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Author Topic: Bitcoin needs to be easier  (Read 1988 times)
cartman
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June 08, 2011, 01:33:13 PM
 #1

Since the last waves bitcoin attracted more and more medium- and low-tech users. I find it crucial, bitcoin becomes a very easy to use currency, else I predict it will stay in a niche.

There are two major points, that frighten low-tech-users:

1. downloading blockchain and "ripening of transactions". which appear like high entry-costs for first-timers.
2. fear to loose the wallet and the need for thoughtful (!) backup methods


The first one might be improved by good and extremly (!) simple and bold printed FAQ. In addition, the GUI should look more solid.
The second one is more difficult. Maybe there should be some backup options in the client like "Email me encrypted wallet" and "upload to Dropbox account with user xy and pass".
Actually - for the masses and little btc amounts - I would suggest something like mybitcoin.com (Paypal-style), where a small amout of bitcoins is stored at a third party and everything ist highly usable for everyday life (it somehow solves 2. and 1.). This might also simplify transactions via Android and provides a save-feel about the coins being backuped by some serious infratructure. Your account can be accessed from everywhere etc. Of course this is not bitcoin as intended, but it would fulfill the needs of a different target group.
Still there only seems to be mybitcoin.com out there. mybitcoin.com however can't be a way to go, since there is no liable real name behind it.

Please correct me, if I overlooked another website!

I find it very crucial, that bitcoin is widely used, because it prevents bitcoin from being criminalized and leads to more stable values.
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bernd
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June 08, 2011, 03:23:03 PM
 #2

Yeah i thought of the same problem. I think what will happen is: many people do have a serious interest in promoting Bitcoin to the masses for everyday use. If that happens all the miners and traders now will
see their stockprice secured. Because of this there will hopefully be bounties for solutions to the problems you described, as it has happened so often in the past. Just imagine an early miner with his thousands of BTC
donating 1k BTC to the development of a more userfriendly application this problem would solve itself in an instant. I think the solution to this will come out of the interest of the many "stockholders" in the enterprise that Bitcoin has become, myself not excluded Wink
cartman
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June 08, 2011, 06:08:29 PM
 #3

More precisely:

Which websites do exist, that compete with mybitcoin.com?

I would like to have a usable webinterface within a trustworthy third party. Furthermore I would like to tell all my peers about such website. I can't believe there is no such thing.
herzmeister
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June 08, 2011, 07:15:35 PM
 #4

Yes surely such websites are the preferable way for novice users, and there should be more competition to mybitcoin.com.

I'd also like to see services where I can up-/download my wallet so that I don't have different wallets spread over the entire interwebz.

https://localbitcoins.com/?ch=80k | BTC: 1LJvmd1iLi199eY7EVKtNQRW3LqZi8ZmmB
Garrett Burgwardt
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June 08, 2011, 07:27:49 PM
 #5

Calling someone used to be hard. Using a TV used to be hard. Give it a bit of time. For less than 3 years of development, it is working pretty fast.
westkybitcoins
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June 08, 2011, 07:32:10 PM
 #6

More precisely:

Which websites do exist, that compete with mybitcoin.com?

I would like to have a usable webinterface within a trustworthy third party. Furthermore I would like to tell all my peers about such website. I can't believe there is no such thing.

https://instawallet.org

I actually prefer it to mybitcoin. Instawallet is immediate, no sign up required. You might want to take a few seconds to ensure you can keep track of your instant wallet though.

Bitcoin is the ultimate freedom test. It tells you who is giving lip service and who genuinely believes in it.
...
...
In the future, books that summarize the history of money will have a line that says, “and then came bitcoin.” It is the economic singularity. And we are living in it now. - Ryan Dickherber
...
...
ATTENTION BFL MINING NEWBS: Just got your Jalapenos in? Wondering how to get the most value for the least hassle? Give BitMinter a try! It's a smaller pool with a fair & low-fee payment method, lots of statistical feedback, and it's easier than EasyMiner! (Yes, we want your hashing power, but seriously, it IS the easiest pool to use! Sign up in seconds to try it!)
...
...
The idea that deflation causes hoarding (to any problematic degree) is a lie used to justify theft of value from your savings.
westkybitcoins
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June 08, 2011, 07:35:54 PM
 #7

Actually - for the masses and little btc amounts - I would suggest something like mybitcoin.com (Paypal-style), where a small amout of bitcoins is stored at a third party and everything ist highly usable for everyday life (it somehow solves 2. and 1.). This might also simplify transactions via Android and provides a save-feel about the coins being backuped by some serious infratructure. Your account can be accessed from everywhere etc. Of course this is not bitcoin as intended, but it would fulfill the needs of a different target group.

Bingo.

For now, for a few coins, smartphone users don't need a dedicated app.

Online sites can give you a free wallet. You can email or text message addresses to each other. That's all you really need for quick and dirty on-the-go bitcoin trading. It's already totally doable.  Grin

Bitcoin is the ultimate freedom test. It tells you who is giving lip service and who genuinely believes in it.
...
...
In the future, books that summarize the history of money will have a line that says, “and then came bitcoin.” It is the economic singularity. And we are living in it now. - Ryan Dickherber
...
...
ATTENTION BFL MINING NEWBS: Just got your Jalapenos in? Wondering how to get the most value for the least hassle? Give BitMinter a try! It's a smaller pool with a fair & low-fee payment method, lots of statistical feedback, and it's easier than EasyMiner! (Yes, we want your hashing power, but seriously, it IS the easiest pool to use! Sign up in seconds to try it!)
...
...
The idea that deflation causes hoarding (to any problematic degree) is a lie used to justify theft of value from your savings.
cartman
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June 08, 2011, 08:33:10 PM
 #8

instawallet looks nice. maybe the "adress-thing" is not safe enough, though... would like to see a really neat and safe interface. if there is nothing more competitive i maybe start programming one. however i am a bit paranoid of repression Wink

@garrett: totally agree, and i am very happy, how fast everything is going! nevertheless i think these days the client usability and backup-worries are the two best options to even speed up the whole thing. many new users are coming every day and i think there are many who cant deal with everything and wont give it a new try in the next years...
IIOII
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June 08, 2011, 08:37:18 PM
 #9

instawallet looks nice. maybe the "adress-thing" is not safe enough, though... would like to see a really neat and safe interface. if there is nothing more competitive i maybe start programming one. however i am a bit paranoid of repression Wink

+1

do it, we need more these safe-and-easy-things

em3rgentOrdr
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youtube.com/ericfontainejazz now accepts bitcoin


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June 08, 2011, 09:53:29 PM
 #10

Noobie fear, uncertainty, and doubt.  NoobFUD.

"We will not find a solution to political problems in cryptography, but we can win a major battle in the arms race and gain a new territory of freedom for several years.

Governments are good at cutting off the heads of a centrally controlled networks, but pure P2P networks are holding their own."
generalunited
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June 09, 2011, 07:57:01 PM
 #11

if a bounty could be put together this could happen really quick. i'm going to the NYC bitcoin meetup on saturday and will talk to folks about putting something together --- i've got the address http://coin.is and would like to set something up thats dead simple so people can reference bitcoins like http://coin.is/1Gy8cVUKykZqQ5MmCyKMCi7ExwY8NvgeLA --- do escrows with 3rd party services like http://clear.coin.is/1Gy8cVUKykZqQ5MmCyKMCi7ExwY8NvgeLA such as the clearcoin app by gavin --- and have a 'coin wallet in the cloud' with a datastore.

the debut of apple's iCloud will make syncronizing wallets between phones and computers effortless --- from my understanding icloud can be accessed regardless of what platform device is being used --- there are also really great efforts to make cloud storage systems that are more in line with the bitcoin philosophy such as http://camlistore.org/

as for getting names behind it --- i think that could be taken care of --- for starters the Icelandic government has announced an initiative for setting up iceland as a datahaven for freedom of expression ( http://immi.is ) --- so while i know the bitcoin community doesn't generally look for government endorsement -- it could come from there....

i work out of a NYC startup coworking space ( http://generalassemb.ly ) --- lots of big name sponsors and investors there --- shouldnt be too hard to find ones that would be up for putting their name on a site like 'coin.is'  -- or whatever -- what kind of endorsement would a) the bitcoin community appreciate/not get upset with --- and b) would the general population want

i really dont know much about the answer to a) as i'm new to this community --- so would really be good to get some consensus going ---- we could pass around a survey to get more feedback about what the 'early adopter' community wants --- and then do another one for the 'late-adopters' who are now coming into the fold and looking for usability.

feel free to get in touch: sean@generalunited.co

(i feel like i'm spamming the forums a bit with this 'coin.is' stuff --- just trying to put it out there - apologies to anyone that feels spammed )
Gavin Andresen
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June 10, 2011, 04:20:54 AM
 #12

I'll confess: the bitcoin GUI is not a high development priority for me because I think downloading and running software on your computer will soon be almost extinct.

I expect pretty soon most people will be using bitcoin through web applications (like mybitcoin or instawallet) or as apps running on their mobile phones.

I'll also confess that I like the bittorrent model-- create a great technology, a "good enough" interface for it, and encourage the creation of compatible applications that have great user interfaces.

How often do you get the chance to work on a potentially world-changing project?
imperi
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June 10, 2011, 04:24:29 AM
 #13

I'll confess: the bitcoin GUI is not a high development priority for me because I think downloading and running software on your computer will soon be almost extinct.

I expect pretty soon most people will be using bitcoin through web applications (like mybitcoin or instawallet) or as apps running on their mobile phones.

I'll also confess that I like the bittorrent model-- create a great technology, a "good enough" interface for it, and encourage the creation of compatible applications that have great user interfaces.


This.

+++1
underjeep
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June 10, 2011, 04:27:49 AM
 #14

touch me Gavin!!!!!!!!!!  have my babies
Stevie1024
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June 10, 2011, 09:14:08 AM
 #15

I expect pretty soon most people will be using bitcoin through web applications (like mybitcoin or instawallet) or as apps running on their mobile phones.

Wow, one of the most important features of bitcoin down the drain: "Own your money!" (http://www.weusecoins.com/)

touch me Gavin!!!!!!!!!!  have my babies

I'm begging the two of you, please don't have babies...

I'm out of here!
ctoon6
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June 10, 2011, 09:20:12 AM
 #16

I don't trust banks, so why would I trust some brand new website with all my "hard" earned btc?

cartman
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June 10, 2011, 04:01:46 PM
 #17

i also keep most of my btc secured in an encrypted wallet.dat. still i would like to put a few somewhere for easy spending.

nevertheless, there are a lot of people who might switch from paypal to bitcoin, not with their entire wealth but with some digital pocket money. thats why "there will be web applications", there simply is demand. my point is more about WHEN there is a useable and "trustable" service, because the first jump from techs to no-techs seems to happen right now. so having a solid web application may speed things up, instead of risking the image of an unusable-payment-something given by the media.
just can't wait to see bitcoin break through Smiley

for a service to be "trustable" their should at least be the name of a real person. instawallet made a good start i think. its also nice, to give out a few bitcent to people just to try out.
as far as i understand instawallet, it is secured by the hash of the hind part of the url. like if i use 20 signs, it is as secured as some sign-up/login-system with a 8 sign username and 12 sign passphrase. please correct me Smiley
jostmey
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June 10, 2011, 04:28:49 PM
 #18

Perhaps one way of easing the burden for people installing the bitcoin client software for the first time is to offer to download a cache of database files. This would mean that the client software only has to download the last month of transactions from the peer-to-peer network instead of the entire past few years worth of blocks.

Still, downloading a cache of the database files would be take awhile.

- Jared

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