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The White Dragon : A Canadian Dragon Portfolio

Alright guys, Ive been working on this for a while and a post on here by a guy describing his portfolio here was the final kick in the ass for me to put this together. I started writing this to summarize what Im doing for my friends who are beginners, and also for me to make some sense of it for myself
Hopefully parts of it are useful to you, and also ideally you guys can point out errors or have a suggestion or two. I'm posting this here as opposed to investing or canadianinvestor (blech) because they're just gonna tell me to buy an index fund.
This first section is a preamble describing the Canadian tax situation and why Im doing things the way that I am. Feel free to skip it if you dont care about that. Also, there might be mistake regarding what the laws are here so dont take my word for it and verify it for yourself please.
So here in Canada we have two types of registered accounts (theres actually more but whatver). There is the TFSA "Tax Free Savings Account", and RRSP "Registered Retirement Savings Account"
For the sake of simplicity, from the time you turn 18 you are allowed to deposit 5k (it changes year to year based on inflation etc)in each of them. That "room" accumulates retroactively, so if you haventdone anything and are starting today and you are 30 you have around 60k you can put in each of them. The prevailing wisdom is that you should max out the TFSA first and you'll see why in a minute.

TFSA is post tax deposits, with no capital gains or other taxes applied to selling your securities, dividends or anything else. You can withdraw your gains at any time, and the amount that you withdraw is added to the "room" you have for the next year. So lets say I maxed out my TFSA contributions and I take out 20k today, on January of next year I can put back in 20k plus the 5 or whatever they allow for that year. You can see how powerful this is. Theres a few limitations on what is eligable to be held in the TFSA such as bitcoin/bitcoin ETFs, overseas stocks that arent listed on NYSE, TSX, london and a few others. You can Buy to Open and Sell to Close call and put options as well as write Covered Calls.

The RRSP is pre-tax deposits and is a tax deferred scheme. You deposit to lower your income tax burden (and hopefully drop below a bracket) but once you retire you will be taxed on anything you pull out. Withdrawing early has huge penalties and isnt recommended. You are however allowed to borrow against it for a down payment as a first time home buyer. The strategy with these is that a youngperson entering the workforce is likely to be in a fairly low tax bracket and (hopefully) earns more money as they get older and more skilled so the RRSP has more value the greater your pre-taxincome is. You can also do this Self Directed. Its not relevant to this strategy but I included it for the sake of context.
Non registered accounts ( or any other situation, such as selling commercial real estate etc) is subject to a capital gains tax. In so far as I understand it, you add all your gains and losses up at the end of the year. If its a positive number, you cut that number IN HALF and add it to your regular pre-tax income. So if I made 60k from the dayjob and 20k on my margin account that adds up to 70k that I get taxed on. if its a loss, you carry that forward into the next year. Theres no distinction between long term and short term. Also physical PMs are treated differently and I'll fill that part in later once I have the details down.
The reason why all that babble is important is that my broker Questrade, which isnt as good as IB (the only real other option up here as far as Im aware) has one amazing feature that no other broker has: "Margin Power"
If you have a TFSA and a Margin account with them, you can link them together and have your securities in the TFSA collateralise your Margin account. Essentially, when it comes to the Maintenance Excess of the Margin Account QT doesnt care if its in the TFSA *or* the Margin!
You can see how powerful this is.
So as you can tell by the title, a lot of this is heavily inspired by Chris Cole's paper "The Allegory of the Hawk and the Serpent". You can read it here:
Between it, his interviews and my mediocre options skills at the time my mind was blown. Unfortunately I didnt know how to do the Long Volatility part until after the crash in March but I've since then had nothing but time to scour the internet and learn as much as I could.
The way I interpret this isnt necessarily "what you should have right now", but what abstracted model they were able to backtest that gave them the best performance over the 90 years. Also, a lot of my portfolio I already had before I started trying to build this.
As such my allocations dont match the proportions he gave. Not saying my allocations are better, just showing where they are at this time.
I'm going to describe how I do Long Volatility at the end rather than the beginning since the way *I* do it wont make sense until you see the rest of the portflio.

Physical PMs 22%
I'm not sure wether he intended this to be straight up physical gold or include miners and royalty streaming companies so I will just keep this as physical.
I consider Silver to be a non-expiring call option on gold, so that can live here too. I am actually *very* overweight silver and my strategy is to convert a large portion of it to gold (mostly my bars)
to gold as the ratio tightens up.
If youre into crypto, you can arguably say that has a place in this section.
If an ETF makes sense for part of your portfolio, I suggest the Sprott ones such as PHYS. Sprott is an honest business and they actually have the metal they say they have. If you have enough, you can redeem your shares from the Royal Canadian Mint. The only downside is that they dont have an options chain, so you cant sell covered calls etc. Simple enough I suppose.
One thing to bear in mind, there is a double edged sword with this class of assets. They're out of the system, theyre nobody's business but your own and theres no counter party. That
unfortunately means that you cant lever against it for margin or sell covered calls etc. You can still buy puts though (more on that later)

Commodity Trend (CTA) 10%
Patrick Ceresna gave a good presentation on what this strategy is. Until I watched this video I just thought it meant "buy commodities". A real CTA does this with futures also so aside from the way he showed, there are two other ETFs that are worth looking at.
COM - This is an explicit trend following ETF that follows a LONG/FLAT strategy instead of LONG/SHORT on a pile of commodity futures. So if they get a "sell" signal for oil or soybeans they sell what they have and go to cash.
COMT- Holds an assortment of different month futures in different commodities, as well as a *lot* of various related shares in producers. Its almost a one stop shop commodities portfolio. Pays a respectable dividend in December
If you want to break the "rules" of CTA, and include equities theres a few others that are also worth looking at
KOL- This is a coal ETF. The problems with it are that a lot of the holdings dont have much to do with coal. One of them is a tractor company. A lot of the companies are Chinese so theres a bit of a red flag.
Obviously Thermal Coal, the kind used for heating and powerplants isnt in vogue and wont be moving forward...but coking coal is used for steel manufacturing and that ain't going anywhere. The dividend is huge, pays out in December. A very very small position might be worth the risk.
Uranium- I'm in URA because thats the only way for me to get exposure to Kazatoprom (#1 producer), which is 20% of the holdings. The other 20% is Cameco (#2 producer)and then its random stuff.
Other than that I have shares in Denison which seems like its a good business with some interesting projects underway. I'm still studying the uranium space so I dont really have much to say about it of any value.
RSX- Russia large caps. If you dont want to pick between the myriad of undervalued, high dividend paying commodity companies that Russia has then just grab this. It only pays in December but it has a liquid options chain so you can do Covered Calls in the meantime if you want.
NTR- Nutrien, canadian company that was formed when two others merged. They are now the worlds largest potash producer. Pretty good dividend. They have some financial difficulties and the stocks been in a downtrend forever. I feel its a good candidate to watch or sell some puts on.
I'm trying to come up with a way to play agriculture since this new phase we're going to be entering is likely to cause huge food shortages.

EURN and NAT- I got in fairly early on the Tanker hype before it was even hype as a way to short oil but I got greedy and lost a lot of my gains. I pared down my position and I'm staying for the dividend.
If you get an oil sell signal, this might be a way to play that still.

Fixed Income/Bonds 10%

Now, I am not a bond expert but unless youre doing some wacky spreads with futures or whatever... I dont see much reason to buy government debt any more. If you are, youre basically betting that they take rates negative. Raoul Pal of Real Vision is pretty firm in his conviction that this will happen. I know better than to argue with him but I dont see risk/reward as being of much value.
HOWEVER, I found two interesting ETFs that seem to bring something to this portfolio
IVOL- This is run by Nancy Davis, and is comprised of TIPS bonds which are nominally inflation protected (doubt its real inflation but whatever) overlayed with some OTC options that are designed to pay off big if the Fed loses control of the long end of the yield curve, which is what might happen during a real inflation situation. Pays out a decent yield monthly
TAIL- This is a simpler portfolio of 10yr treasuries with ladder of puts on the SPX. Pays quarterly.

Equities 58% (shared with options/volatility below)
This is where it gets interesting, obviously most of this is in mining shares but before I get to those I found some interesting stuff that I'm intending to build up as I pare down my miners when the time comes to start doing that.
VIRT- I cant remember where I saw this, but people were talking about this as a volatility play. Its not perfect, but look at the chart compared to SPY. Its a HFT/market making operation, the wackier things get the more pennies they can scalp. A 4% dividend isnt shabby either.
FUND- This is an interesting closed end fund run by Whitney George, one of the principals at Sprott. He took it with him when he joined the company. Ive read his reports and interviews and I really like his approach to value and investing. He's kind of like if Warren Buffett was a gold bug. Theres 120 holdings in there, mostly small caps and very diverse...chicken factories, ball bearings all kinds of boring ass shit that nobody knows exists. Whats crucial is that most of it "needs to exist". Between him, his family and other people at Sprott they control 40% or so of the shares, so they definitely have skin in the game. Generous dividend.
ZIG- This is a "deep value" strategy fund, run by Tobias Carlisle. He has a fairly simple valuation formula called the Acquirer's Multiple that when he backtested it, is supposed to perform very well. He did an interview with Chris Cole on real Vision where he discusses how Value and Deep Value havent done well recently, but over the last 100 years have proven to be very viable strategies. If we feel that theres a new cycle brewing, then this strategy may work again moving forward.

I want to pause and point out something here, Chris Cole, Nassim Taleb and the guys at Mutiny Fund spend a lot of effort explaining that building a portfolio is a lot like putting together a good basketall team. They need to work together, and pick up each others slack
A lot of the ETFs I'm listing here are in many ways portfolios in and of themselves and are *actively managed*. I specifically chose them because they follow a methodology that I respect but I can't do myself because I dont have the skill, temperament or access to.
The next one is a hidden gem and ties into this. I'm not sure how much more upside there is in this one but man was I surprised.
SII- Sprott Inc. I *never* see people listing this stock in their PMs portfolios. A newsletter I'm subscribed to described this stock as the safest way to play junior miners. Their industry presence, intellectual capital and connections means that they get *the best* private placement deals in the best opportunities. I cant compete with a staff like theirs and I'm not going to try. I bought this at 2.50, and I liked the dividend. Since then they did a reverse split to get on the NYSE and like the day after the stock soared.
When it comes to mining ETFS I like GOAU and SILJ the best. None of their major holdings are dead weight companies that are only there because of market cap. I dont want Barrick in my portfolio etc.
SGDJ is a neat version of GDXJ.
Aside from that my individual miners/royalty companies are (no particular order)
RIO- Rio2 on the tsx, not rio tinto
Options/Volatility: varies
So this is where we get to the part about options, Volatility and how I do it. I started out in the options space with The Wheel strategy and the Tastytrade approach of selling premium. The spreads and puts I sell, are on shares listed above, in fact some of those I dont hold anymore.
Theres tons of stuff on this in thetagang and options so I wont go into a whole bunch (and you shouldnt be learning the mechanics from me anyway) but theres one thing I want to go over before it gets wild.
If I sell a Cash Secured Put, from a risk management perspective its identical to just buying 100 shares of the underlying security. You are equally "Short Vol" as well, it just that with options
its a little more explicit with the Greeks and everything. But if I use my margin that I was talking about earlier, then I can still collect the premium and the interest doesnt kick in unless Im actually assigned the shares.
But if I sell too many puts on KL or AG, and something happens where the miners get cut down (and lets be real, they all move together) my margin goes down and then I get assigned and account gets blown up
So what I need to do, is balance out the huge Short Vol situation in my portfolio, be net Long Vol and directly hedge my positions. Since the overwhelming majority of my equities are all tied to bullion this is actually a very easy thing to do.


So I set this up so the vast majority of my margin is tied up in these 1-2 or even 1-3 ratio put spreads that *I actually put on for a small credit*, and roll them every once in a while. I run them on SLV, and GDX.
I keep enough room on my margin so I can withstand a 10% drawdown before it sets off the long end of the spreads and then I can ride it out until it turns around and we keep the PM bull market going.
Theres another cool spread I've been using, which is a modified Jade Lizard; if already hold shares, I'll sell a put, sell a covered call, and use some of the premium to buy a longer dated call. Ive been running this on AG mostly.
I have a few more spreads I can show you but Im tired now so it'll have to wait for later.
As I said multiple times, I do intend to trim these miners later but now isnt the time for that IMO. I'm also monitoring this almost full time since I have an injury and have nothing better to do until I heal :p
submitted by ChudBuntsman to pmstocks [link] [comments]

Long Way Back (Part 2)

Part I
After these events I withdrew into myself. I used to spend most of the free time at home alone. Sometimes I spent the whole weekend lying in bed or playing video games.
In a couple of months I started having troubles falling asleep. Often I couldn’t resist the temptation to “dive” and replace the depressing reality with happy moments of distant past. After waking up I used to lie in the bed fighting a pulsing headache till dawn.
Insomnia made me sluggish and apathetic. But still I would retreat into memories every evening like an addict looking for a dose.
∗ ∗ ∗
I am fourteen years old. School is on summer break. Weather is boiling-hot, so my friends and I are hiding from the sun in a park.
We put our pocket money together to buy a large coke and some ice cream. I am laying on the grass in the shadow of a large willow listening to my friend’s jokes and eating lemon ice pop. If there’s a single word to describe my mind at this moment, it should be serenity.
∗ ∗ ∗
I am twelve. My father and I hike in the magnificent Crimean mountains. When we come home, my parents will finally break up, and mom will leave us. But it will be later. In the meantime I have nothing to worry about. Right now the only thing that attracts my attention is the pure beauty of nature.
∗ ∗ ∗
I am ten. I participate in the national math contest and take the second place to everyone’s surprise. When they call me to give a reward, I glance at my school teacher in the audience and see tears in her eyes.
∗ ∗ ∗
I am fifteen.
I sit at the porch of our cabin waiting for my friends. Disco starts in a couple of minutes, and it’s literally common knowledge that a party is the most important thing in the social life of teenagers in summer camp. So it’s only natural that I’m angry with my friend for keeping me waiting.
At long last they come out. I see Max and my heart fills with warmth and sorrow at the same time. Usually, I try to avoid memories of him, but this is a special occasion.
Max wears ripped jeans, Nirvana t-shirt and a cap. His look makes me amused: from an adult perspective he looks kinda funny, but such an image is taken much more seriously when you’re fifteen.
My parents used to send me to summer camp each year when I was at school, but this time is special. During this trip I will fall in love with a girl (even though our childish “relationship” will only hold for a couple of weeks) and kiss her for the first time in my life. After it happens, I’ll be so excited that we’ll be discussing this experience with Max for half the night.
When I think about it, it feels nostalgic, but I dismiss this feeling. How can I be so sentimental, if it hasn’t happened yet?
Our company finally arrives at a basketball court that also serves as a dance floor. Upbeat music is playing loudly, and most of the people have already gathered. Max nudges me and points at the girl I’m to experience an awkward excitement of the first kiss with. I look at the direction he’s pointing to, and freeze, struck dumb.
Cause I see Nika standing at the edge of the court.
When I met her at the university, she looked totally different, but still I recognize her at first sight. She has long hair with a few strands defiantly dyed pink. She wears a sundress (and it’s actually the first time I see her wearing anything other than a baggy hoodie and jeans).
As if on purpose, at the very same moment DJ announces a slow dance and turns on a soft melody. Without thinking about possible consequences, I approach Nika and ask her to dance. There’s a glimpse of surprise in her eyes, but she still accepts my invitation.
I put my hands on her waist. Suddenly, she moves closer to me and places her arms around my neck. We start dancing, and I belatedly introduce myself. She tells me her name too. I try to start a conversation and subconsciously fear that she won’t talk to me as it was the last time we met in future.
But the future is not here yet. There has been no quarrel between us yet. That’s why Nika answers my dumb questions, laughs at my jokes and sounds exactly the same I remember.
The song ends, and our dance does as well. To me this awkward teenage ritual seems to be the most romantic thing in the world at this moment.
I ask Nika to leave the party and sneak to the beach. Max gives me the thumbs up behind her back.
While we walk together, Nika tells me all kinds of things. She tells me about her favorite indie sci-fi movies. Says that she studies programming as a hobby. Then she says that she’ll soon begin preparing for the graduation exams, since she wants to go to a good university. I eagerly listen to her, enjoying every minute I spend with the girl I missed so much.
We reach the sandy bank of the river and sit on the concrete parapet. Nika notes that we mustn’t get close to the water without supervision, but I see cheerful sparkles in her eyes. I joke that if counselors catch us, at least we will serve a sentence together.
We sit silently and watch the river flow for a couple of minutes. At last Nika starts to speak:
“Do you believe in the butterfly effect? The theory that tiny events in the past…”
“...can have huge consequences,“ I finish the sentence. “You do something that you don’t consider to be important, but by chance it happens to affect the future a lot. Like a chain reaction. Yeah, I believe. Probably. Why do you ask?”
“Well, we met randomly just a couple of hours ago. For instance, imagine that I dressed differently today, and you didn’t notice me because of it, or something like that,” she suggests. “And we’d never meet as a result. Or we’d meet much later. In university, for example. And we’d never know that we even went to the same summer camp…” Nika pauses for a moment, and a vague paranoid thought arises in my mind all of a sudden. “You know, I like you a lot,” she unexpectedly finishes the monologue.
It looks like a coincidence, but ever since I got my power, I don’t believe in coincidences. I hesitate for a couple of seconds, but finally say: “I don’t mean to be rude but… What’s the date today?”
Nika seems surprised by this question. After a short silence, she says hesitantly: “The fifteenth of July?”
“Close enough,” I answer. The camp started only yesterday, so it’s virtually impossible to be so wrong. “It’s the seventh. And what’s the last movie you saw in the cinema?”
Nika fades. Her shoulders sag, and after a short pause she asks: “Which year are you from?”“October, 2019” I answer honestly.
“Huh,” she smiles miserably. “Me too. Maybe, that’s the only way we can be in the same past together ‒ if we go to sleep at the same time?”
She pauses again, and I finally decide to ask a question I have in mind for the last couple of minutes:
“Why did we stop talking? Why did you start ignoring me?”
She chuckles and starts to speak:
“Didn’t you get it? It started that evening at Ivan’s birthday party. We started arguing. You were stubborn as usual, so I said some stuff I immediately regretted. I decided to go back and fix it. But when I came back to the past, it appeared that you suddenly changed the subject before I was able to do anything. You must understand, my ability had never failed me before. I thought that events were invariant, unless I changed them myself. So when it happened, I became frightened and woke up,” Nika stops to catch her breath, but I stay silent digesting this information, so she continues: “At first I blamed the butterfly effect. I thought that I changed something myself, so I tried to get back again in order to amend what happened, but for some reason my powers didn’t work on you no matter how much I tried. Trust me, it was scary. I acted on a whim and pushed you away. And I told myself to forget you,” I see tears in her eyes. “I tried to replace you with other people. It didn’t work. On the contrary, I started thinking about you even more. My thoughts returned to the fact that you were beyond my power again and again, and it annoyed me. Also… I missed you a lot”.
I take her hand in mine without thinking. I know that I’ll never be able to change this moment, but it’s worth the risk.
∗ ∗ ∗
Nika tells me that she discovered her abilities when she fell asleep during the lecture. For a long time she thought that it was just a deja vu. I joke that some lecturers made me fall asleep without any time travel involved.
∗ ∗ ∗
She calls it “to wake up from our reality to another”. I call it “diving”. Different names, same meaning.
∗ ∗ ∗
I tell her that I once returned to 2011 to buy bitcoin, but when I “woke up” it appeared that cryptocurrency never became popular in the first place. I tell her that I tried doing it several times and gave up in the end. We discuss chaos theory for some time, and Nika suggests that it’s possible that bitcoin only became expensive by an incredible coincidence that accidentally occurred in our time branch.
∗ ∗ ∗
She says that she tried to make money from betting, but it turned out that results of most games are completely random. We laugh at it and agree that the universe has a sense of humor.
∗ ∗ ∗
Sun sets and it becomes colder. I give Nika my shirt to warm her up a bit.
∗ ∗ ∗
I tell her about the rules of “diving” that I derived. When I regret about “past me” being unable to remember the “dive”, Nika tells me a simple solution that makes me feel stupid. Turns out that she started the diary on the very same day when she discovered her ability to travel through time. Whenever she comes back to the past, she simply puts instructions for herself in the diary.
It reminds me of something. I realize that in despair Max tried to do the exact same thing ‒ that night in the abandoned building he tried to leave a diary.
I ask Nika if she's ever met other time travelers. After a negative response, I tell her the shocking story of my friend’s death. I also mention the creepy childhood memory.
We ask ourselves: how many time travelers are there around us? How many of them do we meet each day without even knowing?
∗ ∗ ∗
Sudden gust of fresh wind rustles reeds with a soft whispering. Nika moves closer to me. I hug her, and my heart starts beating faster.
∗ ∗ ∗
Nika tells me how she once tried to “dive” while already being in the past. I admire her courage ‒ I never attempted such a thing, and to be honest after traveling to the distant childhood I wouldn’t have tried. However, her experience is not really inspiring: she was able to go to the second level only for a second. When she “woke up” in reality, she felt so sick that she had to skip work next day.
∗ ∗ ∗
I hear voices behind our backs. A couple of kids come to the river bank and stop sixty feet behind. The girl giggles and tells the boy that this place seems to be already taken. We quietly wait until they leave.
I turn to Nika, and she kisses me, probably tired of waiting for me to do the next step.
Strictly speaking, that should be my first kiss. That thought makes me laugh.
∗ ∗ ∗
I tell Nika that we must stay together. It’s fate that we both happen to have these supernatural powers. She seriously answers that I must swear to never use my abilities on her. I agree to that.
We hear DJ announcing the last track of the party. He turns on a sweet indie song. Nika says that it’s very romantic, and we kiss till the melody reaches its end.
“Would you like to walk me home?” she asks playfully. Of course, I say yes.
Near the cabin she says that we need to say goodbye for now. We agree that we’ll both wake up next morning (which happens to be seven years later), and if we are actually a perfect match to each other, then we’ll probably wake up together.
After that I see that her eyes close for a moment, and when she regains consciousness, her face looks surprised for a couple of seconds. Then Nika giggles, kisses me goodbye and runs into the cabin. I realize that she “woke up”.
Of course, I’ll join her in the future. Eventually. No, I do not plan on changing anything or breaking my promises. However, after all I’ve been through, I won’t be satisfied by faint new memories of the changed reality in the morning. I don’t want to lose her anymore so I intend to truly live through everything that is destined for us.
I have a long way back to go.
∗ ∗ ∗
When I finally “wake up”, my head bursts with pain. It hurts so much that I cannot make a sound. There are fireworks in my eyes, so I cannot really see my surroundings. An attempt to move leads to an even greater pain and nausea that I hardly hold back. Suddenly, a cool hand touches me. The last thought before I lose consciousness is that it must be Nika.
∗ ∗ ∗
When I wake up again, I feel a bit better. Migraine is still pulsing in my head, but it’s bearable. I can feel sunlight through closed eyelids, so I realize that it’s morning already. It’s time to get up, but I continue to lie with my eyes closed and think about the past years.
∗ ∗ ∗
I recall how we started dating after that night at the camp. We spent the whole summer together walking in parks, cycling around the city and watching movies at her parents’ home.
I recall that in a couple of months we had our first sex. It wasn’t something to brag about: it was actually pretty awkward. Yet it moved our relationship to a whole next level.
I recall how Nika got into an accident after the prom. She broke her ankles in several places, and it left large terrible scars. That’s when she stopped wearing skirts or dresses.
I recall that we enrolled in the same university, but this time we also went to the same program.
I recall that after the first year in university, we got the identical tattoos on our shins. It covered the scars she was ashamed of.
I recall that one year later she discovered that she can time travel. She told me about it at once, and we experimented with her ability a lot together.
I recall that in a couple of years we finally started living together, and a year and a half ago I proposed to her. The wedding took place on June 22, and Max was my best man.
I recall that I woke up the next morning and saw Max sleeping on an armchair in our living room. He was drunk as hell, but most importantly he was alive.
I recall that we went to Spain for our honeymoon. On the last day of this vacation I looked at Nika’s happy face for the last time in the past. Then I finally “woke up”.
∗ ∗ ∗
I hear someone calling my name. I open my eyes to see Nika lying next to me in the bed.
But at that very second when the light hits my eyes, agony comes back. Just before I start screaming, I realize that I can only see with my left eye.
Nika rushes to me. She’s clearly scared. I try to get up, but I can’t. It feels like every bone in my body is broken. Fighting the excruciating pain, I try to tell Nika what happened, but for some reason my words get stuck somewhere between my brain and my mouth. At last, Nika pulls out her phone and calls an ambulance.
∗ ∗ ∗
When they took me to the hospital, I was already feeling a bit better. Doctors examined me for days. They did a bunch of CT scans and gave me several mutually exclusive diagnoses. In the end they agreed that I had an atypical ischemic stroke. At least it explained some part of my symptoms like partial loss of vision and aphasia.
I didn’t insist on specifying the diagnosis. It was crystal clear to me that modern science doesn't have the slightest idea about what happens in the human brain when its synapses try to adjust for several years of contradicting memories.
Speech disorder and loss of coordination passed quickly. In a couple of weeks migraines stopped as well. However, I lost sight in my right eye permanently. And that wasn’t the worst of it.
First of all, when I was finally discharged from the intensive care, Nika and I had a long unpleasant conversation. She cried at me, called me an irresponsible idiot and liar. I had nothing to say to defend myself. I was guilty in every way.
In the end she calmed down and even seemed to forgive me. But when I was discharged from the hospital, I discovered another troubling matter.
I was unable to “dive”.
We spent a lot of time working on it. Nika tried to help me, believing that my skills got rusty because of many years of break. But it was to no avail. I lost my power completely.
It would be difficult to understand me for someone who had never wielded such a power. Imagine that one morning you try to get up from your bed and suddenly realize that you forgot how to walk. You put your feet on the floor, but you fall whenever you try to stand up. That’s exactly how I felt.
I also remembered how a long time ago Uncle Misha said: “When you are fixed, you’ll understand”. Of course, I couldn’t know for sure, but I assumed that each person has some kind of the internal limit of energy. Each time that we traveled back and forth, we spent some of it. I didn’t know whether this energy source used to replenish after coming back or not, but it didn’t matter anymore. My last “dive” exhausted it completely, because I spent too much time in the past. I became fixed.
Nika shared my pain and sincerely sympathized, but it didn’t help. She was a successful software engineer with a perfect life (how could it be not perfect, if she was able to magically fix any problems?). I was disabled and suffering from constant migraines and deep depression. Each day we became more distant, and I was the only one guilty.
There was another unpleasant surprise. Now, when I was fixed, my memory started to work in a funny way. Each time when anybody changed the past, I continued to remember the old version of events instead of a new one.
This strange effect manifested itself for the first time when Nika called me from the office and asked me to look for her keys. I found them and told her so. The next thing I remember, I was sitting at the computer and there were no keys on the table.
It felt rather disturbing, and my first thought was that I have some kind of memory lapses because of the stroke. Actually, the doctor warned me that such things could happen. But when Nika came home from work, she was shocked by this story even more than I. She told me that she actually called me today, because she thought that she lost her keys. When I said that I found them, she “dived” into the morning and simply took them. I could not possibly remember that, because there was no call in the new version of reality.
At this point the gap between us grew even larger, and we started having trust issues.
In addition, I began to notice other changes that clearly proved that there are many time travelers around, and they are constantly editing the past.
One fine morning Nika and I were discussing our plans, and she mentioned that we were planning to go to the Twenty One Pilots show. The problem was that I’d never heard of these guys before. Manic Subsidal’s concert, that we had actually planned to visit, did not exist. In fact, there was no such band at all.
Another day I opened to play Heroes of Might and Magic only to realize that my favorite Forge faction was nowhere to be found. Google told me that it was designed but never added to the game because of the negative fandom reaction.
Several times I really got confused in my memories. Once I got off at the wrong stop when I was visiting my father. I mentioned a childhood friend who never existed to my mother (it scared her a lot). One time I even forgot the stove on (and I was pretty sure that I turned it off) ‒ Nika started scolding me, but then she saw a bewildered look on my face and simply started crying.
At this very moment I suddenly understood that most likely Uncle Misha wasn’t really schizophrenic.
∗ ∗ ∗
The most difficult thing is to see pity and sympathy surrounding me. They think that I suffered a terrible trauma and now I have difficulties distinguishing reality from fantasy. Each time I want to scream that it’s them who do not see the real world. It’s their lives that are getting overwritten every day by a small group of people who have real power.
It feels like a personal hell, designed specifically for me. Only I know what actually happens, but I cannot explain it to anyone.
Each night I go to sleep thinking that I want to wake up from this reality.
But I can’t.
submitted by hokmund to nosleep [link] [comments]

Review and Prospect of Crypto Economy-Development and Evolution of Consensus Mechanism (2)

Review and Prospect of Crypto Economy-Development and Evolution of Consensus Mechanism (2)
The consensus mechanism is one of the important elements of the blockchain and the core rule of the normal operation of the distributed ledger. It is mainly used to solve the trust problem between people and determine who is responsible for generating new blocks and maintaining the effective unification of the system in the blockchain system. Thus, it has become an everlasting research hot topic in blockchain.
This article starts with the concept and role of the consensus mechanism. First, it enables the reader to have a preliminary understanding of the consensus mechanism as a whole; then starting with the two armies and the Byzantine general problem, the evolution of the consensus mechanism is introduced in the order of the time when the consensus mechanism is proposed; Then, it briefly introduces the current mainstream consensus mechanism from three aspects of concept, working principle and representative project, and compares the advantages and disadvantages of the mainstream consensus mechanism; finally, it gives suggestions on how to choose a consensus mechanism for blockchain projects and pointed out the possibility of the future development of the consensus mechanism.
First, concept and function of the consensus mechanism
1.1 Concept: The core rules for the normal operation of distributed ledgers
1.2 Role: Solve the trust problem and decide the generation and maintenance of new blocks
1.2.1 Used to solve the trust problem between people
1.2.2 Used to decide who is responsible for generating new blocks and maintaining effective unity in the blockchain system
1.3 Mainstream model of consensus algorithm
Second, the origin of the consensus mechanism
2.1 The two armies and the Byzantine generals
2.1.1 The two armies problem
2.1.2 The Byzantine generals problem
2.2 Development history of consensus mechanism
2.2.1 Classification of consensus mechanism
2.2.2 Development frontier of consensus mechanism
Third, Common Consensus System
Fourth, Selection of consensus mechanism and summary of current situation
4.1 How to choose a consensus mechanism that suits you
4.1.1 Determine whether the final result is important
4.1.2 Determine how fast the application process needs to be
4.1.2 Determining the degree to which the application requires for decentralization
4.1.3 Determine whether the system can be terminated
4.1.4 Select a suitable consensus algorithm after weighing the advantages and disadvantages
4.2 Future development of consensus mechanism
Last lecture review: Chapter 1 Concept and Function of Consensus Mechanism plus Chapter 2 Origin of Consensus Mechanism
Chapter 3 Common Consensus Mechanisms (Part 1)
Figure 6 Summary of relatively mainstream consensus mechanisms
Source: Hasib Anwar, "Consensus Algorithms: The Root Of The Blockchain Technology"
The picture above shows 14 relatively mainstream consensus mechanisms summarized by a geek Hasib Anwar, including PoW (Proof of Work), PoS (Proof of Stake), DPoS (Delegated Proof of Stake), LPoS (Lease Proof of Stake), PoET ( Proof of Elapsed Time), PBFT (Practical Byzantine Fault Tolerance), SBFT (Simple Byzantine Fault Tolerance), DBFT (Delegated Byzantine Fault Tolerance), DAG (Directed Acyclic Graph), Proof-of-Activity (Proof of Activity), Proof-of- Importance (Proof of Importance), Proof-of-Capacity (Proof of Capacity), Proof-of-Burn ( Proof of Burn), Proof-of-Weight (Proof of Weight).
Next, we will mainly introduce and analyze the top ten consensus mechanisms of the current blockchain.
Work proof mechanism. That is, the proof of work means that it takes a certain amount of computer time to confirm the work.
Figure 7 PoW work proof principle
The PoW represented by Bitcoin uses the SHA-256 algorithm function, which is a 256-bit hash algorithm in the password hash function family:
Proof of work output = SHA256 (SHA256 (block header));
if (output of proof of work if (output of proof of work >= target value), change the random number, recursive i logic, continue to compare with the target value.
New difficulty value = old difficulty value* (time spent by last 2016 blocks /20160 minutes)
Target value = maximum target value / difficulty value
The maximum target value is a fixed number. If the last 2016 blocks took less than 20160 minutes, then this coefficient will be small, and the target value will be adjusted bigger, if not, the target value will be adjusted smaller. Bitcoin mining difficulty and block generation speed will be inversely proportional to the appropriate adjustment of block generation speed.
-Representative applications: BTC, etc.
Proof of stake. That is, a mechanism for reaching consensus based on the holding currency. The longer the currency is held, the greater the probability of getting a reward.
PoS implementation algorithm formula: hash(block_header) = Coin age calculation formula: coinage = number of coins * remaining usage time of coins
Among them, coinage means coin age, which means that the older the coin age, the easier it is to get answers. The calculation of the coin age is obtained by multiplying the coins owned by the miner by the remaining usage time of each coin, which also means that the more coins you have, the easier it is to get answers. In this way, pos solves the problem of wasting resources in pow, and miners cannot own 51% coins from the entire network, so it also solves the problem of 51% attacks.
-Representative applications: ETH, etc.
Delegated proof of stake. That is, currency holding investors select super nodes by voting to operate the entire network , similar to the people's congress system.
The DPOS algorithm is divided into two parts. Elect a group of block producers and schedule production.
Election: Only permanent nodes with the right to be elected can be elected, and ultimately only the top N witnesses can be elected. These N individuals must obtain more than 50% of the votes to be successfully elected. In addition, this list will be re-elected at regular intervals.
Scheduled production: Under normal circumstances, block producers take turns to generate a block every 3 seconds. Assuming that no producer misses his order, then the chain they produce is bound to be the longest chain. When a witness produces a block, a block needs to be generated every 2s. If the specified time is exceeded, the current witness will lose the right to produce and the right will be transferred to the next witness. Then the witness is not only unpaid, but also may lose his identity.
-Representative applications: EOS, etc.
Delayed proof of work. A new-generation consensus mechanism based on PoB and DPoS. Miners use their own computing power, through the hash algorithm, and finally prove their work, get the corresponding wood, wood is not tradable. After the wood has accumulated to a certain amount, you can go to the burning site to burn the wood. This can achieve a balance between computing power and mining rights.
In the DPoW-based blockchain, miners are no longer rewarded tokens, but "wood" that can be burned, burning wood. Miners use their own computing power, through the hash algorithm, and finally prove their work, get the corresponding wood, wood is not tradable. After the wood has accumulated to a certain amount, you can go to the burning site to burn the wood. Through a set of algorithms, people who burn more wood or BP or a group of BP can obtain the right to generate blocks in the next event segment, and get rewards (tokens) after successful block generation. Since more than one person may burn wood in a time period, the probability of producing blocks in the next time period is determined by the amount of wood burned by oneself. The more it is burned, the higher the probability of obtaining block rights in the next period.
Two node types: notary node and normal node.
The 64 notary nodes are elected by the stakeholders of the dPoW blockchain, and the notarized confirmed blocks can be added from the dPoW blockchain to the attached PoW blockchain. Once a block is added, the hash value of the block will be added to the Bitcoin transaction signed by 33 notary nodes, and a hash will be created to the dPow block record of the Bitcoin blockchain. This record has been notarized by most notary nodes in the network. In order to avoid wars on mining between notary nodes, and thereby reduce the efficiency of the network, Komodo designed a mining method that uses a polling mechanism. This method has two operating modes. In the "No Notary" (No Notary) mode, all network nodes can participate in mining, which is similar to the traditional PoW consensus mechanism. In the "Notaries Active" mode, network notaries use a significantly reduced network difficulty rate to mine. In the "Notary Public Activation" mode, each notary public is allowed to mine a block with its current difficulty, while other notary public nodes must use 10 times the difficulty of mining, and all normal nodes use 100 times the difficulty of the notary public node.
Figure 8 DPoW operation process without a notary node
-Representative applications: CelesOS, Komodo, etc.
CelesOS Research Institute丨DPoW consensus mechanism-combustible mining and voting
Practical Byzantine fault tolerance algorithm. That is, the complexity of the algorithm is reduced from exponential to polynomial level, making the Byzantine fault-tolerant algorithm feasible in practical system applications.
Figure 9 PBFT algorithm principle
First, the client sends a request to the master node to call the service operation, and then the master node broadcasts other copies of the request. All copies execute the request and send the result back to the client. The client needs to wait for f+1 different replica nodes to return the same result as the final result of the entire operation.
Two qualifications: 1. All nodes must be deterministic. That is to say, the results of the operation must be the same under the same conditions and parameters. 2. All nodes must start from the same status. Under these two limited qualifications, even if there are failed replica nodes, the PBFT algorithm agrees on the total order of execution of all non-failed replica nodes, thereby ensuring security.
-Representative applications: Tendermint Consensus, etc.
Next Lecture: Chapter 3 Common Consensus Mechanisms (Part 2) + Chapter 4 Consensus Mechanism Selection and Status Summary
As the first DPOW financial blockchain operating system, CelesOS adopts consensus mechanism 3.0 to break through the "impossible triangle", which can provide high TPS while also allowing for decentralization. Committed to creating a financial blockchain operating system that embraces supervision, providing services for financial institutions and the development of applications on the supervision chain, and formulating a role and consensus ecological supervision layer agreement for supervision.
The CelesOS team is dedicated to building a bridge between blockchain and regulatory agencies/financial industry. We believe that only blockchain technology that cooperates with regulators will have a real future. We believe in and contribute to achieving this goal.

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Continuous Proof of Bitcoin Burn: trust minimized sidechains and bitcoin-pegs w/o oracles/federations today

Original design presented for discussion and criticism
originally posted here:
TLDR: Proposing the following that's possible today to use for any existing or new altcoins:


This is not an altcoin thread. I'm not making anything. The design discussed options for existing altcoins and new ways to built on top of Bitcoin inheriting some of its security guarantees. 2 parts: First, the design allows any altcoins to switch to securing themselves via Bitcoin instead of their own PoW or PoS with significant benefits to both altcoins and Bitcoin (and environment lol). Second, I explain how to create Bitcoin-pegged assets to turn altcoins into a Bitcoin sidechain equivalent. Let me know if this is of interest or if it exists, feel free to use or do anything with this, hopefully I can help.


Solution to first few points:

PoW altcoin switching to CPoBB would trade:

PoS altcoin switching to CPoBB would trade:

We already have a permissionless, compact, public, high-cost-backed finality base layer to build on top - Bitcoin! It will handle sorting, data availability, finality, and has something of value to use instead of capital or energy that's outside the sidechain - the Bitcoin coins. The sunk costs of PoW can be simulated by burning Bitcoin, similar to concept known as Proof of Burn where Bitcoin are sent to unspendable address. Unlike ICO's, no contributors can take out the Bitcoins and get rewards for free. Unlike PoS, entry into supply lies outside the alt-chain and thus doesn't depend on permission of alt-chain stake-coin holders. It's hard to find a more bandwidth or state size protective blockchain to use other than Bitcoin as well so altcoins can be Bitcoin-aware at little marginal difficulty - 10 years of history fully validates in under a day.

What are typical issues with Proof of Burn?


This should be required for any design for it to stay permissionless. Optional is constant fixed emission rate for altcoins not trying to be money if goal is to maximize accessibility. Since it's not depending on brand new PoW for security, they don't have to depend on massive early rewards giving disproportionate fraction of supply at earliest stage either. If 10 coins are created every block, after n blocks, at rate of 10 coins per block, % emission per block is = (100/n)%, an always decreasing number. Sidechain coin doesn't need to be scarce money, and could maximize distribution of control by encouraging further distribution. If no burners exist in a block, altcoin block reward is simply added to next block reward making emission predictable.
Sidechain block content should be committed in burn transaction via a root of the merkle tree of its transactions. Sidechain state will depend on Bitcoin for finality and block time between commitment broadcasts. However, the throughput can be of any size per block, unlimited number of such sidechains can exist with their own rules and validation costs are handled only by nodes that choose to be aware of a specific sidechain by running its consensus compatible software.
Important design decision is how can protocol determine the "true" side-block and how to distribute incentives. Simplest solution is to always :
  1. Agree on the valid sidechain block matching the merkle root commitment for the largest amount of Bitcoin burnt, earliest inclusion in the bitcoin block as the tie breaker
  2. Distribute block reward during the next side-block proportional to current amounts burnt
  3. Bitcoin fee market serves as deterrent for spam submissions of blocks to validate
sidechain block reward is set always at 10 altcoins per block Bitcoin block contains the following content embedded and part of its transactions: tx11: burns 0.01 BTC & OP_RETURN tx56: burns 0.05 BTC & OP_RETURN ... <...root of valid sidechain block version 1> ... tx78: burns 1 BTC & OP_RETURN ... <...root of valid sidechain block version 2> ... tx124: burns 0.2 BTC & OP_RETURN ... <...root of INVALID sidechain block version 3> ...
Validity is deterministic by rules in client side node software (e.g. signature validation) so all nodes can independently see version 3 is invalid and thus burner of tx124 gets no reward allocated. The largest valid burn is from tx78 so version 2 is used for the blockchain in sidechain. The total valid burn is 1.06 BTC, so 10 altcoins to be distributed in the next block are 0.094, 0.472, 9.434 to owners of first 3 transactions, respectively.
Censorship attack would require continuous costs in Bitcoin on the attacker and can be waited out. Censorship would also be limited to on-sidechain specific transactions as emission distribution to others CPoB contributors wouldn't be affected as blocks without matching coin distributions on sidechain wouldn't be valid. Additionally, sidechains can allow a limited number of sidechain transactions to happen via embedding transaction data inside Bitcoin transactions (e.g. OP_RETURN) as a way to use Bitcoin for data availability layer in case sidechain transactions are being censored on their network. Since all sidechain nodes are Bitcoin aware, it would be trivial to include.
Sidechain blocks cannot be reverted without reverting Bitcoin blocks or hard forking the protocol used to derive sidechain state. If protocol is forked, the value of sidechain coins on each fork of sidechain state becomes important but Proof of Burn natively guarantees trust minimized and permissionless distribution of the coins, something inferior methods like obscure early distributions, trusted pre-mines, and trusted ICO's cannot do.
More bitcoins being burnt is parallel to more hash rate entering PoW, with each miner or burner getting smaller amount of altcoins on average making it unprofitable to burn or mine and forcing some to exit. At equilibrium costs of equipment and electricity approaches value gained from selling coins just as at equilibrium costs of burnt coins approaches value of altcoins rewarded. In both cases it incentivizes further distribution to markets to cover the costs making burners and miners dependent on users via markets. In both cases it's also possible to mine without permission and mine at a loss temporarily to gain some altcoins without permission if you want to.
Altcoins benefit by inheriting many of bitcoin security guarantees, bitcoin parties have to do nothing if they don't want to, but will see their coins grow more scarce through burning. The contributions to the fee market will contribute to higher Bitcoin miner rewards even after block reward is gone.

Sidechain Bitcoin-pegs:

What is the ideal goal of the sidechains? Ideally to have a token that has the bi-directionally pegged value to Bitcoin and tradeable ~1:1 for Bitcoin that gives Bitcoin users an option of a different rule set without compromising the base chain nor forcing base chain participants to do anything different.
Issues with value pegs:
Let's get rid of the idea of needing Bitcoin collateral to back pegged coins 1:1 as that's never secure, independent, or scalable at same security level. As drive-chain design suggested the peg doesn't have to be fast, can take months, just needs to exist so other methods can be used to speed it up like atomic swaps by volunteers taking on the risk for a fee.
In continuous proof of burn we have another source of Bitcoins, the burnt Bitcoins. Sidechain protocols can require some minor percentage (e.g. 20%) of burner tx value coins via another output to go to reimburse those withdrawing side-Bitcoins to Bitcoin chain until they are filled. If withdrawal queue is empty that % is burnt instead. Selection of who receives reimbursement is deterministic per burner. Percentage must be kept small as it's assumed it's possible to get up to that much discount on altcoin emissions.
Let's use a really simple example case where each burner pays 20% of burner tx amount to cover withdrawal in exact order requested with no attempts at other matching, capped at half amount requested per payout. Example:
withdrawal queue: request1: 0.2 sBTC request2: 1.0 sBTC request3: 0.5 sBTC
same block burners: tx burns 0.8 BTC, 0.1 BTC is sent to request1, 0.1 BTC is sent to request2 tx burns 0.4 BTC, 0.1 BTC is sent to request1 tx burns 0.08 BTC, 0.02 BTC is sent to request 1 tx burns 1.2 BTC, 0.1 BTC is sent to request1, 0.2 BTC is sent to request2
withdrawal queue: request1: filled with 0.32 BTC instead of 0.2 sBTC, removed from queue request2: partially-filled with 0.3 BTC out of 1.0 sBTC, 0.7 BTC remaining for next queue request3: still 0.5 sBTC
Withdrawal requests can either take long time to get to filled due to cap per burn or get overfilled as seen in "request1" example, hard to predict. Overfilling is not a big deal since we're not dealing with a finite source. The risk a user that chooses to use the sidechain pegged coin takes on is based on the rate at which they can expect to get paid based on value of altcoin emission that generally matches Bitcoin burn rate. If sidechain loses interest and nobody is burning enough bitcoin, the funds might be lost so the scale of risk has to be measured. If Bitcoins burnt per day is 0.5 BTC total and you hope to deposit or withdraw 5000 BTC, it might take a long time or never happen to withdraw it. But for amounts comparable or under 0.5 BTC/day average burnt with 5 side-BTC on sidechain outstanding total the risks are more reasonable.
Deposits onto the sidechain are far easier - by burning Bitcoin in a separate known unspendable deposit address for that sidechain and sidechain protocol issuing matching amount of side-Bitcoin. Withdrawn bitcoins are treated as burnt bitcoins for sake of dividing block rewards as long as they followed the deterministic rules for their burn to count as valid and percentage used for withdrawals is kept small to avoid approaching free altcoin emissions by paying for your own withdrawals and ensuring significant unforgeable losses.
Ideally more matching is used so large withdrawals don't completely block everyone else and small withdrawals don't completely block large withdrawals. Better methods should deterministically randomize assigned withdrawals via previous Bitcoin block hash, prioritized by request time (earliest arrivals should get paid earlier), and amount of peg outstanding vs burn amount (smaller burns should prioritize smaller outstanding balances). Fee market on bitcoin discourages doing withdrawals of too small amounts and encourages batching by burners.
The second method is less reliable but already known that uses over-collateralized loans that create a oracle-pegged token that can be pegged to the bitcoin value. It was already used by its inventors in 2014 on bitshares (e.g. bitCNY, bitUSD, bitBTC) and similarly by MakerDAO in 2018. The upside is a trust minimized distribution of CPoB coins can be used to distribute trust over selection of price feed oracles far better than pre-mined single trusted party based distributions used in MakerDAO (100% pre-mined) and to a bit lesser degree on bitshares (~50% mined, ~50% premined before dpos). The downside is 2 fold: first the supply of BTC pegged coin would depend on people opening an equivalent of a leveraged long position on the altcoin/BTC pair, which is hard to convince people to do as seen by very poor liquidity of bitBTC in the past. Second downside is oracles can still collude to mess with price feeds, and while their influence might be limited via capped price changes per unit time and might compromise their continuous revenue stream from fees, the leverage benefits might outweight the losses. The use of continous proof of burn to peg withdrawals is superior method as it is simply a minor byproduct of "mining" for altcoins and doesn't depend on traders positions. At the moment I'm not aware of any market-pegged coins on trust minimized platforms or implemented in trust minimized way (e.g. premined mkr on premined eth = 2 sets of trusted third parties each of which with full control over the design).

Brief issues with current altchains options:

  1. PoW: New PoW altcoins suffer high risk of attacks. Additional PoW chains require high energy and capital costs to create permissionless entry and trust minimized miners that are forever dependent on markets to hold them accountable. Using same algorithm or equipment as another chain or merge-mining puts you at a disadvantage by allowing some miners to attack and still cover sunk costs on another chain. Using a different algorithm/equipment requires building up the value of sunk costs to protect against attacks with significant energy and capital costs. Drive-chains also require miners to allow it by having to be sidechain aware and thus incur additional costs on them and validating nodes if the sidechain rewards are of value and importance.
  2. PoS: PoS is permissioned (requires permission from internal party to use network or contribute to consensus on permitted scale), allows perpetual control without accountability to others, and incentivizes centralization of control over time. Without continuous source of sunk costs there's no reason to give up control. By having consensus entirely dependent on internal state network, unlike PoW but like private databases, cannot guarantee independent permissionless entry and thus cannot claim trust minimization. Has no built in distribution methods so depends on safe start (snapshot of trust minimized distributions or PoW period) followed by losing that on switch to PoS or starting off dependent on a single trusted party such as case in all significant pre-mines and ICO's.
  3. Proof of Capacity: PoC is just shifting costs further to capital over PoW to achieve same guarantees.
  4. PoW/PoS: Still require additional PoW chain creation. Strong dependence on PoS can render PoW irrelevant and thus inherit the worst properties of both protocols.
  5. Tokens inherit all trust dependencies of parent blockchain and thus depend on the above.
  6. Embedded consensus (counterparty, veriblock?, omni): Lacks mechanism for distribution, requires all tx data to be inside scarce Bitcoin block space so high cost to users instead of compensated miners. If you want to build a very expressive scripting language, might very hard & expensive to fit into Bitcoin tx vs CPoBB external content of unlimited size in a committed hash. Same as CPoBB is Bitcoin-aware so can respond to Bitcoin being sent but without source of Bitcoins like burning no way to do any trust minimized Bitcoin-pegs it can control fully.

Few extra notes from my talks with people:

Main questions to you:

open to working on this further with others
submitted by awasi868 to CryptoTechnology [link] [comments]

XLM can reach $0.10 soon – here's why

XLM can reach $0.10 soon – here's why
Stellar is firmly occupying the 13th spot on the list of the cryptocurrencies with the largest market cap. Last week, we witnessed yet another proof of lumens’ potential: as all the coins dropped on June 02, it was XLM to recover faster than others.
There was a veritable crypto massacre on June 2, when the price of Bitcoin fell by 8% in just five minutes. As usual, other coins followed, with Stellar also losing 8%:
The Bitcoin sell-off was predictable. As soon as BTC makes a move beyond the psychologically important $10,000 mark, whales start selling. Plus, we feel that there are still many miners who have been stashing their mining proceeds for the past few months, waiting for a rally. They decided to hold on to their coins just after the halving, when the expected price explosion didn’t happen.
In fact, data suggests that over 60% of all Bitcoins in active circulation haven’t moved for several months. This is a major indicator of a HODLing sentiment in the market. But as soon, as there’s a bullish move, HODLers jump on the opportunity and sell.
As we’ve said, XLM dropped 8% from $0.083519 to $0.076917. That was a major disappointment to many traders and investors, as Stellar had been on a roll for the whole preceding week since May 26. During that period, it gained an amazing 29%, going from $0.06459 to $0.08352. There were all the reasons to expect a move above $0.10 — a very important mark for XLM.
However, after the ‘massacre’ it was finally Stellar’s time to shine. If you look at the chart for the past month, you can see that the drop was just the deepest among the many recent corrections on the way to a local peak of $0.085514 on June 4:
This marked an overall rise by 32% in just 10 days — an amazing result for a top-20 coin.
What about the slight downward movement that came after? It represents another 7% slump, but from a much higher peak. In the opinion of the XLMwallet analysts, this is nothing more than a regular correction before a new bullish stretch.
The key resistance level to break through will be $0.088. If Stellar manages to overcome it, there’s hardly any obstacles on the way to $0.10.
On the fundamentals side of things, there isn’t much to report: the Stellar Foundation has kept quiet in the past couple of weeks. Therefore, we can expect the price of XLM to largely follow that of Bitcoin. Here, there are more reasons to expect further growth, as BTC miners are quickly returning to the network. The average block time is now at its lowest since 2014: a bit over 8.5 minutes. Of course, mining difficulty will be soon adjusted upward, but generally such ‘difficulty runs’ are a very bullish sign.
Bloomberg updated its BTC price forecast to $20,000 by the end of 2020. A doubling of the BTC price can produce a rise of at least 80% in the price of XLM, taking it all the way to $0.18 or even higher. Therefore, our advice to everyone who is holding lumens in their XLMwallet remains the same: hold.
Don’t get us wrong: we love it when you use our fast, light-weight wallet to send XLM to your friends or pay for goods and services online. Stellar is indeed one of the best cryptocurrencies for payments. But right now the wisest thing is to HODL. If you need to pay in crypto, rather pay in stablecoins.
Do you agree with our analysis? Write your own XLM price forecast in the comments! And if you don’t have an XLMwallet yet, hop over to and activate one right now — it takes only 10 seconds!
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I am stepping down as a moderator of r/btc and exiting the bitcoin community and entering the Ethereum community.

I am stepping down as a moderator of btc and exiting the bitcoin community. Thank you all for fighting until the end. I know I am going to get a lot of hate from pretty much everyone for this post, but I felt the need to post it anyway.

Why Give Up?

I think bitcoin is past the point of no return. There are a number of different routes that bitcoin could take this year, and as far as I can see, they all end up at the same destination; failure. I know I am going to get a lot of flack for this post, and I understand that. I have witnessed bitcoin being announced “dead” many many times throughout its history and I absolutely could be wrong, but almost every one of their predictions were based on a lack of understanding of bitcoin. I don’t feel my prediction is has a lack of understanding. If I am wrong, then I feel it will be through sheer luck that bitcoin survives. I was a bitcoin early adopter in 2011 and have invested far more time into bitcoin than is reasonable. I truly hope bitcoin does survive, but what I think will happen is not predicated on what I want to happen.

How might bitcoin fall?

The Past

I am not going to go through everything that has lead us up to this point. Many of your are well aware of what has brought us here. Bitcoin up until the beginning of 2014 was an unparalleled success. For those of you who weren’t around at the time, there was a huge amount of excitement in the community at all times. It felt like every month there was some announcement that had a positive impact on bitcoin. A new major company offering bitcoin payments, a bitcoin company offering a new service, a new piece of software being added to clients to make them more useful. Bitcoin was making continual progress and the community was unified. Compare the situation back then to day. We have now had 2 years of stagnation, and in many cases degradation of the network.

The Present

The network is now slow and expensive (and getting slower and more expensive), companies have been leaving bitcoin at an exponential rate. No new major companies have adopted bitcoin and there are no signs of this changing in the future. The community is irreparably divided and is at war with itself. Development has stalled.
Where bitcoin has stalled, other cryptocurrencies have been making enormous ground. Bitcoin does not exist in a vacuum. It has competition. Other cryptocurrencies already offer significantly more advance features than bitcoin. The only thing bitcoin has left over other cryptocurrencies is it’s network effect. The inertia of network effect is truly enormous. Bitcoin has been coasting on it for 2 years now. Technology develops rapidly though, and many people are always looking for the next big thing. Investors want to make money and developers want to work on the most advance and growing technology. There has been very little investment into new bitcoin specific companies over the past 2 years. The only new bitcoin company I know of that has received significant investment in the past two years is Blockstream. There has been a very large amount of investment into blockchain companies in general though. The money is there, it’s just not going into bitcoin.
Ethereum has now reached close to 1/3 of bitcoin’s market cap and there is no sign that it is going to let up any time soon. The ethereum community is a breath of fresh air compared to the current bitcoin community and it feels very nostalgic there. It feels very much like the bitcoin community did 3-4 years ago. They have showed that they are not afraid of using hard forks to upgrade the protocol. They have a leader who is intelligent, pragmatic and good at communicating and IMO who is likely to get the network through the early volatile years. The community showed that they value pragmatism and reality over ideology when they stopped a theft of a large percentage of the currency supply and did so without having any adverse affects on anyone other than the thief. They also achieved this while under attack from bitcoin. They have been working with major organisations and companies to promote and forward the use of the network and they listen to the users of the network to find out what problems they have and which features they want, and then work towards satisfying the needs of their users. The developers of the network have known large holdings of the currency, which means conflicts of interest are less likely to arise and protocol development can directly correlate increased returns for the developer’s investment.

The Future

There are a number of possibilities, but I believe all end with very similar outcomes.

Scenario 1 - BU/EC gains 75% of the network hash rate

If BU gains 75% of the network hash rate, a hard fork will become likely (although not certain). Core and their supporters will start to try and burn down the network. All communication channels will overflow with FUD (some real, some fake). Core supporters with large bitcoin holdings will start dumping them on the market in ways that will cause the most damage to price. Core will start recommending at the very minimum a difficulty readjustment and quite likely also a POW change. Price will fall extremely far as speculators adjust their risk exposure and wait out the storm, traders will short the market to make as much money as possible during the fall, and core supporters try to get the BTC price to go as low as possible on the BU/EC side of the fork and BU/EC supporters try to get the price to BCC price to go as low as possible. Whatever the price is before the fork is certain, I think it is likely to reach 50% of that between the time a fork becomes certain and when the fork actually happens. After the fork happens the price could go down to literally any level. While this is happening, the Ethereum market cap is going to overtake bitcoin even if the Ethereum price does not increase (which it will). Bitcoin will not survive this. The moment Ethereum overtakes bitcoin as the biggest cryptocurrency, everyone will find out. It will be posted in articles in every technology news website on the internet. Once the casual bitcoin holders/users find out (hint most do not even pay attention to what is going on in bitcoin) they will quickly panic and either sell to fiat, or sell into Ethereum to speculate. Mining will almost instantly become unprofitable at that point. Monumentally unprofitable in fact. The payout of 12.5 per block will not even slightly cover the cost of electricity and because miners have no direct control over the price of bitcoin they will be absolutely powerless to do anything other than mine at a loss for a very long period of time. If bitcoin price drops to $100, which IMO is very conservative, then it is likely that 90% of the miners will have to turn their hardware off. This means that the difficulty adjustment periods will increase by a factor of 10 to 20 weeks. These miners that are left will need to mine at a huge loss for up to 20 weeks, or hope that somehow the price recovers. I don’t think even the biggest miners could survive that. Further difficulty reset hard forks will be proposed and it will be chaos.
While all of this is happening, Ethereum is likely to be running fine and price will likely be rising significantly as money from bitcoin pours into it.

Scenario 2 - BU/EC never gains 75% of the network hash rate

In this scenario there will be absolutely stalemate. Core will not be able to implement Segwit and therefore will not be able to change bitcoin into a settlement network, but also the transaction throughput will not be increased through larger blocks. The debate will have become so vitriolic that no further progress can be made within bitcoin. Bitcoin simply will not scale on OR off-chain. In this scenario the end is not so violent like in scenario 1 but then end result is the same. Ethereum (and other cryptocurrencies in general) will continue to gain market share throughout the year as Bitcoin remains stuck in stalemate. The bitcoin price continues decreasing and the Ethereum price keeps on increasing until Ethereum overtakes bitcoin. Once the flip happens, it will accelerate significantly as people realise what is happening. The end result is the same as the later part of scenario 1.

Scenario 3 - BU/EC lose most/all of the network hash rate

In this scenario Core manages to get Segwit accepted by the network. Most people in btc simply leave bitcoin for good. Fees will remain high and transaction throughput low. Core will not increase the block size limit until after LN has been proven to work and users have been forced/coerced into using it. LN is not anywhere near ready for production and it is likely to take at least 2 more years until it is released and working and another year or two until it is fully implemented into wallets, and then another year until businesses are able to understand and use it in their backend. I.e. in an ideal world where everything works as intended in this theoretical system it will take 4-5 years until bitcoin has similar properties to what it had 2 years ago. This obviously ignores the fact that there has been no analysis on whether this would even work on an economic level, let alone a technological level.
As transaction fees rise users and business will be pushed into using other cryptocurrencies and fiat and at some point bitcoin’s network effect will be overcome by Ethereum’s. This scenario is essentially the same as scenario 3, but there maybe some initial price pump when Segwit activates and people enjoy and end to the debate. This will likely be short lived though.

What is most likely to happen (IMO)

If BU/EC is to continue to gain further market share of the hash rate and reach the 75% requirement that many parties have suggested. It is likely to take at least a couple more months of deliberations. For this to happen, a number of large pools will need to switch over. Bitfury has stated that they will not support BU and are mining Segwit and have even started mining UASF blocks. HaoBTC is still sticking to the HK agreement (which literally no one else is) and will not be running anything other than Core. This means it is really down to F2Pool and some of the smaller Pools. F2Pool has stated that it will stop signalling for classic and there is no indication that it will start signalling for anything other than Core (not segwit), and has stated that he thinks BU is dead.
This suggests that the most likely scenario is scenario 2. BU/EC will not activate, but nor will Segwit. There are some things that may or may not happen in this scenario. For example it seems that Core are willing to do a UASF to push Segwit through under the pretence that any of the miners that are not mining Segwit are illegitimate as they are against the “consensus”. This will force the miners into making some kind of decision either way. Many are likely to side with Core but I think a significant portion will side with BU initially. A number of different things could happen in this scenario depending on the ratio of hash power on each side of the split. If the split is mostly equal, I expect that two coins will survive for some amount of time. What happens with bitcoin from that point I have no idea. If BU/EC gains the most hash power then the debate will rage on as the BU/EC will refuse to attack the minority chain out of moral reasons. What happens with bitcoin from that point I have no idea. If Core gains the majority share then the BU minority chain will be attacked by some of the majority miners. Core and their supporters do not have any moral objections against this kind of attack. The minority BU miners will then switch back to Core and it will likely play out like in scenario 3.

So this is BU’s fault for forcing a hard fork?

No, this is Core’s fault by making a hard fork dangerous by telling everyone a hard fork is dangerous for the past two years and blocking every conceivable compromise. They have petrified the bitcoin community and convinced them that any kind of hard fork for any reason that does not come from them is dangerous. They have done this to hold onto the power they should not even have in the first place. They have become the self appointed kings of bitcoin. They have achieved this by threatening to burn down the network instead of making a compromise, and by attacking anyone who threatens to take this power away from them. Unfortunately, when Gavin stepped down, he handed to keys to the bitcoin house to the wolves and once they are inside, it seems it is not possible to get them out again. The only way to make them totally irrelevant is to exit and let them be kings of nothing.

Why did you even become a mod in the first place?

I have known bitcoin was on a negative trajectory for quite some time but I felt that one last push to save it was worth my effort. I wanted to help btc be the best bitcoin subreddit to overcome some of the damage that bitcoin has done to the community. IMO btc is the best bitcoin subreddit, but it is far from perfect. I feel very strongly that the moderation of btc is a microcosm of the situation in the bitcoin community in general. I feel there is far too much weight put on idealogical decision making rather pragmatism and realism. The moderation policies of btc are ‘hands-off’ to a point I think is actually detrimental to the sub and to bitcoin. The issue is that, trolls overwhelm the sub and cause constant controversy. They act like a fire under the community and purposely rile everyone up. There is a reason for this. bitcoin was controlled mostly through censorship. Censorship alone was enough to create an echo chamber. They do not have control of the btc moderation team (well actually they managed to get two mods on here who have since left/been removed) so they must turn it into an echo-chamber by other means. They have achieved this by making sure every single post has comments from trolls that try to rile up the community. This makes the btc community have more tunnel vision as they/we try to insulate ourselves from the trolls. The problem is that it means that the community becomes highly idealogical and focused on only one goal.
IMO it is a failure of this sub to not remove comments from trolls. This is pretty much a standard policy across the whole of reddit and the only reasons for not employing it are idealogical. Removing trolling is not the same as banning specific ideas or topics being genuinely discussed. Not doing so just makes btc a frustrating place to try and discuss things. It also means that any actual discussions outside the block size debate get very little traction as everyone gets dragged into the angry posts.
I should be clear though, the other mods of this sub are great and absolutely want what is best for bitcoin.

Isn’t this all just FUD

I am not writing this to sway anyone. This is what I genuinely think will happen, but of course I could be wrong about every single prediction. It saddens me enormously to write this. The current trajectory for Bitcoin is down and the the trajectory for Ethereum and other cryptocurrencies is up. There will likely be people who say “but Ethereum doesn’t have any uses cases”, my argument to that is; what use-cases does bitcoin have right now that could not immediately be adopted by Ethereum today? There will also be people who say “but if bitcoin dies then all other cryptocurrencies will die with it, because how could anyone trust their money if it might just disappear”? My argument to that is; all cryptocurrencies are still in their infancy, even bitcoin. The writing has been on the wall for Bitcoin for quite some time. I do think there will likely be one ‘great’ cryptocurrency, but until that cryptocurrency is adopted by the masses, that title is still available. If the title of ‘biggest cryptocurrency’ can be taken then it was likely never meant to have it very long anyway. If/When a cryptocurrency manages to achieve mass adoption then it will have hundreds of millions of people, companies, organisations and even countries defending it. At that point the entire system will be working towards it’s success. At that point, the current moral ambivalence towards attacking a minority chain will be seen as ridiculous. After mass adoption of a cryptocurrency (for example Ethereum) has occurred, grandma’s will be writing to their local MP in support of the cyberwar against the Ethereum competitor ‘Othereum’. That is decentralisation. Huge numbers of diverse entities working to defend it. This will never happen on a network as limited as bitcoin’s is. In fact bitcoin is actively losing allies.


I’m out. Ethereum is likely to take over this year as bitcoin becomes myspace. This may happen very rapidly. I hope I am wrong.


I hold both Bitcoin and Ethereum. I have held a number of different cryptocurrencies over the years, but my holdings were almost always 90-100% bitcoin until recently.
submitted by singularity87 to btc [link] [comments]

Is Ethereum taken over?

Yes, it sounds paranoid. And I hope I'm wrong, but sometimes I feel like we are back to the times of Blockstream taking over Bitcoin. Here are some recent Deja vu moments:
BTC: Andersen didn't want to be a benevolent dictator, so he passed control over Bitcoin to core developers. And they kicked him out.
ETH: Vitalik says in every interview that he is not controlling Ethereum anymore and that all recent major decisions were made without his involvement. And how he is happy about it.

BTC: Majority of bitcoin holders and redditors were for block increase, but core developers have decided otherwise.
ETH: Majority of ether holders and redditors are for issuance reduction to 1 ETH, but developers have decided otherwise.

BTC: Block increase required changing one single line of code, but developers explained that it is very hard and risky, that it required a lot of discussing and testing. At the same time, it wasn't hard or risky to change the whole bitcoin codebase, to make it segwit-compartible.
ETH: Issuance reduction requires changing one single line of code, but it's just too risky. Seemingly, more risky than creating from scratch completely new Ethereum 02.

BTC: Block increase was just a several months away, but every time the months passed, goalpost was shifted.
ETH: Issuance reduction is just a several months away, but the goalpost is shifting again and again.

BTC: Every time the reason for the postponing was different (because it was not the real reason, but a pretext).
Wait, let's first discuss all BIPs for half-year.
Wait, let's wait another half-year for a conference.
Wait, let's wait another half-year for the second conference.
Wait, let's wait another half-year for the segwit.
Zero inflation by Summer!
Wait, let's make it 4%, by Devcon.
Wait, a non-related bug found, let's postpone till after Devcon.
Wait, Santa is coming to town, let's postpone till January.
Wait, miners can fork away, let's postpone till difficulty bomb explodes.

BTC: While eventually, when the n-th deadline was reached, they just plainly refused to do it at all. Ever.
ETH: Now we are told that POW will run along POS, "for a foreseeable future".

BTC: Suggestions on scaling (like adding in-between blocks) were just not discussed and developers that were suggesting it weren't invited to the scaling conference. Instead, the conference discussed segwit.
ETH: ProgPOW plans are not discussed on developers meetings anymore. Why? Just because.

BTC: "Block increase would reduce number of nodes! Risk of 51% attack!". But giving all control to mining pools is OK, it's not a 51% attack.
ETH: "Issuance cut would reduce number of miners. Risk of 51% attack!". But developers doing things that good for miners only (high inflation, no ProgPOW) is OK, it's not a 51% attack.

BTC: Users, getting tired of broken promises, were losing faith in Bitcoin and leaving. Market share of Bitcoin have dropped from 85% to 32%.
ETH: Users, getting tired of broken promises, are losing faith in Ethereum and leaving. Market share of Ethereum have dropped from 32% to 9%.

BTC: Attempts to discuss it on forums were blocked by moderators "because it's offtopic: altcoin discussion".
ETH: Just yesterday it was a thread here, about all this concerns, about the need to reduce issuance, to cut inflation. Today the thread have mysteriously disappeared. Deleted by moderators. "Because it's offtopic: price was mentioned".
submitted by NZvolunarist to ethereum [link] [comments]

Which type of curren(t) do you want to see(cy)? An analysis of the intention behind bitcoin(s). Part 3

Part 1
Part 2
So I have been subbed to /bitcoin since it had less than two thousand subs but haven't posted there in years. I think I took a break from researching bitcoin to take a foray into the world of conspiracy around 2014 and only got back in to it around the beginning of 2017 but with a bit of sense of skepticism and cynicism about everything. I think I returned to /bitcoin around that time but there had been a rift that had emerged in the community between those that said that bitcoin was censoring any discussion around big blocks but then also just censorship in general. This lead to the formation of /btc which became the main spot for big blockers to gather to talk about protocol development. Following the fork of Bitcoin Cash and SegWit (BTC) in August 2017 the camps were further divided when the fence sitters were denied their SegWit2x compromise. Many from the fence sitters then deferred back to the incumbent bitcoin as citing muh network effect, liquidity, and hashpower while some who felt betrayed by the failure of getting S2X through went to support BCH for some attempt at on chain scaling rather than through pegged side chains or Lightning Network.
Bitcoin cash initially went with a modest doubling of the blocksize to 2MB but implemented some other features like a new more rapidly adjusting difficulty algorithm to protect themselves against hashpower fluctuations from the majority chain. In about July of that year I had seen what I potentially thought was someone LARPing on /biz/ but screencapped, that segwit2x which was scheduled for november 2017 would be called off and then hashpower would switch to BCH causing congestion and chain death spiral on BTC and BCH would pump massively. I was partial to the idea as the game theory and incentives on a big block bitcoin should attract miners. About a month after SegWit2x was indeed called off while the BTC blockchain was hugely congested, BCH went through a violent pump reaching 0.5 BTC/BCH on a European exchange called Kraken while it also pumped ridiculously on American exchange coinbase. Shortly afterwards the market took a giant dump all over those people who bought the top and it has since retraced to roughly 30:1 or so now.
After that pump though BCH kind of gained some bagholders I guess who started to learn the talking points presented by personalities like Roger Ver, Jihan Wu, Peter Rizun and Amaury Sechet. Craig S Wright by this time had been outed as Satoshi but had in 2016 publicly failed to convince the public with the cryptographic proof he provided. To which he later published the article I don't have the courage to prove I am the bitcoin creator. In essence this allowed many to disregard anything he offered to the crypto community though his company nChain was very much interested in providing the technical support to scale what he saw as the true implementation of bitcoin. Following debate around a set of planned protocol upgrades between a bitcoin node implementation by his company nChain and the developers of another client Bitcoin ABC (adjustable block cap), the two parties both dug their heels in and wouldn't compromise.
As it became clear that a fork was imminent there was a lot of vitriol tossed out towards Wright, another big billionaire backer Calvin Ayre and other personalities like Roger Ver and Jihan Wu. Craig's credibility was disregarded because of his failure to provide convincing cryptographic proof but still people who wanted to pursue the protocol upgrades that nChain were planning (as it best followed their interpretation of the bitcoin white paper) pursued his variant, while others who followed the socia consensus deferred to the positions of their personalities like Wu, Ver, and Sechet but even developers from Ethereum and other protocols chimed in to convince everyone that CSW is a fraud. This was referred to as the hash war and was the first time that the bitcoin protocol had been contentiously hard forked.

Hashpower is the CPU cycles you can commit to the Proof of Work function in bitcoin and the majority will generate the longest chain as they have the most proof of work. To win the contentious hard fork legitimately and make sure your chain will always be safe going forward you need to maintain your version of the blockchain with 51% of the hashpower on the network and force the other parties to continue to spend money on building a blockchain that is never going to be inserted in to the majority chain. As well as this you need to convince exchanges that you have the majority chain and have them feel safe to accept deposits and withdrawals so that they don't lose money in the chaos. This is how it would play out if both parties acted according to the rules of bitcoin and the Nakamoto Consensus.

There was a lot of shit talking between the two parties on social media with Craig Wright making a number of claims such as "you split, we bankrupt you" "I don't care if there is no ability to move coins to an exchange for a year" and other such warnings not to engage in foul play.. To explain this aftermath is quite tedious so It might be better to defer to this video for the in depth analysis but basically Roger Ver had to rent hashpower that was supposed to be mining BTC from his mining farm, Jihan Wu did the same from his Bitmain Mining Farm which was a violation of his fiduciary duty as the CEO of a company preparing for an IPO. In this video of a livestream during the hashwar where Andreas Brekken admits to basically colluding with exchange owners like Coinbase, Kraken (exchange Roger Ver invested in), Bitfinex and others to release a patched ABC client to the exchanges and introducing "checkpoints" in to the BCH blockchain (which he even says is arguably "centralisation") in order to prevent deep reorgs of the BCH blockchain.
>"We knew we were going to win in 30 mins we had the victory because of these checkpoints that we released to a cartel of friendly businesses in a patch so then we just sat around drinking beers all day".
By releasing a patched client that has code in it to prevent deep reorgs by having the client refer to a checkpoint from a block mined by someone who supported BCHABC if another group of hash power was to try to insert a new chain history, this cartel of exchanges and mining farm operators conspired in private to change the nature of the bitcoin protocol and Nakamoto Consensus. Since the fork there have been a number of other BCH clients that have come up that require funding and have their own ideas about what things to implement on the BCH chain. What began to emerge was actually not necessarily an intention of scaling bitcoin but rather to implement Schnorr signatures to obfuscate transactions and to date the ABC client still has a default blocksize of 2MB but advertised as 16MB.
What this demonstrates for BCH is that through the collusion, the cartel can immediately get a favourable outcome from the developers to keep their businesses secure and from the personalities/developers to work on obfuscating records of transactions on the chain rather than scaling their protocol. After the SegWit fork, many from the BCH camp alleged that through the funding to Blockstream from AXA and groups that tied to the Bilderbergs, Blockstream would be beholden to the legacy banking and would be a spoke and hub centralised model, so naturally many of the "down with central banks anarcho capitalist types" had gathered in the BCH community. Through these sympathies it seems that people have been susceptible to being sold things like coin mixing and obfuscation with developers offering their opinions about how money needs to be anonymous to stop the evil government and central banks despite ideas like Mises’ Regression Theorem, which claims that in order for something to be money in the most proper sense, it must be traceable to an originally non-monetary barter commodity such as gold.
What this suggests is that there is an underlying intent from the people that have mechanisms to exert their will upon the protocol of bitcoin and that if obfuscation is their first priority rather than working on creating a scalable platform, this demonstrates that they don't wish to actually be global money but more so something that makes it easier to move money that you don't want seen. Roger Ver has often expressed sentiments of injustice about the treatment of Silk Road found Ross Ulbricht and donated a large amount of money to a fund for his defence. I initially got in to bitcoin seeking out the Silk Road and though I only wanted to test it to buy small quantities of mdma, lsd, and mescaline back in 2011 there was all sorts of criminal activity on there like scam manuals, counterfeits, ID, Credit Card info, and other darknet markets like armoury were selling pretty crazy weapons. It has been alleged by Craig Wright that in his capacity as a digital forensics expert he was involved with tracing bitcoin that was used to fund the trafficking of 12-16 year olds on the silk road. There have been attempts at debunking such claims by saying that silk road was moderated for such stuff by Ulbricht and others, but one only has to take a look in to the premise of pizza gate to understand that there it may be possible to hide in plain site with certain code words for utilising the market services and escrow of websites like the silk road. The recent pedo bust from South Korea demonstrates the importance of being able to track bitcoin transactions and if the first thing BCH wanted to do after separating itself from Satoshi's Vision and running on developer and cartel agendas was to implement obfuscation methods, this type of criminal activity will only proliferate.
Questions one must ask oneself then are things like why do they want this first? Are some of these developers, personalities and cartel businesses sitting on coins that they know are tarnished from the silk road and want to implement obfuscation practices so they can actually cash in some of the value they are unable to access? Merchants from the silk road 1 are still being caught even as recently as this year when they attempted to move coins that were known to have moved through the silk road. Chain analytics are only becoming more and more powerful and the records can never be changed under the original bitcoin protocol but with developer induced protocol changes like Schnorr signatures, and coinjoin it may be possible to start laundering these coins out in to circulation. I must admit with the cynicism I had towards government and law enforcement and my enjoying controlled substances occasionally I was sympathetic to Ross and donated to his legal fund back in the day and for many years claimed that I wouldn't pay my taxes when I wanted to cash out of bitcoin. I think many people in the space possess this same kind of mentality and subsequently can be preyed upon by people who wish to do much more in the obfuscation than dodge tax and party.
Another interesting observation is that despite the fact that btc spun off as a result of censorship around big block scaling on bitcoin, that subreddit itself has engaged in plenty of censorship for basically anyone who wants to discuss the ideas presented by Dr Craig Wright on that sub. When I posted my part 2 of this series in there a week ago I was immediately met with intense negativity and ad hominems so as to discourage others from reading the submission and my post history was immediately throttled to 1 comment every 10 mins. This is not quite as bad as cryptocurrency where my post made it through the new queue to gather some upvotes and a discussion started but I was immediately banned from that sub for 7 days for reason "Content standards - you're making accusations based on no evidence just a dump of links that do nothing to justify your claims except maybe trustnodes link (which has posted fabricated information about this subreddit mods) and a Reddit post. Keep the conspiracy theories in /conspiracy" My post was also kept at zero in bitcoin and conspiracy so technically btc was the least censored besides C_S_T.
In addition to the throttling I was also flagged by the u/BsvAlertBot which says whether or not a user has a questionable amount of activity in BSV subreddits and then a break down of your percentages. This was done in response to combat the "toxic trolls" of BSV but within bitcoincashSV there are many users that have migrated from what was originally supposed to be a uncensored subreddit to discuss bitcoin and many such as u/cryptacritic17 has have switched sides after having been made to essentially DOXX themselves in btc to prove that they aren't a toxic troll for raising criticisms of the way certain things are handled within that coin and development groups. Other prominent users such as u/jim-btc have been banned for impersonating another user which was in actual fact himself and he has uploaded evidence of him being in control of said account to the blockchain. Mod Log, Mod Damage Control, Mod Narrative BTFO. Interestingly in the comments on the picture uploaded to the blockchain you can see the spin to call him an SV shill when in actual fact he is just an OG bitcoiner that wanted bitcoin to scale as per the whitepaper.
What is essentially going on in the Bitcoin space is that there is a battle of the protocols and a battle for social consensus. The incumbent BTC has majority of the attention and awareness as it is being backed by legacy banking and finance with In-Q-Tel and AXA funding blockstream as well as Epstein associates and MIT, but in the power vaccum that presented itself as to who would steward the big block variant, a posse of cryptoanarchists have gained control of the social media forums and attempted to exert their will upon what should essentially be a Set In Stone Protocol to create something that facilitates their economic activity (such as selling explosives online)) while attempting to leverage their position as moderators who control the social forum to spin their actions as something different (note memorydealers is Roger Ver). For all his tears for the children killed in wars, it seems that what cryptoanarchists such as u/memorydealers want is to delist/shut down governments and they will go to any efforts such as censorship to make sure that it is their implementation of bitcoin that will do that. Are we really going to have a better world with people easier able to hide transactions/launder money?
Because of this power vacuum there also exists a number of different development groups but what is emerging now is that they are struggling for money to fund their development. The main engineering is done by self professed benevolent dictator Amaury Sechet (deadalnix) who in leaked telegram screen caps appears to be losing it as funding for development has dried up and money raised in an anarchist fashion wasn't compliant with laws around fundraising sources and FVNI (development society that manages BCH development and these donations) is run by known scammer David R Allen. David was founder of 2014 Israeli ICO Getgems (GEMZ) that scammed investors out of more than 2500 Bitcoins. The SV supported sky-lark who released this information has since deleted all their accounts but other users have claimed that sky-lark was sent personal details about themselves and pictures of their loved ones and subsequently deleted all their social media accounts afterwards.
There are other shifty behaviours like hiring Japanese influencers to shill their coin, recruiting a Hayden Otto that up until 2018 was shilling Pascal Coin to become a major ambassador for BCH in the Australian city of Townsville. Townsville was claimed to be BCH city hosting a BCH conference there and claiming loads of adoption, but at the conference itself their idea of demonstrating adoption was handing a Point of Sale device to the bar to accept bitcoin payments but Otto actually just putting his credit card behind the bar to settle and he would keep the BCH that everyone paid. In the lead up to the conference the second top moderator of btc was added to the moderators of townsville to shill their coin but has ended up with the townsville subreddit wanting to ban all bitcoin talk from the subreddit.
Many of the BCH developers are now infighting as funding dries up and they find themselves floundering with no vision of how to achieve scale or get actual real world adoption. Amaury has recently accused Peter Rizun of propagandising, told multiple users in the telegram to fuck off and from all accounts appears to be a malignant narcissist incapable of maintaining any kind of healthy relationship with people he is supposed to be working with. Peter Rizun has begun lurking in bitcoincashSV and recognising some of the ideas coming from BSV as having merit while Roger has started to distance himself from the creation of BCH. Interestingly at a point early in the BCH history Roger believed Dr Craig Wright was Satoshi, but once CSW wouldn't go along with their planned road map and revealed the fact he had patents on blockchain technology and wanted to go down a path that worked with Law, Roger retracted that statement and said he was tricked by Craig. He joined in on the faketoshi campaign and has been attempted to be sued by Dr Wright for libel in the UK to which Roger refused to engage citing grounds of jurisdiction. Ironically this avoidance of Roger to meet Dr Wright in court to defend his claims can be seen as the very argument against justice being served by private courts under an anarchocapitalist paradigm with essentially someone with resources simply being able to either flee a private court's jurisdiction or engage a team of lawyers that can bury any chances of an everyday person being able to get justice.
There is much more going on with the BCH drama that can be explained in a single post but it is clear that some of the major personalities in the project are very much interested in having their ideals projected on to the technical implementation of the bitcoin protocol and have no qualms spouting rhetoric around the anti-censorship qualities of bitcoin/BCH while at the same time employing significant censorship on their social media forums to control what people are exposed to and getting rid of anyone who challenges their vision. I posit that were this coin to become a success, these "benevolent dictators" as they put it would love their new found positions of wealth/dominance yet if their behaviour to get there is anything to go by, would demonstrate the same power tripping practices of censorship, weasel acts, misleading people about adoption statistics and curating of the narrative. When the hashrate from Rogers minging operation on BCH dropped dramatically and a lot of empty blocks were being mined, his employer and 2IC moderator u/BitcoinXio (who stepped in to replace roger as CEO) was in the sub informing everyone it was simply variance that was the reason when only a few days later it was revealed that they had reduced their hash power significantly. This is not appropriate behaviour for one of the primary enterprises engaged in stewarding BCH and encouraging adoption nor is the inability to be accountable for such dishonest practices as well. It seems treats btc as their own personal spam page where Roger can ask for donations despite it being against the sub rules and spin/ban any challenge to the narrative they seek to create.
Let's see how the censorship goes as I post this around a few of the same places as the last piece. Stay tuned for the next write up where I take a deep dive in to the coin that everyone doesn't want you to know about.
submitted by whipnil to C_S_T [link] [comments]

Overview of Major Risks of Buying Nyancoins - Version 6

This is the sixth version of the NYAN risks document (based on v5 (v4 (v3 , v2 and original)). These are obsoleted periodically as the old ones get archived to allow for comments again via a new post, to re-examine the risks in light of changes, and for greater visibility.
The purpose of these documents is to provide a best-effort discussion of major risk factors in gambling on NYAN, modeled on the risks disclosure in a 10k (annual report) which is mandated for publicly traded companies in the United States. This document is provided with no guarantee that major risk factors have not been missed, and it is important to recognize my (coinaday) personal bias from holding about one-third of the total supply of NYAN.
Please comment on any risks which are not mentioned here or additional aspects of risks here you think should be further emphasized or any other possible disclosure you think would be helpful to a person considering gambling on NYAN.
Executive summary
Nyancoins have no exchange, no core developer at the moment, uncertain demand, have had inconsistent blocks, are very vulnerable to 51% attacks, have the potential for serious bugs, an uncertain legal situation, concentrated ownership, low liquidity, depend upon the Internet, may be addictive, and could make you wealthy, which has been alleged to lead to more problems.
Introduction: This is my best attempt to collect every major risk factor from buying Nyancoins, although I can offer no warranty of fitness for this information for any purposes. I believe in honesty and forthrightness. Having this available and obvious is a simple matter of basic decency. Much, hopefully all, of this information has been discussed previously in /nyancoins, but this document in particular is about being up-to-date and central. This page will be updated clearly as appropriate if situations change on a best-effort basis (which may mean updates do not happen for months at times, unfortunately; please ping for faster updates).
If you believe that I am missing something, please note any other major risks you see in the comments.
Nyancoins are not currently traded on any exchange. It may be listed on one minor exchange but have no volume there. Obviously an unlisted cryptocurrency is in a bad situation. I hope to see us gain a listing on an exchange which supports low volume coins in 2020 but I have no current prospect of this and it should be considered a longshot at best.
Previously we traded on Trade Satoshi and prior to that on Cryptopia and prior to that on Cryptsy. All three exchanges failed us (Trade Satoshi delisted without allowing withdrawal; Cryptopia delisted and failed to provide withdrawal and then went bankrupt; Cryptsy went bankrupt). This is a further reminder that exchanges are a major risk and one should be extremely careful to not keep more coins on there than one can comfortably afford to lose.
In theory, there are decentralized exchange technologies, notably CATE; however, I think we currently lack some needed APIs for this. I'm not certain but we haven't demonstrated the capability yet. On-Reddit exchanges are also possible with tipbots, but require trust as they are not atomic. It should be possible to build an "exchangebot" similarly, although I'm not currently aware of one, but my concept would still have the bot as a trusted central party.
Atomic cross-chain transactions seem to me like a very promising core technology ultimately for building exchanges which can be more proveably secure. They could also allow exchanges to share a common listing protocol as well without having to trust the other exchanges (at least, beyond the core protocol development and maintenance; tanstaafl). This is not yet accomplished though and in the meantime we remain vulnerable to periodic exchange failures.
Core developer: Although we have good general tech support in this community and have put up supporting infrastructure, there is not anyone officially currently working on core client code. This is a significant problem for the long-term, although we are not in any immediate known need of changes.
ImASharkRawwwr has returned to the community and may do future client updates, but I'm leaving the lack of core developer risk unchanged until there is an update released. This is not intended as a slight in any way but merely being cautious in the risks document and recognizing that we aren't certain when or if there will be a next release.
Demand: NYAN was introduced in 2014 and during the second half of that year had so little demand that it almost died out. In January 2015 I got involved in the coin and for most of 2015 and 2016 I was the majority of the buying pressure. I base these statements on my recollection of the trading history so far and the fact that I have acquired more than 120 million coins, somewhere around 41% of the coins (latest hodling report, June 2017), as well as my observations that I had usually had the leading major bid, and usually the leading bid regardless of size.
In 2017, I have generally not been a major factor in the demand, as I haven’t had money to spare to gamble on NYAN. In June 2017, we have had a spike in buying from an unknown source.
It is unknown whether significant demand for NYAN will continue. Because its value is purely speculative, it is entirely possible that demand for NYAN could simply end. This is a fundamental risk in gambling on NYAN; it is entirely possible that its value will go to zero and not recover.
By the end of 2019, we lost exchange listing. I know of no current demand for NYAN. I hope to see us listed and demand exist in the future but should not be relied upon. NYAN last traded around 9 satoshi according to coinmarketcap but it may well not even trade that high even if relisted someday - there could be a flood of selling and no buyers.
Inconsistent blocks:
Although NYAN is designed to produce a block every minute, there have been times where there has been more than 24 hours between blocks. This results because of an imperfect difficulty function and low base hashing, along with price fluctuations, which can combine to have a low difficulty making the coin attractive for a flood of hashing power which can lead the difficulty function to overcompensate, leaving it stuck with a high difficulty no longer profitable to mine.
I haven’t observed this lately, that is, I don’t recall incidents of this in 2017, but I’ve been paying far less attention to it as well. It is entirely possible for this to recur, as the difficulty function is not fixed (it would require a hard fork to fix it). We seem to have more baseline hashing which helps to avoid this, but it is possible for us to lose that.
A workaround is to use large transaction fees (I've set my client to 337 NYAN) which is enough to cause pools to generally solve a block even if the chain were otherwise stuck. It may be possible to include a better difficulty function in a hard fork client, but it is unknown when if ever this would be done and it's not yet clear what design improvement if any would fix this.
51% attack: Because of the generally quite low hashing power on NYAN, it is highly vulnerable to a 51% attack. Either a leading pool or a new one could choose to do a denial-of-service attack, whether for extortion, lulz, or some other reason (like coinaday being annoying). Such an attack is capable of preventing any transaction processing for as long as it is sustained. I consider this a relatively low risk since I expect we would simply wait it out (and potentially not even notice such an attack for quite a while given the low volume of transactions currently), but it is definitely a potential vulnerability.
Bugs: It is possible that there are bugs in the underlying code. I have never read through all of the bitcoin or nyancoin code, of any version, nor even studied the original bitcoin whitepaper in depth (by the way, we oughta make up a nyancoin whitepaper or ten someday), meaning I have no professional or technical knowledge about whether or not the system is fundamentally sound. I've been going based on "it seems to be working, so it's probably fine", which is, shall we say, more of an engineering than scientific approach.
I have heard reference to a "time warp" bug vulnerability in the KGW difficulty function which Nyancoins has. I do not know details and my understanding is a fix to this would require a fork to change the difficulty function, so I do not anticipate a fix before NYAN3, the term for an eventual hard fork, but it is unknown when if ever this would be done. I consider this vulnerability to be likely to be related to the fundamental weakness to difficulty spikes after large amounts of hashing jumps on the network. Hostile (or simply passing interest with large capacity) hashing does degrade the performance of the network. As a workaround, this class of attack can be mitigated with a transaction to 'unstick' the chain after, since the difficulty function will adjust in the next block after enough wall-time has passed since the last block (so only need one high difficulty solve which can be triggered by a transaction fee).
Legal: Bitcoin faces uncertain legal situations in almost every country. Nyancoin is even more uncertain, as people tend to consider bitcoin and not address impacts on altcoins. Between the potential tax implications and banking regulations and currency laws, there are a wide variety of ways a person could make a felony-level mistake. This can be somewhat mitigated by merely buying and holding, as you won't be responsible for KYC/AML presumably (although an argument could be made in your purchase), and presumably unrealized capital gains wouldn't be taxable (but I am neither a lawyer nor accountant nor any sort of expert on the relevant accounting laws in any country).
Somehow getting legal opinions for Nyancoins in every country would be very useful in my opinion. If Bitcoin and altcoins are well-studied in a given country it should be relatively easy to adapt those opinions and research to Nyancoins, but it would still require some pro bono work in any case. So...hopefully we'll get some lawyer Nekonauts someday who are willing to semi-officially give us an opinion. In the meantime...hope that common sense can save you. If you sell Nyancoins directly, you're going to need to comply with the KYC/AML types of laws of your country. If you're going to do banking operations...may the central bank have mercy on your soul.
I think the best advantage we have is the same bitcoin had for its first years: we're too small for anyone to care. But since we plan to grow significantly, we need to be aware of our legal issues upon scale. Which is to say, whether or not you're allowed to sell 10,000 NYAN to your friend probably has a lot to do with whether your friend legally acquired whatever is being offered in exchange, and whether the value of what you get in return is above a certain level or not. I'm not going to try guessing that level precisely because I know I'll be wrong. $1 is probably fine. $10,000 is probably illegal without some significant licensing. I would suggest either not touching fiat or else deliberately capping it without verification after getting an independent local expert legal opinion.
concentration: The fact that I hold about 41%(? not sure the exact percentage as of Dec 2017 ; need to do updated survey to check; 41% sounds slightly high to me but I'll see...I'll try to update by the end of the year or shortly after) of the currently outstanding NYAN could be a major risk factor, particularly if I do not act in the best long-term interests of the strength of Nyancoins. For instance, I could pull my bids, sell only a small part of my holdings, crash the market, and potentially buy a lot of volume for a lower price. While I cannot foresee any circumstance under which I would do this, it is certainly conceivable that I could be financially, legally, or morally obligated to do so if I were to become insolvent.
Liquidity: There is very little trading activity in NYAN. Therefore, large purchases will drive the price up and large sales will drive the price down. This means that entering and exiting a position is likely to result in "slippage", so even if the price has increased slightly overall since the time before one entered a position to the time before one exits it, it is quite possible that the overall trade will be neutral or negative as a result of the pressure on the market. For an extreme example, my own position would be essentially impossible to exit from the market without crashing the price, and even so it would likely be difficult to find buyers even at a satoshi, based on that I currently am the majority of the bids on the market. This is closely tied to the concentration risk but if I were to exit NYAN for any reason or simply fail to continue to renew bids the liquidity would dry up even further.
At the end of 2019, having no exchange, there is functionally zero liquidity. In theory peer to peer trading could still be done but I’m unaware of any.
Internet outage: if the Internet goes down, we hit a very nasty scenario. We can't process transactions, and all the miners go into a race to make 'useless' blocks on their own. If the Internet were never to come back up, Nyancoins would be dead. If there is a daylong internet outage, the longest blockchain discovered after, presumably representing the most hashing power dedicated to empty blocks during that outage, will win. So I suppose the block rewards in that case are for having the faith in Nyancoins to keep hashing and storing the blockchain during the day without the Internet.
addictive: This was a curiosity to me when I started. Now it's an obsession for me. I'm constantly thinking about how I can help to smooth the path for Nyancoins to grow stronger and better and more valuable. You may find that once you start to realize the impact you can have upon Nyancoins, and that Nyancoins can have upon you, that you start to become addicted as well. It is possible to substitute another addiction in its place, such as dogecoins or pcp, but it is not recommended.
Nyancoin addictions are considered 'mostly harmless'. The exception is if you go 'full coinaday' and start to accumulate more than 10% of your assets in Nyancoins. In this, this is essentially a variety of gambling addiction. I would argue that it beats roulette because you can tilt the odds in your favor, but then, I would argue that, wouldn't I?
mo' nyan mo' problems: Some people have claimed that more money leads to more problems. Since nyan is money, it follows as a consequence of the conjecture. Should this be the case, your increasing nyan could potentially lead to such problems in the future as: enhanced attention from revenue collection services of all kinds (governmental and private), swarms of fake friends and gold-diggers, excessive risk-taking as a result of feelings of invincibility, an increase in certain varieties of targeted marketing, possible disqualification for asset-based welfare for you (or even your children, for instance college financial assistance), an inability to remember how many houses you own, or other serious problems.
The lack of any exchange trading Nyancoins is a major risk factor in its future survival. If it is listed, the lack of development is likely the next most serious. The coin currently survives but whether it will continue to do so in the future is far from certain. If those of us who have found or come back to NYAN choose to keep it alive, I believe it still has a chance at surviving into a stronger future.
This self-certified infallible message has been brought to you as a Public Service Announcement of the NYAN Public Relations Council, a transparent front organization of notoriously lovable philanthropist and major NYAN hodler coinaday.
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Bitcoin Table of contents expand: 1. What is Bitcoin? 2. Understanding Bitcoin 3. How Bitcoin Works 4. What's a Bitcoin Worth? 5. How Bitcoin Began 6. Who Invented Bitcoin? 7. Before Satoshi 8. Why Is Satoshi Anonymous? 9. The Suspects 10. Can Satoshi's Identity Be Proven? 11. Receiving Bitcoins As Payment 12. Working For Bitcoins 13. Bitcoin From Interest Payments 14. Bitcoins From Gambling 15. Investing in Bitcoins 16. Risks of Bitcoin Investing 17. Bitcoin Regulatory Risk 18. Security Risk of Bitcoins 19. Insurance Risk 20. Risk of Bitcoin Fraud 21. Market Risk 22. Bitcoin's Tax Risk What is Bitcoin?
Bitcoin is a digital currency created in January 2009. It follows the ideas set out in a white paper by the mysterious Satoshi Nakamoto, whose true identity is yet to be verified. Bitcoin offers the promise of lower transaction fees than traditional online payment mechanisms and is operated by a decentralized authority, unlike government-issued currencies.
There are no physical bitcoins, only balances kept on a public ledger in the cloud, that – along with all Bitcoin transactions – is verified by a massive amount of computing power. Bitcoins are not issued or backed by any banks or governments, nor are individual bitcoins valuable as a commodity. Despite it not being legal tender, Bitcoin charts high on popularity, and has triggered the launch of other virtual currencies collectively referred to as Altcoins.
Understanding Bitcoin Bitcoin is a type of cryptocurrency: Balances are kept using public and private "keys," which are long strings of numbers and letters linked through the mathematical encryption algorithm that was used to create them. The public key (comparable to a bank account number) serves as the address which is published to the world and to which others may send bitcoins. The private key (comparable to an ATM PIN) is meant to be a guarded secret and only used to authorize Bitcoin transmissions. Style notes: According to the official Bitcoin Foundation, the word "Bitcoin" is capitalized in the context of referring to the entity or concept, whereas "bitcoin" is written in the lower case when referring to a quantity of the currency (e.g. "I traded 20 bitcoin") or the units themselves. The plural form can be either "bitcoin" or "bitcoins."
How Bitcoin Works Bitcoin is one of the first digital currencies to use peer-to-peer technology to facilitate instant payments. The independent individuals and companies who own the governing computing power and participate in the Bitcoin network, also known as "miners," are motivated by rewards (the release of new bitcoin) and transaction fees paid in bitcoin. These miners can be thought of as the decentralized authority enforcing the credibility of the Bitcoin network. New bitcoin is being released to the miners at a fixed, but periodically declining rate, such that the total supply of bitcoins approaches 21 million. One bitcoin is divisible to eight decimal places (100 millionths of one bitcoin), and this smallest unit is referred to as a Satoshi. If necessary, and if the participating miners accept the change, Bitcoin could eventually be made divisible to even more decimal places. Bitcoin mining is the process through which bitcoins are released to come into circulation. Basically, it involves solving a computationally difficult puzzle to discover a new block, which is added to the blockchain and receiving a reward in the form of a few bitcoins. The block reward was 50 new bitcoins in 2009; it decreases every four years. As more and more bitcoins are created, the difficulty of the mining process – that is, the amount of computing power involved – increases. The mining difficulty began at 1.0 with Bitcoin's debut back in 2009; at the end of the year, it was only 1.18. As of February 2019, the mining difficulty is over 6.06 billion. Once, an ordinary desktop computer sufficed for the mining process; now, to combat the difficulty level, miners must use faster hardware like Application-Specific Integrated Circuits (ASIC), more advanced processing units like Graphic Processing Units (GPUs), etc.
What's a Bitcoin Worth? In 2017 alone, the price of Bitcoin rose from a little under $1,000 at the beginning of the year to close to $19,000, ending the year more than 1,400% higher. Bitcoin's price is also quite dependent on the size of its mining network since the larger the network is, the more difficult – and thus more costly – it is to produce new bitcoins. As a result, the price of bitcoin has to increase as its cost of production also rises. The Bitcoin mining network's aggregate power has more than tripled over the past twelve months.
How Bitcoin Began
Aug. 18, 2008: The domain name is registered. Today, at least, this domain is "WhoisGuard Protected," meaning the identity of the person who registered it is not public information.
Oct. 31, 2008: Someone using the name Satoshi Nakamoto makes an announcement on The Cryptography Mailing list at "I've been working on a new electronic cash system that's fully peer-to-peer, with no trusted third party. The paper is available at" This link leads to the now-famous white paper published on entitled "Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System." This paper would become the Magna Carta for how Bitcoin operates today.
Jan. 3, 2009: The first Bitcoin block is mined, Block 0. This is also known as the "genesis block" and contains the text: "The Times 03/Jan/2009 Chancellor on brink of second bailout for banks," perhaps as proof that the block was mined on or after that date, and perhaps also as relevant political commentary.
Jan. 8, 2009: The first version of the Bitcoin software is announced on The Cryptography Mailing list.
Jan. 9, 2009: Block 1 is mined, and Bitcoin mining commences in earnest.
Who Invented Bitcoin?
No one knows. Not conclusively, at any rate. Satoshi Nakamoto is the name associated with the person or group of people who released the original Bitcoin white paper in 2008 and worked on the original Bitcoin software that was released in 2009. The Bitcoin protocol requires users to enter a birthday upon signup, and we know that an individual named Satoshi Nakamoto registered and put down April 5 as a birth date. And that's about it.
Before Satoshi
Though it is tempting to believe the media's spin that Satoshi Nakamoto is a solitary, quixotic genius who created Bitcoin out of thin air, such innovations do not happen in a vacuum. All major scientific discoveries, no matter how original-seeming, were built on previously existing research. There are precursors to Bitcoin: Adam Back’s Hashcash, invented in 1997, and subsequently Wei Dai’s b-money, Nick Szabo’s bit gold and Hal Finney’s Reusable Proof of Work. The Bitcoin white paper itself cites Hashcash and b-money, as well as various other works spanning several research fields.
Why Is Satoshi Anonymous?
There are two primary motivations for keeping Bitcoin's inventor keeping his or her or their identity secret. One is privacy. As Bitcoin has gained in popularity – becoming something of a worldwide phenomenon – Satoshi Nakamoto would likely garner a lot of attention from the media and from governments.
The other reason is safety. Looking at 2009 alone, 32,489 blocks were mined; at the then-reward rate of 50 BTC per block, the total payout in 2009 was 1,624,500 BTC, which at today’s prices is over $900 million. One may conclude that only Satoshi and perhaps a few other people were mining through 2009 and that they possess a majority of that $900 million worth of BTC. Someone in possession of that much BTC could become a target of criminals, especially since bitcoins are less like stocks and more like cash, where the private keys needed to authorize spending could be printed out and literally kept under a mattress. While it's likely the inventor of Bitcoin would take precautions to make any extortion-induced transfers traceable, remaining anonymous is a good way for Satoshi to limit exposure.
The Suspects
Numerous people have been suggested as possible Satoshi Nakamoto by major media outlets. Oct. 10, 2011, The New Yorker published an article speculating that Nakamoto might be Irish cryptography student Michael Clear or economic sociologist Vili Lehdonvirta. A day later, Fast Company suggested that Nakamoto could be a group of three people – Neal King, Vladimir Oksman and Charles Bry – who together appear on a patent related to secure communications that were filed two months before was registered. A Vice article published in May 2013 added more suspects to the list, including Gavin Andresen, the Bitcoin project’s lead developer; Jed McCaleb, co-founder of now-defunct Bitcoin exchange Mt. Gox; and famed Japanese mathematician Shinichi Mochizuki.
In December 2013, Techcrunch published an interview with researcher Skye Grey who claimed textual analysis of published writings shows a link between Satoshi and bit-gold creator Nick Szabo. And perhaps most famously, in March 2014, Newsweek ran a cover article claiming that Satoshi is actually an individual named Satoshi Nakamoto – a 64-year-old Japanese-American engineer living in California. The list of suspects is long, and all the individuals deny being Satoshi.
Can Satoshi's Identity Be Proven?
It would seem even early collaborators on the project don’t have verifiable proof of Satoshi’s identity. To reveal conclusively who Satoshi Nakamoto is, a definitive link would need to be made between his/her activity with Bitcoin and his/her identity. That could come in the form of linking the party behind the domain registration of, email and forum accounts used by Satoshi Nakamoto, or ownership of some portion of the earliest mined bitcoins. Even though the bitcoins Satoshi likely possesses are traceable on the blockchain, it seems he/she has yet to cash them out in a way that reveals his/her identity. If Satoshi were to move his/her bitcoins to an exchange today, this might attract attention, but it seems unlikely that a well-funded and successful exchange would betray a customer's privacy.
Receiving Bitcoins As Payment
Bitcoins can be accepted as a means of payment for products sold or services provided. If you have a brick and mortar store, just display a sign saying “Bitcoin Accepted Here” and many of your customers may well take you up on it; the transactions can be handled with the requisite hardware terminal or wallet address through QR codes and touch screen apps. An online business can easily accept bitcoins by just adding this payment option to the others it offers, like credit cards, PayPal, etc. Online payments will require a Bitcoin merchant tool (an external processor like Coinbase or BitPay).
Working For Bitcoins
Those who are self-employed can get paid for a job in bitcoins. There are several websites/job boards which are dedicated to the digital currency:
Work For Bitcoin brings together work seekers and prospective employers through its websiteCoinality features jobs – freelance, part-time and full-time – that offer payment in bitcoins, as well as Dogecoin and LitecoinJobs4Bitcoins, part of reddit.comBitGigs
Bitcoin From Interest Payments
Another interesting way (literally) to earn bitcoins is by lending them out and being repaid in the currency. Lending can take three forms – direct lending to someone you know; through a website which facilitates peer-to-peer transactions, pairing borrowers and lenders; or depositing bitcoins in a virtual bank that offers a certain interest rate for Bitcoin accounts. Some such sites are Bitbond, BitLendingClub, and BTCjam. Obviously, you should do due diligence on any third-party site.
Bitcoins From Gambling
It’s possible to play at casinos that cater to Bitcoin aficionados, with options like online lotteries, jackpots, spread betting, and other games. Of course, the pros and cons and risks that apply to any sort of gambling and betting endeavors are in force here too.
Investing in Bitcoins
There are many Bitcoin supporters who believe that digital currency is the future. Those who endorse it are of the view that it facilitates a much faster, no-fee payment system for transactions across the globe. Although it is not itself any backed by any government or central bank, bitcoin can be exchanged for traditional currencies; in fact, its exchange rate against the dollar attracts potential investors and traders interested in currency plays. Indeed, one of the primary reasons for the growth of digital currencies like Bitcoin is that they can act as an alternative to national fiat money and traditional commodities like gold.
In March 2014, the IRS stated that all virtual currencies, including bitcoins, would be taxed as property rather than currency. Gains or losses from bitcoins held as capital will be realized as capital gains or losses, while bitcoins held as inventory will incur ordinary gains or losses.
Like any other asset, the principle of buying low and selling high applies to bitcoins. The most popular way of amassing the currency is through buying on a Bitcoin exchange, but there are many other ways to earn and own bitcoins. Here are a few options which Bitcoin enthusiasts can explore.
Risks of Bitcoin Investing
Though Bitcoin was not designed as a normal equity investment (no shares have been issued), some speculative investors were drawn to the digital money after it appreciated rapidly in May 2011 and again in November 2013. Thus, many people purchase bitcoin for its investment value rather than as a medium of exchange.
However, their lack of guaranteed value and digital nature means the purchase and use of bitcoins carries several inherent risks. Many investor alerts have been issued by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), and other agencies.
The concept of a virtual currency is still novel and, compared to traditional investments, Bitcoin doesn't have much of a long-term track record or history of credibility to back it. With their increasing use, bitcoins are becoming less experimental every day, of course; still, after eight years, they (like all digital currencies) remain in a development phase, still evolving. "It is pretty much the highest-risk, highest-return investment that you can possibly make,” says Barry Silbert, CEO of Digital Currency Group, which builds and invests in Bitcoin and blockchain companies.
Bitcoin Regulatory Risk
Investing money into Bitcoin in any of its many guises is not for the risk-averse. Bitcoins are a rival to government currency and may be used for black market transactions, money laundering, illegal activities or tax evasion. As a result, governments may seek to regulate, restrict or ban the use and sale of bitcoins, and some already have. Others are coming up with various rules. For example, in 2015, the New York State Department of Financial Services finalized regulations that would require companies dealing with the buy, sell, transfer or storage of bitcoins to record the identity of customers, have a compliance officer and maintain capital reserves. The transactions worth $10,000 or more will have to be recorded and reported.
Although more agencies will follow suit, issuing rules and guidelines, the lack of uniform regulations about bitcoins (and other virtual currency) raises questions over their longevity, liquidity, and universality.
Security Risk of Bitcoins
Bitcoin exchanges are entirely digital and, as with any virtual system, are at risk from hackers, malware and operational glitches. If a thief gains access to a Bitcoin owner's computer hard drive and steals his private encryption key, he could transfer the stolen Bitcoins to another account. (Users can prevent this only if bitcoins are stored on a computer which is not connected to the internet, or else by choosing to use a paper wallet – printing out the Bitcoin private keys and addresses, and not keeping them on a computer at all.) Hackers can also target Bitcoin exchanges, gaining access to thousands of accounts and digital wallets where bitcoins are stored. One especially notorious hacking incident took place in 2014, when Mt. Gox, a Bitcoin exchange in Japan, was forced to close down after millions of dollars worth of bitcoins were stolen.
This is particularly problematic once you remember that all Bitcoin transactions are permanent and irreversible. It's like dealing with cash: Any transaction carried out with bitcoins can only be reversed if the person who has received them refunds them. There is no third party or a payment processor, as in the case of a debit or credit card – hence, no source of protection or appeal if there is a problem.
Insurance Risk
Some investments are insured through the Securities Investor Protection Corporation. Normal bank accounts are insured through the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) up to a certain amount depending on the jurisdiction. Bitcoin exchanges and Bitcoin accounts are not insured by any type of federal or government program.
Risk of Bitcoin Fraud
While Bitcoin uses private key encryption to verify owners and register transactions, fraudsters and scammers may attempt to sell false bitcoins. For instance, in July 2013, the SEC brought legal action against an operator of a Bitcoin-related Ponzi scheme.
Market Risk
Like with any investment, Bitcoin values can fluctuate. Indeed, the value of the currency has seen wild swings in price over its short existence. Subject to high volume buying and selling on exchanges, it has a high sensitivity to “news." According to the CFPB, the price of bitcoins fell by 61% in a single day in 2013, while the one-day price drop in 2014 has been as big as 80%.
If fewer people begin to accept Bitcoin as a currency, these digital units may lose value and could become worthless. There is already plenty of competition, and though Bitcoin has a huge lead over the other 100-odd digital currencies that have sprung up, thanks to its brand recognition and venture capital money, a technological break-through in the form of a better virtual coin is always a threat.
Bitcoin's Tax Risk
As bitcoin is ineligible to be included in any tax-advantaged retirement accounts, there are no good, legal options to shield investments from taxation.
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Related Terms
The satoshi is the smallest unit of the bitcoin cryptocurrency. It is named after Satoshi Nakamoto, the creator of the protocol used in block chains and the bitcoin cryptocurrency.
Chartalism Chartalism is a non-mainstream theory of money that emphasizes the impact of government policies and activities on the value of money.
Satoshi Nakamoto The name used by the unknown creator of the protocol used in the bitcoin cryptocurrency. Satoshi Nakamoto is closely-associated with blockchain technology.
Bitcoin Mining, Explained Breaking down everything you need to know about Bitcoin Mining, from Blockchain and Block Rewards to Proof-of-Work and Mining Pools.
Understanding Bitcoin Unlimited Bitcoin Unlimited is a proposed upgrade to Bitcoin Core that allows larger block sizes. The upgrade is designed to improve transaction speed through scale.
Blockchain Explained
A guide to help you understand what blockchain is and how it can be used by industries. You've probably encountered a definition like this: “blockchain is a distributed, decentralized, public ledger." But blockchain is easier to understand than it sounds.
Top 6 Books to Learn About Bitcoin About UsAdvertiseContactPrivacy PolicyTerms of UseCareers Investopedia is part of the Dotdash publishing family.The Balance Lifewire TripSavvy The Spruceand more
By Satoshi Nakamoto
Read it once, go read other crypto stuff, read it again… keep doing this until the whole document makes sense. It’ll take a while, but you’ll get there. This is the original whitepaper introducing and explaining Bitcoin, and there’s really nothing better out there to understand on the subject.
“What is needed is an electronic payment system based on cryptographic proof instead of trust, allowing any two willing parties to transact directly with each other without the need for a trusted third party

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The 20-Second Trick For Bitcoin: What to know, when (or if) to invest in it - Fox Business Free Bitcoin 100% Tricks Working ️No Loss Only For Winning Just One Minutes Earn 0 .00000050 Bloomberg predicts Bitcoin to $20k!  Mining difficulty drops  Which Altcoins to watch The Difficulty of Mining Bitcoin Bitcoin blockchain records mining difficulty record

They drive the difficulty up by mining so much. If you want to play around with mining, I suggest a crypto with strong ASIC resistance (or low hash rate) so you have a chance of mining anything. Keep in mind that if it is profitable to mine a coin, more and more people will until the cost of mining equals the reward of mining and the average Bitcoin’s hash rate has tumbled about 40% on September 23, which is a record. The crash remains unexplained and surprising, given that the hash rate used to move upwards and update the record high again and again. This measure shows the mining difficulty, as the competition among BTC miners is increasing. The Bitcoin mining difficulty has seen its biggest upward move for over two years after warnings over BTC price selling pressure.According to data from on-chain monitoring resource on June 17, the latest difficulty adjustment saw difficulty increase by 14.95% – the most since January 2018. The increase tops previous automated predictions, which just days ago suggested an increase of Bitcoin mining difficulty is adjusted every couple of weeks to maintain network integrity. The difficulty level was revised downward by 7.4% in November and 15.1% in early December, the largest percentage drop since 2011. Revenue from bitcoin mining, meanwhile, has fallen by more than half from November, which explains why some miners couldn However, this rise in addresses managed to coincide with the $300 crash in Bitcoin’s price, with the market cap of the leading coin losing $4 billion over the past several hours.. Indicators Show the Start of a New Bearish Season. For the past two months, Bitcoin has exhibited a sideways trading pattern, although the recent pressure is in favor of the sellers.

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The 20-Second Trick For Bitcoin: What to know, when (or if) to invest in it - Fox Business

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