FUDs and facts surrounding cryptocurrency mining around ...

Current Era: 1940

Say goodbye to 2010/2011 and give a warm welcome to...

1940

Datelock: No

All content before 1/1/1941 is acceptable.

Awards for previous Era (2010/2011)

Top post: This is so funny XD - mochimars
Festive But Shocking Reminder: Happy New Year! If you want to feel old, there are middle schoolers right now who don’t remember Y2K. ;) - iteoti
Most Discussion: Do you guys think I should set my spare PC up to mine bitcoin 24/7 or is it just a waste of money on the extra power bill? - slumberingparrot
Deadliest Meme: Just planked in a tree lol. Fuck this is cool - tommygun641
Throwback Song: Anyone heard of this Owl City dude? - evethewolfoxo

Helpful Resources/Links

Here are some links to help you get acquainted with the times:
Wikipedia page for 1940
Top 100 Songs
Sports highlights of 1940
IMDb top movies of 1940
Goodreads top books of 1940
History Central — includes top T.V. shows
Events around the world
Slang

Other

submitted by scottbeckman to thepast [link] [comments]

Long live decentralized bitcoin(!) A reading list

Newbs might not know this, but bitcoin recently came out of an intense internal drama. Between July 2015 and August 2017 bitcoin was attacked by external forces who were hoping to destroy the very properties that made bitcoin valuable in the first place. This culminated in the creation of segwit and the UASF (user activated soft fork) movement. The UASF was successful, segwit was added to bitcoin and with that the anti-decentralization side left bitcoin altogether and created their own altcoin called bcash. Bitcoin's price was $2500, soon after segwit was activated the price doubled to $5000 and continued rising until a top of $20000 before correcting to where we are today.
During this drama, I took time away from writing open source code to help educate and argue on reddit, twitter and other social media. I came up with a reading list for quickly copypasting things. It may be interesting today for newbs or anyone who wants a history lesson on what exactly happened during those two years when bitcoin's very existence as a decentralized low-trust currency was questioned. Now the fight has essentially been won, I try not to comment on reddit that much anymore. There's nothing left to do except wait for Lightning and similar tech to become mature (or better yet, help code it and test it)
In this thread you can learn about block sizes, latency, decentralization, segwit, ASICBOOST, lightning network and all the other issues that were debated endlessly for over two years. So when someone tries to get you to invest in bcash, remind them of the time they supported Bitcoin Unlimited.
For more threads like this see UASF

Summary / The fundamental tradeoff

A trip to the moon requires a rocket with multiple stages by gmaxwell (must read) https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/438hx0/a_trip_to_the_moon_requires_a_rocket_with/
Bram Cohen, creator of bittorrent, argues against a hard fork to a larger block size https://medium.com/@bramcohen/bitcoin-s-ironic-crisis-32226a85e39f#.558vetum4
gmaxwell's summary of the debate https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=1343716.msg13701818#msg13701818
Core devs please explain your vision (see luke's post which also argues that blocks are already too big) https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/61yvvv/request_to_core_devs_please_explain_your_vision/
Mod of btc speaking against a hard fork https://www.reddit.com/btc/comments/57hd14/core_reaction_to_viabtc_this_week/d8scokm/
It's becoming clear to me that a lot of people don't understand how fragile bitcoin is https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/59kflj/its_becoming_clear_to_me_that_a_lot_of_people/
Blockchain space must be costly, it can never be free https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/4og24h/i_just_attended_the_distributed_trade_conference/
Charlie Lee with a nice analogy about the fundamental tradeoff https://medium.com/@SatoshiLite/eating-the-bitcoin-cake-fc2b4ebfb85e#.444vr8shw
gmaxwell on the tradeoffs https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=1520693.msg15303746#msg15303746
jratcliff on the layering https://www.reddit.com/btc/comments/59upyh/segwit_the_poison_pill_for_bitcoin/d9bstuw/

Scaling on-chain will destroy bitcoin's decentralization

Peter Todd: How a floating blocksize limit inevitably leads towards centralization [Feb 2013] https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=144895.0 mailing list https://lists.linuxfoundation.org/pipermail/bitcoin-dev/2013-February/002176.html with discussion on reddit in Aug 2015 https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/3hnvi8/just_a_little_history_lesson_for_everyone_new_the/
Nick Szabo's blog post on what makes bitcoin so special http://unenumerated.blogspot.com/2017/02/money-blockchains-and-social-scalability.html
There is academic research showing that even small (2MB) increases to the blocksize results in drastic node dropoff counts due to the non-linear increase of RAM needed. http://bravenewcoin.com/assets/Whitepapers/block-size-1.1.1.pdf
Reddit summary of above link. In this table, you can see it estimates a 40% drop immediately in node count with a 2MB upgrade and a 50% over 6 months. At 4mb, it becomes 75% immediately and 80% over 6 months. At 8, it becomes 90% and 95%. https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5qw2wa_future_led_by_bitcoin_unlimited_is_a/dd442pw/
Larger block sizes make centralization pressures worse (mathematical) https://petertodd.org/2016/block-publication-incentives-for-miners
Talk at scalingbitcoin montreal, initial blockchain synchronization puts serious constraints on any increase in the block size https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TgjrS-BPWDQ&t=2h02m06s with transcript https://scalingbitcoin.org/transcript/montreal2015/block-synchronization-time
Bitcoin's P2P Network: The Soft Underbelly of Bitcoin https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y6kibPzbrIc someone's notes: https://gist.github.com/romyilano/5e22394857a39889a1e5 reddit discussion https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/4py5df/so_f2pool_antpool_btcc_pool_are_actually_one_pool/
In adversarial environments blockchains dont scale https://scalingbitcoin.org/transcript/hongkong2015/in-adversarial-environments-blockchains-dont-scale
Why miners will not voluntarily individually produce smaller blocks https://scalingbitcoin.org/transcript/hongkong2015/why-miners-will-not-voluntarily-individually-produce-smaller-blocks
Hal Finney: bitcoin's blockchain can only be a settlement layer (mostly interesting because it's hal finney and its in 2010) https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/3sb5nj/most_bitcoin_transactions_will_occur_between/
petertodd's 2013 video explaining this https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cZp7UGgBR0I
luke-jr's summary https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/61yvvv/request_to_core_devs_please_explain_your_vision/dficjhj/
Another jratcliff thread https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6lmpll/explaining_why_big_blocks_are_bad/

Full blocks are not a disaster

Blocks must be always full, there must always be a backlog https://medium.com/@bergealex4/bitcoin-is-unstable-without-the-block-size-size-limit-70db07070a54#.kh2vi86lr
Same as above, the mining gap means there must always be a backlog talk: https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=2453&v=iKDC2DpzNbw transcript: https://scalingbitcoin.org/transcript/montreal2015/security-of-diminishing-block-subsidy
Backlogs arent that bad https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/49p011/was_the_fee_event_really_so_bad_my_mind_is/
Examples where scarce block space causes people to use precious resources more efficiently https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/4kxxvj/i_just_singlehandedly_increased_bitcoin_network/
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/47d4m2/why_does_coinbase_make_2_transactions_pe
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/53wucs/why_arent_blocks_full_yet/d7x19iv
Full blocks are fine https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5uld1a/misconception_full_blocks_mean_bitcoin_is_failing/
High miner fees imply a sustainable future for bitcoin https://www.reddit.com/BitcoinMarkets/comments/680tvf/fundamentals_friday_week_of_friday_april_28_2017/dgwmhl7/
gmaxwell on why full blocks are good https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6b57ca/full_blocks_good_or_bad/dhjxwbz/
The whole idea of the mempool being "filled" is wrong headed. The mempool doesn't "clog" or get stuck, or anything like that. https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/7cusnx/to_the_people_still_doubting_that_this_congestion/dpssokf/

Segwit

What is segwit

luke-jr's longer summary https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6033h7/today_is_exactly_4_months_since_the_segwit_voting/df3tgwg/?context=1
Charlie Shrem's on upgrading to segwit https://twitter.com/CharlieShrem/status/842711238853513220
Original segwit talk at scalingbitcoin hong kong + transcript https://youtu.be/zchzn7aPQjI?t=110
https://scalingbitcoin.org/transcript/hongkong2015/segregated-witness-and-its-impact-on-scalability
Segwit is not too complex https://www.reddit.com/btc/comments/57vjin/segwit_is_not_great/d8vos33/
Segwit does not make it possible for miners to steal coins, contrary to what some people say https://www.reddit.com/btc/comments/5e6bt0/concerns_with_segwit_and_anyone_can_spend/daa5jat/?context=1
https://keepingstock.net/segwit-eli5-misinformation-faq-19908ceacf23#.r8hlzaquz
Segwit is required for a useful lightning network It's now known that without a malleability fix useful indefinite channels are not really possible.
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5tzqtc/gentle_reminder_the_ln_doesnt_require_segwit/ddqgda7/
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5tzqtc/gentle_reminder_the_ln_doesnt_require_segwit/ddqbukj/
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5x2oh0/olaoluwa_osuntokun_all_active_lightning_network/deeto14/?context=3
Clearing up SegWit Lies and Myths: https://achow101.com/2016/04/Segwit-FUD-Clearup
Segwit is bigger blocks https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5pb8vs/misinformation_is_working_54_incorrectly_believe/dcpz3en/
Typical usage results in segwit allowing capacity equivalent to 2mb blocks https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/69i2md/observe_for_yourself_segwit_allows_2_mb_blocks_in/

Why is segwit being blocked

Jihan Wu (head of largest bitcoin mining group) is blocking segwit because of perceived loss of income https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/60mb9e/complete_high_quality_translation_of_jihans/
Witness discount creates aligned incentives https://segwit.org/why-a-discount-factor-of-4-why-not-2-or-8-bbcebe91721e#.h36odthq0 https://medium.com/@SegWit.co/what-is-behind-the-segwit-discount-988f29dc1edf#.sr91dg406
or because he wants his mining enterprise to have control over bitcoin https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6jdyk8/direct_report_of_jihan_wus_real_reason_fo

Segwit is being blocked because it breaks ASICBOOST, a patented optimization used by bitmain ASIC manufacturer

Details and discovery by gmaxwell https://lists.linuxfoundation.org/pipermail/bitcoin-dev/2017-April/013996.html
Reddit thread with discussion https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/63otrp/gregory_maxwell_major_asic_manufacturer_is/
Simplified explaination by jonny1000 https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/64qq5g/attempted_explanation_of_the_alleged_asicboost/
http://www.mit.edu/~jlrubin/public/pdfs/Asicboost.pdf
https://medium.com/@jimmysong/examining-bitmains-claims-about-asicboost-1d61118c678d
Evidence https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/63yo27/some_circumstantial_evidence_supporting_the_claim/
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/63vn5g/please_dont_stop_us_from_using_asicboost_which/dfxmm75/
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/63soe3/reverse_engineering_an_asic_is_a_significant_task/dfx9nc
Bitmain admits their chips have asicboost but they say they never used it on the network (haha a likely story) https://blog.bitmain.com/en/regarding-recent-allegations-smear-campaigns/
Worth $100m per year to them (also in gmaxwell's original email) https://twitter.com/petertoddbtc/status/849798529929424898
Other calculations show less https://medium.com/@vcorem/the-real-savings-from-asicboost-to-bitmaintech-ff265c2d305b
This also blocks all these other cool updates, not just segwit https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/63otrp/gregory_maxwell_major_asic_manufacturer_is/dfw0ej3/
Summary of bad consequences of asicboost https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/64qq5g/attempted_explanation_of_the_alleged_asicboost/dg4hyqk/?context=1
Luke's summary of the entire situation https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6ego3s/why_is_killing_asicboost_not_a_priority/diagkkb/?context=1
Prices goes up because now segwit looks more likely https://twitter.com/TuurDemeestestatus/849846845425799168
Asicboost discovery made the price rise https://twitter.com/TuurDemeestestatus/851520094677200901
A pool was caught red handed doing asicboost, by this time it seemed fairly certain that segwit would get activated so it didnt produce as much interest as earlier https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6p7lr5/1hash_pool_has_mined_2_invalid_blocks/ and https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6p95dl/interesting_1hash_pool_mined_some_invalid_blocks/ and https://twitter.com/petertoddbtc/status/889475196322811904
This btc user is outraged at the entire forum because they support Bitmain and ASICBOOST https://www.reddit.com/btc/comments/67t43y/dragons_den_planned_smear_campaign_of_bitmain/dgtg9l2/
Antbleed, turns out Bitmain can shut down all its ASICs by remote control: http://www.antbleed.com/

What if segwit never activates

What if segwit never activates? https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6ab8js/transaction_fees_are_now_making_btc_like_the_banks/dhdq3id/ with https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5ksu3o/blinded_bearer_certificates/ and https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/4xy0fm/scaling_quickly/

Lightning

bitcoinmagazine's series on what lightning is and how it works https://bitcoinmagazine.com/articles/understanding-the-lightning-network-part-building-a-bidirectional-payment-channel-1464710791/ https://bitcoinmagazine.com/articles/understanding-the-lightning-network-part-creating-the-network-1465326903/ https://bitcoinmagazine.com/articles/understanding-the-lightning-network-part-completing-the-puzzle-and-closing-the-channel-1466178980/
The Lightning Network ELIDHDICACS (Explain Like I Don’t Have Degrees in Cryptography and Computer Science) https://letstalkbitcoin.com/blog/post/the-lightning-network-elidhdicacs
Ligtning will increases fees for miners, not lower them https://medium.com/lightning-resources/the-lightning-paradox-f15ce0e8e374#.erfgunumh
Cost-benefit analysis of lightning from the point of view of miners https://medium.com/@rusty_lightning/miners-and-bitcoin-lightning-a133cd550310#.x42rovlg8
Routing blog post by rusty https://medium.com/@rusty_lightning/routing-dijkstra-bellman-ford-and-bfg-7715840f004 and reddit comments https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/4lzkz1/rusty_russell_on_lightning_routing_routing/
Lightning protocol rfc https://github.com/lightningnetwork/lightning-rfc
Blog post with screenshots of ln being used on testnet https://medium.com/@btc_coach/lightning-network-in-action-b18a035c955d video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mxGiMu4V7ns
Video of sending and receiving ln on testnet https://twitter.com/alexbosworth/status/844030573131706368
Lightning tradeoffs http://www.coindesk.com/lightning-technical-challenges-bitcoin-scalability/
Beer sold for testnet lightning https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/62uw23/lightning_network_is_working_room77_is_accepting/ and https://twitter.com/MrHodl/status/848265171269283845
Lightning will result in far fewer coins being stored on third parties because it supports instant transactions https://medium.com/@thecryptoconomy/the-barely-discussed-incredible-benefit-of-the-lightning-network-4ce82c75eb58
jgarzik argues strongly against LN, he owns a coin tracking startup https://twitter.com/petertoddbtc/status/860826532650123264 https://twitter.com/Beautyon_/status/886128801926795264
luke's great debunking / answer of some misinformation questions https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6st4eq/questions_about_lightning_network/dlfap0u/
Lightning centralization doesnt happen https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6vzau5/reminder_bitcoins_key_strength_is_in_being/dm4ou3v/?context=1
roasbeef on hubs and charging fees https://twitter.com/roasbeef/status/930209165728825344 and https://twitter.com/roasbeef/status/930210145790976000

Immutability / Being a swiss bank in your pocket / Why doing a hard fork (especially without consensus) is damaging

A downside of hard forks is damaging bitcoin's immutability https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5em6vu/what_happens_if_segwit_doesnt_activate/dae1r6c/?context=3
Interesting analysis of miners incentives and how failure is possible, don't trust the miners for long term https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5gtew4/why_an_increased_block_size_increases_the_cost_of/daybazj/?context=2
waxwing on the meaning of cash and settlement https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5ei7m3/unconfirmed_transactions_60k_total_fees_14btc/dad001v/
maaku on the cash question https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5i5iq5/we_are_spoiled/db5luiv/?context=1
Digital gold funamentalists gain nothing from supporting a hard fork to larger block sizes https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5xzunq/core_please_compromise_before_we_end_up_with_bu/dem73xg/?context=1
Those asking for a compromise don't understand the underlying political forces https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6ef7wb/some_comments_on_the_bip148_uasf_from_the/dia236b/?context=3
Nobody wants a contentious hard fork actually, anti-core people got emotionally manipulated https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5sq5ocontentious_forks_vs_incremental_progress/ddip57o/
The hard work of the core developers has kept bitcoin scalable https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/3hfgpo/an_initiative_to_bring_advanced_privacy_features/cu7mhw8?context=9
Recent PRs to improve bitcoin scaleability ignored by the debate https://twitter.com/jfnewbery/status/883001356168167425
gmaxwell against hard forks since 2013 https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=140233.20
maaku: hard forks are really bad https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5zxjza/adam_greg_core_devs_and_big_blockers_now_is_the/df275yk/?context=2

Some metrics on what the market thinks of decentralization and hostile hard forks

The price history shows that the exchange rate drops every time a hard fork threatens: https://i.imgur.com/EVPYLR8.jpg
and this example from 2017 https://twitter.com/WhalePanda/status/845562763820912642
http://imgur.com/a/DuHAn btc users lose money
price supporting theymos' moderation https://i.imgur.com/0jZdF9h.png
old version https://i.imgur.com/BFTxTJl.png
older version https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CxqtUakUQAEmC0d.jpg
about 50% of nodes updated to the soft fork node quite quickly https://imgur.com/O0xboVI

Bitcoin Unlimited / Emergent Consensus is badly designed, changes the game theory of bitcoin

Bitcoin Unlimited was a proposed hard fork client, it was made with the intention to stop segwit from activating
A Future Led by Bitcoin Unlimited is a Centralized Future https://blog.sia.tech/a-future-led-by-bitcoin-unlimited-is-a-centralized-future-e48ab52c817a#.p1ly6hldk
Flexible transactions are bugged https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/57tf5g/bitcoindev_bluematt_on_flexible_transactions/
Bugged BU software mines an invalid block, wasting 13 bitcoins or $12k
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5qwtr2/bitcoincom_loses_132btc_trying_to_fork_the/
https://www.reddit.com/btc/comments/5qx18i/bitcoincom_loses_132btc_trying_to_fork_the/
bitcoin.com employees are moderators of btc https://medium.com/@WhalePanda/the-curious-relation-between-bitcoin-com-anti-segwit-propaganda-26c877249976#.vl02566k4
miners don't control stuff like the block size http://hackingdistributed.com/2016/01/03/time-for-bitcoin-user-voice/
even gavin agreed that economic majority controls things https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5ywoi9/in_2010_gavin_predicted_that_exchanges_ie_the/
fork clients are trying to steal bitcoin's brand and network effect, theyre no different from altcoins https://medium.com/@Coinosphere/why-bitcoin-unlimited-should-be-correctly-classified-as-an-attempted-robbery-of-bitcoin-not-a-9355d075763c#.qeaynlx5m
BU being active makes it easier to reverse payments, increases wasted work making the network less secure and giving an advantage to bigger miners https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5g1x84/bitcoin_unlimited_bu_median_value_of_miner_eb/
bitcoin unlimited takes power away from users and gives it to miners https://medium.com/@alpalpalp/bitcoin-unlimiteds-placebo-controls-6320cbc137d4#.q0dv15gd5
bitcoin unlimited's accepted depth https://twitter.com/tdryja/status/804770009272696832
BU's lying propaganda poster https://imgur.com/osrViDE

BU is bugged, poorly-reviewed and crashes

bitcoin unlimited allegedly funded by kraken stolen coins
https://www.reddit.com/btc/comments/55ajuh/taint_analysis_on_bitcoin_stolen_from_kraken_on/
https://www.reddit.com/btc/comments/559miz/taint_analysis_on_btc_allegedly_stolen_from_kraken/
Other funding stuff
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5zozmn/damning_evidence_on_how_bitcoin_unlimited_pays/
A serious bug in BU https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5h70s3/bitcoin_unlimited_bu_the_developers_have_realized/
A summary of what's wrong with BU: https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5z3wg2/jihanwu_we_will_switch_the_entire_pool_to/devak98/

Bitcoin Unlimited Remote Exploit Crash 14/3/2017

https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5zdkv3/bitcoin_unlimited_remote_exploit_crash/ https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5zeb76/timbe https://www.reddit.com/btc/comments/5zdrru/peter_todd_bu_remote_crash_dos_wtf_bug_assert0_in/
BU devs calling it as disaster https://twitter.com/SooMartindale/status/841758265188966401 also btc deleted a thread about the exploit https://i.imgur.com/lVvFRqN.png
Summary of incident https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5zf97j/i_was_undecided_now_im_not/
More than 20 exchanges will list BTU as an altcoin
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5zyg6g/bitcoin_exchanges_unveil_emergency_hard_fork/
Again a few days later https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/60qmkt/bu_is_taking_another_shit_timberrrrr

User Activated Soft Fork (UASF)

site for it, including list of businesses supporting it http://www.uasf.co/
luke's view
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5zsk45/i_am_shaolinfry_author_of_the_recent_usedf1dqen/?context=3
threat of UASF makes the miner fall into line in litecoin
https://www.reddit.com/litecoin/comments/66omhlitecoin_global_roundtable_resolution/dgk2thk/?context=3
UASF delivers the goods for vertcoin
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/692mi3/in_test_case_uasf_results_in_miner_consensus/dh3cm34/?context=1
UASF coin is more valuable https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6cgv44/a_uasf_chain_will_be_profoundly_more_valuable/
All the links together in one place https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6dzpew/hi_its_mkwia_again_maintainer_of_uasfbitcoin_on/
p2sh was a uasf https://github.com/bitcoin/bitcoin/blob/v0.6.0/src/main.cpp#L1281-L1283
jgarzik annoyed at the strict timeline that segwit2x has to follow because of bip148 https://twitter.com/jgarzik/status/886605836902162432
Committed intolerant minority https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6d7dyt/a_plea_for_rational_intolerance_extremism_and/
alp on the game theory of the intolerant minority https://medium.com/@alpalpalp/user-activated-soft-forks-and-the-intolerant-minority-a54e57869f57
The risk of UASF is less than the cost of doing nothing https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6bof7a/were_getting_to_the_point_where_a_the_cost_of_not/
uasf delivered the goods for bitcoin, it forced antpool and others to signal (May 2016) https://bitcoinmagazine.com/articles/antpool-will-not-run-segwit-without-block-size-increase-hard-fork-1464028753/ "When asked specifically whether Antpool would run SegWit code without a hard fork increase in the block size also included in a release of Bitcoin Core, Wu responded: “No. It is acceptable that the hard fork code is not activated, but it needs to be included in a ‘release’ of Bitcoin Core. I have made it clear about the definition of ‘release,’ which is not ‘public.’”"
Screenshot of peter rizun capitulating https://twitter.com/chris_belcher_/status/905231603991007232

Fighting off 2x HF

https://twitter.com/MrHodl/status/895089909723049984
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6h612o/can_someone_explain_to_me_why_core_wont_endorse/?st=j6ic5n17&sh=cc37ee23
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6smezz/segwit2x_hard_fork_is_completely_useless_its_a/?st=j6ic2aw3&sh=371418dd
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6sbspv/who_exactly_is_segwit2x_catering_for_now_segwit/?st=j6ic5nic&sh=1f86cadd
https://medium.com/@elliotolds/lesser-known-reasons-to-keep-blocks-small-in-the-words-of-bitcoin-core-developers-44861968185e
b2x is most of all about firing core https://twitter.com/WhalePanda/status/912664487135760384
https://medium.com/@StopAndDecrypt/thats-not-bitcoin-this-is-bitcoin-95f05a6fd6c2

Misinformation / sockpuppets

https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6uqz6k/markets_update_bitcoin_cash_rallies_for_three/dlurbpx/
three year old account, only started posting today https://archive.is/3STjH
Why we should not hard fork after the UASF worked: https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6sl1qf/heres_why_we_should_not_hard_fork_in_a_few_months/

History

Good article that covers virtually all the important history https://bitcoinmagazine.com/articles/long-road-segwit-how-bitcoins-biggest-protocol-upgrade-became-reality/
Interesting post with some history pre-2015 https://btcmanager.com/the-long-history-of-the-fight-over-scaling-bitcoin/
The core scalabality roadmap + my summary from 3/2017 https://lists.linuxfoundation.org/pipermail/bitcoin-dev/2015-Decembe011865.html my summary https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5xa5fa/the_core_development_scalability_roadmap/
History from summer 2015 https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5xg7f8/the_origins_of_the_blocksize_debate/
Brief reminders of the ETC situation https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6nvlgo/simple_breakdown_of_bip91_its_simply_the_miners/dkcycrz/
Longer writeup of ethereum's TheDAO bailout fraud https://www.reddit.com/ethereumfraud/comments/6bgvqv/faq_what_exactly_is_the_fraud_in_ethereum/
Point that the bigblocker side is only blocking segwit as a hostage https://www.reddit.com/BitcoinMarkets/comments/5sqhcq/daily_discussion_wednesday_february_08_2017/ddi3ctv/?context=3
jonny1000's recall of the history of bitcoin https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6s34gg/rbtc_spreading_misinformation_in_rbitcoinmarkets/dl9wkfx/

Misc (mostly memes)

libbitcoin's Understanding Bitcoin series (another must read, most of it) https://github.com/libbitcoin/libbitcoin/wiki/Understanding-Bitcoin
github commit where satoshi added the block size limit https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/63859l/github_commit_where_satoshi_added_the_block_size/
hard fork proposals from some core devs https://bitcoinhardforkresearch.github.io/
blockstream hasnt taken over the entire bitcoin core project https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/622bjp/bitcoin_core_blockstream/
blockstream is one of the good guys https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6cttkh/its_happening_blockstream_opens_liquid_sidechain/dhxu4e
Forkers, we're not raising a single byte! Song lyrics by belcher https://gist.github.com/chris-belche7264cd6750a86f8b4a9a
Some stuff here along with that cool photoshopped poster https://medium.com/@jimmysong/bitcoin-realism-or-how-i-learned-to-stop-worrying-and-love-1mb-blocks-c191c35e74cb
Nice graphic https://twitter.com/RNR_0/status/871070843698380800
gmaxwell saying how he is probably responsible for the most privacy tech in bitcoin, while mike hearn screwed up privacy https://www.reddit.com/btc/comments/6azyme/hey_bu_wheres_your_testnet/dhiq3xo/?context=6
Fairly cool propaganda poster https://twitter.com/urbanarson/status/880476631583924225
btc tankman https://i.redd.it/gxjqenzpr27z.png https://twitter.com/DanDarkPill/status/853653168151986177
asicboost discovery meme https://twitter.com/allenscottoshi/status/849888189124947971
https://twitter.com/urbanarson/status/882020516521013250
gavin wanted to kill the bitcoin chain https://twitter.com/allenscottoshi/status/849888189124947971
stuff that btc believes https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6ld4a5/serious_is_the_rbtc_and_the_bu_crowd_a_joke_how/djszsqu/
after segwit2x NYA got agreed all the fee pressure disappeared, laurenmt found they were artificial spam https://twitter.com/i/moments/885827802775396352
theymos saying why victory isnt inevitable https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6lmpll/explaining_why_big_blocks_are_bad/djvxv2o/
with ignorant enemies like these its no wonder we won https://bitco.in/forum/threads/gold-collapsing-bitcoin-up.16/page-999 ""So, once segwit2x activates, from that moment on it will require a coordinated fork to avoid the up coming "baked in" HF. ""
a positive effect of bcash, it made blockchain utxo spammers move away from bitcoin https://www.reddit.com/btc/comments/76lv0b/cryptograffitiinfo_now_accepts_bitcoin_cash/dof38gw/
summary of craig wright, jihan wu and roger ver's positions https://medium.com/@HjalmarPeters/the-big-blockers-bead6027deb2
Why is bitcoin so strong against attack?!?! (because we're motivated and awesome) https://www.reddit.com/btc/comments/64wo1h/bitcoin_unlimited_is_being_blocked_by_antivirus/dg5n00x/
what happened to #oldjeffgarzik https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6ufv5x/a_reminder_of_some_of_jeff_garziks_greatest/
big blockers fully deserve to lose every last bitcoin they ever had and more https://www.reddit.com/BitcoinMarkets/comments/756nxf/daily_discussion_monday_october_09_2017/do5ihqi/
gavinandresen brainstorming how to kill bitcoin with a 51% in a nasty way https://twitter.com/btcdrak/status/843914877542567937
Roger Ver as bitcoin Judas https://imgur.com/a/Rf1Pi
A bunch of tweets and memes celebrating UASF
https://twitter.com/shaolinfry/status/842457019286188032 | https://twitter.com/SatoshiLite/status/888335092560441345 | https://twitter.com/btcArtGallery/status/887485162925285377 | https://twitter.com/Beautyon_/status/888109901611802624 | https://twitter.com/Excellion/status/889211512966873088 | https://twitter.com/lopp/status/888200452197801984 | https://twitter.com/AlpacaSW/status/886988980524396544 | https://twitter.com/BashCo_/status/877253729531162624 | https://twitter.com/tdryja/status/865212300361379840 | https://twitter.com/Excellion/status/871179040157179904 | https://twitter.com/TraceMayestatus/849856343074902016 | https://twitter.com/TraceMayestatus/841855022640033792 | https://fs.bitcoinmagazine.com/img/images/Screen_Shot_2017-08-18_at_01.36.47.original.png
submitted by belcher_ to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

The Implications of Bitcoin (x-post from r/cryptocurrency)

This is starting to develop into a series of posts (here is the first one on both steemit and reddit), I've thrown this post on steemit, though the full text is available here. My next post is already half done and will deal with wallets, personal security, and the future therein. A table of contents is on the way that will help organize these.
I realize many here are familiar with a lot of this information, but I aim to present it in a way that's understandable to people that haven't yet spent the time to research for hours. I would appreciate any comments or criticism in order to refine the ideas. I'm not trying to shill anything in particular, though I reference bitcoin specifically for a lot of reasons I won't go into right here, most if not all of what I explain could be applied to other cryptos. I don't wish to encourage people to "invest" in this tech, I only wish that they begin to learn about it. I think this technology will change the world no matter what we do right now, I simply wish to explain in plain English how it might benefit our global society.

The Implications of Bitcoin - Deciphering the Enigma

Money is one of the oldest technologies; it's older than writing; we know this because the first writing we find is keeping track of transactions. Money has held many forms (rock, bone, metal, paper, cloth, plastic, etc.), each generation of token ideally being more portable and harder to forge. Portability, (ease of moving around the tokens) increases what you can do with it, while forgeability describes how secure it is against counterfeiters. Modern banking is essentially impossible to forge, and is vastly more portable than physical tokens because it exists solely on banking networks. For those with access to modern banks, money has never been more free to move around. Enter Bitcoin; it is no less forgeable than its predecessor,but it's portability is exponentially increased, and being decentralized it introduces a new feature, it's open to everyone.

What is Bitcoin?

At first glance bitcoin appears very similar to how we already transact in the developed world; it's "just" digital money. We have paypal, venmo, online banking, and credit cards that allow us to move our money around. However, to call bitcoin similar is making a huge mistake and vastly misunderstanding its concept, philosophy, and power. Modern banking services are exclusive to the developed world and only accessed with the permission of for-profit, private institutions, the gatekeepers of local and global money transfer. In the developing world there are billions of people without access to any bank, and many more have limited access to even basic services. Often there's little competition which stifles innovation and increases monopolistic practices. It's these citizens of our global society that stand to benefit most from this technology in an immediate sense.
Bitcoin is a decentralized, open, and immutable means of exchanging value. There are several layers to this concept alone; most significantly, that bitcoin is fundamentally different from anything we have ever contemplated. This makes it difficult to understand the implications or benefits of such a revolutionary technology. It's an epochal shift in how we can transact and store value.
This system can be accessed by everyone, anywhere, anytime. It is neutral, trans-national, and facilitates the freedom of money. Bitcoin itself requires no personal information or account creation through a business, nation, or organization. One simply generates keys and is free to transact with anyone. There isn't a central authority to dictate who can and can't use the network, no gatekeepers, no one to freeze payments or hold funds.

How is Bitcoin Secure?

I think people are well-justified to be skeptical of bitcoin's security, it's often touted as "unhackable" or "immutable". I try not to speak in absolutes; so I simply state that it's not worth trying to hack because its security lies in cryptography and game-theory.
If you guessed my private key you could spend coins associated with that address. Computers can guess many times in a a second, but even with every computer on the planet it would take much longer than the universe has existed to guess the private keys to a single bitcoin address. This is still true even with 1,000 earths worth of computing power. This is cryptographic security.
Game theory sounds daunting but it's easy to understand, it's "the study of mathematical models of conflict and cooperation between intelligent rational decision-makers." In bitcoin this manifests through "proof of work" which amounts to "miners" using computers to do lots of math problems, the results of which get embedded in the transaction record (the blockchain), and they receive rewards for their effort of mining a block. Miners are incentivized to contribute to the system.

So what if we try to cheat?

The amount of money and resources required to assemble enough computing power to even attempt to cheat the system (the "51% attack") would cost more than any benefits of doing so because the attack has no guarantee of working, and it would be obvious to anyone looking at the transaction record. In some cases the cheating transaction could be routed-around, essentially erased, negating all the work put in by the attacker who still had to pony up all the computing hardware and electricity. It's simply more profitable to take those computing resources and just mine bitcoins instead of attempting an attack. Game theory at its finest.
Many criticize the computing power and electricity "wasted" on bitcoin mining. Another perspective is that all this computational expenditure is quite intentional because it maintains the security of the system. It's analogous to mining gold; gold ore is just a pile of rocks that require significant extraction and refining to yield highly valuable and useful gold. Bitcoin's proof of work is so-called because the blockchain is evidence of massive computation, that computation equals security. The security is what makes bitcoin valuable. The proof of work is the proof that energy and computing power were expended in securing a history that can never be altered. Furthermore, renewable energy can increasingly provide electricity for miners mitigating environmental concerns. Not to mention the environmental impact of continuously replacing paper currencies in hundreds of countries, gold mining resources "wasted" on gold just to sit in vaults, or all of the concrete and steel poured into thousands of banks across the globe.

What can it do?

Right now citizens of Venezuela are losing purchasing power of their money by 25,000% per year. Their failing government continues printing more money robbing constituents of their savings. When this happened in Zimbabwe and people needed wheelbarrows full of money to buy a single loaf of bread the residents had little recourse. But some Venezuelan locals are turning to crypto-currencies to flee the currency crisis, escape the inflation, and protect their ability to acquire food and shelter. It's capital flight away from a national currency without having to even leave their neighborhood because their $20 cell phone can now act like a global bank.
Global remittances account for over 500 billion dollars a year. International money transfer services require physically being near the local office during business hours. A fair amount of coordination is required to find an institution with local access in both countries. Transfers can take days to clear, and fees vary wildly and make it difficult to transfer small amounts. Bitcoin can send a transaction at any time from your phone to anywhere on the globe in seconds with negligible fees without any intermediary. It's not hard to see why in some places this industry is being heavily disrupted.
Credit cards are a "pull" system, meaning you give out your card number and anyone can pull money from it, this model is the cause of credit and debit card fraud. If your card info is ever compromised you will need a replacement card and sometimes have to fight with institutions for weeks, months, or years to get your money back or have your credit restored. Bitcoin is a "push" system, only you can spend your money. No fees or extra charges can ever be added without you manually sending them. Automatic payments can be set up on your end, but never "their" end.
Bitcoin is programmable and flexible, allowing money to flow around the world as easily as cat videos and memes. It can mimic the way we do business currently when we desire, but, so much more is possible that will never be viable with our current systems. In fact, we haven't even figured out what yet is possible because innovation has just begun. Until now the only ones that could innovate in the financial space are those with the connections to permissioned worldwide banking network. Now, a 19 year-old has created a global computer whereby the programs can never be silenced and money itself can be programmed. Ultimately this enables anyone to write the next killer banking app without permission from anyone; it's a free market of money. And we are just getting started.
submitted by mrcoolbp to CryptoTechnology [link] [comments]

Power consumption might be the death of BTC

With all the exuberance over the continual stream of ATH never-ending meme-fest that goes along with it, it seems that the citizens of /bitcoin only focus on good news. There is a pretty dark shadow hanging over the future of BTC, and any other proof-of-work crypto, and that is power consumption. Any time this topic comes up, there are maybe 10 semi-serious replies and the topic rarely gets above double-figure upvotes... seems like nobody wants to have their happy place invaded by reality.
So... some facts... today, the energy expenditure per transaction block is 275kWh (Source: https://digiconomist.net/bitcoin-energy-consumption) which is apparently the daily energy consumption of 9.3 US households... which in itself is a pretty high level of consumption. This is for one block. So the 0.05 BTC I sent my brother a couple of days ago cost (using my local energy costs) anything up to €38.50, which is (a) much more than the current TX fee, and much much more than the cost of the energy in whatever country the block was actually mined. The energy consumption, and more importantly, the CO2 output is, however, the same, being ~ 0.205 metric tonnes. (Source: https://www.epa.gov/energy/greenhouse-gas-equivalencies-calculator)
Yes, there is a renewable component to this energy consumption, but by and large, mining concentrates in areas of low energy cost, and that generally equates with fossil-fuel burning. This may change in the future, but it will be slow... possibly too slow.
Based on current transaction rate increase, current difficulty increase and current world energy production, there is an intersection point somewhere in the future where the energy demands of BTC transaction verification exceeds available energy resources. Add to this the fact that mining is a wholly consumptive process. It produces nothing except heat. Yes, it produces valid blocks, but only one block is valid... all other computation during that block cycle is completely wasted
People get hung up on various hard-forks, fake news and propaganda campaigns, attempts at regulation and control by state and other entities, but the real threat is sustainability. If this isn't addressed, that will be the death of BTC.
submitted by nowonmai to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

What I learnt about bitcoin the past 7 to ten days (Reposted from /r/Bitcoin

Greetings. Before I get into this let me just say that these are the personal observations of an internet greybeard. I am not a lawyer, a financial consultant, or an advisor of any kind. If you decide to do anything like I'm doing it, god help you and best of luck to you, you'll need both. I have no track record and less credibility.
First I'll give a TL;DR for those who would rather not read such a wordy post: bitcoin has much cool factor, is a potential investment vehicle if you don't mind some considerable risk, and yes, still has a long road ahead of it for broad adoption.
On to the thick of it:
First, some background. I'm not completely inexperienced with bitcoin, I first investigated it sometime in 2011; people were giving me bitcoin at the time in 5 coin batches, just for the asking, so I could experiment with it and try to figure out what it was and what it was good for. My interest involved using it as a currency in so-called 'virtual worlds'.
I accumulated about 15 coin at Mt. Gox, and shortly after, they got hacked. I was not compromised, and my coin was intact; so I moved it to another, seemingly more stable exchange. Before long, this interest took a back seat to something more productive and I pretty much forgot about it until the price took off like a rocket and it seemed I might have several tens of thousands of dollars squirreled away at that exchange, and when I went back to find it, the URL for the exchange had been abandoned and the exchange was gone, with my coin. By this time, the bull run was over and the coin was worth a few dollars again, and I gave it up and made a note to myself: Never again would I screw with bitcoin until I could find out how to secure it personally.
So, to the present: with the recent bull run, and bitcoin in the news because china and the banks suddenly warming up to it, I decided it was time to revisit it. With past lessons in mind, I began my research.
Here's what I've learned: 1. You don't need an exchange if you aren't actively trading coin. DIY and store your coin on paper. 2. Storing coin offline is easy with paper wallets. Workflows with paper wallets are non-trivial but not entirely tedious given the right tools. 3. The 'bitcoin community' is a marketplace only if you consider bitcoin to be their product.
The 'work for coin', and 'buy with coin' memes are pretty misleading; when you get out there and actually try to work for coin, currently at least, all the sites seem to be for show only; that is, getting registered and getting work breaks down; all the sites I interacted with had odd requirements (pass our entrance exams, and keep taking tests to rank up to a wage), broken signup procedures, or the like; none of them turned out to be useable in any meaningful way, with the possible exception of https://www.xbtfreelancer.com, but honestly I could starve quicker by not working at all than for working at the rates being offered on that site and suffer less in the process. The coin faucets are a complete waste of time, for any purpose. I spent two days gathering up 10 cents in order to test my paper wallet workflow; all but 2 cents were taken in transfer fees. Don't bother. One other source of 'work for coin', the reddit /Jobs4Bitcoins, seems legit, but again I think that the majority of the work offered there is offered at such a low wage I wouldn't bother, and the ratio of 'Hiring':'For Hire' is dismal; everyone wants to work for coin, but no one is offering coin for work, and the rates offered on the few jobs that are out there, well, they aren't quite as bad as what the faucets pay... I'll leave off commenting negatively on point 3 for now, and just sum it up as 'not quite ready for prime time'. Instead, I'll address bitcoin as the valuable product and service the community actually provides.
Bitcoin is a perfect example of a bubble. It's only value at present is that it is a proof of concept of a clearly superior mechanism for doing business of just about any kind. This drives excitement, and excitement fuels emotion. Anyone who has ever traded anything knows that emotion drives the marketplace. I say it is a bubble because in and of itself, bitcoin provides no value; yet it is currently trading at or near 400$US/coin. Only that we agree it provides some sort of value makes it valuable. That sounds a bit shady and potentially very risky; but it also happens to be precisely how fiat money works. This is why the banks are excited about the blockchain and not bitcoin. Silly bankers, I think they still don't get it.
A 'bubble' in a financial context is generally a negative description of a market; this is because the market so described is inflated. What they don't tell you is that while a bubble is generally considered 'bad' for an economic sector, a bubble does make a lot of money for some of the people involved. In short, it is an opportunity if you know how to take advantage of it. This requires timing. See 'technical analysis of markets'.
Enough of pandering to greed and need; lets talk a bit about how a regular guy without 150K$US in coin mining equipment can actually use coin to his advantage.
First thing is, don't quit your day job. You're going to need fiat. Period. It's what underpins the value of bitcoin, by design. There won't ever be a world where money is just valuable; unless it's made of pure gold and silver. Get used to that idea, because bitcoin was never meant to replace money, it was always meant as a medium of speculation and exchange; a complement to fiat. This is reflected in it's design.
The first thing for which you'll need fiat in this context is to purchase coin. From an investment perspective, there are three reasons to purchase coin. All benefit from technical marketplace analysis, which is used to do two very useful things: identify highs, and identify lows. Using these two pieces of information one generates signals. There are three kinds of signals: Buy, Sell, and Hold. Anyway, I was not going to talk about greed and need.
So yes, buy coin. Buy it cheap as you can. Then do one of these things with it: 1. Hold it. The overall trend since the beginning has been increased rates of exchange. If you hold it long enough, it will likely mature in value. If you decide to sell it, hopefully it will be for much more than you paid for it. 2. Lend it at interest. This is the functional equivalent of a bitcoin certificate of deposit. You lend the coin at a fixed rate of return and for a fixed period of time. The risks are the same as with any lending in which you might engage and are addressed with similar precautions. 3. Sell it when it's high, wait until it's low again, and buy it again. Repeat for as long as you are comfortable speculating.
I know, I said I was finished pandering to greed and need, but this is the thing that bitcoin is perhaps most useful for at this time.
Now to my original point number 2.
Looking down from my lofty perspective of ignorance, bitcoin works a bit like this (experts feel free to chime in here and correct me, I don't have the deepest technical knowlege of blockchain workings). Basically, a wallet is a cryptographic key value pair. Two big numbers. They are typically presented as both strings of text and QR codes. Both are not required; either will work. It is important to realize that the key/value pair is the 'account'. The values themselves. That is where your coin is stored.
This is the thing I missed at the beginning; had I known I could store my coin on paper with keys that have never seen the network, I'd never have lost my original stake. Note the phrase 'keys that have never seen the network'. These are a lot easier to come by than you might think; mine were generated offline in my browser with a little javascript. This also means that if you ever put your private key from such a wallet on the net, it is no longer secure, no matter what you do with the paper wallet. The crypto keys are the account, not the paper they are printed on. The private key is all you need to sweep the value out of it.
When you receive some bitcoin, that's a transaction. This transaction gets encrypted into a block on the blockchain. This encryption is cryptographically 'hot', which is to say it uses an unusually high amount of computational resource. Encrypting such a transaction is what is referred to as 'mining'. Blocks in the blockchain are a specific size, and when one is 'filled' by a miner, s/he creates a new bitcoin. There's more, but here we are at the limits of my understanding.
So, if wallets are so insecure, how do you ever get coin without it being hacked out from under you? Easy, you have it sent to the public address of one of these offline wallets. This is how every key-pair works; the public key is where the money is sent; the private key is how it is sent.
So, you want to spend your coin? It can be done; there are lots of places on the web that accept coin. I know of a very reliable, high quality hosting provider whom I can pay with coin; VPN services seem to traffic a lot of coin; and other things; from what I understand, it is the currency of the so-called 'dark web' (I wouldn't know first hand, never been there myself). Generally though, the way most of us will spend coin, is to convert it back to fiat. This can be tricky. That being said, it is no more tricky than say, selling your euros or your pesos, and perhaps not quite as tricky as cashing out of some stocks on the stock market. I'll leave it to the reader to decide how best to do that, largely because the landscape changes rapidly in that respect.
Which brings us to my final talking point, one mentioned but not one of my bulleted points: Risk. This whole damn thing is risky as hell. Don't tie up any more money with it than you are willing to lose. There are some things you can do that will help mitigate the risk, but not by a lot. Diversification comes to mind. That being said, most such strategies seem to look more like 'make money quicker and get out while you can' than they look like 'protecting my investment'.
Which brings us finally to my closing comments:
These are the personal observations of an internet greybeard. I am not a lawyer, a financial consultant, or an advisor of any kind. If you decide to do anything like I'm doing it, god help you and best of luck to you, you'll need both. I have no track record and less credibility. Come to think of it, I'll add this to my opening comments too.
EDIT: Typo
submitted by UnclaEnzo to BitcoinBeginners [link] [comments]

What I've learnt about bitcoin the past week or ten days

Greetings. Before I get into this let me just say that these are the personal observations of an internet greybeard. I am not a lawyer, a financial consultant, or an advisor of any kind. If you decide to do anything like I'm doing it, god help you and best of luck to you, you'll need both. I have no track record and less credibility.
First I'll give a TL;DR for those who would rather not read such a wordy post: bitcoin has much cool factor, is a potential investment vehicle if you don't mind some considerable risk, and yes, still has a long road ahead of it for broad adoption.
On to the thick of it:
First, some background. I'm not completely inexperienced with bitcoin, I first investigated it sometime in 2011; people were giving me bitcoin at the time in 5 coin batches, just for the asking, so I could experiment with it and try to figure out what it was and what it was good for. My interest involved using it as a currency in so-called 'virtual worlds'.
I accumulated about 15 coin at Mt. Gox, and shortly after, they got hacked. I was not compromised, and my coin was intact; so I moved it to another, seemingly more stable exchange. Before long, this interest took a back seat to something more productive and I pretty much forgot about it until the price took off like a rocket and it seemed I might have several tens of thousands of dollars squirreled away at that exchange, and when I went back to find it, the URL for the exchange had been abandoned and the exchange was gone, with my coin. By this time, the bull run was over and the coin was worth a few dollars again, and I gave it up and made a note to myself: Never again would I screw with bitcoin until I could find out how to secure it personally.
So, to the present: with the recent bull run, and bitcoin in the news because china and the banks suddenly warming up to it, I decided it was time to revisit it. With past lessons in mind, I began my research.
Here's what I've learned: 1. You don't need an exchange if you aren't actively trading coin. DIY and store your coin on paper. 2. Storing coin offline is easy with paper wallets. Workflows with paper wallets are non-trivial but not entirely tedious given the right tools. 3. The 'bitcoin community' is a marketplace only if you consider bitcoin to be their product.
The 'work for coin', and 'buy with coin' memes are pretty misleading; when you get out there and actually try to work for coin, currently at least, all the sites seem to be for show only; that is, getting registered and getting work breaks down; all the sites I interacted with had odd requirements (pass our entrance exams, and keep taking tests to rank up to a wage), broken signup procedures, or the like; none of them turned out to be useable in any meaningful way, with the possible exception of https://www.xbtfreelancer.com, but honestly I could starve quicker by not working at all than for working at the rates being offered on that site and suffer less in the process. The coin faucets are a complete waste of time, for any purpose. I spent two days gathering up 10 cents in order to test my paper wallet workflow; all but 2 cents were taken in transfer fees. Don't bother. One other source of 'work for coin', the reddit /Jobs4Bitcoins, seems legit, but again I think that the majority of the work offered there is offered at such a low wage I wouldn't bother, and the ratio of 'Hiring':'For Hire' is dismal; everyone wants to work for coin, but no one is offering coin for work, and the rates offered on the few jobs that are out there, well, they aren't quite as bad as what the faucets pay... I'll leave off commenting negatively on point 3 for now, and just sum it up as 'not quite ready for prime time'. Instead, I'll address bitcoin as the valuable product and service the community actually provides.
Bitcoin is a perfect example of a bubble. It's only value at present is that it is a proof of concept of a clearly superior mechanism for doing business of just about any kind. This drives excitement, and excitement fuels emotion. Anyone who has ever traded anything knows that emotion drives the marketplace. I say it is a bubble because in and of itself, bitcoin provides no value; yet it is currently trading at or near 400$US/coin. Only that we agree it provides some sort of value makes it valuable. That sounds a bit shady and potentially very risky; but it also happens to be precisely how fiat money works. This is why the banks are excited about the blockchain and not bitcoin. Silly bankers, I think they still don't get it.
A 'bubble' in a financial context is generally a negative description of a market; this is because the market so described is inflated. What they don't tell you is that while a bubble is generally considered 'bad' for an economic sector, a bubble does make a lot of money for some of the people involved. In short, it is an opportunity if you know how to take advantage of it. This requires timing. See 'technical analysis of markets'.
Enough of pandering to greed and need; lets talk a bit about how a regular guy without 150K$US in coin mining equipment can actually use coin to his advantage.
First thing is, don't quit your day job. You're going to need fiat. Period. It's what underpins the value of bitcoin, by design. There won't ever be a world where money is just valuable; unless it's made of pure gold and silver. Get used to that idea, because bitcoin was never meant to replace money, it was always meant as a medium of speculation and exchange; a complement to fiat. This is reflected in it's design.
The first thing for which you'll need fiat in this context is to purchase coin. From an investment perspective, there are three reasons to purchase coin. All benefit from technical marketplace analysis, which is used to do two very useful things: identify highs, and identify lows. Using these two pieces of information one generates signals. There are three kinds of signals: Buy, Sell, and Hold. Anyway, I was not going to talk about greed and need.
So yes, buy coin. Buy it cheap as you can. Then do one of these things with it: 1. Hold it. The overall trend since the beginning has been increased rates of exchange. If you hold it long enough, it will likely mature in value. If you decide to sell it, hopefully it will be for much more than you paid for it. 2. Lend it at interest. This is the functional equivalent of a bitcoin certificate of deposit. You lend the coin at a fixed rate of return and for a fixed period of time. The risks are the same as with any lending you might engage in and are addressed with similar precautions. 3. Sell it when it's high, wait until it's low again, and buy it again. Repeat for as long as you are comfortable speculating.
I know, I said I was finished pandering to greed and need, but this is the thing that bitcoin is perhaps most useful for at this time.
Now to my original point number 2.
Looking down from my lofty perspective of ignorance, bitcoin works a bit like this (experts feel free to chime in here and correct me, I don't have the deepest technical knowlege of blockchain workings). Basically, a wallet is a cryptographic key value pair. Two big numbers. They are typically presented as both strings of text and QR codes. Both are not required; either will work. It is important to realize that the key/value pair is the 'account'. The values themselves. That is where your coin is stored.
This is the thing I missed at the beginning; had I known I could store my coin on paper with keys that have never seen the network, I'd never have lost my original stake. Note the phrase 'keys that have never seen the network'. These are a lot easier to come by than you might think; mine were generated offline in my browser with a little javascript. This also means that if you ever put your private key from such a wallet on the net, it is no longer secure, no matter what you do with the paper wallet. The crypto keys are the account, not the paper they are printed on. The private key is all you need to sweep the value out of it.
When you receive some bitcoin, that's a transaction. This transaction gets encrypted into a block on the blockchain. This encryption is cryptographically 'hot', which is to say it uses an unusually high amount of computational resource. Encrypting such a transaction is what is referred to as 'mining'. Blocks in the blockchain are a specific size, and when one is 'filled' by a miner, s/he creates a new bitcoin. There's more, but here we are at the limits of my understanding.
So, if wallets are so insecure, how do you ever get coin without it being hacked out from under you? Easy, you have it sent to the public address of one of these offline wallets. This is how every key-pair works; the public key is where the money is sent; the private key is how it is sent.
So, you want to spend your coin? It can be done; there are lots of places on the web that accept coin. I know of a very reliable, high quality hosting provider whom I can pay with coin; VPN services seem to traffic a lot of coin; and other things; from what I understand, it is the currency of the so-called 'dark web' (I wouldn't know first hand, never been there myself). Generally though, the way most of us will spend coin, is to convert it back to fiat. This can be tricky. That being said, it is no more tricky than say, selling your euros or your pesos, and perhaps not quite as tricky as cashing out of some stocks on the stock market. I'll leave it to the reader to decide how best to do that, largely because the landscape changes rapidly in that respect.
Which brings us to my final talking point, one mentioned but not one of my bulleted points: Risk. This whole damn thing is risky as hell. Don't tie up any more money with it than you are willing to lose. There are some things you can do that will help mitigate the risk, but not by a lot. Diversification comes to mind. That being said, most such strategies seem to look more like 'make money quicker and get out while you can' than they look like 'protecting my investment'.
Which brings us finally to my closing comments:
These are the personal observations of an internet greybeard. I am not a lawyer, a financial consultant, or an advisor of any kind. If you decide to do anything like I'm doing it, god help you and best of luck to you, you'll need both. I have no track record and less credibility. Come to think of it, I'll add this to my opening comments too.
EDIT: Typo
submitted by UnclaEnzo to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

The Implications of Bitcoin

This is starting to develop into a series of posts (here is the first one on both steemit and reddit), I've thrown this post on steemit, though the full text is available here. My next post is already half done and will deal with wallets, personal security, and the future therein. A table of contents is on the way that will help organize these.
I realize many here are familiar with a lot of this information, but I aim to present it in a way that's understandable to people that haven't yet spent the time to research for hours. I would appreciate any comments or criticism in order to refine the ideas. I'm not trying to shill anything in particular, though I reference bitcoin specifically for a lot of reasons I won't go into right here, most if not all of what I explain could be applied to other cryptos. I don't wish to encourage people to "invest" in this tech, I only wish that they begin to learn about it. I think this technology will change the world no matter what we do right now, I simply wish to explain in plain English how it might benefit our global society.

The Implications of Bitcoin - Deciphering the Enigma

Money is one of the oldest technologies; it's older than writing; we know this because the first writing we find is keeping track of transactions. Money has held many forms (rock, bone, metal, paper, cloth, plastic, etc.), each generation of token ideally being more portable and harder to forge. Portability, (ease of moving around the tokens) increases what you can do with it, while forgeability describes how secure it is against counterfeiters. Modern banking is essentially impossible to forge, and is vastly more portable than physical tokens because it exists solely on banking networks. For those with access to modern banks, money has never been more free to move around. Enter Bitcoin; it is no less forgeable than its predecessor,but it's portability is exponentially increased, and being decentralized it introduces a new feature, it's open to everyone.

What is Bitcoin?

At first glance bitcoin appears very similar to how we already transact in the developed world; it's "just" digital money. We have paypal, venmo, online banking, and credit cards that allow us to move our money around. However, to call bitcoin similar is making a huge mistake and vastly misunderstanding its concept, philosophy, and power. Modern banking services are exclusive to the developed world and only accessed with the permission of for-profit, private institutions, the gatekeepers of local and global money transfer. In the developing world there are billions of people without access to any bank, and many more have limited access to even basic services. Often there's little competition which stifles innovation and increases monopolistic practices. It's these citizens of our global society that stand to benefit most from this technology in an immediate sense.
Bitcoin is a decentralized, open, and immutable means of exchanging value. There are several layers to this concept alone; most significantly, that bitcoin is fundamentally different from anything we have ever contemplated. This makes it difficult to understand the implications or benefits of such a revolutionary technology. It's an epochal shift in how we can transact and store value.
This system can be accessed by everyone, anywhere, anytime. It is neutral, trans-national, and facilitates the freedom of money. Bitcoin itself requires no personal information or account creation through a business, nation, or organization. One simply generates keys and is free to transact with anyone. There isn't a central authority to dictate who can and can't use the network, no gatekeepers, no one to freeze payments or hold funds.

How is Bitcoin Secure?

I think people are well-justified to be skeptical of bitcoin's security, it's often touted as "unhackable" or "immutable". I try not to speak in absolutes; so I simply state that it's not worth trying to hack because its security lies in cryptography and game-theory.
If you guessed my private key you could spend coins associated with that address. Computers can guess many times in a a second, but even with every computer on the planet it would take much longer than the universe has existed to guess the private keys to a single bitcoin address. This is still true even with 1,000 earths worth of computing power. This is cryptographic security.
Game theory sounds daunting but it's easy to understand, it's "the study of mathematical models of conflict and cooperation between intelligent rational decision-makers." In bitcoin this manifests through "proof of work" which amounts to "miners" using computers to do lots of math problems, the results of which get embedded in the transaction record (the blockchain), and they receive rewards for their effort of mining a block. Miners are incentivized to contribute to the system.

So what if we try to cheat?

The amount of money and resources required to assemble enough computing power to even attempt to cheat the system (the "51% attack") would cost more than any benefits of doing so because the attack has no guarantee of working, and it would be obvious to anyone looking at the transaction record. In some cases the cheating transaction could be routed-around, essentially erased, negating all the work put in by the attacker who still had to pony up all the computing hardware and electricity. It's simply more profitable to take those computing resources and just mine bitcoins instead of attempting an attack. Game theory at its finest.
Many criticize the computing power and electricity "wasted" on bitcoin mining. Another perspective is that all this computational expenditure is quite intentional because it maintains the security of the system. It's analogous to mining gold; gold ore is just a pile of rocks that require significant extraction and refining to yield highly valuable and useful gold. Bitcoin's proof of work is so-called because the blockchain is evidence of massive computation, that computation equals security. The security is what makes bitcoin valuable. The proof of work is the proof that energy and computing power were expended in securing a history that can never be altered. Furthermore, renewable energy can increasingly provide electricity for miners mitigating environmental concerns. Not to mention the environmental impact of continuously replacing paper currencies in hundreds of countries, gold mining resources "wasted" on gold just to sit in vaults, or all of the concrete and steel poured into thousands of banks across the globe.

What can it do?

Right now citizens of Venezuela are losing purchasing power of their money by 25,000% per year. Their failing government continues printing more money robbing constituents of their savings. When this happened in Zimbabwe and people needed wheelbarrows full of money to buy a single loaf of bread the residents had little recourse. But some Venezuelan locals are turning to crypto-currencies to flee the currency crisis, escape the inflation, and protect their ability to acquire food and shelter. It's capital flight away from a national currency without having to even leave their neighborhood because their $20 cell phone can now act like a global bank.
Global remittances account for over 500 billion dollars a year. International money transfer services require physically being near the local office during business hours. A fair amount of coordination is required to find an institution with local access in both countries. Transfers can take days to clear, and fees vary wildly and make it difficult to transfer small amounts. Bitcoin can send a transaction at any time from your phone to anywhere on the globe in seconds with negligible fees without any intermediary. It's not hard to see why in some places this industry is being heavily disrupted.
Credit cards are a "pull" system, meaning you give out your card number and anyone can pull money from it, this model is the cause of credit and debit card fraud. If your card info is ever compromised you will need a replacement card and sometimes have to fight with institutions for weeks, months, or years to get your money back or have your credit restored. Bitcoin is a "push" system, only you can spend your money. No fees or extra charges can ever be added without you manually sending them. Automatic payments can be set up on your end, but never "their" end.
Bitcoin is programmable and flexible, allowing money to flow around the world as easily as cat videos and memes. It can mimic the way we do business currently when we desire, but, so much more is possible that will never be viable with our current systems. In fact, we haven't even figured out what yet is possible because innovation has just begun. Until now the only ones that could innovate in the financial space are those with the connections to permissioned worldwide banking network. Now, a 19 year-old has created a global computer whereby the programs can never be silenced and money itself can be programmed. Ultimately this enables anyone to write the next killer banking app without permission from anyone; it's a free market of money. And we are just getting started.
submitted by mrcoolbp to CryptoCurrency [link] [comments]

The Implications of Bitcoin (x-post)

This is starting to develop into a series of posts (here is the first one on both steemit and reddit), I've thrown this post on steemit, though the full text is available here. My next post is already half done and will deal with wallets, personal security, and the future therein. A table of contents is on the way that will help organize these.
I realize many here are familiar with a lot of this information, but I aim to present it in a way that's understandable to people that haven't yet spent the time to research for hours. I would appreciate any comments or criticism in order to refine the ideas. I'm not trying to shill anything in particular, though I reference bitcoin specifically for a lot of reasons I won't go into right here, most if not all of what I explain could be applied to other cryptos. I don't wish to encourage people to "invest" in this tech, I only wish that they begin to learn about it. I think this technology will change the world no matter what we do right now, I simply wish to explain in plain English how it might benefit our global society.

The Implications of Bitcoin - Deciphering the Enigma

Money is one of the oldest technologies; it's older than writing; we know this because the first writing we find is keeping track of transactions. Money has held many forms (rock, bone, metal, paper, cloth, plastic, etc.), each generation of token ideally being more portable and harder to forge. Portability, (ease of moving around the tokens) increases what you can do with it, while forgeability describes how secure it is against counterfeiters. Modern banking is essentially impossible to forge, and is vastly more portable than physical tokens because it exists solely on banking networks. For those with access to modern banks, money has never been more free to move around. Enter Bitcoin; it is no less forgeable than its predecessor,but it's portability is exponentially increased, and being decentralized it introduces a new feature, it's open to everyone.

What is Bitcoin?

At first glance bitcoin appears very similar to how we already transact in the developed world; it's "just" digital money. We have paypal, venmo, online banking, and credit cards that allow us to move our money around. However, to call bitcoin similar is making a huge mistake and vastly misunderstanding its concept, philosophy, and power. Modern banking services are exclusive to the developed world and only accessed with the permission of for-profit, private institutions, the gatekeepers of local and global money transfer. In the developing world there are billions of people without access to any bank, and many more have limited access to even basic services. Often there's little competition which stifles innovation and increases monopolistic practices. It's these citizens of our global society that stand to benefit most from this technology in an immediate sense.
Bitcoin is a decentralized, open, and immutable means of exchanging value. There are several layers to this concept alone; most significantly, that bitcoin is fundamentally different from anything we have ever contemplated. This makes it difficult to understand the implications or benefits of such a revolutionary technology. It's an epochal shift in how we can transact and store value.
This system can be accessed by everyone, anywhere, anytime. It is neutral, trans-national, and facilitates the freedom of money. Bitcoin itself requires no personal information or account creation through a business, nation, or organization. One simply generates keys and is free to transact with anyone. There isn't a central authority to dictate who can and can't use the network, no gatekeepers, no one to freeze payments or hold funds.

How is Bitcoin Secure?

I think people are well-justified to be skeptical of bitcoin's security, it's often touted as "unhackable" or "immutable". I try not to speak in absolutes; so I simply state that it's not worth trying to hack because its security lies in cryptography and game-theory.
If you guessed my private key you could spend coins associated with that address. Computers can guess many times in a a second, but even with every computer on the planet it would take much longer than the universe has existed to guess the private keys to a single bitcoin address. This is still true even with 1,000 earths worth of computing power. This is cryptographic security.
Game theory sounds daunting but it's easy to understand, it's "the study of mathematical models of conflict and cooperation between intelligent rational decision-makers." In bitcoin this manifests through "proof of work" which amounts to "miners" using computers to do lots of math problems, the results of which get embedded in the transaction record (the blockchain), and they receive rewards for their effort of mining a block. Miners are incentivized to contribute to the system.

So what if we try to cheat?

The amount of money and resources required to assemble enough computing power to even attempt to cheat the system (the "51% attack") would cost more than any benefits of doing so because the attack has no guarantee of working, and it would be obvious to anyone looking at the transaction record. In some cases the cheating transaction could be routed-around, essentially erased, negating all the work put in by the attacker who still had to pony up all the computing hardware and electricity. It's simply more profitable to take those computing resources and just mine bitcoins instead of attempting an attack. Game theory at its finest.
Many criticize the computing power and electricity "wasted" on bitcoin mining. Another perspective is that all this computational expenditure is quite intentional because it maintains the security of the system. It's analogous to mining gold; gold ore is just a pile of rocks that require significant extraction and refining to yield highly valuable and useful gold. Bitcoin's proof of work is so-called because the blockchain is evidence of massive computation, that computation equals security. The security is what makes bitcoin valuable. The proof of work is the proof that energy and computing power were expended in securing a history that can never be altered. Furthermore, renewable energy can increasingly provide electricity for miners mitigating environmental concerns. Not to mention the environmental impact of continuously replacing paper currencies in hundreds of countries, gold mining resources "wasted" on gold just to sit in vaults, or all of the concrete and steel poured into thousands of banks across the globe.

What can it do?

Right now citizens of Venezuela are losing purchasing power of their money by 25,000% per year. Their failing government continues printing more money robbing constituents of their savings. When this happened in Zimbabwe and people needed wheelbarrows full of money to buy a single loaf of bread the residents had little recourse. But some Venezuelan locals are turning to crypto-currencies to flee the currency crisis, escape the inflation, and protect their ability to acquire food and shelter. It's capital flight away from a national currency without having to even leave their neighborhood because their $20 cell phone can now act like a global bank.
Global remittances account for over 500 billion dollars a year. International money transfer services require physically being near the local office during business hours. A fair amount of coordination is required to find an institution with local access in both countries. Transfers can take days to clear, and fees vary wildly and make it difficult to transfer small amounts. Bitcoin can send a transaction at any time from your phone to anywhere on the globe in seconds with negligible fees without any intermediary. It's not hard to see why in some places this industry is being heavily disrupted.
Credit cards are a "pull" system, meaning you give out your card number and anyone can pull money from it, this model is the cause of credit and debit card fraud. If your card info is ever compromised you will need a replacement card and sometimes have to fight with institutions for weeks, months, or years to get your money back or have your credit restored. Bitcoin is a "push" system, only you can spend your money. No fees or extra charges can ever be added without you manually sending them. Automatic payments can be set up on your end, but never "their" end.
Bitcoin is programmable and flexible, allowing money to flow around the world as easily as cat videos and memes. It can mimic the way we do business currently when we desire, but, so much more is possible that will never be viable with our current systems. In fact, we haven't even figured out what yet is possible because innovation has just begun. Until now the only ones that could innovate in the financial space are those with the connections to permissioned worldwide banking network. Now, a 19 year-old has created a global computer whereby the programs can never be silenced and money itself can be programmed. Ultimately this enables anyone to write the next killer banking app without permission from anyone; it's a free market of money. And we are just getting started.
submitted by mrcoolbp to btc [link] [comments]

[Table] IAmA: My name is Ryan Ackroyd and back in 2011 I was arrested for my part in the groups know as Lulz Security (LulzSec), Anonymous and Operation Anti Security (#AntiSec). I am LulzSec, AMA!

Verified? (This bot cannot verify AMAs just yet)
Date: 2014-04-03
Link to submission (Has self-text)
Questions Answers
What was it like being raided? GAME OVER PLEASE INSERT COINS.
Do you have any regrets about your involvement with those groups? Snowden, hero or villain? Why? There's no point regretting anything because you cannot undo the past. I heard about Snowden in prison, came on the news but I only know what the news has been telling me. I will look more in to it, he's got balls I can tell you that and I admire a good set of balls.
Really? Good set of balls? Are we not doing phrasing anymore? Yes really.
Any advice on learning how to program? I'm struggling with Python at the moment. You don't learn how to program, you learn how use a programming language, programming is what you do with that information. Read lots of examples of source code, see if you can work out whats going on. Don't just copy/paste the examples, write them word for word no matter how long they are. Not only will it help understand what it is doing better you may also learn a few tricks.
That's deep man. Thanks for the advice. No problem.
You don't learn how to program, you learn how use a programming language. Damn, pretty sweet quote there. It's also true.
How did you get started 'hacking'? I first started back in 1998 I mostly used to hack PC games, hex editing, binary reverse engineering stuff. Then I learned how to use C and assembly and it just went from there.
What do you recommend for someone that's interested in hacking(in terms of learning it)? Hacking is the art of reverse engineering, before you can reverse engineer something you need to have an in depth knowledge of it.
What are your thoughts on mass surveillance? Any advice for the masses? It's been going on longer than you or I have existed. Strong encryption is the key.
Ever considered a job with the NSA? GCHQ? I don't think I would pass the security clearance now anyways. I am x military though so who knows.
I am surprised you are allowed to use computers or the internet at all now considering some of the parole conditions of many American hackers. Can you talk about some of the restrictions in the SCPO and why you feel they are unfair? Basically it prevents me from using encryption that allows hidden volumes, virtual machines and I cannot delete my internet history. It lasts for 5 years and each breach of the order can be punishable up to 5 years.
It's not a case of them being fair or unfair. I can't go too in to detail about it if I want to take it back to court, I just want to challenge it, plus I like to keep my cards close to my chest.
So would say firefox's private browsing mode be against the rules? I don't think so, I'd have to check the src of firefox to determine if it deletes the history in private mode or if it simply does not record it in anyway. The order says "Not to delete".
So if you just image a fresh install of your variety of os(debian?) everyday would that break your parole? I could just boot live OS and not be in breach.
Is that what you do? I used to, remember slax?
Are you proud of the sacrifices you made in your lifetime? Yes I am, I never look back I just move forward in to the future hoping to find peace and happiness.
Did you meet anyone interesting in prison? There's some funny characters in prison I can tell you that, made friends for life. Most of the people in there were in there for fraud, drugs, gang stuff. I never met any famous prisoners if that's what you mean? Then again everyone's story in prison is interesting.
What is the best way to protect your digital identity, and secure your privacy? Since you have experience exploiting these vulnerabilities, what do you suggest to prevent it? Strong encryption, limit the amount of personal information you place on the internet, don't draw attention, only use a sandboxed browser and tunnel your HTTPS through SSH using the highest of encryption, PGP mail for every mail, don't store encryption keys on your computer, full disk encryption and/or hidden OS, use different emails for your banking, paypal etc, Mak3p4$5w0rdZ!nCr3d!b4LlYsTr0nG, uninstall flash use Link to youtube.com instead etc, etc...
Thanks for your answer. I am not worried about personal use, I am more worried about enterprise and or security systems. preventing people from hacking my companies website, and social media accounts. I have to keep in compliance with the financial standards, so we use PGP, and Erado, for archiving and encryption. It is just nice to get the perspective what is an easy target, what would you consider a difficult target not worth pursuing? I could write a book to answer this...
Security isn't something you can just apply it's an on going process and in most cases you are relying on products sold to you on a trust basis. You're told that Antivirus software will stop you getting a virus but what you're not told is that Antivirus software only protects you against what is known, takes less than an hour to write a new piece of malware or backdoor that your AV will never detect.
People put too much faith in to security systems without understanding how they work, their capabilities or limitations.
There's no need to be "pentested" it's a right con, they only test you against old exploits, if you update regular then you're already safe.
Use 2 factor authentication and/or strong password policy, prevent users creating the own password (they will only make them simpler)
Just make your data worthless to a hacker by encrypting it.
Insightful, thank you. I know it's a vague question, but you just confirmed my intuition. Thanks for your honest answers. No problem.
Was it worth going to prison? Nothing is worth going to prison for. Yeah they are happy I am back and I am happy to see them again. It was ~100GBP for my parents to come and visit me in prison, I was a long way from home. I told them not to waste their money because the visit only lasts 2 hours.
How is your family treating you, are they happy to have you back? Did they visit you in prison? I am x military I am used to being away from home for long periods of time. It also makes time fly faster when you're not constantly reminded about home. If you don't know what you are missing then you don't miss much.
I've never been to prison, but I lost about 8 years of my life due to bad medical advice. I used to be angry-- I was thinking why wasn't it only 2 years-- why did it have to be such a complete waste of so many years? Would that have happened if it had been only 2 years instead of 8? I don't think so. Sometimes, events like that helps to put things in to perspective. We often don't think about our lives on a day to day basis but when something out of the "norm" happens it makes us think that little more.
What do you think about bitcoin? where will it be in 10 years? I think it's great, scrypt coin too! I think they will get heavily regulated soon though. I had 78 bitcoins backed up on a SDHC before I was sent to prison. Back then they were worth ~$40 each. Come out of jail and I can't find that shit anywhere lol.
The only problem is even if I do find it, it's encrypted with keys that are on the computer the police confiscated and I can't get back.
I know right?
Sue them. They stole you $ 78k. It's killing me!
If they've not destroyed your computer or had a seize order against it then you can get back things like that. Ask your lawyer. They seized it in court, I can however apply "for a copy of evidence" under UK law and they would have to give me a copy of the HDD.
Do this. Those bitcoins won't last. How long untill they are orphaned? It's been ~3 years already.
No idea. I meant they won't last as a concept (especially not at that value). Wow, only just seen it but they peaked at ~$1000? Feels bad man.
Exactly - since then the Chinese and Russians have banned it, and you can only consider it's a downward spiral from there. I wonder how long it will last here in the west, I'm surprised it hasn't already been regulated the tax man must be pissed!
I think there are also more constructive uses for mining, I mentioned this on twitter also. See there are a lot of cancer researchers and scientists that have HUGE amounts of data that needs to be mined to help cure diseases and solve the worlds problems.
The world hash rate for crypto coins is more powerful than most of the worlds super computers combined. Cancer researchers should give coins for mining cancer research data instead of wasting time generating meaningless hashes.
Do you like sporks? Yes, I do, do you?
Hey man we are asking YOU the questions here. Leave the interrogations to us the professionals. Ok bro.
Ex Army eh? Signals? or Tech in REME? I was in the Infantry.
So how were you ID'd for arrest? I fucked up, I've already explained it on here, lurk moar.
Just curious, do you think big brother is reading this ama real time or at all? They will be on this like flies round shit.
Where does/did LulzSec congregate? What is the education background of a typical member, or from where did you learn to do what you can do? We had our own private IRCD and encrypted silc servers, also channels on public servers. I am completely self taught, I have been at it since 1998.
Isn't the true "lulzy" part of this that you guys bugged some people and mocked their security and then ended up getting busted and going to prison while the companies you annoyed made their security better? That's pretty lulzy to me. What I find lulzy is the fact they were all vulnerable to webapp vulnerabilites and don't use PGP.
Wasn't LulzSec responsible for the major Sony Online Entertainment security breach? I know you wanted to retaliate because SONY was suing George Holtz for the PS3 jailbreaking thing he did, but the only thing that happened is that you inconvenienced the people. Basically I am asking. Why did you ruin all those accounts, which lead to people having their credit cards stolen, instead of just attacking SONY directly. Also, how many accounts were compromised? LulzSec says 1000, SONY says ~4000. LulzSec had nothing to do with the PSN breach, fact.
Do you suspect who was responsible? (group name, not actual name) Honestly, no Idea there is too much internet rumor and no one has officially come forward to claim it. I read some people in Spain were arrested and questioned in relation to the PSN breach but that still doesn't mean it was them.
What are your political views? I don't really have any political views, however I would like to see the rest of the world get a chance to sample democracy and be free from oppressive dictatorships (no naming names).
At first welcome back. So here an total haxolulz/past unrelated question what kind of music do you like? I like Hard Dance music, Hard Trance/Hard House.
Fuck yeah! Trance and House all the way. I used to have a set of Technics 1210 Mk2 and mix like mad when I was younger, still got some of the vinyl haha.
Hackers soundtrack, orbitals by halicon. Not hard but one of my favorites. Thanks I'll check this out. The LuLzSec hacker song by ytcracker is the ONLY hacker song haha.Link to www.youtube.com
Who is your favorite Trance artist? Ever been to any festivals? Tidy boys, nothing but. Their events are awesome, youtube "Tidy weekender"
How came you guys got the cia down? It was hit with a 100,000 node botnet.
What does this mean in layman's terms? 100,000 computers were used to send ALOT of data to the server causing it crash.
That's as simple as it gets.
Any advice for aspiring hacktivists? Trust no one.
Still on 4chan? fav boards? Rules 1&2 always apply.
Hate to break it to you bro, but 4chan is just full of kids now. The rules of the internet have somewhat faded since you left the intertubes in 2011 :( consequences will never be the same again. Ebaums world has been dead a longtime because people broke 1&2
What's your opinion on the book by Parmy Olson? I think I recall she said she talked to you by chat, but how accurate was what eventually made it into the book? I lost the book before I could read it all so I don't know...
What do you think your job prospects are now with the conviction hanging over your head? Not too good! I'm on my arse at the minuet, I'll do any job!
Any job? ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°) Allmost...
Write a book. Is it really needed?
Not needed per se. But you can tell an autobiographical perspective that nobody else can. The story lulz & Anon supporters would want to hear. Obviously not a 'tell all' but a 'tell most'? Yeah I get what you mean.
Was there a time before you were caught that you were worried or thought the authorities might have a clue as to your real identity? I knew I was going to get caught, I fucked up.
Did you have a backup plan? There was no backup plan but I realized the mistake early and acted accordingly! No I do not own guns, they're a lot more restricted here in the UK.
Are you still in touch with Jason? Saw he went to prison recently, I actually went to HS with him. How long did he get?
Jeremy, not Jason. Twins. Yeah, I think he got 10 years or something like that? I've not heard anything from him since I got out, hope he is ok.
I look up to you on how you managed to convince everyone you're a girl, smart and funny thing at the same time. Really I look up to you like a celebrity, hah. Maintaining a strong persona such as kayla and doing what I did wasn't easy. If I could go back in time I wouldn't change anything, I'd just keep going back in time to relive it over and over again. Nothing is worth prison time, it's a waste of life however I did manage to get some qualifications out of it. Not many people can say they left prison with a diploma for the thing they went in for.
If you could go back in time, before the creation of Lulzsec, what would you do differently? Also, was Lulzsec's missions worth the prison time? Where did you learn social engineering, and hacking? I learned to do what I do from programming, it is simply reverse engineering.
Thank you for your answer. What do you think about the Syrian Electronic Army, their methods of attacks, and their meaning? I honestly believe they are state sponsored (possibly not from the beginning) but I do believe they are the people Assad is turning to. As for their methods I don't even know what methods they are using, I'll read in to it though, I'm fresh out of prison and most of what they have done was done while I had no internet access. I've been banned from the internet since 2011.
That they are, got many of Advanced Replacements on products. If you had to choose between, Windows or OSX which would you choose. I'd choose Windows, I'm not a fan of OSX.
This is probably the longest I've ever seen someone take questions in an AMA. Thank you for dedicating so much time to answering people's questions. No problem I enjoy answering questions and I will be here until the questions dry up.
How did it feel being able to get behind a computer for a first time in 2+ years? Did you build a rig to re-live the novelty or do anything particularly special? Porn, me thinks. I was able to use computers in prison. I was given a job as a class room assistant helping teach people about computers, basic things. I also managed to complete a number of computer related qualifications and gained a diploma. Seeing the internet after 2+ years was kind of strange though. The internet looks a lot different now compared to how it did in 2011. To be honest I don't like it, it has that "iphone look" to it all, big buttons and lots of unneeded JS. I wish I could build a rig I just do not have the money to do so. Hopefully soon I will find a nice job and maybe then I will build one.
Did you have internet in jail? No they do not allow internet in UK prisons.
Do you think access to the internet should be a human right? When will it be? Yes it should be and I am sure it is already so!
Here you go Link to www.wired.co.uk
My question: Did you ever have any suspicions about Sabu? At any point did you guys think, Something is up with this dude? Everyone had suspicions about everyone, things were being patched, rootkits disappearing, logs being leaked etc..
Was prison anything like you had expected it to be? Better than I thought it would be, I had most prison movies flashing in my head on the way there from court but it's nothing like that.
Could you elaborate more on what it's like please? Once I got to prison I realized it's nothing like the movies. Because it was all over the news when I was sentenced everyone in the jail knew who I was and what I was in for. I've made some good friends out it, people I am going to meet again once they are free. No one was ever violent towards me, you don't give any attitude you don't get any attitude. I did see some people get fucked up in there, mostly starts over something really silly, like a game of pool.
How did you pass the time? I used to pass the time playing chess with my cell mate or by watching all crazy people in there.
Did you personally encounter much violence in the prison? Or is it easy enough to stay away from it if you don't rock the boat or whatever? Well, most of the prison movies I have seen all show people stood at the bars, big guys growling "mmm fresh meat" and everyone getting stabbed up every 2 minuets. When you've never been to prison before you can't help but think back to every movie you've seen about prison.
When do you think the govt will evolve enough to have guys like you helping to grow our society? Right now it seeks to hunt you down...terrible waste of resources imo It is, there's a lot of talent rotting away in the prison system.
Administrations that in one breath expresses the need for engineers of digital space and then issues the order to capture the very people with such talents. Edit: its been many administrations haha :*( And many more to come!
Its wishful thinking but i hope that the economic imperative will win out as we progress to what can be depicted best by the Type I civilization coined by popular theoretical physicist Michio Kaku. Things need to change, that's for sure.
Is Milhouse a meme? Milhouse was the best meme!!
Do you like Wheatus? No, Wheatus sucks.
How do they ? Well I just like to suck wheats thats all.
What do you think - in Wrestlemania '98, did Mike Tyson get punched in the cock? Never watched it back then, I hope so!
Are you now like Gavin Orsay (Jimmi Simpson) on House of Cards? Never watched it, only just got out of prison I've heard a lot about that series, I'll look in to it.
Gavin in House of Cards has a guinea pig. Reminded me of "Noodles". :3. Hahaha.
the character Gavin is this hacker and there's a scene where he tells his FBI handler that they have to drop charges against Barrett Brown. Link to www.youtube.com Really?
Indeed. And check out who advised on the new season of HoC :3. Link to www.theguardian.com. HAHAHAHAHA.
Do they let you have PlayStation in British prisons? Link to www.dailymail.co.uk. They do if you buy the PlayStation.
What did you have in your cell? TV, Kettle, Radio, Bed, locker and that's it... I wasn't bothered about a play station, just used to play a lot of chess and poker.
What sort of people did you meet in association with the hacking groups? What kind of people are hackers? Out of everyone I have met there are only a small handful of people that I would put in to the "reverse engineehacker" bracket. Lots of people who know how to use exploits, not many who know how and why they work or are able to write their own, truly is a dieing art.
Do you ever think about trying to get hired for security for websites or for government computers or something along those lines? Again it's probably a trust issue...
Personally, I was very stupid and didn't really care about the ease with which personal information can spread, and didn't know how widespread NSA surveillance was. Given that a lot of stuff is out there already, if someone wanted to take the time to look at it, do you have any advice as to how to minimize the damage? Strong encryption is the key but to be honest, Internet Service Providers should be doing more to protect it's customers privacy, they should allow AES256 pipes for every customer as standard.
Many (fairly intelligent) people I talk to agree that they are concerned about surveillance and privacy on the internet, but they're resistant to try and use encryption or anything because they have it in their heads that only supergeniuses can understand computers like that. Do you have any suggestions for introducing these concepts to slightly technophobic people? I think encryption needs to be simplified for the regular user. It can get a bit confusing if you have never used it before or understand it's significance.
Also, wanted to thank you for your advice to the person below asking about how to learn programming. I know a little introductory Python, but I never really knew how to go from there to creating and understanding a whole big project. Programming languages too, learning new things is never easy, it's about determination and the will to succeed. The best way to learn is to read lots of source code and try to work out what is going on, maybe you could even improve on it?
How did you learn to hack? From learning to program.
Hacking is reverse engineering, it's an in depth knowledge of the underlying system/code/hardware/technology and the ability to take it apart piece by piece and reassemble it in to something else.
How long did it take you to become a proficient programmer? How did you learn? How long did it take you to become a proficient reverse engineer? How did you learn? I just learned from doing, trial and error. If there was something that I did not understand I would just research it, it sometimes helps to read it from more than one source. I used to just read lots of examples and try to make sense of them, if I found something new or something I did not understand I would research it.
As for time, I am unsure... I am still learning now, it is an on going process. All I can say is learn the basics and be creative, if there's something you do not understand research it, google always has the answer.
Have you only just got out of prison? I have been out a few weeks but I have only been on the internet a few days now.
Ever hear from anyone in that channel? Just one, those times are sadly gone.
When you got V&, they said two men where arrested for using the Kayla alias in some media. What happened there? The other person was my brother, they were unsure if it was him or me.
Ahh, You're poor brother... what happened when you got raided, how many people, where did they take you? I was home alone, they arrested me and took me to the police station for questioning. They told me during questioning that they had also been to arrest my brother.
Is human body very good build pc with very cheap soft?If it's so easy to exploit:( No it's a design prone to failure.
I want to learn Python 3. Codecademy is Python 2 (like all good tutorials...they seem to be for 2). Thanks for the links. I'll look into them. At the minuet I am going over logic, reading into some Verilog and other HDL because I want to experiment with some Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGA).
Hey its Kayla! Hahaha.
Hey thanks for the advice in the thread . I'll definitely use that on my quest to getting my Computer science thread and furthering my programming language knowledge ! No problem.
Kayla, I just want to say thank you. Haha no problem.
Meanwhile, while you were in prison our gov't set up a fake twitter type service in Cuba with the intent of helping topple the Cuban gov't. -_- I'd like to see how you have come to this conclusion? Or is it official and that is it's official purpose?
I just find it ironic that while prosecuting with one hand the other is going to extreme lengths to topple a government with social media. It's usually the case.
You should try this at /netsec. Possibly, no way to link them over? I'll admit it, this is the first time I've ever used or been to reddit.
They would probably have a few more knowledgeable comments and questions. Doesn't seem like any of them took the bait!
Yea, go to /netsec and create a new post, and make it a link (to the url of this thread). Make the title basically the same, but bring up the fact that it's an xpost. Thanks, I'll do this after I've made a coffee!
My question: why didn't you guys get ahead of the game by targeting Google. They're the resident evil today. Care to explain?
I think he meant Umbrella Corp. They have their hands in everything, and are mercilessly expanding. Fist umbrella fuck with zombies, now google!
#tr0ll. Hahaha, I'd like to believe it but...
Last updated: 2014-04-07 22:43 UTC
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Long live decentralized bitcoin: A reading list

Newbs might not know this, but bitcoin recently came out of an intense internal drama. Between July 2015 and August 2017 bitcoin was attacked by external forces who were hoping to destroy the very properties that made bitcoin valuable in the first place. This culminated in the creation of segwit and the UASF (user activated soft fork) movement. The UASF was successful, segwit was added to bitcoin and with that the anti-decentralization side left bitcoin altogether and created their own altcoin called bcash. Bitcoin's price was $2500, soon after segwit was activated the price doubled to $5000 and continued rising until here we are today at $15000.
During this drama, I took time away from writing open source code to help educate and argue on reddit, twitter and other social media. I came up with a reading list for quickly copypasting things. It may be interesting today for newbs or anyone who wants a history lesson on what exactly happened during those two years when bitcoin's very existence as a decentralized low-trust currency was questioned. Now the fight has essentially been won, I try not to comment on reddit that much anymore. There's nothing left to do except wait for Lightning and similar tech to become mature (or better yet, help code it and test it)
In this thread you can learn about block sizes, latency, decentralization, segwit, ASICBOOST, lightning network and all the other issues that were debated endlessly for over two years. So when someone tries to get you to invest in bcash, remind them of the time they supported Bitcoin Unlimited.

Summary / The fundamental tradeoff

A trip to the moon requires a rocket with multiple stages by gmaxwell (must read) https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/438hx0/a_trip_to_the_moon_requires_a_rocket_with/
Bram Cohen, creator of bittorrent, argues against a hard fork to a larger block size https://medium.com/@bramcohen/bitcoin-s-ironic-crisis-32226a85e39f#.558vetum4
gmaxwell's summary of the debate https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=1343716.msg13701818#msg13701818
Core devs please explain your vision (see luke's post which also argues that blocks are already too big) https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/61yvvv/request_to_core_devs_please_explain_your_vision/
Mod of btc speaking against a hard fork https://www.reddit.com/btc/comments/57hd14/core_reaction_to_viabtc_this_week/d8scokm/
It's becoming clear to me that a lot of people don't understand how fragile bitcoin is https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/59kflj/its_becoming_clear_to_me_that_a_lot_of_people/
Blockchain space must be costly, it can never be free https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/4og24h/i_just_attended_the_distributed_trade_conference/
Charlie Lee with a nice analogy about the fundamental tradeoff https://medium.com/@SatoshiLite/eating-the-bitcoin-cake-fc2b4ebfb85e#.444vr8shw
gmaxwell on the tradeoffs https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=1520693.msg15303746#msg15303746
jratcliff on the layering https://www.reddit.com/btc/comments/59upyh/segwit_the_poison_pill_for_bitcoin/d9bstuw/

Scaling on-chain will destroy bitcoin's decentralization

Peter Todd: How a floating blocksize limit inevitably leads towards centralization [Feb 2013] https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=144895.0 mailing list https://lists.linuxfoundation.org/pipermail/bitcoin-dev/2013-February/002176.html with discussion on reddit in Aug 2015 https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/3hnvi8/just_a_little_history_lesson_for_everyone_new_the/
Nick Szabo's blog post on what makes bitcoin so special http://unenumerated.blogspot.com/2017/02/money-blockchains-and-social-scalability.html
There is academic research showing that even small (2MB) increases to the blocksize results in drastic node dropoff counts due to the non-linear increase of RAM needed. http://bravenewcoin.com/assets/Whitepapers/block-size-1.1.1.pdf
Reddit summary of above link. In this table, you can see it estimates a 40% drop immediately in node count with a 2MB upgrade and a 50% over 6 months. At 4mb, it becomes 75% immediately and 80% over 6 months. At 8, it becomes 90% and 95%. https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5qw2wa_future_led_by_bitcoin_unlimited_is_a/dd442pw/
Larger block sizes make centralization pressures worse (mathematical) https://petertodd.org/2016/block-publication-incentives-for-miners
Talk at scalingbitcoin montreal, initial blockchain synchronization puts serious constraints on any increase in the block size https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TgjrS-BPWDQ&t=2h02m06s with transcript https://scalingbitcoin.org/transcript/montreal2015/block-synchronization-time
Bitcoin's P2P Network: The Soft Underbelly of Bitcoin https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y6kibPzbrIc someone's notes: https://gist.github.com/romyilano/5e22394857a39889a1e5 reddit discussion https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/4py5df/so_f2pool_antpool_btcc_pool_are_actually_one_pool/
In adversarial environments blockchains dont scale https://scalingbitcoin.org/transcript/hongkong2015/in-adversarial-environments-blockchains-dont-scale
Why miners will not voluntarily individually produce smaller blocks https://scalingbitcoin.org/transcript/hongkong2015/why-miners-will-not-voluntarily-individually-produce-smaller-blocks
Hal Finney: bitcoin's blockchain can only be a settlement layer (mostly interesting because it's hal finney and its in 2010) https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/3sb5nj/most_bitcoin_transactions_will_occur_between/
petertodd's 2013 video explaining this https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cZp7UGgBR0I
luke-jr's summary https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/61yvvv/request_to_core_devs_please_explain_your_vision/dficjhj/
Another jratcliff thread https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6lmpll/explaining_why_big_blocks_are_bad/

Full blocks are not a disaster

Blocks must be always full, there must always be a backlog https://medium.com/@bergealex4/bitcoin-is-unstable-without-the-block-size-size-limit-70db07070a54#.kh2vi86lr
Same as above, the mining gap means there must always be a backlog talk: https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=2453&v=iKDC2DpzNbw transcript: https://scalingbitcoin.org/transcript/montreal2015/security-of-diminishing-block-subsidy
Backlogs arent that bad https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/49p011/was_the_fee_event_really_so_bad_my_mind_is/
Examples where scarce block space causes people to use precious resources more efficiently https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/4kxxvj/i_just_singlehandedly_increased_bitcoin_network/
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/47d4m2/why_does_coinbase_make_2_transactions_pe
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/53wucs/why_arent_blocks_full_yet/d7x19iv
Full blocks are fine https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5uld1a/misconception_full_blocks_mean_bitcoin_is_failing/
High miner fees imply a sustainable future for bitcoin https://www.reddit.com/BitcoinMarkets/comments/680tvf/fundamentals_friday_week_of_friday_april_28_2017/dgwmhl7/
gmaxwell on why full blocks are good https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6b57ca/full_blocks_good_or_bad/dhjxwbz/
The whole idea of the mempool being "filled" is wrong headed. The mempool doesn't "clog" or get stuck, or anything like that. https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/7cusnx/to_the_people_still_doubting_that_this_congestion/dpssokf/

Segwit

What is segwit

luke-jr's longer summary https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6033h7/today_is_exactly_4_months_since_the_segwit_voting/df3tgwg/?context=1
Charlie Shrem's on upgrading to segwit https://twitter.com/CharlieShrem/status/842711238853513220
Original segwit talk at scalingbitcoin hong kong + transcript https://youtu.be/zchzn7aPQjI?t=110
https://scalingbitcoin.org/transcript/hongkong2015/segregated-witness-and-its-impact-on-scalability
Segwit is not too complex https://www.reddit.com/btc/comments/57vjin/segwit_is_not_great/d8vos33/
Segwit does not make it possible for miners to steal coins, contrary to what some people say https://www.reddit.com/btc/comments/5e6bt0/concerns_with_segwit_and_anyone_can_spend/daa5jat/?context=1
https://keepingstock.net/segwit-eli5-misinformation-faq-19908ceacf23#.r8hlzaquz
Segwit is required for a useful lightning network It's now known that without a malleability fix useful indefinite channels are not really possible.
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5tzqtc/gentle_reminder_the_ln_doesnt_require_segwit/ddqgda7/
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5tzqtc/gentle_reminder_the_ln_doesnt_require_segwit/ddqbukj/
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5x2oh0/olaoluwa_osuntokun_all_active_lightning_network/deeto14/?context=3
Clearing up SegWit Lies and Myths: https://achow101.com/2016/04/Segwit-FUD-Clearup
Segwit is bigger blocks https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5pb8vs/misinformation_is_working_54_incorrectly_believe/dcpz3en/
Typical usage results in segwit allowing capacity equivalent to 2mb blocks https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/69i2md/observe_for_yourself_segwit_allows_2_mb_blocks_in/

Why is segwit being blocked

Jihan Wu (head of largest bitcoin mining group) is blocking segwit because of perceived loss of income https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/60mb9e/complete_high_quality_translation_of_jihans/
Witness discount creates aligned incentives https://segwit.org/why-a-discount-factor-of-4-why-not-2-or-8-bbcebe91721e#.h36odthq0 https://medium.com/@SegWit.co/what-is-behind-the-segwit-discount-988f29dc1edf#.sr91dg406
or because he wants his mining enterprise to have control over bitcoin https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6jdyk8/direct_report_of_jihan_wus_real_reason_fo

Segwit is being blocked because it breaks ASICBOOST, a patented optimization used by bitmain ASIC manufacturer

Details and discovery by gmaxwell https://lists.linuxfoundation.org/pipermail/bitcoin-dev/2017-April/013996.html
Reddit thread with discussion https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/63otrp/gregory_maxwell_major_asic_manufacturer_is/
Simplified explaination by jonny1000 https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/64qq5g/attempted_explanation_of_the_alleged_asicboost/
http://www.mit.edu/~jlrubin/public/pdfs/Asicboost.pdf
https://medium.com/@jimmysong/examining-bitmains-claims-about-asicboost-1d61118c678d
Evidence https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/63yo27/some_circumstantial_evidence_supporting_the_claim/
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/63vn5g/please_dont_stop_us_from_using_asicboost_which/dfxmm75/
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/63soe3/reverse_engineering_an_asic_is_a_significant_task/dfx9nc
Bitmain admits their chips have asicboost but they say they never used it on the network (haha a likely story) https://blog.bitmain.com/en/regarding-recent-allegations-smear-campaigns/
Worth $100m per year to them (also in gmaxwell's original email) https://twitter.com/petertoddbtc/status/849798529929424898
Other calculations show less https://medium.com/@vcorem/the-real-savings-from-asicboost-to-bitmaintech-ff265c2d305b
This also blocks all these other cool updates, not just segwit https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/63otrp/gregory_maxwell_major_asic_manufacturer_is/dfw0ej3/
Summary of bad consequences of asicboost https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/64qq5g/attempted_explanation_of_the_alleged_asicboost/dg4hyqk/?context=1
Luke's summary of the entire situation https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6ego3s/why_is_killing_asicboost_not_a_priority/diagkkb/?context=1
Prices goes up because now segwit looks more likely https://twitter.com/TuurDemeestestatus/849846845425799168
Asicboost discovery made the price rise https://twitter.com/TuurDemeestestatus/851520094677200901
A pool was caught red handed doing asicboost, by this time it seemed fairly certain that segwit would get activated so it didnt produce as much interest as earlier https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6p7lr5/1hash_pool_has_mined_2_invalid_blocks/ and https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6p95dl/interesting_1hash_pool_mined_some_invalid_blocks/ and https://twitter.com/petertoddbtc/status/889475196322811904
This btc user is outraged at the entire forum because they support Bitmain and ASICBOOST https://www.reddit.com/btc/comments/67t43y/dragons_den_planned_smear_campaign_of_bitmain/dgtg9l2/
Antbleed, turns out Bitmain can shut down all its ASICs by remote control: http://www.antbleed.com/

What if segwit never activates

What if segwit never activates? https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6ab8js/transaction_fees_are_now_making_btc_like_the_banks/dhdq3id/ with https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5ksu3o/blinded_bearer_certificates/ and https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/4xy0fm/scaling_quickly/

Lightning

bitcoinmagazine's series on what lightning is and how it works https://bitcoinmagazine.com/articles/understanding-the-lightning-network-part-building-a-bidirectional-payment-channel-1464710791/ https://bitcoinmagazine.com/articles/understanding-the-lightning-network-part-creating-the-network-1465326903/ https://bitcoinmagazine.com/articles/understanding-the-lightning-network-part-completing-the-puzzle-and-closing-the-channel-1466178980/
The Lightning Network ELIDHDICACS (Explain Like I Don’t Have Degrees in Cryptography and Computer Science) https://letstalkbitcoin.com/blog/post/the-lightning-network-elidhdicacs
Ligtning will increases fees for miners, not lower them https://medium.com/lightning-resources/the-lightning-paradox-f15ce0e8e374#.erfgunumh
Cost-benefit analysis of lightning from the point of view of miners https://medium.com/@rusty_lightning/miners-and-bitcoin-lightning-a133cd550310#.x42rovlg8
Routing blog post by rusty https://medium.com/@rusty_lightning/routing-dijkstra-bellman-ford-and-bfg-7715840f004 and reddit comments https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/4lzkz1/rusty_russell_on_lightning_routing_routing/
Lightning protocol rfc https://github.com/lightningnetwork/lightning-rfc
Blog post with screenshots of ln being used on testnet https://medium.com/@btc_coach/lightning-network-in-action-b18a035c955d video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mxGiMu4V7ns
Video of sending and receiving ln on testnet https://twitter.com/alexbosworth/status/844030573131706368
Lightning tradeoffs http://www.coindesk.com/lightning-technical-challenges-bitcoin-scalability/
Beer sold for testnet lightning https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/62uw23/lightning_network_is_working_room77_is_accepting/ and https://twitter.com/MrHodl/status/848265171269283845
Lightning will result in far fewer coins being stored on third parties because it supports instant transactions https://medium.com/@thecryptoconomy/the-barely-discussed-incredible-benefit-of-the-lightning-network-4ce82c75eb58
jgarzik argues strongly against LN, he owns a coin tracking startup https://twitter.com/petertoddbtc/status/860826532650123264 https://twitter.com/Beautyon_/status/886128801926795264
luke's great debunking / answer of some misinformation questions https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6st4eq/questions_about_lightning_network/dlfap0u/
Lightning centralization doesnt happen https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6vzau5/reminder_bitcoins_key_strength_is_in_being/dm4ou3v/?context=1
roasbeef on hubs and charging fees https://twitter.com/roasbeef/status/930209165728825344 and https://twitter.com/roasbeef/status/930210145790976000

Immutability / Being a swiss bank in your pocket / Why doing a hard fork (especially without consensus) is damaging

A downside of hard forks is damaging bitcoin's immutability https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5em6vu/what_happens_if_segwit_doesnt_activate/dae1r6c/?context=3
Interesting analysis of miners incentives and how failure is possible, don't trust the miners for long term https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5gtew4/why_an_increased_block_size_increases_the_cost_of/daybazj/?context=2
waxwing on the meaning of cash and settlement https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5ei7m3/unconfirmed_transactions_60k_total_fees_14btc/dad001v/
maaku on the cash question https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5i5iq5/we_are_spoiled/db5luiv/?context=1
Digital gold funamentalists gain nothing from supporting a hard fork to larger block sizes https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5xzunq/core_please_compromise_before_we_end_up_with_bu/dem73xg/?context=1
Those asking for a compromise don't understand the underlying political forces https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6ef7wb/some_comments_on_the_bip148_uasf_from_the/dia236b/?context=3
Nobody wants a contentious hard fork actually, anti-core people got emotionally manipulated https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5sq5ocontentious_forks_vs_incremental_progress/ddip57o/
The hard work of the core developers has kept bitcoin scalable https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/3hfgpo/an_initiative_to_bring_advanced_privacy_features/cu7mhw8?context=9
Recent PRs to improve bitcoin scaleability ignored by the debate https://twitter.com/jfnewbery/status/883001356168167425
gmaxwell against hard forks since 2013 https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=140233.20
maaku: hard forks are really bad https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5zxjza/adam_greg_core_devs_and_big_blockers_now_is_the/df275yk/?context=2

Some metrics on what the market thinks of decentralization and hostile hard forks

The price history shows that the exchange rate drops every time a hard fork threatens: https://i.imgur.com/EVPYLR8.jpg
and this example from 2017 https://twitter.com/WhalePanda/status/845562763820912642
http://imgur.com/a/DuHAn btc users lose money
price supporting theymos' moderation https://i.imgur.com/0jZdF9h.png
old version https://i.imgur.com/BFTxTJl.png
older version https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CxqtUakUQAEmC0d.jpg
about 50% of nodes updated to the soft fork node quite quickly https://imgur.com/O0xboVI

Bitcoin Unlimited / Emergent Consensus is badly designed, changes the game theory of bitcoin

Bitcoin Unlimited was a proposed hard fork client, it was made with the intention to stop segwit from activating
A Future Led by Bitcoin Unlimited is a Centralized Future https://blog.sia.tech/a-future-led-by-bitcoin-unlimited-is-a-centralized-future-e48ab52c817a#.p1ly6hldk
Flexible transactions are bugged https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/57tf5g/bitcoindev_bluematt_on_flexible_transactions/
Bugged BU software mines an invalid block, wasting 13 bitcoins or $12k
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5qwtr2/bitcoincom_loses_132btc_trying_to_fork_the/
https://www.reddit.com/btc/comments/5qx18i/bitcoincom_loses_132btc_trying_to_fork_the/
bitcoin.com employees are moderators of btc https://medium.com/@WhalePanda/the-curious-relation-between-bitcoin-com-anti-segwit-propaganda-26c877249976#.vl02566k4
miners don't control stuff like the block size http://hackingdistributed.com/2016/01/03/time-for-bitcoin-user-voice/
even gavin agreed that economic majority controls things https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5ywoi9/in_2010_gavin_predicted_that_exchanges_ie_the/
fork clients are trying to steal bitcoin's brand and network effect, theyre no different from altcoins https://medium.com/@Coinosphere/why-bitcoin-unlimited-should-be-correctly-classified-as-an-attempted-robbery-of-bitcoin-not-a-9355d075763c#.qeaynlx5m
BU being active makes it easier to reverse payments, increases wasted work making the network less secure and giving an advantage to bigger miners https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5g1x84/bitcoin_unlimited_bu_median_value_of_miner_eb/
bitcoin unlimited takes power away from users and gives it to miners https://medium.com/@alpalpalp/bitcoin-unlimiteds-placebo-controls-6320cbc137d4#.q0dv15gd5
bitcoin unlimited's accepted depth https://twitter.com/tdryja/status/804770009272696832
BU's lying propaganda poster https://imgur.com/osrViDE

BU is bugged, poorly-reviewed and crashes

bitcoin unlimited allegedly funded by kraken stolen coins
https://www.reddit.com/btc/comments/55ajuh/taint_analysis_on_bitcoin_stolen_from_kraken_on/
https://www.reddit.com/btc/comments/559miz/taint_analysis_on_btc_allegedly_stolen_from_kraken/
Other funding stuff
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5zozmn/damning_evidence_on_how_bitcoin_unlimited_pays/
A serious bug in BU https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5h70s3/bitcoin_unlimited_bu_the_developers_have_realized/
A summary of what's wrong with BU: https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5z3wg2/jihanwu_we_will_switch_the_entire_pool_to/devak98/

Bitcoin Unlimited Remote Exploit Crash 14/3/2017

https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5zdkv3/bitcoin_unlimited_remote_exploit_crash/ https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5zeb76/timbe https://www.reddit.com/btc/comments/5zdrru/peter_todd_bu_remote_crash_dos_wtf_bug_assert0_in/
BU devs calling it as disaster https://twitter.com/SooMartindale/status/841758265188966401 also btc deleted a thread about the exploit https://i.imgur.com/lVvFRqN.png
Summary of incident https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5zf97j/i_was_undecided_now_im_not/
More than 20 exchanges will list BTU as an altcoin
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5zyg6g/bitcoin_exchanges_unveil_emergency_hard_fork/
Again a few days later https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/60qmkt/bu_is_taking_another_shit_timberrrrr

User Activated Soft Fork (UASF)

site for it, including list of businesses supporting it http://www.uasf.co/
luke's view
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5zsk45/i_am_shaolinfry_author_of_the_recent_usedf1dqen/?context=3
threat of UASF makes the miner fall into line in litecoin
https://www.reddit.com/litecoin/comments/66omhlitecoin_global_roundtable_resolution/dgk2thk/?context=3
UASF delivers the goods for vertcoin
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/692mi3/in_test_case_uasf_results_in_miner_consensus/dh3cm34/?context=1
UASF coin is more valuable https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6cgv44/a_uasf_chain_will_be_profoundly_more_valuable/
All the links together in one place https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6dzpew/hi_its_mkwia_again_maintainer_of_uasfbitcoin_on/
p2sh was a uasf https://github.com/bitcoin/bitcoin/blob/v0.6.0/src/main.cpp#L1281-L1283
jgarzik annoyed at the strict timeline that segwit2x has to follow because of bip148 https://twitter.com/jgarzik/status/886605836902162432
Committed intolerant minority https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6d7dyt/a_plea_for_rational_intolerance_extremism_and/
alp on the game theory of the intolerant minority https://medium.com/@alpalpalp/user-activated-soft-forks-and-the-intolerant-minority-a54e57869f57
The risk of UASF is less than the cost of doing nothing https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6bof7a/were_getting_to_the_point_where_a_the_cost_of_not/
uasf delivered the goods for bitcoin, it forced antpool and others to signal (May 2016) https://bitcoinmagazine.com/articles/antpool-will-not-run-segwit-without-block-size-increase-hard-fork-1464028753/ "When asked specifically whether Antpool would run SegWit code without a hard fork increase in the block size also included in a release of Bitcoin Core, Wu responded: “No. It is acceptable that the hard fork code is not activated, but it needs to be included in a ‘release’ of Bitcoin Core. I have made it clear about the definition of ‘release,’ which is not ‘public.’”"
Screenshot of peter rizun capitulating https://twitter.com/chris_belcher_/status/905231603991007232

Fighting off 2x HF

https://twitter.com/MrHodl/status/895089909723049984
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6h612o/can_someone_explain_to_me_why_core_wont_endorse/?st=j6ic5n17&sh=cc37ee23
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6smezz/segwit2x_hard_fork_is_completely_useless_its_a/?st=j6ic2aw3&sh=371418dd
https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6sbspv/who_exactly_is_segwit2x_catering_for_now_segwit/?st=j6ic5nic&sh=1f86cadd
https://medium.com/@elliotolds/lesser-known-reasons-to-keep-blocks-small-in-the-words-of-bitcoin-core-developers-44861968185e
b2x is most of all about firing core https://twitter.com/WhalePanda/status/912664487135760384
https://medium.com/@StopAndDecrypt/thats-not-bitcoin-this-is-bitcoin-95f05a6fd6c2

Misinformation / sockpuppets

https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6uqz6k/markets_update_bitcoin_cash_rallies_for_three/dlurbpx/
three year old account, only started posting today https://archive.is/3STjH
Why we should not hard fork after the UASF worked: https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6sl1qf/heres_why_we_should_not_hard_fork_in_a_few_months/

History

Good article that covers virtually all the important history https://bitcoinmagazine.com/articles/long-road-segwit-how-bitcoins-biggest-protocol-upgrade-became-reality/
Interesting post with some history pre-2015 https://btcmanager.com/the-long-history-of-the-fight-over-scaling-bitcoin/
The core scalabality roadmap + my summary from 3/2017 https://lists.linuxfoundation.org/pipermail/bitcoin-dev/2015-Decembe011865.html my summary https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5xa5fa/the_core_development_scalability_roadmap/
History from summer 2015 https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/5xg7f8/the_origins_of_the_blocksize_debate/
Brief reminders of the ETC situation https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6nvlgo/simple_breakdown_of_bip91_its_simply_the_miners/dkcycrz/
Longer writeup of ethereum's TheDAO bailout fraud https://www.reddit.com/ethereumfraud/comments/6bgvqv/faq_what_exactly_is_the_fraud_in_ethereum/
Point that the bigblocker side is only blocking segwit as a hostage https://www.reddit.com/BitcoinMarkets/comments/5sqhcq/daily_discussion_wednesday_february_08_2017/ddi3ctv/?context=3
jonny1000's recall of the history of bitcoin https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6s34gg/rbtc_spreading_misinformation_in_rbitcoinmarkets/dl9wkfx/

Misc (mostly memes)

libbitcoin's Understanding Bitcoin series (another must read) https://github.com/libbitcoin/libbitcoin/wiki/Understanding-Bitcoin
github commit where satoshi added the block size limit https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/63859l/github_commit_where_satoshi_added_the_block_size/
hard fork proposals from some core devs https://bitcoinhardforkresearch.github.io/
blockstream hasnt taken over the entire bitcoin core project https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/622bjp/bitcoin_core_blockstream/
blockstream is one of the good guys https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6cttkh/its_happening_blockstream_opens_liquid_sidechain/dhxu4e
Forkers, we're not raising a single byte! Song lyrics by belcher https://gist.github.com/chris-belche7264cd6750a86f8b4a9a
Some stuff here along with that cool photoshopped poster https://medium.com/@jimmysong/bitcoin-realism-or-how-i-learned-to-stop-worrying-and-love-1mb-blocks-c191c35e74cb
Nice graphic https://twitter.com/RNR_0/status/871070843698380800
gmaxwell saying how he is probably responsible for the most privacy tech in bitcoin, while mike hearn screwed up privacy https://www.reddit.com/btc/comments/6azyme/hey_bu_wheres_your_testnet/dhiq3xo/?context=6
Fairly cool propaganda poster https://twitter.com/urbanarson/status/880476631583924225
btc tankman https://i.redd.it/gxjqenzpr27z.png https://twitter.com/DanDarkPill/status/853653168151986177
asicboost discovery meme https://twitter.com/allenscottoshi/status/849888189124947971
https://twitter.com/urbanarson/status/882020516521013250
gavin wanted to kill the bitcoin chain https://twitter.com/allenscottoshi/status/849888189124947971
stuff that btc believes https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6ld4a5/serious_is_the_rbtc_and_the_bu_crowd_a_joke_how/djszsqu/
after segwit2x NYA got agreed all the fee pressure disappeared, laurenmt found they were artificial spam https://twitter.com/i/moments/885827802775396352
theymos saying why victory isnt inevitable https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6lmpll/explaining_why_big_blocks_are_bad/djvxv2o/
with ignorant enemies like these its no wonder we won https://bitco.in/forum/threads/gold-collapsing-bitcoin-up.16/page-999 ""So, once segwit2x activates, from that moment on it will require a coordinated fork to avoid the up coming "baked in" HF. ""
a positive effect of bcash, it made blockchain utxo spammers move away from bitcoin https://www.reddit.com/btc/comments/76lv0b/cryptograffitiinfo_now_accepts_bitcoin_cash/dof38gw/
summary of craig wright, jihan wu and roger ver's positions https://medium.com/@HjalmarPeters/the-big-blockers-bead6027deb2
Why is bitcoin so strong against attack?!?! (because we're motivated and awesome) https://www.reddit.com/btc/comments/64wo1h/bitcoin_unlimited_is_being_blocked_by_antivirus/dg5n00x/
what happened to #oldjeffgarzik https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/6ufv5x/a_reminder_of_some_of_jeff_garziks_greatest/
big blockers fully deserve to lose every last bitcoin they ever had and more https://www.reddit.com/BitcoinMarkets/comments/756nxf/daily_discussion_monday_october_09_2017/do5ihqi/
gavinandresen brainstorming how to kill bitcoin with a 51% in a nasty way https://twitter.com/btcdrak/status/843914877542567937
Roger Ver as bitcoin Judas https://imgur.com/a/Rf1Pi
A bunch of tweets and memes celebrating UASF
https://twitter.com/shaolinfry/status/842457019286188032 | https://twitter.com/SatoshiLite/status/888335092560441345 | https://twitter.com/btcArtGallery/status/887485162925285377 | https://twitter.com/Beautyon_/status/888109901611802624 | https://twitter.com/Excellion/status/889211512966873088 | https://twitter.com/lopp/status/888200452197801984 | https://twitter.com/AlpacaSW/status/886988980524396544 | https://twitter.com/BashCo_/status/877253729531162624 | https://twitter.com/tdryja/status/865212300361379840 | https://twitter.com/Excellion/status/871179040157179904 | https://twitter.com/TraceMayestatus/849856343074902016 | https://twitter.com/TraceMayestatus/841855022640033792 | https://fs.bitcoinmagazine.com/img/images/Screen_Shot_2017-08-18_at_01.36.47.original.png
submitted by belcher_ to UASF [link] [comments]

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