Archive for the ‘ecash’ Category

Millicent Paper

There’s an interesting paper on millicents (digital cash worth about a thousandth of a cent) from a guy who seems to be involved in Microsoft’s Penny Black project. A decade hence, assuming that computers (and their components) continue on the price and performance curves of the last two decades, the minimum transaction grain will be […]

Microsoft Containing Spam

Oh, the double entendres. Anyway, this Infoworld article quotes Ryan Hamlin, the general manager of Microsoft’s antispam technology and strategy: “It won’t surprise me at all if we spend close to $18 billion a year next year to deal with spam,” he said. This cost includes the price of filtering software and storage hardware and […]

Measures for Bank Efficiency

Each currency has to have a single dedicated bank to handle transactions. It requires a database containing an entry for every transaction that’s taken place. Each transaction needs to do a single element lookup from that database, and there shouldn’t be any locality of reference. Your storage requirements are O(T), and your transaction overhead is […]


An obvious problem is how to transition from charging nothing for all your mail to charging something, without having everyone else do the same thing at the same time, or not getting any email ever again. There are a few ways we can ease this in. The first and biggest problem is mailing lists. Coping […]

The Spam Market

The biggest difficulty in running an experiment like that is to make sure that it’s possible to get involved in the market. That’s a wildly difficult undertaking: it essentially requires everyone who might ever want to send you email to obtain the tools and understanding to operate in the market. That can be made fairly […]

The Spam Theory

Thomas Sowell makes a very convincing argument for markets in his book Basic Economics. In principle, the idea is that markets allow people to redistribute scarce goods (food, labour, materials, land, etc) according to where it’s most useful to society. The more creative you are, the more and better work you do, the more other […]