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Author Topic: Can new bitcoins be created  (Read 1276 times)
constitution
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January 22, 2013, 08:58:36 PM
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Hey guys, topic says it all,

Can new bitcoins be created after the 21 million Bitcoin cap is reached? Im looking 50 years down the road, won't bitcoins be to scarse for a world internet economy?

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January 22, 2013, 09:02:40 PM
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Not original bitcoins on this protocol, no. 21 million (actually it's 20.999.999,97something I think to be pedantic) is a hard limit.

However, each and every 'bitcoin' (they're not actually coins, it's just a name!) is divided into 100 million 'satoshi', which ought to be enough. And if, by some miracle, by Jove! one single satoshi ever has any noticeable value, the blockchain may be so busy that a lot of bitcoin accounting will be done internally on separate systems away from the blockchain itself (as can already happen with any Bitcoin business or exchange, e.g. Mt Gox), and in that instance they can account in sub-satoshi units privately, e.g. nBTC, pBTC, whatever.

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January 22, 2013, 09:04:44 PM
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Hey guys, topic says it all,

Can new bitcoins be created after the 21 million Bitcoin cap is reached? Im looking 50 years down the road, won't bitcoins be to scarse for a world internet economy?

Absent a total breakdown of the protocol, yes it could be done, but you need an overwhelming degree of agreement amongst current users of bitcoin.
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January 22, 2013, 09:10:46 PM
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Hey guys, topic says it all,

Can new bitcoins be created after the 21 million Bitcoin cap is reached? Im looking 50 years down the road, won't bitcoins be to scarse for a world internet economy?
I get the feeling the nature of your question is more about "how do we make bitcoins after they've all been mined?". If that's so, even after 99.99999999% of new coins cease to be created, miners will still be earning the coins used for transaction fees, which as I understand it, would cause the free market to increase the fees lest miners stop mining and bitcoins become less dependable and secure.

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January 22, 2013, 09:33:32 PM
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Interesting, guess its kind of a good thing who knows how much 1 bitcoin may be worth in 5-10 years.

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January 23, 2013, 04:34:56 AM
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Interesting, guess its kind of a good thing who knows how much 1 bitcoin may be worth in 5-10 years.

Yeah, could be 0, don't forget.

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January 23, 2013, 01:06:01 PM
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Quote
won't bitcoins be to scarse for a world internet economy?
No
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January 23, 2013, 04:20:57 PM
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Don't forget either that Bitcoins can be broken up very easily so you could have prices like 0.0005 in fact I'm already seeing it happen in some cases but the goods clearly look like they're copied or are outright rip offs of the original work.
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January 23, 2013, 07:02:13 PM
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Hey guys, topic says it all,

Can new bitcoins be created after the 21 million Bitcoin cap is reached? Im looking 50 years down the road, won't bitcoins be to scarse for a world internet economy?

Absent a total breakdown of the protocol, yes it could be done, but you need an overwhelming degree of agreement amongst current users of bitcoin.

+1
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January 23, 2013, 07:42:51 PM
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Hey guys, topic says it all,

Can new bitcoins be created after the 21 million Bitcoin cap is reached? Im looking 50 years down the road, won't bitcoins be to scarse for a world internet economy?

https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/Myths#21_million_coins_isn.27t_enough.3B_doesn.27t_scale

https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/FAQ#But_if_no_more_coins_are_generated.2C_what_happens_when_Bitcoins_are_lost.3F_Won.27t_that_be_a_problem.3F

https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/Myths#Lost_coins_can.27t_be_replaced_and_this_is_bad

https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/Myths#Finite_coins_plus_lost_coins_means_deflationary_spiral

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January 23, 2013, 07:54:30 PM
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what happens when bitcoins are lost? bitcoins are money - people dont lose money intentially but money is lost everyday/scattered around the world, under the sea, blown up, etc. it wont mean much if a bitcoin is lost because it will be a very rare occurence
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January 23, 2013, 08:03:53 PM
 #12

El, Oh, El.

The only way that bitcoins are going to fail due to lack of supply is if people Constantly lose thier wallets holding >1000 coins.

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January 23, 2013, 08:09:36 PM
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what happens when bitcoins are lost? bitcoins are money - people dont lose money intentially but money is lost everyday/scattered around the world, under the sea, blown up, etc. it wont mean much if a bitcoin is lost because it will be a very rare occurence

This link was posted just prior to your post, but it answers your question:

https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/FAQ#But_if_no_more_coins_are_generated.2C_what_happens_when_Bitcoins_are_lost.3F_Won.27t_that_be_a_problem.3F

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January 23, 2013, 08:37:00 PM
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It's exactly like gold in sunken galleons  Smiley
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January 23, 2013, 10:22:00 PM
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It's exactly like gold in sunken galleons  Smiley

Except that gold has a small chance of being found. Cheesy

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January 23, 2013, 10:43:27 PM
 #16

It's exactly like gold in sunken galleons  Smiley

Except that gold has a small chance of being found. Cheesy

There is a small chance lost BTC can be found if the cryptographic algorithm protecting current addresses eventually is compromised to the point that "treasure hunters" can brute force existing addresses.
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January 23, 2013, 10:45:36 PM
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It's exactly like gold in sunken galleons  Smiley

Except that gold has a small chance of being found. Cheesy

There is a small chance lost BTC can be found if the cryptographic algorithm protecting it eventually is compromised to the point that "treasure hunters" can brute existing addresses. 
Y'know, Hes actually right....  ... Coooooooooollllll

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January 23, 2013, 10:47:16 PM
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It's exactly like gold in sunken galleons  Smiley

Except that gold has a small chance of being found. Cheesy

There is a small chance lost BTC can be found if the cryptographic algorithm protecting it eventually is compromised to the point that "treasure hunters" can brute existing addresses. 

That's something to look forward to in the future. As the son of a man who has panned for gold, metal detected on beaches and old civil war sites, and looks for treasure all the time, that interests me. It would only apply to wallets that were "lost" because they never upgraded their encryption right?

mintymark
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January 23, 2013, 10:53:38 PM
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No, he's not right.

The chances of finding 'lost' Bitcoins is the same as finding 'wanted' bitcoins. As most bitcoins are 'wanted' you'll most likely just be stealing other peoples bitcoins. But wait a second? The chance of finding gold on the ocean floor is small but as we all know not absolutly impossible. The chances of 'finding' other peoples bitcoins are so many magnitudes more tiny that really it would be more truthful to just say its going to be impossible even if we had a computer for each molecule in the universe.

And dont get me started on 'lost' bit coins. Maybe I wrote down the private key in clay tablet that I absolutly expected would be dug up in 8000 years time!! You would never know!

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January 23, 2013, 10:57:45 PM
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It's exactly like gold in sunken galleons  Smiley

Except that gold has a small chance of being found. Cheesy

There is a small chance lost BTC can be found if the cryptographic algorithm protecting it eventually is compromised to the point that "treasure hunters" can brute existing addresses. 

That's something to look forward to in the future. As the son of a man who has panned for gold, metal detected on beaches and old civil war sites, and looks for treasure all the time, that interests me. It would only apply to wallets that were "lost" because they never upgraded their encryption right?


Right.  Technically if there was some "slow" users who didn't upgrade their "not so lost" coins could be treasure hunted too.  However based on prior cryptographic breaks we are probably talking about a timeline in years if not decades even after a credible flaw is found.  More than enough time for even the most clueless user to move to new address types. For example although SHA-1 is considered cryptographically broken if Bitcoin addresses used SHA-1 it would still be uneconomical to brute force.  Estimated cost to produce a single collision is roughly $2.7M USD using rented cloud computing time.  The original flaw in SHA-1 was found in 2005 based on a known flaw from SHA-0 found in 1998.  

http://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2012/10/when_will_we_se.html

The interesting thing is that if/when that happens we will get the first good estimate of the number of truly cost coins. 
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