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Question: Will you support Gavin's new block size limit hard fork of 8MB by January 1, 2016 then doubling every 2 years?
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Author Topic: Gold collapsing. Bitcoin UP.  (Read 1806511 times)
Melbustus
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December 31, 2014, 01:07:06 AM
 #19181


According to this site, by 2014-09-10 there were less than 650'000 addresses in the blockchain with 0.1 BTC or more:...

Addresses are not persons, of course; but I believe that this number is a plausible upper bound for the number of "bitcoiners" (excluding people who just tried it but did not "adopt" or invest in it).

...


Coinbase alone has 2,100,000+ user-wallets, which will map pretty darn close to 1:1 with actual people (due to their KYC/AML). Obviously that says nothing about how many people actually have funds in their wallets, but Coinbase's off-chain user holdings probably do account for a significant percentage of the overall userbase that a pure blockchain analysis will miss. While it'd be nice if all users directly controlled funds on-chain, I still count Coinbase users will non-zero balances as "bitcoin users".

Furthermore, I'd count someone as a bitcoin user if they've made a bitcoin transaction in the past 60 days or so.

I think the user-count is likely 1M-3M.


Bitcoin is the first monetary system to credibly offer perfect information to all economic participants.
But Bitcointalk & /r/bitcoin are heavily censored. bitco.in/forum, forum.bitcoin.com, and /r/btc are open.
Best info on Casascius coins: http://spotcoins.com/casascius
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adam3us
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December 31, 2014, 01:09:53 AM
 #19182

Adam, you've been selectively reading my posts Smiley

Well yes I have, to save time, you talk too much Smiley  Now if you focussed on constructively and impassively analysing the technology and implications, maybe it'd progress faster?

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in no way do i want to prevent innovation esp in the area of more tx's, anonymity, or anything related to better performance.  i merely want them to occur on MC

That is not realistically practical, that is exactly what motivated sidechains as an extension mechanism.
So you wont be against the idea of an extension mechanism per se, just the next bit:

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so as not to disrupt mining incentives unpredictably and to avoid what i believe are dubious economic assumptions that could hurt Bitcoin overall. and so as not to disadvantage those of us who invested with those assumptions in mind.

You know, not that I am concretely proposing it, but one could shift the reward as a consensus rule into a singleton sidechain.  Or some proportion of it.  (Simple enough to do: use a peg transaction in the coinbase, and make it a sidechain consensus rule that this be the case).  That might address your incentive concern.

Secondly bitcoin transaction fees will need to surpass subsidy soon enough.  At that point there is little difference.

Bitcoin main needs to plan for that day anyway.

The incentive protection for bitcoin is not absolute: it just raises the cost.  If someone can commit a bigger theft (via double-spending etc) they can pay for the lost mining during their failed double-spends before success.  Bitcoin is already vulnerable to the same pattern of attack, and at times we've had the bad situation of near 50% miners, and certainly 2-3 miners that are overwhelming, and yet it doesnt happen.  Clearly there is meta-incentive at work.  It works because the honest majority want it to work, and miners particularly collectively have $500m+ of equipment at risk.


Another possibility to think about is some people talk about litecoin or whatever as backup plan to bitcoin in case of centralisation or catastrophic bug.  Well a sidechain can fulfil that kind of role also.

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there is also no evidence that any of the altcoins are gaining on Bitcoin.  i just put up a graph of Litecoin and Mastercoin yesterday that show they are dying compared to Bitcoin.  

Yep.

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as for Daniel's video, you're late, as i already posted about their podcast and commented on it 5d ago here:  
https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=68655.msg9945975#msg9945975

I posted the article http://bitcoinist.net/the-two-ideologies-in-bitcoin/ which came before the podcast and covers more topics & is clearer IMO.

Adam

hashcash, committed transactions, homomorphic values, blind kdf; researching decentralization, scalability and fungibility/anonymity
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December 31, 2014, 01:28:48 AM
 #19183

Also I dont think even statis vs change captures the situation.  If you like stasis, keep your coins on bitcoin main; if others like cool features they can use them on chains that support them.  Why is this a conflict?

I think the conflict is that if one views bitcoin-plus-sidechains as being an economic system, then "just don't use it" is not a valid response. Events in one part of the system may have consequences (including unforeseen consequences) in another part of the system.

[...] sort of bitcoin-backed-coin model [federated peg] that involves some sort of trusted intermediary/intermediaries (what the paper calls the federated model). Nothing prevents someone from making a bitcoin-backed-altcoin [...] Putting aside the rather large issue of backer trust, this is equivalent to a side chain.

I can see the argument.  But wouldnt that have effects on main chain also?  Wouldnt it be more prone to technical and policy / moral hazard failure?

You can view all the off-chain transactions (must be > 90% offchain) that are based on trust, governance and audit as also part of the economic system.  Prime example Mtgox.  Dont get much bigger than that $500m loss.

I think the economic system is at greater risk the longer this offchain model persists.  One of the motivations of some of the people interested in sidechains is to increase transaction volume, smart-contract capabilities to have the tools to migrate the security critical parts of the trust & governance aspects onto the chain - ie replace that trust and governance (which is prone to human failure) with smart-contracts (which are less so).

Its also kind of embarrassing and stupid given that the point of bitcoin smart-contracts is to avoid that risk!  Sort of because of tx volume, missing a few features and largely transaction volume limits, reinventing the mistakes of the past centuries early banking governance failures, with young people with no banking experience running $500m exchanges with basically no separation of duty and probably dumb security also.  Thats also a bad idea for inviting regulation - regulators are trying to protect users from losing money.

You can directly see that people are running scared of losing their money in anything that they are trusting with bitcoin.  Eg delays for wire transfers to clear because they dont want to leave money on exchanges with uncertain governance and security competence.  Thats not good for bitcoin either.

I think sidechains are a net win if its a choice between offchain or on sidechain.  Even if some people are focussed on slow velocity investment, the people that do want them, those transactions will go somewhere and offchain will be it until someone works to solve it.

Feel free to help also.  We're doing plumbing at this stage.  Early adopters could see uptake as people move to on(side)chain offerings in preference to offchain.

Adam

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cypherdoc
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December 31, 2014, 01:31:54 AM
 #19184

Instead of dismissing my arguments by framing them as having some sort of agenda, perhaps you'd care to address the myriad issues I, and others btw, have voiced in this thread.

actually I wasnt assuming you had an agenda, or at least I couldnt figure out what it might be.

My agenda is simple: bitcoin is awesome, and I want to defend and improve it.

we certainly agree there.  and just so you know, i own no altcoin (except for 2 physical LTC smoothie so generously gave me earlier this year) and have no investment in any company or start up.  i simply own bitcoin and am an early adopter from Jan 2011.

oh, and btw, i am honored you are infusing your views here on my thread as i truly believe that inventing the POW scheme is simply awesome.  but why you missed Bitcoin earlier than me is a conundrum!
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I have a real concern about the philosophical direction you're trying to take Bitcoin in and the highly risky economic effects it may have.

I presume by philosophy you mean stasis vs change?  I read your view to be stasis.  Nothing about bitcoin must change ever (other than bug fixes).  Maybe thats over simplifying.  Or maybe your arguments are shifting or dancing around to prod people into extending the argument (sorry thats the impression you give at times).

my view has shifted somewhat but only in the area of block size expansion and well before October's WP release.  JR had alot to do with that.  it's still possible that block size expansion will never occur and in that sense i see Bitcoin evolving to become merely a global reserve currency used to settle international end of day settlements btwn nations.  similar to gold's role years ago but instantaneous and real time.  that would still be a great thing to happen to Bitcoin.  but as i said, Bitcoin does indeed have much potential as a payment platform and for micro tx's.  so if block expansion can be agreed to, then so be it.  i could live with that too as it would also be great for Bitcoin.

but as i said above, i would like to see these monetary innovations applied to the MC so as not to disrupt mining assumptions.  the 2d delay and unpredictable consequences of moving BTC to a less secure scBTC introduce friction in my mind and thus risk despite whatever potential innovation awaits on the SC's.
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The sequence I saw was people trying to pressure bitcoin core to make changes to support their various ideas and pet projects.  And bitcoin core not being able to accommodate them due to resources, and significantly risk.

My pet project that caused me to notice the risk of change clearly, was homomorphic encrypted values, which I thought were pretty cool as they completely hide transaction values and are still validatable.     https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=305791.0  (They do nothing about hiding which address is paying which, thats harder and takes zerocash which has to much novel crypto to deploy on main IMO).

And actually the earlier one was committed transactions which try to prevent transaction censorship even in the face of miners with dangerously high hashrate.  https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=206303.15 (there's a so far unresolved problem with that, but if it could be made to work, thats pretty cool in my book also).

So I suppose one example for your philosophy question is would you be against the above two changes being in bitcoin?  One improves privacy and the other improves decentralisation properties.  I presume most people on bitcointalk like those properties.  How about cypherdoc?

those projects are new to me, but yeah, homomorphic encryption sounds pretty cool.  anything to increase privacy.   the 2nd project, not as cool as it is pretty clear to me that pool hashing % rates are evening out in a beautiful display of the Nash Equilibrium so i don't think tx meddling is necessary Smiley
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Next realise there's basically zero chance of those going in, and I approve of that.  Its too risky, and what we need even more than cool features to improve bitcoin, is to not lose everyones bitcoins (including cypherdocs hoard, which I am very happy he has, good for him).  i dont but thats my fault for not installing the alpha client when Satoshi emailed me about it in Jan 2009.  I bought a few but I guess my buy in price average is close to current.  I still think bitcoin is the coolest thing and has awesome potential.

And another example is how do we do bitcoin protocol upgrades.  There are limitations to live upgrades, some things are not soft-forkable also.  We'd have lower risk if we could have a live beta.  That was the first proposed use for one-way pegs (precursor to GMaxwell et al two-way peg).  Presumably you'd think a one-way peg for the purposes of software upgrade could be good - lower risk of failure during bug fixes and software modularisation.

An example is its hard to fully fix malleability which causes problems in some scenarios.

if it's so hard to get changes to the protocol, why are we seeing useful updates such as header syncing or constant time?  maybe they are more trivial but if something is truly valuable and necessary to get into the protocol, i'm sure the community would rally around that.  maybe the community didn't value your proposals nearly to the degree you did? (no offense intended).  we all have to live with rejection of our ideas sometimes.

no offense, but it's also hard to know how much this Blockstream IPO was affecting the minds of your core dev group over this last year when core protocol progress could have been made.  not saying this happened but ppl like me wonder about this.
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Maybe also zerocash itself.  Kind of risky bleeding edge crypto, but really good privacy.  I would be against that going into main due to the novel crypto risk unless it was somehow constrained to those opting in to it.
But that kind of sucks, people who want it cant use it.  You and I and everyone is censoring their desired feature.  Thats not permissionless innovation.  But we are justified because of the risks in fact.  A securely firewallable extension mechanism enables permissionless innovation.  Otherwise you just see more feature coins.

and there is nothing wrong with feature coins other than i think they will all fail while cheating ppl at the same time.  at least they're competing on a level playing field with Bitcoin by not asking for source code changes that benefit themselves.  well, maybe they did ask, but they sure aren't getting them yet they plow forward.  and if one of them produces some innovation that is useful, by all means adopt it into Bitcoin.  there's nothing wrong with that process.  yeah, alot of ppl are going to get hurt and lose money along the way but who is a for-profit Blockstream to force  a source code change to eliminate them all?  that is the other way to look at it.
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I am not sure if you are aware sidechains are nearly possible with zero changes to bitcoin.  Its already programable via the script language.  It may even be doable with zero changes with some chained contorted big script to validate compact SPV proofs.

great, then do it if it doesn't involve a source code change.  i have no problem with that.
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Anyway its not like blockstream even existed when a bunch of core devs got excited about the possibility of improving on the above situations with a generic extension mechanism so I encourage you to separate out arguments about risk or imagined intent of blockstream from concerns about the change.  eg pretend the change is just that group of developers, same people who've been coding bitcoin for years.  (Blockstream basically is that group of developers, but thats a separate discussion!)

i'll be sure to try and do that, but yeah, i have multiple problems with SC's and Blockstream so it is hard to focus on one w/o jumping to another.  i do worry that SC's take away from allowing Bitcoin to focus on Sound Money.  you guys have advocated using SC's for all sorts of speculative assets.  that worries me and i think it is a distraction.  i also don't trust the economic assumptions behind the 2wp.  there's no precedent for that and to assume it has no feedback effects on MC is presumptious, imo.  those SC's are not the MC and it will be unrealistic to assume they will be 100% MM'd.  but then you'll say "don't use it".  that's fine for me but there will be ppl who only hear 1:1 100% backed by your original BTC".  those ppl can be duped.  just look at our first shark:  Truthcoin.
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Note also the 51% takes all coins risk depends on the peg script.  Its possible to limit that problem and place the risk on the people doing the arbitrage or transfers by forcing the person returning coins to put up a bounty in main-chain bitcoins equal to the exchange which they forfeit if their transfer is proven fraudulent by a chosen % of the sidechain.  There can also be caps and time-adaptive delays (longer for more bitcoin).  Its a programming language, the op_spv is just an opcode to simplify the coding of one part of it, validating the compact-proofs.

incredibly complex.  i have no doubt you can do it.  but does it make sense and will it bring value when presented to the market.  no one knows, including me.  but i do think it is a distraction and that the market won't like it. 
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Hopefully we got past the misinterpretation of Konrad Graf's article, to see that the discount is for time-preference only, and the security firewall will work fine against a malicious or dud sidechain; caveat emptor, and look at the credibility of people writing wallets, chains and cryptocurrency.

he wrote that article the day your WP came out, or close to it.  it would be interesting to see how his view has changed if any given all the discussion since.
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If you dont put your coins into a chain they are not at risk.  Why would you want to censor someones ability to have zerocash, homomorphic value, faster transactions, more TPS, native share/color support, snark contracts?  Wouldnt those be good things for bitcoin?  I personally thought it'd be pretty cool to see a new wave of bitcoin centric innovation.

Also I dont think even statis vs change captures the situation.  If you like stasis, keep your coins on bitcoin main; if others like cool features they can use them on chains that support them.  Why is this a conflict?

Adam


i object and disagree with how you and Greg are now presenting/framing this argument. 

when i first got into Bitcoin back when, i was "sold" on the concept that it was "trustless".  i didn't have to trust any man or group of men (sorry women) to do the right thing.  the open source nature of the protocol was such that nothing would get done unless there was a consensus.   given my study of the rules at that time, i liked what i saw and made an agreement with myself that i would invest accordingly to my own risk tolerance.  i bought those principles hook, line, and sinker. i view Bitcoin as digital gold which is the principle behind this long thread.  but better.  no one can transmute gold atoms into SCgold.  they just are.   

now, i see in Blockstream, a for-profit group of 2 core devs and 3 of the top committers potentially being influenced by a $21M investment from ppl who expect at least a 10x return on their money from SC development for probably anyone willing to pay.  and it's clear this model depends on insertion of the spvp which i view as a transmutation of Bitcoin for the benefit of your company at the expense of altcoin and the platforms like Ethereum, Bitshares and CP.  i think that's unfair.  this guy over on Reddit stated pretty clearly exactly how i feel:

http://www.reddit.com/r/Bitcoin/comments/2qtdxi/thoughts_on_sidechains_by_lukas_ryan/cn9txk8?context=3

so i ask you, Adam, why should i do a 180 degree flip in what i was sold back then and now "trust" you to do what's right for Bitcoin when you have a fiduciary duty to do what's right for Blockstream?
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December 31, 2014, 01:35:16 AM
 #19185

I am trying to find a thread or forum with a currently active discussion of sidechains.  Is this thread the only one?
go a couple pages back you'll find hundreds in a row
Thanks.  Indeed, I found a couple of threads with more pertinent titles, but they seem to be dead, nothing like this one.

Should this thread be split and moved to develpment perhaps?

start here and come forward.  it was the day of the WP release:

https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=68655.msg9292756#msg9292756
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December 31, 2014, 01:43:54 AM
 #19186

so i ask you, Adam, why should i do a 180 degree flip in what i was sold back then and now "trust" you to do what's right for Bitcoin when you have a fiduciary duty to do what's right for Blockstream?
Despite all promises made, my question was never answered:

https://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/2k3u97/we_are_bitcoin_sidechain_paper_authors_adam_back/clhni79
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December 31, 2014, 01:54:50 AM
 #19187

Extraordinary. $0.03 per GB.  There will be no blockchain storage problems:

http://www.zdnet.com/article/seagate-offers-low-cost-8tb-hard-drives/

100,000 users =  32 GB

7,000,000,000 user = 2,000,000 GB every year  =>  2,000,000 * $0.03 = $60k /year

however Ripple and Ethereum fix this problem
there was never a storage problem ive said many times that the efficiency of storage is increasing faster than the size of the blockchain by many factors
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December 31, 2014, 01:55:59 AM
 #19188

so i ask you, Adam, why should i do a 180 degree flip in what i was sold back then and now "trust" you to do what's right for Bitcoin when you have a fiduciary duty to do what's right for Blockstream?
Despite all promises made, my question was never answered:

https://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/2k3u97/we_are_bitcoin_sidechain_paper_authors_adam_back/clhni79

furthermore, imo for global adoption to occur, Bitcoin must be free from all conflicts of interest.  it has evolved to the level of a public good.
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December 31, 2014, 02:12:03 AM
 #19189

...
so i ask you, Adam, why should i do a 180 degree flip in what i was sold back then and now "trust" you to do what's right for Bitcoin when you have a fiduciary duty to do what's right for Blockstream?

I seem to recall at least Maxwell pro-actively disavowing this supposed fiduciary duty to do what's right for Blockstream if it also does not happen to be what right for Bitcoin.  He gets to pick up his marbles and go home if he doesn't like how things are going (where as most people have to leave their marbles in such situations except for vested stock and the like.)  This is a novelty as far as I know.  And one I'm liking!  If this is simply a marketing gimmick it worked on me.  I've a favorable opinion both of the devs who write this into their contract, and the investors and managers of Blockstream who at least allow it as a term.

Of course, as always, I happen to see sidechains as not only 'right' for Bitcoin but basically Bitcoin's best hope for success.  Naturally this goes some distance toward helping build my confidence in the enterprise as well, and makes it quite understandable why this novel contract agreement bullet-point is acceptable to all.  It would be fascinating to see how the construct stands up in U.S. court (but I hope it doesn't come to that, of course, and am not expecting it.)


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December 31, 2014, 02:14:57 AM
 #19190

...
so i ask you, Adam, why should i do a 180 degree flip in what i was sold back then and now "trust" you to do what's right for Bitcoin when you have a fiduciary duty to do what's right for Blockstream?

I seem to recall at least Maxwell pro-actively disavowing this supposed fiduciary duty to do what's right for Blockstream if it also does not happen to be what right for Bitcoin.  He gets to pick up his marbles and go home if he doesn't like how things are going (where as most people have to leave their marbles in such situations except for vested stock and the like.)  This is a novelty as far as I know.  And one I'm liking!  If this is simply a marketing gimmick it worked on me.  I've a favorable opinion both of the devs who write this into their contract, and the investors and managers of Blockstream who at least allow it as a term.

Of course, as always, I happen to see sidechains as not only 'right' for Bitcoin but basically Bitcoin's best hope for success.  Naturally this goes some distance toward helping build my confidence in the enterprise as well, and makes it quite understandable why this novel contract agreement bullet-point is acceptable to all.  It would be fascinating to see how the construct stands up in U.S. court (but I hope it doesn't come to that, of course, and am not expecting it.)



you're missing the point.  the act of leaving by those devs requires a conscious act and decision to do the "right" thing.  how can we keep trying to sell Bitcoin to the world as a "trustless" system when we have to "trust" Blockstream devs to do the right thing?
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December 31, 2014, 02:24:44 AM
 #19191

Also I dont think even statis vs change captures the situation.  If you like stasis, keep your coins on bitcoin main; if others like cool features they can use them on chains that support them.  Why is this a conflict?

I think the conflict is that if one views bitcoin-plus-sidechains as being an economic system, then "just don't use it" is not a valid response. Events in one part of the system may have consequences (including unforeseen consequences) in another part of the system.

[...] sort of bitcoin-backed-coin model [federated peg] that involves some sort of trusted intermediary/intermediaries (what the paper calls the federated model). Nothing prevents someone from making a bitcoin-backed-altcoin [...] Putting aside the rather large issue of backer trust, this is equivalent to a side chain.

I can see the argument.  But wouldnt that have effects on main chain also?  Wouldnt it be more prone to technical and policy / moral hazard failure?

Possibly and that was largely my argument about being inevitable. Inevitable doesn't necessarily mean good (or bad), but something that must be accepted as a matter of reality.
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December 31, 2014, 02:36:20 AM
 #19192


you're missing the point.  the act of leaving by those devs requires a conscious act and decision to do the "right" thing.  how can we keep trying to sell Bitcoin to the world as a "trustless" system when we have to "trust" Blockstream devs to do the right thing?

Sorry dude, I cannot imagine you making that strained argument with a straight face in light of the fact that we already rely on 'trust' in Bitcoin itself in exactly the same manner.  Lots of people are scratching their head about where you are coming from due to obviously nonsense statements like this.

This is especially the case in light of the fact that Gavin is paid, and relatively handsomely, by what a plurality of folks seem to now recognize (so it seems) as a loathsome institution which downsizes mainly when crooks get caught and belatedly kicked out.  It is no stretch to consider the Bitcoin Foundation as being blatantly crooked insofar as it takes funds and supports frauds like inputs.io, and just as bad, seems highly prone to such conspiracies as 'red-listing' which is near universally considered an abomination.  All under the cloak of quasi-secrecy, and god only knows what happens in the real core of the organization.

Even having two shit-bag organizations fighting one another is preferable to having only one, and I see a high likelihood that Blockstream will be anything but.  My only hope is that Blockstream stands up to the Bitcoin Foundation machinations and call them out as needed.  And hopefully bury them eventually.


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December 31, 2014, 02:43:40 AM
 #19193


you're missing the point.  the act of leaving by those devs requires a conscious act and decision to do the "right" thing.  how can we keep trying to sell Bitcoin to the world as a "trustless" system when we have to "trust" Blockstream devs to do the right thing?

Sorry dude, I cannot imagine you making that strained argument with a straight face in light of the fact that we already rely on 'trust' in Bitcoin itself in exactly the same manner.  Lots of people are scratching their head about where you are coming from due to obviously nonsense statements like this.

This is especially the case in light of the fact that Gavin is paid, and relatively handsomely, by what a plurality of folks seem to now recognize (so it seems) as a loathsome institution which downsizes mainly when crooks get caught and belatedly kicked out.  It is no stretch to consider the Bitcoin Foundation as being blatantly crooked insofar as it takes funds and supports frauds like inputs.io, and just as bad, seems highly prone to such conspiracies as 'red-listing' which is near universally considered an abomination.  All under the cloak of quasi-secrecy, and god only knows what happens in the real core of the organization.

Even having two shit-bag organizations fighting one another is preferable to having only one, and I see a high likelihood that Blockstream will be anything but.  My only hope is that Blockstream stands up to the Bitcoin Foundation machinations and call them out as needed.  And hopefully bury them eventually.



gimme a break.  you trying to smear Gavin for being paid by a NON-PROFIT organization is pure blasphemy.  he's paid a salary in BTC which is probably quite modest by ordinary standards.  AND he doesn't have any stock to try and pump or investors to please.  to think he has anything to do with any of the things you're talking about is ridiculous.  he's as apolitical as one gets and we all should be thankful he's lead.  you're still that little dog who nips at my trouser bottoms.
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December 31, 2014, 03:13:36 AM
 #19194


gimme a break.  you trying to smear Gavin for being paid by a NON-PROFIT organization is pure blasphemy. ...

The Bitcoin Foundation is 'non-profit' in the same way that nearly every other 'non-profit' is these days.  That is to say, most participants are profiting nicely in one way or another.  At least at the higher levels.  There are often plenty of drones in the lower levels who make it all possible and never knew what hit them.  And an even greater number who want nothing to do with the scammy organization but get sucked into the vortex in one way or another.

BTW, being called a blasphemer is one of the highest complements one could bestow on me.  So, Thanks!


you're still that little dog who nips at my trouser bottoms.

You are still the broken clock who is right twice a day.  And looks like 2014 won't be one of those periods.  Perhaps 2015 will turn that frown up-side-down for ya.  I wonder how many other people followed Goat's lead and cashed in for gold a year ago.  They'll be smiling now I dare say.


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December 31, 2014, 03:31:05 AM
 #19195


gimme a break.  you trying to smear Gavin for being paid by a NON-PROFIT organization is pure blasphemy. ...

The Bitcoin Foundation is 'non-profit' in the same way that nearly every other 'non-profit' is these days.  That is to say, most participants are profiting nicely in one way or another.  At least at the higher levels.  There are often plenty of drones in the lower levels who make it all possible and never knew what hit them.  And an even greater number who want nothing to do with the scammy organization but get sucked into the vortex in one way or another.

BTW, being called a blasphemer is one of the highest complements one could bestow on me.  So, Thanks!


you're still that little dog who nips at my trouser bottoms.

You are still the broken clock who is right twice a day.  And looks like 2014 won't be one of those periods.  Perhaps 2015 will turn that frown up-side-down for ya.  I wonder how many other people followed Goat's lead and cashed in for gold a year ago.  They'll be smiling now I dare say.



gold?  u kidding me?  flat over the year.  they'd have been better off going to the USD.

long term, you're toast.
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December 31, 2014, 03:37:38 AM
 #19196

...
You are still the broken clock who is right twice a day.  And looks like 2014 won't be one of those periods.  Perhaps 2015 will turn that frown up-side-down for ya.  I wonder how many other people followed Goat's lead and cashed in for gold a year ago.  They'll be smiling now I dare say.

gold?  u kidding me?  flat over the year.  they'd have been better off going to the USD.

long term, you're toast.

Not necessarily.  I went to USD and paid a shit-load of taxes.  Had I found a way to convert directly into gold it's not clear that my hit would have been so heavy.

BTW, please forgive me if I don't hang on your every word with respect to what the future holds.


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December 31, 2014, 03:51:30 AM
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BTW, please forgive me if I don't hang on your every word with respect to what the future holds.



no, i'm quite satisfied with you nipping at my trouser bottoms.
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December 31, 2014, 03:53:56 AM
 #19198

I personally haven't been following the SC discussion these past months but the first thing that comes to mind for me is that any SC for bitcoin would need its own infrastructure. If that infrastructure were not to be as high level as bitcoin (MC) OR it were to be too centralized then having a SC would be pointless as it would be less secure in one form or another.

Not sure if people see this (the majority). If not, then many are going to get burned.

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December 31, 2014, 04:08:34 AM
 #19199

OK, since this is the "de facto" sidechain thread, here is some serious trolling:

Having read the whitepaper, the grayblogpost, and several lightblueforumposts, I am currently convinced that the sidechains "project" is 100% marketing, with no technical contents whatsoever.  

Specifically, I claim that there is no functionality that sidechains would enable that could not be provided by a project totally independent of the blockchain.  The only (possible, far from certain) advantage of implementing something as a  sidechain would be the transfer of prestige from the bitcoin project to that something.

I am very skeptical of the future of bitcoin as investment and as a currency for e-commerce, but I admit that the bitcoin protocol provides some non-trivial and interesting functionality.    However, paradoxically, its value lies not so much in what one can do to the blockchain, but in what one cannot do (unless one has 51% of the hashing power):

* One cannot insert a transaction with an input that is not an output of an earlier trasaction, or a coinbase;
* One cannot use the output of a transaction more than once as input to another transaction;
* One cannot insert a transaction whose output total is greater than the input total;
* One cannot insert a transaction whose inputs are not properly signed;
* One cannot add a new block that does not have the crypto signature of the previous block and the required proof of work;

and so on.  It is because of these "cannots"  that the blockchain has a non-trivial functionality.

Now, the sidechains proposal describes many wonderful things that one could do with them.  But it does not specify a single thing that a sidechain protocol cannot do, other than the trivial constraint that it cannot return more bitcoins to the blockchain than it took from it.  

The process of transfering bitcoins between the main chain and the side chain is formally equivalent to sending the bitcoins to a blockchain address owned by the sidechain admins, and later from that address to some other address specified by the sidechain admins.  Thus the only constraint above is trivially enforced by the bitcoin protocol as it is (which the proponents seem to admit).

As far as I can tell, since there is no clearing or overseeing of the sidechains by any entity, the sidechain can do absolutely anything at all,  even immediately destroy the keys that would allow "return" of the bitcoins to the blockchain.  It can create its own tokens from nothing,  rewite its operations history, impose arbitrary fees, steal from its clients, use broken cryptography, whatever.  Nothing prevents the "sidechain" from being centrally managed.  Nothing prevents it from being a reincarnation of MtGOX, with Willy and all.  Nothing prevents it from being, by all objective criteria, an altcoin totally independent from the blockchain.

I propose the following experiment: take the whitepaper, or any paper that discusses sidechains, and replace the word 'sidechain' everywhere by the word 'something'.  Would it make any difference?

I see this project as a desperate attempt by faithful bitcoiners to save the "bitcoin industry" from looming collapse, in two ways:

(1) by trying to co-opt the best altcoin projects, so that instead of them saying "bitcoin is broken and cannot be fixed, use our coin instead" they will say "use our coin, which, among other advantages, builds on and is backed by bitcoin, the 'gold of the internet'"  

(2) by trying to convince investors that bitcoin is worth investing in, even if it is failing as a payment system and may be superseded by other altcoins, because it will be the 'gold of the internet'.

I believe that this marketing effort is 'evil' because it is trying to make people think that bitcoin will be contributing functionality to the sidechains, when in fact it is only contributing prestige.  Just as every nation that issued a paper currency found that pegging it to gold or silver was only a marketing gimmick, more a nuisance and embarassment than a concrete advatage, any successful project that starts as a sidechain will almost certainly detach from bitcoin, for the same reasons.

So, fire away.[/troll]

Academic interest in bitcoin only. Not owner, not trader, very skeptical of its longterm success.
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December 31, 2014, 04:32:51 AM
 #19200

PS. The sidechains project may have also another goal:

(3) give hope to those who own large quantities of bitcoins that, if bitcoin is to be superseded by some other cryptocoin, there will be a way to move their fortune to that cryptocoin, at a fixed exchange rate.

Academic interest in bitcoin only. Not owner, not trader, very skeptical of its longterm success.
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