for many reasons, but mainly because they think it'll create a system that allows money to be exchanged without central banks or governments.
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Corona RS 7041 Razor Tooth Folding Saw, 7-Inch Blade

When I unfolded this saw, it reminded me of a pocket knife.

The blade is stored in the handle, and when it’s time to saw, you unfold it, and lock the blade into the fully extended position.

Then you get to sawing. It saws well. It’ll cut through tree branches as thick as your wrist.

Unless you have huge trees, this saw is more than big enough for most tasks. It’s perfect for small fruit trees.

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New Balance Men’s Vazee Urge v1 Running Shoe, Yellow/Black, 9.5 2E US

I bought these in a hurry, and within a couple months, they became my favorite shoes. It’s been a couple years, and I’m still wearing them. (I made them last by rotating.)

These soles are worn down, and it seems to make the shoe even more comfortable.

This wasn’t a very expensive shoe when I first bought it, but, now, look around: the price has roughly doubled. Some people must be liking this shoe, a lot.

Update Oct 2021: I am still wearing the shoes, but the firm rubber sole has worn away, and the softer rubber is now the “sole”. Soon, a hole will form and the shoes will be history.

Update March 2022: Still wearing them, but not all the time. I can feel the ground through the soles.

You can buy new and used Vazee Urges at Ebay.

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Charity Auction: Rose Baboian’s Armenian-American Cook Book

I have a copy of this fundraiser cookbook first published in 1964 for auction on Ebay. Click here to see the listing.

50% of the sale will go to Equality Armenia. (This percentage may rise as the bidding rises.)

The auction will end on Sunday, June 27, 2021, at 5pm PST.

Auction link: https://www.ebay.com/itm/265199589676

About Armenian community cookbooks: From Ajem Pilaf to Yalanchi Dolma: Armenian Cookbooks Added to Janice Bluestein Longone Culinary Archive.

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exit10-exodus.com is a scam

I don’t believe I fell for this, but I did.

I saw a Facebook ad promising to give me some money (10 EXIT) for trying out a mobile web version of Exodus. I really wanted to see a mobile app that didn’t require installation.

I’m greedy for freebies, so I clicked. It asked for my 12 word recovery phrase.

I typed it in. That was STUPID, but I did it.

I really wasn’t thinking.

Within a day, $26 worth of BCH was taken from the wallet.

Fortunately, the other coin wasn’t worth enough to steal.

This could have been a lot worse.

There’s no recovery from a heist like this. I will need to create a new wallet, and move the remaining funds (a whopping $6 of BSV) over to it. Click the link to get the instructions from the Exodus website.

Here’s a brief description of my process, on MINT Linux:

  1. create a new user account. I’m using Linux, so I do that in the “Settings”.
  2. Lock the screen, and switch to the other user.
  3. Start Exodus there, and it’ll create a fresh wallet.
  4. At this point, you will need a way to copy receiver addresses from one account to the other. You cannot use copy-paste.
    1. What I did was use the “Notes” feature in LastPass. You can use any note app that saves data to the network.
    2. Create a receiver address for each coin you are going to transfer.
    3. Put that info into the Notes.
  5. Next, make a backup of the wallet. This will require creating a new password, and will show a new 12-word seed.
  6. Print out the seed, or, do what I did, which was to type it into the LastPass note. I know, this is not totally secure, but it’s what I did. A printout is better.
  7. Switch users again, by locking the screen, and then switching users.
  8. To synchronize the LastPass notes, I logged out of LastPass and logged back in.
  9. Go into the compromized Exodus wallet and send your coin to the new receiver addresses.
  10. Next up, quit Exodus, and delete the old wallet files. In my case, they were in ~/.config/Exodus.
  11. Start up Exodus, and go through the backup restoration process.

I really should use a printed backup, but my filing and living situation is a bit to chaotic. The printout needs to be stored in multiple, well labeled locations, with instructions.

While $26 is not a lot of money, it could have been used to buy some food.

I’m reporting exit10-exodus.com to Fcebook.

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Buying Stuff for FREE On Here with Cryptocurrency

It’s simple:

If you have some cryptocurrency, and wish to buy something here, that can be arranged.

The easiest way is to use Coinbase. There are many good exchanges out there, but Coinbase seems to be the easiest for newbies. The best thing is, you can get “free money” from Coinbase to pay for the stuff.

Free Money

Coinbase has a “rewards” program where you get paid (in cryptocurrencies) to watch short videos and take easy quizzes.

The rewards are small – $3 or so is typical – but, over time, they can appreciate in value as the interest in the currency increases. Here’s what I’ve made in rewards so far (as of May 10, 2021):

It’s a little over $200, for watching instructional videos.

The ones at the top, I watched around a year ago. They’ve appreciated in value, a lot!

The ones at the bottom, I watched recently, and they dropped in value, though, not too much. Also, it’s not like I put any money into the system. This was free money.

Sign up with Coinbase through this link, and I might get a commission if you buy crypto on there.

The Videos

The videos weren’t boring. They were short explainers that described each cryptocurrency. Each is trying to find a niche in this new financial system. Watching the videos helps you learn about the product, and also, cryptocurrency in general.

Whether you think bitcoin is legit, or a big ponzi scam, you can still watch these videos and learn how these companies/capitalists are thinking.

Odds are, nearly all these products will “fail” and be swallowed up by a bigger company. That’s just capitalist consolidation. In the meantime, they are flush with venture capital money, and trying to get mindshare.

This gives the entire system a kind of flaky, bullshitty quality. It’s slick, but seems fake.

It’s not really “fake”: it’s promotional.

The companies are trying to identify and build lists of early adopters who are open to taking financial risks. At this point, we are not “early adopters”, but the people who come after the early adopters, but we are still a valuable customers, because we take risks.

Customer acquisition costs in finance are, according to a random blog I found, $175 per customer.

Think about those numbers above: they paid $3 in fake money to get me to watch a video, and now, I’m blogging about them. Holy moly, talk about “growth hacking”.

Buying Stuff Here

Anything I have in here, in inventory, or on Ebay, you can buy with crypto.

For example, I have a book and DVD combo for sale on Ebay for $8 + shipping. The shipping comes out to around $4. So the total is $12.

Coinbase will do transfers of crypto between users, for free. No fees. (Normally, on an Ebay sale, I pay 13% in various fees to complete a sale.)

So, you transfer $12 worth of crypto to me, and I’ll delete the listing on Ebay, and mail the product out to you.

The trade will need to be arranged online, through chat. You can reach me through the contact form. Contact me there, I’ll set up a chat and we can walk through the process.

The info I’ll need are: your mailing address, what you want to buy, and your Coinbase contact.

If you want to see what else I have for sale, using “funny money”, so you can get big discounts, check out my Listia and Simbi accounts. Both will give you free “coin”, so you can get stuff for the cost of shipping.

How to Time the Market

Watch videos when the market is down. Then, later, when the market is up, you can turn around and convert the coin into one of the stablecoins, or spend them by transferring them to me, to get goods in return.

My general policy will be to convert the coin into a stablecoin, or convert to a staking coin that’s down.

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Door Handle Inside Interior Blue Driver Side LH Left for 93-97 Corolla Prizm

I just got this, and installed it. I’m hoping it works out better than the previous handle(s).

A few years back, I purchased a four-pack of door handles, and installed them. Some worked, but some promptly broke within months.

The singles ones might last longer. They cost more, and they have an “UH” logo on them.

The cheaper ones in a four pack don’t have the logo, and have a red plastic sleeve.

I suspect the four-pack is for dealers selling used cars, to fix up a car for sale, so all the handles are the same color and new.

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Skullcandy Simple Headphones Blue, Skullcandy Ink’d Headset from Ross, Cheap

These were $4 for a pair, and I thought I was getting a headset, but it’s just headphones. Headphones with no mic! Arrgh. I had to go and buy a headset. Fortunately, it was cheap, and these are good. They come with two sizes of silicone plugs, so you can get a comfortable fit. The audio quality is solid, with a nice bass.

Generally, I’ve had good luck with Skullcandy brand headphones. The audio is good. The build quality is pretty good – not as good as Apple and other higher-end products, but solid. The price is fairly high, if you don’t get this kind of closeout.

This was a $5 pair, and is the best headset I’ve had in this price range. Key features:

  • good mic, and not too sensitive (too sensitive turns out to be a problem because it pick up noise)
  • decent wire that doesn’t break
  • low price as usual