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Author Topic: Why Bitcoin Core Developers won't compromise  (Read 11067 times)
AgentofCoin
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May 17, 2017, 10:19:33 PM
 #141

Everyone keeps using the word "compromise", but no one is actually budging on their stance.  Most of the people fixated on increasing the blocksize still want an increase of at least 200% and most of the people fixated on not touching the 'base' blocksize still want 0% increase until an unspecified time in the future.  

It seems obvious when you say it, but apparently it has to be spelled out in no uncertain terms:  An actual compromise would require both camps to soften their stance a little.  Is anyone prepared to do that?  Stop drawing lines in the sand over what you won't accept and start talking about what you will accept.  And for what must be the dozenth time, the blocksize doesn't have to be a whole number and nor does it have to be static.  

There can be no compromise in this debate since it is about the hardfork
mechanism itself, not scaling. The scaling debate is only the tool currently
being used to push for a hardfork. In theory, if scaling was the only issue,
there are many different answers that already exist without using a hardfork.

Big Blockers want to use a hardfork, Small Blockers want to use optimizations/
second layers/softforks. So, what is the compromise between those two sides?

There is no compromise for that, only capitulation to one or the other.
By offering a combination of both, it defeats the main cause of the other
position. It ignores the true meaning behind this impasse. That is why this
debate will continue till capitulation or contentious hardfork.

People who are requesting compromises, IMO, are not aware of what is
actually occurring or how Bitcoin functions. Compromise does not exists within
this current Bitcoin debate.

IMO, asking for "compromises" is the most dumbed-down answer that could
ever be provided by anyone. It is the easy answer, no thought involved.
Instead those people need to figure out what the middle ground between a
hardfork and a softfork is, and then you will find your "compromise". Until
then, they should stop requesting nonsense. IMO the future is capitulation
or contentious hardfork. There is no other worthy possibility.

I support a decentralized & unregulatable ledger first, with safe scaling over time.
Request a signed message if you are associating with anyone claiming to be me.
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May 17, 2017, 10:36:35 PM
 #142

I am so confused as to why the scaling problem isn't sorted. This might put off a lot of non techno lay people entering the Bitcoin space because they are used to dealing with cash, fast in and fast out. Bitcoin has huge value but all the DEVS and Miners need to get out of their own little spaces and really think about the common good for everyone to be able to easily adopt and use Bitcoin for everyday use.

That's not going to happen anytime soon, they have no intention of doing something like that as long as they have a huge gain from the situation as it is now and I think we're all aware of that.

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May 17, 2017, 11:11:22 PM
 #143

Everyone keeps using the word "compromise", but no one is actually budging on their stance.  Most of the people fixated on increasing the blocksize still want an increase of at least 200% and most of the people fixated on not touching the 'base' blocksize still want 0% increase until an unspecified time in the future.  

It seems obvious when you say it, but apparently it has to be spelled out in no uncertain terms:  An actual compromise would require both camps to soften their stance a little.  Is anyone prepared to do that?  Stop drawing lines in the sand over what you won't accept and start talking about what you will accept.  And for what must be the dozenth time, the blocksize doesn't have to be a whole number and nor does it have to be static.  

There can be no compromise in this debate since it is about the hardfork
mechanism itself, not scaling. The scaling debate is only the tool currently
being used to push for a hardfork. In theory, if scaling was the only issue,
there are many different answers that already exist without using a hardfork.

Big Blockers want to use a hardfork, Small Blockers want to use optimizations/
second layers/softforks. So, what is the compromise between those two sides?

There is no compromise for that, only capitulation to one or the other.
By offering a combination of both, it defeats the main cause of the other
position. It ignores the true meaning behind this impasse. That is why this
debate will continue till capitulation or contentious hardfork.

Anyone who believes that is clearly in denial.  Sooner or later there will be a necessary change that can't be achieved via soft fork.  Hardforks can't be avoided forever, so everyone needs to stop soiling themselves at the mere thought of one.  Also, hardforks don't preclude optimisations and second layers, so you can cease that decidedly underhanded insinuation right there.  Are you seriously saying you would have opposed SegWit if it had been proposed as a hardfork?

In the event of a contentious hard fork, I suspect the narrative and rhetoric on these boards would automatically be that the miners forking away were the cause of the split, but history will judge that it takes two parties to have an argument.  Those too belligerent to be reasoned with, who had already closed their mind to anything that wasn't a softfork, would be deemed equally culpable. 

AgentofCoin
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May 18, 2017, 12:19:39 AM
 #144

Everyone keeps using the word "compromise", but no one is actually budging on their stance.  Most of the people fixated on increasing the blocksize still want an increase of at least 200% and most of the people fixated on not touching the 'base' blocksize still want 0% increase until an unspecified time in the future.  

It seems obvious when you say it, but apparently it has to be spelled out in no uncertain terms:  An actual compromise would require both camps to soften their stance a little.  Is anyone prepared to do that?  Stop drawing lines in the sand over what you won't accept and start talking about what you will accept.  And for what must be the dozenth time, the blocksize doesn't have to be a whole number and nor does it have to be static.  

There can be no compromise in this debate since it is about the hardfork
mechanism itself, not scaling. The scaling debate is only the tool currently
being used to push for a hardfork. In theory, if scaling was the only issue,
there are many different answers that already exist without using a hardfork.

Big Blockers want to use a hardfork, Small Blockers want to use optimizations/
second layers/softforks. So, what is the compromise between those two sides?

There is no compromise for that, only capitulation to one or the other.
By offering a combination of both, it defeats the main cause of the other
position. It ignores the true meaning behind this impasse. That is why this
debate will continue till capitulation or contentious hardfork.

Anyone who believes that is clearly in denial.  Sooner or later there will be a necessary change that can't be achieved via soft fork.  Hardforks can't be avoided forever, so everyone needs to stop soiling themselves at the mere thought of one.  Also, hardforks don't preclude optimisations and second layers, so you can cease that decidedly underhanded insinuation right there.  Are you seriously saying you would have opposed SegWit if it had been proposed as a hardfork?

In the event of a contentious hard fork, I suspect the narrative and rhetoric on these boards would automatically be that the miners forking away were the cause of the split, but history will judge that it takes two parties to have an argument.  Those too belligerent to be reasoned with, who had already closed their mind to anything that wasn't a softfork, would be deemed equally culpable.  

It has nothing to do with belief, it has to do with what is occurring now.
The basis for the current issue is not scaling, it is related to the hardfork
mechanism itself. You ignored what I stated, which is that there is no
compromise between two opposing forces. One must give way to the other,
like all things in life. You disagree with that.

What is delusional is thinking that there can be a middle ground between a
hard or soft fork. In almost all cases, it will need to fall under one or the other.
If not, where is this answer? Where is the middle fork? Currently, it does not
exist and thus why this debate still exists and goes in circles.

The debate is not about "no more hardforks forever", nor did I ever say such,
the issue is whether our technological level has reached the point where we can
do it now without sacrificing current security. Obviously, 10 years from now, a 2-4
MB blocksize hardfork is extremely doable and should preserve the current security
(the only issue then is possible intentional chain split as a malicious attack). The
debate is whether we should do a hardfork now, when technological advancement
has slowed or some think, stopped.

If SegWit was a hardfork, I would equally oppose it today as I do any simple
2MB hardfork. Core Devs developed SegWit in a softfork-able way for this very
purpose, to preserve the verifying nodes who do not wish to upgrade. If they had to
do it in a hardfork way, I am not sure they would have proposed it. When it was
provided as a softfork, they thought the community and miners would be thrilled.
Instead, with some major miners and some in the community, it is seen as bad since
it is not by the hardfork mechanism alone.

This shows that the issue is not scaling, but something else entirely. But interestingly,
according to recent development work, it is alleged that softforks can now be designed
to perform everything that hardforks can do, without the node loss. So we may have
learned that the hardfork/softfork mechanism is a result of our current lack of
understanding of Bitcoin and that only softforks are actually necessary throughout it's
lifespan. Hardforks in that scenario, are only used for serious emergencies where we
must accept security loss to prevent massive immediate failure.

My only point in my comment was that "compromises" may be a misunderstanding
of Bitcoin and how it was intended to function. Satoshi did not compromise and
didn't intended to create a system that needs to have compromises. There will
always be a losing party in this type of system due to the blockchain system itself.
Finding a middle path, between the hard and soft fork, if possible, would have
already occurred. What is occurring now is a slow negotiation that the community
needs to go through till they inevitably learn that it is futile and they have been
confused.

When this is all said and done, someone will give in or perform a contentious
hardfork. The term "compromise", is like Santa Claus, its what we tell the children
to keep them busy. Something will occur eventually, but a "compromise" is unlikely.

I support a decentralized & unregulatable ledger first, with safe scaling over time.
Request a signed message if you are associating with anyone claiming to be me.
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May 18, 2017, 12:36:14 AM
 #145

AgentofCoin, Thanks. I agree with basically every point made in your last two posts.

Quote
If they had to
do it in a hardfork way, I am not sure they would have proposed it. When it was
provided as a softfork, they thought the community and miners would be thrilled.

Precisely, in fact getting many people to agree to a capacity increase at all given the current environment was very difficult.  The primary selling points was that segwit was risk reduced in many ways (e.g. lowering sighashing cost), that we had other scaling tools planned (BIP152 for example), ... and that it was worth taking some risks to satisify the demands and end the drama.  Oops.

From my perspective: the community already already compromised on the part that we thought we could compromise on.  Beyond that and it's akin to demanding 'compromise' in the form of sawing a disputed infant in half.

I think it's fine and healthy that it takes a while to sort these things out.  Internet scale protocol development doesn't happen fast-- 4Byte ASNs in BGP took about a decade, and BGP is a easier to evolve than Bitcoin in many ways.

In any case, in my view, the slogan should be:

Bitcoin will not be compromised.





Bitcoin will not be compromised
The One
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May 18, 2017, 01:52:43 AM
 #146

Everyone keeps using the word "compromise", but no one is actually budging on their stance.  Most of the people fixated on increasing the blocksize still want an increase of at least 200% and most of the people fixated on not touching the 'base' blocksize still want 0% increase until an unspecified time in the future.  

It seems obvious when you say it, but apparently it has to be spelled out in no uncertain terms:  An actual compromise would require both camps to soften their stance a little.  Is anyone prepared to do that?  Stop drawing lines in the sand over what you won't accept and start talking about what you will accept.  And for what must be the dozenth time, the blocksize doesn't have to be a whole number and nor does it have to be static.  

There can be no compromise in this debate since it is about the hardfork
mechanism itself, not scaling. The scaling debate is only the tool currently
being used to push for a hardfork. In theory, if scaling was the only issue,
there are many different answers that already exist without using a hardfork.

Big Blockers want to use a hardfork, Small Blockers want to use optimizations/
second layers/softforks. So, what is the compromise between those two sides?

There is no compromise for that, only capitulation to one or the other.
By offering a combination of both, it defeats the main cause of the other
position. It ignores the true meaning behind this impasse. That is why this
debate will continue till capitulation or contentious hardfork.

Anyone who believes that is clearly in denial.  Sooner or later there will be a necessary change that can't be achieved via soft fork.  Hardforks can't be avoided forever, so everyone needs to stop soiling themselves at the mere thought of one.  Also, hardforks don't preclude optimisations and second layers, so you can cease that decidedly underhanded insinuation right there.  Are you seriously saying you would have opposed SegWit if it had been proposed as a hardfork?

In the event of a contentious hard fork, I suspect the narrative and rhetoric on these boards would automatically be that the miners forking away were the cause of the split, but history will judge that it takes two parties to have an argument.  Those too belligerent to be reasoned with, who had already closed their mind to anything that wasn't a softfork, would be deemed equally culpable.  

It has nothing to do with belief, it has to do with what is occurring now.
The basis for the current issue is not scaling, it is related to the hardfork
mechanism itself. You ignored what I stated, which is that there is no
compromise between two opposing forces. One must give way to the other,
like all things in life. You disagree with that.

What is delusional is thinking that there can be a middle ground between a
hard or soft fork. In almost all cases, it will need to fall under one or the other.
If not, where is this answer? Where is the middle fork? Currently, it does not
exist and thus why this debate still exists and goes in circles.

The debate is not about "no more hardforks forever", nor did I ever say such,
the issue is whether our technological level has reached the point where we can
do it now without sacrificing current security. Obviously, 10 years from now, a 2-4
MB blocksize hardfork is extremely doable and should preserve the current security
(the only issue then is possible intentional chain split as a malicious attack). The
debate is whether we should do a hardfork now, when technological advancement
has slowed or some think, stopped.

If SegWit was a hardfork, I would equally oppose it today as I do any simple
2MB hardfork. Core Devs developed SegWit in a softfork-able way for this very
purpose, to preserve the verifying nodes who do not wish to upgrade. If they had to
do it in a hardfork way, I am not sure they would have proposed it. When it was
provided as a softfork, they thought the community and miners would be thrilled.
Instead, with some major miners and some in the community, it is seen as bad since
it is not by the hardfork mechanism alone.

This shows that the issue is not scaling, but something else entirely. But interestingly,
according to recent development work, it is alleged that softforks can now be designed
to perform everything that hardforks can do, without the node loss. So we may have
learned that the hardfork/softfork mechanism is a result of our current lack of
understanding of Bitcoin and that only softforks are actually necessary throughout it's
lifespan. Hardforks in that scenario, are only used for serious emergencies where we
must accept security loss to prevent massive immediate failure.

My only point in my comment was that "compromises" may be a misunderstanding
of Bitcoin and how it was intended to function. Satoshi did not compromise and
didn't intended to create a system that needs to have compromises. There will
always be a losing party in this type of system due to the blockchain system itself.

Finding a middle path, between the hard and soft fork, if possible, would have
already occurred. What is occurring now is a slow negotiation that the community
needs to go through till they inevitably learn that it is futile and they have been
confused.

When this is all said and done, someone will give in or perform a contentious
hardfork. The term "compromise", is like Santa Claus, its what we tell the children
to keep them busy. Something will occur eventually, but a "compromise" is unlikely.


If everyone just followed the principles of the original whitepaper as a "Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System", instead of trying to change it into something else then there would be no "losing party." The only losers would be those trying to turn Bitcoin into .....
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May 18, 2017, 02:12:14 AM
 #147

AgentofCoin, Thanks. I agree with basically every point made in your last two posts.

Quote
If they had to
do it in a hardfork way, I am not sure they would have proposed it. When it was
provided as a softfork, they thought the community and miners would be thrilled.

Precisely, in fact getting many people to agree to a capacity increase at all given the current environment was very difficult.  The primary selling points was that segwit was risk reduced in many ways (e.g. lowering sighashing cost), that we had other scaling tools planned (BIP152 for example), ... and that it was worth taking some risks to satisify the demands and end the drama.  Oops.

From my perspective: the community already already compromised on the part that we thought we could compromise on.  Beyond that and it's akin to demanding 'compromise' in the form of sawing a disputed infant in half.

...

I just want to say for the record that I think it is sometimes possible to
negotiate and compromise on certain ideas or coding tweaks or whatever,
between developers and miners/v-nodes/etc when it could satisfy all
parties within reason. We should always strive to attempt to accommodate
different parties and incorporate them when we can, so that we can all
move forward together. But that is not an absolute.

With things like the "scaling debate/ softfork or hardfork issue" what it
really comes down to is security and nothing else, IMO. Though it is
important to try to accommodate any opposing party and attempt to bring
them back into the fold, this is not always possible. Some issues can not be
compromised on, not because one party doesn't want to or is purposefully
fucking around, but because it is a fundamental of the system.

So IMO, there are times where "compromises" are possible and should be
entertained, but this current issue is not one of them. We have reached
an important "fork in the road" in Bitcoin's history and the community
and certain parties will need to make a direction decision eventually.

I support a decentralized & unregulatable ledger first, with safe scaling over time.
Request a signed message if you are associating with anyone claiming to be me.
AgentofCoin
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May 18, 2017, 02:36:28 AM
 #148

...

My only point in my comment was that "compromises" may be a misunderstanding
of Bitcoin and how it was intended to function. Satoshi did not compromise and
didn't intended to create a system that needs to have compromises. There will
always be a losing party in this type of system due to the blockchain system itself.

Finding a middle path, between the hard and soft fork, if possible, would have
already occurred. What is occurring now is a slow negotiation that the community
needs to go through till they inevitably learn that it is futile and they have been
confused.

When this is all said and done, someone will give in or perform a contentious
hardfork. The term "compromise", is like Santa Claus, its what we tell the children
to keep them busy. Something will occur eventually, but a "compromise" is unlikely.


If everyone just followed the principles of the original whitepaper as a "Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System", instead of trying to change it into something else then there would be no "losing party." The only losers would be those trying to turn Bitcoin into .....

The blockchain system is a settlement system as designed. With settlement, there
is technically a winning party and losing party. That is what protects us from
doublespends within our system. It is not actually cash-like, but more like checks.
My statement, that you highlighted in red, refers to there being a single chain and
that there will be a winning chain and a losing chain. You could say that the blockchain
also prevents "doublechains" (in theory). So by it's nature, compromises are
not acceptable. It is one or the other.

Anyway, you could say that Satoshi actually created a P2P E-Checking System.
Because he called it "E-Cash" doesn't make it so. Sometimes he even called it "E-Gold".
So which one is it? E-Cash, E-Checks, or E-Gold? Satoshi didn't even know himself,
and said what he believed at that moment of time. He was learning with all of us and
his paper was not a final product, but the final product of his solo work. The whitepaper
was his attempt to convince others of the merit, not its perfection.

If you actually paid attention to what he wrote afterwards, instead of just the whitepaper,
you will understand that he was trying to solve larger issues and the E-Cash/Gold
component was just one little part of the whole. Sometimes his answers were great
and other times his answers ignored major faults. Whatever the correct answers are,
it surely is not "the whitepaper", since that is a 8+ year old proposal that Satoshi
prepared only for peer review and consideration. It was not perfected. For example,
the whitepaper doesn't even contain all the details about number of coins, blockheights,
halvings and etc. That all came after the whitepaper. So Satoshi wrote E-Cash in the
whitepaper, but programmed E-Gold into the protocol.

So, if you have a problem that people are not following the "principles of the original
whitepaper" you should write a PM/Email to Satoshi and ask him why he himself
violated those principles with his own first client design/protocol.

I support a decentralized & unregulatable ledger first, with safe scaling over time.
Request a signed message if you are associating with anyone claiming to be me.
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May 18, 2017, 03:37:26 AM
 #149

There can be no compromise in this debate since it is about the hardfork
mechanism itself, not scaling. The scaling debate is only the tool currently
being used to push for a hardfork.

Strictly speaking, when the miners raised the block limit they accepted, in the past, from, say, 500 KB to 1 MB, that WAS a hard fork.  Each time the miners changed the actual size of blocks they accepted to make, they applied a de facto hard fork.  A hard fork has nothing to do with what piece of code is actually compiled, it is what are the *actual* de facto rules at a given point that are applied, and whether a newly allowed block would have passed the de facto rules in the past.  When miners were making only 500 KB blocks, if ever a 1 MB block were made, it would have been rejected at that point by his peers, while that same block is now accepted.  Hence, each time the miners rose their mutually agreed-upon accepted limit on block size, that WAS already a hard fork. 
Hard forks have nothing to do with code, but have to do with what the miners actually mutually accept (of course, it must be somewhere in some form of code, they don't do it by hand).  They didn't accept 1 MB blocks 5 years ago, now they do (at least, as far as I understand).  So that clearly is a hard fork.

Also, one must understand that the reversal of every soft fork, is a hard fork.  This means that if one accepts soft forks, and one accepts the idea of "potentially going back to what it was in case of disaster", one accepts the idea of a hard fork too.

The only fundamental difference between a soft fork, and a hard fork, is that a soft fork never gives the choice to the user in the market.  If a miner majority is reached with a soft fork, other miners are FORCED to follow, and at no point, there are two chains from which a user can chose in the market and vote with his money.  With a (bilateral) hard fork, in principle, two prongs can emerge, and users can vote with their money in the market.
In other words, if you are afraid of the market, never accept hard forks.
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May 18, 2017, 04:00:43 AM
 #150

Very simply, they do NOT want on-chain scaling. In their own words, "segwit IS a compromise". We can only interpret that to mean a compromise between sensible scaling and NO on-chain scaling, which is in fact what they secretly want!

They want Bitcoin to be a settlement network, but do not have the honesty to admit this.

They cannot honestly and openly admit "yes we want to change Bitcoin from Satoshi's peer to peer cash into a settlement network" because it would be so radical that it would have a high probability of getting backlash from the community. Therefore, they have opted to be sneaky about it.

Because they want bitcoin to be a settlement network, the impasse is fine with them, perhaps even better than segwit.

Segwit represents a tiny amount of on-chain scaling designed to make it APPEAR that Core is willing to offer on-chain scaling, yet designed in a way that it will not even activate (95% consensus), and even if it does, it would be years later than appropriate.

Segwit IS their compromise. Ideally, for them, no on chain scaling occurs.

To summarize: There is no need to compromise further because no change works in their favor.
 

Sweet Jesus the replies are long on this one. I see this is a passionate topic, I'll keep it short and sweet.

It's obviously political at this point. Members are all heavily invested in btc, and decisions made about the protocol tend to preserve the wealth /interest of the board, not the populace. It's money, folks, and cronyism/greed is slowing down the innovation worse than regulation.

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May 18, 2017, 04:14:21 AM
 #151

Sweet Jesus the replies are long on this one. I see this is a passionate topic, I'll keep it short and sweet.

It's obviously political at this point. Members are all heavily invested in btc, and decisions made about the protocol tend to preserve the wealth /interest of the board, not the populace. It's money, folks, and cronyism/greed is slowing down the innovation worse than regulation.

My idea is that we simply see immutability at work.  The fact that the thing is decentralized for the moment, that Core lost its central authority, and that there's no way any more to change anything to the existing immutable protocol - until bitcoin will centralize again, maybe through a consortium of miners having majority hash rate, and there will be again a central boss of bitcoin.

What seems to be "idiotic wars", is in my opinion nothing else but the mutual antagonism that doesn't allow consensus to arise over "cheating on the rules" - something that could be called an attack, but which is also applicable to any other change to the rules: the antagonism that divides miners not to collude over "changing history on the block chain" (in other words, the "51% attack") is the same antagonism that doesn't allow them to change protocol, without an orchestrated simultaneous move, hence "protecting" the rules of the system.
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May 18, 2017, 04:22:12 AM
 #152

There can be no compromise in this debate since it is about the hardfork
mechanism itself, not scaling. The scaling debate is only the tool currently
being used to push for a hardfork.

Strictly speaking, when the miners raised the block limit they accepted, in the past, from, say, 500 KB to 1 MB, that WAS a hard fork.  Each time the miners changed the actual size of blocks they accepted to make, they applied a de facto hard fork.  A hard fork has nothing to do with what piece of code is actually compiled, it is what are the *actual* de facto rules at a given point that are applied, and whether a newly allowed block would have passed the de facto rules in the past.  When miners were making only 500 KB blocks, if ever a 1 MB block were made, it would have been rejected at that point by his peers, while that same block is now accepted.  Hence, each time the miners rose their mutually agreed-upon accepted limit on block size, that WAS already a hard fork.  
Hard forks have nothing to do with code, but have to do with what the miners actually mutually accept (of course, it must be somewhere in some form of code, they don't do it by hand).  They didn't accept 1 MB blocks 5 years ago, now they do (at least, as far as I understand).  So that clearly is a hard fork.

Also, one must understand that the reversal of every soft fork, is a hard fork.  This means that if one accepts soft forks, and one accepts the idea of "potentially going back to what it was in case of disaster", one accepts the idea of a hard fork too.

The only fundamental difference between a soft fork, and a hard fork, is that a soft fork never gives the choice to the user in the market.  If a miner majority is reached with a soft fork, other miners are FORCED to follow, and at no point, there are two chains from which a user can chose in the market and vote with his money.  With a (bilateral) hard fork, in principle, two prongs can emerge, and users can vote with their money in the market.
In other words, if you are afraid of the market, never accept hard forks.


Strictly speaking you are very wrong.
The blocksize was capped at 1MB and what you are referring to is the "soft cap"
and is neither a hardfork or a softfork. You are very wrong that a block made larger
than the soft cap would have been invalidated, in fact, some miners made larger blocks
while other still mined at the lower soft cap levels. It took weeks and weeks for the
developers to get the miners to raise the cap because they didn't want to or knew
that they could. So I don't know where you are getting this nonsense.

You are wrong in many of your statements and your interpretation of words and
events are incorrect. A softfork needs 95% miner consensus, so the other miners
that are "FORCED" are 5% acceptable loss which quickly follows. In comparison,
in a hardfork, you need 95% of Miners and Verifying nodes, which is near impossible,
since some hardfork proposals themselves directly disenfranchise verifying nodes, thus
you can not normally get high verifying node consensus. The Softfork attempts to
preserve those verifying nodes, while still allowing a new feature upgrade enforced
by the miners themselves. Needing users to vote makes no sense, since the average
user has no mechanism to vote other than to run a verifying node and that is
unnecessary for softforks since the changes in a softfork are still "within the rules"
of the system. Verifying nodes only need to vote, technically, when you add something
that violates a prior rule.

Another problem with your argument, you say that bilateral hardforks are good because
the users get to choose with their money. The problem with that argument is that it
assumes Bitcoin is like a corporation that needs customers. In reality, that is what you
may want Bitcoin to become, but that is not what Satoshi envisioned. Bitcoin has one
job to do with one chain and it is either doing it well or not. The markets have no place
with the Bitcoin protocol, only security. If the markets had the power, they would destroy
security and corrupt the system the same way they corrupted the world system with
illusions. All human markets are manipulated, yet you haven't learned that lesson from
Satoshi's idea yet. Your arguments are advocating for the degradation of Bitcoin.

I support a decentralized & unregulatable ledger first, with safe scaling over time.
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May 18, 2017, 04:45:56 AM
 #153

Strictly speaking you are very wrong.
The blocksize was capped at 1MB and what you are referring to is the "soft cap"
and is neither a hardfork or a softfork. You are very wrong that a block made larger
than the soft cap would have been invalidated, in fact, some miners made larger blocks
while other still mined at the lower soft cap levels.

Ah, I thought that it was a mutually respected rule, sorry then.  I didn't know that during the period when the "soft cap" was 500 KB, there were miners making larger blocks.  Why did miners restrict themselves then to 500 KB ?  You are saying that it is pure ignorance/incompetence on their side ?

Quote
You are wrong in many of your statements and your interpretation of words and
events are incorrect. A softfork needs 95% miner consensus, so the other miners
that are "FORCED" are 5% acceptable loss which quickly follows.

No, a soft fork doesn't need 95% miner consensus.  That is an extra mechanism that has been applied to past soft forks in bitcoin, but the dynamics of mining doesn't make that necessary.  As we saw, on litecoin, it was set at 75%.

A soft fork, by definition, is a change in *de facto protocol* that makes potentially correct blocks under the old protocol invalid under the new protocol, but is such that all potentially correct blocks under the new protocol are also correct under the old one.  For instance, black-listing an address is an example of a soft fork.  Rejecting any block that contains a transaction with that address, while before, such a block would be accepted, is typically a soft fork.

A hard fork, by definition, is a change in the *de facto protocol* that makes potentially correct blocks under the new protocol invalid under the old protocol.  There are two variants, here: bilateral (that is, the correct blocks under the old protocol will also be invalid under the new one) or unilateral (the correct blocks under the old protocol are still considered valid by the new protocol).

A soft fork, and an unilateral hard fork, are each-other's time reversals, so any undone soft fork is an unilateral hard fork (for instance, removing an address from a black list is an unilateral hard fork).

As to the needs for miner consensus for it to work dynamically, depending on the kinds of fork, we have 3 situations:

A) soft fork:
if a majority of miners applies a soft fork, then the minority of miners is forced to follow, because all old protocol blocks they will make, will end up being orphaned, as they accept the forked blocks themselves, and hence cannot build an own chain.  A minority of soft forking miners will always mine themselves on "old blocks" and hence orphan themselves out of business.    So with a soft fork, there's always only one chain, and the majority imposes its will on the minority.


B) bilateral hard fork:
Whatever the ratio of miners picking one or the other protocol, two independent chains emerge, all users get "double coins" and if exchanges allow so (list both chains), users can vote with their money ; miner revenue vs difficulty will be such, that the hash rate will adapt to the market valuations of both chains.   Bitcoin has an extra problem here for the minority chain, which is the slow difficulty adjustment, making the minority chain grow very slowly.
In this case, there's no forcing minorities: each has its own chain.  The market votes.

C) unilateral hard fork:
Only when the forkers have majority, they can split off.  If they are minority, they get orphaned because they don't build on each other fast enough.  So if the old protocol is majority, they cannot fork away.  If the old protocol is minority, they can fork away, but the old protocol can remain as an independent fork.  We are then in situation B, but the danger is that if ever the market votes for the old protocol, the new chain will be taken over at a certain point, and be entirely orphaned (even after, say, a month or so) and all transactions in the new coin are gone.  Unilateral forks are hence extremely dangerous.

In all of this, non mining nodes count for zilch.  But in B and C, USERS in the market count a lot (whether they have a full node or not).
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May 18, 2017, 04:48:10 AM
 #154

whether our technological level has reached the point where we can
do it now without sacrificing current security. Obviously, 10 years from now, a 2-4
MB blocksize hardfork is extremely doable and should preserve the current security
As someone who "supports" segwit on it's merits, and a 2Mb block increase for compromise, I have yet to see any compelling argument for this. Can someone point me to something I can read and digest that would actually accomplish that plus something that refutes that. I'm not talking about things that are filled with propaganda and ideology but solid arguments based on technical issues and facts etc.

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May 18, 2017, 05:24:57 AM
 #155

Strictly speaking you are very wrong.
The blocksize was capped at 1MB and what you are referring to is the "soft cap"
and is neither a hardfork or a softfork. You are very wrong that a block made larger
than the soft cap would have been invalidated, in fact, some miners made larger blocks
while other still mined at the lower soft cap levels.

Ah, I thought that it was a mutually respected rule, sorry then.  I didn't know that during the period when the "soft cap" was 500 KB, there were miners making larger blocks.  Why did miners restrict themselves then to 500 KB ?  You are saying that it is pure ignorance/incompetence on their side ?

No, the only rule is 1MB (protocol) and the "soft cap" is the miners own code on their
own miner. As blocks became more full, people asked the miners to raise their
"soft caps". Prior to this act, most miners didn't know they could raise their soft cap.
At this time, large miners are mining away not paying attention to the communities or
anything. They just maintain their rigs, repair them, watch them, collect the btc, and
feed their families. It is only recently that they have begun to start participating in the
communities and asserting their perceived power, which mainly comes from what some
have told them and not actual experience.



You are wrong in many of your statements and your interpretation of words and
events are incorrect. A softfork needs 95% miner consensus, so the other miners
that are "FORCED" are 5% acceptable loss which quickly follows.

No, a soft fork doesn't need 95% miner consensus.  That is an extra mechanism that has been applied to past soft forks in bitcoin, but the dynamics of mining doesn't make that necessary.  As we saw, on litecoin, it was set at 75%.

On systems as large as Bitcoin, you want something safe like 95% to ensure that no
second chain will survive. At 75%, and a contentious proposal, 25% loss is not safe
and could allow the "old chain" to survive. Maybe on litecoin that number was alright,
since there isn't billions involved plus they knew no miner would bother with a second
litecoin chain, but Bitcoin is different. We must assume there are malicious or idealistic
actors who will attempt to preserve the "old chain", 95% is the safest, allegedly.



A soft fork, by definition, is a change in *de facto protocol* that makes potentially correct blocks under the old protocol invalid under the new protocol, but is such that all potentially correct blocks under the new protocol are also correct under the old one.  For instance, black-listing an address is an example of a soft fork.  Rejecting any block that contains a transaction with that address, while before, such a block would be accepted, is typically a soft fork.

I don't know if I agree. A blacklisting as you describe doesn't need a soft or hard fork.
The miners could just have a list of UTXOs that their government deems to be illegal,
and it would be illegal for them to accept that UTXO into their blocks. Thankfully, in
this case, mining isn't fully centrlzied within one nation, so in theory, that UTXO can
be moved by a miner who is not under that country's jurisdiction.

In the event that code is added to enforce a blacklisting on all miners, I think that
might need a hardfork, but I am not sure really. I assume the code must be changes
so that miner have reference to dirty UTXOs within the protocol, which would be a
hardfork. I could be wrong though.


A hard fork, by definition, is a change in the *de facto protocol* that makes potentially correct blocks under the new protocol invalid under the old protocol.  There are two variants, here: bilateral (that is, the correct blocks under the old protocol will also be invalid under the new one) or unilateral (the correct blocks under the old protocol are still considered valid by the new protocol).

A soft fork, and an unilateral hard fork, are each-other's time reversals, so any undone soft fork is an unilateral hard fork (for instance, removing an address from a black list is an unilateral hard fork).

I agree in theory.
The difference between the two (softfork v unilateral hardfork) is that verifying nodes
do not need to upgrade under a softfork, but do need to under the hardfork.



As to the needs for miner consensus for it to work dynamically, depending on the kinds of fork, we have 3 situations:

A) soft fork:
if a majority of miners applies a soft fork, then the minority of miners is forced to follow, because all old protocol blocks they will make, will end up being orphaned, as they accept the forked blocks themselves, and hence cannot build an own chain.  A minority of soft forking miners will always mine themselves on "old blocks" and hence orphan themselves out of business.    So with a soft fork, there's always only one chain, and the majority imposes its will on the minority.


I agree in theory.



B) bilateral hard fork:
Whatever the ratio of miners picking one or the other protocol, two independent chains emerge, all users get "double coins" and if exchanges allow so (list both chains), users can vote with their money ; miner revenue vs difficulty will be such, that the hash rate will adapt to the market valuations of both chains.   Bitcoin has an extra problem here for the minority chain, which is the slow difficulty adjustment, making the minority chain grow very slowly.
In this case, there's no forcing minorities: each has its own chain.  The market votes.

I disagree. In this situation, influences outside of consensus and the markets will
come into play. There are malicious and idealistic parties who are waiting for this
opportunity. For example, malicious actors will Ddos and attack the miners and
exchanges on either chains in order to influence the markets. What the users may
actually want, can be perverted and prevented by allowing "the markets" to decide.
All markets are manipulated and will be manipulated. Basically, it would not be a fair
vote since attackers will come from all corners of the earth. In this case, we can rig it
so the least worthy chain, that the users hate and don't want, can get the most hash
and perceived value. So in this way, I think bilateral hardforks could be more
dangerous than unilateral hardforks.


C) unilateral hard fork:
Only when the forkers have majority, they can split off.  If they are minority, they get orphaned because they don't build on each other fast enough.  So if the old protocol is majority, they cannot fork away.  If the old protocol is minority, they can fork away, but the old protocol can remain as an independent fork.  We are then in situation B, but the danger is that if ever the market votes for the old protocol, the new chain will be taken over at a certain point, and be entirely orphaned (even after, say, a month or so) and all transactions in the new coin are gone.  Unilateral forks are hence extremely dangerous.

In all of this, non mining nodes count for zilch.  But in B and C, USERS in the market count a lot (whether they have a full node or not).

I disagree. Any hardfork is contingent upon both miners and verifying nodes having
high consensus. Non-mining nodes only count for "zilch" when it is a Softfork. Otherwise,
verifying nodes are a complementary consensus structure in all hardfork types.

When you talk about "users"  voting and done so through the exchanges, that vote needs
to be determined before any fork occurs, not after. Users voting after the fork has occurred
is backwards and makes no sense. Relying on the markets is an illusion since they can be
manipulated so that it seems the users want one thing, when they are all voting for another.

Satoshi created Bitcoin because these market systems are manipulatible. We can not now
fall back on these flawed systems to determine the future of Bitcoin that rejected those
old ways. It is contradictory IMO.

I support a decentralized & unregulatable ledger first, with safe scaling over time.
Request a signed message if you are associating with anyone claiming to be me.
dinofelis
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May 18, 2017, 05:33:21 AM
 #156

whether our technological level has reached the point where we can
do it now without sacrificing current security. Obviously, 10 years from now, a 2-4
MB blocksize hardfork is extremely doable and should preserve the current security
As someone who "supports" segwit on it's merits, and a 2Mb block increase for compromise, I have yet to see any compelling argument for this. Can someone point me to something I can read and digest that would actually accomplish that plus something that refutes that. I'm not talking about things that are filled with propaganda and ideology but solid arguments based on technical issues and facts etc.

I think that before even be able to discuss that, the real question should be answered, without politics, but purely on rational, logical grounds:

"what is the real power of non-mining nodes ?"

My personal stance on this, which I think I have *rationally proved* but I'm open of course to any pointing out of an error in my proof, is that the answer to this is essentially "zilch".
I put some caveats on this, and I'm not saying that running a full node is *useless*, but:

1) only for its owner (knowledge of how bitcoin is actually working, deniability of IP address vs own transactions)

2) can help network if direct internet links between users and mining pool nodes are, for one or another reason, not functioning

3) serves as some "back up memory" if ever a big catastrophy eliminates all miner nodes, to be able to "start bitcoin up again".

But as "guardians of the protocol", their power is zilch, and hence as "decentralizing power element" their influence is zilch.  

That's my position on this for the moment, not because of any politics, but because I think I established the proof of it rationally.  Maybe I'm wrong, and maybe someone can pinpoint where the proof goes wrong.  I'm not going to repeat it, I've formulated it often.

Now, this question is important, because it is this aspect which makes people say that big blocks are "dangerous for centralisation".    My idea is that before the size of the blocks becomes an issue, the REAL centralizing force, which is economics of scale in the PoW scheme, which separated bitcoin's system into a "provider and customer" model, had much, much more centralizing influence.

Indeed, any industrialized PoW transforms a crypto currency network in two separate entities:
a) a decentralized factory of block chain (the mining pools and their subcontractors, the mining hardware owners), that "produces block chain" and "sells coins on it"

b) users that use that block chain to do their transactions, and buy the coins of (a) for good money.

This is not the case for a PoS coin for instance, where there's an intimate link between coin *owners* and the produced ledger.

A PoW ledger is essentially a kind of "notary service" that is sold to people that want to "get data written down and published": this is the product that the decentralized miner industry sells, and they have their "privilege" by the hardware investment they made ; this is different from a PoS ledger, where the investment is in the system itself, and not externally, making the separation between "ledger provider" and "ledger user" impossible, as it happens on industrialized PoW ledgers.

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May 18, 2017, 05:40:07 AM
 #157

I am so confused as to why the scaling problem isn't sorted. This might put off a lot of non techno lay people entering the Bitcoin space because they are used to dealing with cash, fast in and fast out. Bitcoin has huge value but all the DEVS and Miners need to get out of their own little spaces and really think about the common good for everyone to be able to easily adopt and use Bitcoin for everyday use.

That's not going to happen anytime soon, they have no intention of doing something like that as long as they have a huge gain from the situation as it is now and I think we're all aware of that.

The bitcoin miners both from different codes including the core developers will be put to the edges and will agree to something when bitcoin is already at the brink of extinction. Later this year a new cryptocurrency will replace bitcoin if it cannot solve its internal problems. Just like bitcoin this coin has already made some move to establish fiat exchanges across the globe and it hope to replace bitcoin.

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May 18, 2017, 05:43:21 AM
 #158

Strictly speaking you are very wrong.
The blocksize was capped at 1MB and what you are referring to is the "soft cap"
and is neither a hardfork or a softfork. You are very wrong that a block made larger
than the soft cap would have been invalidated, in fact, some miners made larger blocks
while other still mined at the lower soft cap levels.

Ah, I thought that it was a mutually respected rule, sorry then.  I didn't know that during the period when the "soft cap" was 500 KB, there were miners making larger blocks.  Why did miners restrict themselves then to 500 KB ?  You are saying that it is pure ignorance/incompetence on their side ?

No, the only rule is 1MB (protocol) and the "soft cap" is the miners own code on their
own miner. As blocks became more full, people asked the miners to raise their
"soft caps". Prior to this act, most miners didn't know they could raise their soft cap.

The question here is simply: does the soft cap only apply to the own produced block, or does it also enter into account to checking which blocks are considered valid by others ?  If it is an own produced block, it is not a fork ; if it also applies to the validation rules of other blocks, it is a fork.

Quote
On systems as large as Bitcoin, you want something safe like 95% to ensure that no
second chain will survive. At 75%, and a contentious proposal, 25% loss is not safe
and could allow the "old chain" to survive.

If it is a true soft fork, no.  The 25% will not survive, it will be orphaning itself all the time, as I explained further.  95% is a wise rule, however, if you want to have no contention, but purely dynamically, 51% is enough.


A soft fork, by definition, is a change in *de facto protocol* that makes potentially correct blocks under the old protocol invalid under the new protocol, but is such that all potentially correct blocks under the new protocol are also correct under the old one.  For instance, black-listing an address is an example of a soft fork.  Rejecting any block that contains a transaction with that address, while before, such a block would be accepted, is typically a soft fork.

I don't know if I agree. A blacklisting as you describe doesn't need a soft or hard fork.
[/quote]

Of course it is a soft fork.  A block containing that transaction was valid before, and isn't any more, and will hence be rejected.  
Forking has to do with *protocol*, not with *software* per se.  It has to do with the set of accepted and non-accepted blocks, no matter what is the mechanism of acceptation, whether this is in the "core software", or an extra selection script, or whatever.  It has to do with the *actual practice* of miners that decide *on which previous block to build* and *which blocks to reject/orphan/....* (not build on it).  Whatever is the mechanism of that choice, doesn't matter.  The actual choice is what is the actual protocol.


Quote

The miners could just have a list of UTXOs that their government deems to be illegal,
and it would be illegal for them to accept that UTXO into their blocks. Thankfully, in
this case, mining isn't fully centrlzied within one nation, so in theory, that UTXO can
be moved by a miner who is not under that country's jurisdiction.

It would nevertheless be a genuine fork, and the dynamics of forking would apply.  If a majority of miners would reject all blocks containing that address, then this soft fork would be imposed upon the network, simply because if other miners (minority) make such a block (include such a transaction), the majority hash rate will not build on their block and it will be rejected/orphaned.  As the other miners do accept the black-listing miners, the "orphaned chain" will not grow, because they will continue building on the longest chain.  Hence, if 55% of miners decide to blacklist addresses, these are EFFECTIVELY blacklisted.

Quote
The difference between the two (softfork v unilateral hardfork) is that verifying nodes
do not need to upgrade under a softfork, but do need to under the hardfork.

But, as I think I pointed out, "verifying code" doesn't matter if you're not a miner.  If there's only one chain out there, you accept it, or you stop.  That's your choice as a "verifier".  You know that the unique chain out there is not in agreement with what is required by your verification, and that's it.
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May 18, 2017, 05:47:46 AM
 #159

whether our technological level has reached the point where we can
do it now without sacrificing current security. Obviously, 10 years from now, a 2-4
MB blocksize hardfork is extremely doable and should preserve the current security
As someone who "supports" segwit on it's merits, and a 2Mb block increase for compromise, I have yet to see any compelling argument for this. Can someone point me to something I can read and digest that would actually accomplish that plus something that refutes that. I'm not talking about things that are filled with propaganda and ideology but solid arguments based on technical issues and facts etc.

But as "guardians of the protocol", their power is zilch, and hence as "decentralizing power element" their influence is zilch.
I've read a lot of your posts on this and you've failed to convince me except in the case where 100% of the miners are in agreement and in opposition to a very large majority of those running full nodes.

If, for example, 75% (hash) of the miners decide to change something radical about the protocol, the full nodes can choose to reject their blocks while accepting those from 25% of the miners. Yes, the entire system is disrupted for some period of time but it was going to be anyway.

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May 18, 2017, 05:54:40 AM
 #160

I disagree. In this situation, influences outside of consensus and the markets will
come into play. There are malicious and idealistic parties who are waiting for this
opportunity. For example, malicious actors will Ddos and attack the miners and
exchanges on either chains in order to influence the markets. What the users may
actually want, can be perverted and prevented by allowing "the markets" to decide.

All this is just a matter of "the markets decide".  I try to avoid all forms of moral judgement like "fair", "malicious", etc... and I try to understand the dynamics of the system.  After all, in a trustless system, there's no notion of "fair" or anything: it is whatever happens, and "all is permitted" because nothing is to be trusted.   But then it is important to understand how such system behaves under all thinkable circumstances, as all is permitted.

So when I say "the users decide in the market", that includes all effects such as DDoS, attacks, and everything that goes with it and is the natural environment for trustless systems, because the market decides, taking into account these happenings and how the systems react to it.

Quote
All markets are manipulated and will be manipulated.

But that's part of a market, especially an unregulated one.  So that is part of the choice.

Quote
I disagree. Any hardfork is contingent upon both miners and verifying nodes having
high consensus. Non-mining nodes only count for "zilch" when it is a Softfork. Otherwise,
verifying nodes are a complementary consensus structure in all hardfork types.

I think I've argued and presented enough proof that this is not the case.  Maybe my proof is wrong, and someone can finally pinpoint an error in it.

Quote
When you talk about "users"  voting and done so through the exchanges, that vote needs
to be determined before any fork occurs, not after. Users voting after the fork has occurred
is backwards and makes no sense. Relying on the markets is an illusion since they can be
manipulated so that it seems the users want one thing, when they are all voting for another.

No, of course not.  The proof of the pudding is the eating.  Toyota didn't want a vote first before it put cars on the market, to compete with General Motors (say).  The only true vote is the one in the market.  Other votes are "free" and hence unreliable.  If you have to vote with money, you vote for real.

Quote
Satoshi created Bitcoin because these market systems are manipulatible. We can not now
fall back on these flawed systems to determine the future of Bitcoin that rejected those
old ways. It is contradictory IMO.

Satoshi cannot alter the laws of nature, and game theory.  I could just as well try to invent a system where gravity doesn't make you fall.  If something is designed to go against the laws of nature, it will do something, but it will not do what you intended.  I think bitcoin is doing something, but not what it was intended (or at least, the publicly announced intentions).  
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