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Bitcoin Full Node: I repurposed some gaming computer parts and built a full node. (With Pics.)
I've been buying some Bitcoin lately and was interested in building a full node so I repurposed some old gaming computer parts that I had lying around. Here's the computer specifications and costs of new parts:
**Intel i5-6500k CPU-** A 4 core CPU that was a good gaming CPU back in its day. (Repurposed)
** Zalman CNPS9900MAX-B CPU Cooler - ** Cooler that was on the CPU/Motherboard when it was used for gaming. (Repurposed)
**MSI Z170A Gaming M5 Motherboard -** A good gaming and overclocking motherboard. (Repurposed)
**16GB G Skill 2400MHz RAM -** Great RAM for gaming and very fast at the time. (Repurposed)
**XFX 550w Power Supply (Gold) -** Rock solid power supply. (Repurposed.)
**Phanteks Eclipse 300A Computer Case -** Good quality case. $59.99 @ Amazon
**Sandisk SSD Plus 1TB Internal SSD -** Good quality SSD with room to grow with the Bitcoin network. $99.99 @ Amazon
**Windows 10 OS Key -** Couldn't find the original key that went with the motherboard. $34.99 @ Kinguin.net
Cost of new parts for this computer: $235.00 USD My observations: This computer is way overkill for a Bitcoin Full Node but works really great! I was unsure of what was really required for a computer to run a full node but after having this computer up and running for a few days I have a much better understanding. It hardly uses the CPU at all. I think that this is why you can run a full node on a Raspberry PI. The CPU on this computer typically runs at less than 5% utilization and more like 2%. It is basically sitting at idle all the time. I upped the data cache memory available in the Bitcoin GUI (Don't really know if this works or not?) to 5000 MB. The most RAM that I have used in several days of running has been less than 4 GB. (4000 MB) Once you get it up and running you need to open port 8333 on your router or it won't allow other computers to connect to you. Once you have port 8333 open, 20 computers will be able to connect to you and you will be able to connect to 10. There is very little documentation in how to do this (No step by step.) because all routers are slightly different and use slightly different terminology. It is not really that difficult. What you really want to do is called "port forwarding" and you want to find those settings in your router and port forward port 8333 in both directions. (Hope that made some sense. I'm not very good with networks!) My WiFi network and the connection to this computer is fast. I pay for 400 Mbps down and 20 Mbps up and I have a WiFi 6 router and a WiFi 6 adapter card in this computer. Speedtest says that this computer is connected at 380 Mbps down and 20 Mbps up. I'm about 40 feet away from the router. The Bitcoin Full Node is always transferring data on the network. It seems to be in small packets/batches but it is always sending or receiving or both. It doesn't use much bandwidth at one time so shouldn't cause lag on your network. In my case it typically stays under 500 Kbps but will on occasion spike briefly to 2000 Kbps (2 Mbps). I was very curious as to how much electricity this computer would use so that I could determine if I could afford to leave it on 24/7 or not. I plugged the computer into a watt meter that you can see in the pics. The computer swings between 32 and 35 watts while up and running on the Bitcoin network. This is like idle speed for this computer IMHO. 35 watts running 24 hours = 840 watt hours 840 watt hours X 30 days = 25200 watt hours or 25.2 Kwhs (Kilowatt hours is how you are charged by your utility) My utility charges $.12 per kilowatt hour so... 25.2 Kwh X $.12 = $3.03 USD per month. I hope I can afford that! Here's some pics: Bitcoin Full Node from Repurposed Parts
I earned about 4000% more btc with my android tablet than with a $250 ASIC mini rig setup using GekkoScience Newpac USB miners!
Requirements: 1.) Android Device with access to Google Play Store. *I haven't tried yet but you may be able to use tis on Android TV devces as well by sideloading. If anyone has success before I try, let me know! -Note, I did this with a Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 so its a newer more powerful device. If your android is older, your profts will most likely be less than what I earned but to give a projected range I also tested on my Raspberry Pi 4 running a custom LineageOS rom that doesn't allow the OS to make full use of the Pi's specs and I still got 500 h/s on that with Cloud boost, so about 60% of what my Tab 6 with MUCH Higher Specs does. **Hey guys. Before I get started i just wanted to be clear about one thing. Yes I have seen those scammy posts sharing "miracle" boosts and fixes. I have a hard time believing stuff online anymore. But this is honestly real. Ill attach photos and explain the whole story and process below. Thanks for taking the time to read and feel free to share any thoughts, concerns, tips, etc* So last week I finally got started with my first mini rig type mining build. I started getting into crypto about a year ago and it has taken me a long time to even grasp half of the projects out there but its been fun thus far! Anyways my rig was 2 GekkoScience Newpac USB miners, a Moonlander USB miner to pair with an FPGA i already had mining, a 10 port 60W 3.0 USB hub and 2 usb fans. The Newpacs actually are hashing at a combined 280 g/s which is actually better than their reported max hash rate when overclocked. Pleasant surpise and they are simple!! I just wanted to get a moonlander because my fpga already mines on Odocrypt for DGB and I just wanted to experience Scrypt mining and help build the DGB project. The Newpacs are mining BTC though. After I got everything up and running i checked my payout daily average after 1 week. I averaged .01 a day TOTAL between all three miners with them all perforing ABOVE SPEC!!! I had done research so i knew I wouldnt earn much. More than anything i just wanted to learn. But still. I was kinda surprised in a negative way. Yesterday I actually earned less than .01 Frustrated I went back to scouring the web for new ideas. About a year ago, when II was starting, I saw an app on my iphone called CryptoBrowser that claimed to mine btc on your phone without actually using phone resources using a method of cloud mining. I tried it for a week and quit because I earned like .03 after a ton of use and seemed scammy. Plus my iphone actually would get very hot when doing this so I quit using it as it seemed like a possible scam with all the cryptonight browser mining hacks and malware out there. Anyways I was on my Galaxy Tab S6 and saw that CryptoBrowser released a "PRO" edition for 3.99 on Google Play. I bought it for Sh*ts and giggles and booted it up. It came with what they called "Cloud Boost" Essentially this is a button you press and it multiplys the estimated hashrate that it gives you device by the number shown on the boost button. (With the purchase of PRO you get one free x10 boost. You can purchase additional boosts to use with other android devices but those are actually pretty pricy. Another x10 boost was like $25 if i remember correctly). I played with it for about an hour to see if it actually worked like it said it would this time. To my surprise, as i was browsing, my device didnt increase in temperature AT ALL!!!!! I checked my tast manager to confirm and it was indeed true, my memory and usage barely went up. it was giving me an estimated range of 80-105 on the hashrate. Once i pushed the x10 boost button, that went to 800-1150 h/s. I switched my screen to not go to sleep, plugged it to the charge and let it run on the browser page, hashing. When you push the boost button, it runs for 3 hours at the boosted speeds. After that it goes back to normal but if you press the button again, it boosts everything again. There is no limit to how many times you use it. After checking what I earned after 24 hours, I HAD MADE .40 in BTC!!!!! I JUST EARNED OVER 4000% MORE THAN MY $280 MINING RIG EARNED ME!!!! I was blown away. Maybe this was a fluke? I did it again next day. Every 3 hours or so I would push the button again but thats all. Sure enough, .35 that day. Also, it realy BTC. I requested a payout and although it took like 12 hours for them to send me an email stating they had just sent it, I actually did recieve the state amount of BTC within 24 hours in my personal wallet. The fees to send are SUPER LOW!. Like .01 Below I will list the steps I took, along with an explanation of thier "Mining" process on Androids. Reminder, this ONLY WORKS ON ANDROIDS. Also DO NOT use cryptobrowser on a physcal laptop or desktop. I ran it on an old laptop for three days last year and it fried it. It does actually use your hardware on those platforms to mine and it is not efficnet at all as I suspect they prob steal over half of your power for themselves using the REAL RandomX protocol via browser mining which is EXTREMELY INEFFICIENT DONT TRY IT!! -----How To Do This Yourself: Cryptotab Browser states the program works on Android devices by estimating what it thinks the hashrate would be for your device specs and siimulates what you would mine in a remote server however you still earn that estimated coin amount. It is not a SHA-256 process or coin that they say is mining, rather it is XMR and they swap that and pay it out to you in BTC Bitcoin. However I know damn well my Tab S6 doesnt hash 80-105 h/s on RandomX because I have done it with a moodified XMRig module i ported to Android. I got 5 h/s a sec if I was getting any hashes at all. But thats besides the point as I still was making money. Now, when you press that cloud boost button it immediately boosts that hash rate it estimates by the number on the cloud boost. As stated above, you can purchase more boosts and gift them or use them on extra android devices that you may have. Again, they are pricey so I'm not doing that plus it would just mean that I have another device that I have to leave on and open. The boosts come in x2, x4, x6, x8 and x10 variants. Again, they have unlimited uses. Here is the link to grab yourself CryptoBrowser Pro from CryptoTab. This IS A REFERRAL LINK! This is where I benefit from doing tis tutorial. Like i said, I want to be transparent as this is not a scam but I'm also not doing this out of the love of my heart. Their referral system works in that people that use the donwload the app using your link are your stage 1 referrals. Anytime they are mining, you earn a 15% bonus. So say they mine $.30 one day. You would get paid out an additional $.045 in your own balance (it does not come out of the referred user balance fyi so no worries). Then lets say that referred miner also gets their own referrals. I would get a 10% bonus on whatever THOSE people mine. This goes on and on for like 8 tiers. Each tier the bonus percntage essential halves. So again, I stand to benefit from this but it also is stupid to not make this visible as its WAY CHEAPER, EASIER AND MORE PROFITABLE TO GET BTC USING THIS METHOD THAN IT IS USING ASICS!! THIS EARNS ALMOST AS MUCH BTC AS AN ANTMINER S7 DOES RUNNING 24/7 ONLY WITHOUT THE HUGE ELLECTRICTY BILL AND COSTS!!!!) Thats it. Again, if you have concerns, let me know or if you have suggestions, other tips, etc... mention those as well!!! https://cryptotabbrowser.com/8557319 Links to Picture Proof http://imgur.com/gallery/P13bEsB
How much would a Bitcoin node handling 1GB blocks cost today? I did some back-on-the-envelope calculations.
1GB blocks would be able to confirm more than 5000tx/s. That would be VISA-level scale (which handles, on average, 1736tx/s). We often hear that we shouldn't raise the blocksize because then nodes would become too expensive to run. But how expensive exactly? We have the following costs to take into account:
For now, I'm going to assume a non-pruned full node (i.e. a node that stores all transactions of the blockchain) for personal use, i.e. for a computer built at home. I'll add in the calculations for a pruned node at the end, which would likely be the prefered option for people who merely want to verify the blockchain for themselves. If you don't care about the assumptions and calculations, you can just jump right to the end of this post. If you spotted any error, please inform me and I'll update my calculation.
There's, on average, one block every 10 minutes, that is 144 every day and 4320 blocks every thirty days. I was able to find a 3TB HDD for $47,50 on Amazon, that is $0.018/GB. Storing all blocks with all transactions of a month (4320GB) would be $78.96/mo. Prices for storage halved from 2014 to 2017, so we can assume that to half in 2022, thus we can reasonably assume it'd cost around $40/mo. in 2022. But would such an inexpensive hard disk be able to keep up with writing all the data? I found a comparable cheap HDD which can write 127MB/s sequentially (which would be the writing mode of Bitcoin). That would be enough even for 76GB blocks! Edit: For the UTXO set, we need very fast storage for both reading and writing. Peter__R, in his comment below, estimates this to be 1TB for 4 billion users (which would make ~46,000tx/s if everyone would make 1tx/day, so id'd require about 10GB blocks). jtoomim seems more pessimistic on that front, he says that much of that has to be in RAM. I'll add the $315 I've calculated below to account for that (which would be rather optimistic, keep in mind).
Bandwidth is more complicated, because that can't just be shipped around like HDDs. I'll just take prices for my country, Germany, using the provider T-online, because I don't know how it works in the US. You can plug in your own numbers based on the calculations below. 1GB blocks/10 minute mean 1.7MB/s. However, this is an average, and we need some wiggle room for transaction spikes, for example at Christmas or Black Friday. VISA handles 150 million transactions per day, that is 1736tx/s, but can handle up to 24,000tx/s (source). So we should be able to handle 13.8x the average throughput, which would be 1.7MB/s x 13.8 = 23.46M/s, or 187.68Mbit/s. The plan on T-online for 250Mbit/s (translated) would be 54.95€/mo (plus setup minus a discount for the first 6 months which seems to cancel out so we'll ignore it), which would be $61.78/mo. This plan is an actual flatrate, so we don't have to worry about hitting any download limit. Note, however, that we don't order bandwidth for only our Bitcoin node, but also for personal use. If we only needed 2MB/s for personal use, the plan would be 34.95€, thus our node would actually only cost the difference of 20€ per month, or $22.50/mo. Nielsen's Law of Internet Bandwidth claims that a high-end user's connection speed grows by 50% per year. If we assume this is true for pricing too, the bandwidth cost for ~200Mbit/s/mo. would go down to 12.5% (forgot how exponential growth works)29.6% of its today's cost by 2022, which decreases our number to $2.81/mo.$6.66/mo. Edit: jtoomim, markblundeberg and CaptainPatent point out that the node would have a much higher bandwidth for announcing transactions and uploading historical blocks. In theory, it would not be necessary to do any of those things and still be able to verify one's own transactions, by never broadcasting any transactions. That would be quite leechy behaviour, though. If we were to pick a higher data plan to get 1000MBit/s downstream and 500MBit/s upstream, it would cost 119.95€/mo., however this plan isn't widely available yet (both links in German). 500MBit/s of upstream would give us max. 21 connected nodes at transaction spikes, or max. 294 connected nodes at average load. That would cost $39.85 in 2022 (with correct exponential growth).
CPU/Memory will be bought once and can then run for tens of years, so we'll count these as setup costs. The specs needed, of course, depend on the optimization of the node software, but we'll assume the current bottlenecks will have been removed once running a node actually becomes demanding hardware-wise. This paper establishes that a 2.4GHz Intel Westmere (Xeon E5620) CPU can verify 71000 signatures per second... which can be bought for $32.88 a pair on Ebay (note: this CPU is from Q1'10). We'd need to verify 76659tx/s at spikes (taking the 13.8x number), so that pair of CPUs (handle 142,000tx/s) seem to just fit right in (given one signature per tx). We'd also have to account for multiple signatures per transaction and all the other parts of verification of transactions, but it seems like the CPU costs are neglegible anyway if we don't buy the freshest hardware available. ~$100 at current prices seem reasonable. Given Moore's Law, we can assume that prices for CPUs half every two years (transistor count x1.4162), so in three years, the CPU(s) should cost around $35.22 ($100/1.4163). For memory, we again have to take into account the transaction spikes. If we're very unlucky, and transactions spike and there won't be a block for ~1h, the mempool can become very large. If we take the factor of 13.8x from above, and 1h of unconfirmed transactions (20,000,000tx usually, 276,000,000tx on spikes), we'd need 82.8GB (for 300B per transaction). I found 32GB of RAM (with ECC) for $106, so three of those give us 96GB of RAM for $318 and plenty remaining space for building hash trees, connection management and the operating system. Buying used hardware doesn't seem to decrease the cost significantly (we actually do need a lot of RAM, compared to CPU power). Price of RAM seems to decrease by a factor of x100 every 10 years (x1.58510), so we can expect 96GB to cost around $79.89 ($318/1.5853) in 2022. Of course, CPU and memory need to be compatible, which I haven't taken into account. Chug a mainboard (~$150) and a power supply (~$50) into the mix, and the total would be just over $600 for today's prices. Even if mainboard and power supply prices remain the same, we'd still only have to pay around $315 for the whole setup in 2022.
I found a comparable harddrive with 6W. We need N*6W, where N is the number of hardrives (17.28 per year).
Edit: We also need fast memory for the UTXO set, so we'll take some 3x NVMe SSDs for that (see below), which require 18.6W in total.
So we'd have 129W147.6W + N*6W. Electricity cost average at 12ct/kWh in the US, in Germany this is higher at 30.22ct/kWh. In the US, it would cost $11.14$12.75 + N*$0.52 (P*12ct/kWh / 1000 * 24h/day *30days / 100ct/$), in Germany 28.06€32.11€ + N*1.30€. At the end of the first year, it would cost $20.12$21.73/mo. in the US and 50.52€54.57€/mo. in Germany. At the end of the second year, it would cost $29.11$30.72/mo. for the US and 72.98€77.03€/mo. for Germany. It increases by $8.98/mo. per year in the US and by 22.46€/mo. per year in Germany. Electricity prices in Germany have increased over time due to increased taxation; in the US the price increase has been below inflation rate the last two decades. As it's difficult to predict price changes here, I'm going to assume prices will remain the same.
In summary, we get:
Storage: $78.96/mo., $40/mo in 2022, (E:) +$315 initially for NVMe SSDs
Bandwidth: $22.50/mo., $2.81/mo. $6.66/mo. in 2022, Edit: or $95.37/mo. for additional broadcasting, or $28.25/mo. in 2022 prices.
If we add everything up, for today's prices, we get (E: updated all following numbers, but only changed slightly) $132/mo. (US), $187/mo. (DE) for the second year and $71.92/mo. $78/mo. (US), $115.79/mo.$124/mo. (DE) in 2022. It definitely is quite a bit of money, but consider what that machine would actually do; it would basically do the equivalent of VISA's payment verification multiple times over, which is an amazing feat. Also, piano lessons cost around $50-$100 each, so if we consider a Bitcoin hobbyist, he would still pay much less for his hobby than a piano player, who'd pay about $400 per month. So it's entirely reasonable to assume that even if we had 1GB blocks, there would still be lots of people running full-nodes just so. How about pruned nodes? Here, we only have to store the Unspent Transaction Output Set (UTXO set), which currently clocks in at 2.8GB. If blocks get 1000 times bigger, we can assume the UTXO set to become 2.8TB. I'll assume ordinary HDD's aren't goint to cut it for reading/writing the UTXO set at that scale, so we'll take some NVMe SSDs for that, currently priced at $105/TB. Three of them would increase our setup by $315 to$915, but decrease our monthly costs. E: However this UTXO set is also required for the non-pruned node, therefore the setup costs stay at $915. Even in the highest power state, the 3 SSDs will need only 18.6W in total, so we'll get a constant 147.6W for the whole system. In total, this is:
New Storage: $0/mo.
Bandwidth: $22.50/mo., (E:) $6.66/mo. in 2022, Edit: or $95.37/mo. for additional broadcasting, or $28.25/mo. in 2022 prices. (same as above)
Electricity: $12.75/mo. (US), 32.11€/mo. (DE)
CPU: Initially $915
In total, this is $35.25/mo. in the US and $58.57/mo. in Germany for today's prices, or (E:) $19.41/mo. (US) and (E:) $42.73/mo. (DE) in 2022's prices. Which looks very affordable even for a non-hobbyist. E: spelling E²: I've added the 3 NVEe SSDs for the UTXO set, as pointed out by others and fixed an error with exponentials, as I figured out.
April Fools 2018 Megathread - Pranks from developers and publishers
The new banner (Yennefer of Vengerberg from The Witcher 3) [was] here for April Fools. You can find the joke submissions from users and moderators here. April 1st is the time for devs and publishers to prank the oblivious and get laughs from those who are in on the joke. Here's a compilation:
Transcript of Open Developer Meeting in Discord - 7/19/2019
[Dev-Happy] BlondfrogsLast Friday at 3:58 PM Hey everyone. The channel is now open for the dev meeting. LSJI07 - MBITLast Friday at 3:58 PM Hi TronLast Friday at 3:59 PM Hi all! JerozLast Friday at 3:59 PM :wave: TronLast Friday at 3:59 PM Topics: Algo stuff - x22rc, Ownership token for Restricted Assets and Assets. JerozLast Friday at 4:00 PM @Milo is also here from coinrequest. MiloLast Friday at 4:00 PM Hi :thumbsup: Pho3nix Monk3yLast Friday at 4:00 PM welcome, @Milo TronLast Friday at 4:00 PM Great. @Milo Was there PRs for Android and iOS? MiloLast Friday at 4:01 PM Yes, I've made a video. Give me a second I'll share it asap. JerozLast Friday at 4:02 PM I missed the iOS one. MiloLast Friday at 4:02 PM Well its 1 video, but meant for all. JerozLast Friday at 4:02 PM Ah, there's an issue but no pull request (yet?) https://github.com/RavenProject/ravenwallet-ios/issues/115 [Dev-Happy] BlondfrogsLast Friday at 4:03 PM nice @Milo MiloLast Friday at 4:04 PM Can it be that I have no video post rights? JerozLast Friday at 4:05 PM In discord? MiloLast Friday at 4:05 PM yes? [Dev-Happy] BlondfrogsLast Friday at 4:05 PM just a link? JerozLast Friday at 4:05 PM Standard version has a file limit afaik Pho3nix Monk3yLast Friday at 4:05 PM try now gave permissions MiloLast Friday at 4:05 PM it's not published yet on Youtube, since I didn't knew when it would be published in the wallets file too big. Hold on i'll put it on youtube and set it on private LSJI07 - MBITLast Friday at 4:06 PM no worries ipfs it...:yum: Pho3nix Monk3yLast Friday at 4:06 PM ok, just send link when you can [Dev-Happy] BlondfrogsLast Friday at 4:07 PM So guys. We released Ravencoin v2.4.0! JerozLast Friday at 4:08 PM If you like the code. Go update them nodes! :smiley: [Dev-Happy] BlondfrogsLast Friday at 4:08 PM We are recommending that you are upgrading to it. It fixes a couple bugs in the code base inherited from bitcoin! MiloLast Friday at 4:08 PM https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t\_g7NpFXm6g&feature=youtu.be sorry for the hold up YouTube Coin Request Raven dev Gemiddeld LSJI07 - MBITLast Friday at 4:09 PM thanks short and sweet!! KAwARLast Friday at 4:10 PM Is coin request live on the android wallet? TronLast Friday at 4:10 PM Nice video. It isn't in the Play Store yet. Pho3nix Monk3yLast Friday at 4:10 PM Well, this is the first time in a while where we have this many devs online. What questions do y'all have? LSJI07 - MBITLast Friday at 4:11 PM Algo questions? Pho3nix Monk3yLast Friday at 4:11 PM sure KAwARLast Friday at 4:11 PM KK LSJI07 - MBITLast Friday at 4:12 PM what are the proposed 22 algos in x22r? i could only find the original 16 plus 5 on x21. TronLast Friday at 4:12 PM Likely the 5 from x21 and find one more. We need to make sure they're all similar in time profile. liqdmetalLast Friday at 4:14 PM should we bother fixing a asic-problem that we dont know exists for sure or not? TronLast Friday at 4:14 PM That's the 170 million dollar question. [Dev-Happy] BlondfrogsLast Friday at 4:14 PM I would prefer to be proactive not reactive. imo JerozLast Friday at 4:14 PM same LSJI07 - MBITLast Friday at 4:15 PM RIPEMD160 is a golden oldie but not sure on hash speed compared to the others. liqdmetalLast Friday at 4:15 PM in my mind we should focus on the restricted messaging etc Sevvy (y rvn pmp?)Last Friday at 4:15 PM probably won't know if the action was needed until after you take the action liqdmetalLast Friday at 4:15 PM we are at risk of being interventionistas acting under opacity TronLast Friday at 4:15 PM Needs to spit out at least 256 bit. Preferably 512 bit. LSJI07 - MBITLast Friday at 4:15 PM ok TronLast Friday at 4:15 PM If it isn't 512 bit, it'll cause some extra headache for the GPU mining software. liqdmetalLast Friday at 4:16 PM i seek to avoid iatrogenics TronLast Friday at 4:16 PM Similar to the early problems when all the algos except the first one were built for 64-bytes (512-bit) inputs. Had to look that one up. TIL iatrogenics JerozLast Friday at 4:17 PM I have to google most of @liqdmetal's vocabulary :smile: liqdmetalLast Friday at 4:17 PM @Tron tldr: basically the unseen, unintended negative side effects of the asic "cure" Sevvy (y rvn pmp?)Last Friday at 4:18 PM 10 dolla word liqdmetalLast Friday at 4:19 PM we need a really strong case to intervene in what has been created. TronLast Friday at 4:19 PM I agree. I'm less concerned with the technical risk than I am the potential split risk experienced multiple times by Monero. Sevvy (y rvn pmp?)Last Friday at 4:20 PM tron do you agree that forking the ravencoin chain presents unique risks compared to other chains that aren't hosting assets? JerozLast Friday at 4:21 PM Yes, if you fork, you need to figure out for each asset which one you want to support. Sevvy (y rvn pmp?)Last Friday at 4:21 PM yeah. and the asset issuer could have a chain preference TronLast Friday at 4:22 PM @Sevvy (y rvn pmp?) Sure. Although, I'd expect that the asset issuers will be honor the assets on the dominant chain. Bigger concern is the branding confusion of multiple forks. See Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Bitcoin SV for an example. We know they're different, but do non-crypto folks? Hans_SchmidtLast Friday at 4:22 PM I thought that the take-away from the recently published analyses and discussions was that ASICs for RVN may be active, but if so then they are being not much more effective than GPUs. Sevvy (y rvn pmp?)Last Friday at 4:22 PM agreed on all accounts there tron TronLast Friday at 4:23 PM I'm not yet convinced ASICs are on the network. KAwARLast Friday at 4:23 PM It would be better to damage an asic builder by forking after they made major expenses. Creating for them the type of deficit that could be negated by just buying instead of mining. Asic existence should be 100 percent confirmed before fork. liqdmetalLast Friday at 4:23 PM 170million dollar question is right.lol TronLast Friday at 4:24 PM I've had someone offer to connect me to the folks at Fusion Silicon. Sevvy (y rvn pmp?)Last Friday at 4:25 PM yes. and if they are active on the network they are not particularly good ASICs which makes it a moot point probably TronLast Friday at 4:26 PM The difficult part of this problem is that by the time everyone agrees that ASICs are problematic on the network, then voting the option in is likely no longer an option. Sevvy (y rvn pmp?)Last Friday at 4:26 PM yes. part of me wonders if we would say "okay, the clock on the asic countdown is reset by this new algo. but now the race is on" [Dev-Happy] BlondfrogsLast Friday at 4:26 PM There are always risks when making a change that will fork the network. We want wait to long though, as tron said. It wont be a voting change. it will be a mandatory change at a block number. Sevvy (y rvn pmp?)Last Friday at 4:26 PM acknowledge the inevitable MiloLast Friday at 4:27 PM I had just a small question from my side. When do you think the android version would be published, and do you maybe have a time-frame for the others? TronLast Friday at 4:27 PM Quick poll. How would everyone here feel about a BIP9 option - separate from the new features that can be voted in? KAwARLast Friday at 4:27 PM Maybe voting should not be a strictly blockchain vote. A republic and a democratic voice? [Dev-Happy] BlondfrogsLast Friday at 4:27 PM @Milo We can try and get a beta out next week, and publish soon after that. MiloLast Friday at 4:28 PM @[Dev-Happy] Blondfrogs :thumbsup::slight_smile: [Dev-Happy] BlondfrogsLast Friday at 4:28 PM BIP9 preemptive vote. I like it. TronLast Friday at 4:30 PM The advantage to a BIP9 vote is that it puts the miners and mining pools at a clear majority before activation. LSJI07 - MBITLast Friday at 4:30 PM Centralisation is inevitable unless we decide to resist it. ASIC's are market based and know the risks and rewards possible. A key step in resisting is sending a message. An algo change to increase asic resistance is imho a strong message. A BIP9 vote now would also be an indicator of bad actors early.... TronLast Friday at 4:30 PM The disadvantage is that it may not pass if the will isn't there. LSJI07 - MBITLast Friday at 4:30 PM Before assets are on main net and cause additional issues. KAwARLast Friday at 4:31 PM I am not schooled in coding to have an educated voice. I only understand social problems and how it affects the economy. SpyderDevLast Friday at 4:31 PM All are equal on RVN TronLast Friday at 4:31 PM It is primarily a social problem. The tech change is less risky and is easier than the social. LSJI07 - MBITLast Friday at 4:32 PM All can have a share....people who want more of a share however pay for the privilege and associated risks. KAwARLast Friday at 4:33 PM Assets and exchange listings need to be consistent and secure. brutoidLast Friday at 4:36 PM I'm still not entirely clear on what the overall goal to the algo change is? Is it just to brick the supposed ASICs (unknown 45%) which could still be FPGAs as seen from the recent block analysis posted in the nest. Is the goal to never let ASICs on? Is it to brick FPGAs ultimately. Are we making Raven strictly GPU only? I'm still unclear LSJI07 - MBITLast Friday at 4:37 PM What about the future issue of ASICs returning after a BIP9 fork "soon"? Are all following the WP as a community? i.e asic resistant or are we prepared to change that to asic resistant for early coin emission. Ideally we should plan for the future. Could the community make a statement that no future algo changes will be required to incentivise future public asic manufacturers? Lol. Same question @brutoid brutoidLast Friday at 4:37 PM Haha it is You mind-beamed me! [Dev-Happy] BlondfrogsLast Friday at 4:38 PM The is up to the community. Currently, the feel seems like the community is anti asic forever. The main issue is getting people to upgrade. KAwARLast Friday at 4:38 PM Clarity is important. Otherwise we are attacking windmills like Don Quixote. brutoidLast Friday at 4:39 PM I'm not getting the feeling of community ASIC hate if the last few weeks of discussion are anything to go by? Hans_SchmidtLast Friday at 4:39 PM A unilateral non-BIP9 change at a chosen block height is a serious thing, but anti-ASIC has been part of the RVN philosophy since the whitepaper and is therefore appropriate for that purpose. [Dev-Happy] BlondfrogsLast Friday at 4:39 PM We can use the latest release as an example. It was a non forking release, announced for 2 weeks. and only ~30% of the network has upgraded. TronLast Friday at 4:39 PM @Hans_Schmidt Well said. liqdmetalLast Friday at 4:40 PM I'm not concerned about a "asic hardware problem" so much as I believe it more likely what we are seeing is several big fish miners (perhaps a single really big fish). For now I recommend standing pat on x16r. In the future I can see an algo upgrade fork to keep the algo up to date. If we start fighting against dedicated x16r hashing machines designed and built to secure our network we are more likely to go down in flames. The custom SHA256 computers that make the bitcoin the most secure network in existence are a big part of that security. If some party has made an asic that performs up to par or better than FPGA or GPU on x16r, that is a positive for this network, a step towards SHA256 security levels. It is too bad the community is in the dark regarding their developments. Therefore I think the community has to clarify its stance towards algorithm changes. I prefer a policy that will encourage the development of mining software, bitstreams and hardware by as many parties as possible. The imminent threat of ALGO fork screws the incentive up for developers. JerozLast Friday at 4:40 PM @brutoid the vocal ones are lenient towards asics, but the outcome of the 600+ votes seemed pretty clear. brutoidLast Friday at 4:40 PM This is my confusion TronLast Friday at 4:41 PM More hashes are only better if the cost goes up proportionally. Machines that do more hashes for less $ doesn't secure the network more, and trends towards centralization. JerozLast Friday at 4:41 PM I would argue for polling ever so often as it certainly will evolve dynamically with the state of crypto over time. TronLast Friday at 4:41 PM Measure security in two dimensions. Distribution, and $/hash. liqdmetalLast Friday at 4:41 PM and volume of hash traysiLast Friday at 4:42 PM 45% of the hashrate going to one party is unhealthy, and standing pat on x16r just keeps that 45% where it is. TronLast Friday at 4:42 PM Volume doesn't matter if the cost goes down. For example, lets say software shows up that does 1000x better than the software from yesterday, and everyone moves to it. That does not add security. Even if the "difficulty" and embedded hashes took 1000x more attempts to find. brutoidLast Friday at 4:42 PM My issue is defintely centralization of hash and not so much what machine is doing it. I mine with both GPU and FPGA. Of course, the FPGAs are not on raven TJayLast Friday at 4:44 PM easy solution is just to replace a few of 16 current hash functions, without messing with x21r or whatever new shit TronLast Friday at 4:44 PM How do folks here feel about allowing CPUs back in the game? traysiLast Friday at 4:44 PM Botnets is my concern with CPUs brutoidLast Friday at 4:44 PM Botnets is my concern SpyderDevLast Friday at 4:44 PM Yes please. LSJI07 - MBITLast Friday at 4:44 PM the poll votes seem not very security conscious. More of day miners chasing profits. I love them bless! Imho the future is bright for raven, however these issues if not sorted out now will bite hard long term when asset are on the chain and gpu miners are long gone..... ZaabLast Friday at 4:45 PM How has the testing of restricted assets been on the test net? liqdmetalLast Friday at 4:45 PM Agreed. I dont think x16r is obsolete like that yet however [Dev-Happy] BlondfrogsLast Friday at 4:45 PM @Zaab not enough testing at the moment. HedgerLast Friday at 4:45 PM Yes, how is the Testing going? justinjjaLast Friday at 4:45 PM Like randomX or how are cpus going to be back in the game? TronLast Friday at 4:45 PM @Zaab Just getting started at testing at the surface level (RPC calls), and fixing as we go. ZaabLast Friday at 4:45 PM And or any updates on the review of dividend code created by the community Lokar -=Kai=-Last Friday at 4:45 PM if the amount of hash the unknown pool has is fixed as standarderror indicated then waiting for the community of FPGAers to get onto raven might be advantageous if the fork doesn't hurt FPGAs. ZaabLast Friday at 4:45 PM Can't rememeber who was on it SpyderDevLast Friday at 4:45 PM @Zaab But we are working on it... Lokar -=Kai=-Last Friday at 4:46 PM more hash for votes JerozLast Friday at 4:46 PM @Maldon is, @Zaab TronLast Friday at 4:46 PM @Zaab There are unit tests and functional tests already, but we'd like more. [Dev-Happy] BlondfrogsLast Friday at 4:46 PM @Zaab Dividend code is currently adding test cases for better security. Should have more update on that next meeting KAwARLast Friday at 4:46 PM Absolute democracy seems to resemble anarchy or at least civil war. In EVE online they have a type of community voice that get voted in by the community. ZaabLast Friday at 4:46 PM No worries was just curious if it was going as planned or significant issues were being found Obviously some hiccups are expected More testing is always better! TronLast Friday at 4:47 PM Who in here is up for a good civil war? :wink: ZaabLast Friday at 4:47 PM Tron v Bruce. Celebrity fight night with proceeds to go to the RVN dev fund SpyderDevLast Friday at 4:48 PM Cagefight or mudpit? JerozLast Friday at 4:48 PM talking about dev funds..... :wink: Pho3nix Monk3yLast Friday at 4:49 PM and there goes the conversation.... KAwARLast Friday at 4:49 PM I am trying to be serious... ZaabLast Friday at 4:49 PM Sorry back to the ascii topic! traysiLast Friday at 4:49 PM @Tron What do we need in order to make progress toward a decision on the algo? Is there a plan or a roadmap of sorts to get us some certainty about what we're going to do? LSJI07 - MBITLast Friday at 4:50 PM Could we have 3 no BIP9 votes? No1 Friendly to asics, retain status quo. No2 change to x17r minimal changes etc, with no additional future PoW/algo upgrades. No3. Full Asic resistance x22r and see what happens... :thonk~1: Sounds messy.... TronLast Friday at 4:51 PM Right now we're in research mode. We're building CNv4 so we can run some metrics. If that goes well, we can put together x22rc and see how it performs. It will likely gore everyone's ox. CPUs can play, GPUs work, but aren't dominant. ASICs VERY difficult, and FPGAs will have a tough time. ZaabLast Friday at 4:51 PM Yeah i feel like the results would be unreliable TronLast Friday at 4:51 PM Is this good, or do we lose everyone's vote? PlayHardLast Friday at 4:52 PM Fpga will be dead Lokar -=Kai=-Last Friday at 4:52 PM why isn;t a simple XOR or something on the table? ZaabLast Friday at 4:52 PM The multiple bip9 that is Lokar -=Kai=-Last Friday at 4:52 PM something asic breaking but doesn't greatly complicate ongoing efforts for FPGA being my point. justinjjaLast Friday at 4:52 PM How are you going to vote for x22rc? Because if by hashrate that wouldn't pass. traysiLast Friday at 4:52 PM Personally I like the idea of x22rc but I'd want to investigate the botnet threat if CPUs are allowed back in. TronLast Friday at 4:52 PM XOR is on the table, and was listed in my Medium post. But, the social risk of chain split remains, for very little gain. traysiLast Friday at 4:53 PM @Lokar -=Kai=- A small change means that whoever has 45% can probably quickly adapt. LSJI07 - MBITLast Friday at 4:53 PM Research sounds good. x22rc could be reduce to x22r for simplicity... TronLast Friday at 4:53 PM x22r is a viable option. No CNv4. LSJI07 - MBITLast Friday at 4:53 PM Don't know how much time we have to play with though... Lokar -=Kai=-Last Friday at 4:53 PM if they have FPGAs yes if they have ASIC then not so much, but I guess that gets to the point, what exactly are we trying to remove from the network? PlayHardLast Friday at 4:54 PM Guys my name is Arsen and we designed x16r fpga on bcus. Just about to release it to the public. I am buzzdaves partner. Cryptonight Will kill us But agreed Asic is possible on x16r And you dont need 256 core Cores traysiLast Friday at 4:55 PM Hi Arsen. Are you saying CN will kill "us" meaning RVN, or meaning FPGA? JerozLast Friday at 4:55 PM This is what im afraid of ^ an algo change killing FPGA as I have the feeling there is a big fpga community working on this PlayHardLast Friday at 4:55 PM Fpgas )) whitefire990Last Friday at 4:55 PM I am also about to release X16R for CVP13 + BCU1525 FPGA's. I'm open to algo changes but I really don't believe in CPU mining because of botnets. Any CNv4 shifts 100% to CPU mining, even if it is only 1 of the 22 functions. Lokar -=Kai=-Last Friday at 4:55 PM namely FPGAs that aren;t memory equipped like fast mem not ddr PlayHardLast Friday at 4:55 PM Hbm non hbm Cryptonight whitefire990Last Friday at 4:56 PM Right now with both Buzzdave/Altered Silicon and myself (Zetheron) about to release X16R for FPGA's, then the 45% miner's share will decrease to 39% or less. PlayHardLast Friday at 4:56 PM Will be dead for fpga LSJI07 - MBITLast Friday at 4:56 PM sound so x22r is fpga "friendly" ... more so than asic anyway... PlayHardLast Friday at 4:56 PM But a change must be planned X16r is no way possible to avoid asics TJayLast Friday at 4:56 PM @LSJI07 - MBIT I would say less friendly... whitefire990Last Friday at 4:57 PM As I mentioned in thenest discussion, asic resistance increases with the square of the number of functions, so X21R is more asic resistant than X16R, but both are pretty resistant PlayHardLast Friday at 4:58 PM Yeah more algos make it heavier on ASIC DirkDiggler (Citadel Architect)Last Friday at 4:58 PM My interpretation of the whitepaper was that we used x16r as it was brand new (thus ASIC resistant), and that was to ensure a fair launch... We've launched... I don't like the idea of constantly forking to avoid the inevitable ASICs. x16r was a great "experiment" before we had any exchange listings... that ship has sailed though... not sure about all these x22rs lmnop changes KAwARLast Friday at 5:00 PM I believe that it is easier to change the direction of a bicycle than an oil tanker. We feel more like a train. We should lay out new tracks and test on them and find benefits that are acceptable to everyone except train robbers. Then open the new train station with no contentious feelings except a silently disgruntled minority group. ??? Hans_SchmidtLast Friday at 5:01 PM The most productive action the community can do now re ASICs is to voice support for the devs to make a non-BIP9 change at a chosen block height if/when the need is clear. That removes the pressure to act rashly to avoid voting problems. LSJI07 - MBITLast Friday at 5:01 PM Thats why im proposing to fork at least once to a more asic resistant algo (but FPGA "friendly/possible"), with the proviso ideally that no more PoW algo forks are require to provide future ASICs some opportunity to innovate with silicon and efficiency. TJayLast Friday at 5:01 PM folks should take into account, that high end FPGAs like BCU1525 on x16r can't beat even previous gen GPUs (Pascal) in terms of hash cost. so they aren't a threat to miners community PlayHardLast Friday at 5:02 PM A proper change Requires proper research eyz (Silence)Last Friday at 5:02 PM Just so I'm clear here, we are trying to boot ASICS, don't want CPUs because of Botnets, and are GPU and FPGA friendly right? PlayHardLast Friday at 5:02 PM It is not a quick one day process eyz (Silence)Last Friday at 5:02 PM If there is a bip9 vote there needs to be a clear explanation as I feel most in the community don't understand exactly what we are trying to fix TronLast Friday at 5:03 PM @Hans_Schmidt I like that route. It has some game theoretics. It gives time for miners to adapt. It is only used if needed. It reduces the likelihood of ASICs dominating the network, or even being built. [Dev-Happy] BlondfrogsLast Friday at 5:03 PM Hey guys. great convo. We are of course looking to do the best thing for the community and miner. We are going to be signing off here though. justinjjaLast Friday at 5:03 PM TJay that comes down to power cost. If your paying 4c/kw gpus all the way. But if your a home miner in europe an fpga is your only chance LSJI07 - MBITLast Friday at 5:03 PM @Hans_Schmidt How do we decide the block limit and when sufficient evidence is available? I would say we have had much compelling information to date... [Dev-Happy] BlondfrogsLast Friday at 5:03 PM Thanks for participating. and keep up the good work :smiley: Have a good weekend. CAWWWW TronLast Friday at 5:03 PM I haven't seen any compelling evidence of ASICs - yet. Pho3nix Monk3yLast Friday at 5:03 PM :v: JerozLast Friday at 5:04 PM I suggest to continue discussion in #development and #thenest :smiley: thanks all! TronLast Friday at 5:04 PM Cheers everyone! KAwARLast Friday at 5:04 PM Agree with Hans. DirkDiggler (Citadel Architect)Last Friday at 5:04 PM thanks Tron Pho3nix Monk3yLast Friday at 5:04 PM Ending here. continue in Nest if wanted DirkDiggler (Citadel Architect)Last Friday at 5:04 PM I am waiting for compelling evidence myself.
Beer, Blockchain and Derivatives Trades: A Hackathon Brings Bankers and Techies Together to Disrupt a Trillion-Dollar Market
The beer was flowing and the hubbub of conversation was beginning to rise at Barclays’ fintech hub in London’s trendy Shoreditch neighborhood last week. After a marathon competition, developers finally let their hair down. For the previous 48 hours, the participants of DerivHack had been testing new digital tools. There was more than just pride on the line. The new technologies promise to cut billions from the cost of processing trades in the multi-trillion-dollar derivatives and securities markets. For two days, in long sessions fueled by coffee and Coca-Cola, international teams of developers in London, New York and Singapore tested a new trading standard developed by the industry group, International Swaps and Derivatives Association (ISDA) that could transform the way the derivatives industry and other financial markets work. Banks and developers say the new trading standard, coupled with distributed ledger technology, could bring big savings to the expensive business of processing trades. A distributed ledger is a secure, decentralized database shared among different parties. Think of it as a bookkeeping method that instantly verifies that you’re getting precisely what you’ve agreed to. The best-known ledger technology is blockchain, which underpins the cryptocurrency bitcoin. In recent years, there’s been considerable hype around deploying distributed ledger technology in the banking sector to speed up all manner of transactions that now take days to clear. The derivatives market is particularly ripe for disruption. Despite is size, it’s riddled with inefficiency. Participants have established myriad ways to process trades over the years, leading to redundant layers of processing and compounding reconciliation costs, which occur when the data shared between the buyer and seller doesn’t perfectly match up.
A billion dollar fix
The ISDA’s fix to this problem is called Common Domain Model (CDM), a distributed ledger technology that it’s rolled out in stages over the past year that promises to automate the processing of derivatives trades. Deloitte reckons a blockchain-derived tool such as this could cut dealers’ costs of roughly $3.2 billion by 80-85%. “The total opportunity becomes much larger when considering the inclusion of other market participants outside the dealer community, benefits to regulators, improvements in funding, and balance sheet optimization,” Deloitte said in a recent report. But if CDM is ever to become a trusted trading standard, the geeks first have to put it through its paces. That’s why Barclays sponsored the hackathon, now in its second year. To get away from the suits in the Square Mile, it held the event where the coders and engineers could be found during the day—its Rise building in Shoreditch, which houses dozens of finch start-ups.
Making sense of credit default swaps
The market value of over-the-counter derivatives has fallen since the financial crisis of 2007-09. That’s when one type of derivative, credit default swaps, dominated before the market imploded under the weight of a cascade of defaults. But the gross market value of OTC derivatives still stood at a staggering $9.7 trillion at the end of 2018, down from a peak of $35 trillion in 2008, according to the Bank for International Settlements. The Common Domain Model was developed by ISDA in an effort to harmonize a patchwork of different conventions used to represent derivatives trades and processes, and bring them in line with the latest regulation. Another plus: it can automate error-prone manual processes. At its “derivatives hackathon”, Barclays gave teams of IT developers trading scenarios that required them to use ISDA’s CDM standard; the teams chose the technology platform—whether a centralized database or a distributed ledger platform. The scenarios allowed the teams to model post-trade processing of derivatives contracts to show how efficiencies could be achieved by using the CDM standard. Barclays hosted a similar event last year in New York and London. This year, DerivHack was extended to Singapore and the product scope broadened to include securities. Fifteen teams took part in London, 19 in New York and 8 in Singapore, including a team from Russia. In addition to Barclays, participating banks included JP Morgan, Goldman Sachs, HSBC, UBS, Bank of America and NatWest. Ian Sloyan, ISDA’s director for market infrastructure and technology, said ISDA was seeing a lot of interest in the new standard. “We are seeing some real-life projects now talking about implementing the ISDA CDM, which is happening at pace. In the next year, I think we are going to see some big implementation projects that will demonstrate how important the ISDA CDM is going to be to the market,” he told Fortune. Lee Braine, Barclays’ director of research and engineering, said that, a year ago, the purpose of the hackathon was to get a sense from the industry of whether the CDM made sense, and was usable. “We’re past that. The answer was yes. So now the challenge is: how do you drive adoption?” he said, adding the interest is strong from banks and fintechs alike. Sunil Challa, director, Business Architect, Barclays Strategy, said one big development since last year was that ISDA had made CDM open source, meaning any developer could work with the model, regardless of whether they were experts in financial services. “Within the blockchain/distributed ledger technology platforms, three out of the four major platforms have essentially taken this standard and mapped it, and extended it on their platforms,” he said. The winner of the London leg of DerivHack was Finteum, a startup that is building a platform for banks to borrow and lend to each other for hours at a time instead of overnight. Co-founder Brian Nolan found it relatively easy for Finteum, as a new trading platform, to integrate CDM into its platform. He said CDM showed promise as a standard. “Absolutely, not just derivatives, but here as you’ve seen in the securities industry, I think there is growing momentum behind it. I think today’s event proves that,” he told Fortune.
Final version 1.3.0 of the core software was released bringing all the enhancements reported last month to the rest of the community. The groundwork for SPV (simplified payment verification) is complete, another reduction of fees is being deployed, and performance stepped up once again with a 50% reduction in startup time, 20% increased sync speed and more than 3x faster peer delivery of block headers (a key update for SPV). Decrediton's integrations of SPV and Politeia are open for testing by experienced users. Read the full release notes and get the downloads on GitHub. As always, don't forget to verify signatures. dcrd: completed several steps towards multipeer downloads, improved introduction to the software in the main README, continued porting cleanups and refactoring from upstream btcd. Currently in review are initial release of smart fee estimator and a change to UTXO set semantics. The latter is a large and important change that provides simpler handling, and resolves various issues with the previous approach. A lot of testing and careful review is needed so help is welcome. Educational series for new Decred developers by @matheusd added two episodes: 02 Simnet Setup shows how to automate simnet management with tmux and 03 Miner Reward Invalidation explains block validity rules. Finally, a pull request template with a list of checks was added to help guide the contributors to dcrd. dcrwallet: bugfixes and RPC improvements to support desktop and mobile wallets. Developers are welcome to comment on this idea to derive stakepool keys from the HD wallet seed. This would eliminate the need to backup and restore redeem scripts, thus greatly improving wallet UX. (missed in July issue) Decrediton: bugfixes, refactoring to make the sync process more robust, new loading animations, design polishing. Politeia: multiple improvements to the CLI client (security conscious users with more funds at risk might prefer CLI) and security hardening. A feature to deprecate or timeout proposals was identified as necessary for initial release and the work started. A privacy enhancement to not leak metadata of ticket holders was merged. Android: update from @collins: "Second test release for dcrandroid is out. Major bugs have been fixed since last test. Latest code from SPV sync has been integrated. Once again, bug reports are welcome and issues can be opened on GitHub". Ask in #dev room for the APK to join testing. A new security page was added that allows one to validate addresses and to sign/verify messages, similar to Decrediton's Security Center. Work on translations is beginning. Overall the app is quite stable and accepting more testers. Next milestone is getting the test app on the app store. iOS: the app started accepting testers last week. @macsleven: "the test version of Decred Wallet for iOS is available, we have a link for installing the app but the builds currently require your UDID. Contact either @macsleven or @raedah with your UDID if you would like to help test.". Nearest goal is to make the app crash free. Both mobile apps received new design themes. dcrdata: v3.0 was released for mainnet! Highlights: charts, "merged debits" view, agendas page, Insight API support, side chain tracking, Go 1.11 support with module builds, numerous backend improvements. Full release notes here. This release featured 9 contributors and development lead @chappjc noted: "This collaboration with @raedahgroup on our own block explorer and web API for @decredproject has been super productive.". Up next is supporting dynamic page widths site wide and deploying new visual blocks home page. Trezor: proof of concept implementation for Trezor Model T firmware is in the works (previous work was for Model One). Ticket splitting: updated to use Go modules and added simnet support, several fixes. docs: beginner's guide overhaul, multiple fixes and cleanups. decred.org: added 3rd party wallets, removed inactive PoW pools and removed web wallet. @Richard-Red is building a curated list of Decred-related GitHub repositories. Welcome to new people contributing for the first time: @klebe, @s_ben, @victorguedes, and PrimeDominus! Dev activity stats for September: 219 active PRs, 197 commits, 28.7k added and 18.8k deleted lines spread across 6 repositories. Contributions came from 4-10 developers per repository. (chart)
Hashrate: started and ended the month around 75 PH/s, hitting a low of 60.5 and a new high of 110 PH/s. BeePool is again the leader with their share varying between 23-54%, followed by F2Pool 13-30%, Coinmine 4-6% and Luxor 3-5%. As in previous months, there were multiple spikes of unidentified hashrate. Staking: 30-day average ticket price is 98 DCR (+2.4). The price varied between 95.7 and 101.9 DCR. Locked DCR amount was 3.86-3.96 million DCR, or 45.7-46.5% of the supply. Nodes: there are 201 public listening nodes and 325 normal nodes per dcred.eu. Version distribution: 5% are v1.4.0(pre) dev builds (+3%), 30% on v1.3.0 (+25%), 42% on v1.2.0 (-20%), 15% on v1.1.2 (-7%), 6% on v1.1.0. More than 76% of nodes run v1.2.0 and higher and therefore support client filters. Data as of Oct 1.
Obelisk posted two updates on their mailing list. 70% of Batch 1 units are shipped, an extensive user guide is available, Obelisk Scanner application was released that allows one to automatically update firmware. First firmware update was released and bumped SC1 hashrate by 10-20%, added new pools and fixed multiple bugs. Next update will focus on DCR1. It is worth a special mention that the firmware source code is now open! Let us hope more manufacturers will follow this example. A few details about Whatsminer surfaced this month. The manufacturer is MicroBT, also known as Bitwei and commonly misspelled as Bitewei. Pangolinminer is a reseller, and the model name is Whatsminer D1. Bitmain has finally entered Decred ASIC space with their Antminer DR3. Hash rate is 7.8 TH/s while pulling 1410 W, at the price of $673. These specs mean it has the best GH/W and GH/USD of currently sold miners until the Whatsminer or others come out, although its GH/USD of 11.6 already competes with Whatsminer's 10.5. Discussed on Reddit and bitcointalk, unboxing video here.
@matheusd started tests on testnet several months ago. I contacted him so we could integrate with the pool in June this year. We set up the machine in July and bought the first split ticket on mainnet, using the decredbrasil pool, on July 19. It was voted on July 30. After this first vote on mainnet, we opened the tests to selected users (with more technical background) on the pool. In August we opened the tests to everyone, and would call people who want to join to the #ticket_splitting channel, or to our own Slack (in Portuguese, so mostly Brazilian users). We have 28 split tickets already voted, and 16 are live. So little more than 40 split tickets total were bought on decredbrasil pool. (@girino in #pos-voting)
KuCoin exchange listed DCBTC and DCETH pairs. To celebrate their anniversary they had a 99% trading fees discount on DCR pairs for 2 weeks. Three more wallets integrated Decred in September:
Atomic desktop wallet added Decred in version 0.1.31. The team answered many questions on Reddit.
AnyBit wallet added Decred. It features built-in price and news tracking. Notably, the source code is open for their Android and iOS wallets.
Coboadded Decred support into their Android and iOS wallets.
ChangeNow announced Decred addition to their Android app that allows accountless swaps between 150+ assets. Coinbase launched informational asset pages for top 50 coins by market cap, including Decred. First the pages started showing in the Coinbase app for a small group of testers, and later the web price dashboard went live.
The birth of a Brazilian girl was registered on the Decred blockchain using OriginalMy, a blockchain proof of authenticity services provider. Read the full story in Portuguese and in English.
Advertising report for September is ready. Next month the graphics for all the ads will be changing.
Marketing might seem quiet right now, but a ton is actually going on behind the scenes to put the right foundation in place for the future. Discovery data are being analyzed to generate a positioning strategy, as well as a messaging hierarchy that can guide how to talk about Decred. This will all be agreed upon via consensus of the community in the work channels, and materials will be distributed. Next, work is being done to identify the right PR partner to help with media relations, media training, and coordination at events. While all of this is coming up to speed, we believe the website needs a refresher reflecting the soon to be agreed upon messaging, plus a more intuitive architecture to make it easier to navigate. (@Dustorf)
Raedah Group went on the streets of Portland, USA with a pretty blue tent. (photos)
Meetup at Binzantin Cafe in Taipei, Taiwan. @morphymore: "There were 20-ish attendees, and about half of them have joined the Chinese FB group. Most of them don't hear about Decred before, but have expressed the interest in learning more about it after the event. Overall, it's a good exposure for Decred in the Taiwan community.". A report with photos was posted on Facebook, more photos are here and here.
@joshuam made a Decred Jacket appearance at Singapore Grand Prix. (photos)
NewTech PDX meetup in Portland, USA. Raedah Group presented Decred and reported "lots of new converts". (photos)
North Shore Bitcoin & Blockchain in Glenview, USA. @dustorf gave a five minute overview of Decred and noted: "There were only about 25 people, but about 1/3 of them were aware of Decred prior. (...) Our simple presence and explanation of the project moved opinion from 'another shitcoin they sold after mining' to 'an interesting and viable project worthy of further investigation'.". (photos: 12)
Bitcoin Meetup CDMX in Mexico City on Oct 6. @elian will be talking about Decred at the oldest Bitcoin meetup in Mexico.
SF Blockchain Week in San Francisco, USA on Oct 9. @lukebp will discuss DPoS vs PoS on a panel 9:30a-10:15a at the Titans of Tech Stage, Hilton Union Square.
Decred Meetup in Casablanca, Morocco on Oct 27. @butterfly will host the event and talk about Decred in French.
Texas Bitcoin Conference Austin, USA on Oct 27-28. @BAB: "The great thing about this is that it will also be a Decred Summit. We will have half of the conference dedicated to Decred topics, updates, etc."
Websummit in Lisbon, Portugal on Nov 5-8. @moo31337 will be on a panel discussing "2018: A Rollercoaster Year for Cryptocurrencies"
We'll begin shortly reviewing conferences and events planned for the first half of 2019. Highlights are sure to include The North American Bitcoin Conference in Miami (Jan 16-18) and Consensus in NYC (May 14-16). If you have suggestions of events or conferences Decred should attend, please share them in #event_planning. In 2019, we would like to expand our presence in Europe, Asia, and South America, and we're looking for community members to help identify and staff those events. (@Dustorf)
August issue of Decred Journal was translated to Russian. Many thanks to @DZ! Rency cryptocurrency ratings published a report on Decred and incorporated a lot of feedback from the community on Reddit. September issue of Chinese CCID ratings was published (snapshot), Decred is still at the bottom. Videos:
The underbelly of blockchain Governance - fiat licensing and our code with Marco Peerboom and Chris DeRose (youtube, tweet, decred, missed in August issue) Insightful dialogue about men's underwear, licenses, subtleties of GPL, BSD wars, tiling window managers and much more.
Introduction to Decred (Korean, youtube) @Killawhale collected a lot of feedback from the community and produced this video to spread the word in Korea.
Perspectives on Governance from Nathan Wilcox, Jonathan Zeppettini, Vitalik Buterin (z.cash)
Decred - an example of governance (Portuguese, youtube)
Decred, the crypto that wants to compete with Bitcoin (French, youtube)
Exodus.io Live with Marco from Decred! (youtube) Marco joins Exodus.io to discuss what makes DCR an asset that will stand the test of time.
Building Decred With Systems Development Lead Marco Peereboom - Governance, Politeia, Lightning (youtube) Topics: early days, Politeia, the structure of Decred, dcrtime, Lightning Network, attracting users and developers, future plans (DEX, Schnorr signatures, privacy, DAEs).
Decentralized autonomous funding of blockchain projects by @Richard-Red (medium, discussion on decred and dashpay)
The trouble with infrastructure, "thin" protocols in particular, is that someone has to build them at a cost. e.g. LN takes a ton of work, doesn't necessarily generate value itself, but it magnifies the value of BTC or whatever coin that uses it. I see the DEX in a similar light - whoever creates it is not going to make a bunch of money from it, but it will magnify the value of the underlying asset(s) that end up having a deep order book on the DEX. (@jy-p in #dex)
Twitter: why decentralized governance and funding are necessary for network survival and the power of controlling the narrative; learning about governance more broadly by watching its evolution in cryptocurrency space, importance of community consensus and communications infrastructure. Reddit: yet another strong pitch by @solar; question about buyer protections; dcrtime internals; a proposal to sponsor hoodies in the University of Cape Town; Lightning Network support for altcoins. Chats: skills to operate a stakepool; voting details: 2 of 3 votes can approve a block, what votes really approve are regular tx, etc; scriptless script atomic swaps using Schnorr adaptor signatures; dev dashboard, choosing work, people do best when working on what interests them most; opportunities for governments and enterprise for anchoring legal data to blockchain; terminology: DAO vs DAE; human-friendly payments, sharing xpub vs payment protocols; funding btcsuite development; Politeia vote types: approval vote, sentiment vote and a defund vote, also linking proposals and financial statements; algo trading and programming languages (yes, on #trading!); alternative implementation, C/C++/Go/Rust; HFTs, algo trading, fake volume and slippage; offline wallets, usb/write-only media/optical scanners vs auditing traffic between dcrd and dcrwallet; Proof of Activity did not inspire Decred but spurred Decred to get moving, Wikipedia page hurdles; how stakeholders could veto blocks; how many votes are needed to approve a proposal; why Decrediton uses Electron; CVE-2018-17144 and over-dependence on single Bitcoin implementation, btcsuite, fuzz testing; tracking proposal progress after voting and funding; why the wallet does not store the seed at all; power connectors, electricity, wiring and fire safety; reasonable spendings from project fund; ways to measure sync progress better than block height; using Politeia without email address; concurrency in Go, locks vs channels. #support is not often mentioned, but it must be noted that every day on this channel people get high quality support. (@bee: To my surprise, even those poor souls running Windows 10. My greatest respect to the support team!)
In September DCR was trading in the range of USD 34-45 / BTC 0.0054-0.0063. On Sep 6, DCR revisited the bottom of USD 34 / BTC 0.0054 when BTC quickly dropped from USD 7,300 to 6,400. On Sep 14, a small price rise coincided with both the start of KuCoin trading and hashrate spike to 104 PH/s. Looking at coinmarketcap charts, the trading volume is a bit lower than in July and August. As of Oct 4, Decred is #18 by the number of daily transactions with 3,200 tx, and #9 by the USD value of daily issuance with $230k. (source: onchainfx) Interesting observation by @ImacallyouJawdy: while we sit at 2018 price lows the amount locked in tickets is testing 2018 high.
ASIC for Lyra2REv2 was spotted on the web. Vertcoin team is preparing a new PoW algorithm. This would be the 3rd fork after two previous forks to change the algorithm in 2014 and 2015. A report titled The Positive Externalities of Bitcoin Mining discusses the benefits of PoW mining that are often overlooked by the critics of its energy use. A Brief Study of Cryptonetwork Forks by Alex Evans of Placeholder studies the behavior of users, developers and miners after the fork, and makes the cases that it is hard for child chains to attract users and developers from their parent chains. New research on private atomic swaps: the paper "Anonymous Atomic Swaps Using Homomorphic Hashing" attempts to break the public link between two transactions. (bitcointalk, decred) On Sep 18 Poloniex announced delisting of 8 more assets. That day they took a 12-80% dive showing their dependence on this one exchange. Circle introduced USDC markets on Poloniex: "USDC is a fully collateralized US dollar stablecoin using the ERC-20 standard that provides detailed financial and operational transparency, operates within the regulated framework of US money transmission laws, and is reinforced by established banking partners and auditors.". Coinbase announced new asset listing process and is accepting submissions on their listing portal. (decred) The New York State Office of the Attorney General posted a study of 13 exchanges that contains many insights. A critical vulnerability was discovered and fixed in Bitcoin Core. Few days later a full disclosure was posted revealing the severity of the bug. In a bitcointalk thread btcd was called 'amateur' despite not being vulnerable, and some Core developers voiced their concerns about multiple implementations. The Bitcoin Unlimited developer who found the bug shared his perspective in a blog post. Decred's vision so far is that more full node implementations is a strength, just like for any Internet protocol.
About This Issue
This is the 6th issue of Decred Journal. It is mirrored on GitHub, Medium and Reddit. Past issues are available here. Most information from third parties is relayed directly from source after a minimal sanity check. The authors of Decred Journal have no ability to verify all claims. Please beware of scams and do your own research. Feedback is appreciated: please comment on Reddit, GitHub or #writers_room on Matrix or Slack. Contributions are also welcome: some areas are adding content, pre-release review or translations to other languages. Credits (Slack names, alphabetical order): bee, Dustorf, jz, Haon, oregonisaac, raedah and Richard-Red.
I'm writing a series about blockchain tech and possible future security risks. This is the fourth part of the series explaining the special quality of going quantum resistant from genesis block.
In part 4 I describe the advantages of going quantum resistant from genesis block. Genesis block is the first block of a blockchain. Being quantum resistant from genesis block means that a project launches from the very first beginning while using a quantum resistant signature scheme. This has several advantages I like to discuss in this part of the series. Part 1, what makes blockchain reliable? Part 2, The mathematical concepts Hashing and Public key cryptography. Part 3, Quantum resistant blockchain vs Quantum computing. Quantum resistance (QR) from genesis block. Why is it a special quality? Content: 4A (You are reading 4A right now) What are the challenges of upgrading an existing blockchain to a quantum resistant one? What you see is what you get: the performance of other blockchains that upgrade later, could be different after the upgrade. The whole architecture can be designed around post-quantum cryptography. 4B(posted here) Lost addresses and the human factor: a partly protected circulating supply after a quantum resistant upgrade The time factor The case of a black swan event where unexpectedly fast, an entity will appear to have a quantum computer of critical level. The fourth part is divided into two sub parts: 4A and 4B due to the size of the content. This should be fun and readable so part 4B will follow tomorrow. What are the challenges of upgrading an existing blockchain to a quantum resistant one? If a special quality doesn’t solve a certain issue, it would be of no value, so let’s first dig a bit deeper in the future issues for current running blockchains. It is important to start with mentioning the simple fact that a launched, working blockchain isn’t something that can be adjusted with the flip of a switch. Upgrading a blockchain to a post-quantum signature scheme is no small undertaking. Changing a signature scheme is not just copy paste and change some lines of code. It’s actually a decent amount of coding that needs to be done. We are not simply talking about a core framework upgrade. Rather, all aspects of the project will end up needing an upgrade. The supporting systems that allow the blockchain to operate will also need to be upgraded. Software wallets, hardware wallets, block explorers, mining operations, pools... anything connected to an API and more will also need a brush up of code to be compliant with the new changes. Then exchanges will also need to adapt to the new chain. And for example, for a blockchain like Bitcoin and Ethereum this is going to be extra complex, as they need to fully disable their old signature scheme. The second challenge is that you need consensus, you need the majority of the nodes to upgrade. If you want to change the signature scheme and make sure the old, vulnerable scheme is rejected, you need to upgrade at least the majority of nodes, or you will end up with the old, vulnerable signature scheme or two different blockchains where the main chain will still be using the old signature scheme and thus will not be quantum resistant. As explained in the previous part, we can’t have the old signature scheme to be valid because that would mean that the blockchain would still allow the use of vulnerable old public and private keys and thus the old vulnerable signatures for transactions, so at least the majority of the nodes need to upgrade to make sure that blocks which are constructed using the old rules and thus the old vulnerable signature scheme, are rejected by the network. This will eventually result in a fully upgraded network which only accepts the new post quantum signature scheme in transactions. So, consensus is needed. The past has proven that reaching consensus in a decentralized system as blockchain, is not a fast, fluent process. You need the nodes to update to your new version. The nodes have the choice to do so or refuse. That makes it, so to speak, a democratic system which makes any change a slow process. The past has proven that a simple change to improve speed and transaction costs couldn’t be realized because miners couldn’t agree on to which of the working solutions would be implemented. There are several solutions to a serious problem, but none is implemented (at least not in the original chain). If you compare this to changing a signature scheme, it’s not going to be any easier. There will be different schemes available, different choices to make how to implement them, and thus there will be different options on the table. The need for QR might be a huge incentive to implement as soon as possible, but that doesn’t mean there won’t be different interests for the people running nodes. One option might mean better performance, but 60% of the people running nodes, will need to buy new equipment. The other option might mean lesser investments for equipment, but also slower transactions and the risk of losing users and market share. These discussions and differences in interest and view point, will not help to reach consensus fast. Another challenge is that post-quantum is a specialized kind of cryptography. Post-quantum cryptography is a real specialty. Choosing the right scheme and implementing it without the right knowledge, might backfire. So implementing post-quantum cryptography without consulting a post-quantum cryptographer and commissioning an external audit is a serious risk. What will you use? Will you use XMSS? How you make sure your blockchain can handle stateful signatures? You use WOTS+? How you make sure this is user-friendly? How will you make sure there is no old debtor who will sent funds to an old address? You use SPHINCS? How you going to handle 41KB signatures? You use BLISS B? How you prevent side channel attacks? You waiting for a NIST outcome? There is no guarantee that will be a magic scheme. Might still take a lot of work to implement. Just an example: If you will use WOTS+, you will need to find a solution for the fact that you can't reuse addresses. The most well known example is IOTA. They had some unexpected issues where people actually lost money. The problem went a bit deeper than just not reusing addresses: http://blog.lekkertech.net/blog/2018/03/07/iota-signatures/ This is fixed from the user perspective in the Trinity wallet. The remaining issue to solve now is the fact that constantly changing addresses, excludes IOTA from being used by companies. Any company needs a standard address to pay to for the obvious reasons. (qr-code stickers meaning the quick response code not to be confused with the abbreviation for quantum resistance, invoicing and the random order of customers paying invoices, etc.) Propositions for a solution have been made so this is still an ongoing process for IOTA. XMSS is even more complex to implement compared to WOTS+. So it’s quite a time-consuming and challenging project to implement and upgrade an existing project. As an existing fully quantum resistant blockchain, having your security in check in advance, gives the certainty you’re in time, and all is checked, audited and working properly. Which obviously is a plus. What you see is what you get: the performance of other blockchains that upgrade later, could be different after the upgrade. The majority of NIST’s suggested post-quantum signature schemes will drastically increase the block size and take more resources to compute. This may in turn slow down the transactions per second a lot of projects aim to reduce. Quantum resistant signature schemes will mean bigger signatures. That has consequences for the performance of a blockchain, unless big innovative changes are made. So at the moment where quantum resistance becomes a must, something unexpected will happen. Projects that have postponed an implementation of quantum resistant signature schemes will be set back. The upgrade to a safer signature scheme will actually be partly a downgrade for pretty much all existing projects. There are only two blockchains who use quantum resistant signature schemes right now: QRL (XMSS) and Mochimo (WOTS+). The only reason for them to change signature schemes, is if a better, more efficient post-quantum signature scheme will be developed compared to the post-quantum signature scheme they use right now. NIST has initiated the research and review of post-quantum cryptography. https://www.nist.gov/news-events/news/2016/04/nist-kicks-effort-defend-encrypted-data-quantum-computer-threat So there might be something better available in the future. If this is indeed better, going from XMSS to something better, will be an over all upgrade. (NIST will either come up with something better, more efficient, or there will be nothing new to recommend at all). So while all other projects will partly downgrade performance wise, quantum resistant blockchains will either stay the same or upgrade and perform better. How bigger signatures influence the speed with which transactions are sent and confirmed on a blockchain: first a quick summary of the way transactions are handled: All miners, collect all transactions that people are sending in a transaction pool. There, transactions wait until a miner puts a number of these collected transaction in a block. This is where a block is constructed. After he has constructed a block, he has to solve a hash puzzle applied on his list of transactions that he registered on his block. The miner who has solved his hash puzzle, is allowed to put his block on the network. If this block will eventually be part of the longest chain, the transaction will be confirmed and validated. Either the size of the block will be influenced by bigger signatures, or if the block size is fixed, the amount of transactions that fit in a block will be influenced. Now there are two types of speed that are influenced and are both important for the performance of the blockchain:
Capacity, so the amount of transactions a blockchain can confirm in a second at maximum capacity. So if BTC for example can confirm 7 transactions a second (it’s max capacity), then as soon as more than 7 transactions per second are added to the network, BTC has reached its maximum capacity. In that case, the individual transactions will need to wait in line and the individual transaction speed is slowed down. (Unless you increase your fee, then your transaction will be prioritized and you might make the standard individual transaction speed. Of course depending on the height of other fees.)
Individual transaction speed. This is the time within which you send a transaction and your transaction is confirmed on the network. This is the speed that applies for the moment where the blockchain is operating under its maximum capacity. So that means a transaction is added to a block almost as soon as it arrives at a node and gets processed right away.
The capacity depends on the block time (the amount of time it takes for a block to be mined) and the amount of transactions that fit in a block. The bigger the signature, the bigger and “heavier” the transaction, which results in either fewer transactions fitting in one block or bigger block size. Which in turn then results in less transactions confirmed per block or bigger block times which both leads to less transactions per second. Now there could be solutions for the big signature size issue. Solutions being developed right now for scaling, could solve the problem for quantum resistant blockchains. But this is ongoing research to be looked into more in depth. To overcome the shortfalls of post-quantum signature schemes some developers may decide to roll their own crypto, which has majorly failed in the past with other projects. Cryptography is difficult to understand and implement, much less post-quantum cryptography. Besides that it has to be tested and checked, preferably by external, professional parties to be proven secure. To this end there are only a handful of researchers worldwide even qualified in this specialty field. The whole architecture can be designed around post-quantum cryptography. Besides the fact a blockchain is from the start designed around post-quantum signature schemes, one of the key points in the architecture would be a flexible signature space for addresses and having a chain that's already designed to handle, for example stateful signatures. The handling of stateful signatures would come naturally if the chain is already using a post-quantum scheme like that, but should another come along that's better, the whole architecture is build and ready to switch. This is compared to one that has a small signature space and can't define them, as well as the lack of capability of handling state in chain (for example Bitcoin). Take QRL for example: https://docs.theqrl.org/developers/address/#descriptor QRL already implemented a quantum resistant signature scheme: XMSS. But at the same time their chain architecture is build to switch signature schemes: When you form a QRL address, First 3 bytes of your address forms the Descriptor. In Descriptor bit number 4 to 7 are used to specify signature scheme. These 4 bits are used to specify if we have any other signature scheme. In part 4B I dive deeper in the issue of lost addresses for existing blockchains like for example the ~1 milion BTC in Satoshi's wallet. Also I will get into the time issue and a possible black swan event. Part 5, Why BTC will be vulnerable sooner than expected.
Minted our first bitcoin this morning! Took about 18 hours (Butterfly Labs Mini Rig SC 500 GH/s)
http://i.imgur.com/LvDPIjY.png We're using the Butterfly Labs 500 GH/s Mini Rig. Might as well do a small review -- the hardware itself is temperamental. For example, ours showed up with the unresponsive Nexus tablet on the front panel. Dealing with Butterfly is a total shit sandwich given the rip-and-run state of the overall business, so I had to figure out how to bypass the internal routing and have a laptop be the brains of the operation. After a couple of days of messing with usb drivers, which refused to stand up on Windows 7, I finally got the laptop to recognize all 8 modules. However, I could not start mining due to an error starting the bfg miner task from the inside of their Easy Miner application. I tried to force bfg via the command line, and it finally worked, although the hash rate was atrocious. Another day or so, and I had the rig mining. The hardware recognition issue was due to me not giving the laptop enough time to kick ALL modules on. It takes a good 2-3 minutes for all usb notifications to stop bleep-blooping. The hash rate was in the 470 GH/s area, which was perfect, but then the modules started to shut themselves off due to overheating at 83 C. The log would show how the unit was taking down hot modules and then kicking them back on non-stop. The ambient temp in the room is around 75. I played with positioning, fan speeds, to no avail. The hash rate at that point dropped into the 400s, and my 15 amp circuit breakers started to get tripped. This went on for a little, and then I permanently blew one of them and had to pick some up at the Home Depot. But hey, it only took a single trip :) So then I got a 5200 BTU A/C unit, mounted it in the window, and positioned the rig in front of it. That seemed to fix the breaker-tripping and overheating issues. It runs at low 70s C during the day and low 60s C at night. I am now making custom funnels out of thermal foam board to vent exhaust heat outside and also connect the 11" AC opening to the 16"x16" intake area of the rig (looks something like this). The unit generates a lot of heat, no joke. I bet when the weather gets colder, it can serve as a furnace for this side of the house. If you're wondering why I'm talking about it still not being cold outside in November, I'm in Texas. It's really beautiful right now, high of 75 and sunny. Also, the noise ... how could I forget about the noise. It sounds like a server room. There's 18 fans, plus PSU fans, and they are quite loud. Don't expect to inconspicuously set this rig in the corner of your living room. It's been on for over 24 hours now, uninterrupted. To the moon! Timestamp,Core Temp,AC ON/OFF,Total Mined (BTC) 11/1/2013 12:00 PM,80 C,OFF,0.00 11/3/2013 3:30 PM,73 C,OFF,1.78 11/4/2013 2:05 PM,75 C,ON,2.28 11/5/2013 11:00 AM,75 C,ON,2.74 11/6/2013 5:00 PM,70 C,OFF,3.18 11/7/2013 12:00 PM,79 C,OFF,3.53 11/8/2013 5:00 PM,70 C,OFF,4.03 11/13/2013 11:00 PM,68 C,OFF,6.01 11/18/2013 5:00 PM,78 C,OFF,7.69 11/23/2013 11:00 AM,66 C,OFF,9.21 11/26/2013 8:00 PM, 62 C,OFF,10.41
We need to break up the unholy alliance between the Chinese miners and Core / Blockstream.
We signed up for a grand experiment that would be controlled by math and not by men. Now we've had a year where the community is coming apart at the seams and today top dev Mike Hearn is selling his coins and abandoning the project. Are we going to let Bitcoin be killed by 10 miners with cheap electricity & cooling behind the Great Firewall of China and a private company which wants to cripple our code by limiting space on the blockchain and adding double-spends and high fees? I'm really trying seriously here to put my finger on the main problems that are causing this whole Bitcoin thing to spin out of control. I think the two biggest problems are: (1) the concentration of most hashpower behind the Great Firewall of China, (2) allowing Blockstream to hijack Satoshi's codebase, so that they could:
artificially limit space on the blockchain (the 1 MB max blocksize), and
add support for double-spending unconfirmed transactions (RBF)
...both of which are essential for their flagship vaporware product Lightning Network. Analyzing these two problems in more detail: (1) Most hashpower is behind the Great Firewall of China Most hashpower is concentrated in China, behind what is essentially a network partition (or at least a major speed bump) on the global network topology: the Great Firewall of China. So if blocks got really big, the miners outside of China might actually suffer more, not the miners inside China (who have pretty decent bandwidth amongst themselves). (If you've already heard a million times about US jobs being exported to China, you can skip down to the next section - the short section starting with a sentence in bold saying "Wouldn't it be ironic..."). Now for a bit of economic background that most people know but I wanted to just review it here. As we know, countries such as the USA used to have a solid domestic manufacturing base. But then the power elite in the USA discovered that it was easier to fire more-expensive US workers and let underpaid Chinese workers breathing smog produce cheaper (ie, lower-price and often lower-quality) versions of those same goods - and then the Fed could just print up unlimited little pieces of paper (fiat US Dollars) to import all that stuff to the USA. Paying workers decent wages and keeping the air breathable would have been expensive, but the Chinese have evidently shown they're fine with sacrificing those things. So now:
lots of what used to be made in the US is now made in China,
Anyways, most people know about this outsourcing and money-printing situation I've just described, but I mentioned it here as a lead-in to suggest a weird ironic point about mining in China (in bold at the start of the next, short section below). As we also know, the world finally has real money now: Bitcoin. It's "real" because it's not infinitely printable by private central bankers who inject it into the economy as usurious debt, and because, like gold, its value doesn't depend on any "counterparty": you simply hold your value yourself, and verify it yourself - assuming you have enough bandwidth to run a full a/k/a verifying node. So, I'll finally give the weird ironic point I've been building up to: Wouldn't it be ironic if - now that we finally have "real", quality money - we let its "manufacturing" (issuance, mining) be outsourced to China? Because that looks like what we've actually been doing here. Plus, maybe in some un-apparent, heretofore un-considered sense, the Great Firewall of China really might be the ultimate form of "capital control". Forget all those articles you read on ZeroHedge about billions about dollars being smuggled out of China via Macau, with people strapping little bundles of cash to their bodies under their clothes: http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2014-03-15/how-smuggle-money-out-china What if the real massive hemorrhaging of capital which the Chinese authorities are worried about is Bitcoin itself - and what if that's the main reason why they're gonna make sure they keep the Great Firewall of China in place - to keep billions (and maybe someday trillions?) of dollars in Bitcoins inside China? I don't think Satoshi took the Great Firewall of China into account in his planning. I think he just assumed there would be one globally connected internet, with no top-level partitions. So here's some things to think about:
From what I'm told, the Chinese work hard and they're wild about saving money - they have trillions of dollars in T-Bills, and a lot of them are into gold. In the aggregate, the country is swimming in various forms of wealth.
Also: their government has strict capital controls in place to try to prevent people from expatriating vast sums of wealth out of China.
And finally: many Chinese want real money. They know the dollar or the yuan could crash, so they want something which has no counterparty risk (like gold or bitcoin).
So I'd be curious to know who the buyers really are for all the bitcoins currently being "cheaply" manufactured in China. Do bitcoins mined in China stay in China - or do they get sold to the rest of the world? I would guess that most early Bitcoin adopters with large hodlings who got in when it was really cheap were probably Westerners (assuming that early news about Bitcoin was more available in the West). But now, while Bitcoin is "still" in the USD 400s (which could be cheap, if it survives long-term) - I wonder who the main buyers are these days? Is it people like Blythe Masters and other bankers who are sitting on billions of USD - or is it the Chinese who are also sitting on billions of USD as well? (Or: Why not both?) One group I'm pretty sure isn't buying up lots of bitcoins: "average Americans". Why? Because they're too broke. Since Nixon unlinked the USDollar from gold im 1971, Americans have been getting screwed by insidious inflation and all the debt bubbles which formed around all the essentials in life (the housing debt bubble, the student loan debt bubble, the healthcare and pharma debt bubble, and the credit bubble which fuels all the others). Most Americans don't have enough cash to survive for more than a few weeks, and most can't even afford to take sick days or parental leave from work. The only people who have money are the ones near the printing presses: the bankers and their buddies. There's certainly massive volume on several of the Chinese exchanges - although most people over on /BitcoinMarkets claim that it's all "faked" (mainly because there's no fees on those exchanges, so a lot of those trades could be "wash trades"). So, maybe the Chinese themselves are actually buying up a lot of those freshly-mined bitcoins, in China, using the trillions of dollars of T-Bills sloshing around in their system over there? (And remember where those T-Bills ultimately came from: US Dollars which the USA printed up to buy cheap goods produced by Chinese slaves breathing smog.) So - and here's my point again: Wouldn't it be ironic - now that the world finally has real, quality money - if we were actually currently outsourcing all of its production to China - and they (plus a handful of scattered bankers) are the ones who all buying up the first real asset the world has ever known, during its current "mid-priced" phase? (2) Core / Blockstream / Peter Todd / Theymos / max blocksize / RBF / LN Where to begin? I'm sure you all know the story. Just a few reminders about RBF terminology: (a) There are two orthogonal "axes" or "dimensions" to the whole RBF terminology (but some people get this wrong - I have no idea if it's intentionally or accidentally):
"Opt-In" vs "On-By-Default": This means what it says: for each transaction, you either enable RBF, or you don't:
"Opt-In" means the sender has to enable RBF for a particular transaction (ie: it's off-by-default)
"On-By-Default" would mean that RBF is "always on" but the sender could disable it for a particular transaction.
"Full" vs "FSS":
"Full" means the sender can change everything about the transaction: not only the fee but also the amount and the recipient.
"FSS" stands for "First Seen Safe" (by the way, where do the pinheads over at Core even get this retarded non-descriptive terminology anyways: FSS, RBF??). FSS means that the sender can alter only the fee - the amount and the recipient cannot be changed.
So, which combo of the above is Peter Todd / Core currently trying to force on users? Opt-In Full RBF I reviewed the terminology here to pre-emptively shut up the liars who often pop into these threads spreading FUD like "But it's only Opt-In so it's not really Full". That is simply wrong and I'm tired of them conflating those two orthogonal (ie independent) dimensions of the terminology. And oh yeah, another thing: I have heard plenty of rumors that the long-term plan (from the traitors at Core / Blockstream) is to eventually (stealthily) force the worst form of RBF on everyone: On-By-Default Full RBF But that will come later - once the frogs being slowly boiled (us, the victims of Blockstream's hijacking of Satoshi's code) have gradually gotten acclimated to "Opt-In Full RBF". Anyways, now that that's out of the way, let's talk about some other things regarding RBF: Yes we know, we know: Peter is "merely" adding something which any hacker or malicious user could have added anyways (if they modded the code, or if they tried really hard to misuse it). But there's plenty of stuff which anybody do by modding the code. For example - anyone could change the code so that it accepts a different block size. (In fact, BU is mainly about making this easy for users - instead of making double-spending easy for users like RBF does.) So the "convenience barrier" is an important factor helping shape what most users do with the code. If a feature isn't already in the code, most users don't bother modding the C/C++ code and recompiling it and adding it. (Which is one reason why zero-conf has worked pretty well for so long - another reason being that in face-to-face retail, the retailer kinda does KYC already - ie, they literally "know their customer" to a certain degree - so certain social pressures and norms such as reputation do come into play - but Peter Todd doesn't really believe in those things, as we know.) Now, Theymos / Core / Blockstream keep screaming that it would be taboo to mod the code so that it would accept bigger blocks. But when Blockstream wants mod the code so that it allows double-spending unconfirmed transactions - well, in it goes. That's because the real reason they're so gung-ho to get Full RBF added is because LN needs Full RBF in order to be able to work. So... when certain people say "we need to allow confused users to be able to unstuck their transactions", they're lying. The liars at Blockstream don't care about users, and they don't care about miners. They want to rip off users (making them pay massive fees for space on an artificially tiny blockchain) and then in a double-whammy they want to rip off miners as well (stealing fees from those miners, via LN). Attention Bitcoin users and miners: Core / Blockstream don't care about you, and they're willing to lie to you in order to rip you off. As Mike Hearn mentioned in his farewell essay today, Blockstream CTO Gregory Maxwell once "mathematically proved" that Bitcoin could not exist. And Blockstream founder Adam Back missed the boat on being an early adopter of Bitcoin, because when he first heard about it years ago, he also didn't think it would work. And the gullible Chinese miners are running software from these liars at Blockstream who don't believe in Bitcoin who are sabotaging Satoshi's code to decrease user adoption (and price)) and eventually steal miners' fees. If miners continue to blindly follow Core / Blockstream, it's going to hurt the miners themselves.
The Nine Miners of China: "Core is a red herring. Miners have alternative code they can run today that will solve the problem. Choosing not to run it is their fault, and could leave them with warehouses full of expensive heating units and income paid in worthless coins." – tsontar
https://np.reddit.com/btc/comments/3xhejm/the_nine_miners_of_china_core_is_a_red_herring/ And users who are still gullible enough to adopt a decentralized currency and then read about it on centralized censored forums controlled by some dweeb named Theymos are also going along with this. Anyways, that's my rant for today. Summary / Conclusions - plus a possible "nuclear" option (see the bold part below!) The main obstacles which Bitcoin needs to get around now are:
the concentration of hashpower behind the Great Firewall in China
the adoption of Peter Todd's RBF which would provide a GUI telling users they can and should double-spend or reverse transactions which haven't been confirmed on the blockchain yet
allowing Core / Blockstream to artificially limit space on the blockchain - which drives up user fees, clogs the network, and supports their LN vaporware (which would also steal fees from miners)
if you signed up for a decentralized permissionless currency and you're happy to read about it on a centralized censored website owned by Theymos (/bitcoin, bitcointalk.org), then you're doing it wrong.
These things were not what Satoshi envisioned, and I suggest we focus on trying to figure out how to get around them. Solutions which de-emphasize the importance of Chinese miners might be important. If their blind obedience to Core / Blockstream is one of the main factors killing Bitcoin, then why should we protect them? Maybe if we're going to hard-fork, we shouldn't just bump up the max blocksize - maybe we should also invoke the nuclear option and change the PoW algorithm to bump the Chinese miners off the network. Because, the whole story about needing small blocks "so that Luke-Jr with his shitty internet can stay on the network" is another lie being peddled by Blockstream. The real reason was identified by Gavin:
"The physical bottleneck on the network today is not bandwidth to people's homes, it is the Great Firewall of China."
https://np.reddit.com/btc/comments/40kmny/bitpays_adaptive_block_size_limit_is_my_favorite/ So, if the Chinese are willing to throw Bitcoin under the bus for their short-term profits (and Core / Blockstream currently helping them).. then maybe we should be willing to throw the Chinese miners under the bus now for the long-term success of Bitcoin. And, regarding Core / Blockstream, I we're actually making good progress towards routing around their damage - because if coders don't give users the code they want, those coders eventually get left by the wayside - and this is starting to happen now. We already have several repos, (Classic, BU, XT) all of which will add some form of "max blocksize" increase. I wouldn't be surprised if some of those repos might also decide to omit RBF. The new Bitcoin repos can easily cherry-pick features from "Core" which they did and didn't like - and they're going to have to compete to gain users. So "max blocksize" is definitely going to increase. And RBF could be abandoned in the garbage heap of history, another curious bit of vandalism which gave Peter Todd another 15 minutes of fame and drama, and then the rest of the world moved on and got back to business. And finally, regarding Theymos: he's gonna lose his power eventually. He's already lost a lot. Plus he's sloppy and careless and one of his screw-ups will eventually be his undoing. In the meantime, remember that it's easy to route around him on Reddit, by using a multi: https://np.reddit.com/Bitcoin+bitcoinxt+bitcoin_uncensored+btc/
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