Since the days of the unbridled generosity of Saint Nicholas in the fourth century, Santa Claus has grown affectionately and deeply into our consciousness. At this time of year, the heart-pounding, hearty, happy chortles echo through the retail malls, embeeding in our ears and into the zeitgeist. However, all this could all be coming to an end.
Much as we all hate fake news, we are hearing totally unconfirmed and totally unsubstantiated rumours that as part of his first entrée into foreign policy, Donald Trump wants to build a wall around Greenland to stop the illegal elves coming in to help Santa – and he wants Santa to pay for it! It is said by those close to him to be part of his upcoming best-seller – 101 guide to great “precedential” leadership.
With estimates of around $16m per mile, given Greenland has over 27,000 miles of coastline – Santa’s bill could be in excess of $432bn. That means fewer toys for good children at Christmas time – and we can’t have that!
- So is Scrooge alive and well in Trump Tower?
- Could this be the end of the Christmas spirit?
- Would this mean the end of myriads of innocent, smiling kids’ faces globally?
Protests won’t deliver presents; what we need is direct action.
It is up to us as a technology community to rally together. It’s up to us as a technology community to leverage our expertise. It’s up to us as a technology community to keep Christmas alive and arrange delivery to all the good kids around the world! We must donate our time and expertise – open sourced kindness.
Don’t ask what technology can do for you – but what you can do for technology! We must use technology for the common good – and that common good is saving Santa and Christmas!
Santa already has his work cut out. With over 2bn children across the world and only 8 reindeer to help (9 if you include Rudolph that unofficially entered the fray in 1939) his work is tough enough as it is and we must all muck in. Call it payback for all the times he visited you as a kid. After all, here is a grossly overweight, grossly unfit, senior citizen who instead of patenting and commercialising the magic dust he gives to his reindeer to make them fly – one of the few opportunities Silicon Valley missed out on – he selflessly makes children smile.
While, given time zone differences, there are technically 31 hours to visit every home of good children in the world, if he travelled East to West, it’s stupidly hard work. How can he and Mrs Claus now pack all the presents without any elves in assistance and deliver all those the presents by themselves? Technology must play its part especially when it comes to optimising the SSC – Santa’s Supply Chain.
So here is the first draft twelve-step plan to save Christmas. This is a crowdsourced technology project so please feel free to add any ideas in the comments below.
1) Optimisation of The Brilliant Remote Algorithm for Tantrums Pack (BRAT – pack) – only good kids get toys. As with all good start-ups we are creating our MWP (minimum well-behaved product) to build a mobile app for parents have that will automatically monitor their kids’ behaviour linked into the decibels of the screams of mum and dad. Speech to text recognition, artificial intelligence and natural language processing will be used to measure key words and expressions, like “naughty”, ”go to your room”, “I won’t tell you again” and “Santa won`t leave you any presents ”. Open source Patented algorithms will then assess all these cries and screams over the previous week and when they remain below agreed thresholds will be sent to a cloud-based SaaS model – Sack as a Service.
2) SaaS – Sack as a Service – automated picking and packing of Santa gifts using barcodes generated from the BRAT Packs for the automated delivery of pressies in BRAT bags. A full API will be made available – Automated Present Insertion – for Peer to Peer Pressies
3) Peer to peer pressies – another useless sounding Uber look-alike will be created – peer to peer pressie packing. People from home can wrap and pack presents on a PPPP basis – a Pay Per Pressie Packed. Uber drivers will take the pressies to the automated Hub and Spoke Delivery centre, which means fewer Uber drivers around for the 31 hours of Santa’s traditional journey time enabling traditional taxi drivers to have a happier Christmas – after all even the totally disrupted need some good Christmas cheer at this time of the year.
4) Hub and Spoke Drone Delivery Centres. Pressies are delivered to the Drone Centre, which will have the red and white livery associated with Santa Claus – a licensing royalty will be paid to Santa for each dressed centre and for each suitably dressed drone. Each drone will have a lightly flashing red light – running the patented Rudolph emulation software – Rudolph has kindly agreed to donate all royalties to the Red Nose Charity.
5) Drone Delivery – Drones will integrate fully with the FEDS. To those that aren’t familiar, this is the Flue Extraction Delivery System. All deliveries will be confirmed by IoT and blockchain working together.
6) Internet of Things – upon the automated release of the product confirmation of the product into FEDS, sensors built into the chimney flue that will trigger a confirmatory receipt by scanning the BRAT pack barcode as it falls down the chimney. These sensors will send a message to confirm delivery with this information locked to the blockchain to confirm the transaction has taken place and that full transparency can be seen, easily refuting any naughty boys and girls saying they didn’t receive their gifts.
7) Blockchain – Once registered on the blockchain, these confirmations will trigger a smart contract that will automate the release of funds remotely from Chrissie Cringle HQ in the newly dubbed “Fortress Greenland” and all other payments to other contractors used in the Santa Supply Chain – all by automated smart contract.
8) Decentralised Autonomous Organisations Drones will be designed as the purveyor of the grossest and most ridiculous blockchain jargon possible – the Decentralised Autonomous Organisations – to send and receive monies automatically themselves (without any human intervention) via blockchain-based smart contracts – this is particularly important when it comes to the drones not running out of juice
9) Inducers – to minimise costs when installing the IoT sensors in the chimneys by official supply partners of the Chimney Licencing Authorisation Subcommittee (CLAUS), electromagnetic inducers will also be built into the Flue Extraction Delivery System that will charge the drones remotely while they deliver Santa’s gifts. Payments for the inducer’s electricity will be made by micropayments linked automatically via smart contracts into the earlier described, and most ridiculous descriptor known to man, beast or geek, the aforementioned Decentralised Autonomous Organisations – i.e. the drones themselves.
10) Geo-thermal Electricity– Santa needs to fund his activities. So, given the geothermal electricity generation that occurs already in nearby Iceland, we need to set up sustainable electricity generation using Greenland’s natural resources to generate electricity. Initially, Santa will then be able to mine bitcoin, with the warm springs powering the mining rigs in a sustainable fashion and bitcoin being produced in a great sustainable way – great for the Green economy in more ways than one.
11) Santa Coins With stage two we would like to create the Santa Cryptocurrency Coin and have Santa Miners mining Santa Coins all over the globe. Santa miners will once again have to wear the appropriate livery and pay an appropriate royalty, but as a piece of Christmas generosity “Ho! Ho! Ho!” will not be trademarked and no royalties will be requested.
12) Happiness consensus algorithm – like with all blockchains there will be a consensus algorithm where data is confirmed after 51% agreement from all the Santa Miners globally. This will be designed as a “proof of happiness” algorithm that enables the volume of happiness that you create to determine how many Santa Coins you can earn. You may choose to give Santa coins to anyone you feel has given sufficient happiness to children.
In this way:
- most importantly kids will keep their Christmas smiles,
- Santa won’t have to leave Greenland
- Santa will have a sustainable future, and
- Rudolph’s nose will be its normal black as he will be able to traipse free and unencumbered across the Greenland tundra and not have to fly at 33,000 feet in the jetstream at ridiculously low temperatures.
- the start-up community as a whole can show their resilience to being bullied and show their initiative in showing how necessity can be the mother of invention in anything to do with technology – and that sometimes tech can be fun.
As for Donald Trump and his alleged toupee – let’s not be mean spirited – Happy Christmas/Holidays to both of them – and also to all of you that have read this far and taken this article with the levity and good grace for which it was fully intended!
P.S. For those of you that may want to explore a little more about the Blockchain over the Holiday break, and really understand what the heck a Decentralised Autonomous Organisation and other outrageouly ridiculous acronyms and jargon and then why not check out my book – Down The Rabbit Hole, which is available on all major Kindle stores and is written in plain English (and a little humour thrown in for good measure!). Click here for further details.