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Author Topic: Best independent client?  (Read 3479 times)
The_Duke
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September 28, 2012, 07:30:26 AM
 #1

Now that the so-called "bitcoin foundation" is grabbing power over bitcoin, I'd like to move away from the satoshi client. (Which we should stop calling satoshi client, because satoshi has nothing to with that anymore and his concept is getting raped)

Which is the best client that is guaranteed to be independent from the bitcoin foundation? Basically I would like to "vote" against the foundation by picking an alternative client that is not under its control.

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September 28, 2012, 07:36:19 AM
 #2

Flatfly created a nice little list of alternative clients on this website. I think it should be pretty up-to-date.

Think about what you want in a client and try them out.

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September 28, 2012, 08:01:11 AM
 #3

Flatfly created a nice little list of alternative clients on this website. I think it should be pretty up-to-date.

Thanks! Smiley
Good place to start, but doesn't offer the answer to my most important reason for wanting an alternative client (see below).

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Think about what you want in a client and try them out.

I want more or less the same functionality as the original client, although a nicer GUI would be a bonus.
But much more important to me: I want as much guarantee as possible (I know there's never a 100% guarantee) that it will be made by (a) developer(s) who is/are completely independent (and if possible uninfluenced by) from the bitcoin foundation.

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September 28, 2012, 09:21:55 AM
 #4

For a network based protocol such as Bitcoin it is practically impossible for a client to be totally independent from the main software that is running the network backbone (i.e bitcoind).

i.e. Think back to the change made to the protocol on 20Feb2012. If you did not update your client software as a result of the change you could no longer talk to the network.

For MultiBit I have signed up for a lifetime membership to the Bitcoin Foundation however this does not mean I have given up any control over the MultiBit software. The people with commit access to the github code are myself, Gary Rowe, Tim Molter and Jonny Heggheim only. (Gary is also a Bitcoin Foundation member).

Also, MultiBit relies heavily on bitcoinj, XChange and XChart you would have to track the committers of those project too.


I personally think the Bitcoin Foundation is a good idea but I respect your viewpoint.

The good thing with open source code is that you can see all of the commits going into code - it is normally pretty clear what is going on. Opaque, uncommented code only comes back and bite you so developers hate it.

If you think of the phrase "the price of freedom is eternal vigilance" maybe what you should think of doing is codifying exactly what you mean by independence i.e what you expect developers to do and publish it. Make it a gold standard for what you want bitcoin software to do.

For instance, you might say:

"All unencrypted private keys should only ever be available to the installer of the software (i.e. no backdoors)."

That gives a definite measure that you can monitor any available software on. It either does it or does not, no ifs and buts.


A lot of things in Bitcoin are reputation based and you are right to be wary of anyone saying "Trust me". The good thing is that you have the tools to see what other people are doing, check that they meet any standards you publish and then give a "quality standards mark".

You might get to the position where you have a website where you declare:

"MultiBit (version x.y.z) with SHA256 hash of AParticularHash value is The_Duke approved for:
   no backdoors
   no lurking trojans
  
 however it fails on:
   no TOR support
   help files access a remote server (multibit.org) hence your IP address is logged when you access help"

OTHER people can then base their trust decisions on what you say.  Of course you need to build up a reputation backed with evidence that you are not under the influence of the Bitcoin Foundation but that is a separate issue.







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September 28, 2012, 10:54:13 AM
 #5

The bitcoin foundation has no say at all in litecoin  Cheesy

That's a good thing and proves why an alternative coin is needed.

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September 28, 2012, 11:24:29 AM
 #6

The bitcoin foundation has no say at all in litecoin  Cheesy

That's a good thing and proves why an alternative coin is needed.

That is actually worth a consideration as well. Maybe this is the time for a "bitcoin 2.0", since bitcoin 1.0 is becoming corrupted. (Yes, bold statement, but I truly think that this "foundation" has brought bitcoin closer to the traditional systems, and not in a good way.)

Not sure if litecoin would be my choice, but I'll look into alternative coins while I consider an alternative client too.

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September 29, 2012, 04:42:15 AM
 #7

Correct me if I'm wrong but I believe all clients still depend on bitcoind. That is, the essential part of verifying and storing the blockchain and communicating with other clients is still handled in all clients by this one backend codebase. I may be wrong here as I have not checked all the clients myself.

I do know that you would probably like Electrum as a light weight replacement for Bitcoin Qt but it does communicate with an Electrum server which still depends on BitcoinAbe and Bitcoind. It does have the advantage that the python code is fairly easy to browse and understand and not that long. It is managed on github as well so seeing change history is easy.

I don't think that running bitcoind is a problem but I would like to see a new verifying (preferably lightweight, pruning) bitcoin client written from scratch. I would do it but first I'd have to fully understand the current client - and I do not. I've been loathe to spend the time to fully read and understand the satoshi client code.

Instead I have been working on adding nice bits to Electrum. I would like to create an Electrum server that ran independent of bitcoind and BitcoinAbe. That's a pretty big job so I'm not about to start without much prep.

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September 29, 2012, 02:24:52 PM
 #8



I don't think that running bitcoind is a problem

Not a proble yet. Call me paranoid or just very experienced with politics, money and its influence on projects, but the whole setup of the foundation-gang seems such that it is unavoidable that parties will influence the developers of bitcoind in way that benefits thém more than the bitcoin community as a whole. We need to have independent alternative clients. Fully independent.

Quote
Instead I have been working on adding nice bits to Electrum. I would like to create an Electrum server that ran independent of bitcoind and BitcoinAbe. That's a pretty big job so I'm not about to start without much prep.

That would be an awesome move and I think it'd be my client of choice.

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September 30, 2012, 01:14:14 AM
 #9



I don't think that running bitcoind is a problem

Not a proble yet. Call me paranoid or just very experienced with politics, money and its influence on projects, but the whole setup of the foundation-gang seems such that it is unavoidable that parties will influence the developers of bitcoind in way that benefits thém more than the bitcoin community as a whole. We need to have independent alternative clients. Fully independent.
What I meant was that you can run bitcoind now and if/when changes are made later you would just not upgrade and, if needed, instead support work on some fork that you would use for any upgrades you wanted. The main thing is that a future preferred version probably still depends on the current version.

So the way you would "stage" this is to create a fork now called the non-foundation fork and then build your bitcoind from that. It would be the same thing now but you would already have a fork that is untouchable by the foundation and which could be shared to and used by another group for going in a different direction.

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September 30, 2012, 05:19:24 AM
 #10

Your reaction to the Bitcoin foundation is extraordinary and FUD.  The team that works on the main Bitcoin client has not only proved themselves capable, but they have tirelessly fought to keep the network secure and moving forward, and all for free up until now.  To wildly assume that adding formal representation to Bitcoin and compensation for its contributors is the end of Bitcoin as we know it, is quite destructive. 

Whatever it is that you think is going to happen, keep in mind that Bitcoin-Qt/bitcoind is the Bitcoin network right now.  And it will be like that for a while.  I would be scared if these guys were unwilling to continue working on the main client (say, because they need income and were unappreciated).  Regardless of who they "work for", they will continue protecting the network and adapting it to future needs. 

To contrast this to others:  I mean no offense to electrum guys (or myself, working on Armory), but what they we are doing is re-implementing the Bitcoin protocol.  We write programs to interact with the network as it exists due to the Bitcoin-Qt/bitcoind.  But that's not the same as having to evolve this complex system in order to avoid security vulnerabilities and accommodate future growth (and the electrum guys contribute to that, too, but I don't think they could do it alone).  It's a lot easier to implement an existing solution than it is to solve it from scratch.  Gavin and the rest of them are the ones solving these problems.

tl;dr -- Whether you like Gavin and his new position or not, we rely on him and the rest of that team.  All other clients are dependent on the quality of Bitcoin-Qt and bitcoind.  The next major vulnerability that is discovered will be fixed by them.  It's possible to replace them, but not without paying large salaries and risking poorer quality -- and that is exactly what you seem to be complaining about.

EDIT: in the far future when Bitcoin gets bigger, this may change.  But it will change due to corporate influence much worse than this non-profit organization run by the guys that have poured their lives into seeing Bitcoin succeed.

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September 30, 2012, 09:12:17 AM
 #11

Thanks etotheipi. You've worded it better than I ever could.

Even though many people are using bitcoin to transact large amounts of money, currently all (or at least most) of the work on the bitcoin core is done unpaid. This is simply unsustainable. As a developer, my altruism and general interest only goes so far. Any "independent" client will have the same problems.

Other blockchains such as litecoin will also have the same problem, eventually at least a few developers need to work on it full time to review code, build tests, verify etc... So all in all, I think the bitcoin foundation is good thing.

And don't forget that in the end it's the miners that have "control" over the network, they decide what gets into the block chain by choosing to run a certain version of the software. The developers can only "propose" changes. The "politicial structure" of bitcoin is not as straightforward as you make it seem The_Duke.


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October 01, 2012, 08:58:55 AM
 #12

Your reaction to the Bitcoin foundation is extraordinary and FUD. 

You mean *you think* it is. Please do not misuse your position as a developer to tell other people what they should and should not believe.

Quote
The team that works on the main Bitcoin client has not only proved themselves capable, but they have tirelessly fought to keep the network secure and moving forward, and all for free up until now. 

That's great! Good job so far. The all for free part has to be seen in the light of the early-adopting-bitcoins that most of the core developers managed to acquire, and their rise in price so far though. I estimate that a large portion of the core-devs are sitting on somewhere between thousands of dollars to millions of dollars worth of coins. And with that, they have an interest in keeping the price of bitcoin high, which might potentially be a conflict of interest with what is actually best for bitcoin. I'm not saying that conflict is there at this moment. But just the fact that it might come up in the future should make you wonder if they are the right people to be on anything that is called THE bitcoin foundation...


Quote
To wildly assume that adding formal representation to Bitcoin and compensation for its contributors is the end of Bitcoin as we know it, is quite destructive.

To wildly assume that people disagreeing with any form of formal representation of bitcoin is destructive is... quite destructive. If you think I am spreading FUD, then please refrain from FUDding right back.

Quote
Whatever it is that you think is going to happen, keep in mind that Bitcoin-Qt/bitcoind is the Bitcoin network right now. 

Which is bad and should be changed ASAP if you ask me. Why don't I see TBF fighting for thát?

Quote
And it will be like that for a while.  I would be scared if these guys were unwilling to continue working on the main client (say, because they need income and were unappreciated). 

Just you calling it "the main client" is one of these things that raised all sorts of red flags in my mind. There should not be a "main client" and TBF should actively strive to support MANY different clients, not one "main client" from one "main dev".

Quote
Regardless of who they "work for", they will continue protecting the network and adapting it to future needs.

Who guarantees that? You? Gavin himself? TBF as a whole?

Quote
To contrast this to others:  I mean no offense to electrum guys (or myself, working on Armory), but what they we are doing is re-implementing the Bitcoin protocol.  We write programs to interact with the network as it exists due to the Bitcoin-Qt/bitcoind.  But that's not the same as having to evolve this complex system in order to avoid security vulnerabilities and accommodate future growth (and the electrum guys contribute to that, too, but I don't think they could do it alone).  It's a lot easier to implement an existing solution than it is to solve it from scratch.  Gavin and the rest of them are the ones solving these problems.

They might have been the ones *so far*. But don't you agree that it would be a lot better if mutliple groups would try to find and solve these problems? Doesn't that fit a whole lot better in bitcoins decentralized spirit? And doesn't TBF's attempt at supporting only one group or even only one dev stand in sharp contrast to that?

Quote
tl;dr -- Whether you like Gavin and his new position or not, we rely on him and the rest of that team.

Which again is a very bad thing and should be changed ASAP. Bitcoin should not rely on one person or one team. And TBF is enhacing that reliance rather than trying to solve it.

So if possible (and that is what I am asking for in this thread), I would like to use a client that is as independent of TBF as possible.

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October 01, 2012, 09:14:43 AM
 #13

Your reaction to the Bitcoin foundation is extraordinary and FUD. 

You mean *you think* it is. Please do not misuse your position as a developer to tell other people what they should and should not believe.

Quote
The team that works on the main Bitcoin client has not only proved themselves capable, but they have tirelessly fought to keep the network secure and moving forward, and all for free up until now. 

That's great! Good job so far. The all for free part has to be seen in the light of the early-adopting-bitcoins that most of the core developers managed to acquire, and their rise in price so far though. I estimate that a large portion of the core-devs are sitting on somewhere between thousands of dollars to millions of dollars worth of coins. And with that, they have an interest in keeping the price of bitcoin high, which might potentially be a conflict of interest with what is actually best for bitcoin. I'm not saying that conflict is there at this moment. But just the fact that it might come up in the future should make you wonder if they are the right people to be on anything that is called THE bitcoin foundation...


Quote
To wildly assume that adding formal representation to Bitcoin and compensation for its contributors is the end of Bitcoin as we know it, is quite destructive.

To wildly assume that people disagreeing with any form of formal representation of bitcoin is destructive is... quite destructive. If you think I am spreading FUD, then please refrain from FUDding right back.

Quote
Whatever it is that you think is going to happen, keep in mind that Bitcoin-Qt/bitcoind is the Bitcoin network right now. 

Which is bad and should be changed ASAP if you ask me. Why don't I see TBF fighting for thát?

Quote
And it will be like that for a while.  I would be scared if these guys were unwilling to continue working on the main client (say, because they need income and were unappreciated). 

Just you calling it "the main client" is one of these things that raised all sorts of red flags in my mind. There should not be a "main client" and TBF should actively strive to support MANY different clients, not one "main client" from one "main dev".

Quote
Regardless of who they "work for", they will continue protecting the network and adapting it to future needs.

Who guarantees that? You? Gavin himself? TBF as a whole?

Quote
To contrast this to others:  I mean no offense to electrum guys (or myself, working on Armory), but what they we are doing is re-implementing the Bitcoin protocol.  We write programs to interact with the network as it exists due to the Bitcoin-Qt/bitcoind.  But that's not the same as having to evolve this complex system in order to avoid security vulnerabilities and accommodate future growth (and the electrum guys contribute to that, too, but I don't think they could do it alone).  It's a lot easier to implement an existing solution than it is to solve it from scratch.  Gavin and the rest of them are the ones solving these problems.

They might have been the ones *so far*. But don't you agree that it would be a lot better if mutliple groups would try to find and solve these problems? Doesn't that fit a whole lot better in bitcoins decentralized spirit? And doesn't TBF's attempt at supporting only one group or even only one dev stand in sharp contrast to that?

Quote
tl;dr -- Whether you like Gavin and his new position or not, we rely on him and the rest of that team.

Which again is a very bad thing and should be changed ASAP. Bitcoin should not rely on one person or one team. And TBF is enhacing that reliance rather than trying to solve it.

So if possible (and that is what I am asking for in this thread), I would like to use a client that is as independent of TBF as possible.

I couldn't of said it better myself. I will restate that this is money we are dealing with. Not an operating system, not a game but actual money. We need to be very cautious, period, if we want this thing to outlive us.
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October 01, 2012, 10:31:57 AM
 #14

hint, hint, cbitcoin is ready to be used... it's a library not a client though.
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October 01, 2012, 11:46:22 AM
 #15

Not sure how mature it is, but I believe Ufasoft Coin is an alternative full node client. Unfortunately, the gui is still quite basic, and it hasn't received much attention lately, but it might be worth checking out.

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October 01, 2012, 12:15:09 PM
 #16

hint, hint, cbitcoin is ready to be used... it's a library not a client though.
Is it? I've checked in there a few times and thought it was still very early and not far enough along. Is there any info on how it compares to bitcoind and whether it saves space or can do SPV?

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October 01, 2012, 05:01:17 PM
 #17

I'm not arguing against having competition in the world of Bitcoin.  What I'm arguing is that it doesn't exist yet, and if it does, it's not going to happen for free.  And when it does, it will be with much worse intentions than this non-profit made up of people who actually care about Bitcoin.  

The complexity of the protocol and securing the fully-functioning network requires some serious devotion and skill.  The current devs have been doing this for years, for free.  Yes, maybe they made some money from BTC savings.  A lot of people did.  But no one [should] doubt their devotion to the success of Bitcoin, regardless of who they are working for or how much money they made.  These guys are serious nerds, and seriously devoted.   There's never been a reason to doubt that.  Except that you have, in an extraordinary and insulting fashion.  As if devs getting compensated for their time turns them into bloodlusting, selfish scammers.

Because of the complexity of the system, there's no way for competition to exist without salaries.  When it does, it will probably be supported by a profit-motivated "corporate overlord".  We should be happy that the first formal face to the outside world is a non-profit made up of these guys.  Because any other company trying to dive in like this will probably be profit-motivated, and made up mostly of people who don't actually care about Bitcoin.

The reason I was so straightforward in my previous message is because you've offered no evidence that the high degree of credibility developed by Gavin&friends over the years is in question.  Everyone on the Bitcoin Foundation has been contributing to Bitcoin in some way, for a long time.  They've promoted it, defended it, secured it, developed it, and tried to expand it.  But none of this matters to you.  You see that someone gets compensated for their time, and nothing good can follow.

All I can say is, in order for Bitcoin to succeed in the long run, something like the Bitcoin Foundation is necessary:  without it, "Silk Road" will remain the public face of Bitcoin, and it will never expand.  And if some organization is going to come about to try to organize, promote, and maintain the network, we should be damned happy it is these guys.


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October 01, 2012, 07:13:57 PM
 #18

hint, hint, cbitcoin is ready to be used... it's a library not a client though.
Is it? I've checked in there a few times and thought it was still very early and not far enough along. Is there any info on how it compares to bitcoind and whether it saves space or can do SPV?

Well that's just what I've been picking up when the thread popped up. There was something about it being fully or at least sufficiently featured by now in the last update. I don't know any specifics.
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October 02, 2012, 08:28:05 AM
 #19

I'm not arguing against having competition in the world of Bitcoin.  What I'm arguing is that it doesn't exist yet, and if it does, it's not going to happen for free.

First of all, I doubt that it wouldn't happen for free. But for now, let's take your statement for truth.
I also agree with you that serious competition does not exist yet. I think most people will agree that it would be good (and in the spirit of bitcoin) to have multiple fully functioning clients to choose from.
If that is the case, then it should be one of TBF's missions to support this, perhaps even financially.
Instead, they support only ONE dev (or team), working on ONE client, which is exactly the ópposite of the above. They give this one client an even bigger lead over (possible) others. This dev that is going to get financial support is even on the board of TBF. Do you think it is likely that if another client stands up that is just as good as bitcoind or even better, that this board will decide to give less money to themselves and more to others? Even if that'd mean their own work might be overshadowed?

Quote
And when it does, it will be with much worse intentions than this non-profit made up of people who actually care about Bitcoin.

That is just FUD. You speak of me providing no evidence to say my arguments are moot, and then come up with this.

Quote
The complexity of the protocol and securing the fully-functioning network requires some serious devotion and skill.  The current devs have been doing this for years, for free.

So it seems serious devotion and skill can come for free. That at least, has been proven so far. (I would even go as far as stating that you will find the most devotion, and possibly skill as well, in many of the non-corporate projects out there)
Sidenote though: I highly doubt that if Gavin had not made a serious load of bitcoins in the progress he would have continued for so long. Just my opinion of course.

Quote
Yes, maybe they made some money from BTC savings.

Not some. Tons.

Quote
But no one [should] doubt their devotion to the success of Bitcoin, regardless of who they are working for or how much money they made.

Why not? Why not at least doubt their motives for this devotion? As long as what is good for bitcoin is also good for Gavin('s income), I am sure he will be really devoted. But I doubt that when the time comes that what is good for bitcoin is bad for Gavin('s income) he will still be so devoted to do the right thing for bitcoin. Perhaps I'm wrong, and if that time comes and Gavin proves me wrong I will be the first to applaud him for it.

Now, when Gavin is just one developer of many, maybe even supported by an organisation that also supports many others, that wouldn't worry me at all. Gavin would just be able to do his own thing and others would pick up where he left off, or take an alternative path.
But when Gavin is THE dev, making THE client, paid for by THE foundation (which is indirectly in the hands of THE big corporations in the market by then, mark my words), that becomes a scary thing.

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These guys are serious nerds, and seriously devoted.   There's never been a reason to doubt that.

Until now.

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Except that you have, in an extraordinary and insulting fashion.

You missed all the other threads? Don't pretend it's just one guy not liking things, it's many.
 Insulting fashion? I have my doubts over the motives behind TBF and I voice them. If you think that is insulting, fine. I won't even say it's insulting that you think I am insulting! Wink

Quote
As if devs getting compensated for their time turns them into bloodlusting, selfish scammers.

I am a dev, both for a living (1) where I work on safety-critical products that millions of people use every day, and as part of two not-for-profit bodies (2). I get paid for (1), not for (2), even though (2) takes up more of my time than (1). I'm not a bloodlusting, selfish scammer, and if you pretend I said that Gavin was, then you're just putting words into my mouth that I did not say. But I'm also not going to all of a sudden demand that I get paid for (2). If I don't like the unpaid work anymore, I will go do something else. And doing so would not diminish my work I've done on those projects over the past 8 years.

But as soon as a dev starts asking for money for things he was always devoted to, it sets off alarm bells. It tells me (and I know you disagree, which is fine) that this dev has lost some of his devotion and/or the fun in what he was doing. And my advise to such a developer would not be to start asking for money, but to go do something else.

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Because of the complexity of the system, there's no way for competition to exist without salaries.

I seriously doubt that. I see brilliant programmers committing their work to NFP projects every day, in fields where their free software competes with others that are commercially exploited and their work is just as good.
But to come back to the original point: even IF what you say is true, then all the more reason for TBF to support multiple groups of devs, to actively strive to have competition, instead of trying to kill it off by picking one dev and one client.

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When it does, it will probably be supported by a profit-motivated "corporate overlord".

At least you went from "will be" to "will probably be", but it's still FUD.

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We should be happy that the first formal face to the outside world is a non-profit

Yup, very happy about that! Smiley

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made up of these guys.

Much less excited about that.  Undecided

There should be no dev's on the board. If there HAVE to be devs on the board, it should be at a later stage, and devs from multiple full clients. It could pay devs, but only if it was paying multiple devs in multiple groups developing multiple clients.
It should also not have people from MtGox, Bitinstant etc, nor should it be collecting funds from big corporations. They are your overlords, remember?

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Because any other company trying to dive in like this will probably be profit-motivated, and made up mostly of people who don't actually care about Bitcoin.

And what we have now, is a bunch of profit oriented people hiding behind the not-for-profit name. Seen MtGox's yearly reports yet? Plenty of profit there. Gavin himself is going to take money from this organisation, so that's profit for him right there. I don't think Bitinstant's CEO is doing it for free either.
I am not saying they are evil and will try to harm bitcoin from the start. I'm not even sayiong that working for profit is bad, I do so myself because having money makes life a lot easier. I'm saying that I am very unsure if they will do the right thing for bitcoin when a time comes where it will conflict with their own (financial) interests. They have too much investment into bitcoin. Into the *financial* aspects of bitcoin that is.

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The reason I was so straightforward in my previous message is because you've offered no evidence that the high degree of credibility developed by Gavin&friends over the years is in question.

If I could provide that evidence, it would already be too late. I fear this evidence will come sooner or later. Not necessary from Gavin himself, but from the way TBF is set up.  

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Everyone on the Bitcoin Foundation has been contributing to Bitcoin in some way, for a long time.  They've promoted it, defended it, secured it, developed it, and tried to expand it.  But none of this matters to you.  You see that someone gets compensated for their time, and nothing good can follow.

If you read my posts, you will see that the compensation part is just one of my issues with TBF and not even the major one. It is a large part of their mission statement and way TBF has been set up that I disagree with.

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All I can say is, in order for Bitcoin to succeed in the long run, something like the Bitcoin Foundation is necessary:

No, not something like TBF as we see it now. We can do without that.

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without it, "Silk Road" will remain the public face of Bitcoin, and it will never expand.  And if some organization is going to come about to try to organize, promote, and maintain the network, we should be damned happy

I mildly agree with that.

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it is these guys.

But not with that. And not in the way these guys have set it up. But that much was clear I think Tongue

Now, how about we go back on topic? As a bitcoin user, I would like to have a client that is as independent as it can get from TBF, because I do not trust TBF (which you might disagree with, but that is off-topic).
Which projects should I follow and which clients can I forget about?


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Donate to the BitKitty Foundation instead! -> 1Fd4yLneGmxRHnPi6WCMC2hAMzaWvDePF9 <-
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October 02, 2012, 08:38:38 AM
 #20

I'm not arguing against having competition in the world of Bitcoin.  What I'm arguing is that it doesn't exist yet, and if it does, it's not going to happen for free.  And when it does, it will be with much worse intentions than this non-profit made up of people who actually care about Bitcoin.  

The complexity of the protocol and securing the fully-functioning network requires some serious devotion and skill.  The current devs have been doing this for years, for free.  Yes, maybe they made some money from BTC savings.  A lot of people did.  But no one [should] doubt their devotion to the success of Bitcoin, regardless of who they are working for or how much money they made.  These guys are serious nerds, and seriously devoted.   There's never been a reason to doubt that.  Except that you have, in an extraordinary and insulting fashion.  As if devs getting compensated for their time turns them into bloodlusting, selfish scammers.

Because of the complexity of the system, there's no way for competition to exist without salaries.  When it does, it will probably be supported by a profit-motivated "corporate overlord".  We should be happy that the first formal face to the outside world is a non-profit made up of these guys.  Because any other company trying to dive in like this will probably be profit-motivated, and made up mostly of people who don't actually care about Bitcoin.

The reason I was so straightforward in my previous message is because you've offered no evidence that the high degree of credibility developed by Gavin&friends over the years is in question.  Everyone on the Bitcoin Foundation has been contributing to Bitcoin in some way, for a long time.  They've promoted it, defended it, secured it, developed it, and tried to expand it.  But none of this matters to you.  You see that someone gets compensated for their time, and nothing good can follow.

All I can say is, in order for Bitcoin to succeed in the long run, something like the Bitcoin Foundation is necessary:  without it, "Silk Road" will remain the public face of Bitcoin, and it will never expand.  And if some organization is going to come about to try to organize, promote, and maintain the network, we should be damned happy it is these guys.

Wow, this is very well put. Thank you!
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