As many of you probably know, the Lesser Antilles in the Caribbean were battered this week by Hurricane Irma, one of, if not, the most powerful storms to hit the Caribbean. Barbuda was essentially annihilated (90% of building damaged or destroyed). Anguilla, a country of only 11,000, hasn’t fared too well either.
What some, but not all, in the Financial Cryptography/crypto-currency community may not know is that Anguilla was home to the first and several subsequent International Financial Cryptography Conferences from 1997. The association, IFCA, still bears that legacy with the TLD of .ai, ifca.ai. The paper presented at IFCA conference and the discussions held by many of its participants paved the ground for Tor, Bitcoin and the crypto-currency revolution. Eventually, the conference had grown to big for this tiny island.
More directly, two of the founders of that conference, Bob Hettinga and Vince Cate, currently live on Anguilla. While they have since separated from IFCA, their early evangelism was instrumental in the robust, thriving and important work developed at the conference throughout the years. Bob and Vince were both directly affected by the hurricane, though not their spirit. Here is a quote from Bob about the aftermath:
Have a big wide racing stripe of missing aluminum from front to back. Sheets of water indoors when it rains. Gonna tarp it over tomorrow though. Sort of a rear vent across the back of the great room. See the videos. Blew out three steel accordion shutters covering three sliding glass doors. 200mph winds? No plywood on the island, much less aluminum.
Airport has no tower anymore. SXM airport had its brand new terminal demolished. Royal Navy tried to land at the commercial pier but the way was blocked. Rum sodomy and the lash.
We need money of course, blew a bunch prepping, etc. No reserves to speak of even then. Gotta pay people to do a bunch of stuff, but the ATMs are down so people are just doing shit anyway. Works in our favor except to buy actual stuff. We hadda a little cash stashed in the house and paid about half of that boarding up three of the six demolished sliding glass doors. Tomorrow we’ll put the MICR numbers off one of [Mrs RAH’s] checks here, so you can wire us money if you want. Heh. It still might be weeks before we get it. Or days. Just no idea right now.
If we can get the materials replacing the aluminum on the roof can be done in a couple days. Getting it here under normal circumstances would take weeks.
Certainly months now.
Then we have to rip out and replace all the Sheetrock in the house, basically all the closets and bathrooms and the inner bedroom walls. Again days to fix, months to do.
All the gas pumps on the island were flattened. Literally blown away. That makes thing interesting. A couple grocery stores are open, but who knows how long there inventories will hold up.
See “Royal Navy” above.
Both cisterns fine. 38000 gallons total. Full. Wind ripped off the gutters so no discernible salt in the water. And little floating litter on top. We’ve got water, and we can pull buckets out of the cisterns until the cows come home. I’d been looking at building a hand pump out of PVC and check valves, and now I have some incentive.
Car needs brake work. Threw the error codes the day after the storm. Supposed to park it and have the shop come and get it. Heh. No shop anymore. No money so it works out. 🙂 Car exists to charge the smartphones at the moment. Full tank. Life is good
See the rain from inside Bob’s house during the Hurricane.
I’m making this post to request that the community support Bob, Vince and the island of Anguilla. We can’t help the entire Caribbean but we can donate to efforts to support them and our adoptive island of Anguilla.
For donations to support the island of Anguilla, please consider donating to the Help Anguilla Rebuild Now fund or individual recipients on this page
To help Bob or Vince, please contact them directly (or you can contact me). I will update this page with funding options as I’m made aware of them.
My contact information:
Email: rjc at privacymaverick