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1  Economy / Auctions / Selling Domain: VirtCoins.com on: August 23, 2015, 11:44:35 AM
Up for auction is the following domain name: VIRTCOINS.COM

The phrase VirtCoins can be interpreted as "virtual coins".

Start bidding at 0.05 BTC, thank you.
2  Alternate cryptocurrencies / Altcoin Discussion / Understanding Stealth Addresses/Payments on: June 10, 2015, 03:55:40 PM
I only recently learnt about "stealth payments", probably because I assumed it was the same as some other anon transaction mechanism with a similar name. All the anonymization mechanisms I've looked at in the past have some sort of disadvantage which turns me off using them in practice. However after doing some basic research on stealth payments it seems to me this is an absolutely ingenious mechanism without any major pitfalls.

It does force the receiver to scan for transactions to their stealth address but I think that's a fair price to pay for being able to receive anonymous transactions by sharing only a single stealth address. It doesn't bloat the blockchain with a huge amount of metadata and the method its self is extremely elegant, unlike other bulky mechanisms which are highly complicated and hard to understand. CoinDesk quoted Mike Hearn as saying "Stealth addresses let us have our cake and eat it."

To begin my research I simply googled "Stealth Addresses" and the top result was a StackExchange question with a nice answer:
Quote
What is a stealth address?

With a stealth address, you ask payers to generate a unique address in such a way that you (using some additional data which is attached to the transaction) can deduce the corresponding private key. So although you publish a single "stealth address" on your website, the block chain sees all your incoming payments as going to separate addresses and has no way to correlate them. (Of course, any individual payer knows their payment went to you, and can trace how you spend it, but they don't learn anything about other people's payments to you.)

My first impression was that this sounded like some sort of black magic and I had no idea how it could possibly work. I couldn't understand how the payer could generate a new address but only the payee could know the private key to that address, even though they played no role in the generation of the address. The CoinDesk article went a bit deeper into the mathematics involved but it's written very poorly and is full of mistakes.

However after reading a few more articles on the subject of stealth payments I now understand how it works in theory, for the most part anyway. The purpose of this thread was not only to explain how it works, but to clear up some of my confusion on the things I still don't fully understand. First of all, it seems to me that the stealth address is really just the full public key encoded into some higher base (58 I assume) to make it shorter.

When someone wants to make a payment to that stealth address they will decode the stealth address back into the full public key and then use it to generate the actual address they will be sending the payment to (I'll call this "address X" from now on). But in order to generate address X the payer also needs to generate their own key pair, although I see no reason they couldn't use a key pair they previously generated and used for something else.

The payer can generate a shared secret (S) by using their own private key (e) and the public key (Q) derived from the original stealth address. The exact equation is S=eQ. This is the first thing about stealth payments which seems rather amazing to me because it implies that if I take any two key pairs, and then swap the public keys, then multiply the public key by the private key in each pair, the result should be the same for both key pairs.

Obviously I'm not an expert on ECC math but I didn't know that was possible. Technically the shared secret seems to be a sha256 hash of eQ but we don't really need to worry about that detail to understand it. Then finally, the payer will add Q to the shared secret (aka Q+S) in order to generate the public key for address X. So the payer has no idea what the private key for address X is, but the payee can calculate it by using the equation d+S where d is the private key for Q.

This is the second bit of math which seems rather amazing to me. If the public key for address X is equal to Q+S and the private key is equal to d+S, that implies I can take any key pair, then increase both the public and private keys by the same amount, and I will still have a perfectly valid key pair. Really the shared secret is just the incremental value which both parties can agree upon without anyone else knowing the value of the secret.

To put it in the simplest possible terms, the payer will increment the public key derived from the stealth address to produce address X. The payee will be scanning the blockchain looking for transactions sent to their stealth address (see this diagram to understand how that works). Then after receiving the transaction the payee will increment their private key using the same shared secret the payer used.

This allows the payee to produce a private key which is valid for address X. The original key pair used for the stealth address is essentially acting as a seed for all the real addresses which the coins get sent to. One of things about this whole process which still isn't clear to me is exactly what is the metadata? I assume it must just be the public key the payer used to generate the shared secret, but it seems like I might be wrong about that.

The reason I'm asking is because I think this could be the perfect anonymization mechanism for Cryptonite and other mini-blockchain coins because the metadata could be stored in the tx message field if it's not too large. Since there can only be one message field in each transaction it would obviously restrict the number of stealth payments to one per transaction but that seems like a very reasonable compromise to me.

EDIT: fixed some mistakes.
3  Alternate cryptocurrencies / Altcoin Discussion / [closed] Cryptonite name change poll on: September 01, 2014, 06:37:06 AM
Voting closed, see this post: https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=764976.msg8633932#msg8633932

Ok I want to settle this Cryptonite naming issue once and for all and I think the only way to do that is by letting people vote on it. Apparently some people think the name Cryptonite is too similar to the name Cryptonote, which is the technology behind a family of altcoins like Bytecoin and Monero. There is also a PoW algorithm called CryptoNight typically used by Cryptonote coins. Cryptonite has no relation to any of these technologies and some people think the name should be changed to avoid confusion.

Personally I am very reluctant to change the name because Cryptonote and CryptoNight are only names for technologies and algorithms, there isn't actually any altcoin with a name which sounds like Cryptonite. I also don't want to go to all the effort of changing the name if the new name isn't something original and unlikely to increase confusion instead of dampening it. I also quite like the logo and branding we have now, a reasonable amount of time and money was spent on it, but I don't think this debate will end until we vote on it.

New name voting options:

1) Cryptonite (keep same name)
2) Minicoin (base on mini-blockchain scheme)
3) Crypton (simply remove the 'ite')
4) Other

Voting will be done by posting in this thread, just post which option you want to vote for. If you choose option 4 please specify the name you want. To prevent spam votes you must have registered more than a month ago and have at least 100 posts in order to vote. Voting will last for 5 days 48 hours and then I'll add up all the numbers. I reserve the right to cancel the name change if I don't like the result.

Some things to keep in mind: Minicoin is a good descriptive name but it was also the name of an old altcoin which now seems to be dead, but remnants of it remain on the internet and at the top of Google search results. Clipcoin is a decent choice because it is compatible with the existing currency code (XCN) and hasn't been used before, but I personally don't think Clipcoin is a very professional name at all.
4  Alternate cryptocurrencies / Altcoin Discussion / Using the mini-blockchain for decentralized DNS and encrypted internet layer on: August 19, 2014, 12:06:48 PM
I'm just creating this thread to briefly document some ideas I had about creating an efficient decentralized DNS system and encrypted internet layer on top of it. It's been known for some time that the mini-blockchain scheme is an ideal system for implementing a decentralized DNS database, because of the way balances are stored in the "account tree". Cryptonite, the first mini-blockchain implementation, has "withdrawal limits" which can be set by the owner of an address. Both the balance and the withdrawal limit of all non-empty addresses are stored in the account tree. To update the withdrawal limit, the address owner will create a special transaction which modifies the withdrawal limit value stored in the account tree. It is easy to see how the account tree can be adapted to store and update IP addresses instead of withdrawal limit values, and it would be much more scalable than a system like Namecoin.

Now I'm not very familiar with the way Namecoin works, and the rest of my post may be reinventing the wheel, but I have some interesting ideas for how to achieve perfectly secure communication between client and server without any centralized certificate authority, and how static files like images can be distributed among peers in a simple and efficient manner which allows for fast website load times and could even reward the nodes who distribute such files. So the first step, as mentioned earlier, is to map domain names to IP addresses using the account tree. If we actually use the public key hashes (aka addresses) as the domain names, then it's possible to use public key cryptography for encrypted communication between clients and servers. We could also add another field to each account in the account tree which maps the public key to a human readable domain to make it user friendly.

Steps for establishing secure communication channel with a server:

1) client uses account tree to lookup IP of a domain
2) client sends hello message containing own public key to server
3) server signs the clients public key and sends it back
4) client reconstructs full public key of server from signed message and:
  a) ensures the public key hash matches value in account tree
  b) ensures the response is signed by that public key
  c) ensures contents of response is their own public key

Now both the client and the server have each others public keys and they can communicate securely, and the client knows it's talking with the correct server because only that server can sign messages with the public key listed in the account tree. Now personally I think this approach is far superior to onion routing, because it allows direct connections to remote servers, you don't need to go through any type of peer circuit or exit nodes which can see what you are doing. And it's completely encrypted end to end, so even your own ISP cannot see what you are requesting from any given server. However they can see with what servers you are communicating, and that may pose a problem for websites wishing to avoid censorship. I think this problem can be best solved by decentralizing the static content among peers, so that the server only needs to hold scripts and databases (eg user database).

My first thoughts on this issue were to work on top of a system like storj, but we really need our web content to be delivered at the fastest speeds possible, and I don't think a system like storj can do that because you need to do tedious blockchain lookups to locate files on the network (correct me if I'm wrong). A much simpler, and faster solution, is this: the client wants a file, so it makes a request to the server, the server has a list of IP's for nodes which it believes are in possession of the files. The first time a new file becomes available, the server may allow peers to download the file directly until it is well enough seeded, but a more secure method would be to anonymously upload the file some where and redirect clients that place. For example some HTML code supplied by the server may look like this: <img src="p2presource:108f07b8382412612c048d07d13f814118445acd" />

The p2presource part indicates we have a distributed file stored by peers, and after ":" is the file hash obviously. To acquire the image in this case, the client would send a request to the server for that resource just as they normally would, and the server may directly serve the file to the client, or it may point to another peer it thinks has the file, or it may redirect to else where, for example an image located on the normal internet. If we wanted to make it even more robust we could allow the server to respond with torrent hashes and then locate the file using DHT and seamlessly download it in the background, however this would only be necessary until enough nodes had the file. Nodes willing to redistribute the file could inform the server of their intentions, and the server will redirect clients to those nodes when ever it receives a request for a file those nodes claimed to have.

Once again this approach should be quite fast, since the files can be downloaded directly from peers, but there isn't any incentive for anyone to redistribute files, but before I get to explaining how that might work, I want to briefly discuss the anonymity implications of the distributed file system I just described. Since the client and server will be communicating securely, it's not possible to eavesdrop and learn what files were requested by the client, but if the client is pointed to other nodes who have the file, when the client makes a request to those nodes it will be in clear text unless we establish some sort of encryption protocol. Now since the client doesn't care about what peers have the file, it doesn't need to validate the identity of peers like it does when it first connects to the main server, all it cares about is getting the correct file with the hash specified by the server, like so:

1) client sends hello message containing own public key to peer
2) peer responds with its own public key, encrypted with client pubkey
3) client verifies response by decrypting message with its private key
4) client sends hash of needed file to peer (encrypted with peer pubkey)
5) peer decrypts hash and sends back requested file (encrypted with clients pubkey)
6) client decrypts file and verifies that the unencrypted file hash is correct

What we basically have now is a system where only the server and/or redistribution peers know what files the client has requested. As mentioned earlier though, there is still no incentive for nodes to share files, what we need is some type of reward system for redistributing files. This should be quite easy since the system I've described is already built on top of the mini-blockchain scheme, a cryptocurrency scheme which is particularly good at handling micro-transactions, which is very helpful in solving this problem. Now I must admit I haven't really thought about the fine details of how this could work, which is why I left it for the end, but basically I imagine a reward system working via some sort of micro-transaction approach where the file is downloaded in small pieces. Or alternatively, another good approach may be to have the server some how pay nodes who redistribute their files.

The interesting thing about this overall system is that domains can have a coin balance associated with them, since the domains are addresses, or they map to addresses. So if servers pay nodes who redistribute their files, then it's much like paying for normal server bandwidth, and if the balance of the server address reaches 0 it will be removed from the account tree, meaning it will be removed from the DNS database. However I don't think we need a protocol for forcing servers to pay nodes who redistribute their files, because if a server stops paying fairly people will simply stop sharing their files and look else where for a better profit. The main issue with this approach however is that nodes must be able to prove they are sharing the files, and we can't use recent innovations related to proof-of-storage because holding the files on disk is simply not enough, they must be shared.

Anyway I wanted to keep this post brief, so I'll leave it there and await some thoughts and feedback on what I have presented so far. Hopefully I have presented some original ideas, and hopefully some of you guys will have some interesting expansions and modifications of these ideas, especially in relation to the reward system for redistribution nodes, because I haven't really done much thinking on that topic. I wont be able to work on implementing any of these ideas since I am already focused on Cryptonite right now, I'm mainly just posting this because a few people on the Cryptonite IRC were interested in it and I thought it was worth sharing. But I do think this system could work very well and I highly encourage any interested parties to give it a shot, I will help however I can. A fast and secure decentralized internet layer would be extremely popular and it's something we really need in my opinion.
5  Alternate cryptocurrencies / Altcoin Discussion / Cryptonite bounty thread - ideas and donations for important projects on: August 12, 2014, 02:51:25 PM
Cryptonite has made good progress in the last few weeks since launch, but we are still lacking some vital components required to enable a thriving and fair economy around Cryptonite. Hence, I am starting this thread to help organize the funding for important project bounties related to Cryptonite. It takes money to get things done quickly, and unfortunately we don't have the time or money required to develop and fund all of these projects ourselves, so we must seek help from the community.

You can help fund the development of new services and tools for Cryptonite by donating to any of the addresses listed below. If you do make a contribution, I highly recommend that you make a post in this thread specifying how much you donated and what type of project you would like to fund. If a similar project bounty does not already exist we will create a new one for you. We will try to be as transparent as possible in how we use these funds but we can't give refunds after a bounty has been paid out.

Bounties

Open source pool software with Cryptonite support: 0.134 BTC raised

Open source GPU miner for AMD cards with M7 support: 0.034 BTC raised

Donate

XCN: CHWnXQ9icLVoVKxgw49riHo6EwLC1fCR64
BTC: 13dnPQ5VMwkju81wd1Zu8c6uHFiFJazegz
6  Alternate cryptocurrencies / Announcements (Altcoins) / [ANN][XCN] Cryptonite | 1st mini-blockchain coin | M7 PoW | No Premine on: July 28, 2014, 01:01:55 AM



Introduction

Cryptonite (also known as Crypton) is the first crypto-currency to implement the mini-blockchain scheme along with many other innovative features. Our goal was to create a truly scalable cryptocurrency which combined many of the best ideas developed within the alt-coin community and some of our own innovative ideas. The basic philosophy of Cryptonite is to follow the ideals set by Bitcoin as closely as possible but improve upon everything that could be improved.

Cryptonite was developed by the Mini-blockchain Project over a period of almost four months. Cryptonite is a fork of the Bitcoin core but the code has been extensively modified and expanded upon. It seems that the altcoin community is experiencing a torrential flood of clone-coins right now and it is not our goal to add to that pile of useless altcoins. Our goal was to create something truly new, innovative, and useful to the cryptocurrency community.

The altcoin community should be about innovation, not a select few people making a quick buck. Our goal was to break out of that greed driven trend. Cryptonite had no pre-mine, no IPO, the difficulty adjustment algorithm is designed to adapt quickly and prevent instamines, the coins are distributed fairly over a long period of time (half mined after 10 years), we did over a month of public beta testing before release along with a week early pre-announcement.

Brief Overview

Mini-Blockchain

Cryptonite is the first implementation of the light weight mini-blockchain scheme. Nodes will never again spend days synchronizing with the network and the average user will not have to fear becoming a full node. This is possible because of our decentralized balance sheet approach.

Innovative Ideas

Cryptonite combines many great ideas developed by the altcoin community and also includes several novel features not seen in another cryptocurrency until now. Two innovative features which help improve security and trust are unmalleable transactions and withdrawal limits.

Smart Adaptation

Cryptonite achieves smart coin distribution by adjusting the difficulty and the block reward every block, adapting quickly to changes and providing smoother transitions. The dynamic max block size mechanism ensures that the transaction capacity of the network naturally grows over time.

Future Proofed

Cryptonite has an unparalleled potential for scalability and transaction capacity. The total coin supply has a full 64 bits of granularity, the nonce and the timestamp have also been increased to 64 bits. The M7 PoW algorithm uses multiple cryptographically secure hashing algorithms.

Micro-Transactions

Cryptonite has superior support for micro-transactions because we don't have to worry about keeping any so called "dust" in the blockchain forever. Since blockchain bloat is not a problem, blocks can be larger and we can encourage the use of custom transaction messages.

Multi-Sig Support

Cryptonite has full native support for multi-signature transactions, which require multiple parties to sign a transaction with different keys before it is considered valid. Multi-sig transactions are useful in many real world situations, especially for consumer protection and escrow schemes.

Specifications

- Block time: 1 per minute
- Block reward: changes every block (half life of 10 years)
- Max block size: changes every block (100 block average * 2)
- Difficulty adjustment: changes every block (1000 block filter)
- Coin supply: 2^64-1 units (1.84 billion coins, 10 dec places)
- Mining algorithm: M7 PoW
- Coin Maturity: instant
- Pre-mine: none

Usage

See the wiki for information on the Cryptonite API:
http://cryptonite.info/wiki/index.php?title=Cryptonite_API

Use the setgenerate command or one of these miners:

Standalone CPU Miner
Cuda GPU Miner

Check here for pre-compiled cuda miner binaries for Win64:
dropbox.com/sh/56lnq52g4gny0m0/AADMJa2QTMSSc4g9gx1BfWIla

Check here for djm34's ccminer Windows binaries:
cudaMiner & ccMiner CUDA based mining applications

Check here for the Claymore AMD GPU Miner:
Claymore Cryptonite (XCN) GPU Miner

FAQ/Troubleshooting

See this very informative post written by watuba.

Also see this page: www.cryptonite.info/?page=faq

Community

IRC: #cryptonite on freenode
Twitter: https://twitter.com/CryptoniteCoin
Reddit: https://www.reddit.com/r/Cryptonite
Wiki: http://cryptonite.info/wiki/
Code: https://github.com/MiniblockchainProject/

Services

Exchanges

Bter: www.bter.com
btc38: www.btc38.com
C-CEX: www.c-cex.com
Poloniex: www.poloniex.com
BX: www.bx.in.th

Pools

1GH XCN Pool: xcn.1gh.com
TheBlocksFactory: xcn.theblocksfactory.com
Nonce-Pool: xcn.nonce-pool.com
Suprnova Pool: xcn.suprnova.cc

Block Explorers

Official Explorer: explorer.cryptonite.info

Free XCN

XCN Faucet: xcnfaucet.com

Merchants

Bitcoinshop: bitscoinshop.com.br (instructions)

Media

letstalkbitcoin.com: Beyond Bitcoin Ep 18: Cryptonite
CoinsSource.com: Interview With The Founder of Cryptonite
Cryptonite: The First Mini-Blockchain, Withdrawal Limiting & More

More Detail

Mini-blockchain Scheme

Cryptonite is the first implementation of the mini-blockchain scheme, a scheme designed for maximum scalability, achieved by addressing the problem of blockchain bloat and providing a solution which allows all old transactions to be forgotten by the network after they become old enough. This allows new nodes to synchronize with the network extremely quickly and allows existing nodes to free up disk space by deleting old transactions. As a result of this scheme the network doesn't need to become increasingly centralized only by nodes capable of handling the full blockchain, so mining can remain more decentralized.

Micro-transactions & Messages

Thanks to the mini-blockchain scheme Cryptonite has superior support for micro-transactions and custom transaction messages attached to transactions. In Bitcoin and other altcoins where the full blockchain is required to synchronize with the network, small value transactions and transaction messages tend to be discouraged because they cause "blockchain bloat". The scalable nature of the mini-blockchain scheme relieves us from the concern of blockchain bloat and we can have full support for transaction messages and micro-transactions because nodes don't need to store transactions forever.

Withdrawal Limits

Cryptonite is the first altcoin to feature withdrawal limits, allowing users to set a limit on how many coins they can send from an address in one block. This is useful because it helps to prevent double spending and increases confidence in low-confirmation transactions. If a merchant can see that the withdrawal limit on an address prevents it from being emptied in a small number of blocks they can have much more confidence in any transactions sent to them from that address, even without any confirmations at all. So the main advantage of withdrawal limits is that 0-confirmation transactions become safer in the right conditions.

Unmalleable Transactions

If the claims of Mt. Gox and other businesses are to be believed, transaction malleability has caused quite a bit of damage to the Bitcoin economy. Of course even if that's the true reason why Mt. Gox went out of business, it's still their fault for not understanding transaction malleability when it was well known about for a long time. Cryptonite is the first altcoin to feature unmalleable transactions, in order to avoid any repeat of such undesirable events and allow the transaction ID's to be reliable. This is achieved by having the sender sign the txid and by ensuring the txid will always change when the contents of the transaction changes.

Donations

Development / Marketing Donations:

XCN: CcFE7EWRuBVe4FrJoVJyEeW5GvZZ4spNqN
BTC: 15XvdRtPpon1wxx4SeNbR4WZtU5mdE8A5S


Important Info

There is a bug in the Qt wallet which can cause the sync process to get stuck at 7 days behind. When the sync process becomes stuck at 7 days behind the wallet.dat file may become corrupted upon shutting down Qt. In some cases the corrupted wallet file will be recoverable but in other cases it may not be. It is highly recommended to make a backup of your private keys or your entire wallet file if you own any XCN. If you experience the "7 day bug" you will probably have to delete everything in your data directory except your wallet.dat file (restore backup if corrupted) and then do a fresh sync.
7  Alternate cryptocurrencies / Announcements (Altcoins) / [PRE-ANN][XCN] Cryptonite | 1st mini-blockchain coin | M7 PoW | No Premine on: July 21, 2014, 01:22:04 PM


THIS THREAD IS THE OLD PRE-ANNOUNCEMENT. PLEASE SEE ACTUAL ANNOUNCEMENT THREAD:

[ANN][XCN] Cryptonite | 1st mini-blockchain coin | M7 PoW | No Premine
8  Alternate cryptocurrencies / Altcoin Discussion / [TEST RELEASE] Cryptonite binary for linux (NEW: Qt and Windows builds) on: June 07, 2014, 10:33:09 PM
WARNING: this is a test release, it runs in testnet mode, do not place any value on the coins because you will lose them!

It has been over a year since I first proposed the mini-blockchain scheme, and a few months ago I finally found some developers capable of building it. In a very small amount of time an incredible amount of work has been done. We started with the Bitcoin code base and so far we have altered tens of thousands of lines of code, and lots still needs to be done. But at last we have reached the point where we can release some binaries for testing to help us weed out some of the bugs and figure out what needs to be done next. We need all the testers we can get and we appreciate your help during this testing phase.

First it should be mentioned that the binaries will only work on 64bit systems right now, we plan to add 32bit support in the future and we also have a binary for Windows systems which will be released at a future point for testing (the Windows binaries have now been released, see the link below for a list of available binaries). We encourage you to test out all the features and try to break the system, if you do find any bugs could you please report them in this thread along with as much detail about the problem as you're able to provide (we may also request log files in some cases).

The binary can be downloaded from here:
http://gpile.it/cryptonite/

The dependencies are the same as Bitcoin with one extra requirement: libgmp-dev

You must start cryptonited in testnet mode using the following command:

./cryptonited -testnet

All API commands should include -testnet flag or they wont work.

See the wiki for more info: Cryptonite API

Here is a message from our lead developer which contains more details about this release:
Quote
Cryptonite is significantly different from bitcoin and it's
derivatives. Large swaths of code have been changed and entire
algorithms rethought. In a way this puts us kind of back in the stone
age. Much like the early days of bitcoin, the security and reliability
of Cryptonite is questionable regardless of it's theoretical
underpinnings. As coins are now generally expected to work without
problems at the time of launch, we must find a way to test this
codebase to the requisite level. We propose vast testing on the
testnet, and that's where you come in.

Keep in mind that while we encourage you to make use of the testnet
network and all it's capabilities. It is possible, and in fact likely
that we will completely reset the blockchain periodically as changes
become necessary. Slated changes to the client will make it difficult
to maintain wallets across certain versions as well. Cryptonite is not
complete. While it is currently believed that no changes will need to
be made to the blockchain, this is far from certain as huge sections
of code have not been implemented. Bugs are also likely, some may
cause crashes, others may force us to reset the chain. No effort will
be made to maintain the testnet chain via forks.

After all that down talk, you might wonder why we need testers at this
point. The answer is that much code has actually been written and many
things have changed. The program in it's current state, and the
program with all future changes should remain functionally identical
from the users perspective, plus a few minor features. Testing will
give an opportunity for users and service providers to interact with
the new model and provide testing and feedback. As an example of the
kind of changes in thinking, Cryptonite does not support scripts, and
does not require change when sending transactions. Cryptonite also
does not necessarily know the origin of coins. Common utilities such a
blockchain explorer may be practically impossible. Changes like these
could have a profound impact on the way people use the program.

The current binary release is made available only for x86-64 linux.
The binary should run on all debian derivatives such as ubuntu/mint
etc.

~Catia
9  Alternate cryptocurrencies / Marketplace (Altcoins) / [CLOSED] Need logo for innovative new coin (0.15 BTC reward) on: June 06, 2014, 09:47:47 PM
Hi guys, I need a logo for a new altcoin which will be called "Cryptonite". I don't want to ramble on with all the technical details of the coin right now but I will say it's going to the be the first implementation of my mini-blockchain scheme, so it's not going to be another cheap rip off of Bitcoin, we have altered tens of thousands of lines of code so far. So I don't want some cheap dodgy logo, what we are building deserves an original and creative logo. Post your submissions in this thread and I'll pick the best one after about a week or so (there will be no voting). The winner will also have their name permanently embedded into the project credits, in the GUI and on the website, if they want that. Thanks and good luck.

PS- if someone posts a logo that I really like I'll instantly accept it and pay out the reward.
10  Other / Off-topic / Malicious Firefox Installer - Google & Anti-Virus Companies Non-responsive on: February 24, 2014, 06:48:21 AM
I was just working with a client and I instructed them to download Firefox because Internet Explorer was giving them problems. They did a Google search for "Firefox" and clicked on the first result without realizing that it was a paid advertisement. Consequently, a bunch of malicious software was installed onto their system, including those fake virus scanners which warn the user that they have hundreds of infections and that they must purchase the product to have them removed. The client had AVG installed so I told them to do a scan but it found nothing. So I started to look around for some more information about the malicious website (www.ez-download.com).

Besides this Mozilla bug report which is now a year old, one of the only articles I could find about this malicious website was a blog post on webroot:

Quote
Our sensors continue detecting rogue ads that expose users to bogus propositions in an attempt to install privacy-invading Potentially Unwanted Applications (PUAs) on their PCs. The most recent campaign consists of a successful brand-jacking abuse of Mozilla’s Firefox browser, supposedly offered for free, while in reality, the rogue download manager entices users into installing multiple rogue toolbars, most commonly known as InstallCore.

More details:

Sample screenshot of the landing page:


Rogue download URL:
hxxp://www.ez-download.com/mozilla-firefox

Based on what my client described to me I would say that "potentially unwanted" is a vast understatement. So I tried visiting the website myself and my WOT plugin gave me a warning that the website had a very bad rating. I took a look at the WOT user reviews and nearly every one of them were saying that the website gave them a virus/trojan. I also noticed that some of the reviews were posted near the very start of 2013, over 1 year ago. So I started to wonder how this site was still at the top of the Google search results for "firefox". Here is a screenshot I took showing the malicious website at the top (the little green and red circles are part of the WOT addon for Firefox):



So I did some more searching and to my surprise I found that WOT was essentially the only website which recognized the malicious nature of ez-download.com. This TrustPilot review page gives the website a rating of 9.2/10. Even this Norton Safe Web Report for ez-download.com lists 0 detected threats and gives it a big green "OK" and says it is "safe". One Norton user posted the following comment nearly a month ago:

"Norton Says Safe? They had a pretty nasty virus on their Foxfire download so I don't understand how Norton can consider this site safe. I will never use their site again. It was the sort of thing that should not have passed even basic scans."

Indeed, so how did it pass their scan and why has this website been freely operating for over a year now as we can clearly see by the Mozilla bug report and the WOT reviews? I started searching for a solution to the problem so that I could help my client remove the infections from their computer. There was nearly nothing written on this topic but I did find a Yahoo answer page related to this issue:

Quote
What can I do about the damage this site ( mozilla-firefox.ez-download.com ) caused to my computer?

I tell you do-not-download-this. I had Mozilla Firefox installed from this site and my entire computer crashed... The system is designed to have you blackmailed in order to save your computer from the damage they cause you. I had to buy a new computer.

BEST ANSWER:

There is nothing to be done unfortunately. In-fact the US government is sanctioning the use of new malware to be developed as a deterrent for downloading copyrighted material. (another confirmation politicians are in the pocket of big business and don't even bother hiding it).

Report website to virustotal.com. It may help others to avoid it in the future.

I would have dismissed this answer as a paranoid fantasy if not for what I had already learnt about this website. So based on his answer I took a look on virustotal.com to see if anyone submitted this malicious website to them. I found the virustotal scan report for ez-download.com and to my amazement only 2 out of the 53 scanners said the site was malicious (WOT and Dr.Web), the other 51 reported that the site was "clean". As I was looking through the Mozilla bug report and the WOT reviews and some of the other articles I have linked to in this post, I also came across some other virustotal links where people had submitted the Fake Firefox installer for scanning, such as these four:

Antivirus scan for firefox_setup.exe (1 year ago) - 2/46
Antivirus scan for Firefox_Setup_21.0.exe (8 months ago) - 4/46
Antivirus scan for Firefox_Setup.exe (3 months ago) - 1/46
Antivirus scan for firefox_downloader.exe (4 days ago) - 6/46

The one from 4 days ago is a scan of the installer which you can download from ez-download.com right now. At least the anti-virus software seems to be getting a little bit better with 6 out of 46 positive detection results, but that is still absolutely pathetic imo. It was missed by so many of the "top line" scanners including the ones made by Symantec, TrendMicro, Panda, McAfee, Microsoft, Kaspersky, F-Secure, Comodo, BitDefender, Avast, AVG, Ad-Aware, and the list goes on. All of them have consistently been unable to detect these fake Firefox installers, even though this malicious website has been disseminating them for over a year now. And even with such a long history of malicous activities, now Google has placed them at the top of the search results for the simple search phrase "firefox". Just what in the hell is going on here? I submitted a report to Google but so have many other people before me and they still haven't done anything about it. This is absolutely unbelievable...
11  Economy / Digital goods / removed on: February 22, 2014, 10:52:53 AM
removed
12  Bitcoin / Development & Technical Discussion / [VIDEO] Brief Overview of the Mini-Blockchain Scheme on: February 20, 2014, 12:05:17 PM
I'm always receiving messages from people who have trouble properly understanding my mini-blockchain scheme so I thought it would be a good idea to make a video which could provide a brief description and explanation of the mini-blockchain scheme and the advantages it offers. I would recommend reading through the mini-blockchain wiki for the full technical details but hopefully this video will help out a few people who can't be bothered reading through the wiki. Make sure you have annotations enabled because there are a few important notes that I forgot to mention in the video.

Link:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gQsIEXZYQMQ
13  Bitcoin / Project Development / Business Idea (advice needed) on: January 20, 2014, 06:58:33 PM
So the other day I was looking around the internet for a certain type of product but there was really nothing to meet my requirements. It was clear however that a lot of people besides myself were looking for the same type of product based on the comments I was reading around the internet. I don't want to mention exactly what type of product I'm talking about in case someone decides to get in before me, but what I can say is that it's a very common type of product which most people use and it comes in many different variations (except the variation I was looking for). I know for a fact there would be a huge market for this product and that it would quickly become one of the most popular variants available. It would be the type of thing that if you put it on kickstarter you'd get an uncontrollable inflow of funding (not that I would really need to use kickstarter) and when the product became available it would quickly sell out (and I don't at all feel like I'm exaggerating how popular it would be).

However, it would require a professional 3D modeling artist to first design the product and then it would require a large manufacturing factory to mass produce the product. The problem is that I really don't have any type of experience with starting a large manufacturing business, I've only ever managed my own small business as a website programmer and I don't have any employees. So I really wouldn't know where to start or what would be the safest way of going about it. I guess what I'm saying is that I need some business partners with some good business experience and I need some 3D design artists to help produce the first line of products. The other problem is that I live in Australia, and even worse is that I live in a rather rural area of Australia where I'm cut off from a lot of large businesses and manufacturers. But I really feel like this is a good idea and that it can be extremely successful if it done right so I want to give it a shot in the true entrepreneurial spirit.

If you have any advice for me or feel like you could some how contribute to the business plan then post in this thread or send me a PM. Thanks.
14  Bitcoin / Project Development / Graphic Designer Needed [closed] on: January 15, 2014, 09:13:25 AM
I require a graphic designer who is willing to accept odd jobs from me on occasion (mostly logo work). I am a website programmer but I'm not very great at graphic design and I would rather outsource the work to someone who knows what they are doing. I would prefer someone from Australia but it doesn't really matter where you live as long as you speak good english. If you are interested send me a PM with some examples of your previous work. I have a job ready to go right now. All payments will be made via PayPal and in some cases Bitcoin if I happen to have enough spare BTC available.

A graphic designer has been chosen.
15  Bitcoin / Project Development / Artificial Neural Network & Genetic Algorithm Library For Deja Vu on: January 14, 2014, 04:28:30 PM
This is something I coded more than a year ago when I was attempting to build high performance trading bots. It is designed to be an extension for my Deja Vu scripting application. I was going to keep it to myself but I realized it takes a hell of a lot of computing power to evolve an ANN capable of profitable trading and I was never really able to get a safe and profitable trading bot out of it. I figured I may as well release it for other people to try their luck with it. It's written in PascalScript which probably makes it slower than just about any other ANN software out there (probably why I could never generate a useful ANN). But to be honest I've never really used any other ANN software so I wouldn't really know how fast it is compared to other ANN software. I learnt basically everything I know about ANN's from Jeff Heaton's awesome lecture series titled Neural Network Fundamentals and Neural Network Calculations.

The design I implemented was a simple recurrent neural network type of ANN with the ability to attach context neurons to any other neuron. It's basically just a feed forward network with the addition of context neurons which can remember previous outputs of any given neuron (each context neuron feeds back to only one neuron instead of the whole layer) and you can also control the number of cycles for which the context neuron will remember the data before replacing it with new output data. Of course it can generate entirely random networks and serialize the network into its corresponding weight and DNA strings which can easily be stored in text files. It also contains all the functionality required to breed nets and evolve nets in an automated fashion given some training data. The download package contains some historical price data formatted in the necessary way.

The functions which test and evaluate the performance of each net can be found in the Includes/ANN/test.pas file. I tried many different methods for evaluating the trading efficiency of each net but none of them really worked very well. The method employed in the test.pas file which comes with this library tries to simulate real trading and then measure how much profit was made, but it's quite a difficult thing to do correctly given only historical price data and I am far from a trading expert (hence why I wanted to build ANN's which would trade for me). The library will work as it is but I suggest you try modifying the evaluation functions yourself and see what works best. When you run the training script (scripts/ANN/evolve_nets.pas) you will see the scores of each net in the debug box at the bottom (anything above 1 means a profit was made). If anyone has any other questions about the library feel free to ask.
16  Alternate cryptocurrencies / Marketplace (Altcoins) / [CLOSED] $20,000 Mini-Blockchain Implementation on: December 15, 2013, 02:33:09 AM
This bounty is now closed as per the last update. If you have any questions please send me a PM.
17  Bitcoin / Project Development / Procedural Hash-Based Encryption & Compression on: November 19, 2013, 05:47:29 AM
Wasn't exactly sure where to post this thread, move if necessary. This is an idea I got a few days ago when I was watching a video about a game called FUEL. It has the largest game world of any console game ever made, and it fits on a regular DVD disk. The way it achieves this is by procedurally generating the world on the fly, meaning a relatively small algorithm is capable of generating a complex landscape.

After thinking about this problem for a short while I realized that hashing algorithms provide a good way of generating a large complex data set from a small seed. A large hex string can be generated from a small seed by hashing it over and over again and joining all the hashes together. The trick is finding a seed which generates a hex string which corresponds to the hex string you are trying to compress, which of course is not feasible.

However you can generate a set of instructions which describe how to grow the seed and where to find the hex code that you need within the seemingly random hashes, to reconstruct the original file from those instructions. After writing some code and experimenting with this a bit I found that it is possible, however it takes a huge amount of computing power just to compress even a small file with a reasonable degree of compression.

It is fairly quick to decompress the file but the time required for reasonable compression is far too long. It could be useful for someone who needs as much compression as possible and they have the computing power to spare. Like a company that wants to release a popular digital file which they know will cost a lot of bandwidth, but other than that it seems fairly useless as a compression technique.

However it does seem to make an extremely robust encryption mechanism because without the seed, the instructions mean absolutely nothing. The resulting encrypted file doesn't even contain an encrypted version of the original data, it only contains instructions for how to rebuild the file from random hex generated by the seed, but without the seed those instructions are meaningless.

The only downside of this encryption technique is that the resulting file will be larger than the original. This is because in order to make the encryption process fast enough, we must spend less time making our instructions as compact as possible (meaning we must spend less time hashing stuff), so the instructions used to rebuild the file turn out to be larger than the original file.

At first the file size was doubling in order to get a reasonable level of speed, but I spent some time tweaking it and got the output size down to about 1.5x the original size instead of 2x the original size, while maintaining the same level of speed. It's still fairly slow compared to other encryption algorithms, but the decryption process is still much quicker than the encryption process, as it was with the compression algorithm.

I used sha256 in my implementation and I know that is a highly robust hashing algorithm and it has a huge key space, so I'm fairly certain that without the seed, an attacker would have absolutely no hope of decrypting a file encrypted with this method, and that is why I'm unable to provide the source code for this algorithm until I can be sure about the laws regarding encryption algorithms, because I know they are tough.

I posted this thread just to get some feedback and thoughts on the idea and maybe learn if something similar to this already exists. It reminds me a bit of the way bitcoin gets work done through hashing. A crypto-coin where people can submit files for compression and miners get paid to solve these types of difficult compression problems would be interesting, and if the whole network is working on such problems it becomes feasible.
18  Bitcoin / Project Development / [BOUNTY] Mini-Blockchain Implementation on: September 02, 2013, 05:38:27 PM
Discussion has been moved to here:
https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=371601
19  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / My Bitcoin Note Design on: August 15, 2013, 08:46:16 AM
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Back:


Download PSD Files
20  Bitcoin / Project Development / Building the Next Generation of Crypto-Currency (developers required) on: May 25, 2013, 02:22:36 PM
The Mini-Blockchain Project

What is this project all about?

The goal of this project is to implement a new crypto-currency protocol designed to solve the "blockchain bloat" problem once and for all by replacing the full blockchain with a finite "mini-blockchain". Such a system would offer many benefits including consistently fast synchronization times, much more block space, faster transactions, and lower fees. Certainly not an easy problem to solve, but if it could be solved we are looking at truly new and unique improvements over the Bitcoin protocol.

We now believe that this problem finally has been cracked. The concept and technical details of the proposal can be found in the white paper (a little outdated now) and the project wiki. This new scheme has been analyzed by many intelligent people and we haven't found any major flaws. After a considerable amount of feedback, myself and several others are convinced the scheme is viable and we want to attempt an implementation.

Our objectives and approach

The main objective of this project is to bring together many new ideas and concepts while staying as true to Bitcoin as possible. This project will attempt to minimize and exclude any controversial proposals and ideas but remain open to new and experimental proposals which we believe could enhance the final system. We aim to take the safe and trusted route ever possible and avoid over-complicating the scheme by bringing together too many different ideas.

The main focus of this project is to implement the mini-blockchain protocol and show that it works before we do anything else. If or when that goal is achieved we will start looking at incorporating several other experimental concepts which have the potential to provide an array of new features and benefits. Some examples of such concepts include secure 0-confirmation transactions based on a withdrawal limit system and a dynamic max block size.

Since we are trying to avoid any controversial and unnecessary complications, that means no pre-mine and probably no PoS integration. The PoS system is controversial in a way because it appears to make the rich richer over time and the benefits of such a system really aren't observable for a long time anyway. Not to mention the mini-blockchain proposal is already complicated enough as it is, keeping things simple is the key here.

The next generation of crypto-currency

What is the next generation of crypto-currency and what separates this project from any other alt coin? Most of you will agree that 95% of the alt coins out there are essentially pump and dump scams which offer nothing new or useful. I would personally say there are less than half a dozen alt coins which shouldn't be labeled scam coins; Namecoin, Devcoin, PPCoin, Novacoin, and Litecoin, and perhaps 1 or 2 other alt coins. I'm not so sure about PPCoin and Novacoin but they do offer new PoS features.

Litecoin doesn't really offer much beyond faster block confirmation speeds and scrypt-based mining, but since it was one of the first alt coins to offer these new features it has gained a genuine foothold in the crypto-currency market. Not only does this project offer a new coin with unseen features, but those new features are not small or trivial. Imagine always being able to download the blockchain within seconds or minutes as well as significantly faster transaction speeds.

Why am I making such a big deal of this? Well consider threads like this:
WARNING! Bitcoin will soon block small transaction outputs
New video: Why the blocksize limit keeps Bitcoin free and decentralized

All this concern over max block sizes, the SD "spam dust", the transaction capacity reaching its limit, all of this is nicely solved with a mini-blockchain + account tree implementation. Now I'm not saying Bitcoin is obsolete or outdated or that this new scheme will replace it, Bitcoin still has certain advantages over the mini-blockchain scheme and vice versa. However if this scheme turns out to work it does have the potential to seriously compete with bitcoin.

It was only a matter of time before someone was able to improve on the Bitcoin protocol and offer a new coin with highly desirable advantages over the original protocol, but I don't think that will mean the original will ever die out. Just because this scheme can offer more scalability and speed doesn't make it better as a tool for storing wealth. It does sort of make it better as a currency though, which is really what we should be aiming for I believe.

So how will the project be organized?

See: [BOUNTY] $20,000 Mini-Blockchain Implementation


Project Address: 1AZjrg6h9nfvFt16kaszLTJkQi13kMwZz2
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