TIL the guy who created SkiFree, the classic Windows 3.1 game, maintains a page with downloads to binaries that work on modern operating systems, AND accepts tip jar donations in bitcoin if you scroll down to the bottom of the page
How Bitcoin’s Price Slump Is Changing the Geography of Mining
Unsplash Although China remains, by far, the leading region for bitcoin mining, the coronavirus downturn is changing the picture in other geographies. According to Thomas Heller, business director of one of the world’s largest bitcoin mining operations, F2Pool, market dips have made it unprofitable for some bitcoin (BTC) miners with older machines to operate. “We lost 10 percent of our bitcoin hashrate from our clients, for some of our competitors it was closer to 30 percent,” Heller said, referring predominately to miners across Asia and Europe. Mining operations in North America have also been impacted. Upstream Data founder Steve Barbour, who operates bitcoin mines on oil fields in Canada, said fewer companies are allocating resources to experiment with bitcoin, at least so far. “Pretty much every Canadian oil producer is basically telling their staff to do nothing and spend no money, and we’re a service provider for those companies,” Barbour said. “We were growing, month by month. This month is flat and I’m expecting next month to be down.” Read more Leigh Cuen, March 30, 2020 Coindesk
How Bitcoin’s Price Slump Is Changing the Geography of Mining
Although China remains, by far, the leading region for bitcoin mining, the coronavirus downturn is changing the picture in other geographies. According to Thomas Heller, business director of one of the world’s largest bitcoin mining operations, F2Pool, market dips have made it unprofitable for some bitcoin (BTC) miners with older machines to operate. “We lost 10 percent of our bitcoin hashrate from our clients, for some of our competitors it was closer to 30 percent,” Heller said, referring predominately to miners across Asia and Europe. Mining operations in North America have also been impacted. Upstream Data founder Steve Barbour, who operates bitcoin mines on oil fields in Canada, said fewer companies are allocating resources to experiment with bitcoin, at least so far. “Pretty much every Canadian oil producer is basically telling their staff to do nothing and spend no money, and we’re a service provider for those companies,” Barbour said. “We were growing, month by month. This month is flat and I’m expecting next month to be down.” Likewise, the California-based Digital Farms is closing up shop until the price of bitcoin resurges and makes mining more profitable.
TIL the guy who created SkiFree, the classic Windows 3.1 game, maintains a page with downloads to binaries that work on modern operating systems, AND accepts tip jar donations in bitcoin if you scroll down to the bottom of the page (x-post from /r/Bitcoin)
Hashing of the header alone has become a liability NOT a security guarantee, this is what we could do about it.
TL;DR The hashing of the block header alone has become a concentration of power that is against the original intent. We can fix it by showing that we will upgrade to and support an implementation that rewards more than just hashing the block header. What's wrong with the mining algorithm? There is nothing wrong with SHA256, it works very well and is proven. The problem is that only the block header needs to be hashed. Why is hashing only the block header a problem? It rewards mining pools and creates an incentive to hash faster but no incentives to host nodes containing the full block chain or nodes that are connected to the rest of the network. Outside of a 51% attack (which is a real problem), the drop in full nodes and the increased cost of all that network activity is centralizing Bitcoin to an alarming degree. What is the alternative? The bitcoin wiki contains several alternatives that core devs and others have listed over time. One of these is the idea that in addition to hashing the header, proof has to be provided that the entire block chain is being stored. I favour this solution as it is incredibly memory hard, uses proven SHA256, rewards storing the entire set of unspent inputs and above all; is simple. Specialist mining equipment would take much, much longer to develop and would have to contain full copies of the entire block chain to work. How would that work? Without getting to technical, the hashing process would be changed from SHA256(Header + Nonce) < Target to something like SHA256(UTXO[SHA256(Header + Nonce)%UTXO_Count] + Nonce) < Target How would we get there? This is by far the hardest part. People who operate Bitcoin nodes need to reach consensus that they want to change the mining algorithm to accept the new mining algorithm for newer blocks, correctly interpret the older blocks and reset the difficulty so that blocks can be mined in finite time. How can we reach consensus? We could have a weighted vote. Several solutions could be proposed. Then people can cast votes by signing their vote with their private key. Nodes can then decide what the will of Bitcoiners is and change their software based on how the most bitcoins voted. Edit: Note this is just what I prefer, mainly because it's simple. If anyone prefers another contingency please post it for discussion.
New bitcoin ATM type is available soon on the market
This is a new lighweight cryptocurrency ATM reminds a famous Skyhook, which is not supported anymore unfortunately. But this small box even better, according to creators - it will support everything, including bitshares, other alternative cryptocurrencies, etc. Announcement comes from Bitcoin42, who operate bitcoin ATM in Mexico. The difference of these guy's approach was that they introduced litecoin, dogecoin and blackcoin support on their machine. So looking forward what they will propose to the market. Could be a new best seller on the market. However, price is still not clear.
[uncensored-r/Bitcoin] Tether subpoena took place in Dec. still operates. Only those who panic sold are still spreading ...
The following post by YAKELO is being replicated because the post has been silently removed. The original post can be found(in censored form) at this link: np.reddit.com/ Bitcoin/comments/7u5ozi The original post's content was as follows:
The subpoena took place in December and tether have continued operating, nobody has stepped in, nobody has shut them down, nobody has leaked inside information revealing the money isn't there... nothing. Yet, people are still staying it's not backed, it's not a scam, it doesn't exist, etc.. People on /tether are even saying the government are in on it and just letting it happen. Those people just need to admit they want it to be a scam because they fell for the FUD and panic sold...
Putting $400M of Bitcoin on your company balance sheet
Also posted on my blog as usual. Read it there if you can, there are footnotes and inlined plots. A couple of months ago, MicroStrategy (MSTR) had a spare $400M of cash which it decided to shift to Bitcoin (BTC). Today we'll discuss in excrutiating detail why this is not a good idea. When a company has a pile of spare money it doesn't know what to do with, it'll normally do buybacks or start paying dividends. That gives the money back to the shareholders, and from an economic perspective the money can get better invested in other more promising companies. If you have a huge pile of of cash, you probably should be doing other things than leave it in a bank account to gather dust. However, this statement from MicroStrategy CEO Michael Saylor exists to make it clear he's buying into BTC for all the wrong reasons:
“This is not a speculation, nor is it a hedge. This was a deliberate corporate strategy to adopt a bitcoin standard.”
Let's unpack it and jump into the economics Bitcoin:
Is Bitcoin money?
No. Or rather BTC doesn't act as money and there's no serious future path for BTC to become a form of money. Let's go back to basics. There are 3 main economic problems money solves: 1. Medium of Exchange. Before money we had to barter, which led to the double coincidence of wants problem. When everyone accepts the same money you can buy something from someone even if they don't like the stuff you own. As a medium of exchange, BTC is not good. There are significant transaction fees and transaction waiting times built-in to BTC and these worsen the more popular BTC get. You can test BTC's usefulness as a medium of exchange for yourself right now: try to order a pizza or to buy a random item with BTC. How many additional hurdles do you have to go through? How many fewer options do you have than if you used a regular currency? How much overhead (time, fees) is there? 2. Unit of Account. A unit of account is what you compare the value of objects against. We denominate BTC in terms of how many USD they're worth, so BTC is a unit of account presently. We can say it's because of lack of adoption, but really it's also because the market value of BTC is so volatile. If I buy a $1000 table today or in 2017, it's roughly a $1000 table. We can't say that a 0.4BTC table was a 0.4BTC table in 2017. We'll expand on this in the next point: 3. Store of Value. When you create economic value, you don't want to be forced to use up the value you created right away. For instance, if I fix your washing machine and you pay me in avocados, I'd be annoyed. I'd have to consume my payment before it becomes brown, squishy and disgusting. Avocado fruit is not good money because avocadoes loses value very fast. On the other hand, well-run currencies like the USD, GBP, CAD, EUR, etc. all lose their value at a low and most importantly fairly predictible rate. Let's look at the chart of the USD against BTC While the dollar loses value at a predictible rate, BTC is all over the place, which is bad. One important use money is to write loan contracts. Loans are great. They let people spend now against their future potential earnings, so they can buy houses or start businesses without first saving up for a decade. Loans are good for the economy. If you want to sign something that says "I owe you this much for that much time" then you need to be able to roughly predict the value of the debt in at the point in time where it's due. Otherwise you'll have a hard time pricing the risk of the loan effectively. This means that you need to charge higher interests. The risk of making a loan in BTC needs to be priced into the interest of a BTC-denominated loan, which means much higher interest rates. High interests on loans are bad, because buying houses and starting businesses are good things.
BTC has a fixed supply, so these problems are built in
Some people think that going back to a standard where our money was denominated by a stock of gold (the Gold Standard) would solve economic problems. This is nonsense. Having control over supply of your currency is a good thing, as long as it's well run. See here Remember that what is desirable is low variance in the value, not the value itself. When there are wild fluctuations in value, it's hard for money to do its job well. Since the 1970s, the USD has been a fiat money with no intrinsic value. This means we control the supply of money. Let's look at a classic poorly drawn econ101 graph The market price for USD is where supply meets demand. The problem with a currency based on an item whose supply is fixed is that the price will necessarily fluctuate in response to changes in demand. Imagine, if you will, that a pandemic strikes and that the demand for currency takes a sharp drop. The US imports less, people don't buy anything anymore, etc. If you can't print money, you get deflation, which is worsens everything. On the other hand, if you can make the money printers go brrrr you can stabilize the price Having your currency be based on a fixed supply isn't just bad because in/deflation is hard to control. It's also a national security risk... The story of the guy who crashed gold prices in North Africa In the 1200s, Mansa Munsa, the emperor of the Mali, was rich and a devout Muslim and wanted everyone to know it. So he embarked on a pilgrimage to make it rain all the way to Mecca. He in fact made it rain so hard he increased the overall supply of gold and unintentionally crashed gold prices in Cairo by 20%, wreaking an economic havoc in North Africa that lasted a decade. This story is fun, the larger point that having your inflation be at the mercy of foreign nations is an undesirable attribute in any currency. The US likes to call some countries currency manipulators, but this problem would be serious under a gold standard.
Currencies are based on trust
Since the USD is based on nothing except the US government's word, how can we trust USD not to be mismanaged? The answer is that you can probably trust the fed until political stooges get put in place. Currently, the US's central bank managing the USD, the Federal Reserve (the Fed for friends & family), has administrative authority. The fed can say "no" to dumb requests from the president. People who have no idea what the fed does like to chant "audit the fed", but the fed is already one of the best audited US federal entities. The transcripts of all their meetings are out in the open. As is their balance sheet, what they plan to do and why. If the US should audit anything it's the Department of Defense which operates without any accounting at all. It's easy to see when a central bank will go rogue: it's when political yes-men are elected to the board. For example, before printing themselves into hyperinflation, the Venezuelan president appointed a sociologist who publicly stated “Inflation does not exist in real life” and instead is a made up capitalist lie. Note what happened mere months after his gaining control over the Venezuelan currency This is a key policy. One paper I really like, Sargent (1984) "The end of 4 big inflations" states:
The essential measures that ended hyperinflation in each of Germany,Austria, Hungary, and Poland were, first, the creation of an independentcentral bank that was legally committed to refuse the government'sdemand or additional unsecured credit and, second, a simultaneousalteration in the fiscal policy regime.
In english: *hyperinflation stops when the central bank can say "no" to the government." The US Fed, like other well good central banks, is run by a bunch of nerds. When it prints money, even as aggressively as it has it does so for good reasons. You can see why they started printing on March 15th as the COVID lockdowns started:
The Federal Reserve is prepared to use its full range of tools to support the flow of credit to households and businesses and thereby promote its maximum employment and price stability goals.
In english: We're going to keep printing and lowering rates until jobs are back and inflation is under control. If we print until the sun is blotted out, we'll print in the shade.
BTC is not gold
Gold is a good asset for doomsday-preppers. If society crashes, gold will still have value. How do we know that? Gold has held value throughout multiple historic catastrophes over thousands of years. It had value before and after the Bronze Age Collapse, the Fall of the Western Roman Empire and Gengis Khan being Gengis Khan. Even if you erased humanity and started over, the new humans would still find gold to be economically valuable. When Europeans d̶i̶s̶c̶o̶v̶e̶r̶e̶d̶ c̶o̶n̶q̶u̶e̶r̶e̶d̶ g̶e̶n̶o̶c̶i̶d̶e̶d̶ went to America, they found gold to be an important item over there too. This is about equivalent to finding humans on Alpha-Centauri and learning that they think gold is a good store of value as well. Some people are puzzled at this: we don't even use gold for much! But it has great properties: First, gold is hard to fake and impossible to manufacture. This makes it good to ascertain payment. Second, gold doesnt react to oxygen, so it doesn't rust or tarnish. So it keeps value over time unlike most other materials. Last, gold is pretty. This might sound frivolous, and you may not like it, but jewelry has actual value to humans. It's no coincidence if you look at a list of the wealthiest families, a large number of them trade in luxury goods. To paraphrase Veblen humans have a profound desire to signal social status, for the same reason peacocks have unwieldy tails. Gold is a great way to achieve that. On the other hand, BTC lacks all these attributes. Its value is largely based on common perception of value. There are a few fundamental drivers of demand:
Means of Exchange: if people seriously start using BTC to buy pizzas, then this creates a real demand for the currency to accomplish the short-term exchanges. As we saw previously, I'm not personally sold on this one and it's currently a negligible fraction of overall demand.
Criminal uses: Probably the largest inbuilt advantage of BTC is that it's anonymous, and so a great way to launder money. Hacker gangs use BTC to demand ransom on cryptolocker type attacks because it's a shared way for an honest company to pay and for the criminals to receive money without going to jail.
Apart from these, it's hard to argue that BTC will retain value throughout some sort of economic catastrophe.
BTC is really risky
One last statement from Michael Saylor I take offense to is this:
“We feel pretty confident that Bitcoin is less risky than holding cash, less risky than holding gold,” MicroStrategy CEO said in an interview
"BTC is less risky than holding cash or gold long term" is nonsense. We saw before that BTC is more volatile on face value, and that as long as the Fed isn't run by spider monkeys stacked in a trench coat, the inflation is likely to be within reasonable bounds. But on top of this, BTC has Abrupt downside risks that normal currencies don't. Let's imagine a few:
A critical software vulnerability is found in the BTC codebase, leading to a possible exploitation.
Xi Jinping decides he's had enough of rich people in China hiding their assets from him and bans BTC.
Some form of bank run takes hold for whatever reason. Because BTC wallets are uninsured, unlike regular banks, this compounds into a Black Tuesday style crash.
Blockchain solutions are fundamentally inefficient
Blockchain was a genius idea. I still marvel at the initial white paper which is a great mix of economics and computer science. That said, blockchain solutions make large tradeoffs in design because they assume almost no trust between parties. This leads to intentionally wasteful designs on a massive scale. The main problem is that all transactions have to be validated by expensive computational operations and double checked by multiple parties. This means waste:
BTC was estimated to use as much electricity as Belgium in 2019. It's hard to trace where the BTC mining comes from, but we can assume it has a huge carbon footprint.
A single transactions is necessarily expensive. A single transaction takes as much electricity as 800,000 VISA transactions, or watching 50,000 hours of youtube videos.
There is a large necessary tax on the transaction, since those checking the transaction extract a few BTC from it to be incentivized to do the work of checking it.
Many design problems can be mitigated by various improvements over BTC, but it remains that a simple database always works better than a blockchain if you can trust the parties to the transaction.
01-31 00:43 - 'Tether subpoena took place in Dec. still operates. Only those who panic sold are still spreading the FUD.' (self.Bitcoin) by /u/YAKELO removed from /r/Bitcoin within 13-23min
''' The subpoena took place in December and tether have continued operating, nobody has stepped in, nobody has shut them down, nobody has leaked inside information revealing the money isn't there... nothing. Yet, people are still staying it's not backed, it's not a scam, it doesn't exist, etc.. People on /tether are even saying the government are in on it and just letting it happen. Those people just need to admit they want it to be a scam because they fell for the FUD and panic sold... That, or the tinfoil hat is truly attached to their heads... In which case if the above applies to you then while you're here I've got some other subreddits for you that you'll probably enjoy. /911truth /moonhoax/ Expecting a lot of down votes ''' Tether subpoena took place in Dec. still operates. Only those who panic sold are still spreading the FUD. Go1dfish undelete link unreddit undelete link Author: YAKELO
@splcenter: Members of the so-called 'alt-right' who have been banned from mainstream payment services such as PayPal use Bitcoin to operate on the internet, even when they're under investigation. https://t.co/MTVBGd1cUZ
12-22 03:22 - 'It's happening because you're a 17 year old who's got pornhub open in one tab and coinbase in the other. You don't have two shits of a clue what the fuck blockchain even is or how it operates. Keep your mouth shut, do your resea...' by /u/multisp removed from /r/Bitcoin within 2-12min
''' It's happening because you're a 17 year old who's got pornhub open in one tab and coinbase in the other. You don't have two shits of a clue what the fuck blockchain even is or how it operates. Keep your mouth shut, do your research, and suck my fucking cock. Bitch. ''' Context Link Go1dfish undelete link unreddit undelete link Author: multisp
05-24 21:22 - 'GladiaCoin is composed of a group of highly specialized professionals from all over the world who operate a large volume of bitcoins trading daily. / Now this group of people has decided to expand its activities and, for this...' by /u/TeamMicro removed from /r/Bitcoin within 0-6min
''' GladiaCoin is composed of a group of highly specialized professionals from all over the world who operate a large volume of bitcoins trading daily. Now this group of people has decided to expand its activities and, for this, it needs a bigger volume of bitcoins to maximize its gains. Therefore, it is only fair that these profits be divided among the people who contribute to this expansion. In this way, part of this profit is divided among all people thus ensuring the contracted plan value doubles in 90 days! If interested visit the link below to become a member: [link]1 I'm not soliciting I Just want to share the wealth I have made my self I started with half a bitcoin January 7 of this year Today I make 4 Bitcoins daily. I have 20 registered affiliates who to day are making more than me and have invested more than myself. Bitcoin is the new thing we went from batter to digital crypto currencies under 200 years lets think a little. I invested in Gladiacoin for the fact that I would make in 45 days more profit than what any bank would pay for may savings account, That was my reason. ''' Context Link Go1dfish undelete link unreddit undelete link Author: TeamMicro 1: www.gladia*oin.*o***eamM**ro Unknown links are censored to prevent spreading illicit content.
"I did a survey last week asking who's transitioning to the original Bitcoin address format on SV. All the high quality wallets exclusively operating on SV like @money_button, @handcashapp, @Centbee have responded they are."
If all node operators and users who want to see SegWit activated on Bitcoin supported the BIP148 UASF they would have SegWit on August 1st - and the Scaling benefits it offers.
Not in a year's time or even further out in to the future - but by August 1st this year. EDIT 2: As u/-johoe pointed out and to clarify - On August 1st the BIP activates to reject blocks that do not signal SegWit in order to reach the activation goal of the original SegWit deployment. Removed reference to SegWit itself activating on August 1st to avoid confusion. Why shouldn't a change such as SegWit - that is accepted by the majority of users within Bitcoin's Peer-to-Peer, distributed network - not be activated by the User Acceptance of those Peers when... 83% of nodes support SegWit. 87% of businesses support or are prepared for SegWit. They could all have SegWit if they supported a UASF through BIP148 - Mandatory activation of SegWit deployment. If you want SegWit to activate on Bitcoin please signal support for a UASF. EDIT: There seems to be a lot of comments about the SegWit+2MB proposal that suddenly sprang up today in response to recent UASF posts this week. In relation to that proposal compared to a SegWit UASF on August 1st: A UASF is a consensus driven approach to activating changes in Bitcoin. What's wrong with letting SegWit double the block size first, observing how the network is affected and then deciding what to do at a later date - why agree to something now that might be completely unwarranted a year down the line? 12 months to develop, review and test the technical details of the SegWit+2MB's Hard Fork proposal and then deploy it is too short a timescale for it to be done safely. Have people voicing support for the SegWit+2MB 'compromise' even seen the technical details of it? SegWit as it is now has been thoroughly reviewed, tested and is even live on some alt-coins. It is ready to go now and we could have it by a User Accepted Soft Fork.
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News: Hacker Operates Bitcoin Core on Nintendo Switch
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