This has happened to me before. A week where I either don’t have the inspiration or the time to write a proper publication. Well, today is one of those weeks. I have a lot of interesting topics to write about in my backlog, but every time I pick one of them I don’t seem to find the inspiration to write a proper piece. This week has been quite “brain-intensive” for me, so I have arrived at Thursday dry of inspiration and brain power.
But I couldn’t leave you without your Thursday email. Remember a while ago when I started the “Lazy Publications” for those weekends where I didn't feel like writing something? (I ended up using this resource just once because, to be honest, I always feel like writing). Well, this publication is a continuation to that “Lazy publication”.
But now that I have moved the newsletter to a workday, the reason for not writing a proper piece is not that much my laziness but my lack of time or inspiration. This is why instead of calling them “Lazy Publications” anymore I’ve decided to start the TWIL (This Week I Learned) series for when this happens.
What can you expect from TWIL publications? I think it is self-explanatory, but just in case. If I publish a TWIL publication it means I didn’t have the time to generate a proper piece of writing, but this doesn’t mean that I can’t collect every new thing that I’ve learnt throughout the week, compile it in an email, and share it with my audience so that they can also learn something new.
There are a lot of successful weekly newsletters which are plainly a compilation of links and resources, so alternating proper publications with a collection of interesting resources in this newsletter may not be such a bad idea from time to time. In the meantime, any proposal you may have after reading this first TWIL, it is more than welcome.
TWIL #1: My week in a few headlines
Some technologies I’ve been working with:
In this section of TWIL publications I will share some of the technologies I’ve been hacking with throughout the week. This week it’s been the turn for:
Graphsync: “GraphSync is a protocol for synchronizing IPLD graphs among peers. It allows a host to make a single request to a remote peer for all of the results of traversing an IPLD selector on the remote peer's local IPLD graph.”. Remember Bitswap, the protocol used in IPFS to retrieve content from the network? Well, Graphsync is another alternative to retrieve content from nodes, but instead of requesting specific CIDs, you request a graph through IPLD selectors. More about Graphsync in future publications (indeed, it is part of my backlog).
IPLD: IPLwhat? “The goal of IPLD is to enable decentralized data-structures that are universally addressable and linkable which in turn will enable more decentralized applications. These data-structures allow us to do for data what URLs and links did for HTML web pages.” You can think of IPLD as a way of referencing any kind of data in decentralized applications. Once again, expect a future publication on IPLD.
IPLD selectors: “IPLD selectors are sort of like regexps, but for trees and graphs of IPLD data” (i.e. DAG structures).
This week I’ve came across a few interesting resources in the Wasm space:
Introducing WAGI: The Easiest Way to Build WebAssembly Microservices: In this publication I introduced Krustlet, and I discussed how I thought Wasm could become the equivalent to the new Docker. Well, this resource is an update from the team behind Krustlet presenting (WAGI), a tool to build WebAssembly microservices. Cool, right?
Bytecode Alliance: One year update: A look into the first year of the Bytecode Alliance and their plans ahead.
Motoko, a programming language for building directly on the Internet: A programming language for Dfinity’s Internet Computer which targets Wasm. What I liked the most about Motoko is that it revives several interesting —and pretty old— computer science concepts such as Actors, and their approach to persistence in decentralized systems.
A bit more of my writing:
I mainly write articles in this newsletter, but not only. Sometimes, as a result of my job, I write in other blogs and platforms. I just realized while I was writing this, that I usually don’t share external articles in this newsletter, and they may actually be of interest to you. TWIL publication can be a great place to share these pieces, and that is why I’ve included this “a bit more of my writing” section.
Honey, I shrunk our libp2p streams: Where I share the results of adding compression in libp2p (something I already advanced in this newsletter a few weeks ago).
"Two ears, one mouth": how to leverage bitswap chatter for faster transfers: An overview of the results achieved by one of my improvement proposals to the Bitswap proocol. A prototype I already glimpsed when discussing HAMTs in this newsletter.
Other interesting resources:
Anatomy of a binary executable: If you are as fascinated as I am with the field of compilers and binaries, you definitely need to read this article.
GitHub Source Code Leak: I know, #1 in HackerNews today, but I also had to share it. Do you think this will make Github more vulnerable to attacks?
NAT Slipstreaming: Another Top post from HN that shows how an attacker can remotely access any TCP/UDP service bypassing NAT/firewalls. We’ve also discussed NATs recently in this newsletter. This is a great complement to that publication.
Some papers I’ve read:
And a conference I’ve attended:
You are still on time to attend to the open sessions of the HotNets 2020: Nineteenth ACM Workshop on Hot Topics in Networks going on this week.
That’s all for today, folks! I am already planning next week’s publication so that I don’t have to resort again to the TWIL wildcard. As always (but especially when this newsletter undergoes changes) feedback is more than welcome! See you next week!