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remotemass
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January 19, 2013, 06:44:07 AM
 #1

Ham radio can be used to receive encrypted messages, so it can be used to send and receive bitcoins over very long distances.
Imagine a scenario in the future where only Brazil has internet as we know it today and allows bitcoin to be used.
We could use ham radio using encrypted communications for bitcoin sweep.
Then again, ham radio communication seems easier to restrict than the internet.
By the way, do you think in such scenario would be possible to use an old fashioned modem to connect with internet in Brazil using ham radio?

Would be great there was a torrent file of all referenced materials of the paper: "How to Build Time-Lock Encryption" by Tibor Jager. And having its magnet link published on bitcoin blockchain!
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January 19, 2013, 06:49:33 AM
 #2

"HAM" radio is a specific, licensed service with a prohibition on encrypted communications.

I do believe that "high frequency" or "shortwave" radio, which is what you mean, will play a role in human liberty.

This is not some pseudoeconomic post-modern Libertarian cult, it's an un-led, crowd-sourced mega startup organized around mutual self-interest where problems, whether of the theoretical or purely practical variety, are treated as temporary and, ultimately, solvable.
Censorship of e-gold was easy. Censorship of Bitcoin will be… entertaining.
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January 19, 2013, 07:49:00 AM
 #3

Ham radio can be used to receive encrypted messages, so it can be used to send and receive bitcoins over very long distances.
Imagine a scenario in the future where only Brazil has internet as we know it today and allows bitcoin to be used.
We could use ham radio using encrypted communications for bitcoin sweep.
Then again, ham radio communication seems easier to restrict than the internet.
By the way, do you think in such scenario would be possible to use an old fashioned modem to connect with internet in Brazil using ham radio?


Being forced to radio sort of indicates to me a very severe situation.  I would guess that under a situation where free communications were severely restricted, any attempt to carry on data conversations would result in a very quick visit from a drone.

About ten years ago I got interested enough in all the funny noises on radio bands and got an RX320 radio then ported some software to my operating system of choice.  Someone told me that they were 'computers talking' when I was a kid (70's) and I always wondered what they were saying to one another.  I found that there are a lot of modulation types and it is quite possible to receive data from all over the Pacific at least.  I went back to work about that time and have yet to get back into the hobby.

My current belief is that while it might be possible to keep any eye on things like spot prices and such, but again, I imagine that any attempt to actually send would be nothing more than a beacon telling the authorities where to find you.  Or at least your radio gear.


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January 19, 2013, 08:34:05 AM
 #4

there has existed for somehing like 35 years an analogue modem for 27MHZ, 142MHZ licenced and unlicensed. It's just a little PCB you solder to your mike / speaker points. There are multiple private 24/7 uplinks around the world. so you can mail and surf as you would normally, but slow. Around 2K baud, So try to sync your block chain on that.

As a post apocalyptic internet it's fine.


 
 
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tehace
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January 19, 2013, 05:39:00 PM
 #5

there has existed for somehing like 35 years an analogue modem for 27MHZ, 142MHZ licenced and unlicensed. It's just a little PCB you solder to your mike / speaker points. There are multiple private 24/7 uplinks around the world. so you can mail and surf as you would normally, but slow. Around 2K baud, So try to sync your block chain on that.

As a post apocalyptic internet it's fine.

This sounds really interesting. Any chance on a link to more info?

DOGE: DChHzYffNDrMsM9L1GtG14cmp1NUXrEe9Z
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January 19, 2013, 09:55:19 PM
 #6

Yeah but how F*ING long would it take to download the block chain on an hf modem??
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January 19, 2013, 10:00:18 PM
 #7

regards highly resistent networks and radios...
 what you want is something listening all the time and caching messages.... then able to only transmit shortly before moving...

this could be done with bluetooth or wifi but I've never seen it done well (including serval for android)

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January 19, 2013, 10:47:06 PM
 #8

So, it's funny this thread came up today because I was just thinking about HAM radio applications for bitcoin.  Transactions over the radio wouldn't be super-feasible using voice modes (but perhaps using digital modes).  They need not be encrypted, just signed.  AFAIK, sending a cryptographically signed message for authentication should be fine since the data is in the clear.  Here's an extensive write-up on the subject:

http://blog.rietta.com/2009/08/authentication-without-encryption-for.html

Quote
WHAT DOES PART 97 SAY?
Section 97.113 (4) "...messages in codes or ciphers intended to obscure the meaning thereof, except as otherwise provided herein..."

Based on the above quote, we can use any method at our disposal to provide for secure authentication which does not obscure the meaning of communications.

HAMs could get a vanity bitcoin address with their callsign, and use that to receive donations (like for rare DX), sell products, contribute anonymously to radio clubs/nets, participate in contests where rewards are sent via bitcoin, etc.  In fact, I'm generating one for my callsign right now (sold all my video cards, so it's SLOOWWWW - will take 2 hours). 

If I manage to get my radio going (HF), I'll post in here, and if another HAM is interested I'd love to send some µBTC to them after a radio negotiation.  The HAM community is VERY technical, and has a sort of libertarian streak at times, so they should welcome BTC IMHO.

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tvbcof
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January 20, 2013, 12:52:05 AM
 #9

So, it's funny this thread came up today because I was just thinking about HAM radio applications for bitcoin.  Transactions over the radio wouldn't be super-feasible using voice modes (but perhaps using digital modes).  They need not be encrypted, just signed.  AFAIK, sending a cryptographically signed message for authentication should be fine since the data is in the clear.  Here's an extensive write-up on the subject:

http://blog.rietta.com/2009/08/authentication-without-encryption-for.html

Quote
WHAT DOES PART 97 SAY?
Section 97.113 (4) "...messages in codes or ciphers intended to obscure the meaning thereof, except as otherwise provided herein..."

Based on the above quote, we can use any method at our disposal to provide for secure authentication which does not obscure the meaning of communications.

HAMs could get a vanity bitcoin address with their callsign, and use that to receive donations (like for rare DX), sell products, contribute anonymously to radio clubs/nets, participate in contests where rewards are sent via bitcoin, etc.  In fact, I'm generating one for my callsign right now (sold all my video cards, so it's SLOOWWWW - will take 2 hours). 

If I manage to get my radio going (HF), I'll post in here, and if another HAM is interested I'd love to send some µBTC to them after a radio negotiation.  The HAM community is VERY technical, and has a sort of libertarian streak at times, so they should welcome BTC IMHO.

I think it would be great to try to get the HAM community involved, and it didn't dawn on me about the libertarian streak, but I bet you are right.

I do believe that it is for all intents and purposes pretty hopeless to do anything like P2P Bitcoin stuff over radio.  Most computer folks will argue that the system is not to bloated as long as 10GB data bandwidths still works...in theory.  There might be some room for thin clients and possibly for close geography links (like say a couple hundred meters across the boarder to a free country such as Ecuador) but after thinking about it a bit, I've concluded that it's not the best hope if/when free communications between individuals and labeled a terrorist act and such.

Although I've not studied the subject in depth I bet you are wrong in the conjecture of the meaning of Section 97.113.  Both in theory, and more importantly, in practice.  Thanks to some incredible work by some of our cypherpunk forefathers there was a gaping hole blown in the Internet part of the spectrum but I fully expect that to be patched up at some point and for our leaderships to be more careful going forward so that that does not happen again.


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January 20, 2013, 01:09:06 AM
 #10

there has existed for somehing like 35 years an analogue modem for 27MHZ, 142MHZ licenced and unlicensed. It's just a little PCB you solder to your mike / speaker points. There are multiple private 24/7 uplinks around the world. so you can mail and surf as you would normally, but slow. Around 2K baud, So try to sync your block chain on that.

As a post apocalyptic internet it's fine.

This sounds really interesting. Any chance on a link to more info?

Here you go, it's called a TNC: http://www.coolcircuit.com/gadgets/category/ham-radio/ There are 100+ pages about them.

Apparently there are also micro processor versions now...

BTW there are also free HAM satellite repeters for voice and data: http://www.amsat.org/amsat-new/index.php


 
 
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matthewh3
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July 24, 2014, 01:49:04 AM
 #11

You'd need about 2kbps to download seven 1MB blocks an hour.  That's a lot of bandwidth 24/7/365 on a global HF network.  I think the Bitsat project and the use of UHF and SHF for a lot more relative bandwidth is the best solution for a global wireless network - https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=334701.0

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July 24, 2014, 02:22:40 AM
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Most certainly interesting. But yes, this would indicate a very very severe problem.

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July 24, 2014, 02:24:50 AM
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You'd need about 2kbps to download seven 1MB blocks an hour.  That's a lot of bandwidth 24/7/365 on a global HF network.  I think the Bitsat project and the use of UHF and SHF for a lot more relative bandwidth is the best solution for a global wireless network - https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=334701.0

How would http://www.short-wave.info/ stations work for 2kbps?

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July 24, 2014, 02:31:19 AM
 #14

Well I'm pretty up to date on stuff and I've never even heard of ham radio so I'm going to look into it. Just by following the thread though, you're not saying to use ham radio as a replacement for the bitcoin network right?  Because that needs miners Rex. You're just talking about using it to send certain transactions?  Or data too?
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July 24, 2014, 02:37:23 AM
 #15

You'd need about 2kbps to download seven 1MB blocks an hour.  That's a lot of bandwidth 24/7/365 on a global HF network.  I think the Bitsat project and the use of UHF and SHF for a lot more relative bandwidth is the best solution for a global wireless network - https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=334701.0

How would http://www.short-wave.info/ stations work for 2kbps?

Quote
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Q15X25

Q15X25 is a digital signal processor-intensive mode designed to pass AX.25 packets on HF with speed and reliability much greater than traditional HF ARQ modems. It uses 15 QPSK modulated carriers separated by 125 Hertz, each modulated at 83.333 baud. Q15X25 uses forward error correction (FEC), and like MT63, uses time- and frequency-interleaving in order to avoid most error sources. The raw transmission data rate is typically 2500 bit/s.

So 6.67 minutes to download a 1MB block at 2.5kbps.  You'd need to operate on two channels so that you had a 2.5kbps receive and 2.5kbps transmit at the same time.

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July 24, 2014, 02:42:43 AM
 #16

So there's the receiving the blockchain side, what about just sending transactions and not bothering to wait for an ack?

It seems like there would need to be a worldwide net of receiving nodes with internet access listening for TXes on whatever frequencies we/the ITU decides are standard, then if 2 or more are able to clearly receive decodable TXes from the same sender, the better. Byte sizes of my last 5 received TX: 440 225 257 374 439. Since I don't have any higher tech, let me run the 440 byte hex through a morse code generator at 80 WPM (assuming digital decode) and see how long it takes. 3 mins 20 secs.

Or on Q15X25 http://www.calctool.org/CALC/prof/computing/transfer_time says 1.37500 seconds.

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July 28, 2014, 06:44:59 AM
 #17

 HAM is basically regulating the airwaves that anybody can tune in, isn't it?
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July 28, 2014, 07:06:28 AM
 #18

HAM is basically regulating the airwaves that anybody can tune in, isn't it?

Yes, anyone can tune in to listen to ham radio, but it's important that we have parts of the radio spectrum to ourselves, otherwise all frequencies from DC to daylight would be licensed for commercial and public safety (much of which isn't listenable without buying horrifically expensive gear, if it isn't completely encrypted for no reason other than to eliminate transparency) use. US.gov doesn't really make much from ham radio, and could easily say "fuck it, this is worthless, time to make some money, bye hams".

The only fees they collect are for the radio equivalent of vanity license plates; vanity callsigns. To get a randomly assigned callsign is free, but most of them are hard to copy under poor radio conditions, so some of us get vanities. Currently they're $16.10 for 10 years, but the FCC is seeking to increase it: http://w6sg.net/site/?p=1270

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July 28, 2014, 08:31:41 AM
 #19

Convert address into audio, pass audio through radio, pay address
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July 28, 2014, 08:54:53 AM
 #20

sending the blockchain through sound.. hmm thats the equivalent to using dialup to download a 20gb file. but without the ability to check packets are complete without errors.

useful for sending signed tx's. but not useful for whole blockchains. so keep this concept to signed tx's only

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