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Ghjhero

Cryptocurrencies

93 posts in this topic

Bitcoin seems to have a problem in that transactions are trackable just by looking at the size and timing of each transaction and finding the  wallet that has a matching transaction. No decryption needed. Apparently criminals are abandoning bitcoin for just this reason now. 

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I don't see any reason large transactions should be anonymous.  Small transactions less than whatever it costs for personal use items (like emergency contraceptive pills, porn subscriptions, membership fees in religiously persecuted LBGTQ clubs etc) in order to protect privacy and avoid persecution is valid reason to use anonymous transactions.  Large transactions don't need privacy unless criminal, so why allow them?  The solution is to use two different cryptocoins, one privacy-protecting coin for everyday use, and one publicly-exposed coin for everything big -- or for things like purchasing bags of fertilizer that could be turned into bombs.

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17 hours ago, SpaceChampion said:

I don't see any reason large transactions should be anonymous.  Small transactions less than whatever it costs for personal use items (like emergency contraceptive pills, porn subscriptions, membership fees in religiously persecuted LBGTQ clubs etc) in order to protect privacy and avoid persecution is valid reason to use anonymous transactions.  Large transactions don't need privacy unless criminal, so why allow them?  The solution is to use two different cryptocoins, one privacy-protecting coin for everyday use, and one publicly-exposed coin for everything big -- or for things like purchasing bags of fertilizer that could be turned into bombs.

Why bother with two different coins when an individual could use the privacy coin all the time?

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4 hours ago, Ghjhero said:

Why bother with two different coins when an individual could use the privacy coin all the time?

Businesses, governments and NGOs need to make large transactions on occasion.  The public coin would discourage corruption and criminal activity.

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Dogecoin! 

Wow! 

Much blocks!

Very chain!

Market cap over 1000000000 $!

;)

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On 12/24/2017 at 2:12 AM, Loge said:

There's a nice story on Ars Technica. The Long Island Iced Tea Corporation has tripled it's share price over night by renaming itself Long Blockchain Corporation. Yes, markets are totally rational.

Saw this a few days ago, plus a write up about the CEO. They recently bought $4.2 million worth of hardware to mine cryptocurrencies from an "unnamed" vendor. Said vendor is getting a $2.9 million kickback as well as 260,000 shares of Long Blockchain stock.  The mining equipment will be installed in a data center in an "unnamed Nordic" country. 

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1 hour ago, Tywin et al. said:

The crypto markets do this. It goes up fast and goes down fast. If you're trading, you learn to read the charts and get out before the crashes. If you're investing, you find a technology you believe in, buy at a good entry point and hold. I'm up 5-6x my original investment since May. I've made a lot of mistakes but the markets are a lot more rational once you're watching it daily.

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I think I may have been too quick to say that block chain is a potentially great technology while crypto currency is nothing but a libertarian delusion, criminal enabler and speculative bubble. 

This article makes a good case that block chain isn’t even all that useful as a technology in the first place: Article from hackernoon

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37 minutes ago, Iskaral Pust said:

I think I may have been too quick to say that block chain is a potentially great technology while crypto currency is nothing but a libertarian delusion, criminal enabler and speculative bubble. 

This article makes a good case that block chain isn’t even all that useful as a technology in the first place: Article from hackernoon

Talk to me in 10 years (real 10 years, not 10 years from an anonymous white paper of brand new technology). Development is still in its infancy (~3 years) and buy in hasn't really occurred yet. I think it will. We get questions from major companies on it all the time and we keep finding use cases to develop a pilot. 

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How does the mining aspect of it work exactly? 

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5 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

How does the mining aspect of it work exactly? 

https://www.investopedia.com/tech/how-does-bitcoin-mining-work/

That being said, lots of blockchains are now moving to Proof of Stake algorithms that doesn't require the type of electricity that Bitcoin requires. I think there will be innovations in this space over the next few years too. The electricity issue is real.

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1 hour ago, Mexal said:

Talk to me in 10 years (real 10 years, not 10 years from an anonymous white paper of brand new technology). Development is still in its infancy (~3 years) and buy in hasn't really occurred yet. I think it will. We get questions from major companies on it all the time and we keep finding use cases to develop a pilot. 

I agree that the “ten years with no real adoption yet” is a red herring (just a provocative lead, I think) but he makes some decent points that the structure of block chain doesn’t necessarily improve on anything in the practical world; that transparency is inherently beneficial.  And technologically, distributed encryption with necessarily costly and slow transactions/interactions is well suited to a future era of highly distributed data, when computing power reaches a level that makes the transactions/interactions seamlessly fast, although without threatening the encryption. 

But none of the commonly touted applications —individually discussed in the article— are actually improved by block chain.  Currency transactions, smart contracts, secure data storage, etc are extremely unwieldy in block chain, might suffer from opacity (e.g. untraceable theft of bitcoin) and already have encryption security without needing to be distributed.  It may be an idea that needs to sit on the shelf until computing power makes it practical, not unlike the many ideas that had to wait for battery technology to improve.  It’s possible that even with faster computing, it still won’t be highly valuable until we enter an era where distributed storage is necessary for some reason.  Which is completely possible but not imminent. 

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17 hours ago, OldGimletEye said:

Anything where I wouldn't have the slightest clue how to price it, I'm not doing it.

An absolute minimum price would be the energy cost to create a bitcoin plus the energy cost of doing a transaction with it. This is where the idea of bitcoin has a fatal flaw. Consider gold mining where the price per ounce is the amount of soil one can process containing that ounce. The next ounce is roughly equal in cost. With bitcoin, finding one increases the cost of finding the next and so on. The price per transaction is then also increased each time.

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21 hours ago, Mexal said:

Talk to me in 10 years (real 10 years, not 10 years from an anonymous white paper of brand new technology). Development is still in its infancy (~3 years) and buy in hasn't really occurred yet. I think it will. We get questions from major companies on it all the time and we keep finding use cases to develop a pilot. 



I know absolutely nothing about this, beyond reading a few articles about blockchain and cryptokitties, but would I be crazy thinking that Bitcoin is likely to wind up somewhat analogical to a Myspace or Metacafe where it served as somewhat of a proof of concept for a certain kind of use of the internet which then got swallowed up by better-implemented, or at least more casually usable (though obviously sloppy implementation is going to be more inherently problematic for a cryptocurrency than for Facebook) rivals as the culture around it develops? That in a few years we're gonna be going 'hahaha remember bitcoin' as we all conduct our financial transactions via something else?

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Apologies for a long ramble ahead.

I've not invested any money, but I am totally fascinated by this new wave of blockchain tech chatter and cryptocurrency markets. I was in college during the .com boom and following crash. When plenty of people still had AOL and Compuserve, and Yahoo was the most common seach engine, a computer science buddy told me about a new search engine. I loved the name, as I was a math geek in high school and knew what a googol was. Anyway, that tiny idea became one of the strongest cornerstones of the online world - and if I'd had 1000 bucks to invest back in 1998, I'd be sitting quite pretty today. It survived the disastrous .com crash along with some little site that sold books (why bother when you can just get it at the mall? It's 10 minutes away!), a stupid popularity-contest website for college kids to Poke each other, and a site where I could buy silly arcane shit from a guy in Nevada and hope he ships the right thing.

A whole lot of these new cryptocurrencies are Ponzi schemes and going absolutely nowhere. In my opinion, Bitcoin itself will stick, and likely Ethereum as well. Once the tree shakes and the chaff falls away, a lot of people will lose a lot of money. But I steadfastly think that, as Mexal said, in 10 years some of these companies, or at least systems using blockchain technology, will be major parts of the online world. It's a lot of fun to read the white pages of these new startups promising revolutionary changes to whatever sector they are trying to adapt to. Trading of these altcoins is like the Wild West. A guy I know in Brooklyn works a day job for Spotify, but has made absolutely absurd percentages off his daily speculation of the market, which is fluctuating at completely insane levels. Coins shoot up 400% in hours, drop just as fast. It's bananas. Give it a few years, things will stabilize somewhat, and we'll see new players in the increasingly online world we're in.

Spoiler'd for length ramble about a specific startup, that will most likely go under like the rest, or could be one of those stalwarts, who the hell knows!

Spoiler

For instance, I am fascinated by the possibilities of using blockchain tech for unencumbered access to medical records. My dental records are strewn about in manila folders in multiple states. I literally have no idea of how to access records of an ER trip I took for a minor work injury a decade ago. My university health care stuff might still be puttering around back at Iowa State, my mom has the name of my childhood doctor somewhere, and I'm always sure to mention my allergy to penicillin, although I have no idea at what point we figured out I had that. One of the startups trying to change this, Medicalchain, wants to use blockchain tech to keep your medical information accessible, consistent, and secure, no matter where you go.

Their white page explaining the company trajectory looks really solid. On February 1st, their ICO will begin, and we'll see their tokens shoot up in value. They could then completely collapse within weeks or months, or in 10 years the name might be ubiquitous in the medical field, and I'll be wishing I put in some money instead of this over-long post.  (I should also point out that their initial token sale is not available for Americans, myself included, so I've no way to actually put money where my proverbial mouth is regardless) (second edit, I should also point out that the founder has started and dissolved several companies, and this could very well be a short-term Ponzi cash grab just like a high percentage of these startups)

 

Edited by Argonath Diver

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20 hours ago, polishgenius said:

I know absolutely nothing about this, beyond reading a few articles about blockchain and cryptokitties, but would I be crazy thinking that Bitcoin is likely to wind up somewhat analogical to a Myspace or Metacafe where it served as somewhat of a proof of concept for a certain kind of use of the internet which then got swallowed up by better-implemented, or at least more casually usable (though obviously sloppy implementation is going to be more inherently problematic for a cryptocurrency than for Facebook) rivals as the culture around it develops? That in a few years we're gonna be going 'hahaha remember bitcoin' as we all conduct our financial transactions via something else?

Possible. I have a hard time betting against Bitcoin because it's like a cockroach but in theory, that should be true. Bitcoin has a lot of issues that are being improved on by other coins.

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44 minutes ago, Mexal said:

Possible. I have a hard time betting against Bitcoin because it's like a cockroach but in theory, that should be true. Bitcoin has a lot of issues that are being improved on by other coins.

The issues with bitcoin are not easily solvable. The energy use for every transaction becomes an exponential curve. That is one major flaw. The second major flaw is the assumption that the encryption cannot be cracked. I t cannot be cracked by randomly checking hashes but remember the example of Enigma. In theory, that encryption was also uncrackable in theory, but Polish mathematicians had broken Enigma even before the start of the war and before Alan Turing had a go at it.

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1 hour ago, maarsen said:

The issues with bitcoin are not easily solvable. The energy use for every transaction becomes an exponential curve. That is one major flaw. The second major flaw is the assumption that the encryption cannot be cracked. I t cannot be cracked by randomly checking hashes but remember the example of Enigma. In theory, that encryption was also uncrackable in theory, but Polish mathematicians had broken Enigma even before the start of the war and before Alan Turing had a go at it.

Bitcoin itself does not use any encryption. Any flaw in the hash functions, would also effect online-banking, credit and debit cards. So any cryptographic weakness would most likely have consequences, dwarfing the possible insecurity of bitcoin.

As a small sidenote: The Enigma was never really considered to be uncrackable. German mathematicians knew very well how it could be attacked. This is bit of myth, caused by the immense difficulties the Allied forces had in decyphering Enigma encoded messages.

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