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Author Topic: MasterCoin: New Protocol Layer Starting From “The Exodus Address”  (Read 446751 times)
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October 22, 2013, 03:52:04 AM
 #1401

ok now that I have some mastercoins, are there anything I should be aware of when using bitcoin-qt for regular btc transaction? like avoid using that address to send or receive btc, etc?
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October 22, 2013, 04:34:43 AM
 #1402

MasterCoin is very vulnerable to copycats technically, but much less vulnerable socially. There is nothing to prevent somebody from forking our code and doing their own thing. However, in order to be successful they would have to offer something that MasterCoin does not offer. As soon as they did that, MasterCoin would almost certainly add that feature too.
Thank you. As long as people can participate with Mastercoin cheaply you are probably right. If it's possible to run a stock, bond, or whatever cheaper with a clone it will be done and market share will be lost. If it costs the same in both, I believe the momentum of Mastercoin will keep it alive. I do think you'll see a competitor soon so I guess we will see! I wish your project all the luck!

Personally I see colored coins and Mastercoins being the next huge thing for Bitcoin. It will change the way we track assets! Keep up the good work!

I fail to understand why users would be attracted to opt for a cheaper clone. Let's say 1MSC=1BTC; 1BTC=$100; 1oz gold=$1,000. Using Mastercoin, to create a GoldCoin would require 10MSC in escrow to track the price of an ounce of gold. If a cheaper SuperCoin (SPC) clone trades at 100SPC=1BTC, it would require 1,000SPC in escrow to create an equivalent SuperGoldCoin to track the price of an ounce of gold. So what is the advantage? I see none, unless my understanding of how the MSC escrow principle works is wrong. I stand corrected.

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October 22, 2013, 08:05:47 AM
 #1403

Normally I try to stick to discussing the technical parts of Mastercoin but I want to offer my opinion about the whole clone discussion.

We are developing a protocol, we are not developing an investment vehicle. This might not be a popular opinion but in the end we want to build technology that enriches peoples lives by offering features Bitcoin currently lacks like distributed exchanges.

People will be able to clone Mastercoin and there is nothing we can do about that or even want to do about it.

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October 22, 2013, 09:35:57 AM
 #1404

Normally I try to stick to discussing the technical parts of Mastercoin but I want to offer my opinion about the whole clone discussion.

We are developing a protocol, we are not developing an investment vehicle. This might not be a popular opinion but in the end we want to build technology that enriches peoples lives by offering features Bitcoin currently lacks like distributed exchanges.

People will be able to clone Mastercoin and there is nothing we can do about that or even want to do about it.
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October 22, 2013, 09:51:17 AM
 #1405

Normally I try to stick to discussing the technical parts of Mastercoin but I want to offer my opinion about the whole clone discussion.

We are developing a protocol, we are not developing an investment vehicle. This might not be a popular opinion but in the end we want to build technology that enriches peoples lives by offering features Bitcoin currently lacks like distributed exchanges.

People will be able to clone Mastercoin and there is nothing we can do about that or even want to do about it.

From the technical standpoint, you're spot on; and it's indeed a noble task you and the other devs are performing. However, due to the fact that a hard limit was put on the very small quantity of MSC created within a very small window, dacoinminster has strategically turned this into an investment monster. If the intention was purely to "enrich peoples lives by offering features Bitcoin currently lacks", then there should not have been a time limit for sending BTC to the Exodus address to obtain MSC. If that window did not exist, then people could convert BTC to MSC any time they wish to use these new Mastercoin features as if it were native to Bitcoin. In this case MSC and BTC will always be at par and the investment incentive for MSC would have been non-existent.


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October 22, 2013, 10:10:06 AM
 #1406

The OP_RETURN patch for transaction metadata was just merged into bitcoin/bitcoin.git.

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October 22, 2013, 10:18:54 AM
 #1407

I am happy with 600% returns in two months

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October 22, 2013, 10:29:00 AM
 #1408

That's exactly how I see it. Because its tracking the price or real world assets/commodity's, and it requires real value to function as an escrow there is exactly zero benefit to a cheaper coin/clone. It's like buying infinitecoin and saying screw BTC, your an ifc billionaire. You just have more digits, and it takes more of them to equal the same value. Mastercoins first mover status holds more weight than I think is being realized. The value is already here. The funding is already here. The talent is already here. The momentum is already here. Taking this into consideration, what serious investor is going to put their money into a clone when they are already invested or can invest in MSC?

Well, you assume that Mastercoin will be perfect.

But what if a copycat will offer features which Mastercoin doesn't have?

Yes, in theory, Mastercoin could copy whatever improvements copycat has. But in practice, it just doesn't work this way.

It is very hard to change a distributed protocol: if you change it in a way which isn't backwards-compatible, you have to do a hard fork, that is, all client software needs to be upgraded.

This is hard to do for a number of reasons:

  • you need to modify many different pieces of software
  • some of them are no longer maintained
  • you need to make sure that all users read the announcement that they need to update their software by a certain date

I believe that because of the way Mastercoin is designed (Mastercoin transactions are not validated by miners; model relies on a global state), pretty much every change is a hard fork. So improving Mastercoin is hard and disruptive.

Add to this that some changes can be controversial... Suppose, you change how escrow-backed currencies work. But people already use them, and they won't like the fact that changes can potentially weaken currencies they own.

Also, don't forget that Mastercoin Foundation will run out of money at some point, but a copycat will get funding from investors.

So, to summarize, copycat can start over and do things the right way using funding it got, while changing Mastercoin is too complex and expensive at that point.

OK, anyway, why would ordinary people choose copycat? It is possible to move all transactions into a side-chain and thus avoid all Bitcoin tx fees. So it will have lower tx fees.

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October 22, 2013, 12:06:34 PM
 #1409

Normally I try to stick to discussing the technical parts of Mastercoin but I want to offer my opinion about the whole clone discussion.

We are developing a protocol, we are not developing an investment vehicle. This might not be a popular opinion but in the end we want to build technology that enriches peoples lives by offering features Bitcoin currently lacks like distributed exchanges.

People will be able to clone Mastercoin and there is nothing we can do about that or even want to do about it.

I actually agree with your opinion that it is about the protocol. But the protocol requires an escrow and cloning might break the protocol if the value of Mastercoins becomes 0.

As long as Mastercoins can serve it's function as an escrow then competition wont be a bad thing. The competitor to Mastercoin could also have their clone work as an escrow but in either case even the clones would have a higher price than BTC because it would have to.

The only problem would be if the clones release infinite amount of coins and at a price of 0, in my opinion it wouldn't even work technically. To sum up my opinion, if it doesn't work as an investment vehicle then it doesn't work at all because Mastercoin by design is built around escrow in such a way that it requires Mastercoins to be worth a lot.

Now if Colored Coin works better somehow and is somehow free of course we'd all switch to it, but it wouldn't be able to have escrow unless something of value is used.


From the technical standpoint, you're spot on; and it's indeed a noble task you and the other devs are performing. However, due to the fact that a hard limit was put on the very small quantity of MSC created within a very small window, dacoinminster has strategically turned this into an investment monster. If the intention was purely to "enrich peoples lives by offering features Bitcoin currently lacks", then there should not have been a time limit for sending BTC to the Exodus address to obtain MSC. If that window did not exist, then people could convert BTC to MSC any time they wish to use these new Mastercoin features as if it were native to Bitcoin. In this case MSC and BTC will always be at par and the investment incentive for MSC would have been non-existent.

No amount of technical magic can produce value from nothingness. Value is only transferred from one thing to another. Even in the case of Bitcoin value isn't created from nothing. The math and protocol did not give value to Bitcoin alone, but the services, products, and the computing resources dedicated to mining produced the value.

So we need to see Mastercoin as an abstract object which we can inflate with value. This inflated value gives weight to that abstract object. Then we put that abstract object on a scale and we use that object to measure it's weight/density against everything else. So it is a requirement of the Mastercoin protocol that Mastercoins be very valuable (the most valuable object in that closed system) because that is all Mastercoins exist to do.

To say we shouldn't be concerned about it as an investment vehicle? What exactly is supposed to power the user currencies if it's not the value of Mastercoin held in escrow? If the Mastercoin value were to go too low then you cannot do as much with it. This rule applies to clones as well, so the clones should want to be valuable too.

Since we require that for Mastercoin to work (or really for any clone to work), then even the clones would have to be over 1:1 with Bitcoin to be useful at all. If it's not over 1:1 with Bitcoin then why not just use Bitcoins for that purpose?

The reason we can't use Bitcoins for that purpose is because Bitcoins cannot adopt the functions of Mastercoin and keep the functions of Bitcoin. Colored Coin is an attempt but it's not going to be able to match the capabilities of Mastercoin.

Mastercoin can work because it gives the community something to spend on. The mad rush to buy into Mastercoin will power up Mastercoins, the protocol, and make it bigger and heavier on the scale. The bigger and heavier it is on the value scale the more useful it is (the more value density it has) as an escrow. And if people buy Mastercoins directly with cash, gold or physical items then it adds even more weight/density to the scale and powers it up to function even better as an escrow.

Value of Mastercoin --> Value of user currencies -> value of Mastercoin. It's a loop where value is just transferred back and forth to create an exchange and it is a closed loop and by my understanding it has to be a closed loop.

I don't know how Colored Coin will offer escrow. Someone will have to explain if it can even do it. But if it does then at some point we will have to add value to it in some organized fashion. So are we going to be buying Colored Coins to feed the escrow or what?

I don't think just writing code produces value. People have to be willing to work for those coins, or sell something for them, or trade their car for them, and when it's an escrow then imagine houses, cars, private islands and mansions held in escrow vs an escrow with a lot less stuff in it. Which one would make a better protocol and be better for users?

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October 22, 2013, 02:04:24 PM
 #1410

A request for whoever maintains the wiki, can we have a full wiki with all the technical details in one place? I know there is a whitepaper but shouldn't all of that be on the wiki along with updates to the specification? It is changing too fast and is becoming hard to keep up with where Mastercoin is now or is going.

Better organized documentation will make it easier to write code for this project.

@dacoinminster
dillpicklechips mentioned that a potential threat to Mastercoin is that a bunch of alt clones could be made which offer free Mastercoins, piggybacking off the infrastructure and development of the original Mastercoin in an attempt to drive the value of Mastercoins down to 0. Is this attack feasible and can anything be done to prevent it if it is?

My understanding of the Mastercoin protocol is that initial value has to be in the Mastercoins in order for the escrow to work.


MasterCoin is very vulnerable to copycats technically, but much less vulnerable socially. There is nothing to prevent somebody from forking our code and doing their own thing. However, in order to be successful they would have to offer something that MasterCoin does not offer. As soon as they did that, MasterCoin would almost certainly add that feature too.

Potential investors will have to decide for themselves how likely a copycat is to be successful. The thought experiments involved in such scenarios are almost entirely social, not technical, and are heavily influenced by network effects (the reason it is so darn hard to unseat eBay as the king of auctions, even though making an auction website is fairly trivial).

edit: And yes, you need something of value stored in escrow for the escrow-backed currencies to work. You couldn't use a "free" currency for this.


when you start attributing value of some real world stocks/options to MSC this will put you and bitcoin blockchain clearly in the jurisdiction of the big regulators, is this your goal?  Cool  /\many thanks and looking wild!

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October 22, 2013, 02:27:21 PM
 #1411

So I sent 5 btc to the exodus address back in the buying month.

How do I recieve my mastercoins?


Here is the transaction.

https://blockchain.info/tx/0c1d774d553b03343f38ca51624d9bb08068c6de074f6319947617631726b0e3
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October 22, 2013, 02:32:53 PM
 #1412

You 'received' your Bitcoins when you send the payment. You can see your coins here.

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October 22, 2013, 02:37:23 PM
 #1413

You 'received' your Bitcoins when you send the payment. You can see your coins here.

Thanks Tachikoma. Im guessing I cant move these coins correct? We are waiting for infrastructure to be coded or what?

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October 22, 2013, 02:38:25 PM
 #1414

You can move them. There are some prototype wallets and you can always use the reference Bitcoin client to send transactions. It won't be super easy though Smiley

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October 22, 2013, 02:42:16 PM
 #1415

Maybe someone can help me out with this issue here.
I sent 10 BTC pretty early to the Exodus address with this transaction

http://blockchain.info/tx/b23037c9e680f0f7033f547bc1ddcb7eb08f8170bf7be221d90ad1f21050e2b5

the wallet i sent with using bitcoin-qt was
https://masterchest.info/lookupadd.aspx?address=1589KFRBj95mUZvjoyhTDv9xp89EpHSdh8 has 0 MSC in it.

But in the transaction another wallet was credited with the right amount MSC, and I don't seem to own that wallet.  Can someone tell me what went wrong.
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October 22, 2013, 02:43:59 PM
 #1416

The output with the highest amount of BTC contributed gets the MSC. In your case this is 1Hkjo5N1CLb7XmUtCp4xWRder81CRfpdNd. Most likely this is a change address. You still have the private key for that address in all likelihood. Which client did you use for this transaction?

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October 22, 2013, 02:46:31 PM
 #1417

Should I just hold on to them for now? I dont think I want to sell them but am not up to date on whats going on with mastercoin right now
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October 22, 2013, 02:50:00 PM
 #1418

The output with the highest amount of BTC contributed gets the MSC. In your case this is 1Hkjo5N1CLb7XmUtCp4xWRder81CRfpdNd. Most likely this is a change address. You still have the private key for that address in all likelihood. Which client did you use for this transaction?

I used bitcoinqt, how do I do a transfer to the main address and how do i find the private key for the change address?
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October 22, 2013, 02:55:18 PM
 #1419

Should I just hold on to them for now? I dont think I want to sell them but am not up to date on whats going on with mastercoin right now

I'm not in the position to give you advise about your investment, that's up to you.

The output with the highest amount of BTC contributed gets the MSC. In your case this is 1Hkjo5N1CLb7XmUtCp4xWRder81CRfpdNd. Most likely this is a change address. You still have the private key for that address in all likelihood. Which client did you use for this transaction?

I used bitcoinqt, how do I do a transfer to the main address and how do i find the private key for the change address?

You can use dumpprivkey from the console to get the private key for that address. You can use the advisor from J.R. to build a transaction that will send the MSC to a address you prefer.

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October 22, 2013, 03:06:52 PM
 #1420

Tachikoma, we got an opposite situation with the masterchest and the mastercoin explorer..  Masterchest didn't pick up the transaction.

I have sent 10msc to this address in this transaction - http://mastercoin-explorer.com/transactions/4db845e3264b0f141be2b4d11e620ef3fcc6619826d0bb831e0ac2ec7eb881e9

but masterchest doesnt show it - https://masterchest.info/lookupadd.aspx?address=13FHqVZAmkmqW5zFUpqGMHFoGJffx5rqgf
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