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Author Topic: What Make Bitcoin Different?  (Read 2116 times)
kiba
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August 17, 2010, 02:47:02 AM
 #1

What make bitcoins different from all other cryptocurrencies of the past?

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MoonShadow
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August 17, 2010, 03:41:10 AM
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What make bitcoins different from all other cryptocurrencies of the past?

You would need to be more specific, I would think.  What other cryptocurrencies would you be referring to?

"The powers of financial capitalism had another far-reaching aim, nothing less than to create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole. This system was to be controlled in a feudalist fashion by the central banks of the world acting in concert, by secret agreements arrived at in frequent meetings and conferences. The apex of the systems was to be the Bank for International Settlements in Basel, Switzerland, a private bank owned and controlled by the world's central banks which were themselves private corporations. Each central bank...sought to dominate its government by its ability to control Treasury loans, to manipulate foreign exchanges, to influence the level of economic activity in the country, and to influence cooperative politicians by subsequent economic rewards in the business world."

- Carroll Quigley, CFR member, mentor to Bill Clinton, from 'Tragedy And Hope'
aceat64
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August 17, 2010, 05:26:03 AM
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What make bitcoins different from all other cryptocurrencies of the past?

I am not aware of any other cryptocurrencies that got beyond the planning stages.

lfm
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August 17, 2010, 05:42:41 AM
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What make bitcoins different from all other cryptocurrencies of the past?

I am pretty sure Bitcoin is the first full implementation of the distributed authority model.

The mining/generation/confirmation sure seems unique to me too.

I guess the two are kinda intertwined.
caveden
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August 17, 2010, 07:37:16 AM
 #5

Which cryptocurrencies of the past?

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ichi
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August 17, 2010, 10:10:13 AM
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What lfm said.

All others that come to mind are centralized -- Liberty Reserve, Pecunix, e-gold, etc.  They're  not very crypto, either.  Well, e-gold tried, but went down hard.

Then there's the Global Settlement Foundation, which has a much broader agenda, and Loom, which is basically a truly humongous spreadsheet.  There could be interesting synergies, IMHO.
silverman
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August 17, 2010, 01:20:03 PM
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I see several Looms on Google, but none that make sense in this context. URL?

Red
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August 17, 2010, 03:51:05 PM
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All others that come to mind are centralized -- Liberty Reserve, Pecunix, e-gold, etc.  They're  not very crypto, either.  Well, e-gold tried, but went down hard.

Then there's the Global Settlement Foundation, which has a much broader agenda, and Loom, which is basically a truly humongous spreadsheet.  There could be interesting synergies, IMHO.

I want to add the concept craighto mentioned. LETS. Local exchange trading system.

Bitcoins differs from LETS in several ways but it is similar in other important ways. One very important similarity is both currencies are virtual and created/backed only by the  shared participation of a voluntary, self selected, community.

edit ----

This is from wikipedia but I think people will see the parallels with bitcoin.

"A number of people have problems adjusting to the different ways of operating using a LETSystem. A conventional national currency is generally hard to earn but easy to spend. To date LETSystems are comparatively easy to earn but harder to spend. The success of a LETSystem is therefore determined by the ease with which a person can spend their LETS credits, and improve their quality of life by participation. Placing difficult arrangements or unreasonable service fees in the way of LETS members will produce difficulties in the future."
MoonShadow
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August 17, 2010, 06:21:03 PM
 #9

I see several Looms on Google, but none that make sense in this context. URL?



I read about Loom at loom.cc.  First, it's by invitation only, so it's an online  barter club, really.  Second, Loom isn't really a currency.  It's like trading in digital titles or digital 'shares' of real assests.  An individual can 'create' a currency within Loom, but Loom itself is not a currency system but only a slick online form of secure barter.  A member can create crypto-titles to assets, such as a car or a bushel of wheat, and trade them online, as a form of contract barter.  It is very different, in practice and in intent, from Bitcoin.

"The powers of financial capitalism had another far-reaching aim, nothing less than to create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole. This system was to be controlled in a feudalist fashion by the central banks of the world acting in concert, by secret agreements arrived at in frequent meetings and conferences. The apex of the systems was to be the Bank for International Settlements in Basel, Switzerland, a private bank owned and controlled by the world's central banks which were themselves private corporations. Each central bank...sought to dominate its government by its ability to control Treasury loans, to manipulate foreign exchanges, to influence the level of economic activity in the country, and to influence cooperative politicians by subsequent economic rewards in the business world."

- Carroll Quigley, CFR member, mentor to Bill Clinton, from 'Tragedy And Hope'
kiba
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August 17, 2010, 06:23:29 PM
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I see several Looms on Google, but none that make sense in this context. URL?



I read about Loom at loom.cc.  First, it's by invitation only, so it's an online  barter club, really.  Second, Loom isn't really a currency.  It's like trading in digital titles or digital 'shares' of real assests.  An individual can 'create' a currency within Loom, but Loom itself is not a currency system but only a slick online form of secure barter.  A member can create crypto-titles to assets, such as a car or a bushel of wheat, and trade them online, as a form of contract barter.  It is very different, in practice and in intent, from Bitcoin.

More complementary than competition.

ichi
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August 17, 2010, 07:56:44 PM
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More complementary than competition.
Indeed.  One could trade Bitcoin on Loom, for example.  And perhaps, some day, one could pay "Loom rent" with Bitcoins.

I gather that the GSM considers only gold and other precious metals to be legitimate currencies.  To the extent that Bitcoin can fulfill on its potential to be a secure virtual "precious metal", it might be useful to them.  That's just my opinion as a bystander, BTW  Smiley
MoonShadow
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August 17, 2010, 08:00:41 PM
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More complementary than competition.
Indeed.  One could trade Bitcoin on Loom, for example.  And perhaps, some day, one could pay "Loom rent" with Bitcoins.

I gather that the GSM considers only gold and other precious metals to be legitimate currencies.  To the extent that Bitcoin can fulfill on its potential to be a secure virtual "precious metal", it might be useful to them.  That's just my opinion as a bystander, BTW  Smiley

What is the GSM?

"The powers of financial capitalism had another far-reaching aim, nothing less than to create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole. This system was to be controlled in a feudalist fashion by the central banks of the world acting in concert, by secret agreements arrived at in frequent meetings and conferences. The apex of the systems was to be the Bank for International Settlements in Basel, Switzerland, a private bank owned and controlled by the world's central banks which were themselves private corporations. Each central bank...sought to dominate its government by its ability to control Treasury loans, to manipulate foreign exchanges, to influence the level of economic activity in the country, and to influence cooperative politicians by subsequent economic rewards in the business world."

- Carroll Quigley, CFR member, mentor to Bill Clinton, from 'Tragedy And Hope'
ichi
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August 17, 2010, 08:11:26 PM
 #13

GSM = Global Settlement Foundation.

I DO NOT intend to open a discussion about that here, BTW.  And I do believe that the Bitcoin community should be familiar with their work (and vice versa).
MoonShadow
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August 17, 2010, 08:53:36 PM
 #14

GSM = Global Settlement Foundation.

I DO NOT intend to open a discussion about that here, BTW.  And I do believe that the Bitcoin community should be familiar with their work (and vice versa).

I can't say that I'm familiar with them, but I soon will be.


EDIT: It's interesting, and I would call the project well intended, but I don't have faith that a return to hard money in any form is likely to occur within my lifetime.  In fact, I hope that it does not, because that would imply a dystopian future such as depicted in "A World Made by Hand".

"The powers of financial capitalism had another far-reaching aim, nothing less than to create a world system of financial control in private hands able to dominate the political system of each country and the economy of the world as a whole. This system was to be controlled in a feudalist fashion by the central banks of the world acting in concert, by secret agreements arrived at in frequent meetings and conferences. The apex of the systems was to be the Bank for International Settlements in Basel, Switzerland, a private bank owned and controlled by the world's central banks which were themselves private corporations. Each central bank...sought to dominate its government by its ability to control Treasury loans, to manipulate foreign exchanges, to influence the level of economic activity in the country, and to influence cooperative politicians by subsequent economic rewards in the business world."

- Carroll Quigley, CFR member, mentor to Bill Clinton, from 'Tragedy And Hope'
ichi
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August 18, 2010, 03:09:22 AM
 #15

Hard money plus Loom is what's interesting, IMHO.  Bitcoin is far more elegant, however, and far easier to store.
RHorning
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August 18, 2010, 02:33:08 PM
 #16

What I found refreshing about Bitcoins was having a digital currency that didn't rely upon a central authority either for issuing the money in the first place or in terms of the record keeping of the transactions themselves.  I've seen digital currency suggestions in the past, but Bitcoins resolves these issues in a very elegant fashion.  Even the developers really don't have much control over the currency itself other than to be tweaking the "rules" that govern the project... and at this point it is only minor tweaks that can happen, not major shifts in policy.  An arbitrary change that gives 1m BTC to Satochi is only going to cause a fork in the project and certainly won't be recognized by the majority of the participants on this project... to give an example.

The fact that Bitcoins can't be used as a fractional reserve currency is something interesting too.  That is something which has been debated on many other threads, but it is something worthy of mention.  Yes, reserve banking can happen with Bitcoins, but that isn't the same thing and anybody "lending" bitcoins must have obtained them or have "depositors" first that have given them to the "bank".

I particularly love the egalitarian method of initial coin allocation with bitcoins, where even people who show up later can be a part of the "land rush" of creating new coins but at the same time such efforts to generate new coins don't necessarily overwhelm the currency as a whole in a destabilizing fashion.  One other side benefit is that it generally keeps no single person from having a majority of the currency, or even a controlling position within the currency except through "making a better mousetrap" and convincing bitcoin users to send them those coins in the first place.  A deliberate act is needed where people give you the coins in exchange for something of value (or for them to think you are a good charitable cause).

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