Information Fragmentation

I’ve been studying bitcoin lately much more than usual.  But in between I take my breaks using different places, too many different places. Let’s go through that list:  We have conferences, physical meetup groups, and telegram chats for local-realtime communication (for that matter Slack chat groups are recently sprouting on the scene as well). Then we have the what I dub 1st class bitcoin communities Github, IRC, and Bitcointalk.

Just my (not all) IRC channels

Those places alone have all the information I could ever need to learn what I would need to know about bitcoin.  Yet, we’ve got 1st class high quality sources as well such as bitcoin.stackexchange, the mailing list (mirrored on /r/bitcoin_devlist), and the official ‘bitcoin wiki’.  But beyond those you have the splash sites (I say splash to mean like a ‘splash page’ or front-facing introductory site to give new users information) source pages such as, and the countless news sites like cd,ct,ccn,dd,cg, and many MANY others ( Link; Your main endeavor is to mill for customer views and ad revenue, which isn’t terrible so long as you provide solid, meaningful content), then we get into the class of alt-forums such as, letstalkbitcoin, forum.bitcoin, and the mirror (that I can’t quite trust because, it’s a scraping mirror clone of bitcointalk)  Now we venture into the mainstream social media channels – youtube, reddit, twitter, facebook, and likely more that I haven’t yet discovered.  My point in that is we have too many different sources of interest.  There are literally dozens of places each with their own set of places (Do you really think bitcointalk is just one huge 180,000 deep crowd of persons all talking about different things bitcoin???)

What made me draw the conclusion to write this here?  Well, I noticed today when a Multi-Bit developer asked me about flair selection that we have this wiki page on /r/bitcoin.  The thing is, that page is blank but we happen to have had it linked to an entire halfway complete subreddit, acting as a portal of all the relevant information you could find from any single one of the 1st class sources (Github, IRC, Bitcointalk)…so now throw in everything else and you see what I’m getting at?  There is an absolute flood of information and content available about bitcoin across the internet, all with its own levels of quality and difficulties.  Seriously...I haven’t even gotten into the sites that serve as bitcoin analysis tools, the cool gadgets that do something on behalf of the bitcoin network such as play sounds or a video of cats, or even live stream video to you, nor the actual legit business models that have flourished using bitcoin to circumvent frictional mediums (like amazon gift credits).

Credit: @Eddienep

It goes without saying that there is a substantial community both producing and consuming content related to all things bitcoin (and to a greater extension, cryptocurrency).  Amazing despite having a relatively small community (my estimates are that there are 120K bitcoin users worldwide based on 1150 or so avg participants in the main IRC #bitcoin channel).  For 120 thousand people, I would venture that we have gigabytes (if not terabytes when including video/tweets/commentary) of data available to analyze and consume.

Despite this broad swath of blogs, charts, software code, reference guides, and implementation manuals, there is a sore lack of training and data presentation on network analysis related to our favorite digital currency.  This is important because the lack of resources in the presence of a proliferation of others (just look at the sheer number of Andreas Antonopoulos [nearly 30K] speaking videos on Youtube if you don’t believe me) show that we’re still lacking in terms of proper education (and in turn understanding) for intermediate to advanced users.

For example, shadow-bitcoin is a thin-client bitcoin simulator yet there is zero information beyond the project pages and a few research paper pdfs that I found.  How on earth can there be thousands of casual bitcoin users who have an opinion on how development should unfold if there is a glaring lack of tools, articles and documentation related to such questions?  I didn’t expect to rant about all of this right now, In fact, I was considering putting together a quick how-to guide for building bitcoin-core yourself from source code and running tests on block speed (how long it takes to sync a full node so that the wallet is usable – or so that you can begin mining solo perhaps.)

What do you think is missing from our Bitcoin Ecosphere in terms of education or perhaps in terms of application?  Let’s Disqus!


Post Author: Frankenmint

From the pristine land of the internetz, the Frankenment was bred from machine. While looking to embrace the new world Linux regime he is truly a windows bred. I've come from the darkness to the light to share with you other internetz fol-ken to share the message of virtual money. Through our actions, we can make the virtual world yet again beyond the decree of the internet, with the decree of internetz money! Bitcoin, the Supercurrency, the official tender of the internetz that will be accepted by all countries and all fol-ken Alike!