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1  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / consumer pull on: September 30, 2013, 08:02:31 PM

one of the demonstrators said without the money transfer companies, every aspect of his family's life would suffer: "There are no banking systems so that you can transfer money from one bank to the other. There is absolutely no other way other than the money transfer companies.

"It will affect my family because whether it's education, food, everyday living - if that money is not there, then clearly they won't be able to eat, they won't be able to educate themselves, they won't be able to do anything, so it's just allowing somebody to die."

surely bitcoin can help here ? how do we make it easy for the senders and receivers / let them know ?
2  Economy / Speculation / bitcoin all time high on: February 26, 2013, 02:44:22 PM
slightly preemptive thread, but first can we confirm that the view of the forum is that the previous high was recorded on June 8 2011 at mtgox as 31.9099 USD ? anyone want to admit to buying at the top ?

edited to the prevailing view
3  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / Bitcoin QE on: August 16, 2012, 09:45:25 PM
The 21m limit is by reasonably unanimous agreement between the existing users. That is, more than 50% of clients would have to decide to fork and run a different client to change it.

Let's say that the existing users are a small proportion of the people that will use bitcoin over the years. About 1%, if you will.

By and large, existing Keynesian economic policies use expansion of the money supply during lean times to devalue everything a little bit now and in the future, to get a lot right now, in order to "prime the economy", save/create employment, see us through the bad times, pay bankers bonuses etc etc. By and large, democratic countries at least do this because it wins votes right now, putting the burden on those who will vote later.

In a world where the 'other 99%' have started using bitcoin, but have less money than today's average user and don't use bitcoin as a savings vehicle (let's say price is largely stable so there are better investment opportunities elsewhere) why shouldn't they get together via a grassroots campaign during a global crisis, to move to a client that has a larger money supply ? The argument would be that the bitcoins are unfairly distributed and the rich have too many of them anyway. The regulation/cartels/barriers-to-entry/institutions that protect the super rich today from this happening more often are less likely to exist in bitcoin. In effect a majority agreement to apply a type of QE into the bitcoin economy. Would this be justifiable ? Would it have the desired effect on the worth of the newly issued bitcoins in people's pockets ? Would it stimulate anything, or make anything more equal ? Is there a technical reason why it couldn't happen in practice ? And what about going the other way ? While bitcoins are still being issued, is there any tipping point where users might want to make the block reward asymptote at less than 21m ?
4  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / On mt gox live on: June 02, 2012, 12:26:44 AM
To the tune of 'how much is that doggie in the window'

Oh why does mount gox live hang my iPad
The site with the wiggly line
Oh why does mount gox live hang my iPad
It really detracts from the shine

It seems you can look oh so briefly
To see what a bitcoin might cost
But the interweb packets keep streaming
Till Safari gets full and gets lost


I try to move on to clark moody
Or rotate to make the site tall
But safari just sits and sucks prices
And won't do my bidding at all


I once tried the site on my handset
It was all I could think of to do
But the interweb packets kept flowing
And my iphone gave up on them too


Perhaps it is only my iStuff
Perhaps that the interweb's broke
Or maybe 1PL6ej9K334XKnmRFbvxfF4Tzoeu7brZNR will fix it
He's surely that kind of a bloke

5  Other / Off-topic / good wife episode now available in uk on: April 12, 2012, 07:55:34 AM

I happened to see that the bitcoin episode from the good wife aired in the UK on 5th April 2012, so is now freely available on the 4od service in the uk

That is all
6  Bitcoin / Development & Technical Discussion / Miner advantage for empty blocks ? on: March 26, 2012, 11:16:53 PM
So the mystery miner seems quiet at the moment, nonetheless...

One of the elegant bits of bitcoin is that you can't start hashing a new block until you know the inputs, that is the new transactions you're going to have to hash, amongst other things.

If you decide to mine empty blocks, you take away one of the 'freshness' inputs that mean you can't work on the hash 'before time'. You are left with the hash of the previous block, and the time of your new block (am I right this is an input to your hash too ?) as things you're going to have to guess to get going early.

Normally the previous hash would be a large number, up to 256 bits, infeasible to exhaustively search while also searching for low hashes. However the bitcoin protocol also means that you know something about the previous hash, it meets the difficulty requirement, so your search space is reduced.

With a combination of choosing a time sufficiently far in the future and hashing with low input hashes only (changing the hash rather than the seed for instance), is there an advantage to be gained over other miners by trying to compute before the previous block is published ? Is this advantage increased if you wait until you have two valid hashes in a row before deciding to publish one ( if that's it, this should be easy to spot in the delay between mystery miner after someone else vs after himself) ? If there is an advantage does it increase as difficulty gets harder, making empty blocks trivial to find when difficulty is near the end ? You also have to gamble with the times, did the mystery miner blocks have odd time stamps ?

I'm sure you can set me straight, I have a nagging feeling that one exhaustive search is as hard as another in this case, at least until a long time in the future, so I should just accept that there's a lot of new hashing power, but if there's anything in this I would support moves to restrict empty blocks - this would comprehensively prevent such an attack
7  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / HMRC makes statement on Bitcoin in New Scientist on: June 04, 2011, 12:21:52 PM
Thought this was worth registering for...

"HMRC, the UK government's tax-colllecting body, says people do not incur a tax liability when trading in bitcoins as long as they do not turn their profits into regular cash. Once conventional money is involved, however, the income could become taxable, HMRC told New Scientist"  

This is an excerpt from the weekly print edition of New Scientist which came out in the UK last week (date on edition 4th June) - it's largely positive, compares Bitcoin to Paypal and Skype, and has an interview with Andresen

Preview here but registration for the full article
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