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1  Local / Español (Spanish) / El Salvador: Bitcoin será moneda de curso legal on: June 06, 2021, 04:03:21 PM
Ayer se anunció desde la conferencia sobre Bitcoin en Miami, que el presidente de El Salvador va presentar una propuesta de ley que hará de bitcoin "moneda de curso legal" para El Salvador.

El Salvador propondrá el bitcoin como moneda de curso legal


Quote from: Associated Press
SAN SALVADOR (AP) — El presidente de El Salvador, Nayib Bukele, propondrá la semana que viene al congreso del país convertir la criptomoneda en una moneda de curso legal en el país centroamericano, según anunció en un mensaje grabado que se mostró el sábado en una conferencia sobre bitcoin en Miami.
...
“La semana que viene enviaré al Congreso una ley que convertirá el bitcoin en una moneda de curso legal en El Salvador”, dijo Bukele. “En el corto plazo, esto generará empleos y ayudará a fomentar la inclusión financiera a miles de personas fuera de la economía formal, y en el medio y largo plazo esperamos que esta pequeña decisión pueda ayudarnos a llevar a la humanidad al menos un poco en la buena dirección”.
...
La moneda oficial en El Salvador es el dólar estadounidense.
...
Bukele indicó que los bitcoins serían “la forma más rápida de transferir 6.000 millones de dólares al año en remesas”. Gran parte de esas transferencias, señaló, se perdieron en intermediarios, y más de un millón de familias de bajos ingresos podrían beneficiarse del cambio.

También dijo que el 70% de la población de El Salvador no tiene cuenta bancaria y trabaja en la economía informal.
La fuente de la noticia es Associated Press.
2  Local / Hardware y Minería / Grupo de minería "Bitcoin en Venezuela" de Telegram on: November 16, 2020, 07:51:46 PM
Hace unos meses hice un grupo de Telegram independiente para hablar de temas generales relacionados a la minería Bitcoin.

El grupo es mio, y no está afiliado a ningún otro grupo, a ninguna organización, a ninguna compañía, revendedores de equipos, granjas o pool de particulares.

El grupo se mantiene limpio de publicidad no autorizada, hay cero tolerancia a bots, referidos, cloud mining o señales, o cpu mining. La idea es hablar sobre temas de minería (serios), incluso opinar de los revendedores, pool y demás. Ellos tienen sus propios grupos, pero hay temas que no van poder tratar bien en esos grupos. Por ejemplo, los precios internacionales de los equipos que ellos revenden.

Así mismo hay otra gente cuya misión en la vida parece ser recolectar dinero de incautos "para ayudar a la empobrecida Venezuela", pero la verdad del asunto es que ellos ni viven en el país ni nada de lo que hacen beneficia en lo mas mínimo a los que seguimos acá. Pero eso si, cuanto dinero captan de incautos en el extranjero... Por eso no acepto donativos de ningún tipo. Nadie puede hacerse llamar "representante de Bitcoin" en un país, eso es en si un engaño, y un grupo menos todavía.

Recuerden que si su intención es publicitar algo, como la venta de un equipo, deberá ser autorizado primero y no podrán hacerlo mas de una vez diaria. Sujeto a cambio sin previo aviso. Como dije arriba nada de referidos, ni esquemas de negocio multinivel, u otros engaños diversos o spam, serán baneados y denunciados a Telegram sin advertencia.

Si son de otro país bienvenidos, pero no les extrañe el enfoque Venezolano por la condición de ser el país con la electricidad mas barata del mundo (y en hiperinflación, todos los días vale menos).

A la gente que desea tratar el tema de la minería Bitcoin con seriedad, se les invita a unirse mediante este enlace: https://t.me/bitcoinenvenezuela
3  Other / Off-topic / The US electrical system is not 120V on: June 23, 2020, 06:35:34 PM
I just had to share this youtube video. Finally i am able to understand the American system, or why they get such high voltage and high capacity at home (miners rejoice). It is incredibly informative for those of us who don't live there, and probably, for those living there unaware of why this work the way it works.

Will make some spoilers later, but first I'll give you some time to watch it.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jMmUoZh3Hq4

My country uses 120v as well, but this is an apartment that gets two of three phases as explained in the video for 3 phase near the end, which is apparently common there for commercial office etc.

Warning: This video is a bit technical, its about how power is delivered to the American home. It might require some thinking Cheesy

Mentioned but not explained in video: The result of 120v is a historical result from the dispute from Edison's 120 DC and Tesla's 240 60Hz AC (so called War of the Currents). America couldn't ignore the advantage of AC, but so many 100~120v appliances were already in the market, so that was the compromise solution.

See, a 120v incandescent light bulb can work the same with AC or DC, but feed it 240v and it pops.

And then there is Japan (also not mentioned in the video)... They took the 100v part way too literally (because DC power loses voltage over distance quickly, in America Edison company tried to keep their customers (next to generation) at 120v and the limit was when it went down to 100v a few blocks away. And to confuse things further, Japan had power plants imported from both America and Europe, resulting in their ridiculous half 60hz and half 50hz 100v country, the only one in the world.

Well i guess if you want to be pendantic, you would say your country is 11kV. Put a proper transformer and it will deliver you anything, provided they let you do so in the first place... The refresh can't be helped but note that 60Hz makes transformers save up to 20% in coil vs 50Hz, in that regard Europe took a poor design choice. Yes, Tesla chose 240v@60Hz for a reason, but Europeans wanted things those days to fit the 1, 2, 5 metric rule (like the coinage), so many went 220v and others 240v @ 50hz (converging into 230v in modern times).

Just for uniqueness sake, the only country that uses Tesla's ideal, is Guyana. All other (few remaining) 240v countries use 50Hz, only Guyana officially uses 60Hz @ 240v.
4  Bitcoin / Mining software (miners) / S17 (and variants) owners beware: Do NOT update your firmware! on: June 20, 2020, 04:34:23 PM
Once again Bitmain attacks its customers. In another attempt to prevent people from switching firmware, last week they pushed an update that makes signature checks in sd updates.

It is very likely that the same thing will spread to all other Bitmain models...

Of course this means the firmware community will have to find a solution (again). If i were to guess, using the serial port...

Remember, DO NOT upgrade the firmware on your S17, T17, + or not, pro or not.

I'm sure the community will find a solution, it always does. But it might not be easy, and might not be pretty. Protect your investment, don't let the manufacturer decide what you can and what you cannot do with your equipment.

At worse, the whole controller would need to be replaced.

Quote from: jW // FarmGod.io
Bitmain has pushed new s17+ firmwares 18th of june (and eventually will update s17 too) where it seems sd card updating does NOT work anymore! Be careful, dont upgrade your miners especially if you are looking forward to try braiinsOS for s17 soon. We will have a closer eye on the situation.

A week ago we already noticed additional security in place in the s19 firmwares, signature checks in sd upgrading, hoping nothing will be carried over to s17.

Quote from: Atlas
It’s implemented on the hardware level, xilinx SoC chip supports secure booting by verifying the signature of the boot loader and FPGA bitstream. Bitmain activated this feature in s19’s
...
Unless you have the private key to sign your firmware
...
you just need to replace the Xilinx chip with a new one
5  Local / Hardware y Minería / Braiins OS+ sistema operativo para mineros asic mejora eficiencia 25% S17s, S9s. on: June 18, 2020, 10:46:06 PM


Braiins OS+ es el único firmware para asics hecho de cero basado en software libre, es el sistema operativo para el equipo de minería. Existen muchas ofertas que no pasan de ser modificaciones de otros (cgminer), solo este tiene su propio bosminer hecho completamente desde cero en lenguaje Rust.

Actualmente la versión para la familia S9 es del 25 de octubre (10-25). Esta versión soporta únicamente equipos S9, S9j y S9i. Su mejora mas importante respecto a la de septiembre, es la corrección del ruido de los ventiladores en caso de una des-conexión con el pool. (este problema no existe en la versión de junio).

La versión actual para la familia S17, es del 5 de noviembre. Esta versión soporta la S17, S17pro. En pruebas, también soporta la S17+, T17 y T17+.

En desarrollo se está trabajando con la M20 y la S19.

Hasta ahora, se ha llegado a reportar eficiencia record de 68 vatios por TH en las S9, y de 29 vatios por TH en las S17. Es mas normal ver que las S9 consuman unos 80 vatios por TH y las S17 unos 35, pero estos resultados fueron logrados por personas que probaron reducir a distintos valores el límite de consumo de energía, una característica de Braiins OS+ que es un software enfocado en la eficiencia y longevidad en lugar de la velocidad ciega.

Para soporte en español, la vía mas rápida es en Telegram por el Grupo oficial para Braiins OS+ en español.

Noticias:


Hoy salió una nueva versión:



Braiins OS+ 20.11 | Versión Completa liberada para S17+, T17, and T17+

Puntos clave:
  • Mejorado rendimiento del ajuste para todos los modelos X17
  • Una sola Caja de Herramientas BOS que puede usarse para instalación por lotes, configuración, etc. en cualquier mezcla de modelos S9 y X17
  • Otros arreglos de fallos menores y características mejoradas

Mas detalles: https://braiins.com/blog/development-update-braiins-os-20-11
6  Bitcoin / Mining support / After Jun 10, Bitmain will no longer repair these Antminers: S11, S9, T9+, etc.. on: May 09, 2020, 01:42:33 PM
Bitmain is sending this message to customers, quite surprising and at the same time worrying. I didn't know you could still send an S1 for repairs...

Quote
In order to better assist you to meet the challenges of market changes and technological innovation, we will stop providing maintenance services for the following models from May 10, 2020:
 
A3, B3, D3, DR3, DR5, G1, G2, L3, L3 ++, L5, R1, R3, R4, S1, S3, S5, S7,  S9, S9I, S9J, S11, T9 +, T11, V9, X3, Z9MINI, Z9
 
In addition, we will stop providing maintenance services for E3 from June 10, 2020.
If you have maintenance requirements for the above models, please create a repair ticket before the deadline and send the machine to our repair sites according to our After-Sales Maintenance Policy. Although we will stop the maintenance service of the above models, we will still be happy to provide you with product consulting services, including online and hotline customer service. At the same time, you can also get the product-related FAQ from our knowledge base and community.

You gotta love how they phrase is as "to better assist you" when they are actually assisting you less. It is surprising to see the S9 in there, given a recent article that states 23% of the current world hashrate is still being produced by S9s...

While some of the models are really old, some like the S11 are surprising to see being dropped.

Sure they just want to focus on the S17, whatever. Hopefully more people will now offer independent repair services.

So if you still have some of those models and you want THEIR repair service, better send them now...
7  Local / Hardware y Minería / Braiins OS (para S9, S9j y S9i) inaugura grupo de Telegram para hispanohablantes on: April 02, 2020, 06:53:04 PM
Quote
Braiins OS es el primer sistema de código abierto para ASIC
• Braiins OS + tiene algoritmos patentados adicionales para el autoajuste

Preguntas frecuentes
* Descarga: braiins-os.com/es/info
* Dispositivos compatibles: Antminer S9, S9i, S9j
* Próximamente: Antminer S17, T17: https://braiins-os.com/plus/get-notified
* Instalar: utilizando SSH, tarjeta SD o interfaz web (solo S9)
* Documentación (instalación, actualizaciones, restauración de fábrica, etc.): braiins-os.com/es/docs

➡️➡️ Obtenga un 50% de descuento en las tarifas de grupo de minería en Slush Pool: braiins-os.com/es/slushpool

🇺🇸 Grupo de habla inglesa (principal): https://t.me/BraiinsOS
🇷🇺 русскоязычная группа: https://t.me/BraiinsOS_RU
🇨🇳 Braiins OS + [中文 社区]: https://t.me/BraiinsOS_ZH
🇪🇸 Comunidad en Español: https://t.me/BraiinsOS_ES

Braiins OS es un firmware alternativo, libre de código abierto para mineros S9, S9j y S9i (por ahora).

Recién el 30 de Marzo salió la primera versión oficial en reemplazar cgminer. Cgminer es el software tradicionalmente empleado para minar bitcoin, pero su desarrollador (Con Kolivas) lo declaró en abandono y dio su visto bueno al proyecto para reemplazarlo: bosminer, del grupo que opera el pool Slushpool junto con su nueva propuesta de protocolo de comunicación entre pool y minero denominada: Stratum v2.

Bosminer entre otras cosas permite comunicación comprimida y cifrada entre mineros y pool, a diferencia de cgminer (y SUS derivados como bmminer) que lo hacen en texto claro y sin protección alguna. Así mismo bosminer introduce otras mejoras como la posibilidad de permitir al minero escoger el trabajo a procesar, cosa que normalmente decide el pool y como reducciones significativas en la latencia.

Bosminer restableció una característica que aparentemente perdieron los fabricantes de asic: La posibilidad de minar en varios pool simultáneamente (por ejemplo 2 pool con 50% para cada uno). Esto es especialmente interesante para comparar cual de los pool está pagando mas en determinado momento.

Es muy probable que bosminer se comience a usar en otros firmware oficiales, la gente de Canaan ya mostró interés. Así mismo otros pool como btc.com mostraron interés en implementar Stratum V2.

De momento puede probarse con Braiins OS. El nuevo Braiins OS tiene 2 versiones, la comunitaria libre de costo, y la empresarial (+) con un devfee del 2%. La diferencia fundamental reside en el autoajuste de la versión +, y como oferta de lanzamiento el pool fee en Slushpool se reduce a la mitad para los usuarios de bOS+ de manera que terminarían pagando 1% en lugar de 2% en el pool junto al 2% de bOS+ para un total de 3%.

Esta versión + es completamente opcional. Se puede activar luego de instalar la versión comunitaria instalando el paquete bos_plus por la interfaz web o via ssh con el comando opkg install bos_plus. También puede revertirse en cualquier momento a la versión comunitaria.

Efectivamente Braiins OS es Software Libre y lo que usa como base es la distribución Linux OpenWRT. Se espera que las siguientes versiones añadan soporte a los equipos de minería S17 de Bitmain que es uno de los mas solicitados, entre otros.

Braiins OS puede usarse con cualquier pool, no es necesario usarlo con Slushpool.
8  Other / Politics & Society / Venezuelan Leader Maduro Is Charged in the U.S. With Drug Trafficking on: March 26, 2020, 04:37:35 PM
Official indictment press release:

Nicolás Maduro Moros and 14 Current and Former Venezuelan Officials Charged with Narco-Terrorism, Corruption, Drug Trafficking and Other Criminal Charges

Quote
Maduro and Other High Ranking Venezuelan Officials Allegedly Partnered With the FARC to Use Cocaine as a Weapon to “Flood” the United States

Fomer President of Venezuela Nicolás Maduro Moros, Venezuela’s vice president for the economy, Venezuela’s Minister of Defense, and Venezuela’s Chief Supreme Court Justice are among those charged in New York City; Washington, DC; and Miami, along with current and former Venezuelan government officials as well as two Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia (FARC) leaders, announced U.S. Attorney General William P. Barr, U.S. Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman of the Southern District of New York, U.S. Attorney Ariana Fajardo Orshan of the Southern District of Florida, Assistant Attorney General Brian A. Benczkowski of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, Acting Administrator Uttam Dhillon of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and Acting Executive Associate Director Alysa D. Erichs of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).

So if we go back to the year 1989, Manuel Noriega in Panama was accused of similar charges. This of course was followed by the invasion of Panama and the capture and extraction of the accused, who was trialed and sentenced (for life) in the USA.

Is this the prelude to a similar formula to end Maduro's regime? During the middle of COVID-19 no less... Well at least the people are conveniently isolating themselves in their homes...

The New York times also wrote an article:

Federal prosecutors accused President Nicolás Maduro of participating in a “narco-terrorism conspiracy” in a major escalation of the Trump administration’s efforts to pressure him to leave office.

Quote
WASHINGTON — President Nicolás Maduro of Venezuela was indicted in the United States on Thursday in a narco-terrorism and cocaine trafficking conspiracy in which prosecutors said he led a violent drug cartel even as he amassed power.

The indictment of a head of state was highly unusual and served as an escalation of the Trump administration’s campaign to pressure Mr. Maduro to leave office after his widely disputed re-election in 2018. Mr. Maduro has led Venezuela’s economy into shambles and prompted an exodus of millions of people into neighboring countries.
...
The State Department is offering rewards of up to $15 million for information leading to the capture or conviction of Mr. Maduro, who remains in Venezuela, said Geoffrey S. Berman, the United States attorney in Manhattan.

So... Open season to hunt the current Venezuelan regime, open to all civilian contractors worldwide? Hmmm basically they just painted a giant target symbol to my country...
9  Other / Politics & Society / The Coder and the Dictator: Petro creator talks with the New York Times on: March 24, 2020, 02:51:36 PM
This article was recently published by the New York Times. It tells the story about who and how the State backed cryptocurrency known as Petro came to be.

When Petro was originally announced (Nov 2017?), it sounded quite nice and very close to typical cryptocurrencies. I remember that December being honestly surprised (because access to foreign currencies was forbidden) and there were rumors that it would have a limited production, run decentralized as a token on the Ethereum blockchain executing rules defined by an ERC-20 smartcontract.

Then surprisingly, everything changed. A Russian team was brought instead, it would still be a smartcontract token but running in the NEM blockchain instead. Also the price was somehow pegged to the barrel of oil, like "stable" coins do. The gov made an ICO presale event and raised hundreds of thousands of dollars, at this point i gave them the equivalent of $100 in bitcoin, i never saw that money again...

Indeed after the event and the unknown amount of money was raised all went silent. A few months later, the guy in charge (Carlos Vargas, mentioned in the article) and the Russians with their NEM token were kicked out from the project. Months later we learned that Maduro gave the project to yet another team, they turned to Dash and made Petro (again) from that. By a completely unrelated source, i was told this was hacked and had to be redone (again) a 4th time, which is the current Petro iteration the government has been running. Of course, ignorant of technology (same way they are ignorant of economy), they chose to hide the source code (in violation of their own law that mandates that ALL State developed software projects must go public domain) and centralize operations to a very few nodes and a single online wallet without releasing any software so that nobody else could participate with nodes or wallets.

In any case this article reveals many interesting things about how Petro came to be, in its first iteration which was the one we were talking and discussing about in the beginning. At some point we were even told it would be possible to mine it, which of course never happened. It is also unknown how many people lost their money in the Petro ICO presale event of 2018, or what happened to the Russian NEM team...

But you are also going to read something interesting, about how things are handled by the government of Venezuela. Some of you might be surprised for us it has been so long of the same things (abuse) that we somehow got used to it them, but for a foreigner they might get (rightly) shocked. No, they are not exaggerating to sell more newspapers, when they portray the government as a sort of criminal gang that is quick to extort and threaten people when things aren't done exactly how they want it, no matter how mistaken that might be. Its the very reason Venezuela economy went so low, the regime does not tolerate anyone but "Yes men", or else...

And its why you see crazy nut things happening all the time (ie. Maduro just ordered that nobody pays rent for 6 months, not even commerce). Maduro himself does not like books or reading much, but what little political formation he got, came from a Leninist party that was disbanded during Chávez regime to join the larger PSUV (which the Communist Party refused to join into). In any case what little insight Maduro might have of the economy, is basically either the one practiced in the now gone eastern bloc "Real Socialism" central planned (command) economy, and/or the idea that destroying the coin and the economy destroys capitalism so its even better... Too bad in practice what gets destroyed are people's lives instead, as the wealthy have the means to either flee or survive by bribing their way into the new regime.

Anyway here are some excerpts from the article, do read it entirely if you can. Ask if you have doubts. No i never met in person anyone involved, and as is always the case in these situations, the truth takes years to come out due to the risks involved. I must admit the Petro creator Gabriel Jiménez, having previously participated in anti-maduro activities (in the US, no less) was pretty suicidal accepting such a State commission. Its truly a miracle he wasn't imprisoned and the keys thrown as is often done here to political opposition, foreign journalists or even mere policy dissenters, often among their own ranks.

Oh and while this is about the Petro, do note that the same happens with everything in this country. Same attitude, same results.


...
But whatever Mr. Jiménez felt about the regime, he felt just as strongly about the potential of cryptocurrency. When the Maduro administration approached him about creating a digital coin, Mr. Jiménez saw an opportunity to change his country from within. If a national cryptocurrency was done right, Mr. Jiménez believed, he could give the government what it wanted — a way to fight hyperinflation — while also stealthily introducing technology that would give Venezuelans a measure of freedom from a government that dictated every detail of daily life.
...
“The actual goal of the project was to change the economic model of the oppressive regime,” he told The Times recently. “This was my mission and my gamble, in a bet that ended costing everything I had in my life: my friends, my partners, my reputation, my love, my company and my country.”
...
The situation rekindled Mr. Jiménez’s long-running interest in cryptocurrencies. He began paying his employees in a digital coin; even with the crazy volatility of the crypto markets, it was more stable than a Venezuelan bank account, and it wasn’t subject to the Maduro regime’s diktats.
...
Initially, the Maduro regime saw Bitcoin as a threat. The technology, after all, used a decentralized network to create and move money, and no authority was in charge. But then some members of the government noticed that this cut both ways. Cryptocurrency could also be a way for Venezuela to escape sanctions levied by the United States and international organizations.
...
In September 2017, an official loyal to Mr. Maduro floated the idea of a digital currency backed by Venezuela’s oil reserves. This was unorthodox: One of the tenets of Bitcoin is that its value does not derive from a natural resource or government fiat, only the laws of mathematics. But the distinction faded in the face of Venezuela’s desperation. The official, Carlos Vargas, read about Mr. Jiménez’s crypto work in a local publication and asked for a meeting.
...
The vice president was friendly and curious, and suggested that this was Mr. Jiménez’s project — they were just there to learn from him. Mr. El Aissami wanted to know how many Petros there would be, and whether new ones could be mined like Bitcoin. Mr. Jiménez thought that the officials didn’t have a particularly clear idea of how cryptocurrencies worked.
...
Mr. Jiménez opted to base the Petro on Ethereum, Bitcoin’s leading competitor, which would allow it to trade in the kind of free, publicly visible market that was otherwise forbidden in Venezuela. No one on the government side seemed to be worried about this — or even aware of it.
...
When the president gave Mr. Jiménez the floor, he went over the basics of the Petro, including an initial issuance of $200 million. Then the finance minister spoke up, and for the first time, Mr. Jiménez’s plans were challenged. The minister took out a manila folder with a map of the Orinoco Belt and said he wanted the Petro to be backed on an ongoing basis by certain oil reserves there, which were worth orders of magnitude more — many billions of dollars.

Mr. Jiménez pushed back: It was one thing to tie the Petro’s initial price to oil, but if it couldn’t trade freely after that — at whatever price investors felt it was worth — then it wouldn’t be a revolutionary product. A Petro whose price always reflected oil reserves would essentially be a bond
...
Mr. Maduro announced that the currency would, in fact, be tied to a specific block of the Orinoco Belt — exactly what Mr. Jiménez had argued against. He complained to Mr. Vargas, but was shot down: “You cannot contradict the word of the president.” Mr. Vargas told Mr. Jiménez to rewrite the Petro’s white paper to reflect Mr. Maduro’s decision — and to do it quickly.
...
When he tried to resist sharing a digital copy of the white paper, he said, the minister told him by phone: “You have to understand that this is now a project of the state. If you don’t hand over the file, I won’t be responsible for what happens to you.”
...
The government told his team that they would need to compete to have a role in the Petro’s launch — against a Russian group of murky origin.
...
In any event, the Russians showed little interest in doing any work. Mr. Jiménez and his company were left to handle almost everything as the Feb. 20, 2018, Petro launch date approached. That is how Mr. Jiménez found himself feverishly coding all night under armed guard, and then summoned to the presidential palace early the next day.
...
On live television, Mr. Jiménez saw no way out. He scribbled his signature and gave a forced grin as photographers moved in.

Mr. Jiménez took a seat and wondered what he had just done. The president said that Venezuela had already collected $725 million from investors. He thanked Mr. Jiménez by name, as well as The Social Us. “It’s a company founded and run by young geniuses from Venezuela,” the president said. “You stay crazy.”
...
The Petro never really got off the ground. On March 19, President Trump signed an executive order barring Americans from using it. The same day, an Associated Press article about Mr. Jiménez noted that he had helped create the Petro for Mr. Maduro only a few years after interning for an anti-Maduro member of the House of Representatives. The congresswoman, Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, immediately wrote a letter asking the Treasury Department to investigate “whether Venezuelan national Gabriel Jiménez meets the criteria to be sanctioned under the appropriate authorities.”
...
In Caracas, Mr. Jiménez was barraged by criticism from the political left and right. The Social Us found it impossible to get new business. In July, a lawyer delivered a 68-page document to the National Constituent Assembly, asking that Mr. Jiménez be investigated for “treason against the homeland.”
...
In April 2019, he sold his 2007 Toyota Autana and bought a ticket to the United States. When he arrived, he moved in with his father
...
Mr. Jiménez still had essentially no money, but a crypto start-up in the San Francisco Bay Area allowed him to work out of its offices, eat from the fridge and stay on a couch in the chief executive’s apartment.
...
10  Local / Español (Spanish) / Bittrex expulsa a Venezuela y otros 30 paises. ¡Retiros hasta el 29 de octubre! on: October 20, 2019, 08:18:44 PM
Como lo leyeron, 31 paises han sido expulsados arbitrariamente del Exchange basado en Malta, Bittrex. Dan plazo solo hasta el 29 de octubre de 2019 para hacer los retiros.

A los correos envían este mensaje:

Quote from: Bittrex <no-reply@bittrex.com>
We regret to notify you that Bittrex International will be ceasing operations for your country of residence. All trading and account access will be halted on Tuesday, October 29 at 19:00 UTC/21:00 CEST. Below you'll find some helpful information about this process.

Withdraw Coins/Tokens

Please follow these steps in order to withdraw your coins and tokens from Bittrex International.  You must withdraw your coins/tokens by no later than Tuesday, October 29 by 19:00 UTC/21:00 CEST.  

At this time, you’ll want to withdraw your tokens by logging into https://international.bittrex.com and clicking Wallets. Next, you will need to search for the wallet and click the withdrawal button to open the withdraw dialog. Then, you will be able to withdraw your balance. Please note if your balance is below the minimum withdrawal amount for the wallet, you will not be able to withdraw it. The minimum withdrawal for all coins must be greater than 3 times the fee. For example, your balance in BTC must be .00150001 or greater as the fee is .0005.

Details: https://bittrex.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/115000198452-How-can-I-withdraw-my-coins-  https://bittrex.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/115000198452-How-can-I-withdraw-my-coins-

Customer Support

If you need additional assistance, please reach out to https://support.bittrex.com/. https://bittrex.zendesk.com/hc/en-us

After logging into support (note: different login/account than Bittrex International), select the “submit a request” button in the top right corner or use live chat to connect with an agent.

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Esta es la lista de paises víctimas del nuevo atropello que hace Bittrex al discriminar millones de personas por su país de procedencia:

  • Afghanistan
  • Egypt
  • Bosnia-Herzegowina
  • Botswana
  • Cambodia
  • Central African Republic
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo
  • Côte d'Ivoire
  • Ethiopia
  • Eritrea
  • Ghana
  • Guinea
  • Guinea-Bissau
  • Guyana
  • Iraq
  • Laos
  • Lebanon
  • Libya
  • Maldives
  • Pakistan
  • Sri Lanka
  • Somalia
  • Sudan
  • South Sudan
  • Trinidad and Tobago (
  • Tunisia
  • Uganda
  • Vanuatu
  • Venezuela
  • Yemen
  • Zimbabwe

No dicen porqué, pero se merecen todo nuestro desprecio. ¿Hasta donde van a llegar? Saquen todo su dinero de Bittrex como protesta, y boicoteen sus servicios, antes de que también les llegue su turno...

Anuncio oficial.
11  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / Terrorists Turn to Bitcoin for Funding, and They’re Learning Fast (NYT article) on: August 20, 2019, 12:29:52 AM
Just what we needed, more mass media scare...

Terrorists Turn to Bitcoin for Funding, and They’re Learning Fast

By Nathaniel Popper

Aug 18, 2019


SAN FRANCISCO — Hamas, the militant Palestinian group, has been designated a terrorist organization by Western governments and some others and has been locked out of the traditional financial system. But this year its military wing has developed an increasingly sophisticated campaign to raise money using Bitcoin.

In the latest version of the website set up by the wing, known as the Qassam Brigades, every visitor is given a unique Bitcoin address where he or she can send the digital currency, a method that makes the donations nearly impossible for law enforcement to track.

The site, which is available in seven languages and features the brigades’ logo, with a green flag and a machine gun, contains a well-produced video that explains how to acquire and send Bitcoin without tipping off the authorities.

Terrorists have been slow to join other criminal elements that have been drawn to Bitcoin and have used it for everything from drug purchases to money laundering.

But in recent months, government authorities and organizations that track terrorist financing have begun to raise alarms about an uptick in the number of Islamist terrorist organizations experimenting with Bitcoin and other digital coins.

The yields from individual campaigns appear to be modest — in the tens of thousands of dollars. But the authorities note that terrorist attacks often require little funding. And the groups’ use of cryptocurrencies appears to be getting more sophisticated.

“You are going to see more of this,” said Yaya Fanusie, a former analyst with the Central Intelligence Agency who now does consulting on rogue actors using cryptocurrencies. “This is going to be a part of the terrorist financing mix, and it is something that people should pay attention to.”

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin has drawn attention to the issue in two speeches in recent months, calling for more active monitoring from cryptocurrency businesses.

“We are dedicating a lot of resources very specifically to this space,” Sigal Mandelker, the Treasury Department’s under secretary for terrorism and financial intelligence, said in an interview. “It is still relatively new to them, but I’m confident that we’re going to see more of it in the future.”

Cryptocurrencies are attractive to lawbreakers because they make it possible to hold and transfer money without a central authority, like PayPal, that can shut down accounts and freeze funds. Anyone in the world can create a Bitcoin address and begin receiving digital tokens without even providing a name or an address.

The online markets where Bitcoin can buy drugs are hosting nearly $1 billion in commerce a year, even as the authorities have shut down numerous leading markets.

Countries that are facing American economic sanctions, like Iran, Venezuela and Russia, have also taken steps toward creating their own cryptocurrencies to circumvent them.

Bitcoin has been slower to take off among terrorists in part because of its technical sophistication, terrorism experts said. Terrorist groups have also had methods of using the traditional financial system without needing Bitcoin.

Hamas, which controls the Palestinian coastal territory of Gaza, has traditionally survived on hundreds of millions of dollars of donations from foreign governments like Qatar. The Islamic State in Syria subsisted on taxes and fees it collected in the territories it controlled.

But both organizations have seen their access to money significantly curtailed. Israel maintains a strict blockade of Gaza, with Egypt’s help, and Hamas has been squeezed over the last year by financial cuts imposed by the rival, Western-backed Palestinian Authority. And the Islamic State has lost most of its territory.

“They seem to be reacting to all the economic sanctions by saying, ‘We are going to try using Bitcoin,’” said Steven Stalinsky, the executive director of the Middle East Media Research Institute, a nonprofit that tracks and translates communication from terrorist groups.

Mr. Stalinsky’s organization, known as Memri, is about to publish a 253-page report about the increased signs of cryptocurrency use by terrorist organizations, particularly groups in Syria that are on the run as Islamic militants have lost almost all the territory they used to hold.

A leading sheikh with one of the biggest terrorist groups in Syria, Hayat Tahrir al-Sham, posted a long video to his online followers in July, explaining the origins of Bitcoin and declaring that it is permissible to use for charitable donations, according to a translation of the video by Memri.

A number of online researchers have recently discovered campaigns by Syrian militants that asked followers to send donations to Bitcoin addresses they posted on Telegram, a popular social network. One post, found by Raphael Gluck, an independent researcher, put the Bitcoin address under the picture of a man wearing camouflage and shooting a military-style rifle.

Signs that terrorists were using Bitcoin had been sporadic for several years. Mr. Fanusie, the former C.I.A. analyst, drew public attention to a fund-raising campaign begun in 2016 by the Mujahedeen Shura Council in the Environs of Jerusalem, a group based in Gaza that is designated a terrorist organization.

But the early efforts were clumsy. The Gaza campaign provided a single Bitcoin address, which made it easier for law enforcement to track where the money was coming from. The wallet advertised by the group took in only a few thousand dollars’ worth of Bitcoin.

When the Qassam Brigades began collecting money late last year, an Israeli research firm, Whitestream, determined that Hamas was keeping at least some of the money in wallets that were set up with the American cryptocurrency company Coinbase.

Coinbase’s chief compliance officer, Jeff Horowitz, said that after tying the account to the Qassam Brigades, it immediately froze the account and reported it to the United States authorities.

An American man was arrested in May on accusations that he made small donations to the Qassam campaign and bragged about them on social media.

But the Qassam Brigades learned to cover their tracks. Instead of keeping a wallet with a Bitcoin exchange, which can track information about customers and send it to the authorities, the terrorist group set up wallets fully under its control.

The Qassam site also started providing a new Bitcoin address to each potential donor, a practice that is essentially impossible with traditional financial accounts. The Qassam Brigades appear to have borrowed the method from a media site connected to the Islamic State, which has been generating endless numbers of new Bitcoin addresses to collect money for nearly two years.

The Qassam Brigades did not reply to several requests for comment.

“The terrorists are learning how to send and receive digital currency in a smarter way,” said Itsik Levy, the chief executive of Whitestream, the Israeli intelligence firm tracking Bitcoin transactions. “Why would terrorists not take advantage of this? It is great for them.”

Mr. Levy said the sums being sent were likely to be small, but were getting harder to track.

The Treasury Department, under Mr. Mnuchin, has been promoting international rules that would require cryptocurrency exchanges to do a full identity check on anyone sending digital tokens out of a wallet.

This could make it easier to spot certain illegal transactions. But terrorists and other criminals who use cryptocurrency are already picking up methods that would make it easier to circumvent the new rules, in part by using cryptocurrencies that provide even more privacy than Bitcoin.

Juan Zarate, who was the deputy national security adviser for combating terrorism under President George W. Bush, said this was far from the biggest illegal use of cryptocurrencies but one that needed to be watched.

“I think we are still in the experimentation phase for terrorist groups — they are trying to figure out how best to do this,” said Mr. Zarate, now an adviser to Coinbase. “What’s a challenge is that you see them continuing to experiment.”

Follow Nathaniel Popper on Twitter: @nathanielpopper.

Isabel Kershner contributed reporting from Jerusalem.

What do you think this "news" would do to affect bitcoin price? Or increase adoption, by Streisand effect? Smiley
12  Other / Politics & Society / Report From Venezuela: An Inside Look At A Country In Free Fall on: May 13, 2019, 08:19:01 PM
Disclaimer: The author from the quoted article, is co-founder of the altcoin Reserve (RSV) (another USD pegged coin). That said i think its worth reading, as few articles correctly explain the Venezuelan's situation in English. I just stumbled on it while reading about their interest in introducing their coin to Venezuela.

Report From Venezuela: An Inside Look At A Country In Free Fall

Miguel Morel - Nicolás Maduro in Bolívars. Artwork by Cryptograffiti.

Venezuela is in a downward spiral. The Americans are involved. The Cubans are involved. The Russians are involved. Other countries you’ve probably never heard of are involved. The epistemic environment is poisoned by divergent geopolitical interests. Affairs in Venezuela are thus opaque.

American discourse on this issue unsurprisingly contextualizes the crisis in terms most relevant to domestic political battles, namely point-scoring in the tiresome capitalism vs. socialism ideological war. This is probably the least helpful framing for understanding what actually went wrong. And something has gone deeply wrong.

The only thing more interesting than analyzing a failed state from the comfort of one’s armchair is seeing it in person, so I packed my bags and bought a plane ticket to Latin America. The embassy wouldn’t give me a travel visa to Venezuela itself because I’m American, but many Venezuelans have fled to Colombia and Argentina. Everyone there has front row seats to the crisis, so I headed to Bogotá, the capital of Colombia. Conrad Weiss, a Palladium correspondent from Europe, didn’t even need a visa. He flew directly to Caracas.

...

Venezuelan grocery stores and petrol stations are drained wholesale within hours of new shipments. The government chooses to highly subsidize certain goods such as food and oil, which is the reason this dynamic exists. Goods owned by the state are for everyone, according to Chavismo, and when your country is in a downward spiral, the entrepreneurial thing to do is take as much of the free food and oil as you can, throw it in the back of a truck, and transport it to the border.

...

I said previously that the only feasible way for regular Venezuelans to leave the country is through the Cúcuta border. But there is another way, at least for mafiosos doing a lot of business. No vehicles are allowed to cross from Venezuela to Colombia, so the only way to move large amounts of supplies is through the jungle. The military has cut some ad-hoc pathways, but there’s a price. Smugglers have to give up 10–15% of their goods to the soldiers in exchange for their assistance.

Refugees don’t get the same deal from the Cúcuta border guards, probably because they’re not repeat customers.

...

In an effort to hold as few Bolívars as possible, citizens have resorted to trading with their compatriots with American or Colombian bank accounts via Facebook messenger, Instagram, or Whatsapp.

...

Taken together, one gets the impression of a militarily organized Venezuelan state with the capacity to mobilize large segments of the population. Maybe they can—but here’s the punchline: the Venezuelan Army itself only has 71,000 personnel.

...

No one really uses straight cash at this point. Instead, they prefer bank wires. To acquire cash, you have to pay a premium because there’s basically no physical paper left to print Bolívars. The physical paper shortage also applies to toilet paper. There isn’t much of it around. If you have some at your hotel, you may have to bring it with you. Food is also scarce, a subject which has been somewhat controversial. Nevertheless, Venezuelans are losing an average of 24 pounds a year. Currently, the reality is that if you’re not so well-off, you’re in trouble, though if you’re wealthy, you can find food in places normal people can’t afford.

...

Venezuela poured money into social programs designed to shore up political support. Even strategically useful ones, such as education, set up young Venezuelans to enter an economy in which non-oil exports had collapsed and the currency was moving from overvaluation into hyperinflation. Most importantly, the ongoing and entrenched problem of corruption undermined these ventures at every side. None of these problems were entirely original to the governments of Chavez and Maduro, but all were exacerbated by them.

I read the entire article and its very accurate. Americans are supposed to get a visa to enter now, which of course can't be obtained from within the USA anymore (it might be possible to obtain one from one of the Maduro's friendly countries, such as Bolivia).

Bogota is actually very pretty, ordered and clean compared to current Caracas. 30, maybe even 40 years ago Caracas looked as clean as Bogota, but not anymore (and just taking the pictures can be quite dangerous with the rampant crime).

His article is quite correct. Thankfully they sent another colleague to confirm certain details, and the testimonies from the people fleeing the destroyed economy are also accurate. Corruption and crime are the main results of the current regime. There was corruption before, but not as much crime.

He explains how merchants are starting to accept any money, informally (probably illegally, but that's the norm here). Just today i saw an imported product with a sign: $20 (as in USD). A few days ago i asked the price of a repaired chair and the shop owner told me $30, he didn't even bothered mentioning bolivares at all.

Petro was a waste of money to anyone who invested in it, it doesn't work like a crypto at all and nobody wants them. Obviously Maduro isn't going to join Swift right when Visa and Mastercard are leaving. But in the end the Russians didn't want Petros but actual gold as payment... Petro is backed in a promise made by a "government" nobody believes in, no matter how "friendly" a foreign power might look...
13  Other / Politics & Society / Venezuela: Guaidó pledges end of Maduro era in militaristic video on: April 30, 2019, 01:12:01 PM
Venezuela: Guaidó pledges end of Maduro era in militaristic video

Flanked by soldiers near Caracas airbase, opposition leader promises liberation

A military uprising appears to be under way in Venezuela after the opposition leader, Juan Guaidó, posted a video of himself flanked by soldiers, promising to end the rule of President Nicolás Maduro .
Venezuela opposition leader claims coup is under way – live news
Read more

“The moment is now,” Guaidó said in a three-minute speech, apparently filmed just before dawn on Tuesday near La Carlota, the main military airbase in Caracas. “We are going to achieve liberty and democracy for Venezuela.”

Standing beside Guaidó as he spoke was Leopoldo López, an opposition politician who is meant to be under house arrest.

As the video ended, the camera moves to show a few dozen troops lined up, apparently in front of armoured troop carriers.

This morning we were awaken by news of a military uprising. There is A LOT of info on social media, not much (nearly nothing) in traditional media...
Guaidó is near a military base in Caracas, with at least 2000 armed people, both military and police (even from the secret police) who have rebelled against Maduro. While there was a planned massive demonstration for tomorrow, today surprisingly this event occurred, they are calling civilians to go there as well, as they have taken military control in the area.

The de-facto regime has been taken by surprise, apparently sending some military units who have been seized by the rebels, wearing blue ribbons.
Perhaps starting today, Maduro's regime will finally come to an end. But this is only starting...

Internet has been severly censored since early morning, this "firewall" has often failed in the past when traffic is massive (ironic isn't it?) and currently it has failed again letting censored sites open again (i do have my own countermeasures to avoid censorship).

This is ongoing news...

14  Bitcoin / Mining support / S9 owners DO NOT upgrade firmware to 2019 version, you will lose SSH access!!! on: April 13, 2019, 07:32:38 PM
From various sources i have confirmed that if you update your firmware from Bitmain to any version from 2019, you will lose SSH access. This is the same thing they tried with the S15.

Quote from: Jan Čapek
We have this confirmed from one of the users. These are clearly evil intensions as they are taking away functionality from the user

they added the signing as on S15, which itself is good if it wouldn't lock people out

Hopefully someone will find ways to overcome this, but its clear Bitmain is becoming very hostile to their customers. Beware to not upgrade any Antminer's firmware beyond 2018.


Known methods to overcome this:

Remotely via software (closed source):


Physically using:

  • TF (microSD) card:

  • Serial port:
15  Alternate cryptocurrencies / Altcoin Discussion / About stablecoin wallets needing a different coin for tx on: April 10, 2019, 02:20:40 PM
I have tried using a few stablecoins (tokens?) directly to do transactions. Unfortunately they all seem to use someone else's blockchain. This is a bit of a letdown because the tx fee needs to be paid in that coin instead. Most are erc-20 so they use "gas" (eth), and to be able to do a transaction you need to have both in your wallet...

Lets just say that is a bit user unfriendly. Sure i know how to do it, problem is others... Big problem. So what alternatives are there? Is there an actual stablecoin using its own blockchain, or some wallet that hides this from the end user and converts, say, usdc into the required gas needed to do the tx?

While we are at it i'm also confused with USDT having both bitcoin and eth variants... One type needs satoshis and the other uses "gas" like all other ERC-20s.

To make it simple: I would like to know if person A can send USDCs (or another stablecoin) to person B, each using their own wallet, not tied to coinbase or any particular exchange, and not having to use ETH as well. Impossible?
16  Economy / Speculation / That country where you can buy bitcoin cheaper than selling it... on: January 04, 2019, 05:55:51 PM
Have you ever wanted to see, Buy price lower than Sell price? Well today you can:

https://localbitcoins.com/country/VE


This is not the first time i have seen this. It doesn't usually last long, but this is the kind of distortion hyperinflation does to a country.

Insta buy low sell high?

Granted, messing with this country is not recommended. The amount of weird restrictions you will face can easily make you lose your investment, but still, don't think because the majority of tx on localbitcoins belong to this country means the Venezuelans are doing them...

What could possibly go wrong?
17  Bitcoin / Bitcoin Discussion / Here is how to produce the ₿ (Bitcoin) symbol in xorg (Linux/BSD/etc) by keypres on: December 30, 2018, 01:51:18 AM
The (Bitcoin) symbol exists officially in unicode under code U+20BF since 2017 (Unicode v10). If you have a fairly recent Unicode font, such as Google's Noto, you can already see the Bitcoin symbol and use it by copy paste or unicode input along the traditional fiat symbols like $, £, €, etc.

But wouldn't it be nice to have it at your disposal by just pressing a key? Well you can!

xmodmap to the rescue. Yup, xmodmap can assign any key you like to produce this (or any other) unicode symbol.

All you need to do is execute the xmodmap command. First take a look at your current settings with xmodmap -pke

I noticed an unassigned key, menu with shift, so in my case i used:
Code:
xmodmap -e "keycode 135 = Menu U20BF Menu"

The columns after = means what does the key do when you just press it, when you press it with shift, or when you use altgr. US keyboards might actually just need the first two, other more complex key combinations exist such as when the compose key is enabled (ie. a 4th column means altgr+shift, etc).

If you add this to your user xmodmap config file, at ~/.Xmodmap then you don't need to repeat this command every time you login:
Code:
keycode 135 = Menu U20BF Menu

If you want to use another key, or some unused key, you can use xev to find out the keycode, just run:
Code:
xev -event keyboard
and press the key to find out its keycode. In Arch and its derivatives you need to install the package xorg-xev.

And that is all, you can now just press your key and have the (Bitcoin) symbol ready for your chats or any other text typing.
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