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Author Topic: Clarification: Miners can veto pretty much everything EXCEPT the proof-of-work  (Read 2932 times)
Icoin
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July 27, 2013, 09:48:18 AM
 #21

This discussion is missing one key factor; There are varous chains that are generated trough merged mining. That means you can mine several chains in the same time with the same hashspower, thats not possbile for scrypt.

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hazek
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July 27, 2013, 09:57:15 AM
 #22


Obviously, this veto power is owned only by the miner finding a block. If you don't or can't find a block, your decisions are inconsequent.


This is 100% false.


Any block found can be rejected as valid by any full node and so any full node has veto power over what is a legitimate block. Please stop spreading nonsense.

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

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July 27, 2013, 03:56:17 PM
 #23


Obviously, this veto power is owned only by the miner finding a block. If you don't or can't find a block, your decisions are inconsequent.


This is 100% false.


Any block found can be rejected as valid by any full node and so any full node has veto power over what is a legitimate block. Please stop spreading nonsense.

That's not the same thing at all.
(And has already been discussed when talking about the support of the majority of the network.)
If the nodes and miners had exactly the same decision power for everything, then the network wouldn't be secured by any POW.

Please stop taking every sentence out of context.
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July 27, 2013, 04:25:19 PM
 #24

Great thread, I wish I would have thought of it.  Wink

I think many of you are taking things out of context or trying to make it more than what the OP was getting at. The feeling/attacks around here is the same as a BTC Bull Long being a bit attacked because he is a BTC Bear short-mid term. Don't shoot the messenger and don't lose site of the message. It is better that we all know the rules. That is the point - period/full stop/Punkt.

I don't believe what Frozenlock said about the miners not having a say regarding the POW is in question. It is better off that we know it.

-I agree though, that there is no danger anytime soon of the POW being changed. I don't think anyone here said anything to the contrary.
-I also agree that there is no chance that a move to LTC would take place due to Scrypt, we would just integrate that (or a combination) into BTC. No sense at all in dropping your investment, some of the infrastructure, etc. just to change POW.

I am starting to get a little involved in mining, and personally, I'd "give up" my 15% BTC investment (% in mining) in it if I thought it was good for BTC. Again, I don't think we are near any situation warranting that.

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July 27, 2013, 04:58:36 PM
 #25

OP, do you remember the BIP 16/17 debates? No change could be made until there was a consensus on which method was favorable. Tycho and Slush were the most important players in that because they controlled the majority of the hash rate. Tycho was the holdout but agreed to implement BIP 16 after a consensus of other pool operators was reached. The debate lasted a long time and Bitcoin survived because it's in the best interest of all pools to ensure the continuing value of Bitcoin. That whole debate fiasco (even the lead devs appeal to the people) convinced me that Bitcoin could survive major changes to the protocol even with a poisonous person like LukeJr doing his best to screw it up.

When you say miners you do realize your not talking about a ragtag collection of individuals but instead are talking about a handful of people on this list, right? http://imgur.com/gQh5bGH As far as I know, EclipseMC was the only pool that had a democratic vote over BIP 16. I see nothing to be concerned with at all but can appreciate that you are attempting to warn people about a fear that you have with the best of intentions.

I can't say it any better than this:

"He ought to find it more profitable to play by the rules, such rules that favour him with more new coins than everyone else combined, than to undermine the system and the validity of his own wealth." ~ Satoshi Nakamoto

tl;dr
I believe the handful of people that are responsible for the security and stability of the system will continue to ensure its survival in spite of those on the inside that can and are willing to do harm to it and have seen this actually happen.

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July 27, 2013, 06:58:54 PM
 #26

OP, do you remember the BIP 16/17 debates? No change could be made until there was a consensus on which method was favorable. Tycho and Slush were the most important players in that because they controlled the majority of the hash rate.

That's the point I'm trying to make:
Miners have a really important weight when comes the time to decide to change something in the network EXCEPT in regards to the proof-of-work.
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July 27, 2013, 09:42:44 PM
 #27

Sure if some kind of forked with a different PoW were released the existing ASIC miners would not be in control of it or really be able to touch it in any way.  Their is a 99% chance that unmodified BTC just keeps chugging along, so all you would be doing is creating a new coin which has millions of coins in it that now belong to everyone already holding BTC, a situation that can only be as massive dumping opportunity.

But the main reason this won't happen is that a Scyrpt coin with massive hashing power already exists and the people mining it have no interest in helping to save ASIC miners from themselves.  Indeed the collapse of SHA coins generally and BTC in particular would presumably enrich them, so their is no potential miner pool for this fork.  The only reasonable or remotely likely scenario is for mixed hash mining, which preserves the use of ASICs but encourages GPU miners to return to BTC by giving them a cut of the daily coin production.  Personally though I think its possible that new coins (Netcoin most likely) will introduce mixed hashes first and BTC wont even consider such a thing until it's in a very desperate situation.

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July 27, 2013, 11:06:03 PM
 #28

OP, do you remember the BIP 16/17 debates? No change could be made until there was a consensus on which method was favorable. Tycho and Slush were the most important players in that because they controlled the majority of the hash rate.

That's the point I'm trying to make:
Miners have a really important weight when comes the time to decide to change something in the network EXCEPT in regards to the proof-of-work.

Satoshi wasn't Jesus. In fact, he wasn't even a superman coder. He left some pretty frigging big holes in the system that any half assed hacker could use to walk right through the back door. These have been slowly plugged with each new release because everyone wants the system to survive. I guess "miners" is too generic a term for me. Pool network sysops and core developers can and do change anything that needs changing. This can INCLUDE the hashcash POW system. If they wanted to get together and make a change they could propose it and all agree that it's necessary that we change the hashing algorithm. What I'm trying to tell you is that any change that takes money out of the pockets of the people in control will not happen by consensus. Mining isn't really decentralized, although it is distributed among a few large pools. No pool sysop or dev is going to allow a value losing proposition to be implemented or their Bitcoin life is over. If you want to worry about something, worry that an ever decreasing number of people are running full network nodes because they prefer on-line wallets and SPV clients. I run a full node 24/7 because that concerns me.

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July 28, 2013, 03:47:30 PM
 #29

You can't just change "Bitcoin" because you can't stop the old/existing fork from running.  All you can do is fork the network.  

Once again because this seems to be a reality that is misunderstood.

"Bitcoin" is by consensus the protocol as it exists today.  You can fork that protocol but you can't force a change to that protocol.


That greatly limits the types of changes which will be accepted.  Many people (myself included) never want to see a permanent split for any reason unless absolutely unavoidable.  So if you (or the GPU miner's alliance) propose a fork (and yes ANY breaking change is a fork) that switches the hashing algorithm I (and many others) won't support it.  A permanent fork would be massively disruptive, would destroy value, and would split the resources of the community.   I would only change sides if I felt doing so would help to kill off one of the forks.

BTW I no longer mine and probably never will so this isn't some personal view to protect my own profit margins.  It is just that having two "Bitcoins" each calling themselves "Bitcoin" and supported by a large group of people would be a worst case scenario.  It is chaotic, will hamper adoption, and ultimately everyone losses.

It is highly unlikely (bordering on nearly impossible) that a core element of Bitcoin will be changed.

By a core element I mean things like:
1) Transactions are irreversible (even in cases of obvious fraud or theft)
2) Coins never "expire", there is no such thing as recycling coins (which is just another form of reversibility).
3) The network computes difficulty every 2016 blocks, has an expected time between blocks of 10 minutes.
4) Consensus in disputes (double spends) is enforced by a proof of work using the SHA-256 algorithm
5) There will never be more than 21M coins and the block subsidy schedule will be followed (50 BTC halving every 210K blocks)

The only scenarios I could see where a large enough consensus forms (among miners, bitcoin holders, merchants, developers, service providers, exchanges, etc) to change the hashing algorithm is either
a) Bitcoin is continually 51% attacked
b) a flaw in SHA-256 is found making preimage attacks possible

Essentially the network changes because not changing likely means a complete loss of all value and utility.

I hate to say it but you have described an excellent reason for a mass fork, so people can pick up cheap bitcoins...! this was sorta demonstrated as an effective way to lower btc price earlier this year

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