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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?
1.  yes
2.  no

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Author Topic: Gold collapsing. Bitcoin UP.  (Read 1922865 times)
tvbcof
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July 01, 2015, 04:30:31 AM
 #28001

Its steganography to hide a bitcoin txn from a human inside a hidden channel.  But its so simple to hide from a packet inspection engine I wouldn't even call it steganography... for example the "image" downloaded could look like random bits to a person (obviously not a meaningful image) but the packet inspection engine would not be able to determine that.

We need to act soon, because if the 5 Eyes has their way (and they are almost there) then the world will accept that HTTPS means encryption but in fact it does not. Then the NWO will say that any data that is encrypted (i.e. random) but not done with HTTPS is prohibited on the internet. The public is almost to the point of gleefully agreeing.

That would hamper business greatly.  Almost everything I did, for instance, was over ssh/ssl.  It would take years and billions of dollars to re-write the work of countless engineers who've done likewise.

The next hand which would be played would be to mandate the use of core ssl which had a (known) backdoor.  I could not honestly say that I would have difficulty compliling it in and thus not needing to re-write my tools however.

The hand past that would be trying to find a safe home for the core network and stego.  One of Adam Back's memorable quotes here on this thread IIRC went something like "at the margins steganography wins."  The trouble is that if Bitcoin has moved beyond what is possible to do at these margins, we lose.


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iCEBREAKER
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July 01, 2015, 05:03:25 AM
 #28002

if we see blocks fill up and the network starts functioning poorly, we are going to see a change pushed out far quicker then any of us ever imagined.

Agreed.  We'll know when it's "eventually" when we see it.

The difference between bad and well-developed digital cash will determine whether we have a dictatorship or a real democracy.  David Chaum 1996
"Monero" : { Private - Auditable - 100% Fungible - Flexible Blocksize - Wild & Free® - Intro - Core GUI - Podcats - Roadmap - Dice - Blackjack - Github - Android }
MoneroForCash.com  |  Buy and sell XMR near you  |  Easymonero.com  |  Bitsquare.io - Decentralized XMR Exchange  |  Buy XMR with fiat
Fungibility provides privacy as a side effect.  Adam Back 2014

Bitcoin is intentionally designed to be ungovernable and governance-free.  luke-jr 2016
Blocks must necessarily be full for the Bitcoin network to be able to pay for its own security.  davout 2015
Blocksize is an intentionally limited resource, like the 21e6 BTC limit.  Changing it degrades the surrounding economics, creating negative incentives.  Jeff Garzik 2013


The raison d'être of bitcoin is trustlessness. - Eric Lombrozo 2015
It is an Engineering Requirement that Bitcoin be “Above the Law”  Paul Sztorc 2015
Resiliency, not efficiency, is the paramount goal of decentralized, non-state sanctioned currency -Jon Matonis 2015

Bitcoin is intentionally designed to be ungovernable and governance-free.  luke-jr 2016

Technology tends to move in the direction of making surveillance easier, and the ability of computers to track us doubles every eighteen months. - Phil Zimmerman 2013

The only way to make software secure, reliable, and fast is to make it small. Fight Features. - Andy Tanenbaum 2004
cypherdoc
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July 01, 2015, 01:24:54 PM
 #28003

Yes, they lose 79% of the fees used to do this but overall it might work out in their favor.

They would be giving their money away to other miners thus decreasing their relative hashrate in a downward toilet bowl spiral for themselves. Illogical.

No, spam fees are minimal or even 0. Regular users have to exceed those fees to fit into a limited 1MB block. F2pool wins blocks 21%of the time. Depending on how high they can drive up these fees compared to the minimal spam fees they lose 79% of the time, it could be profitable.

Your mistake is you assume 21% is a constant, but as they drive up fees and giving 79% of the increase away, they drive up the relative resources of the other miners thus driving down their 21% in a spiral. Even if they increase their profitability, it isn't sustainable.

You're probably right on that one.

Let's try this one: non economic actor decided to spam persistently at little cost to them as blocks get close to being filled by real activity, say starting like where we are right now, at the 50-60% level. Fees for regular users skyrocket making use untenable.
cypherdoc
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July 01, 2015, 02:01:18 PM
 #28004

for anyone with any respect left for marcus_of_augustus, take a look at this:

https://www.reddit.com/r/Bitcoin/comments/3bpbqv/woohoo_check_out_the_size_of_block_363270/csofmu6

[–]marcus_of_augustus 2 points 7 hours ago
 
Do they still give gold stars for 5 year olds?
You should be very careful with all those cold wallets, things could go very badly if family and friends are centralising trust in one questionable opsec practise.

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lunarboy
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July 01, 2015, 03:14:54 PM
 #28005

for anyone with any respect left for marcus_of_augustus, take a look at this:

https://www.reddit.com/r/Bitcoin/comments/3bpbqv/woohoo_check_out_the_size_of_block_363270/csofmu6

[–]marcus_of_augustus 2 points 7 hours ago
 
Do they still give gold stars for 5 year olds?
You should be very careful with all those cold wallets, things could go very badly if family and friends are centralising trust in one questionable opsec practise.

permalinkembedsaveparentreportgive goldreply

I used to, but his tone has changed over the last 4 years. I'm not even convinced it's the same person on the other end. Certainly a lot more bitter and hostile.
rocks
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July 01, 2015, 05:02:05 PM
 #28006

Not sure i follow.

Right now we could be having a situation where f2pool is spamming the network with TX's paid to itself which raises everyone's fees of which they will mine 21%of the time in proportion to their current hashrate. Yes, they lose 79% of the fees used to do this but overall it might work out in their favor.
From the perspective of a Bitcoin user, every possible thing that can go wrong with Bitcoin can be categorized into one of two failure modes:

  • A payment you belive to be valid, isn't (double spend)
  • You are unable to perform a payment that you want to perform (denial of service)

All a user cares about how certain they can be that their balance is valid, and that they are able to spend their coins.

Before we can talk intelligently about how an attacker might reduce the number of miners and/or the number of nodes, we first need to establish why the attacker would do this, i.e. the ways in which an attacker can benefit from performing double spending or denial of service attacks.

Take selfish mining as an example. This is not an attack that directly affects Bitcoin users.

It may be possible for an attacker to solve more blocks than their share of the hashing power would initially suggest, but that in and of itself doesn't make your balance invalid or prevent you from spending your coins. It only affects Bitcoin users indirectly, to the extent that double spending or DoS attacks are easier if the attacker successfully reduces its competition.

Exactly, great way to put it.

This is what is being missed in the centralization fear mongering. Because of the way Bitcoin is structured even with further centralization it is still relatively easy for SPV light wallets to verify for themselves the validity of a payment to an address they control. The two ways to attack this are either 1) block re-orgs which require 51% style attacks or 2) creating false header chains (hard) plus making sure the SPV wallet can not connect to a single honest node (very hard).

Centralization also does not make denial of service attacks more likely. Even with more pool centralization SPV light nodes can connect to honest miners to include transactions in their blocks.

The 1MB limit will become in itself become a denial of service attack, so far it is the only real threat right now.
Peter R
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July 01, 2015, 05:08:44 PM
 #28007

From the perspective of a Bitcoin user, every possible thing that can go wrong with Bitcoin can be categorized into one of two failure modes:

  • A payment you belive to be valid, isn't (double spend)
  • You are unable to perform a payment that you want to perform (denial of service)

Exactly, great way to put it.

+1.  Justus, I've been reading some of your work and I really like your push to clearly and precisely define the cryptocurrency terms we're using.  Here's what I had jotted down yesterday, which sort of jives with the two points you made above:

   Bitcoin is decentralized if no entity exists with the ability to costlessly double-spend or bar valid transactions from the blockchain.

Thoughts?

Run Bitcoin Unlimited (www.bitcoinunlimited.info)
justusranvier
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July 01, 2015, 05:12:26 PM
 #28008

This is what is being missed in the centralization fear mongering. Because of the way Bitcoin is structured even with further centralization it is still relatively easy for SPV light wallets to verify for themselves the validity of a payment to an address they control. The two ways to attack this are either 1) block re-orgs which require 51% style attacks or 2) creating false header chains (hard) plus making sure the SPV wallet can not connect to a single honest node (very hard).
I'm actually fairly annoyed that I have to be the one to create and publish a realistic and accurate Bitcoin threat model, because trying to create a privacy threat model is enough work on its own, and there are plenty of #bitcoin-wizards who could do as well or a better of a job.

Plenty of people have the ability put out accurate and objective information that could clear away the FUD and let us have a rational debate, but nobody else is apparently willing to do so.
cypherdoc
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July 01, 2015, 05:59:59 PM
 #28009

Big dump going on in $DJT right now:

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July 01, 2015, 06:11:40 PM
 #28010

here's just to show that as far as my position goes, it has never been just about bigger blocks or Gavin/Mike vs gmax/Adam.  it's always been primarily about financial conflict of interest from within core dev and the concept behind SC's:

https://www.reddit.com/r/Bitcoin/comments/23fr63/bitcoin_20_unleash_the_sidechains/cgwt2nz
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July 01, 2015, 06:37:20 PM
 #28011

here's just to show that as far as my position goes, it has never been just about bigger blocks or Gavin/Mike vs gmax/Adam.  it's always been primarily about financial conflict of interest from within core dev and the concept behind SC's:

https://www.reddit.com/r/Bitcoin/comments/23fr63/bitcoin_20_unleash_the_sidechains/cgwt2nz

I'm enjoying the epic Yoda-vs-Vader drama between Gavin the G-Man and Dr. Backamoto.

On Sunday, Adam reminded everyone why he is basically Bitcoin's CTO.  The best bit:

Quote

LOL..SO R3KT   Cheesy

Clearly Satoshi's "eventually" deadline for scaling BTC to Visa+Gold+Fiat+StarbucksGiftCard+BusToken levels comes some time after implementing duplex micropayment channels.

The difference between bad and well-developed digital cash will determine whether we have a dictatorship or a real democracy.  David Chaum 1996
"Monero" : { Private - Auditable - 100% Fungible - Flexible Blocksize - Wild & Free® - Intro - Core GUI - Podcats - Roadmap - Dice - Blackjack - Github - Android }
MoneroForCash.com  |  Buy and sell XMR near you  |  Easymonero.com  |  Bitsquare.io - Decentralized XMR Exchange  |  Buy XMR with fiat
Fungibility provides privacy as a side effect.  Adam Back 2014

Bitcoin is intentionally designed to be ungovernable and governance-free.  luke-jr 2016
Blocks must necessarily be full for the Bitcoin network to be able to pay for its own security.  davout 2015
Blocksize is an intentionally limited resource, like the 21e6 BTC limit.  Changing it degrades the surrounding economics, creating negative incentives.  Jeff Garzik 2013


The raison d'être of bitcoin is trustlessness. - Eric Lombrozo 2015
It is an Engineering Requirement that Bitcoin be “Above the Law”  Paul Sztorc 2015
Resiliency, not efficiency, is the paramount goal of decentralized, non-state sanctioned currency -Jon Matonis 2015

Bitcoin is intentionally designed to be ungovernable and governance-free.  luke-jr 2016

Technology tends to move in the direction of making surveillance easier, and the ability of computers to track us doubles every eighteen months. - Phil Zimmerman 2013

The only way to make software secure, reliable, and fast is to make it small. Fight Features. - Andy Tanenbaum 2004
rocks
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July 01, 2015, 07:00:47 PM
 #28012

This is what is being missed in the centralization fear mongering. Because of the way Bitcoin is structured even with further centralization it is still relatively easy for SPV light wallets to verify for themselves the validity of a payment to an address they control. The two ways to attack this are either 1) block re-orgs which require 51% style attacks or 2) creating false header chains (hard) plus making sure the SPV wallet can not connect to a single honest node (very hard).
I'm actually fairly annoyed that I have to be the one to create and publish a realistic and accurate Bitcoin threat model, because trying to create a privacy threat model is enough work on its own, and there are plenty of #bitcoin-wizards who could do as well or a better of a job.

Plenty of people have the ability put out accurate and objective information that could clear away the FUD and let us have a rational debate, but nobody else is apparently willing to do so.

I think plenty of people have been doing so. The problem is since their is no "Bitcoin organization" none these accurate voices are speaking from any position of authority and instead just get drowned out. And if you view the core devs as the closest thing to a Bitcoin organization, then the fact that some of them are the ones spreading FUD makes it twice as hard.

It is very admirable that Satoshi stepped back after Bitcoin got going (and has yet to cash out his coins). However I think it would have been much better if as he was leaving he wrote and communicated what he thought the long term direction should be along a variety of aspects. For example from his writing I think he took it for granted that he thought the 1MB should be raised over time and that bitcoin should be structured so that most people could work directly with the MC. A simple 5 pages could have communicated a lot. None of it would be binding and he would have stated that this is what he wanted but people now decide. But by doing this it would later be easier for people to refer back to the original vision in a clear manner.

The problem is Satoshi left without explicitly clear long term direction. The result has been schism over how Bitcoin should evolve. Personally I am fine with that because it makes it harder for change Bitcoin at all, but the problem is there were a few basic changes that were needed to achieve his vision that now are hard to do.
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July 01, 2015, 07:24:28 PM
 #28013

I think it would have been much better if as he was leaving he wrote and communicated what he thought the long term direction should be along a variety of aspects.

The problem is Satoshi left without explicitly clear long term direction.

Nope.  Satoshi is a libertarian and believes in spontaneous order, not central planning.

The difference between bad and well-developed digital cash will determine whether we have a dictatorship or a real democracy.  David Chaum 1996
"Monero" : { Private - Auditable - 100% Fungible - Flexible Blocksize - Wild & Free® - Intro - Core GUI - Podcats - Roadmap - Dice - Blackjack - Github - Android }
MoneroForCash.com  |  Buy and sell XMR near you  |  Easymonero.com  |  Bitsquare.io - Decentralized XMR Exchange  |  Buy XMR with fiat
Fungibility provides privacy as a side effect.  Adam Back 2014

Bitcoin is intentionally designed to be ungovernable and governance-free.  luke-jr 2016
Blocks must necessarily be full for the Bitcoin network to be able to pay for its own security.  davout 2015
Blocksize is an intentionally limited resource, like the 21e6 BTC limit.  Changing it degrades the surrounding economics, creating negative incentives.  Jeff Garzik 2013


The raison d'être of bitcoin is trustlessness. - Eric Lombrozo 2015
It is an Engineering Requirement that Bitcoin be “Above the Law”  Paul Sztorc 2015
Resiliency, not efficiency, is the paramount goal of decentralized, non-state sanctioned currency -Jon Matonis 2015

Bitcoin is intentionally designed to be ungovernable and governance-free.  luke-jr 2016

Technology tends to move in the direction of making surveillance easier, and the ability of computers to track us doubles every eighteen months. - Phil Zimmerman 2013

The only way to make software secure, reliable, and fast is to make it small. Fight Features. - Andy Tanenbaum 2004
cypherdoc
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July 01, 2015, 07:35:28 PM
 #28014

i think it's hilarious that /u/nullc has tried to stir up this conspiracy around several of the members in this thread in regards to Spinoffs.

i haven't clicked on that thread in what must be over a year now, yet we got Blockstream supporters tallying up #'s of posts as some sort of evidence.  i think i'll go over there after this just to find out the last time i posted just so i can embarrass them a little more the next time they bring it up.  the first time was /u/nullc when he stopped by here a month or so ago.  i had no idea what he was gabbing about at the time.  i've kinda lost interest in the concept altho i think Peter R had a good concept at the time.  the Blockstream crowd seems to think we're gonna release a spinoff if they get their SC's or LN network up or something.  TBH, i don't even understand the FUD and am not even going to bother trying to.  they're just immature and must be pulling their hair out over there.
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July 01, 2015, 07:42:03 PM
 #28015

i think it's hilarious that /u/nullc has tried to stir up this conspiracy around several of the members in this thread in regards to Spinoffs.

i haven't clicked on that thread in what must be over a year now, yet we got Blockstream supporters tallying up #'s of posts as some sort of evidence.  i think i'll go over there after this just to find out the last time i posted just so i can embarrass them a little more the next time they bring it up.  the first time was /u/nullc when he stopped by here a month or so ago.  i had no idea what he was gabbing about at the time.  i've kinda lost interest in the concept altho i think Peter R had a good concept at the time.  the Blockstream crowd seems to think we're gonna release a spinoff if they get their SC's or LN network up or something.  TBH, i don't even understand the FUD and am not even going to bother trying to.  they're just immature and must be pulling their hair out over there.

hahaha.  last time i posted in the Spinoff thread was July 25, 2014.  

yeah!  i'm really pushing it, ain't i Greg!
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July 01, 2015, 07:43:34 PM
 #28016

From the perspective of a Bitcoin user, every possible thing that can go wrong with Bitcoin can be categorized into one of two failure modes:

  • A payment you belive to be valid, isn't (double spend)
  • You are unable to perform a payment that you want to perform (denial of service)

Exactly, great way to put it.

+1.  Justus, I've been reading some of your work and I really like your push to clearly and precisely define the cryptocurrency terms we're using.  Here's what I had jotted down yesterday, which sort of jives with the two points you made above:

   Bitcoin is decentralized if no entity exists with the ability to costlessly double-spend or bar valid transactions from the blockchain.

Thoughts?

I like your approach to clearly define terms but i don't like your approach of effectively redefining decentralized as a binary term when it has been generally understood to be fuzzy. This sort of redefining of terms can easily lead to confusion or deliberate obfuscation.

For example, by your definition, there being a miner or pool with 50%-1GH of the hash rate would still be considered a decentralized system, but in practice such a miner could trivially increase his hash rate or collude with any other miner and then costlessly double spend or block. Likewise, a 50%+1GH pool that attempts to block might find that some miners leave and the ability to block is lost. By your definition this would not be decentralized but in practice it would be since ability is so fragile.

i prefer to view decentralization more along the lines of a continuous metric such as https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shapley%2dShubik_power_index

The entities with the highest scores not only indicate whether the system is decentralized (your usage) if <1 but also how decentralized (common usage). The approach is not perfect here since there are different kinds of votes. Pool operators control important infrastructure and have some influence but their votes are not measured directly in hash rate.

Further, one can likely construct a single metric along the lines of https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Herfindahl_index (but not exactly that) which would characterize the presence of entities with relatively high Shapley-Shubik scores.

smooth
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July 01, 2015, 07:48:23 PM
 #28017

i think it's hilarious that /u/nullc has tried to stir up this conspiracy around several of the members in this thread in regards to Spinoffs.

i haven't clicked on that thread in what must be over a year now, yet we got Blockstream supporters tallying up #'s of posts as some sort of evidence.  i think i'll go over there after this just to find out the last time i posted just so i can embarrass them a little more the next time they bring it up.  the first time was /u/nullc when he stopped by here a month or so ago.  i had no idea what he was gabbing about at the time.  i've kinda lost interest in the concept altho i think Peter R had a good concept at the time.  the Blockstream crowd seems to think we're gonna release a spinoff if they get their SC's or LN network up or something.  TBH, i don't even understand the FUD and am not even going to bother trying to.  they're just immature and must be pulling their hair out over there.

What is the context? Just their old comments critical of it, or something new?
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July 01, 2015, 08:12:38 PM
 #28018

i think it's hilarious that /u/nullc has tried to stir up this conspiracy around several of the members in this thread in regards to Spinoffs.

i haven't clicked on that thread in what must be over a year now, yet we got Blockstream supporters tallying up #'s of posts as some sort of evidence.  i think i'll go over there after this just to find out the last time i posted just so i can embarrass them a little more the next time they bring it up.  the first time was /u/nullc when he stopped by here a month or so ago.  i had no idea what he was gabbing about at the time.  i've kinda lost interest in the concept altho i think Peter R had a good concept at the time.  the Blockstream crowd seems to think we're gonna release a spinoff if they get their SC's or LN network up or something.  TBH, i don't even understand the FUD and am not even going to bother trying to.  they're just immature and must be pulling their hair out over there.

I think they are waking up to the fact that they have pissed off a large percentage of their user base, and by user base I do not mean reddit accounts or phone wallet users, but the other infrastructure providers who make bitcoin work. (i.e. the developers behind coinbase, bitpay, circle, wallet developers, exchanges, etc).

These developers have put in a tremendous amount of time, effort and money in building toolkits around the open bitcoin protocol. They require that protocol to work. They do not want to see those investments be thrown away and forced into new off chain protocols (LN and SC) which even if they work require extensive effort to transition to (and that ignores philosophical differences). They also do not want the added risk of being forced to rely on unproven technologies for their mainstream offerings and instead favor the proven mainchain behavior.

The core devs have displayed themselves as poor partners to the rest of the bitcoin infrastructure community, because they are acting as if Bitcoin is still a toy for them to play around with as they see fit. This may have been true in 2010, but it's not today. It was one thing for them to dictate fee reductions as the price rose past $10 and the $100, but it is another thing to force the entire software infrastructure off the mainchain. This community wake up is not good for them long term.
rocks
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July 01, 2015, 08:25:35 PM
 #28019

From the perspective of a Bitcoin user, every possible thing that can go wrong with Bitcoin can be categorized into one of two failure modes:

  • A payment you belive to be valid, isn't (double spend)
  • You are unable to perform a payment that you want to perform (denial of service)

Exactly, great way to put it.

+1.  Justus, I've been reading some of your work and I really like your push to clearly and precisely define the cryptocurrency terms we're using.  Here's what I had jotted down yesterday, which sort of jives with the two points you made above:

   Bitcoin is decentralized if no entity exists with the ability to costlessly double-spend or bar valid transactions from the blockchain.

Thoughts?

I like your approach to clearly define terms but i don't like your approach of effectively redefining decentralized as a binary term when it has been generally understood to be fuzzy. This sort of redefining of terms can easily lead to confusion or deliberate obfuscation.

For example, by your definition, there being a miner or pool with 50%-1GH of the hash rate would still be considered a decentralized system, but in practice such a miner could trivially increase his hash rate or collude with any other miner and then costlessly double spend or block. Likewise, a 50%+1GH pool that attempts to block might find that some miners leave and the ability to block is lost. By your definition this would not be decentralized but in practice it would be since ability is so fragile.

i prefer to view decentralization more along the lines of a continuous metric such as https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shapley%2dShubik_power_index

The entities with the highest scores not only indicate whether the system is decentralized (your usage) if <1 but also how decentralized (common usage). The approach is not perfect here since there are different kinds of votes. Pool operators control important infrastructure and have some influence but their votes are not measured directly in hash rate.

Further, one can likely construct a single metric along the lines of https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Herfindahl_index (but not exactly that) which would characterize the presence of entities with relatively high Shapley-Shubik scores.

I like the approach, but a lot depends on how you value various metrics.

For example with mining pools, how few is too few where it starts to be a problem? Is going from 30 major pools to 20 major pools a reduction in Bitcoin's decentralization? I'd argue no because as long as miners have a range of pools to choose from, they will be able to select a pool that reflects their preferences. But when does this start to become an issue and how much of an issue? i.e. Does going from 20 major pools to 10 represent a significant issue or a slight one? When does it start to become a red flag issue? 5? 3? Personally I think 10 is probably enough, 5 is problem and 3 is a real problem. But that's just opinion and we can all make our own models to support various opinions.

So metrics are useful, but I think defining the objectives, as justusranvier did above, are key. The objectives at least puts a framework around what is an opinion based discussion.
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July 01, 2015, 08:28:26 PM
 #28020

i think it's hilarious that /u/nullc has tried to stir up this conspiracy around several of the members in this thread in regards to Spinoffs.

i haven't clicked on that thread in what must be over a year now, yet we got Blockstream supporters tallying up #'s of posts as some sort of evidence.  i think i'll go over there after this just to find out the last time i posted just so i can embarrass them a little more the next time they bring it up.  the first time was /u/nullc when he stopped by here a month or so ago.  i had no idea what he was gabbing about at the time.  i've kinda lost interest in the concept altho i think Peter R had a good concept at the time.  the Blockstream crowd seems to think we're gonna release a spinoff if they get their SC's or LN network up or something.  TBH, i don't even understand the FUD and am not even going to bother trying to.  they're just immature and must be pulling their hair out over there.

I was honored that whoever created the "stopthespinoff" account thought the concept was important enough to concoct a conspiracy theory around.  

A little background: I came up with the "spinoff" concept1 when there was concern in the community that Ethereum would overtake Bitcoin; many people wanted to invest in the Ether presale "just in case."  I wanted to promote the idea that the "ledger of balances" was separate from the "mechanism for updating that ledger."  I wanted to explain that--even in the unlikely case that the Ethereum tech was superior--there was still no reason to switch ledgers as well.  So this was my primary goal with that thread: to build a theoretical defence against an alt-coin with "superior tech."

I received several PMs and other offers of support to take the project one step further and launch a "demo spinoff."  However, the critical mass never quite materialized.  I was busy on what I considered more important work and soon lost interest.  

But a few months ago now, there was a bit of a resurgence in interest for spin-offs.  I considered that maybe it was indeed important enough to launch a "demo spinoff" so that people could more easily grok the concept, as ZB and chriswilmer had suggested.  Adam Back had recently expressed an interest in Aethereum, and so I asked if he was interested in actually launching Aethereum with me.  Perhaps this fact was relayed to Greg and others, and perhaps that is why they think there's work still being done on that project.  

When Greg came here a few weeks ago talking about spin-offs, I wanted to re-iterate that spin-offs aren't really about adding new features, but I was 4 glasses of wine in on a sunny Sunday afternoon Cheesy.  With sidechains, I think Greg wants to bring additional functionality to bitcoin, and perhaps he thinks spinoffs are intended to do the same thing.  They're not.  I always viewed them more as an "academic defence" to discourage scamcoins, and, in a "worst-case/bitcoin-breaking scenario," a technique that could be used to move our current ledger to a new "ledger updating protocol," thereby minimizing the loss of funds and disruptions to Bitcoin holders.  

1The idea was actually named by smooth, and it also appears that others, including thezerg, had had similar ideas in the past and that my idea was not novel--just the most widely read description of an earlier idea.

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