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721  Other / Meta / Re: Moderators of the Russian branch are accomplices to WEX scammers on: October 07, 2018, 10:57:11 AM
Here are the posts deleted today:
https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=5045430.0

If any are not off-topic/insubstantial, make a case as to why.
722  Other / Serious discussion / Re: Would a crypto-based universal basic income actually work? on: October 06, 2018, 01:05:44 PM
No, doing UBI via cryptocurrency is just a bad idea. To start with, UBI fundamentally needs to be centralized because a decentralized system can't determine who the unique humans are. You need to either rely on existing centralized government databases (which may also be flawed/corrupted...) or you need your own centralized testing personnel/devices.

Second, a decentralized cryptocurrency can only make money for "the system" through very blunt/stupid methods such as inflation and transaction fees, and this doesn't scale much. People won't use a cryptocurrency that's going to inflate a lot: that'd be stupid, and people aren't that stupid. That's why you don't usually see governments try to fund themselves entirely through inflation, and when they do, it quickly leads to hyperinflation from people increasingly+exponentially refusing to use that unreliable money. If you had a cryptocurrency that had significant stand-alone merit prompting people to use it (eg. BTC, ETH, XMR when they were first created, not new clones), then maybe you could get away with taking a 0.1-1.0% inflation tax and doing something with it, but you're not going to achieve UBI with that. UBI requires some other form of taxation, probably one requiring violence via a state. (Voluntary taxation communities almost always fail, look at various attempted communes such as eg. Kibbutzim in Israel.)

Looking at Manna as an example, their whole UBI aspect relies on a centralized nonprofit; what then is even the point of the cryptocurrency aspect? What value does it add on top of just setting up some BTC-accepting charity that would send donated funds to all verified individuals equally?

IMO a better idea would be to compete with Patreon: subsidize non-traditional work so that people can escape the 9-to-5 nonsense. But even then, I suspect that creating a new cryptocurrency would be counter-productive; you don't need to shoe-horn a new coin into every little thing.
723  Other / Politics & Society / Re: 2018 USA Mid Terms! Red or Blue Waves?!? on: October 06, 2018, 06:52:56 AM
My desired result is for the Democrats to win the house by 1 seat or for there to be a dead tie, and for the Republicans to keep the Senate by as much as possible. That should ensure that nothing gets done, which is the best thing for the government to do. (I will get a certain sense of satisfaction if the Republicans win overwhelmingly, since I really dislike the Democrats, but the Republicans will also do plenty of harm if given the opportunity.)

My predicted result is that the Republicans will only barely retain the Senate and will lose the House by a few dozen seats. I think that both sides will be disappointed at their performance, but it will be a moderate blue wave. I sense that most people are only slightly enthusiastic about the economy, and are worried about future tariffs and especially the future of healthcare.

If either side wins big, there will be accusations of foreign interference. (And indeed, if any foreign power if capable of interfering with the election, now would be a great time, since it'd create maximal chaos.)
724  Economy / Auctions / Advertise on this forum - Round 257 on: October 06, 2018, 12:41:53 AM
The forum sells ad space in the area beneath the first post of every topic page. This income is used primarily to cover hosting costs and to pay moderators for their work (there are many moderators, so each moderator gets only a small amount -- moderators should be seen as volunteers, not employees). Any leftover amount is typically either saved for future expenses or otherwise reinvested into the forum or the ecosystem.

Ads are allowed to contain any non-annoying HTML/CSS style. No images, JavaScript, or animation. Ads must appear 3 or fewer lines tall in my browser (Firefox, 900px wide). Ad text may not contain lies, misrepresentation, or inappropriate language. Ads may not link directly to any NSFW page. No ICOs[1], banks, funds, or anything else that a person can be said to "invest" in; I may very rarely make exceptions if you convince me that you are ultra legit, but don't count on it. Ads may be rejected for other reasons, and I may remove ads even after they are accepted.

There are 10 total ad slots which are randomly rotated. So one ad slot has a one in ten chance of appearing. Nine of the slots are for sale here. Ads appear only on topic pages with more than one post, and only for people using the default theme.

Duration

- Your ads are guaranteed to be up for at least 7 days.
- I usually try to keep ads up for no more than 8 or 9 days.
- Sometimes ads might be up for longer, but hopefully no longer than 12 days. Even if past rounds sometimes lasted for long periods of time, you should not rely on this for your ads.

Stats

Exact historical impression counts per slot:
https://bitcointalk.org/adrotate.php?adstats

Info about the current ad slots:
https://bitcointalk.org/adrotate.php?adinfo

Ad blocking

Hero/Legendary members, Donators, VIPs, and moderators have the ability to disable ads. I don't expect many people to use this option. These people don't increase the impression stats for your ads.

I try to bypass Adblock Plus filters as much as possible, though this is not guaranteed. It is difficult or impossible for ABP filters to block the ad space itself without blocking posts. However, filters can match against the URLs in your links, your CSS classes and style attributes, and the HTML structure of your ads.

To prevent matches against URLs: I have some JavaScript which fixes links blocked by ABP. You must tell me if you want this for your ads. When someone with ABP and JavaScript enabled views your ads, your links are changed to a special randomized bitcointalk.org URL which redirects to your site when visited. People without ABP are unaffected, even if they don't have JavaScript enabled. The downsides are:
- ABP users will see the redirection link when they hover over the link, even if they disable ABP for the forum.
- Getting referral stats might become even more difficult.
- Some users might get a warning when redirecting from https to http.

To prevent matching on CSS classes/styles: Don't use inline CSS. I can give your ad a CSS class that is randomized on each pageload, but you must request this.

To prevent matching against your HTML structure: Use only one <a> and no other tags if possible. If your ads get blocked because of matching done on something inside of your ad, you are responsible for noticing this and giving me new ad HTML.

Designing ads

Make sure that your ads look good when you download and edit this test page:
https://bitcointalk.org/ad_test.html
Also read the comments in that file.

Images are not allowed no matter how they are created (CSS, SVG, or data URI). Occasionally I will make an exception for small logos and such, but you must get pre-approval from me first.

The maximum size of any one ad is 51200 bytes.

I will send you more detailed styling rules if you win slots in this auction (or upon request).

Auction rules

You must be at least a Jr Member to bid. If you are not a Jr Member and you really want to bid, you should PM me first. Tell me in the PM what you're going to advertise. You might be required to pay some amount in advance. Everyone else: Please quickly PM newbies who try to bid here to warn them against impersonation scammers.

If you have never purchased forum ad space before, and it is not blatantly obvious what you're going to advertise, say what you're going to advertise in your first bid, or tell me in a PM.

Post your bids in this thread. Prices must be stated in BTC per slot. You must state the maximum number of slots you want. When the auction ends, the highest bidders will have their slots filled until all nine slots are filled.

So if someone bids for 9 slots @ 5 BTC and this is the highest bid, then he'll get all 9 slots. If the two highest bids are 9 slots @ 4 BTC and 1 slot @ 5 BTC, then the first person will get 8 slots and the second person will get 1 slot.

The notation "2 @ 5" means 2 slots for 5 BTC each. Not 2 slots for 5 BTC total.

- When you post a bid, the bids in your previous posts are considered to be automatically canceled. You can put multiple bids in one post, however.
- All bid prices must be evenly divisible by 0.02.
- The bidding starts at 0.02.
- I will end the auction at an arbitrary time. Unless I say otherwise, I typically try to end auctions within a few days of 10 days from the time of this post, but unexpected circumstances may sometimes force me to end the auction anytime between 4 and 22 days from the start. I have a small bias toward ending auctions on Fridays, Sundays, and Mondays.
- If two people bid at the same price, the person who bid first will have his slots filled first.
- Bids are considered invalid and will be ignored if they do not specify both a price and a max quantity, or if they could not possibly win any slots

If these rules are confusing, look at some of the past forum ad auctions to see how it's done.

I reserve the right to reject bids, even days after the bid is made.

You must pay for your slots within 24 hours of receiving the payment address. Otherwise your slots may be sold to someone else, and I might even give you a negative trust rating. I will send you the payment information via forum PM from this account ("theymos", user ID 35) after announcing the auction results in this thread. You might receive false payment information from scammers pretending to be me. They might even have somewhat similar usernames. Be careful.

[1]: For the purposes of forum ads, an ICO is any token, altcoin, or other altcoin-like thing which meets any of the following criteria: it is primarily run/backed by a company; it is substantially, fundamentally centralized in either operation or coin distribution; or it is not yet possible for two unprivileged users of the system to send coins directly to each other in a P2P way. The intention here is to allow community efforts to advertise things like Litecoin, but not to allow ICO funding, even when the ICO is disguised in various ways.
725  Economy / Auctions / Re: Advertise on this forum - Round 256 on: October 06, 2018, 12:36:28 AM
1 @ 0.08     

I thought about this for some time, but in the end I think that it's too close to an ICO-like-thing because you are at the moment singularly dealing with / talking about KamaCoins, a clear ICO which definitely wouldn't be allowed to advertise either its token sale or its bounty. Your TOKPIE platform would on its own probably be OK.

Auction ended, final result:
Slots BTC/Slot Person
4 0.10 ChipMixer
1 0.08 leonArdo@margin
1 0.06 ni23457
3 0.06 lightlord
726  Other / Meta / Re: Question about forum finances (again :P) on: October 04, 2018, 11:46:58 PM
I'm not ready to post more hard numbers yet.

I think 2018 will have the greatest income than last year, even the btc today was not good as in the 2017.

No, I think that gross income will be roughly halved: the two main factors for this are my ban on ICO forum ads and a general reduction in traffic after the bubble popped (as has happened after previous bubbles). While non-ad user payments have become somewhat significant (whereas they were barely worth mentioning in 2017), keep in mind that both evil fees and copper member fees are (intentionally) tiny.

(There's no need to be concerned about this whatsoever, BTW. The forum's purpose is not to make money, there are plenty of reserves, and it would be easy to increase income if necessary.)
727  Other / Politics & Society / Re: Supreme Court pick Brett Kavanaugh on: October 04, 2018, 03:28:57 AM
As things stand right now, it seems to me that all Republicans + Joe Manchin will vote to confirm him. Manchin and Flake have both been saying pretty pro-Kavanaugh things, and nobody in-the-know seems worried about Collins and Murkowski.
728  Other / Meta / Re: Captcha bypass on: October 04, 2018, 03:12:15 AM
The only added risk is that if your computer is compromised, they could get the link with the code. He mentioned owning that code makes bruteforcing the pass easier. Anyone has the math?

If your password is decent and unique to bitcointalk.org, then brute-forcing isn't going to be possible via the Internet. I can't imagine anyone being able to do more than a few hundred attempts per second, which is far slower than if you had the password hash.

The main reason why the login captcha is necessary at all is that whenever some site's username/password database is leaked anywhere on the Internet, hackers would come and try all of those logins here, grabbing a few accounts from people who shared passwords, and sometimes slowing down the forum from the rapid barrage of login attempts. These codes are sufficient for preventing that on any large scale. For individual users, the main thing is to not share passwords, not even with minor variations between sites.
729  Other / Meta / Captcha bypass on: October 03, 2018, 01:49:32 AM
You can now bypass the login CAPTCHA by bookmarking the link generated for you here: https://bitcointalk.org/captcha_code.php

If it causes problems, I might restrict it to Jr Members and above or something, but currently anyone can do it.
730  Other / Politics & Society / Re: The technological singularity on: October 02, 2018, 10:53:46 PM
I read Kurzweil's book several years ago, and it was really stupid. It's the extrapolation fallacy in book form:

He seems to believe that progress just happens regardless of everything else. In reality, progress happens because people make it happen, and it can be stopped if we hit a wall in research or if society changes to no longer allow for effective/useful scientific progress.

If human-level AI is created on traditional computing systems, then a singularity-like explosion of technology seems likely. There are existential risks there, but also potentially ~infinite benefit. But I'm not convinced that we're close to human-level AI. Deep neural networks can do some impressive things, but they don't actually think or plan: they're like a very effective form of intuition. I don't think that we will find human-level AI at the end of that road. In the worst-case scenario we should eventually be able to completely map out the human brain and simulate it on a computer, but that'll be many decades into the future at least.

Many leftists have a habit of thinking that since progress continues continuously and exponentially, we should just assume post-scarcity any day now. Which is exactly how you damage society and the economy so badly that you stop all progress completely...
731  Other / Meta / Re: [MERIT][NSFN] We're destroying more merits than we're sending. Like, way more. on: October 02, 2018, 09:17:54 PM
16,224 sMerit is held by autobanned users (including the initial sMerit).

732  Other / Meta / Re: Account with special symbol available? on: October 02, 2018, 08:11:13 AM
The rules used to be looser, but a year or two ago I tightened them. Now IIRC only low ASCII is allowed, and you need at least one letter. Even prior to the current username restrictions, the username was interpreted as ISO-8859-1, so Unicode wasn't allowed. Unicode is allowed in display names, but most people can't change their display names.
733  Other / Meta / Re: Rant on Tor on: September 30, 2018, 02:07:44 AM
People using Tor have something to hide, we don't want their kind on this forum.

I guess you'd ban Satoshi, then? Feel free to publish your browser history if you "have nothing to hide".

Privacy is good. Tor's approach to it is bad, or at least very incomplete.
734  Other / Meta / Rant on Tor on: September 30, 2018, 01:48:12 AM
I don't like CloudFlare. I consider it quite likely to be some sort of government-run honeypot; or if it isn't already, then it could be easily transformed into one. Far too much of the Internet goes through CloudFlare.

However, I was just reading a couple of things from the Tor project ([1], [2]) which really annoyed me. The blame for Tor getting blocked everywhere belongs squarely at the feet of the Tor project for their failure to come up with any anti-DDoS solution whatsoever. Large sites cannot function by accepting connections from everyone without any possibility of rate-limiting. Probably this is a core flaw in the design of the Internet itself, but for now we have to live with it. If you say "well, the sites should just accept every Tor connection and treat them all as perfectly-good traffic", then you're actually saying "the sites should spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on handling every attacker as if it was legitimate". It's insane, and it's not going to happen.

There are very obvious ways of handling this while also preserving privacy. One idea is CloudFlare's Privacy Pass, which Tor categorically rejected for no good reason. (Note: I am not so confident in Privacy Pass's exact blind signature scheme, though the Tor people didn't actually use that as their reason for rejecting it. And it is a good idea at its heart.) You could extend the Tor protocol to give hidden services a way of requiring a proof-of-work from the client before handing the connection off to the application, and then sites could at least safely offer a hidden service option to Tor users. You could even think about extending TCP to require a client proof-of-work, which would address the DDoS issue beyond Tor. But instead Tor has done nothing.

TBH, Tor's unwillingness to handle this, as well as the overall weakness of Tor's anonymity when compared to the cutting edge in academic research, makes me think that Tor may be infiltrated by anti-privacy interests.
735  Other / Meta / Re: Endless CAPTCHA on: September 30, 2018, 01:44:53 AM
Since I don't use Tor for bitcointalk.org, please post for the next few days whether things are getting better or worse on this front, or staying the same. The increase in captchas may be a temporary condition. I will continue to investigate options.
736  Other / Meta / Re: Endless CAPTCHA on: September 29, 2018, 09:18:49 PM
I just now enabled Cloudflare's "onion routing", which is supposed to fix that, though I have some concerns about it, so we'll see how it goes.

Edit: It doesn't seem to actually be doing anything yet, though. Maybe it takes some time to come into effect, or maybe there's some other issue.
737  Economy / Economics / Re: Asians are the most bitcoin holders in the world. on: September 29, 2018, 01:17:37 AM
Yes we all know that Bitcoin originated in the continent of Asia.
Do we really know that?  Frankly, I think the name Satoshi Nakamoto is a red herring, designed to divert people's attention from the fact that it was a US government agency that created bitcoin.

Have you read any of Satoshi's posts here?  Perfect-fucking-English.  Now tell me again how you think bitcoin was born in Asia.

Maybe Theymos or some other bitcoin-OG could set me straight on this, but I think OP's assertion is ludicrous.

Right, he never spoke a word of Japanese. IIRC the first Japanese translation for the software was submitted while Satoshi was still around, but by someone else. We don't even know which kanji should be used to write his name.

My suspicion has always been that Satoshi was just an ordinary guy. He needed to be smart, but not a genius. Some random high school math teacher working on it as a hobby on the side, for example. I don't particularly believe that Satoshi is anyone notable inside or outside of Bitcoin. (Also see my post here.)

I'd kind of like to believe that Satoshi was the NSA or whatever, since that would imply an intelligent conspiracy. I'd feel much better about the world if I believed that there were intelligent, driven conspiracies in places of power, even if they weren't benevolent. But in reality I think that we live in a world driven by inertia, stupidity, short-term greed, and lack of vision; nobody is pulling strings to see any grand plans fulfilled. So I don't consider it likely.
738  Other / Politics & Society / Re: Supreme Court pick Brett Kavanaugh on: September 29, 2018, 12:54:22 AM
I'm a Libertarian, thus my love for decentralization and cryptos, I am with you on Kavanaugh BUT after watching the brutal and vile process the Dems put this man through, I'm going to ditch voting for Libertarians this election cycle and vote Republican.  Sick and tired of the drama, the media and their siding with Democrats is so freaking obvious and it makes me puke.  Perhaps the day will come when Republicans will agree to meet Libertarians in the middle on many issues (not all), many of us Libertarians will start supporting the Republican party.

I've also been feeling that way on an intuitive level. I don't like the Republicans, but I can't stand the Democrats. A decade ago they used to at least pay lip service to a few good things like opposition to war and some individual freedoms. I actually became a libertarian from the left. But now they're very pro-war and maybe as bad on free speech etc. as the Republicans due to their focus on identity politics. However, I have to keep reminding myself that the Republicans will do plenty of harm if they gain a lot of power, and in fact it may be an improvement if the Democrats get the House (but not the Senate) in the upcoming election because it'll make it harder for anything at all to get done. Even though it'll be absolute hell to have to listen to a Democratic Speaker for 2+ years...

If the Democrats gain both the House and the Senate in the upcoming election, then I'm calling it right now: Trump will get so amazingly frustrated that he will do something massively stupid/illegal and end up getting impeached (via the support of many Republicans). I'm not sure whether this would be good from a libertarian perspective.

Kavanaugh is better than anyone who a Democrat would nominate, so that's one good thing, though it's still disappointing. I don't even really trust him on the 2nd amendment -- probably he would support all sorts of incremental regulations. Though maybe his experience with his nomination will make him more radical, which might be interesting.
739  Other / Meta / Re: 1 merit source in every Local Boards, Is it Possible? on: September 29, 2018, 12:35:55 AM
Only a few local sections don't have sources now.
740  Other / Meta / Re: Legendary with Copper Memberships? on: September 27, 2018, 10:06:32 PM
People now - "No way I'm paying $65,000 for a Donator membership!"

People in 10 years - "No way I'm paying $65,000 for a Copper membership!"

Unlike the Donator/VIP memberships, I do plan on reducing the cost of copper membership if the price rises a lot, so that shouldn't happen. (Though the membership price doesn't float automatically.)
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