Simon-The-Easily-Forgotten-and-Seldom-Talked-About-Christmas-Leprechaun

There weren’t many famous leprechauns, but Simon was one of them. He was, on Christmas Eve, hanging out with his friend Lucky (another famous leprechaun). Every Christmas Eve, Lucky and Simon would eat, drink, and get into the festive spirit. Rescuing Christmas was Simon’s job, and he pulled it off flawlessly every year. Everyone forgets how pivotal Simon is to the Christmas process – maybe it is because he is seldom talked about. Alison, his mum, even forgets to get him a gift on his birthday. So Simon hangs out with the only friend he has who sometimes remembers him, Lucky. Only this time, their hang was different. Never before had lucky been so handsy- he was touching Simon a lot more than was usual.

“Why are you being so touchy?”

“All I’m doing is trying to show my friend some affection.”

Simon felt uncomfortable, so he decided to drive home as he needed to prepare for Santa’s arrival. To his surprise, his car would not work- did somebody mess with his engine?

Only a series of well thought out contemporary dance moves would save him from his current handsy predicament. He pranced and danced and jumped and jived. Immediately, Harriet the contemporary dance fairy appeared in front of him.

“Do you have a wish for me, young leprechaun?”

“Engineering knowledge of the motoring kind would be appreciated, my car doesn’t seem to work.”

Harriet did a small, contemporary dance number that Simon was sure would have been impressive if he understood its underlying message a little more.

“IGGIDY BIGGIDY BOOP!”

Simons car still did not start. Realisation hit that Harriet’s contemporary magical dancing powers were not working, and there was now a very solid chance Simon would not be at his house in time for Santa’s arrival. Everybody knows (but it is easily forgotten and seldom talked about) that Simon is needed on Santa’s Sleigh or the Christmas presents will not be delivered. Awkwardly Harriet exited the scene, and all seemed lost.

Luckily, Simon was at Lucky’s house and his residence was known to be the luckiest place on earth. It so happened that another magical deity appeared before Simon- Loki, the trickster god of the Norse.

“Do you need a hand?”

Enthusiastically, Simon nodded.

Now Loki well knew what the problem with Simon’s car was, but he’s a tricky little guy, the trickiest in fact.

“The problem is your engine’s fried.”

It was a surprisingly unlucky thing that was happening at Lucky’s house, Simon thought to himself.

“Tell me, what should I do?”

“You can use my car, it’s fast and it will get you to your house in time for Santa to pick you up.”

Fantastic news this was to Simon. Rolling around in Loki’s Rolls Royce didn’t seem like a bad option.

“Only thing is, if you’re going to use my Rolls Royce, I’m going to use your car to drive around in after I fix it.”

Mysterious was the way that Loki said it, but Simon didn’t have a problem with that. Perfect. Everyone was in agreement. Only a moment ago Simon was making wishes to dance gods, and now he was about to drive in a real Rolls Royce. Possibly the luckiest turn of events that could have eventuated. Lucky Simon. Ecstatically, he jumped into Loki’s car, but as soon as he closed the door behind him he was immediately teleported somewhere else!

“Where am I?”

He looked around and noticed that he was surrounded by thick, unforgiving jungle. Obviously he was far away from his home.

“Will I ever get home for Christmas?”

Everyone knows that Loki is a trickster, and boy, did Simon get tricked good. Relief swept over him as he remembered he still had the Rolls Royce. Even though there was no way that it would be driving anywhere through this jungle thicket, he still felt hopeful having a piece of civilisation close by. Lifting his head, he ventured forth into the jungle. Over vines. Over roots. Keeping a look out for dangerous jungle hazards like panthers and tribal hunters with poison darts. It might have been a lost cause, but it was better than doing nothing. Next to him he saw a little hut- maybe there would be someone he could get directions from. Gas was leaking out the top of the hut, but it was a very pleasant smelling gas. Totiki, the magical tribal woman, appeared from inside the hut.

“Oroboros alorobos!” Unsurprisingly she didn’t speak English.

“Santa needs me, can you help in any way?”

Every chance of saving Christmas was reliant on what Totiki did next. Totiki smoked from her magical smoking pipe, she laughed and did a handstand. Hope was lost and Simon sat down, put his head in his hands and wept.

“Is helping to Santa really what you want to do?” She spoke some English after all, it seemed.

“I need to or Christmas will be ruined, Santa needs me to help him deliver all the presents.”

“Not this Christmas, is that your job.”

Frustratingly, she sometimes talked backwards like Yoda. Orangutans howled from the trees as Simon faced this new truth. Ruining Christmas was not something he wanted any part of. Maybe there wasn’t anything he could do to stop it. And maybe this was meant to be, or predetermined in some way.

“That trickster god really got me good.”

Isolation was the only thing Simon could feel right now, but he was determined not to give up. Out of her mouth he snatched the magical smoking pipe. Next minute he was running through the jungle. All he could hear now were her angry cries coming from the hut. Gripping the pipe firmly between his fingers, he took a puff and wished with all his might that he would be back home and ready for Santa to visit. A swirl of smoke surrounded him, and whisked him up in the air and away.

“I’m flying, I’m flying home!”

Nothing besides smoke could be seen, all he knew was that he was travelling speedily through the air. Slowly, he began to decelerate and descend, his magical journey was coming to an end.

Touching his feet on the ground, the smoke cleared away and he realised he had arrived back at the hut with Totiki. Her beady little eyes watched him as she cackled out loud.

“I’m never getting home for Christmas.”

Maybe he never would.

Company Update: September/October

Full Time Developers

  • With seven full time developers we were able to launch Service Nodes in September, two months early.
  • Managed to run a test version of Lokinet on a private testing network successfully.
  • Research, review, find and fix critical bugs for Loki and exchanges trading Loki.
  • We have noticed increasing difficulty in fixing bugs and merging changes from Monero as Loki moves away from Monero’s original code. There will be an increase in developer resources to merge these changes in the future.

Network Infrastructure & Performance Testing Services

  • In depth network testing on the Loki Testnet resulted in the ability to find and fix critical bugs before Service Nodes were released on Mainnet.
  • Extensive load testing for the Service Node network was performed with the assistance of RPM Solutions.
  • Lokinet decentralised nodes were tested for the first time during this period on a private network, delivering exceptional results. “Able to stream HD media” -Jeff, Lead Developer on Lokinet.

Marketing Services

  • Completion of the first Twitter bounty program, which resulted in increased awareness and community growth.
  • Consistent creation of Loki content, management of social media platforms and channels with 24/7 admins delivering live communications and active community assistance.
  • During this cycle, we have been able to collect relevant marketing data from media created. We have collected data across all current media platforms to be able to maximise growth going forward.
  • We have assisted Loki’s push into the masternode market by communicating with Masternodes.online and Masternodes.pro. We are expecting an influx of Loki adopters with the statistics these services are expected to provide shortly.

Media Services

  • Release of ‘This is Loki’ animation, on track to be out most viewed video on YouTube.
  • Weekly Dev updates, educational videos and guides released in reference to I2P and Service Node setup.
  • A newsletter created for early adopters of Loki was emailed out to a select few, updating them on the inner workings of the network, as well as instructions on how to set up a Service Node, which was well received.

Documentation Services

  • Mkdocs, a wiki style page for all relevant information about Loki, has started coming together and is currently hosted on Github here: https://loki-project.github.io/loki-docs/.
  • The Service Node Portal has been updated with full guides on Service Node setup best practices.
  • Readme files added and updated, these can be found on Github.
  • We have created and released a detailed ROI calculator for Service Nodes in the form of an Excel spreadsheet, for Windows and Mac OS.

PR Services

  • After communicating with over five different PR companies, we selected Wachsman to assist Loki with public image and respectable media connections.
  • We have liaised with Wachsman to deliver timely details for press releases and media placements.
  • Currently there is a positive outcome from Wachsman, and we will most likely continue to use their services going forward.

Conference Attendance and Promotional Services

  • We have represented Loki at the Zero Knowledge Summit in Berlin, Germany.
  • We represented Loki at local event spaces such as the Blockchain Centre, Melbourne University, and YBF Ventures.
  • Interviews with ETH Berlin, Dezentral meetings, attending an FBG networking event and Wirtschaft event.

Research & Development Services

  • Loki Messenger, Lokinet/ LLARP, Service Nodes, multiple Loki wallets and Loki core code have been heavily researched and are in different stages of testing currently. An accurate week by week breakdown of each service currently being worked on has been documented thoroughly and can be found on our social channels and our blog.

Data Analytics & Market Research Services

  • The data analysed from Twitter, YouTube, Reddit, Loki website, Discord, Facebook and Bitcoin Talk have seen increased user interaction and community growth.
  • We are able to use this to increase marketing efficiency for future awareness campaigns.

Administration & Bookkeeping Services

  • As the 2018 Tax year has been completed, we are in the middle of wrapping up all available data in relation to the private sale and tax incentives for the LAG by researching and communicating with accountants, tax specialists and R & D consultants.
  • General bookkeeping of accounts, reconciling transactions, and storing crypto transaction data in an easy to understand way for future use.

Service Node Autostaking Announcement

We are very quickly approaching the date where the first Service Node will be deregistered because of a natural expiry. On October the 20th, 30 days since the first Service Node being registered, the first group of Service Nodes will undergo deregistration.

There is a couple of things we wanted to go through for Service Node operators so they understand what the process is of re-registering, and issue a few warnings about Autostaking. If you are presently intending on using autostaking, you should read this announcement very carefully.

Updating software

The downtime between two registration periods is one of the best times to update your Service Node to the latest version of the Service Node software, as it can be done without the risk of accidentally deregistering your node.
The latest version of the Service Node software can be found here https://github.com/loki-project/loki/releases/latest and we have also complied a written guide and a video guide on how to update your Service Node software.

Solo Operators

If you are a solo operator and used autostake, then you must ensure that whatever computer you issued the stake command from is online during your re-registration period. You must also ensure that there is still a process running called loki-wallet-cli as this wallet will scan the blockchain and recognise when your node has been de-registered, and as soon as your funds become unlocked it will restake your Loki.
If Autostaking fails for any reason then solo operators can run the prepare_registration command on their Service Node again and run the outputted command in their wallet. This will stake your Loki again.

Closed Pools

A closed pool is a pool in which each contributor is specified by their staking address and the amount they are contributing. If you are staking Loki without running a node, ask your operator whether you are in an closed or open pool, they should be able to give appropriate guidance.
If you are Autostaking in a closed pool as a participant we highly recommend that you contact your pool operator and switch away from autostaking back to manual staking. Disabling autostake is as simple as ending the wallet process (called loki-wallet-cli) on your machine, this can be done by using:

On Linux: pkill loki-wallet-cli or
ps aux | grep loki-wallet-cli and using the process id quoted and running kill <process ID>

On Windows: you can use task manager to find the loki-wallet-cli process and terminate it

On Mac: you can use the activity monitor to find and terminate loki-wallet-cli

The main reason we recommend disabling autostake is because in a closed pool if any participant decides they will not stake during the next registration period, you may lock up your Loki without being able to fill the vacancy left by the deserting party.

If you are staking without using autostake, contact your pool operator and ask them whether there has been any changes to their node, they will give you their Service Node pubkey and they can also tell you how much Loki is required during the next registration period (Remember the amount of Loki required to stake is decreasing overtime).

You can use this information and re-run the stake command, as stated above we recommend you do not use autostake unless you have high confidence that all your collaborators will also restake their contributions.

stake <Service Node Pubkey> <address> <contribution amount>

For operators of closed pools we recommend that you contact all participants in your pool and recommend they disable autostake before re-registration begins, unless you can ensure a scenario where you have high confidence in all staking participants. Operators who are also using autostake to re-register their Service Node should consider their pool participants and whether they will be staking in the next period, if not they may need to adjust their pool using the prepare_registration command.

Open Pools

Open pools are pools for which there is no specified contribution addresses. Anyone can contribute to an open pool without notifying the pool operator.
For open pools in version 1.0.4 we have disabled the autostake feature. This is due to the high risk for operators or contributors to inadvertently lock funds due to a lack of communication. Additionally using autostake in open pools in the current implementation fails to reduce the amount of the stake as per the decreasing staking requirement.

Therefore we recommend that anyone who operates or is a participant in an an open pool terminate any wallet which is autostaking. Open pools are still available in version 1.0.4, however they only allow the client to use the stake command without the auto flag.  

As with all other Loki, Loki that was staked in open pools will be unlocked and the user is free to use this Loki in the same open pool (if it exists) by using the stake command as shown below:

stake <Service Node Pubkey> <address> <contribution amount>

Operators of open pools can also continue running open pools without autostake by running the prepare_registration command and submitting output through their wallet, users can be notified of the specifics of the new open pool when it is available.

User experience
We are looking at making changes to the user experience of staking in the future which will make the process less clunky and also reduce the risk of the user locking their funds without acting intentionally dishonestly.