10 questions to blockchain! Hidden behind the curtain what “mystery”?

Since the beginning of 2018, “blockchain” has rapidly detonated the global market and has been highly sought after by the capital markets. This has caused heated calls from all walks of life. Almost all of the shares of the “blockchain” express car soared and became the “new darling” of the capital market. At the same time, the entire blockchain market under the boom has become a “heartbeat” for many people in the industry.

How the future of blockchain will be? The market will show what kind of situation? What are the problems? How should we be rational?

In response to some problems or puzzles existing in the current blockchain industry, many industry or media friends have had exchanges with me. I will specifically talk about my views here for reference purposes only.

1, bitcoin in the end is not a bubble?

On this issue, let us look back at the “tulip” incident. From 1593, tulips were introduced into Western Europe and the tulip market collapsed in 1637, during which the tulip trading market existed for about 30-40 years. From the perspective of time, people have a hundred years of life, dealing with capital probably for the time of thirty or fifty years. When the length of an asset’s life cycle exceeds that of an individual, let us discuss whether it is a bubble, It is not meaningful.

If bitcoin’s life cycle is long enough to go beyond individual existence. By that time you say that it is a conspiracy or a bubble. Any individual viewpoint or idea will not seem so important to such a long time.

As for whether bitcoin is a bubble or not, we can not deny the viability of bitcoin and its acceptance of the “value” of a huge consensus group behind it. In addition, there are negative aspects of bitcoin, such as “dark net use”, “money laundering” and so on, but this is not the problem of bitcoin itself. Such as chess, it is a positive, educational activities, but also some people used to trick money in the streets, or used to gamble. Even legal coins, some people used to engage in illegal activities. So I think the nature of bitcoin is not so complicated conspiracy exists, the focus is still on the people who use it.

2, bitcoin whether there is real value?

I have had contacts with people in many trades and industries. There have also been some discussions in this area. Some of them think that it is only valuable to have an anchor behind the assets. I think this is not reasonable. Today, the reputation of a person or an institution can exist as a financial derivative. It does not need to anchor an object, such as some of the wealth management software in our mobile phones now, and can borrow through personal credit.

So I think an item is valuable, does not necessarily require anchoring, or require government endorsement. Like the balls, cards, etc. we used to play as children, these items are valuable to children. In the group of children, these items are hard currency and can be exchanged (traded). This is how consensus groups give things The value given.

Therefore, whether a thing is valuable or not lies not in the thing itself, but in the consensus group behind the thing. In this world, the asset value does not necessarily need to endorse the government, the market-oriented behavior can also be given its value, today’s bitcoin is the case.

3, bitcoin can replace the legal status of the currency?

In my opinion, the logic that Bitcoin can replace French coins is not valid. One is the government to determine the right, one is driven by the market-driven valuation, the two are essentially different.

In addition, the values ​​they carry are not the same. Bitcoins carry the values ​​conferred by the community or marketization groups, representing the belief and consensus of the groups behind them, matching the personal interests and values ​​of the holders; and the legal currency carries the values ​​of the state, endorsed by the government and endured Law recognition and protection, but also fit the national conditions and price system of the host country, both to ensure the stability of the national economic system, but also to promote the development of people’s livelihood.

And the role of legal currency in many cases, but also bitcoin can not be replaced. For example, legal currency can achieve the purpose of macroeconomic regulation and control through issuance, Bitcoin can not; at the same time, the legal currency can respond to the economic crisis through the corresponding monetary policy under certain circumstances, while bit can hardly do this.

From these points of view, bitcoin and legal currency are very different ideologically and functionally, so I think it is very hard for bitcoin to replace the position of legal tender.

4, bitcoin and other token whether there is a difference?

Before I talk about this issue, I would like to express my personal position. First of all, it is not to encourage and encourage everyone to participate in this field. It is for everyone to have a rational understanding of what is happening today. We objectively analyze these situations and, before the bubble comes , Professional investors should vote out the money, retail investors should focus on risk control, because there is great asymmetric information, or even suggested not to participate, for iico team to get funding projects should assume the responsibility and trust to help society Create more value than transfer wealth.

From the perspective of the entire market, there are two main types of digital currencies: one is bitcoin, and the other is token with endorsement of actual projects.

For many people, they are digital currencies, no difference. However, from the point of view of value attributes, both have similarities and differences. The common denominator is that both map their faith and consensus behind the group. The difference is that Bitcoin, led by digital currency, highlights the monetary attributes, is a tool for trading, storage and accounting; the latter highlights the value created by the project team in the future, the subject is the future revenue .

So in my opinion, the difference between the two lies in the value of the property.

5, digital currency led by Bitcoin, is creating a new virtual world?

I personally reject the notion of “virtual world,” because this argument seems to me to be a fallacy.

In primordial society, the transactional relationship is achieved by way of barter. With the development of our society, new technical means have changed the medium of exchange, thus changing the mode of transaction, but the essence of the transaction has not actually changed.

Strictly speaking, our assets have actually been virtualized once. From the barter of the original period to the abstract of shells, gold and silver, joss sticks and banknotes, these are the process of asset virtualization. With the development of science and technology, transaction media gradually update the iteration, the modern emergence of banknotes, contracts, warehouse receipts, notes and so on, all of which are value substitutes for asset virtualization and are given transaction attributes. By the Internet age, the number of 0101, represented by computer languages, has become the mainstream value substitute, which in turn is an asset virtualization process.

The same is true for the blockchain and its digital assets. It is no different from the paper money in our pockets and the gold and silver of a few hundred years ago. They are the medium of exchange for tradable transactions and are different “currency” manifestations of different historical stages.

So I think it’s a fallacy that many people call digital things virtual worlds. Today’s world and the world in the past, in essence, no change, the development of science and technology just changed our trading methods and trading medium, did not change the nature of our transactions.

Blockchain technology is a must-have technology. It solves the urgent need of current society for the circulation of digital assets, brings us new ways of value circulation, and poses challenges to our existing social organization. Although it now presents some short-term problems and changes beyond the expectations of society, it will eventually become accepted by the general public as the popularity of new ideas brings the idea that this is in line with historical developments law.

6, some personal views on the situation of blockchain financing

From a different perspective, on the one hand, the current secondary market is flooded with a large number of misappropriated items. The mixed results make it difficult for investors to tell the difference between good and bad items and even derelict bad money. On the other hand, no matter how we look today in this market chaos, there is an objective fact already before us: the blockchain has brought about a global secondary market. This secondary market carries a large amount of assets and no longer needs a centralized organization to maintain the digital asset security. It is entirely carried by an autonomous, distributed technology system.

At present, many projects or enterprises are stimulating communities and developing projects through the power of the secondary market and the funds brought by value investors or speculators. In theory, this is a positive and meaningful thing. After all, no blockchain, there is no such a large secondary market.

From the point of view of the industry as a whole, a commercial ecology prototype maintained by a blockchain technology has formed today. Although it has not been as perfect as our imagination, although there are still many projects in which bubbles still exist, we can not deny that the future possible belt The positive meaning of coming.

7, blockchain technology to bring the biggest change may be what?

The existence of blockchain does bring some new phenomena and changes. Personally think that the biggest change may be mainly in the organizational structure, and even bring about change.

Historically, innovations in science and technology or economic systems have brought about social changes.

In the early part of the last century, because capitalists monopolized the means of production and laborers were unable to carry out their own production, resulting in a disproportion between pay and benefits of laborers and greatly undermining the social and economic development at that time. This was the “alienated labor” phenomenon put forward by Marx .

With the progress of society and technological development, the recent emergence of equity and options and the new economic rules have enabled more workers to participate in the distribution of wealth, enhanced the enthusiasm of workers and the efficiency of social production. In the past year or two, a new kind of technological innovation – the birth of a “shared economy” has once again subverted our social patterns.

The social form before the sharing of the economy is the society controlled by the centralized institution. Any individual must participate in the distribution of wealth, must join a commercial organization and serve for it, and get paid. The business nature of the monopoly is the pursuit of profits, is the expansion of scale, the balance of wealth is tilted to the interests of the organization, the individual’s right to speak minimal. The shared economy is a national incentive model that emphasizes “paid sharing,” and all individuals involved in sharing receive a matching return. Just as Uber connects private owners and passengers, Airbnb connects individual landlords and travelers with accommodation needs. In this process, individuals (service providers and demand-side) are decision-makers and beneficiaries, and the central discourse power is correspondingly weakened, which ultimately affects the distribution of wealth and the structure of social organizations.

Equity options are centered within the scope of incentives to expand and promote the distribution of wealth. In the context of decentralization, the shared economy is encouraged by the general public and promotes a more rational distribution of wealth. From the perspective of the blockchain, it has a broader scope of motivation and connects all the institutions and individuals in the world. At the same time, the blockchain can lower the threshold of trust and share resources and services, so as to form a better and more fair Social organization form. Although the central decision-making body is inevitable in the process, the blockchain can be more transparent and fair.

8, in order to achieve the real standardization of blockchain market?

To borrow Hegel’s famous quote: “Existence is reasonable.” I think the chaos in the current blockchain market is a process that new things must go through.

Take the Internet, at the very beginning of its birth, when the great potential of the Internet was realized by people, a lot of money was blindly put into the network. Capitalists, speculators and retail investors poured in with the tide like today. As a result, the bubble was soaring. Until the bubble burst in 2001, the craze collapsed.

Comparing the development of the Internet, we find that the chaos of profits often comes from the lack of a reasonable system and normative guidance in the market. This is like a child without parents, the imperfect environment for growth, will inevitably lead to its brutal growth. This is not to say that the chaos we have seen so far is reasonable, but rather to say that “barbaric growth” is a stage from birth to growth that has to go through. This is one of the natural attributes of the market. The Internet, The stock market so, blockchain as well.

9, on the policy direction of the future

Starting from September 4, the entire monetary policy circle has become tighter. Various rumors of regulation have also come one after another. Here are some of my opinions. Personally think that September 4 issued a document, to do pretty. Because at that time the brutal growth of the market, there are some uncontrolled, more crazy. But how to go behind, I can not give an accurate judgment.

In my opinion, the global secondary market, its existence has more positive impact on the convergence of capital and circulation of funds. If the secondary market is not completely eliminated, the traditional capital will surely tilt toward the global capital market and the share of the traditional capital market will therefore shrink. As a result, many new startup projects, or projects that require funding, will become more difficult to fund (less well aligned with the healthy development of innovative markets).

However, I believe that with the development of the industry and the market changes in the future, we will launch some better policies at an appropriate time to guide the circulation of funds and the correct flow of funds so as to promote a more rational distribution of funds so as to help those who are genuine Good projects or enterprises, to create more social values ​​and wealth, so that more people enjoy the social dividend brought about by the development of science and technology.

10, the current block chain market how to be positive and healthy development?

“One thousand readers, there are a thousand Hamlet,” and there are different opinions about people who are different about this issue. In my opinion, blockchain technology today does bring about many changes, but there are also many problems. The birth of these problems stems from “information asymmetry” and “lack of professional judgment.”

At present, although there are many projects on the market, the information between the investors and holders of the project is not equal. As a result, many project investors can only blindly follow and vote for candidates. At the same time, the popularity of blockchain knowledge is relatively low, and ordinary people find it hard to make professional judgments in this regard.

Therefore, I think that the future development of the market for blockchain must be realized through the combination of market-driven and government regulation.

In the future, there will certainly be professional “brokers” driven by the market. They will have more professional judgment, be able to take on the responsibility of channeling funds and reconciling the market, solve the information asymmetry in the digital money market, and lack the professional judgment in the market And other challenges, thus helping the entire market toward a more positive and healthy direction. At the same time, the reasonable regulation of policies can reasonably limit the market behavior of “brokers” within the legal framework.

As a result, market-driven makes “brokers” can be a good reminder of the market vitality, policy control control “broker” behavior, to prevent market risk. Market-driven and regulatory policies complement each other and work together to create a positive and healthy market environment.


Coincidentally, technology and belief, which is to make big brother sleepless blockchain the truth?

Do you want to spend time learning the blockchain?

– nonsense, do not learn, when you abandon this era, even a greeting will not fight!

The general idea of ​​this chain has created fanatic blockchain today.

Ordinary people anxiety, I do not know blockchain and virtual currency, will not miss the virtual currency brings wealth distribution opportunities? Entrepreneurs and investors even more anxious, I do not know blockchain technology and application scenarios, will not miss the opportunity to create / invest the next BAT?

In the just past Spring Festival holiday, this kind of anxiety has risen to a new height, which is embodied in the WeChat group of “3 o’clock No-sleep Blockchain.”

The group gathered a circle of venture capital chiefs and science and technology circle, known as the “1 trillion market capitalization community”, from the beginning of the second day of daily debate debate block chain. Both the founder of real fund Xu Xiaoping, angel investors Xue Manzi, founder of Lily Network Mu Yan, founder of Long Link capital Cai Wensheng, the founder of quantum chain handsome early, but also in Zheng, Tong Li Ya, Gao Xiaosong and other entertainment circles.

Here are big guys discussing how blockchain will change all walks of life, how valuable bitcoin will be in the future, and how investors choose the project with caution.

For example, Cai Wensheng, founder of Long Link Capital and chairman of Meituxiu Sau Xiu, strongly believes that with the rapid development of the blockchain, changes will be faster and faster. Only by adapting to changes and changing iterations will we have a chance. Although most ICO (issue of token financing) are “cut chives”, but its advantage is to lower the threshold for ordinary investors to enter the primary market. In the future, if most are digital currencies, the original securities firms would have to change to digital currency.

Xue Mansheng, who instilled the idea of ​​investing in the blockchain into Cai Wensheng, expressed his opinions in the group. The blockchain will first transform the financial industry. All things that require leadership certification at all levels, birth certificates, marriage certificates, land Housing property transactions proved that the company’s business registration, tax rebate policy, etc. will soon be revolutionized. At the same time do not forget to remind people to “understand the blind participation in the activities such as coin issuance and speculation coins not only high-risk behavior, more likely to be suspected of violating the local laws of investors,” “We learn the mentality of the blockchain, The difference between coins. ”

However, in fact, “chain” and “coin” with the same family, is the “currency” of the lively, just the concept of “chain” into ordinary people’s homes.

Into the mainstream

Let’s see what happened to the chain and the currency ring in the past few years:

Bitcoin was born in 2009, and in his paper, Nakamoto describes a decentralized trading system that uses cryptography to allow traders to keep books under the supervision of all traders and prevent double accounting, Tampering with the books Bitcoin is a reward for bookkeeping behavior, and blockchain is the underlying technology of the system.

In the first few years, people did not discuss the blockchain alone. The expansion of Bitcoin from geeks to other circles is the rise in the price of the currency.

Around 2011, a number of grassroots bitcoin believers began to emerge in China. In 2013, more ordinary users learned about bitcoin. In that year, bitcoin rose from 85 yuan in January to 8,500 yuan in November, triggering large-scale media coverage. In 2014, there was already Bitcoin in Bitcoin Payment cafe.

Although from the end of 2013 to the present, the price of the currency has risen nearly 10 times, but can still be put in the hands of the minority now. Because after the plunge in the price of the currency, by the beginning of January 2015 had less than 800 yuan. Roller coaster-style rise and fall so that investors in general “faith” collapsed, but those who forgot to buy bitcoin, recently “accidentally” recovered, “extraterrestrial” extra pen wealth.

At the undervalued period of 2014 and 2015, some people finally paid attention to the blockchain. Some practitioners started to discuss the feasibility of blockchain in other industries.

This is the so-called “chain.” Unlike the “currency ring”, which focuses on virtual currency assets, they are out of bitcoin and focus on the development of blockchain technology. The digital currency has nothing to do with the ups and downs of them. Two circles do not see each other.

Due to the lack of application scenarios, the days of the chain have not been good until the ICO craze appears. In April 2016, The DAO announced its external fundraising, which raised 12 million U.S. dollars worth of 132 million U.S. dollars in 27 days. Four months later, NEO successfully completed two ICOs, triggering the ICO boom in 2017.

At the beginning of 2017, bitcoin prices rose above RMB8,000 at the peak of 2013. By the middle of the year, all kinds of blockchain projects have been mushroomed for ICO, just want a white paper to melt hundreds of millions of dollars. There even appeared a currency celebrity Li Xiaolai no white paper but the financing of 200 million US dollars of the myth.

At this time, some chain companies rely on the ICO to taste the sweetness of the money circle overnight, while more technology-focused companies are indifferent to these crazy. They are often in Zhongguancun office buildings, reassuringly write their own code, the rejection of the ICO attitude, stressed that, like other Internet companies, the traditional way of financing, throwing the phrase “99% of ICO projects are money “.

Sure enough, crazy unsustainable, regulatory agencies across the board the ICO model. In September, the central bank one paper, “on the prevention of financing of the issue of tokens issued a notice of funding,” banned all ICO. Next, China’s two largest Bitcoin exchanges, Firecoin and OKCoin, suspended their trading and Chinese regulators started to revoke the bitcoin mining business.

Some practitioners will look abroad, go overseas to issue projects, continue ICO, trading platform also turned to layout overseas markets. CBOE, the largest U.S. exchange market, launched Bitcoin Futures in December.

The coin ring began to be approved by the mainstream financial system.

On the eve of the Spring Festival, the United States held two thematic hearings on virtual currency regulation and blockchain technology respectively on February 6 and February 14 local time. Regulators officials, official think tanks and business leaders put forward the principle of “Do no harm” and “hug technology” to the blockchain, which is interpreted by some in the country as “the United States consensus in the blockchain has formed.” In fact, , This statement has no basis, the US Securities and Exchange Commission is clearly stated that “unregistered ICO project are illegal, Congress may need to change the financial laws to better monitor the virtual currency.”

Formation of tuyere

This year is different from last year, people are no longer shouting ICO, but called for embracing the blockchain. Some people commented that this is nothing but a funeral, just like cloud computing in the past, O2O and artificial intelligence. However, this time the blockchain tuyere because of its confusing and more fascinating, because of its extensive coverage and was pulled to a higher level.

In the no-sleep blockchain at 3 o’clock, Cai Wensheng said that the underlying structure of the blockchain is mathematical logic, that middle-level thinking is philosophical thinking and that top-level is theological belief. Yuan Yuan, founder of Century Internet Data Center, one of the earliest proponents of domestic blockchain, believes that the blockchain has surpassed religion and social contract and become the new trust mechanism of human civilization, the new mode of production credit and the supply of new economy Side reforms.

To explore the reasons for the formation of the outlet, probably the following:

First of all, the blockchain is not a new technology, or it is not just technology, it is also a philosophical view of economics + philosophy + cryptography + mathematics + computer, which extends the circle of participants from technical circles to All walks of life.

Blockchain entrepreneurs in the field of identity verification told me that blockchain is not a new technology, and that cryptography and distributed computing have been involved for many years, and when they are put together, they show a new charm. When he came into contact with the technology in Silicon Valley in 2014, he felt “a moment ago, and when you continue to explore it, you are fascinated by the technology that is very interesting and shows the potential of transforming the future. world.”

Because blockchain technology can not establish trust relationships on the Internet, without the intervention of third-party center, participants can reach a consensus and solve the problem of reliable delivery of trust and value at a very low cost.

Proponents believe this technology can change the future, though it does not know how long it will take until it matures. But as Cai Wensheng said, “Blockchain is the largest bubble in history since mankind … We can only embrace the bubble, and participation is the greatest risk.”

Second, the blockchain is still in its infancy, and people are happy: whether they have the chance to find that suitable scenario and dominate the next subversion.

In addition to bitcoin, there are currently no widely used floorplans in the blockchain.

Big companies are still testing water, small companies can do? In an FT Chinese net salon before the Spring Festival, the investor who arranged the blockchain industry, Sun Tao Tao, executive director of Shenzhou Fu said that start-up companies have absolutely no chance of competing with giants because all aspects of capital and talent can not be compared with large companies . The ant gold vice president of different views: whether the company has a chance, depending on your focus, rather than the size of the company.

In front of the opportunity, nobody wants to miss it.

Again, which outlet is so close from the money, and comes with hematopoietic function? The breakthrough in the existing financial system not only gives the blockchain a greater space for development, but also makes it easy to push it into the abyss.

Some people say that China has the world’s largest “leek”, which is inevitably for the ill-intentioned people.

Sun said that they made statistics that at least 80% of the ICO projects in the market are “traps” in the digital currency eco-packaging or lack of project support, becoming the means of pyramid selling or having great “moisture” and ” The blockchain cat-and-dog game is a good place to start. “” I never thought the blockchain was a solution to everything, and even tied it to AI and quantum computing to the next generation of technology, which probably Are all too high on the blockchain … I have not seen a solution so far and have seen a tremendous improvement in parallelism in the blockchain. ”

However, he also optimizes that blockchain will play a role in three areas: the areas that need to be identified; the natural topology of the Internet of Things, blockchain network architecture topologies and intelligent hardware, and the Internet of Things; intellectual property-related replication All contributors should be paid more.

Stir up controversy

Back to the “3 o’clock no sleep blockchain” micro-channel group, in order to eliminate the debate about money corrupt the group, the group rules not to mention making money. Po Eryong want to talk about making money was kicked out of the group.

Who is Po Erye? He was formerly known as Guo Hongcai, the founder of Bitangel Fund, who sold beef in the early years and later all in the blockchain. In 2014, he built the mines in Inner Mongolia and was known as the pioneer and leader of Bitcoin by the currency ring.

He spoke outspoken about why he was kicked: “Mainly because I’m honest, and it’s all vernacular … They say blockchain is a lot nicer … but they just did not mention money, they did not talk about making money, I That you are too faint … … all into the currency in the so-called big V actually want to come in to make money, he is not just trying to come in to join in the fun, he is not to purely study technology … So we see clearly the nature of the industry Since it is a entertainment circle, we put this entertainment circle children play big. ”

Another storm on this group, from the Jinsha River venture capital fund partner Zhu Xiaohu and fast taxi founder, founder Pan Weicheng capital.

Zhu Xiaohu in the circle of friends forwarded a continuous article engraved Eagle entrepreneurs, the article wrote “no one raised the block chain in 457 days” and commented “Do not pull me into a variety of 3 o’clock group, some outlets would rather miss, and some Qian Ning would like to earn, we take care of the evening. ”

Chen Weixing said in the group that the other touts himself as an investment genius in order to “cut off the investors’ leeks and market the aunt leeks for their own projects.” After that also said the opportunity to share cycling ofo lies in the blockchain, Dewey interviewed and excited for many times.

Zhu Xiaohu hit back “professional investment institutions have their own professional considerations and strategic needs, and ordinary retail the same?” Ofo quickly clarify not consider the ICO, but will focus on the blockchain.

And every round of their “move” will lead to some discussion. Whether it is a 3-point group or a forked group, each of the other block-chain groups and big-timers may make a little splash in this circle and become an article. Accompanied by big brothers “dreaming”, there are emerging media. According to the Beijing News reported that just in January this year, at least 50 blockchain from the media, a public account number two weeks to win the financing, the valuation of 10 million.

Later, I asked an investor in 3-point group, did not you sleep at 3 o’clock? He said: “Yeah, I sleep for 4 to 6 hours.


A major breakthrough! MIT Announces New Neural Network Chip to Reduce Power by 95%

The desire to equip artificial intelligence devices, such as smartphones, home appliances, and various IoT devices, is driving the bigwigs in Silicon Valley to move to low-power artificial intelligence chips.

Neural networks are very powerful, but they require a lot of energy. MIT engineers are now developing a new chip that can reduce the power consumption of neural networks by 95%, which may make it run on battery-powered mobile devices.

Smartphones are becoming smarter and smarter, providing more and more artificial intelligence services such as digital assistants and real-time translators. However, the neural networks that perform data operations on these services are usually in the cloud, and the data on smartphones is also transmitted back and forth in the cloud.

This is not an ideal state because it requires a lot of communication bandwidth, and this means potentially sensitive data is being transmitted and stored on servers that are not under user control. However, the normal operation of the graphics processor’s neural network requires a lot of energy, making it impractical to run a neural network on a battery-limited device.

Engineers at MIT have now devised a chip that drastically reduces the need to transfer data back and forth between the chip’s memory and the processor, reducing power consumption by 95%. Neural networks consist of thousands of interconnected artificial neurons layer by layer. Each neuron receives input from multiple neurons in its next layer, and if this combined input passes a particular threshold, it sends the output to multiple neurons in the upper layer. The strength of the connection between neurons is governed by the weights set during training.

This means that, for each neuron, the chip must retrieve the input data for a particular connection and the connection weights from memory, multiply them, store the result, and repeat the procedure on each input. This requires a lot of data movement, and therefore consumes a lot of energy. The new MIT chips look another way, using analog circuitry to calculate all inputs in parallel in memory. This drastically reduces the amount of data that needs to be pushed and ultimately saves a lot of energy. This method requires that the weight of the connection be a binary rather than a series of values, but previous theoretical work showed that this did not have a significant impact on the accuracy of the chip. The researchers found that the chip’s results basically consisted of running on a standard computer Traditional non-binary neural networks within 2% to 3%.

This is not the first time researchers have created chips to process data in memory to reduce the power consumption of neural networks, but this is the first time this method has been used to run powerful convolutional nerves for image-based AI applications The internet. Dario Gil, vice president of artificial intelligence at IBM, said in a statement: “The results of the study show impressive performance when using memory arrays for convolution operations, which will surely provide future images and Video classification provides more complex convolutional neural networks. ”

However, not only the research team is studying this issue. The desire to equip artificial intelligence devices, such as smartphones, home appliances, and various IoT devices, is driving the bigwigs in Silicon Valley to move to low-power artificial intelligence chips.

Apple has integrated its Neural Engine chip into iPhone X to enhance its facial recognition technology. According to legend, Amazon is developing its own custom AI chip for the next generation of Echo digital assistants. Large chip companies are also increasingly inclined to support advanced features like machine learning, which also forces them to upgrade their devices to be more energy-efficient. Earlier this year, ARM introduced two new chips: the ARM machine learning processor, a chip that focuses on artificial intelligence tasks, from translation to face recognition, and the other is the ARM Object detection processor.

Qualcomm’s latest mobile chip Snapdragon 845 equipped with a graphics processor, and artificial intelligence as the top priority. The company also released the Snapdragon 820E chip, mainly for drones, robots and industrial equipment. In the longer term, IBM and Intel are developing a neuromorphic chip whose architecture is inspired by the human brain and its amazing energy efficiency. In theory, this allows IBM’s TrueNorth chip and Intel’s Loihi chip to run robust machine learning with only a fraction of the energy required by legacy chips, but at this stage both technologies are still high Experimental stage.

Making these chips run as powerful as the cloud computing service would be a huge challenge. But at the current rate of innovation, it’s not too long before the artificial intelligence reaches you at your fingertips.


Ali senior technical experts: how to maintain system stability in double 11 trillion flow?

Tair history

Tair is widely used in Alibaba, whether it is Taobao Lynx Browse Orders, or open Youku browse play, behind the Tair figure silently support huge traffic. Tair’s history is as follows:

  • 2010.04 Tair v1.0 officially launched @ Taobao core system;
  • 2012.06 Tair v2.0 Launches LDB Persistence Products to Meet Persistent Storage Requirements;
  • 2012.10 Launched RDB cache product and introduced Redis interface to meet the storage requirements of complex data structures.
  • 2013.03 Reducing the lead-in time and access delay on the on-line Fastdump products on the basis of LDB on the basis of LDB import;
  • 2014.07 Tair v3.0 officially launched, performance several times increase;
  • 2016.11 Thai intelligent operation and maintenance platform on the line, helping 2016 double 11 into the billions of times;
  • 2017.11 Performance Leap, Hot Hash, Resource Scheduling, Supporting Trillions of Traffic.
  • Tair is a high-performance, distributed, scalable, and reliable key / value fabric storage system! Tair features are mainly reflected in the following areas:
  • High Performance: Guaranteed Low Latency at High Throughput, Tair is one of the largest systems in the Alibaba Group, with double 11 calls at 500 million spikes per second with an average latency of less than 1 millisecond;
  • High availability: Through the automatic failover, current limiting, auditing and computer room disaster and multi-unit multi-area, to ensure that the system can work under any circumstances;
  • Large-scale: distributed data centers around the world, Ali BU each BU are in use;
  • Business coverage: e-commerce, ants, one, rookie, high German, Ali health and so on.
  • Tair in addition to the common Key / Value system provides functions such as get, put, delete, and bulk interfaces, there are some additional practical features, making it a wider application scenarios. Tair application scenarios include the following four:
  • MDB Typical Application Scenario: Used for caching and reducing the pressure on the back-end database. For example, the products in Taobao are cached in Tair. For temporary data storage, some data loss will not have a big impact on the service, for example, login ;
  • LDB typical application scenarios: common kv storage, transaction snapshot, security control, etc .; storage of black and white single data, read qps high; counter function, the update is very frequent, and the data can not be lost.
  • Typical RDB scenarios: Caching and storing complex data structures, such as playlists, live broadcasts, etc.
  • FastDump Typical Application Scenario: Periodically offline data is quickly imported into the Tair cluster, the rapid use of new data, the requirements for online read very high; read low latency, can not have glitches.

Double 11 challenge how to do?

As shown in the figures for 2012-2017, the GMV was less than 20 billion in 2012, 168.2 billion GMV in 2017, the peak of transaction creation was from 14,000 to 325,000 and the peak QPS was increased from 13 million to nearly 500 million.

As can be seen from the figure, tair visit growth rate far greater than the transaction to create the peak, the transaction is also greater than the peak to create GMV growth. At 0:00, for Tair, the challenge is how to ensure low latency and how to ensure that costs are lower than business growth.

For distributed storage systems, hot issues are more difficult to solve. The caching system traffic is particularly large, hot issues are more prominent. 2017 Double 11, we passed the hot hash, completely solve the problem of cache hot spots.

At the same time, in order to carry 325,000 transactions per second, Ali’s technology architecture has evolved into a multi-geo-multi-cell architecture, not only using the unit on Aliyun, but also has a mix of offline services unit, where the challenge for us How to quickly and flexibly deploy and off-site cluster.

Multi-regional multi-unit

Look at our general overall deployment architecture and tair in the system position. As you can see from this diagram, we are a multi-site multi-cell multi-cell deployment architecture. The entire system from the traffic access layer, to the application layer. Then the application layer relies on a variety of middleware, such as message queues, configuration centers and so on. The bottom is the underlying data layer, tair and database. At the data level, we need to do the required data synchronization for the business to ensure the top-level business is stateless.

Multi-geo-multi-cell In addition to preventing black swans, another important role is to be able to achieve the flow of the bearer section by going online one unit quickly. Tair has also made a complete set of control system to achieve fast and flexible station building.

Flexible station

Tair itself is a very complex distributed storage system, the scale is very large. So we have an operation and management platform In this process through the task scheduling, task execution, validation and delivery processes to ensure fast one-click station, from the fast mixing fast cluster on the work. After the deployment is completed, it will undergo a series of system, cluster, instance connectivity verification to ensure that the service is complete and then delivered on-line use. If there is a hint of omission, a large-scale failure may be triggered when business traffic comes up. In this case, in the case of a persisted cluster with data, after the deployment is completed, it is also necessary to wait for the migration of the stock data to complete and the data to be synchronized before entering the verification phase.

Each Tair’s business cluster has a different water level. For each full link measurement before double 11, the Tair resources used will change as the business model changes, resulting in changes in water levels. In this case, we need to suppress Tair resources scheduled across multiple clusters each time. If the water level is low, some of the machine’s server resources will be moved to the water level to reach the value of all cluster water levels.

data synchronization

Multi-geographic multi-unit, we must be able to do the data layer to achieve data synchronization, and can provide a variety of business read and write modes. For the unitized business, we provide the unit with the ability to access local Tair, and for some non-unitized businesses, we also provide a more flexible access model. Synchronization delay is something we have been doing. In 2017, with double-digit synchronization data of 10 million units per second, how to better solve the problem of non-unitized data write conflicts in multi-cell units? This is what we have always considered.

Performance optimization costs down

Server costs do not fall linearly at 30% or 40% per year as traffic increases linearly. We achieve this goal primarily through server performance optimization, client performance optimization, and different business solutions.

First look at how we from the server side to enhance performance and reduce costs. Here’s the work is divided into two major pieces: one is to avoid thread switching scheduling, reducing lock competition and lock-free, the other is to use the user state protocol stack + DPDK to run-to-completion in the end.

Memory data structure

We will apply for a large chunk of memory after the process has started, and format the formatting in memory. The main slab allocator, hashmap and memory pool, the memory will be filled after the LRU chain data obsolete. As the number of server CPUs continues to grow, it is difficult to improve overall performance if the lock contention is not well managed.

By referring to the various references, combined with tair’s own engine needs, we used fine-grained locks, lock-free data structures, CPU native data structures and RCU mechanisms to improve engine parallelism. The figure on the left shows the CPU consumption graph of each function module without optimization. You can see that the network part and the data search part consume the most. After optimization (right), 80% of the processing is on the network and data lookup, which is in line with We expect.

User mode protocol stack

Lock optimization, we found that a lot of CPU consumption in the kernel state, then we use DPDK + Alisocket to replace the original kernel state protocol stack, Alisocket uses DPDK in the user mode to receive the card, and use its own protocol stack to provide socket API , To integrate it. We compare tair, memcached and industry-leading seastar frameworks with performance gains of over 10% on seastars.

Memory consolidation

When performance increases, the amount of memory used by a unit of qps becomes less, so memory becomes scarce. Another status quo, tair is a multi-tenant system, each business behavior is not the same, often result in the page has been assigned, but many pages in slab are not full. A small number of slabs are indeed fully occupied, resulting in the appearance of capacity, but unable to allocate data.

At this point, we implemented a function that merges unused page memory in the same slab, freeing up a lot of free memory. Can be seen from the figure, in the same slab, record the usage of each page, and mount to different specifications of the bucket. The merger, the use of low page to high page usage merger. Also need to be associated with each data structure, including the LRU chain, equivalent to the entire memory structure of the reorganization. This feature is particularly effective in public clusters on the Internet, according to different scenarios, you can significantly improve the memory usage efficiency.

Client optimization

These are server-side changes, then look at the client’s performance. Our client is running on the client server, so take up the client’s resources. If we can reduce resource consumption as low as possible, for our entire system, the cost is favorable. Clients have done two aspects of optimization: network framework replacement, adaptation coroutine, from the original mina to netty, the throughput increased by 40%; serialization optimization, integrated kryo and hessian, the throughput increased by 16% +.

Memory grid

How to reduce overall Tair and business costs in combination with business? Tair provides multiple levels of storage integration to solve business problems, such as security risk control scenarios, read and write large, there is a large number of local computing, we can store the business machine in the local machine to access the data to be accessed, a large number of readers will hit the local , And writes can be merged over a period of time, after a certain period of time, the merged writes to the far-end Tair cluster as the final storage. We provide read-and-write penetration, including merger writing and the ability to have multiple copies of the original Tair itself, reducing the reading of Tair to 27.68% and the writing of Tair to 55.75% at 11am.

Hot problem has been solved

Cache breakdown

Cached from the beginning of a single point of development to distributed systems, organized by data sharding, but for each data shards, or as a single point exists. When there is a big promotion or hot news, the data is often on a slice, which will result in a single point of access, and then cache a node will not be able to withstand such a lot of pressure, resulting in a large number of requests no way to respond. A caching system is a self-protection method is limited. But the current limit for the entire system, does not work. After the current limit, part of the flow will go to the database, it still just said can not afford the same result, the entire system is abnormal.

So here, the only solution is that the caching system can serve as the endpoint for traffic. Whether big promotion, or hot news, or the business of their own anomaly. Cache can absorb these traffic out, and let the business to see the hot situation.

Hot hash

After a variety of programs to explore, using a hot hash scheme. We have evaluated the client-side local cache scheme and the secondary cache scheme, and they can solve the hot issue to a certain extent, but each has its own drawbacks. For example, the number of secondary cache servers can not be estimated, and the impact of the local cache scheme on the service-side memory and performance. The hot hash directly on the data node plus hotzone area, hotzone bear hot data storage. For the entire program, the key is the following steps:

Intelligent Recognition. Hot data is always changing, or frequency hot spots, or traffic hot spots. The internal implementation uses a multi-level LRU data structure and sets different weights to be placed on different levels of LRUs. Once the LRU data is full, the LRU chains will be eliminated from the low-level LRU chains to ensure that the high weights are reserved.

Real-time feedback and dynamic hashing. When visiting the hotspot, the appserver and the server will be linked together and dynamically hashed to other data hotZones according to the preset access model. All nodes in the cluster will take this function.

In this way, we will be the original single-point access to bear the traffic through some machines in the cluster to bear.

The whole project is very complex, hot hash has achieved a very significant effect in double 11. Peaks absorb more than 800 w of traffic per second. As you can see from the diagram to the right, the red line is the water level of the hot hash if the hot water level is not turned on and the green line is the hot water level. If not, many clusters exceed the death level, which is 130% of our cluster level. When turned on, the water level drops below the safety line by hashing the hotspots throughout the cluster. In other words, if not turned on, then many clusters may have problems.

Write hot

Write hotspots and hotspots have similarities, this is mainly through the merger write operation to implement. The first is still to identify the hot spots, if it is a hot write operation, then the request will be distributed to a special hot-combined thread processing, the thread based on the write request for a certain period of time the merger, followed by the timing thread in accordance with the default consolidation Cycle the merged request submitted to the engine layer. In this way to significantly reduce the pressure on the engine layer.

After a double 11 test on the reading and writing hot deal, we can safely say that Tair caching, including kv storage read and write hot spots completely resolved.