I recently recounted the history of the block size controversy for someone and thought I'd repost it here
Bitcoin development was initially led by an anonymous figure named Satoshi Nakamoto who created the project "Bitcoin: a Peer-to-peer Electronic Cash System" The project mostly languished in obscurity until in late 2010 it was revealed that Bitcoin was being used to evade the ban on Wikileaks contributions. (A good summary of Bitcoin's early history can be found here.) Satoshi was opposed to Bitcoin being used for something as controversial as funding Wikileaks, and in one of his last messages, wrote "It would have been nice to get this attention in any other context. WikiLeaks has kicked the hornet's nest, and the swarm is headed towards us." (link). Satoshi vanished shortly thereafter. When Satoshi disappeared, he left the project effectively in the control of Gavin Andresen, one of the early contributors to the project. Gavin has been characterized as something of a naive academic. It wasn't long before Gavin had been approached by the CIA and agreed to visit and do a presentation. So we know that Bitcoin was on the CIA's radar by 2011. Bitcoin-as-introduced had an Achilles heel. To prevent a specific kind of denial-of-service attack, Satoshi had added a "block size limit" to prevent flooding attacks. Satoshi's plan was to raise the limit as usage increased. Satoshi and the early Bitcoiners such as myself did not envision that the limit might itself be a vulnerability. A near-complete history of the block size limit controversy is here. I'll attempt to summarize my experience with some references. Now it's almost 2020, and by now we've all become much more attuned to the scope of what three-letter-agencies have been doing to manipulate social media platforms. But in 2012 that was tinfoil-hat stuff across most of the internet. In 2012, the Bitcoin subreddit was one of the key places people went for discussion about what was happening in Bitcoin. That, and the bitcointalk forum. The history of what happened has been well documented with sources in places like here and here. The TLDR is
"Theymos" gains control of bitcoin and bitcointalk
Theymos receives a 6000 BTC donation (worth in the low millions of dollars at the time) to develop new forum software. No software is developed.
a company is created, "Blockstream" whose mission depends on keeping Bitcoin's block size limit in place. Blockstream ostensibly plans to sell alternatives to using the Bitcoin blockchain when the blockchain becomes unusable due to congestion. Strangely, those alternatives all look suspiciously like "banking."
(2014) Trolling on social media pivots from "anti-Bitcoin" to "anti-raising-the-block-size-limit". Obstruction to raising the limit suddenly a serious conflict within Bitcoin Core development.
(2015) MIT Media Labs' Digital Currency Initiative hires Gavin Andresen and Wladimir van der Laan. Gavin and Wladimir are the two Core developers who have final authority over the Bitcoin Core software.
(2015) Gavin Andresen and Mike Hearn become the leaders of a counter-Blockstream movement called Bitcoin XT. XT was a new Bitcoin client that would cause the block size to be raised if enough people used it.
(2015) Theymos famously begins banning everyone from Bitcoin who supports Bitcoin XT, or who speaks out in favor of raising the block size, or questions the moderation policy, etc. This temporary measure continues to this day.
(2015) Banned OG Bitcoiners try to raise awareness by creating an uncensored subreddit btc to expose the apparent takeover of the Bitcoin project by Blockstream
(2017) a compromise (bait-and-switch) is suddenly proposed from nowhere and suddenly gains widespread support: Segwit2X. This will raise the block size limit by 2X, but only after Segwit is activated. Segwit activates, but support for the 2X block size limit increase quickly evaporates.
Throughout all of this, Blockstream steadfastly argued that it didn't control the Bitcoin Core software. Blockstream pointed to Chaincode Labs who funded several key bitcoin developers and the MIT Media Labs "Digital Currency Initiative" who funded Gavin, Cory, and Wladimir. Gavin and Wladimir in particular had the authority to merge changes into the Bitcoin Core software and as such effectively could decide what did and did not go into the software. As an ostensibly academic organization, Gavin and Wladimir etc could act with intellectual honesty and without coercion. Except Gavin left the Digital Currency Initiative in 2017, saying that while he wasn't pressured to quit, he "didn't want to feel obligated to any person or organization." Fast forward to 2019, and we learn the fascinating news that the MIT Media Labs were funded in part by none other than Jeffrey Epstein, who it turns out just so happened to be a staunch advocate of the Blockstream approach. So really, Bitcoin development was corralled: Blockstream was paying a bunch of devs, and Blockstream-Friendly MIT Media Labs were paying the others. If you're still reading this, you probably wonder what it is about the Blockstream strategy that is so "bad." Aren't they just proposing a different way to solve Bitcoin's problems? The original idea for Bitcoin was a "peer to peer cash system" - - the idea being that if Alice wants to buy something from Bob, she can just give him some tokens - - just like cash. The new vision of bitcoin promoted by Blockstream and Core is "store of value". Under this model, you buy Bitcoins like you might speculate on gold - you buy some and you hold it. Later, if you want to purchase something, you sell your Bitcoins for some other payment method (or use an IOU against a deposit, just like a bank), and use that for purchases. It should be apparent after a moment of thought that the original concept (Alice hands Bob some cash which Bob can then spend how he likes) is vastly more disruptive than the model in which Alice buys Bitcoin on a government-regulated exchange, holds them hoping they'll appreciate in value, and then sells them for Euros or dollars. In model one, the currency is essentially outside the domain of gatekeepers, and could completely disintermediate the entire existing financial system just like Napster for money. In model two, Bitcoin is no more disruptive than shares of a gold fund.
Hello again. It's been a while. People have been emailing me about once a week or so for the last year to ask if I'm coming back to Bitcoin now that Bitcoin Cash exists. And a couple of weeks ago I was summoned on a thread called "Ask Mike Hearn Anything", but that was nothing to do with me and I was on holiday in Japan at the time. So I figured I should just answer all the different questions and answers in one place rather than keep doing it individually over email. Firstly, thanks for the kind words on this sub. I don't take part anymore but I still visit occasionally to see what people are talking about, and the people posting nice messages is a pleasant change from three years ago. Secondly, who am I? Some new Bitcoiners might not know. I am Satoshi. Just kidding. I'm not Satoshi. I was a Bitcoin developer for about five years, from 2010-2015. I was also one of the first Bitcoin users, sending my first coins in April 2009 (to SN), about 4 months after the genesis block. I worked on various things:
My main effort was an implementation of a Java library called bitcoinj. This was the engine used in the first p2p mobile wallet ("Bitcoin Wallet for Android"), and the first p2p desktop wallet that was faster to run than Bitcoin [Core] itself (MultiBit). These together were responsible for around 2.5 million user installs at a time when downloading the full block chain was becoming too slow for normal users to tolerate and the only alternative was a "bitbank" or cloud-hosted wallet. It was used in the first trustless gambling site (SatoshiDice), over 100 products and projects, and many academic research papers.
With Gavin Andresen and others I designed some upgrades to the Bitcoin protocol like Bloom filtering and BIP70.
With Matt Corrallo I implemented and demonstrated the first version of (micro)payment channels. I put together a demo of a file server that charged micropayments using a GUI called Payfile (mentioned in New Scientist here). I used to have a video of this but unfortunately it no longer seems to be on YouTube. Payment channels went on to be used in the design of the Lightning Network.
You can see a trend here - I was always interested in developing peer to peer decentralised applications that used Bitcoin. But what I'm best known for is my role in the block size debate/civil war, documented by Nathaniel Popper in the New York Times. I spent most of 2015 writing extensively about why various proposals from the small-block/Blockstream faction weren't going to work (e.g. on replace by fee, lightning network, what would occur if no hard fork happened, soft forks, scaling conferences etc). After Blockstream successfully took over Bitcoin Core and expelled anyone who opposed them, Gavin and I forked Bitcoin Core to create Bitcoin XT, the first alternative node implementation to gain any serious usage. The creation of XT led to the imposition of censorship across all Bitcoin discussion forums and news outlets, resulted in the creation of this sub, and Core supporters paid a botnet operator to force XT nodes offline with DDoS attacks. They also convinced the miners and wider community to do nothing for years, resulting in the eventual overload of the main network. I left the project at the start of 2016, documenting my reasons and what I expected to happen in my final essay on Bitcoin in which I said I considered it a failed experiment. Along with the article in the New York Times this pierced the censorship, made the wider world aware of what was going on, and thus my last gift to the community was a 20% drop in price (it soon recovered).
The last two years
Left Bitcoin ... but not decentralisation. After all that went down I started a new project called Corda. You can think of Corda as Bitcoin++, but modified for industrial use cases where a decentralised p2p database is more immediately useful than a new coin. Corda incorporates many ideas I had back when I was working on Bitcoin but couldn't implement due to lack of time, resources, because of ideological wars or because they were too technically radical for the community. So even though it's doesn't provide a new cryptocurrency out of the box, it might be interesting for the Bitcoin Cash community to study anyway. By resigning myself to Bitcoin's fate and joining R3 I could go back to the drawing board and design with a lot more freedom, creating something inspired by Bitcoin's protocol but incorporating all the experience we gained writing Bitcoin apps over the years. The most common question I'm asked is whether I'd come back and work on Bitcoin again. The obvious followup question is - come back and work on what? If you want to see some of the ideas I'd have been exploring if things had worked out differently, go read the Corda tech white paper. Here's a few of the things it might be worth asking about:
Corda's data model is a UTXO ledger, like Bitcoin. Outputs in Corda (called "states") can be arbitrary data structures instead of just coin amounts, so you don't need hacks like coloured coins anymore. You can track arbitrary fungible assets, but you can also model things like the state of a loan, deal, purchase order, crate of cargo etc.
Transactions are structured as Merkle trees.
Corda has a compound key format that can represent more flexible conditions than CHECKMULTISIG can.
Smart contracts are stateless predicates like in Bitcoin, but you can loop like in Ethereum. Unlike Bitcoin and Ethereum we do not invent our own VM or languages.
Transactions can have files attached to them. Smart contracts in Corda are stored in attachments and referenced by hash, so large programs aren't duplicated inside every transaction.
The P2P network is encrypted.
Back in 2014 I wrote that Bitcoin needed a store and forward network, to make app dev easier, and to improve privacy. Corda doesn't have a store and forward network - Corda is a store and forward network.
It has a "flow framework" that makes structured back-and-forth conversations very easy to program. This makes protocols like payment channelss a lot quicker and easier to implement, and would have made Lighthouse much more straightforward. A big part of my goal with Corda was to simplify the act of building complicated decentralised applications, based on those Bitcoin experiences. Lighthouse took about 8 months of full time work to build, but it's pretty spartan anyway. That's because Bitcoin offers almost nothing to developers who want to build P2P apps that go beyond simple payments. Corda does.
The flow framework lets you do hard things quickly. For example, we took part in a competition called Project Ubin, the goal of which was to develop something vaguely analogous in complexity to the Lightning Network or original Ripple (decentralised net-out of debts). But we had about six weeks and one developer. We successfully did that in the time allowed. Compare that to dev time for the Lightning Network.
Corda scales a lot better than Bitcoin, even though Bitcoin could have scaled to the levels needed for large payment networks with enough work and time. It has something similar to what Ethereum calls "sharding". This is possible partly because Corda doesn't use proof of work.
It has a mechanism for signalling the equivalent of hard forks.
It provides much better privacy. Whilst it supports techniques like address randomisation, it also doesn't use global broadcast and we are working on encrypting the entire ledger using Intel SGX, such that no human has access to the raw unencrypted data and such that it's transparent to application developers (i.e. no need to design custom zero knowledge proofs)
WARNING: If you try to use the Lightning Network you are at extremely HIGH RISK of losing funds and is not recommended or safe to do at this time or for the foreseeable future (274 points, 168 comments)
The guy who won this week's MillionaireMakers drawing has received ~$55 in BCH and ~$30 in BTC. It will cost him less than $0.01 to move the BCH, but $6.16 (20%) in fees to move the BTC. (164 points, 100 comments)
Do you think Bitcoin needs to increase the block size? You're in luck! It already did: Bitcoin BCH. Avoid the upcoming controversial BTC block size debate by trading your broken Bitcoin BTC for upgraded Bitcoin BCH now. (209 points, 194 comments)
Master list of evidence regarding Bitcoin's hijacking and takeover by Blockstream (185 points, 113 comments)
PSA: BTC not working so great? Bitcoin upgraded in 2017. The upgraded Bitcoin is called BCH. There's still time to upgrade! (185 points, 192 comments)
This sub is the only sub in all of Reddit that allows truly uncensored discussion of BTC. If it turns out that most of that uncensored discussion is negative, DON'T BLAME US. (143 points, 205 comments)
211 points: fireduck's comment in John Mcafee on the run from IRS Tax Evasion charges, running 2020 Presidential Campaign from Venezuela in Exile
203 points: WalterRothbard's comment in I am a Bitcoin supporter and developer, and I'm starting to think that Bitcoin Cash could be better, but I have some concerns, is anyone willing to discuss them?
163 points: YourBodyIsBCHn's comment in I made this account specifically to tip in nsfw/gonewild subreddits
161 points: BeijingBitcoins's comment in Last night's BCH & BTC meetups in Tokyo were both at the same restaurant (Two Dogs). We joined forces for this group photo!
156 points: hawks5999's comment in You can’t make this stuff up. This is how BTC supporters actually think. From bitcoin: “What you can do to make BTC better: check twice if you really need to use it!” 🤦🏻♂️
155 points: lowstrife's comment in Steve Wozniak Sold His Bitcoin at Its Peak $20,000 Valuation
151 points: kdawgud's comment in The government is taking away basic freedoms we each deserve
147 points: m4ktub1st's comment in BCH suffered a 51% attack by colluding miners to re-org the chain in order to reverse transactions - why is nobody talking about this? Dangerous precident
147 points: todu's comment in Why I'm not a fan of the SV community: My recent bill for defending their frivolous lawsuit against open source software developers.
Newbs might not know this, but bitcoin recently came out of an intense internal drama. Between July 2015 and August 2017 bitcoin was attacked by external forces who were hoping to destroy the very properties that made bitcoin valuable in the first place. This culminated in the creation of segwit and the UASF (user activated soft fork) movement. The UASF was successful, segwit was added to bitcoin and with that the anti-decentralization side left bitcoin altogether and created their own altcoin called bcash. Bitcoin's price was $2500, soon after segwit was activated the price doubled to $5000 and continued rising until a top of $20000 before correcting to where we are today. During this drama, I took time away from writing open source code to help educate and argue on reddit, twitter and other social media. I came up with a reading list for quickly copypasting things. It may be interesting today for newbs or anyone who wants a history lesson on what exactly happened during those two years when bitcoin's very existence as a decentralized low-trust currency was questioned. Now the fight has essentially been won, I try not to comment on reddit that much anymore. There's nothing left to do except wait for Lightning and similar tech to become mature (or better yet, help code it and test it) In this thread you can learn about block sizes, latency, decentralization, segwit, ASICBOOST, lightning network and all the other issues that were debated endlessly for over two years. So when someone tries to get you to invest in bcash, remind them of the time they supported Bitcoin Unlimited. For more threads like this see UASF
There are multiple reddit users like mrxsdcuqr7x284k6 claiming or implying in this thread that Bitcoin's huge loss of market share is not a result of the Bitcoin Core small block policy. I don't know what the exact market share of Bitcoin would be right now if Bitcoin was not successfully derailed by people like Greg Maxwell & Theymos who fought hard to stop even small block size increases. What I do know is that the huge loss of market share Bitcoin has undergone and the growth of other crypto currencies is largely the result of what they did. Anyone who is honest & intelligent and was around before, during and after Bitcoin lost massive market share, knows that the cause of this massive loss of market share and the growth of many other cryptos was a direct result of the artificial constraining of the transaction processing capacity of Bitcoin. This is not merely a hindsight claim. Vast numbers of Bitcoiners TOLD EVERYONE that this is what would happen if the block size was not increased. The only people who didn't see this coming (or claimed they didn't see it coming) are the Bitcoin Core supporters from that time who promoted Greg Maxwell's alternative design for Bitcoin.
We don’t expect fees to get as high as the highest seen in this table; they are just provided for reference.
What is the highest listed fee in the table? $0.756 What were the highest median fees during December of 2017? OVER $30 Over just the last 6 months there have been multiple median fee spikes that go above this supposed "high" value of $0.756
What was the message of the Bitcoiners who wanted to follow Satoshi's plan during 2015?
Here's Mike Hearn in 2015 in an interview saying that the people that don't want to the block size to be increased want users to migrate to other system when the block size fills up. Whether the people he is referring to actually did want that or not is irrelevant. This is just one example (of 1000s that could be dug up) of Bitcoiners stating plainly that failure to bump the block size will lead to people migrating to other systems. Here is what Mike Hearn predicted would happen if the block size isn't raised:
The aftermath Bitcoin would eventually recover. Users who became frustrated at the extreme unreliability would give up and stop trying to spend their coins. Many coins would make it to an exchange wallet and stay there. Node operators would make their nodes auto-restart. SPV wallets would find some trustworthy central authority to get fee data from. Most importantly, the overload would eventually go away …. because the users would go away. The backlog would clear. Fees would fall to the minimum again. So life would go on. Bitcoin would survive. But it would have lost critical momentum. It would have become the MySpace of digital currencies. The faithful would have lost a lot of faith, and businesses that were trying to bring Bitcoin to the mainstream would “pivot” towards something else. People who were motivated by Making The World A Better Place™ would conclude the ordinary people around them would never use their products, and so they’d leave.
source There are many details in Mike's blog post that he predicted wrong, but it's clear that he knew that the Bitcoin network would be degraded because of this fully saturated, small block policy. He knew users would leave the system. Here's Jeff Garzik in 2015 warning people about the economic change event that will occur if the block size is not increased. What did Gavin Andresen say would likely happen as a result of the small block policy? He said:
If the number of transactions waiting gets large enough, the end result will be an over-saturated network, busy doing nothing productive. I don’t think that is likely– it is more likely people just stop using Bitcoin because transaction confirmation becomes increasingly unreliable.
source These are just a tiny sample of comments from prominent Bitcoiners. They are not anomalous. They are representative of what everyone fighting against this small-block policy was saying. Please don't let these ignorant fools & gaslighting snakes deceive you or others. I remember exactly what happened back then. I also know exactly what Bitcoin is and which chain is Bitcoin.
Exposed: How Bankers are trying to centralize and highjack Bitcoin by buying "supporters" and promoters (like OpenBazaar team) for the B2X (S2X/NYA) attack on Bitcoin.
*OpenBazaarwascrossed-outaftertheirS2Xsupportretraction,seeeditatbottom. These guys have deep pockets, but as you will see below, they are funded by even deeper pockets. We can't leave this to chance or "the markets to decide" when there is such a malicious intent to manipulate the markets by those powerful players. So that's why all the people saying: "Don't worry, S2X won't happen" or "S2X is DOA" need to stop, we are at a 'make-or-break' moment for Bitcoin. It's very dumb to underestimate them. If you don't know yet who those malicious players are, read below:
We need to keep exposing them everywhere. Using Garzik as a pawn now, after they failed when they bought Hearn and Andresen (Here are the corrupted former 'good guys'), they are using the old and effective 'Problem-Reaction-Solution' combined with the 'Divide & Conquer' strategies to try to hijack Bitcoin. Well, effective before the current social media era, in which hidden motives can be brought to the light of day to be exposed.
Public pressure works when your profits depend on your reputation. The social media criticism worked for companies like Open Bazaar, which after weeks of calling them out on their S2X support, they finally withdrew it. Please contact the companies on these lists if you have any type of relationship with them, we have just a few days left until the fork:
Every bitcoiner should know about what DCG (Digital Currency Group) is, and call out publicly these crooks and the people they bribed that are working for the Corporations/Bankers against Bitcoin: Brian Armstrong, Winklevoss brothers, Bobby Lee, Peter Smith, Nic Cary, Haipo Yang, Rick Falkvinge, Jon Matonis, Wences Casares, Tony Gallippi, Mike Belshe, Ryan X Charles, Brian Hoffman/Sam Patterson/Chris Pacia (and all OB1 team)(see edit at the bottom), Gavin Andresen, Jeff Garzik, Mike Hearn, Roger Ver, Jihan Wu, John Mcaffe, Craig Wright, Barry Silbert, Larry Summers, Blythe Masters, Stephen Pair, Erik Voorhees, Vinny Lingham, Olivier Janssens, Jeremy Allaire, Peter Vessenes, Bruce Wagner, Brock Pierce, Aaron Voisine/Adam Traidman/Aaron Lasher (Breadwallet team), Glenn Hutchins (Federal Reserve Board of Directors), Bill Barhydt and Jiang Zhuoer. Once people are informed, they won't be fooled (like all the poor guys at btc) and will follow Bitcoin instead of the S2X or Bcash or any other centralized altcoin they come up with disguised as Bitcoin. DCG (Digital Currency Group) is the company spearheading the Segwit2x movement. The CEO of DCG is Barry Silbert, a former investment banker, and Mastercard is an investor in DCG.
Let's have a look at the people that control DCG: http://dcg.co/who-we-are/ Three board members are listed, and one Board "Advisor." Three of the four Members/advisors are particularly interesting: Glenn Hutchins: Former Advisor to President Clinton. Hutchins sits on the board of The Federal Reserve Bank of New York, where he was reelected as a Class B director for a three-year term ending December 31, 2018. Yes, you read that correctly, currently sitting board member of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. Barry Silbert: CEO of DCG (Digital Currency Group, funded by Mastercard) who is also an Ex investment Banker at (Houlihan Lokey) And then there's the "Board Advisor," Lawrence H. Summers: "Chief Economist at the World Bank from 1991 to 1993. In 1993, Summers was appointed Undersecretary for International Affairs of the United States Department of the Treasury under the Clinton Administration. In 1995, he was promoted to Deputy Secretary of the Treasury under his long-time political mentor Robert Rubin. In 1999, he succeeded Rubin as Secretary of the Treasury. While working for the Clinton administration Summers played a leading role in the American response to the 1994 economic crisis in Mexico, the 1997 Asian financial crisis, and the Russian financial crisis. He was also influential in the American advised privatization of the economies of the post-Soviet states, and in the deregulation of the U.S financial system, including the repeal of the Glass-Steagall Act." https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lawrence_Summers Blythe Masters: Former executive at JPMorgan Chase. She is currently the CEO of Digital Asset Holdings, a financial technology firm developing distributed ledger technology for wholesale financial services. Masters is widely credited as the creator of the credit default swap as a financial instrument. She is also Chairman of the Governing Board of the Linux Foundation’s open source Hyperledger Project, member of the International Advisory Board of Santander Group, and Advisory Board Member of the US Chamber of Digital Commerce. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blythe_Masters Seriously....The segwit2x deal is being pushed through by a Company funded by Mastercard, Whose CEO Barry Silbert is ex investment banker, and the Board Members of DCG include a currently sitting member of the Board of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, and the Ex chief Economist for the World Bank and a guy responsible for the removal of Glass Steagall. It's fair to call these guys "bankers" right? So that's the Board of DCG. They're spearheading the Segwit2x movement. As far as who is responsible for development, my research led me to "Bitgo". I checked the "Money Map" https://i.redd.it/15auzwkq3hiz.png And sure enough, DCG is an investor in Bitgo. (BTW, make sure you take a good look take a look at the money map and bookmark it for reference later, ^ it is really helpful.) "Currently, development is being overseen by bitcoin security startup BitGo, with help from other developers including Bloq co-founder Jeff Garzik." https://www.coindesk.com/bitcoins-segwit2x-scaling-proposal-miners-offer-optimistic-outlook/ So Bitgo is overseeing development of Segwit2x with Jeff Garzick. Bitgo has a product/service that basically facilitates transactions and supposedly prevents double spending. It seems like their main selling point is that they insert themselves as middlemen to ensure Double spending doesn't happen, and if it does, they take the hit, of course for a fee, so it sounds sort of like the buyer protection paypal gives you: "Using the above multi-signature security model, BitGo can guarantee that transactions cannot be double spent. When BitGo co-signs a BitGo Instant transaction, BitGo takes on a financial obligation and issues a cryptographically signed guarantee on the transaction. The recipient of a BitGo Instant transaction can rest assured that in any event where the transaction is not ultimately confirmed in the blockchain, and loses money as a result, they can file a claim and will be compensated in full by BitGo." Source: https://www.bitgo.com/solutions So basically, they insert themselves as middlemen, guarantee your transaction gets confirmed and take a fee. What do we need this for though when we have a working blockchain that confirms payments in the next block already? 0-conf is safe when blocks aren't full and one confirmation should really be good enough for almost anyone on the most POW chain. So if we have a fully functional blockchain, there isn't much of a need for this service is there? They're selling protection against "The transaction not being confirmed in the Blockchain" but why wouldn't the transaction be getting confirmed in the blockchain? Every transaction should be getting confirmed, that's how Bitcoin works. So in what situation does "protection against the transaction not being confirmed in the blockchain" have value? Is it possible that the Central Bankers that control development of Segwit2x plan to restrict block size to benefit their business model just like our good friends over at Blockstream attempted to do, although unsuccessfully as they were not able to deliver a working L2 in time? It looks like Blockstream was an attempted corporate takeover to restrict block size and push people onto their L2, essentially stealing business away from miners. They seem to have failed, but now it almost seems like the Segwit2x might be a culmination of a very similar problem. Also worth noting these two things, pointed out by Adrian-x:
So segwit2x takes power away from core, but then gives it to guess who...Mastercard and central bankers. So, to recap:
DCG's Board of Directors and Advisors is almost entirely made up of Central Bankers including one currently sitting Member of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and another who was Chief Economist at the World Bank.
The CEO of the company spearheading the Segwit2x movement (Barry Silbert) is an ex investment banker at Houlihan Lokey. Also, Mastercard is an investor in the company DCG, which Barry Silbert is the CEO of.
The company overseeing development on Segwit2x, Bitgo, has a product/service that seems to only have utility if transacting on chain and using 0-Conf is inefficient or unreliable.
Segwit2x takes power over Bitcoin development from core, but then literally gives it to central bankers and Mastercard. If segwit2x goes through, BTC development will quite literally be controlled by central bankers and a currently serving member of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
Real-life evidence of the breadown of Bitcoin's (BTC) security model.
This post presents a simple procedure that permits: 1) the invalidation of a transaction recently sent by a payer to a payee, and; 2) the clawback of the coins associated with the transaction. This proof allows us to infer the following: a) Corecoin/SegWitcoin's trustlessness model is irremediably crippled. In this post, we call Corecoin/Segwitcoin the version of Bitcoin forcibly and probably intentionally degraded by a Blockstream-influenced developer group (for those who know about the politics of Bitcoin repository, you know I am being polite) b) The current crippled version of Bitcoin is unusable/untrustworthy for on-chain exchange-of-value (a critical property of money). c) Any contraption that does not display a critical property of money is not money. Q.E.D.: **Corecoin/Segwitcoin is not money.** Any investment made under the belief that Bitcoin is money is unsound and should be reconsidered. The effect of this discovery on the fiat value of Bitcoin (in USD or Euros) is yet to be quantified. ///////////////////////////// (long-read begins here, skip to DEMONSTRATION below if you are in a rush)
If we wanted to completely explain the reasoning underpinning every assertion of this demonstration, this post should be several thousands of words long. Therefore we will provide ample references throughout, and will leave it to the reader to fill in some blanks and discuss any flaws in the comments section. We are fully aware there are ample opportunities for nit-picking. C'est la vie. btw English is my 3rd spoken language, laugh with me of my flaws. About Zero-Confirmation transactions (0-conf) The original version of Bitcoin allowed for so-called "0-conf transactions". Although far from being perfectly secure, they allowed for the convenient and quick exchange of value between parties, at a reasonably and acceptable low risk, akin to that of currency forgery, in-person fraud and third-party processors charge backs. Here is a pertinent thread where Satoshi discusses this feature:
The 2 main features of 0-confirmation are: 1) A payer can spend his own change right away 2) Miners "generally" enforce "first-seen" policy - Optional, but they have an incentive to do so, and it's been indirectly but clearly demonstrated by some Peter Todd shenanigans with a Chinese miner. Political bonus: Gavin Andresen and Tom Harding had devised a way to increase the security of 0-conf, but it was rejected by the Blockstream-influenced repository maintainers. Suggested reading: On Zero Confirmation Transactions https://chrispacia.wordpress.com/2015/11/29/on-zero-confirmation-transactions/ About Replace by fee transaction (RBF) After the briefly described political fiasco (above), Peter Todd managed to get RBF committed into the Bitcoin code. The thinking goes like this "The miners are rational profit maximizers: let them accept higher fees if people are offering it". That was the end of 0-conf in Corecoin/Segwitcoin. Political bonus: It was at this point that Gavin Andresen and Mike Hearn were shunned and for all intent and purposes excluded from providing any meaningful development work for Bitcoin Core. A "standard operating procedure" still to this day: toe the party line, and you are made "incommunicado". Very convenient when Blocstream partisans "demonstrate" the absence of evidence of centralised control of the repository. Typical rebuttal example: https://medium.com/@whalecalls/fud-or-fact-blockstream-inc-is-the-main-force-behind-bitcoin-and-taken-over-160aed93c003 What a bunch of bozos. Remember folks: Absence of evidence =/= Evidence of absence! /////////////////////////////
PRELUDE TO THE DEMO
The preceding section introduced a way to "double spend" a coin before its associated transaction is included in a block by a miner (RBF). Originally this "attack" vector also had a time constraint: since 95%+ of transactions were pickep-up in the very next block, speed was of the essence for the attacker. Not anymore. Why? Nowadays, it is not unusual for the mempool backlog to stay for extended periods of time above 40,000 transactions, with recent peaks way above 200,000 transactions. Assuming 2,500 transactions per block, this represents a backlog of 16 to 80 blocks. Naively assuming an even distribution of fees, the time required to process a transaction with an average fee is therefore 80 to 400 minutes + processing of incoming transactions. So: 80 to 400 minutes is an absolute best-case scenario (only a backlog, no incoming transacions). We could pull our fancy pencil and produce a detailled granulometry, but here it's not the point, the point is: 80 to 400 minutes is a long time, and most likely it will be days. I hope we all agree that a span of 80 minutes to several days is a long time to conduct an attack! Bonus: I will spare you the story about the extension of the mempool's expiring delay, another blatant proof of Core's failure. To witness the memory pool fiasco on the Corecoin/Segwitcoin chain (special thanks to nullc, please google: "Jochen mempool" or "Joehoe's mempool" Remember folks: Time is money. /////////////////////////////
This post covers what happened in Decred last month. Let's get down to business and have About section at the end.
Wallet and node software version 1.2.0 has been released. Decrediton wallet highlights: improved startup experience, redesigned overview page, added basic graphs to visualize statistics and an export to CSV (helpful for tax reporting). dcrd node software highlights: significantly faster startup and compact filters to support light clients. See full release notes and downloads here, for Decrediton use 1.2.1 bugfix release. The release process has been improved. Instead of announcing a release date and trying to meet it, a Release Candidate 1 (RC1) will now be posted. After it has been tested an bugfixed with the help of the community, a second candidate (RC2) will be released. This is repeated until an RC version with no apparent bugs becomes the final release. The new process removes a ton of pressure from developers and users and gives more time for testing. As our primary consumer-facing product, Decrediton, is growing in features and complexity, more testing will be required for new releases. Politeia is "Getting close to a public beta of voting" (slack). Decred plugin merged, paywall and voting are in the testing stage. Ticket voting works on testnet via CLI. Trezor support got closer as Decred patch was merged. Please note this is only firmware support, to be usable it also needs wallet integration. WooCommerce Decred plugin alpha version is ready for testing. Decred.org received a new sleek exchanges page. The contributors page has been updated to add 10 new faces. Some of them are new to the project but others have been contributing for a while. Dev activity stats for April: 152 active PRs, 125 commits, 21,656 added and 10,288 deleted lines spread across 7 repositories done by 2-7 developers per repository. (chart)
Hashrate: April started at 2.0-2.7 PH/s range and seen a general increase with some big fluctuations between lows at 2.2 and new all time high above 5.2 PH/s. Nodes: there are 200 public listening and 500 normal nodes per dcred.eu as of May 1. 169 nodes already upgraded to version 1.2.0. Some 30 nodes were observed to be testing Release Candidate versions before the final release. Ticket price 30-day average has seen a steady rise to 87.5 DCR. Stake participation is solid 46.1% with 3.53 million DCR as of May 1.
Updates from Obelisk's Taek:
We got results back. They are more or less on line with the simulations I didn't realize this, but we don't get the real chips back for 3 more weeks. The ones we've been testing are hacked together into a DIP package (they are BGA chips) that really screws up the results There's a decent chance that the full bga chips perform better For the time being though, we're pretty much on track for the hashrates estimated on the website (slack, Apr 12)
And regarding the June delivery date:
We're still on track for batch 1. We've ordered most of the parts we'll need, including the chips. We've got working chips, we've got test boards, test units, test everything. We've signed manufacturers to produce everything. Obelisk is going strong. (reddit, Apr 23)
We are thankful for his updates in our #pow-mining channel and hope other ASIC manufacturers will also join. Fellow Sia miners are discussing the design of Obelisk SC1 case. Halong: B29 units are shipping. The amount of units in first batch was estimated 450-600 by our community member. Review of DragonMint B29 published, people are discussing shipping and running the miners. By surprise, Innosilicon announced the sale of D9 DecredMaster ASIC miner with specs identical to Halong B29 while being much cheaper ($6800 Inno vs $10499 Halong). Expected shipping date of the first batch is April 28-30. The company is active on their bitcointalk thread, also see our reddit. Just 9 days later Innosilicon announced second batch with delivery on May 7-11 and same price of $6800. (reddit)
Decred's Brazilian community made good progress with integrations this month.
emiliomann: On April 2nd @Rhama will launch the first BR exchange of altcoins with fiat market and totally within the laws of the Brazilian government. Decred will have the two markets DCBTC and DCBRL. It’s very difficult to fulfill all the legal requirements and get authorization to work with FIAT here.
The exchange turned out to be Profitfy. Profity is innovating by using dcrtime for their blockchain ID login via Original My. Great to see this deeper engagement with the tools that Decred provides, and not a surprise that it comes from @Rhama, who has been a community member since day one. This seems to have spurred another exchange, Braziliex, to bring forward their launch of DCBRL and DCBTC pairs, coming just 2 hours after Profitfy launched. Not stopping there,
viniciusfrias: We're excited to announce PagueCripto.com, a Brazilian crypto-to-fiat payment gateway which accepts Decred among other cryptocurrencies for Brazilians to pay daily bills, such as credit cards, energy, rent, etc, and also to make local bank transfers. Our service is both a web platform and an Android app, and as our community is relevant in Brazil, we are offering a discount coupon (50%) in service fees using DCR until May 14, 2018. Check it out at paguecripto.com and in Google Play Store. (slack)
Moving to other countries, good news from Canada:
michae2xl: Decred is now available on @ezBtcCanada, an exchange with DCCAD trading pair. From Toronto – ezbtc.ca
Eventually we hope to offer the pair in GBP and YEN as well
changenow.io, a non-custodian exchange for fast conversions, added DCR. You can see all exchanges known to support Decred in a spreadsheet maintained by snr01. Many of them are missing from coinmarketcap.
RAurelius: I think that a law firm accepting Decred is a worthy distinction from other previously publicized companies that accept Decred for typical consumer products. Legal services are severely lacking in the Crypto-sphere, so the publicity is good for everyone in this arena.
Great to see business owners reaching us directly in chat. VotoLegal is migrating from Ethereum to Decred blockchain:
emiliomann: VotoLegal, a Brazilian project that uses blockchain technology to allow election campaign funding to be transparent and that all transactions conducted are tracked and made available to the citizens, now uses dcrtime and Decred blockchain. https://twitter.com/decred_bstatus/986610826051276800 (slack)
YBF Ventures and Decred announced partnership in building a blockchain-focused development and business hub in Australia.
With the YBF Ventures partnership, Decred hopes to grow their Australian contractor network and scale their operations throughout the Asia-Pacific region. (btcmanager.com) We specifically chose Decred for a more robust corporate partnership, and it is the first time that a decentralised autonomous organisation is partnering with a ‘traditional’ organisation in such a capacity. (ybfventures.com)
Dustorf joined on the marketing front and is conducting a brand discovery analysis:
Decred is soliciting the input of our user community. In order to better understand you, what you think of Decred, and where you would like it to focus its efforts, we've come up with a short (4 minute) survey. Your input of all varieties is most appreciated https://www.surveymonkey.com/2LHK3FV
April targeted advertising report released (previous March report here). Reach @timhebel for full version. The iconic "Not Overly Scammy" t-shirt by cryptograffiti is available for purchase. For those wondering, the meme originates from @fluffypony. Some hilarious promos by @jackliv3r: onetwothree.
Community event at YBF Ventures in Australia. Meetup in Wroclaw, Poland. BBQ with @scalarcapital team in Austin, USA. Blockchain Expo in London, UK. Decred was well represented at this large-scale industry event. Project Lead Jake took part in several interview and the Decred stand manned by community members was flooded with inquisitive visitors. (video, photo 123) First Decred meetup in Hangzhou, China. (slack) Business of Blockchain at MIT Media Lab in Cambridge, USA. Presentation: Blockchain Sovereignty and Blockchain Integration for Businesses by Jake Yocom-Piatt. (event, reddit, photo 123) Cambridge Blockchain Meetup in Cambridge, USA. Talk: Cutting the Head off the Snake by Jake Yocom-Piatt. (event, photo 123) Upcoming events:
Madison Blockchain Meetup in Madison, USA on May 21
Second episode of Lightning Network educational series is out, exploring topics such as payment channels, onion routing, centralization risk, and challenges that still lie ahead. (youtube) A user’s perspective and introduction to blockchain governance (Richard Red) The Importance of Governance: Analyzing the Aftermath of the Monero Hard Fork by Noah Pierau (btcmanager.com) The Crypto Show w/ Marco from Decred (youtube) Interview with Jake at @Blockchain_Expo by Crypto Coin Growth (youtube) Interview with Jake at @Blockchain_Expo by Cryptocurrency Academy (youtube) Alternative Blockchain Governance Systems With Jake & Kyle From Decred at @Blockchain_Expo by Crypto Disrupt (youtube) Decred Looks Ahead: An Interview with Project Lead Jake Yocom-Piatt (Exclusive) (sludgefeed.com) How Complex Bitcoin Politics Led to the Creation of Decred (btcmanager.com) Interview with Decred’s Project Lead Jake Yocom-Piatt on Crypto Ad Bans and Market Volatility (cryptoslate.com) Decred’s Jonathan Zeppettini: The Industry Is Going To Be Displacing Wall Street (blocktribune.com) On Chain VS. Off Chain Governance: The Ins And Outs (coinjournal.net) Decred: On true decentralisation, Bitcoin communities, and avoiding the ICO route [Video] (blockchaintechnology-news.com) Marco in shitcoin talk episode 54 (youtube)
Reddit highlights: A debate on Decred protocol security and attack cost, a comparison of expected and actual block production times, a write-up on distribution of powers and how Monero could benefit from a PoS governance layer, twoother threads on ASIC resistance, and one discussing different types of decentralization. Very thoughtful discussion on whether it is appropriate to use half naked photos in marketing, followed by meta-discussion how to handle very polarizing issues and unwanted contributions to the marketing efforts of a decentralized project. (slack, continued) A new #governance channel was created to discuss governance in Decred and other projects. politeia subreddit was recovered for Decred community. Thanks to Tivra for filing the request. Politeia can bring a lot of value outside Decred so it well deserves its own sub. A new Slack invite page has been setup and onboarded 40 people in 48 hours. Decred StackExchange site proposal was closed due to inactivity in a 7 day period, according to Area 51 rules.
In April Decred showed a confident recovery after previous months. DCUSD moved from below $40 to nearly $90 and the more liquid DCBTC from 0.0058 to 0.0093. OOOBTC showed unexpectedly huge DCR trading volume of $19 m on April 10 (reddit), it went back to normal 2 weeks later. On April 25 a wild rush took the price from 0.00777 to 0.0177 BTC in under 30 minutes on Poloniex, setting a new USD all time high of ~$165 ($141 world average). Prices on other exchanges followed to a lesser degree. Possible causes were discussed on reddit. Talking about all time highs, an indicator tracking difference between ATH and current price shows Decred is competitive at retaining USD value.
Bittrex finally opened registrations again. ASIC debates are raging after Bitmain stealth-launched ASICs for Sia, Monero and Ethereum. Most opinions reflect on whether and how to resist ASICs, but some are recognizing the Decred way, like this excellent piece. The importance of governance is gaining recognition as well. One notable example is Mike Hearn's AMA where it was a hot topic.
About This Issue
This project was motivated by the desire to expose just how much is happening in Decred and save the time for people unable to actively follow our channels. It aims to cover all relevant developments with a short description and links to read further. It shows the depth of the project and the involvement of the community. We also plan to launch a newsletter and consider a shorter version if there is such a demand. This is the first issue and feedback is welcome to discover what is best for our readers. Please join our Slack and write us on #writers_room or comment directly on GitHub. Any help is welcome too. Credits (Slack names, alphabetical order): bee, jazzah, Richard-Red, snr01 and vj.
My draft for a new /r/btc FAQ explaining the split from /r/Bitcoin to new users
If /btc is going to actually compete with /Bitcoin, it needs to be just as friendly and informative to new users, especially given its position as the “non default” or “breakaway” sub. The current /btc sticky saying "Welcome to the Wiki" doesn't even have any content in it and I feel this is a bit of a wasted opportunity to create an informative resource that new users will see by default and everyone else can link to instead of retyping things over and over about the history and difference between the subs. Here's what I've written as a starting point. I've done my best to keep it as concise and relevant as possible but in all honesty it is a complicated issue and a short but effective explanation is basically impossible. I hope the community can expand/improve on it further. Quick bit about me I got into Bitcoin in October 2013, when /Bitcoin had around 40k subscribers if I remember correctly, so by now I've actually personally experienced a large portion of Bitcoin's history - including the events preceding and since the creation of this sub. I have been an active and popular poster on /Bitcoin for almost all of that time, until the split and my subsequent banning. With the recent censorship fiasco, I'm finding I have to reiterate the same points over and over again to explain to newer users what happened with the /Bitcoin vs /btc split, questions about hard forks, what is likely to happen in the future and so on. So I put a couple of hours into writing this post to save myself the trouble in future.
There is a TL:DR; at the bottom, but it is exactly that. If you skip straight to the TL:DR; then don’t expect sympathy when you post questions that have already been covered in the lengthy and detailed main post.
New to Bitcoin?
I am totally new to Bitcoin. What is it? How does it work? Can/should I mine any? Where can I buy some? How do I get more information? All of these questions are actually really well covered in the /Bitcoin FAQ. Check it out in a new tab here. Once you've got a bit of a handle on the technology as a whole, come back here for the rest of the story.
What's the difference between /btc and /Bitcoin? What happened to create two such strongly opposed communities? Why can't I discuss /btc in /Bitcoin? Historically, the /Bitcoin subreddit was the largest and most active forum for discussing Bitcoin. As Bitcoin grew close to a cap in the number of transactions it could process, known as the 1MB block size limit, the community had differing opinions on the best way to proceed. Note that this upcoming issue was anticipated well ahead of time, with Satoshi's chosen successor to lead the project Gavin Andresen posting about it in mid 2015. Originally, there was quite a broad spread of opinions - some people favoured raising the blocksize to various extents, some people favoured implementing a variety of second layer solutions to Bitcoin, probably most people thought both could be a good idea in one form or another. This topic was unbelievably popular at the time, taking up almost every spot on the front page of /Bitcoin for weeks on end. Unfortunately, the head moderator of /Bitcoin - theymos - felt strongly enough about the issue to use his influence to manipulate the debate. His support was for the proposal of existing software (called Bitcoin Core) NOT to raise the blocksize limit past 1MB and instead rely totally on second layer solutions - especially one called Segregated Witness (or SegWit). With some incredibly convoluted logic, he decided that any different implementations of Bitcoin that could potentially raise the limit were effectively equivalent to separate cryptocurrencies like Litecoin or Ethereum and thus the block size limit or implement other scaling solutions were off-topic and ban-worthy. At the time the most popular alternative was called Bitcoin XT and was supported by experienced developers Gavin Andresen and Mike Hearn, who have since bothleft Bitcoin Core development in frustration at their marginalisation. Theymos claimed that for Bitcoin XT or any other software implementation to be relevant to /Bitcoin required "consensus", which was never well defined, despite it being seemingly impossible for everyone to agree on the merits of a new project if no one was allowed to discuss it in the first place. Anyone who didn't toe the line of his vaguely defined moderation policy was temporarily or permanently banned. There was also manipulation of the community using the following tactics - which can still be seen today:
Default thread sorting changed to "controversial" in selected threads instead of "best" like nearly every other subreddit
Comment/upvote scores hidden by default (combined with the previous point this prevented theymos and other unpopular mods like StarMaged and BashCo from ending up at the bottom of every thread they posted in)
The implementation of a custom CSS sheet that disguises long threads of [removed] comments. This was especially effective at the time as the censorship was obvious since threads were becoming wastelands of hundreds of deleted comments, similar to other Reddit throw downs like GamerGate
This created enormous uproar among users, as even many of those in favour of Bitcoin Core thought it was authoritarian to actively suppress this crucial debate. theymos would receive hundreds of downvotes whenever he posted: for example here where he gets -749 for threatening to ban prominent Bitcoin business Coinbase from the subreddit. In an extraordinary turn of events, Theymos posted a thread which received only 26% upvotes in a sample size of thousands announcing that he did not care if even 90% of users disagreed with his policy, he would not change his opinion or his moderation policy to facilitate the discussion the community wanted to have. His suggested alternative was instead for those users, however many there were, to leave. Here are Theymos' exact words, as he describes how he intends to continue moderating Bitcoin according to his own personal rules rather than the demands of the vast majority of users, who according to him clearly don't have any "real arguments" or "any brains".
Do not violate our rules just because you disagree with them. This will get you banned from /Bitcoin , and evading this ban will get you (and maybe your IP) banned from Reddit entirely. If 90% of /Bitcoin users find these policies to be intolerable, then I want these 90% of /Bitcoin users to leave. Both /Bitcoin and these people will be happier for it. I do not want these people to make threads breaking the rules, demanding change, asking for upvotes, making personal attacks against moderators, etc. Without some real argument, you're not going to convince anyone with any brains -- you're just wasting your time and ours. The temporary rules against blocksize and moderation discussion are in part designed to encourage people who should leave /Bitcoin to actually do so so that /Bitcoin can get back to the business of discussing Bitcoin news in peace.
/btc was therefore born in an environment not of voluntary departure but of forced exile. This forced migration caused two very unfortunate occurrences:
It polarised the debate around Bitcoin scaling. Previously, there was a lot of civil discussion about compromise and people with suggestions from all along the spectrum were working to find the best solution. That was no longer possible when a moderation policy would actively suppress anyone with opinions too different from Theymos. Instead it forced everyone into a "with us or against us" situation, which is why the /btc subreddit has been pushed so far in favour of the idea of a network hard fork (discussed below).
It has distracted Bitcoin from its mission of becoming a useful, global, neutral currency into a war of information. New users often find /Bitcoin and assume it to be the authoritative source of information, only to later discover that a lot of important information or debate has been invisibly removed from their view.
Since then, like any entrenched conflict, things have degenerated somewhat on both sides to name calling and strawman arguments. However, /btc remains committed to permitting free and open debate on all topics and allowing user downvotes to manage any "trolling" (as /Bitcoin used to) instead of automatic shadow-banning or heavy-handed moderator comment deletion (as /Bitcoin does now). Many users in /Bitcoin deny that censorship exists at all (it is difficult to see when anyone pointing out the censorship has their comment automatically hidden by the automoderator) or justify it as necessary removal of "trolls", which at this point now includes thousands upon thousands of current and often long-standing Bitcoin users and community members. Ongoing censorship is still rampant, partially documented in this post by John Blocke For another detailed account of this historical sequence of events, see singularity87 s posts here and here. /btc has a public moderator log as demonstration of its commitment to transparency and the limited use of moderation. /Bitcoin does not. Why is so much of the discussion in /btc about the censorship in /Bitcoin? Isn't a better solution to create a better community rather than constantly complaining? There are two answers to this question.
Over time, as /btc grows, conversation will gradually start to incorporate more information about the Bitcoin ecosystem, technology, price etc. Users are encouraged to aid this process by submitting links to relevant articles and up/downvoting on the /new and /rising tab as appropriate. However, /btc was founded effectively as a refuge for confused and angry users banned from /Bitcoin and it still needs to serve that function so at least some discussion of the censorship will probably always persist (unless there is a sudden change of moderation policy in /Bitcoin).
The single largest issue in Bitcoin right now is the current cap on the number of transactions the network can process, known as the blocksize limit. Due to the censorship in /Bitcoin, open debate of the merits of different methods of addressing this problem is impossible. As a result, the censorship of /Bitcoin (historically the most active and important Bitcoin community forum) has become by proxy the single most important topic in Bitcoin, since only by returning to open discussion would there be any hope of reaching agreement on the solution to the block size limit itself. As a topic of such central importance, there is naturally going to be a lot of threads about this until a solution is found. This is simply how Bitcoin works, that at any one time there is one key issue under discussion for lengthy periods of time (previous examples of community "hot topics" include the demise of the original Bitcoin exchange Mt Gox, the rise to a 51% majority hash rate of mining pool GHash.io and the supposed "unveiling" of Bitcoin's anonymous creator Satoshi Nakamoto).
Bitcoin Network Hard Forks
What is a hard fork? What happens if Bitcoin hard forks? A network hard fork is when a new block of transactions is published under a new set of rules that only some of the network will accept. In this case, Bitcoin diverges from a single blockchain history of transactions to two separate blockchains of the current state of the network. With any luck, the economic incentive for all users to converge quickly brings everyone together on one side of the fork, but this is not guaranteed especially since there is not a lot of historical precedent for such an event. A hard fork is necessary to raise the block size limit above its 1MB cap. Why is /btc generally in favour of a hard fork and /Bitcoin generally against? According to a lot of users on /Bitcoin - a hard fork can be characterised as an “attack” on the network. The confusion and bad press surrounding a hard fork would likely damage Bitcoin’s price and/or reputation (especially in the short term). They point to the ongoing turmoil with Ethereum as an example of the dangers of a hard fork. Most of /Bitcoin sees the stance of /btc as actively reckless, that pushing for a hard fork creates the following problems:
The possibility of an irrevocable community divergence, as has happened in Ethereum (discussed below)
The chance of introducing new code bugs by forcing a network update without totally comprehensive software developer review
The possibility of reducing decentralisation in the network as higher hardware requirements puts greater strain on network nodes and miners
According to a lot of users on /btc - a hard fork is necessary despite these risks. Most of /btc sees the stance of /Bitcoin as passively reckless, that continuing to limit Bitcoin’s blocksize while remaining inactive creates the following problems:
Transaction fees are continuously rising as transactions compete for the limited space in each block
Confirmation times for any given transaction are also increasing, especially ones without a rapidly escalating fee attached
Fee and confirmation times is making BItcoin hostile to new users, who are confused by their difficulties with this “revolutionary” new technology
Restricting Bitcoin’s growth increases the likelihood it will be overtaken by another unrestricted cryptocurrency
Passively validating the stance of /Bitcoin to continue censoring the debate about this important issue
Bitcoiners are encouraged to examine all of the information and reach their own conclusion. However, it is important to remember that Bitcoin is anopen-source projectfounded on the ideal offree market competition (between any/all software projects, currencies, monetary policies, miners, ideas etc.). In one sense, /btc vs /Bitcoin is just another extension of this, although Bitcoiners are also encouraged to keep abreast of the top posts and links on both subreddits. Only those afraid of the truth need to cut off opposing information. What do Bitcoin developers, businesses, users, miners, nodes etc. think? Developers There are developers on both sides of the debate, although it is a common argument in /Bitcoin to claim that the majority supports Bitcoin Core. This is true in the sense that Bitcoin Core is the current default and has 421 listed code contributors but misleading because not only are many of those contributors authors of a single tiny change and nothing else but also many major figures like Gavin Andresen, Mike Hearn and Jeff Garzik have left the project while still being counted as historical contributors. Businesses including exchanges etc. A definite vote of confidence is not available from the vast majority of Bitcoin businesses, and wouldn't be binding in any case. The smart decision for most businesses is to support both chains in the event of a fork until the network resolves the issue (which may only be a day or two). Users Exact user sentiment is impossible to determine, especially given the censorship on /Bitcoin. Miners and Nodes Coin.dance hosts some excellent graphical representations of the current opinion on the network. Node Support Information Miner Support Information What do I do if the network hard forks?* Do we end up with two Bitcoins? Firstly, in the event of a hard fork there is no need to panic. All Bitcoins are copied to both chains in the case of a split, so any Bitcoins you have are safe. HOWEVER, in the event of a fork there will be some period of confusion where it is important to be very careful about how/why you spend your Bitcoins. Hopefully (and most likely) this would not last long - everyone in Bitcoin is motivated to converge into agreement for everyone's benefit as soon as possible - but it's impossible to say for sure. There isn't a lot of historical data about cryptocurrency hard forks, but one example is alternative cryptocurrency Ethereum that forked into two coins after the events of the DAO and currently exists as two separate chains, ETH (Ethereum) and ETC (Ethereum Classic). The Ethereum fork is not a good analogy for Bitcoin because its network difficulty target adjusts every single block, so a massive drop in hash rate does not significantly impede its functioning. Bitcoin’s difficult target adjusts only every 2100 blocks - which under usual circumstances takes two weeks but in the event of a hard fork could be a month or more for the smaller chain. It is almost inconceivable that a minority of miners would willingly spend millions of dollars over a month or more purely on principle to maintain a chain that was less secure and processed transactions far slower than the majority chain - even assuming the Bitcoins on this handicapped chain didn't suffer a market crash to close to worthless. Secondly, a hard fork is less likely to be a traumatic event than it is often portrayed in /Bitcoin:
The Bitcoin Core and /Bitcoin stated policy is to avoid a hard fork at all costs. So there is no risk of a hard fork on that side.
The Bitcoin XT/Classic/Unlimited and /btc side is prepared for a hard fork if necessary, but it will only come to pass if a clear majority of miners (and presumably users, although that's harder to determine) are already signalling that they would be onboard. There is no exact threshold value, but no miner is going to risk publishing a block larger than 1MB until they are very confident the network will follow them.
What Happens Now
How do I check on the current status of opinion? Coin.dance hosts some excellent graphical representations of the current opinion on the network. Node Support Information Miner Support Information Users are also welcome to engage in anecdotal speculation about community opinion based on their impression of the commentary and activity in /btc and /Bitcoin. Haven't past attempts to raise the blocksize failed? There is no time limit or statute of limitations on the number of attempts the community can make to increase the block size and scale Bitcoin. Almost any innovation in the history of mankind required several attempts to get working and this is no different. The initial attempt called Bitcoin XT never got enough support for a fork because key developer Mike Hearn left out of frustration at trying to talk around all the censorship and community blockading. The second major attempt called Bitcoin Classic gained massive community momentum until it was suddenly halted by the drastic implementation of censorship by Theymos described above. The most popular attempt at the moment is called Bitcoin Unlimited. /btc is neutral and welcoming to any and all projects that want to find a solution to scaling Bitcoin - either on-or off-chain. However, many users are suspicious of Bitcoin Core's approach that involves only SegWit, developed by a private corporation called Blockstream and that has already broken its previous promises in a document known as the Hong Kong Agreement to give the network a block size limit raise client along with Segregated Witness (only the latter was delivered) . What if the stalemate is irreconcilable and nothing ever happens? Increasing transaction fees and confirmation times are constantly increasing the pressure to find a scaling solution - leading some to believe that further adoption of Bitcoin Unlimited or a successor scaling client will eventually occur. Bitcoin Core's proposed addition of SegWit is struggling to gain significant support and as it is already the default client (and not censored in /Bitcoin) it is unlikely to suddenly grow any further. If the stalemate is truly irreconcilable, eventually users frustrated by the cost, time and difficulty of Bitcoin will begin migrating to alternative cryptocurrencies. This is obviously not a desirable outcome for long standing Bitcoin supporters and holders, but cannot be ignored as the inevitable free market resort if Bitcoin remains deadlocked for long enough.
Bitcoin is at its transaction capacity and needs to scale to onboard more users
The community was discussing different ways to do this until the biased head moderator of /BitcoinTheymos got involved
Theymos, started an authoritarian censorship rampage which culminated in telling 90% of /Bitcoin users to leave. /btc is where they went. Here is the thread where it all started. Note the 26% upvoted on the original post, the hundreds of upvotes of community outcry in the comments and the graveyard of [removed] posts further down the chain. Highly recommended reading in its entirety.
To this day, /Bitcoin bans all discussion of alternative scaling proposals and /btc
Bitcoin is about freedom, and can’t function effectively with either an artificially restricted transaction cap or a main community forum that is so heavily manipulated. This subreddit is the search for solutions to both problems as well as general Bitcoin discussion.
Debate continues in /btc, and generally doesn't continue in /Bitcoin - although posts referencing /btc or Bitcoin Unlimited regularly sneak past the moderators because it is such a crucial topic
Eventually one side or the other breaks, enough miners/nodes/users get on one side and Bitcoin starts scaling. This may or may not involve a hard fork.
If not, fees and average confirmation times continue to rise until users migrate en masse to an altcoin. This is not an imminent danger, as can be seen by the BTC marketcap dominance at its historical levels of 80+% but could change at any time
Reaching consensus can be difficult, and that’s something Mike Hearn wanted to tell the world on January 14th. In a Medium post, he calls “The resolution of the Bitcoin experiment” long-time Bitcoin developer Mike Hearn has left the industry. The statement that is quite long goes into a very detailed testimony to why he’s left and that he sold all his bitcoins. Mike Hearn. Follow. Mar 28, 2015 · 15 min read. in Bitcoin. and how to make it harder. In this article I will discuss double spending against merchants in Bitcoin, analyse a couple of real cases ... “But despite knowing that Bitcoin could fail all along, the now inescapable conclusion that it has failed still saddens me greatly. The fundamentals are broken and whatever happens to the price in the short-term, the long-term trend should probably be downwards. I will no longer be taking part in Bitcoin development and have sold all my coins.” Mike Hearn’s Re-Launches Crowdfunding Project Known as Lighthouse.cash. The Bitcoin developer known as Mike Hear decided to launch a BTC crowdfunding application known as Lighthouse. All the crypto community was very excited about that at that time and were waiting for the beta version release. Long one of the most important developers in Bitcoin, Mike Hearn rewrote much of Satoshi Nakamoto’s code. Hearn also openly theorized about what the technology’s potential and future uses could be. In a much-publicized decision, Hearn divorced Bitcoin last fall, causing high drama in the Bitcoin community. He had been pondering how the cryptocurrency could lend itself to more users, and ...
Billionaire Mike Novogratz Is BULLISH! Bitcoin Price Will DOUBLE In The Next Six Months, or Novogratz capitulates. Follow us on Twitter: https://twitter.com/... Today our guest is Mike Hearn who many of you are familiar with. He's one of the first Bitcoin users and the developer of BitcoinJ, a Java library used by a number of popular Bitcoin wallets such ... In today's video I want to share with you a crazy theory on how to accurately predict bitcoin price, or in this case accurately predict bitcoin price, what B... Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss Gemini Brothers: Bitcoin Rally, BTC Buy Signal, Exchange Gemini 36,669 watching Live now How to Scale to $1,000,000+ in the Stock Market - Duration: 45:29. Kostenlos bei Infinitycoin Exchange registrieren https://goo.gl/aqTnV3 Hier zeige ich in 3 einfachen Schritten wie ihr euch die Kryptowährung XIN mit Bitcoins bei der Infinitycoin.Exchange kaufen ...