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Author Topic: 2012-12-1 LeMonde.fr - Avec Bitcoin, payer et vendre sans les banques  (Read 2872 times)
glub0x
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December 02, 2012, 12:05:22 AM
Last edit: December 02, 2012, 02:40:00 PM by glub0x
 #1

Avec Bitcoin, payer et vendre sans les banques
-With Bitcoin, pay and sell without banks.-


http://www.lemonde.fr/sciences/article/2012/11/29/payer-et-vendre-sans-les-banques_1798066_1650684.html

LeMonde.fr: Mainstream french information website.  
No idea if they mention it in the news paper version.




[EDIT] : Added the translation, it's my first one so please be indulgent

Quote
With Bitcoin, pay and sell without banks

Internet continues to shake the foundation of well established sectors: music, cinema, business, press. And now banks! A technology, Bitcoin, will celebrate its fourth anniversary in january 2013. It promises to create a network of transactions featuring decentralization, anonymity, and fees less.

Rather the oposite of the actuals money transfer, based on banks, identified transactions and fees. Moreover, as usual in those technology, a political vision is palpable: the actual monetary system, made of banks monopolys, lead us to financial crisis.

In fact, bitcoin, invented by Satoshi Nakamoto (a pseudonym), is both a virtual currency (but convertible against $ and €...) and an exchange protocol secured in the way BitTorrent is, wich allows p2p files exchange.

Arround 200 000 transactions have already been registered thanks to 15 000 computers on the network. Nearly one thousand websites uses bitcoins as donations or as a payment. The price of bitcoin peaked at 30 dollars (23 euros) in june 2011, felt down at 2 dollars, five month later, before going back today arround ten dollars (priced are recorded on bitcoincharts.com). Nothing very impressive compared to worldwide exchanges for fiat or financials products.



Yet , European Central Bank (BCE) get intrested into bitcoin in a report about virtual currency published in october. It describes bitcoin as «the virtual currency with the biggest sucess», «in competition with dollar or euro» and «likewise conventional currency» . Bitcoin differs from other kinds of virtual currency like «credits», used to progress in a video game that you win by playing or buy (and sometimes echange back).

The Facebook network, developed this kind of system. But, everytime, a central authority controls the exchanges. With Bitcoin, all the nodes of the network are: accountant [google traduction : Book depository accounts ?? allusion to the blockchain?], auditors, money issuers, buyers and sellers

How does this network works? Every transaction between two users are n fact made with two different electronic adresses in the same way e-mail works. Except that a user can choose a different adress for each payment protecting his anonymity. A group of informations linked to this transaction is electronically signed with a double key encryption. This way, the network can check the authenticity of the transaction. Thanks to the content of the file, it is also possible to ensure that the bitcoins of the transaction exists in the public account book [allusion to the blockchain], spread on the network



The key step consist of writing this transaction in this book. It goes through solving a mathematical challenges given to the computers, the winner, kind of temporary central  banker, will get the privilege to write the entry. It is the hashing phase, that is to say the  process of a large file into a digital fingerprint shorter and unique.  The computers [of the network] accepts the new transaction and add a number before hashing everything.

The goal is to find the number that gives a particular digital fingerprint (loads of zeros at start). Once this number has been found, other nodes can easily check that it is the right one. The transaction is then forever linked to the chain of all the others transactions; any modification would change the global digital fingerprint.

If someone want to fraud the system, he would try to pay two times with the same money very quickly (less than 10 minutes), one and only one of the transaction would be accepted by the network - the other one would stay oprhan because they have different digital fingerprint.
The computer that solves the challenge get 50 bitcoins. To avoid Inflation, this reward is divided by two regulary, probably before the end of 2012. The quantity of bitcoins is then limited to 21 millions, but they are divisible to one hundred millionth, wich leaves room... The difficulty of the challenge increase with the computing power.

The network has had its up and downs. Websites providing bitcoins related services have been attacked and the bitcoins depositry stolen. «the weakness is not related to the protocol on itself», said Pierre Noizat, who just launch Paymium, a payment company featuring true currency using the bitcoin network. The BCE also note the possibility of money laundering thanks to this anonymous service. But cash also have this weakness. Big players like Wikipedia refuse this kind of donations. Others like Wordpress accept it. Recently, Adi Shamir et Dorit Ron from the Weizmann institut, Israël, analyse the account book and show that 80% of the bitcoins do not move. «In november, huges sell-off have started, thirty thousands worth of dollars have been exchanged», welcomes Jon Holmquist, who works for Coinabul, wich converts bitcoins to gold.

Pierre Noizat, also autor of a pedagogic book about this currency (Bitcoin, monnaie libre, lulu. com, 160 p., 26,16 €), put loads of faith in the potential of this technology as a transaction network. His system Paytunia is a equivalent to credit card (in real money) or to a mobile payment sustem without physical contacts, but he uses Bitcoin to validate transactions wich is cheaper. Moreover the owner handle his identity so he can stay anonymous.

This system is easy to deploy to the merchants, who do not need to install any terminal or software. They just need to communicate an adress. A mobile phone can then take a picture of this adress and recognize it says Pierre Noizat. He assure to have thousands of users. «There is a general trend of questioning hierarchical systems in favor of horizontal systems. Bitcoin will need time to be mainstream but 2013 can be the turn-out»

In case of succes, the BCE, says they will reevaluate the risks that are considered as high today.

David Larousserie


Donation: 1AoUUSWWuWNBGKMfkf5pvcj9JeGE6Z7Zia

The cost of mediation increases transaction costs, limiting the
minimum practical transaction size and cutting off the possibility for small casual transactions

Satoshi Nakamoto : https://bitcoin.org/bitcoin.pdf
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kiba
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December 02, 2012, 02:58:14 AM
 #2

Any translation from moonspeak?

grondilu
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December 02, 2012, 05:00:53 AM
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Comments on this article are quite surprising.

Basically they all complain that the article is too difficult to understand.  Then they say they went to the french Wikipedia and still they did not understand.

Since I am the main author of the french Wikipedia article, I don't think this article is difficult to understand.  Rather, I suspect that people who read "lemonde.fr" are just not very smart.
HorseRider
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December 02, 2012, 09:17:27 AM
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Comments on this article are quite surprising.

Basically they all complain that the article is too difficult to understand.  Then they say they went to the french Wikipedia and still they did not understand.

Since I am the main author of the french Wikipedia article, I don't think this article is difficult to understand.  Rather, I suspect that people who read "lemonde.fr" are just not very smart.

then, please be super smart to let not-that-smart peole understood. that is what we habe been trying.

16SvwJtQET7mkHZFFbJpgPaDA1Pxtmbm5P
grondilu
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December 02, 2012, 09:21:59 AM
 #5

then, please be super smart to let not-that-smart peole understood. that is what we habe been trying.

I tried very hard to make the Wikipedia article intelligible.  But at some point, I'm not sure it is worth the effort to do more.

Lemonde.fr is the electronic version of a journal that has been one of the main daily paper since 1944.  That's old.  People who read this on the internet age are seriously narrow-minded.
glub0x
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December 02, 2012, 12:29:45 PM
 #6

then, please be super smart to let not-that-smart peole understood. that is what we habe been trying.

I tried very hard to make the Wikipedia article intelligible.  But at some point, I'm not sure it is worth the effort to do more.

Lemonde.fr is the electronic version of a journal that has been one of the main daily paper since 1944.  That's old.  People who read this on the internet age are seriously narrow-minded.
this is not so true, the online version is followed by a very wide range of People much more than the paper version.
Then it's hard to get the message passing but i guess the Wordpress announcement translated in french would be a better article as it answer to the most important question: why bitcoin is better than paypal? And for french, Why is it better to NOT rely on americans for online payment?  (could give a link to mtgox and a few site where to pay with btc)
then eventually we can start to speak about why it's secure/how it works but this is not so intresting at first.
Wiki doesn't have to go in "political arguments", so i think the guy who wrote the article just failed in his mission.
 But still, bitcoin in lemonde.fr!

I ll try the translation, but my english is rather bad so don't expect too much.

The cost of mediation increases transaction costs, limiting the
minimum practical transaction size and cutting off the possibility for small casual transactions

Satoshi Nakamoto : https://bitcoin.org/bitcoin.pdf
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December 02, 2012, 12:44:08 PM
 #7

Guys face it, bitcoin is not easy to understand.

hazek
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December 02, 2012, 01:35:12 PM
 #8

Guys face it, bitcoin is not easy to understand.

And neither do we want it to be.

My personality type: INTJ - please forgive my weaknesses (Not naturally in tune with others feelings; may be insensitive at times, tend to respond to conflict with logic and reason, tend to believe I'm always right)

If however you enjoyed my post: 15j781DjuJeVsZgYbDVt2NZsGrWKRWFHpp
glub0x
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December 02, 2012, 02:16:04 PM
Last edit: December 02, 2012, 02:40:20 PM by glub0x
 #9

First lemonde, next the world. Mwahahah

(sorry, couldn't stop myself)

EDIT: BTW, this article has already been linked:
https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=128476.0

Hum nice didn't saw it Sad
i guess this thread can be removed or fusionate with the other one


Added the translation , see original post...

The cost of mediation increases transaction costs, limiting the
minimum practical transaction size and cutting off the possibility for small casual transactions

Satoshi Nakamoto : https://bitcoin.org/bitcoin.pdf
DeanC
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December 02, 2012, 11:41:53 PM
 #10

Guys face it, bitcoin is not easy to understand.

And neither do we want it to be.

Why we don't want bitcoin to be easy to understand?
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December 03, 2012, 12:06:19 AM
 #11

Think about it, if it were easy to understand it would likely mean it fits the paradigms and with it the functionality people are already used to, like paypal, or email type security.. so it's a good thing that Bitcoin is more complicated than that because it means it has features that make it orders of magnitude better than all the current similar solutions.

And it being complicated isn't really a problem.. Driving a car is complicated and yet people manage to learn to drive. So I think that instead of worrying about the complexity of Bitcoin, which we actually want because it means positive things, we should worry about how to teach these complexities to as many people in the best possible way not get rid of them.

That's all.

My personality type: INTJ - please forgive my weaknesses (Not naturally in tune with others feelings; may be insensitive at times, tend to respond to conflict with logic and reason, tend to believe I'm always right)

If however you enjoyed my post: 15j781DjuJeVsZgYbDVt2NZsGrWKRWFHpp
grondilu
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December 03, 2012, 12:15:54 AM
 #12

It's not that complicated.  Come on.

Honestly, I had to read Satoshi's paper several times to understand it.  So yeah, in a sense, it is complicated.  But there are lots of things even more complicated than that in life, and people deal with.  The example of driving a car mentioned above is an good one.

Here is an other:  bicycles.  When bicycle were invented, lots of people were bashing the idea and say that it could never be useful because it was too hard to drive, it required too much physical strength and so on.  It was too complicated.


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December 03, 2012, 02:25:21 AM
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Here is an other:  bicycles.  When bicycle were invented, lots of people were bashing the idea and say that it could never be useful because it was too hard to drive, it required too much physical strength and so on.  It was too complicated.
Yes, bitcoin is not complicated, it's new.

If people do not see why they have to make a little effort to understand, they won't.
Even the basic of the basic, (not the block chain and all) but why copy and past something strange?Why paying fees? (normal people think the credit card network is free at least in france). Why to change?

For instance, i use credit card every day. I have no idea how it works, is it complicated? i just don't care...
I use credit card every day because i can buy anything from a piece of bread to a car, very fast, and i'm sure that if i loose it i just lost 5 euro. Much better than cash!
If someone presented me the Credit card network without teasing me before, i would just run away. Or answer, yeah looks nice, didn't understand anything.
NASA do not sell there spaceship saying how they are made, they sell it saying we might find life or whatever.
Are president elected on technic ability? Not so sure...
Normal poeple do not want to understand, they want to dream.

Who says that we should just present bitcoin as a "magic payment system"? looks great for me. The curious (clever?) one, will find there way to the information.

So in this case 50% of the article is about tech,  a good part speak about a service without going in any usecase. Nothing about, why it's better, what you can do with it that u can't already and how it'll make the world much nicer.

The cost of mediation increases transaction costs, limiting the
minimum practical transaction size and cutting off the possibility for small casual transactions

Satoshi Nakamoto : https://bitcoin.org/bitcoin.pdf
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December 03, 2012, 09:37:54 AM
 #14

People who read this on the internet age are seriously narrow-minded.
I like Le Monde.

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December 03, 2012, 09:48:21 AM
 #15

By the way, while otherwise well written and well documented, the article contains an interesting oversimplification, confusing the number of blocks with the number of transactions.
It might be easier to explain Bitcoin, first without the concept of block, second with the concept of block as a way to address the scalability issue.

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December 05, 2012, 09:07:54 AM
 #16

Journalists writing to a generic public should not try to explain how Bitcoin works.

Imagine some revolutionary new medicine has just been invented, and you're going to write about it, targeting a generic audience. Will you try to explain how its molecules interact with the human body, showing the chemical formulas and all in fancy charts? Or you will just talk about its general effects and its eventual risks?

Somebody talking/writing about Bitcoin to the general public should take the same approach. Do not try to explain how the system works. Do not mention "mining". Just explain Bitcoin is a currency with no authority, supported by a distributed network of people all around the world. Explain that the money is "stored" in a file, and that if you lose the file, you lose the money. Don't talk about "addresses", instead call them "accounts", but say that accounts should be disposable: you may have as many as you want, you should only use each once, and you don't need to remember its number, the software will do it for you. You may say the wallet file contains all accounts.

Some people will ask: "But how are the first coins created?". Answer briefly: "they're given as reward for those who voluntarily support the distributed network, it's an expensive task." If the person asks "But what exactly do these people do to support the network? Can I support it too?", you may just answer "That's complicated, I can't answer it without entering into technical details. People who do this are professionals. You should just know that it's them who verify that transactions are good to go".

In other words, avoid going too technical - and there's no way to explain how Bitcoin actually works without going too technical. So just explain what it can do and how to use it.
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December 05, 2012, 09:21:58 AM
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Journalists writing to a generic public should not try to explain how Bitcoin works.

Imagine some revolutionary new medicine has just been invented, and you're going to write about it, targeting a generic audience. Will you try to explain how its molecules interact with the human body, showing the chemical formulas and all in fancy charts? Or you will just talk about its general effects and its eventual risks?

I'm sorry but I'll disagree.  It's totally normal and expected from a journalist to at least attempt to explain how things work.

It's just that this particular journalist has made a terrible job.
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December 05, 2012, 10:19:15 AM
 #18

Grondilu, it really depends on your audience.
Most people don't have a clue on how paracétamol works, for example, and don't want to understand it, but they'll use it because they understand its effects.
Just take a look at wikipedia page for Paracétamol. Most people would be immediately "frightened" by the first picture on the right and close the page all of the sudden. The greatest majority of people wouldn't even start reading it. I didn't.

Technical audiences will be intrigued by Bitcoin and will want to learn how it works. But Le Monde writes to a broad, generic audience. Trying to explain how Bitcoin works to such audience is like trying to explain how paracétamol works. Don't waste your time. Actually, if you do, you're more likely to scare people away than to make them interested in it.
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December 05, 2012, 01:01:04 PM
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It's totally normal and expected from a journalist to at least attempt to explain how things work.
No, you should not expect an explanation from a journalist, you should expect vulgarization.

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December 05, 2012, 02:36:57 PM
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It's totally normal and expected from a journalist to at least attempt to explain how things work.
No, you should not expect an explanation from a journalist, you should expect vulgarization.

Media, let's say, nourishes itself on scandals.
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