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Friday, 3 November 2017

My friend's questions on Blockchain, and my answers (LinkedIn)

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I have a friend who's doing IT. Recently he's become interested in Blockchain, and so, he asked his question on LinkedIn about Blockchain. And then he tagged me and asked for my take on it. Since I wrote at length to answer his queries, I would like to post my answers here as well, as a record of my "Proof of Work".

My friend's question

This is what he wrote: 

I am curious about block chain technology. Bitcoin, ethereum etc. How is the public able to continuing "support" the requirements? I mean a node need to have very huge storage space to store the copy of the smart contract which is growing every few seconds or minutes. What happen if all of the old copies of transactions deleted from all the nodes?

When at certain time a transaction need to be audited, how is it going to be done? Is it audited all the time or after a few years later, "someone" (or group of nodes) will try to audit the same piece of transaction again? That time, how many nodes will be involve in the audit jobs? I only learn about mining software develop by programmers, never read about the software for the audit process. Is the audit process part of the mining process?

How can people use something like ethereum which is still a piece of software under development which may contain bugs and security issues. If ethereum is not a currency like bitcoin, why we still keep it inside a wallet?

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Wednesday, 25 October 2017

Patent Invalidation

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Disclaimer: This blog post does not constitute legal advice. You should consult with your lawyer before you make any decisions inspired by the text of this blog post.

In Malaysia, as in many other jurisdictions of the world, there is a procedure known as patent invalidation. What it is, is a procedure to remove the protection of law given to a patent holder, and to declare that the patent in fact is invalid. Hence, the word "invalidation".

The effect of invalidation is that the patent is no longer valid, and the whole world may then proceed to exploit the invention as disclosed in the (now invalidated) patent.

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Saturday, 30 September 2017

The challenges in getting a trademark

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Getting a trademark can be challenging.

If you are starting a business, it's probably common to receive advice that you should register your trademark. Registering a trademark comes with benefits, such as proof of when you first registered it, and making it clear how you use the trademarks. Having a registered trademark is also an asset for your business as the trademark is seen as part of your company's intangible assets.

Some of the world's most valuable trademarks are shown above.

Trademarks also make it easier to challenge imitators and counterfeit producers. When a counterfeit item is detected in the market, the trademark owner can get a lawyer to demand that the counterfeiter stop selling and stop producing the counterfeit items. Subsequently, the counterfeiter can be sued in a court of law for damages, delivery up of sales, general damages, loss of profits, and the like. So, getting a trademark has its benefits for businesses, and businesses should not baulk at the upfront cost of applying for a trademark.

But there are challenges when applying for a trademark. Here are some of them.

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Friday, 29 September 2017

When Bitcoin is accepted by street vendors

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Street Vendors Get In On Bitcoin

The above photo became viral on the Malaysian social media networks recently. It shows a lady called "Jijah" who was selling food at her stall. If you look at the basket, it's probably some kind of nasi lemak, the usual fare for breakfast. The lady in the photo isn't that young, probably in her 40's at best. 

What this means is that even street vendors know that Bitcoin is rising in value. And they are trying to get in on it. Does it make sense for them? Absolutely. They are getting paid in Bitcoin and they don't have to deposit it into the local bank. The government won't be able to tell how much money they have made. Best of all it will appreciate in value.

But is it a bubble?

I remember when I was younger, a wise man gave me some sagely advice. He said, "When you get information from bankers and lawyers that nobody else knows about, it is highly sought after wisdom! Treasure it! But when you get information from taxi drivers and barbers that everybody else knows about, it is probably a bubble! Beware!"

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