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Author Topic: Bitcoin concept is groundless TECHNICALLY..this article says..Can anyone defend?  (Read 9070 times)
MoonShadow
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May 18, 2011, 07:46:38 PM
 #41



That quiz is biased to get a lot of people identified as libertarians.  It's by design that it's high.  That doesn't mean they are actually libertarian.

Do you have references for this position, or is it just your opinion?  From what I understand, that quiz was well vetted for neutrality, and has been around under one name or another since the 1970's.  It's possible that it's biased, but I've given out dozens of those cards and found a fair distribution of Repubs & Dems that seems to match reality fairly well, with the majority of independents ringing in as libs, but certainly not all of them.  I've had true statists.

"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'
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MoonShadow
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May 18, 2011, 07:48:11 PM
 #42

This thread would be much better if there was less political posts to wade through looking for the actual rebuttals. Bitcoin is very good tech, all the wanky political assertions and theories and sweeping statements should get out and leave the way clear for the technical and economical talk.

However I beleive there is an Off Topic forum...

All life is politics, and Bitcoin is no exception.  We may attribute whatever leaning we desire to the project itself, but he political motivations of the founders are not in doubt.  They are alluded to in the genesis block.

"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'
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May 18, 2011, 08:55:10 PM
 #43

Honestly, I couldn't care less if Europeans use Bitcoin or not.
Yeah, because we all know that none of us West-Europeans are using bitcoin at all Tongue A lot of us would also like for the world of banking to be disrupted. Especially for doing business internationally it's way too complicated right now to take payments. For me, it has little to do with trusting or not trusting the government... Today's more and more globalized world needs something better than the current patchwork of toll-taking banks.




Sorry to interject in this fascinating discussion with my limited 2 cents worth of info, but you bring up a very good point. In today's financial system you never know how many intermediary banks along the way your payment will go through. Each one may have a commission that they'll take. Thus what the other person (or you) end up at the end of the transaction is not always 100% known. Toll-taking banks indeed!

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May 18, 2011, 09:21:19 PM
 #44

This thread would be much better if there was less political posts to wade through looking for the actual rebuttals. Bitcoin is very good tech, all the wanky political assertions and theories and sweeping statements should get out and leave the way clear for the technical and economical talk.

However I beleive there is an Off Topic forum...

All life is politics, and Bitcoin is no exception.  We may attribute whatever leaning we desire to the project itself, but he political motivations of the founders are not in doubt.  They are alluded to in the genesis block.

The quote from a newspaper? That only seems to imply that Nakamoto Satoshi does not approve of quantative easing or other expansive monetary policy. If more people will look into bitcoin they will not need all the time to think it is a project for people with perculiar political views and nothing more. It would be as to say "let's make a form of money to be used only by right wing conservatives, we will insult, bore, and accuse of corruption, idiocy and badness everyone else". This is below the standard necessary for a widely adopted technology. Bitcoins political effects can emerge for itself.
MoonShadow
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May 18, 2011, 09:26:20 PM
 #45

This thread would be much better if there was less political posts to wade through looking for the actual rebuttals. Bitcoin is very good tech, all the wanky political assertions and theories and sweeping statements should get out and leave the way clear for the technical and economical talk.

However I beleive there is an Off Topic forum...

All life is politics, and Bitcoin is no exception.  We may attribute whatever leaning we desire to the project itself, but he political motivations of the founders are not in doubt.  They are alluded to in the genesis block.

The quote from a newspaper? That only seems to imply that Nakamoto Satoshi does not approve of quantative easing or other expansive monetary policy.

Are you saying that wouldn't be a political opinion?

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If more people will look into bitcoin they will not need all the time to think it is a project for people with perculiar political views and nothing more. A potentially global currency should not be dominated by such political persuasions. It would be as to say "let's make a form of money to be used only by right wing conservatives, we will insult, bore, and accuse of corruption, idiocy and badness everyone else".

I think that I'm actually insulted.  Did you just call me a "right wing conservative"?

"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'
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May 18, 2011, 09:30:20 PM
 #46

This thread would be much better if there was less political posts to wade through looking for the actual rebuttals. Bitcoin is very good tech, all the wanky political assertions and theories and sweeping statements should get out and leave the way clear for the technical and economical talk.

However I beleive there is an Off Topic forum...

These forums are a terrible place to talk or learn about bitcoin.

It's more of a den of "isms," whichever you want to pick out - I'd say libertarian fantasist, but that's just me. I've taken to reading the blog posts and associated comments if I want to follow current arguments, especially technical ones. Too much cruft around here.

It's a tough one to get at. People are culturally used to debt based economies, which would suffer horribly from deflation. There's just no way around it, some people won't admit to it until Bitcoins are worth $1000, and even then some will oppose it. You should have noticed that most of the hate for Bitcoin has poured in since its exponential growth triggered around early April. That's people downtalking the feasibility of the Bitcoin projec after it successfully took its first step. This kind of response is emotional.

It's not hate. It's not emotional. 90% of these critiques express admiration for specific aspects of the bitcoin implementation, and sometimes even the ideologies that are associated with it.

Nobody talked about it because nobody knew about it.
xavier
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May 18, 2011, 09:43:56 PM
 #47

What worries me about bitcoin is the number of people who are so emotionally involved in this.

If someone comes along and makes a good critique of bitcoin, the last way to respond is to just insult him or call him names.  I know people have invested in Bitcoin and so they probably do feel pretty passionate about it but for the sake of the community we do need to try and stop all this insulting/name calling.

Yes I believe Bitcoin is vulnerable to DOS attacks. So is Google, Yahoo, Microsoft or any big website. But it seems (and I have to admit at this point although I am a computer science grad, I have not read and understood all of Satoshi's paper or the Bitcoin source code) from what I understand that whether a DOS attack will suceed or not depends on the size of the Bitcoin network.

At the moment, as sourced from the fatwallet.com post, it apparently would cost about $700k to build a network the size of the current bitcoin mining network. (I assume this value is true, but the actual post does not contain any mathematics or data to back up that claim).

How likely is it that an attacker will have access to a network that big and be smart & motivated enough to use it to attack Bitcoin. And how long would it take an attacker to do that? Because the longer it takes him to do that, the more difficult it becomes to outcompete the Bitcoin network, due to the fact that more mining nodes are being added every day.

As time increases, more people use Bitcoin, the value of Bitcoins increase and so the financial incentive for mining increases, so the number of miners increase. As the number of miners increase, this leads to a network that is more secure from DOS attacks.

Thus whilst there is a theoretical security risk embedded in Bitcoin, practically it seems to be a different question as to whether the network would actually be compromised. I do not know the size of the current network or how easy/difficult it would be for an attacker at the current stage, but as every day passes the network becomes more difficult for a DOS attacker to compromise. Because I do not know the size of the network it is difficult to pass judgement on how easy/difficult it would be for an attacker to compromise it at present. If anybody has that data, then it would be useful to share it.

Btw, in response to some earlier post that said "who has access to a $700k network", the answer is someone who has access to a botnet, the kinds of people who are able to perform high profile DOS attacks on websites. (like paradoxically the guys who took down MtGox the other day). Whether they are able to take down the much larger Bitcoin network is a different question.
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May 18, 2011, 09:45:37 PM
 #48

It's not hate. It's not emotional.

The emotional response is regarding deflationary economy in itself, not Bitcoin specifically.

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90% of these critiques express admiration for specific aspects of the bitcoin implementation

I doubt the honesty of such admiration. Considering the content that follow such comments, it sounds more like an argumentative concession than anything else.

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These forums are a terrible place to talk or learn about bitcoin.

It's more of a den of "isms," whichever you want to pick out

Maybe. This also happens to be the only place where people will defend Bitcoins, and provide proper arguments in the process. So far what I have seen outside of these forums is on one end tech savvy people bashing the tech without bothering to research their own misconceptions and providing some crap shoot argument about the economic side. On the other end of the spectrum, you have economic savvy crowds that bash the deflationary part while crap shooting on the tech arguments. In the middle you have that blogger, that understands neither and crap shoots both.

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May 18, 2011, 09:46:19 PM
 #49

I liked the sarcastic optimism in the last line of the article.

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Honestly, I also wish somebody would disrupt VISA/MasterCard a little bit.


goatpig
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May 18, 2011, 09:49:28 PM
 #50

Yes I believe Bitcoin is vulnerable to DOS attacks. So is Google, Yahoo, Microsoft or any big website. But it seems (and I have to admit at this point although I am a computer science grad, I have not read and understood all of Satoshi's paper or the Bitcoin source code) from what I understand that whether a DOS attack will suceed or not depends on the size of the Bitcoin network.

I don't think the DOS attack argument has any strength to it. Out of all the possible attacks on the network, it seems to be one type that involves the most resources for the least amount of disruption in return, if any.

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berlin
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May 18, 2011, 10:09:46 PM
 #51


Are you saying that wouldn't be a political opinion?


I think it is not required to digress further when we examine again the title of this thread:
"Bitcoin concept is groundless TECHNICALLY".

benjamindees
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May 18, 2011, 10:47:27 PM
 #52

TECHNICALLY the author of this piece never once mentions the TECHNICAL problem which Bitcoin was created to solve.  And the entire point is that it doesn't have to be TECHNICALLY perfect in order to do so.  That's the difference between an economic system and a mathematical system.  The best economic system in the world doesn't have to be mathematically correct, because people are far from perfect and the alternative is basically trading with each other using scraps of paper, shiny rocks, or groundless faith in far-off bureaucrats.

Let's put it this way, my house doesn't have to be able to withstand a nuclear attack in order for it to be an economical way to protect myself against thieves.

Civil Liberty Through Complex Mathematics
berlin
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May 18, 2011, 11:41:41 PM
 #53

TECHNICALLY the author of this piece never once mentions the TECHNICAL problem which Bitcoin was created to solve.  And the entire point is that it doesn't have to be TECHNICALLY perfect in order to do so.  That's the difference between an economic system and a mathematical system.  The best economic system in the world doesn't have to be mathematically correct, because people are far from perfect and the alternative is basically trading with each other using scraps of paper, shiny rocks, or groundless faith in far-off bureaucrats.

Let's put it this way, my house doesn't have to be able to withstand a nuclear attack in order for it to be an economical way to protect myself against thieves.

I read the points raised and felt that the author is not correct, particularly as I also think that bitcoin is good enough at what it is. I don't feel inclined to go back and address the article point by point, suffice to say that bitcoin is useful for what it can be used for, and that it will so be used.
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May 20, 2011, 06:00:18 AM
 #54

he basicly right[esp because he focus on theoritizing and thats worx magically for/against outsiders ;], but similar flaws was shared by "traditional" systems.
there hardly much "freedom" in common sense in nowdays BTC reality.
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May 20, 2011, 05:31:30 PM
 #55

I just learned about bitcoin a few days ago, but really find it fascinating.  I read OP's linked article, but I fail to be dissuaded of bitcoins potential, usefulness and security. Here is why:

Peer to Peer?
The author points out that its impractical to keep record of every transaction ever done on every single node, a point which the creators of bitcoin acknowledge.   The author fails to point out that bitcoin uses a merkle tree to essentially compress transaction data while maintaining security, making it possible to avoid nodes having to contain every transaction. He does note that scalability would probably lead to a tiered system, in which there are supernodes that do have the capacity to maintain all transactions, while other nodes would not.   The author likens it to "commoners" and "lords" in a british peerage system.  This is not an accurate analogy, since the barrier for entry to become a "supernode" equivalent or "lord" in the system he describes is very high or impossible for most, while in bitcoin that barrier would remain relatively low. See bitcoin wiki on "scalability".

Anonymous?
The author points out that bitcoin is not perfectly anonymous. I don't feel this is a requirement for a useful currency, but regardless, bitcoin has very good anonymity compared to anything else. I wouldn't discount its usefulness simply because someone set the bar at perfect anonymity.

Secure?
security and reliability is probably the primary concern of some new form of currency, but i dont feel the author, nor do i have a good grasp of how bitcoin achieves its level of security. I think his claims here are a bit overblown. He talks about block forking attacks and how they have the potential to disrupt transactions and accounts, but does not acknowledge the scaling difficulty of the encryption required to find blocks, or how that relates to processing capacity of the entire network. With out understanding the rules nodes abide by when addressing forks either, its hard to make conclusions as to how the entire network will behave in these instances.  See bitcoin wiki entry on "how bitcoin works" for more information.

He has an interesting point about asymmetry of good nodes vs bad nodes.  Good nodes must be constantly on(using power and money) as a majority of a network to maintain security, while bad nodes can enter at any instant to disrupt things, implying that a cost benefit analysis would favor bad nodes. I feel this is addressed not only by coin generation in block finding but also by transaction fees, which again the author does not mention. These two ideas have the potential to put cost benefit in favor of the good nodes, if necessary at all.  

While interesting, i dont think the authors points are very good or informed, i much preferred "Computer Scientist" on the fatwallet forums counter arguments to bitcoins here:
http://www.fatwallet.com/forums/finance/1090435/?start=192

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