What Is SHA-256 And How Is It Related to Bitcoin ...
Solusi dari Bitcoin
Mari kita pelajari teori lebih mendalam dari Bitcoin.
Aset dan transaksi ledjer (ledger)/sejarah
Kalian tahu ga apa itu ledjer. Sebenarnya ledjer itu adalah rekor komplit untuk aktivitas ekonomi. Blockchain (rangkaian blok) itu tamper-proof (tidak bisa diubah) berhubungan dengan ledjer. SHA-256 itu adalah kriptografik hash dimana bisa dipakai untuk konfirmasi integritas dan autentik transaksi. Sebuah algoritma yang membentuk 256-bit (32 byte) hash Dulunya orang memakai ledjer untuk rekor aktivitas ekonomi yakni buku catatan. Tapi sekarang ini ledjer disimpan dalam sistem komputer. Sebenarnya pencatat buku ini atau penyimpan ledjer sekarang ini ga aman loh. Mereka bisa saja dapat uang suap untuk mengganti nama pemilik tanah. Selain itu, rekor data pun bisa saja hilang tanpa sengaja. Selama ini sejarah transaksi kita untuk banking, kartu kredit, financial statement perusahaan, reservasi hotel, data apapun yang berhubungan dengan passport, memang semua disimpan si 'penjaga' buku. Kalau dipikir pikir, aman sih semua aktivitas kita di rekor oleh centralized keeper? Sekarang apa nih solusi Bitcoin? BITCOIN ini decentralized ledger dan ada 3 manfaat besar -tidak dirahasiakan -tidak bisa dipalsukan datanya -data tidak akan pernah hilang Kenapa Bitcoin? Dulunya komputer di tahun 1975 kemudian Internet tahun 1993 lalu sekarang Bitcoin tahun 2014. Caranya adalah, bitcoin akan mengantar porsi kecil dari properti digital dari yang satu ke yang lain. Bitcoin menjamin keaslian transaksi tersebut, aman juga. Bitcoin ini didukung oleh konsensus yang terbentuk dari jutaan orang didunia. Bitcoin 'white paper' (kertas putih) ditulis tanggal 31 Oktober 2008.
Bitcoin untuk selesaikan permasalah Jeneral Byzantine
bitcoin itu adalah unit mata uang Bitcoin itu adalah konsep, networking Bitcoin alamat terdiri dari banyak kata-kata dengan angka-angka dimana bitcoin dapat dikirim Blockchain (rangkaian blok) adalah catatan lengkap transaksi untuk bitcoin, ataupun disebut ledjer publik Adapun kegunaan dari BITCOIN REFERENCE CLIENT SOFTWARE untuk menyimpan semua sejarah transaksi. Tidak ada sistem sentral yang mengontrol penyimpanan transaksi. Ini hanya dipakai di antara Clients. Bitcoin mengkonfirmasikan transaksi melalui proses 'mining'. Mining ini akan menciptakan bitcoin baru dengan setiap blok. Seperi Bank yang bisa menciptakan uang kertas baru. Namun, bitcoin ada jumlah maksimalnya yaitu 21 juta. Bitcoin dapat menjaga integritas dari setiap blok melalui tenaga komputer (proof-of-work) Tahap pertama - Miners (penggali) akan mengumumkan transaksi dengan blok dan mengverifikasikan semua itu sah. Tahap kedua - Aplikasikan fungsi dari kriptografik hash dari blok sebelumnya ke blok selanjutnya Tahap ketiga - Selesaikan Proof-of-work Kalau blok itu berhasil diselesaikan maka akan ada hasil penghargaan. Kesusahan untuk menyelesaikan blok transaksi adalab setiap 2016 blok (lebih kurang dua minggu) jadinya network bitcoin membentuk satu blok yang sah setiap 10 menit. Pakai komputer lama ataupun baru tetap akan membentuk blok setiap 10 menit. Mari kita bahas sedikit tentang proof-of-work, sistem ini adalah kunci elemen untuk sekuritas ledjer. Ini untuk mencegah pencurian data dari hacker. Penggali (miner) yang memiliki setidaknya 50% tenaga hash dalam sistem. Ketika seorang penggali memiliki tenaga hash melebihi 50% maka dia akan punya rangkaian yang lebih panjang dari penggali lainnya. Ini akan berdampak buruk karena dia dapat mencegah bitcoin untuk bertransaksi. Oleh karena itu, untuk menjaga kejujuran ekosistem maka seorang penggali mengamankan hanya 50% sistem komputer dan tak lebih.
Dolla is an emerging cryptocurrency that has been under creation and development when it was founded in 2016. It aims to solve the problems that current cryptocurrencies face in becoming a globally adopted payment solution, these problems are predominantly based around speed, throughput and cost. https://preview.redd.it/f3m6h2961ua51.png?width=820&format=png&auto=webp&s=e95710da3fe777b308477c9bb301a1123c17855f Bitcoin for example has been proven to only handle a very small amount of transactions per second, between 3-6, with payments taking about an hour to finalise. These figures are clearly not scalable for Bitcoin to ever be used as a payment solution on a global level. Dolla on the other hand has a throughput of 10,000 transactions per second, an exciting development in the crypto world with their transaction confirmation time being only 1 second. These are the kind of features we look for in a global payment solution and Dolla appears to be able to deliver. Dolla blockchain is developed using high-assurance methodologies. The reference implementation is written in the Haskell programming language, focusing on correctness and auditability. In contrast to many other permissioned cryptocurrencies, Dolla is decentralised and not controlled by a single company or individual. Dolla is designed as a consortium fork-free blockchain with a linear history, which enables it to deliver high throughput, low latency and immediate finality. A majority quorum of consensus members agrees on each block to be appended to the blockchain in a lockstep fashion and a Dolla block is not committed until the majority quorum has decided to include it. Once it is committed, the block and the transactions within it are irreversible. Thus Dolla provides immediate finality. ⛔️ Beware of Scam! Dolla admins would NEVER initiate contact with you privately to offer deals or suggest 3rd party services. ⛔️ Official Site ➡️ https://dolla.org Official Video ➡️ https://youtu.be/0Er2NpSHaCs SOCIAL MEDIA CHANNELS: 📌 Facebook Group: www.facebook.com/groups/DollaCommunity/ 📌 Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/dollanextgen/ 📌 Linkedin Group: www.linkedin.com/groups/10388252 📌 Linkedin Page: https://www.linkedin.com/company/dollaorg/ 📌 Twitter: twitter.com/dollacurrency 📌 Telegram Group: https://t.me/dolla_ico
Review and Prospect of Crypto Economy-Development and Evolution of Consensus Mechanism (2)
https://preview.redd.it/a51zsja94db51.png?width=567&format=png&auto=webp&s=99e8080c9e9b1fb5e11cbd70f915f9cb37188f81 Foreword The consensus mechanism is one of the important elements of the blockchain and the core rule of the normal operation of the distributed ledger. It is mainly used to solve the trust problem between people and determine who is responsible for generating new blocks and maintaining the effective unification of the system in the blockchain system. Thus, it has become an everlasting research hot topic in blockchain. This article starts with the concept and role of the consensus mechanism. First, it enables the reader to have a preliminary understanding of the consensus mechanism as a whole; then starting with the two armies and the Byzantine general problem, the evolution of the consensus mechanism is introduced in the order of the time when the consensus mechanism is proposed; Then, it briefly introduces the current mainstream consensus mechanism from three aspects of concept, working principle and representative project, and compares the advantages and disadvantages of the mainstream consensus mechanism; finally, it gives suggestions on how to choose a consensus mechanism for blockchain projects and pointed out the possibility of the future development of the consensus mechanism. Contents First, concept and function of the consensus mechanism 1.1 Concept: The core rules for the normal operation of distributed ledgers 1.2 Role: Solve the trust problem and decide the generation and maintenance of new blocks 1.2.1 Used to solve the trust problem between people 1.2.2 Used to decide who is responsible for generating new blocks and maintaining effective unity in the blockchain system 1.3 Mainstream model of consensus algorithm Second, the origin of the consensus mechanism 2.1 The two armies and the Byzantine generals 2.1.1 The two armies problem 2.1.2 The Byzantine generals problem 2.2 Development history of consensus mechanism 2.2.1 Classification of consensus mechanism 2.2.2 Development frontier of consensus mechanism Third, Common Consensus System Fourth, Selection of consensus mechanism and summary of current situation 4.1 How to choose a consensus mechanism that suits you 4.1.1 Determine whether the final result is important 4.1.2 Determine how fast the application process needs to be 4.1.2 Determining the degree to which the application requires for decentralization 4.1.3 Determine whether the system can be terminated 4.1.4 Select a suitable consensus algorithm after weighing the advantages and disadvantages 4.2 Future development of consensus mechanism Last lecture review: Chapter 1 Concept and Function of Consensus Mechanism plus Chapter 2 Origin of Consensus Mechanism Chapter 3 Common Consensus Mechanisms (Part 1) Figure 6 Summary of relatively mainstream consensus mechanisms 📷 https://preview.redd.it/9r7q3xra4db51.png?width=567&format=png&auto=webp&s=bae5554a596feaac948fae22dffafee98c4318a7 Source: Hasib Anwar, "Consensus Algorithms: The Root Of The Blockchain Technology" The picture above shows 14 relatively mainstream consensus mechanisms summarized by a geek Hasib Anwar, including PoW (Proof of Work), PoS (Proof of Stake), DPoS (Delegated Proof of Stake), LPoS (Lease Proof of Stake), PoET ( Proof of Elapsed Time), PBFT (Practical Byzantine Fault Tolerance), SBFT (Simple Byzantine Fault Tolerance), DBFT (Delegated Byzantine Fault Tolerance), DAG (Directed Acyclic Graph), Proof-of-Activity (Proof of Activity), Proof-of- Importance (Proof of Importance), Proof-of-Capacity (Proof of Capacity), Proof-of-Burn ( Proof of Burn), Proof-of-Weight (Proof of Weight). Next, we will mainly introduce and analyze the top ten consensus mechanisms of the current blockchain. 》POW -Concept: Work proof mechanism. That is, the proof of work means that it takes a certain amount of computer time to confirm the work. -Principle: Figure 7 PoW work proof principle 📷 https://preview.redd.it/xupacdfc4db51.png?width=554&format=png&auto=webp&s=3b6994641f5890804d93dfed9ecfd29308c8e0cc The PoW represented by Bitcoin uses the SHA-256 algorithm function, which is a 256-bit hash algorithm in the password hash function family: Proof of work output = SHA256 (SHA256 (block header)); if (output of proof of work if (output of proof of work >= target value), change the random number, recursive i logic, continue to compare with the target value. New difficulty value = old difficulty value* (time spent by last 2016 blocks /20160 minutes) Target value = maximum target value / difficulty value The maximum target value is a fixed number. If the last 2016 blocks took less than 20160 minutes, then this coefficient will be small, and the target value will be adjusted bigger, if not, the target value will be adjusted smaller. Bitcoin mining difficulty and block generation speed will be inversely proportional to the appropriate adjustment of block generation speed. -Representative applications: BTC, etc. 》POS -Concept: Proof of stake. That is, a mechanism for reaching consensus based on the holding currency. The longer the currency is held, the greater the probability of getting a reward. -Principle: PoS implementation algorithm formula: hash(block_header) = Coin age calculation formula: coinage = number of coins * remaining usage time of coins Among them, coinage means coin age, which means that the older the coin age, the easier it is to get answers. The calculation of the coin age is obtained by multiplying the coins owned by the miner by the remaining usage time of each coin, which also means that the more coins you have, the easier it is to get answers. In this way, pos solves the problem of wasting resources in pow, and miners cannot own 51% coins from the entire network, so it also solves the problem of 51% attacks. -Representative applications: ETH, etc. 》DPoS -Concept: Delegated proof of stake. That is, currency holding investors select super nodes by voting to operate the entire network , similar to the people's congress system. -Principle: The DPOS algorithm is divided into two parts. Elect a group of block producers and schedule production. Election: Only permanent nodes with the right to be elected can be elected, and ultimately only the top N witnesses can be elected. These N individuals must obtain more than 50% of the votes to be successfully elected. In addition, this list will be re-elected at regular intervals. Scheduled production: Under normal circumstances, block producers take turns to generate a block every 3 seconds. Assuming that no producer misses his order, then the chain they produce is bound to be the longest chain. When a witness produces a block, a block needs to be generated every 2s. If the specified time is exceeded, the current witness will lose the right to produce and the right will be transferred to the next witness. Then the witness is not only unpaid, but also may lose his identity. -Representative applications: EOS, etc. 》DPoW -Concept: Delayed proof of work. A new-generation consensus mechanism based on PoB and DPoS. Miners use their own computing power, through the hash algorithm, and finally prove their work, get the corresponding wood, wood is not tradable. After the wood has accumulated to a certain amount, you can go to the burning site to burn the wood. This can achieve a balance between computing power and mining rights. -Principle: In the DPoW-based blockchain, miners are no longer rewarded tokens, but "wood" that can be burned, burning wood. Miners use their own computing power, through the hash algorithm, and finally prove their work, get the corresponding wood, wood is not tradable. After the wood has accumulated to a certain amount, you can go to the burning site to burn the wood. Through a set of algorithms, people who burn more wood or BP or a group of BP can obtain the right to generate blocks in the next event segment, and get rewards (tokens) after successful block generation. Since more than one person may burn wood in a time period, the probability of producing blocks in the next time period is determined by the amount of wood burned by oneself. The more it is burned, the higher the probability of obtaining block rights in the next period. Two node types: notary node and normal node. The 64 notary nodes are elected by the stakeholders of the dPoW blockchain, and the notarized confirmed blocks can be added from the dPoW blockchain to the attached PoW blockchain. Once a block is added, the hash value of the block will be added to the Bitcoin transaction signed by 33 notary nodes, and a hash will be created to the dPow block record of the Bitcoin blockchain. This record has been notarized by most notary nodes in the network. In order to avoid wars on mining between notary nodes, and thereby reduce the efficiency of the network, Komodo designed a mining method that uses a polling mechanism. This method has two operating modes. In the "No Notary" (No Notary) mode, all network nodes can participate in mining, which is similar to the traditional PoW consensus mechanism. In the "Notaries Active" mode, network notaries use a significantly reduced network difficulty rate to mine. In the "Notary Public Activation" mode, each notary public is allowed to mine a block with its current difficulty, while other notary public nodes must use 10 times the difficulty of mining, and all normal nodes use 100 times the difficulty of the notary public node. Figure 8 DPoW operation process without a notary node 📷 https://preview.redd.it/3yuzpemd4db51.png?width=500&format=png&auto=webp&s=f3bc2a1c97b13cb861414d3eb23a312b42ea6547 -Representative applications: CelesOS, Komodo, etc. CelesOS Research Institute丨DPoW consensus mechanism-combustible mining and voting 》PBFT -Concept: Practical Byzantine fault tolerance algorithm. That is, the complexity of the algorithm is reduced from exponential to polynomial level, making the Byzantine fault-tolerant algorithm feasible in practical system applications. -Principle: Figure 9 PBFT algorithm principle 📷 https://preview.redd.it/8as7rgre4db51.png?width=567&format=png&auto=webp&s=372be730af428f991375146efedd5315926af1ca First, the client sends a request to the master node to call the service operation, and then the master node broadcasts other copies of the request. All copies execute the request and send the result back to the client. The client needs to wait for f+1 different replica nodes to return the same result as the final result of the entire operation. Two qualifications: 1. All nodes must be deterministic. That is to say, the results of the operation must be the same under the same conditions and parameters. 2. All nodes must start from the same status. Under these two limited qualifications, even if there are failed replica nodes, the PBFT algorithm agrees on the total order of execution of all non-failed replica nodes, thereby ensuring security. -Representative applications: Tendermint Consensus, etc. Next Lecture: Chapter 3 Common Consensus Mechanisms (Part 2) + Chapter 4 Consensus Mechanism Selection and Status Summary CelesOS As the first DPOW financial blockchain operating system, CelesOS adopts consensus mechanism 3.0 to break through the "impossible triangle", which can provide high TPS while also allowing for decentralization. Committed to creating a financial blockchain operating system that embraces supervision, providing services for financial institutions and the development of applications on the supervision chain, and formulating a role and consensus ecological supervision layer agreement for supervision. The CelesOS team is dedicated to building a bridge between blockchain and regulatory agencies/financial industry. We believe that only blockchain technology that cooperates with regulators will have a real future. We believe in and contribute to achieving this goal. 📷Website https://www.celesos.com/ 📷Telegram https://t.me/celeschain 📷Twitter https://twitter.com/CelesChain 📷Reddit https://www.reddit.com/useCelesOS 📷Medium https://medium.com/@celesos 📷Facebook https://www.facebook.com/CelesOS1 📷Youtube https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC1Xsd8wU957D-R8RQVZPfGA
Bitcoin (BTC) is a peer-to-peer cryptocurrency that aims to function as a means of exchange that is independent of any central authority. BTC can be transferred electronically in a secure, verifiable, and immutable way.
Launched in 2009, BTC is the first virtual currency to solve the double-spending issue by timestamping transactions before broadcasting them to all of the nodes in the Bitcoin network. The Bitcoin Protocol offered a solution to the Byzantine Generals’ Problem with ablockchainnetwork structure, a notion first created byStuart Haber and W. Scott Stornetta in 1991.
Bitcoin’s whitepaper was published pseudonymously in 2008 by an individual, or a group, with the pseudonym “Satoshi Nakamoto”, whose underlying identity has still not been verified.
The Bitcoin protocol uses an SHA-256d-based Proof-of-Work (PoW) algorithm to reach network consensus. Its network has a target block time of 10 minutes and a maximum supply of 21 million tokens, with a decaying token emission rate. To prevent fluctuation of the block time, the network’s block difficulty is re-adjusted through an algorithm based on the past 2016 block times.
With a block size limit capped at 1 megabyte, the Bitcoin Protocol has supported both the Lightning Network, a second-layer infrastructure for payment channels, and Segregated Witness, a soft-fork to increase the number of transactions on a block, as solutions to network scalability.
Bitcoin is a peer-to-peer cryptocurrency that aims to function as a means of exchange and is independent of any central authority. Bitcoins are transferred electronically in a secure, verifiable, and immutable way.
Network validators, whom are often referred to as miners, participate in the SHA-256d-based Proof-of-Work consensus mechanism to determine the next global state of the blockchain.
The Bitcoin protocol has a target block time of 10 minutes, and a maximum supply of 21 million tokens. The only way new bitcoins can be produced is when a block producer generates a new valid block.
The protocol has a token emission rate that halves every 210,000 blocks, or approximately every 4 years.
Unlike public blockchain infrastructures supporting the development of decentralized applications (Ethereum), the Bitcoin protocol is primarily used only for payments, and has only very limited support for smart contract-like functionalities (Bitcoin “Script” is mostly used to create certain conditions before bitcoins are used to be spent).
In the Bitcoin network, anyone can join the network and become a bookkeeping service provider i.e., a validator. All validators are allowed in the race to become the block producer for the next block, yet only the first to complete a computationally heavy task will win. This feature is called Proof of Work (PoW). The probability of any single validator to finish the task first is equal to the percentage of the total network computation power, or hash power, the validator has. For instance, a validator with 5% of the total network computation power will have a 5% chance of completing the task first, and therefore becoming the next block producer. Since anyone can join the race, competition is prone to increase. In the early days, Bitcoin mining was mostly done by personal computer CPUs. As of today, Bitcoin validators, or miners, have opted for dedicated and more powerful devices such as machines based on Application-Specific Integrated Circuit (“ASIC”). Proof of Work secures the network as block producers must have spent resources external to the network (i.e., money to pay electricity), and can provide proof to other participants that they did so. With various miners competing for block rewards, it becomes difficult for one single malicious party to gain network majority (defined as more than 51% of the network’s hash power in the Nakamoto consensus mechanism). The ability to rearrange transactions via 51% attacks indicates another feature of the Nakamoto consensus: the finality of transactions is only probabilistic. Once a block is produced, it is then propagated by the block producer to all other validators to check on the validity of all transactions in that block. The block producer will receive rewards in the network’s native currency (i.e., bitcoin) as all validators approve the block and update their ledgers.
The Bitcoin protocol utilizes the Merkle tree data structure in order to organize hashes of numerous individual transactions into each block. This concept is named after Ralph Merkle, who patented it in 1979. With the use of a Merkle tree, though each block might contain thousands of transactions, it will have the ability to combine all of their hashes and condense them into one, allowing efficient and secure verification of this group of transactions. This single hash called is a Merkle root, which is stored in the Block Header of a block. The Block Header also stores other meta information of a block, such as a hash of the previous Block Header, which enables blocks to be associated in a chain-like structure (hence the name “blockchain”). An illustration of block production in the Bitcoin Protocol is demonstrated below. https://preview.redd.it/m6texxicf3151.png?width=1591&format=png&auto=webp&s=f4253304912ed8370948b9c524e08fef28f1c78d
Block time and mining difficulty
Block time is the period required to create the next block in a network. As mentioned above, the node who solves the computationally intensive task will be allowed to produce the next block. Therefore, block time is directly correlated to the amount of time it takes for a node to find a solution to the task. The Bitcoin protocol sets a target block time of 10 minutes, and attempts to achieve this by introducing a variable named mining difficulty. Mining difficulty refers to how difficult it is for the node to solve the computationally intensive task. If the network sets a high difficulty for the task, while miners have low computational power, which is often referred to as “hashrate”, it would statistically take longer for the nodes to get an answer for the task. If the difficulty is low, but miners have rather strong computational power, statistically, some nodes will be able to solve the task quickly. Therefore, the 10 minute target block time is achieved by constantly and automatically adjusting the mining difficulty according to how much computational power there is amongst the nodes. The average block time of the network is evaluated after a certain number of blocks, and if it is greater than the expected block time, the difficulty level will decrease; if it is less than the expected block time, the difficulty level will increase.
What are orphan blocks?
In a PoW blockchain network, if the block time is too low, it would increase the likelihood of nodes producingorphan blocks, for which they would receive no reward. Orphan blocks are produced by nodes who solved the task but did not broadcast their results to the whole network the quickest due to network latency. It takes time for a message to travel through a network, and it is entirely possible for 2 nodes to complete the task and start to broadcast their results to the network at roughly the same time, while one’s messages are received by all other nodes earlier as the node has low latency. Imagine there is a network latency of 1 minute and a target block time of 2 minutes. A node could solve the task in around 1 minute but his message would take 1 minute to reach the rest of the nodes that are still working on the solution. While his message travels through the network, all the work done by all other nodes during that 1 minute, even if these nodes also complete the task, would go to waste. In this case, 50% of the computational power contributed to the network is wasted. The percentage of wasted computational power would proportionally decrease if the mining difficulty were higher, as it would statistically take longer for miners to complete the task. In other words, if the mining difficulty, and therefore targeted block time is low, miners with powerful and often centralized mining facilities would get a higher chance of becoming the block producer, while the participation of weaker miners would become in vain. This introduces possible centralization and weakens the overall security of the network. However, given a limited amount of transactions that can be stored in a block, making the block time too longwould decrease the number of transactions the network can process per second, negatively affecting network scalability.
3. Bitcoin’s additional features
Segregated Witness (SegWit)
Segregated Witness, often abbreviated as SegWit, is a protocol upgrade proposal that went live in August 2017. SegWit separates witness signatures from transaction-related data. Witness signatures in legacy Bitcoin blocks often take more than 50% of the block size. By removing witness signatures from the transaction block, this protocol upgrade effectively increases the number of transactions that can be stored in a single block, enabling the network to handle more transactions per second. As a result, SegWit increases the scalability of Nakamoto consensus-based blockchain networks like Bitcoin and Litecoin. SegWit also makes transactions cheaper. Since transaction fees are derived from how much data is being processed by the block producer, the more transactions that can be stored in a 1MB block, the cheaper individual transactions become. https://preview.redd.it/depya70mf3151.png?width=1601&format=png&auto=webp&s=a6499aa2131fbf347f8ffd812930b2f7d66be48e The legacy Bitcoin block has a block size limit of 1 megabyte, and any change on the block size would require a network hard-fork. On August 1st 2017, the first hard-fork occurred, leading to the creation of Bitcoin Cash (“BCH”), which introduced an 8 megabyte block size limit. Conversely, Segregated Witness was a soft-fork: it never changed the transaction block size limit of the network. Instead, it added an extended block with an upper limit of 3 megabytes, which contains solely witness signatures, to the 1 megabyte block that contains only transaction data. This new block type can be processed even by nodes that have not completed the SegWit protocol upgrade. Furthermore, the separation of witness signatures from transaction data solves the malleability issue with the original Bitcoin protocol. Without Segregated Witness, these signatures could be altered before the block is validated by miners. Indeed, alterations can be done in such a way that if the system does a mathematical check, the signature would still be valid. However, since the values in the signature are changed, the two signatures would create vastly different hash values. For instance, if a witness signature states “6,” it has a mathematical value of 6, and would create a hash value of 12345. However, if the witness signature were changed to “06”, it would maintain a mathematical value of 6 while creating a (faulty) hash value of 67890. Since the mathematical values are the same, the altered signature remains a valid signature. This would create a bookkeeping issue, as transactions in Nakamoto consensus-based blockchain networks are documented with these hash values, or transaction IDs. Effectively, one can alter a transaction ID to a new one, and the new ID can still be valid. This can create many issues, as illustrated in the below example:
Alice sends Bob 1 BTC, and Bob sends Merchant Carol this 1 BTC for some goods.
Bob sends Carols this 1 BTC, while the transaction from Alice to Bob is not yet validated. Carol sees this incoming transaction of 1 BTC to him, and immediately ships goods to B.
At the moment, the transaction from Alice to Bob is still not confirmed by the network, and Bob can change the witness signature, therefore changing this transaction ID from 12345 to 67890.
Now Carol will not receive his 1 BTC, as the network looks for transaction 12345 to ensure that Bob’s wallet balance is valid.
As this particular transaction ID changed from 12345 to 67890, the transaction from Bob to Carol will fail, and Bob will get his goods while still holding his BTC.
With the Segregated Witness upgrade, such instances can not happen again. This is because the witness signatures are moved outside of the transaction block into an extended block, and altering the witness signature won’t affect the transaction ID. Since the transaction malleability issue is fixed, Segregated Witness also enables the proper functioning of second-layer scalability solutions on the Bitcoin protocol, such as the Lightning Network.
Lightning Network is a second-layer micropayment solution for scalability. Specifically, Lightning Network aims to enable near-instant and low-cost payments between merchants and customers that wish to use bitcoins. Lightning Network was conceptualized in a whitepaper by Joseph Poon and Thaddeus Dryja in 2015. Since then, it has been implemented by multiple companies. The most prominent of them include Blockstream, Lightning Labs, and ACINQ. A list of curated resources relevant to Lightning Network can be found here. In the Lightning Network, if a customer wishes to transact with a merchant, both of them need to open a payment channel, which operates off the Bitcoin blockchain (i.e., off-chain vs. on-chain). None of the transaction details from this payment channel are recorded on the blockchain, and only when the channel is closed will the end result of both party’s wallet balances be updated to the blockchain. The blockchain only serves as a settlement layer for Lightning transactions. Since all transactions done via the payment channel are conducted independently of the Nakamoto consensus, both parties involved in transactions do not need to wait for network confirmation on transactions. Instead, transacting parties would pay transaction fees to Bitcoin miners only when they decide to close the channel. https://preview.redd.it/cy56icarf3151.png?width=1601&format=png&auto=webp&s=b239a63c6a87ec6cc1b18ce2cbd0355f8831c3a8 One limitation to the Lightning Network is that it requires a person to be online to receive transactions attributing towards him. Another limitation in user experience could be that one needs to lock up some funds every time he wishes to open a payment channel, and is only able to use that fund within the channel. However, this does not mean he needs to create new channels every time he wishes to transact with a different person on the Lightning Network. If Alice wants to send money to Carol, but they do not have a payment channel open, they can ask Bob, who has payment channels open to both Alice and Carol, to help make that transaction. Alice will be able to send funds to Bob, and Bob to Carol. Hence, the number of “payment hubs” (i.e., Bob in the previous example) correlates with both the convenience and the usability of the Lightning Network for real-world applications.
Schnorr Signature upgrade proposal
Elliptic Curve Digital Signature Algorithm (“ECDSA”) signatures are used to sign transactions on the Bitcoin blockchain. https://preview.redd.it/hjeqe4l7g3151.png?width=1601&format=png&auto=webp&s=8014fb08fe62ac4d91645499bc0c7e1c04c5d7c4 However, many developers now advocate for replacing ECDSA with Schnorr Signature. Once Schnorr Signatures are implemented, multiple parties can collaborate in producing a signature that is valid for the sum of their public keys. This would primarily be beneficial for network scalability. When multiple addresses were to conduct transactions to a single address, each transaction would require their own signature. With Schnorr Signature, all these signatures would be combined into one. As a result, the network would be able to store more transactions in a single block. https://preview.redd.it/axg3wayag3151.png?width=1601&format=png&auto=webp&s=93d958fa6b0e623caa82ca71fe457b4daa88c71e The reduced size in signatures implies a reduced cost on transaction fees. The group of senders can split the transaction fees for that one group signature, instead of paying for one personal signature individually. Schnorr Signature also improves network privacy and token fungibility. A third-party observer will not be able to detect if a user is sending a multi-signature transaction, since the signature will be in the same format as a single-signature transaction.
4. Economics and supply distribution
The Bitcoin protocol utilizes the Nakamoto consensus, and nodes validate blocks via Proof-of-Work mining. The bitcoin token was not pre-mined, and has a maximum supply of 21 million. The initial reward for a block was 50 BTC per block. Block mining rewards halve every 210,000 blocks. Since the average time for block production on the blockchain is 10 minutes, it implies that the block reward halving events will approximately take place every 4 years. As of May 12th 2020, the block mining rewards are 6.25 BTC per block. Transaction fees also represent a minor revenue stream for miners.
When was AsicVault established and how is it funded? AsicVault was established 2016. It is funded by founders and corporate investors. Please see Crunchbase. How can it be 1,000 times harder to crack compared to other BIP-39 hardware wallets? BIP-39 hardware wallets are working on very low performance microcontrollers or secure elements. They are doing only 2,048 iterations of PBKDF2 SHA-512 that is even less than old NIST recommendation of 10,000 rounds from year 2016. Performing higher number of PBKDF2 SHA-512 is standard practice for good security. iTunes does it, LastPass does it and Veracrypt as well. Even Ledger agrees that this very low number is the main problem of BIP-39. AsicVault specially designed SHA-512 accelerator inside high performance secure chip is at least 340 times faster than common microcontrollers. The number of PBKDF2 SHA-512 rounds is set to be exactly 1,000 times higher than BIP-39, hence the cost to crack AsicVault is also 1,000 times bigger. Please read in-depth teardown review and validation of AsicVault SHA-512 performance here. You can perform independent analysis according to this PDF and our device performance is shown on this video. Does it support BIP-39 passphrase? Yes, AsicVault supports all standard BIP-39 seed words and additional passphrase (so-called 25th word). You can restore your HD wallet account created by other hardware wallets (Ledger, Trezor, Keepkey) without any additional steps. AsicVault always opens standard security BIP-39 account and high security BIP-39 accounts at the same time. Why two processors? Common design practice, also followed by Ledger, is to separate secure and non-secure code. Our advantage is that these two RISC-V processors are inside a single secure chip. This way the Security CPU has full access to the Application CPU RAM. This makes it possible to do proper secure boot. Why RISC-V? Open instruction set. Possibility to have open source CPU and extensions. We have already implemented several custom instructions. Do I need a computer to initialize the device? No. You can supply power from wall adapter or battery bank. AsicVault supports true air-gapped environment. You can perform full device initialization, seed word generation and seed word backup without connection to the computer. You can also charge the device and check the status the same way. Can I use USB extender cables? Certified USB2.0 extender cables can be used. We don’t recommend extender cables while using USB3.1 features of the device. The device can detect (some) bad cables and show warning messages about them. It is not recommended to use cables/extenders longer than 2.5m. In any case, cables with lower AWG value are better, such as AWG20. How hot does the device get? During normal operation AsicVault device temperature reaches 35-37C. High speed USB3.0 operation adds additional 7C. AsicVault utilizes full Aluminum enclosure as an effective heatsink. Internal chips can tolerate up to +85C, so you never need to worry about them overheating. There are no Lithium batteries inside the device that are known for leaking and not tolerating high temperatures. How long does the active anti-tamper system work? Active anti-tamper protects your device at least 2 weeks, possibly up to 45 days, after you have fully charged the device. It takes just 15 minutes to charge the supercapacitors again. It is advisable to connect the device to a power source at least once per week. Different anti-tamper settings affect the anti-tamper aggressiveness, sensitivity and power consumption. It is also good practice to enter your passphrase weekly so that you will not forget it. How often can I charge it? Do the batteries age? You can charge it as often as you like, several times per day. Supercapacitors can be charged 50,000 – 1,000,000 times during their lifetime compared to common Lithium batteries that only allow 500-1,000 times. Therefore even 10 times per day for 10 years should be fine. At least weekly charging is recommended for best anti-tamper protection. How long are private keys safely stored inside device before the memory gets weak and they are lost? Data retention time of Flash memory inside the main chip is 20 years. Additional encryption keys stored inside FRAM can last for 40 years at temperatures below 70C. These values are higher than the expected lifetime of the device. In any case you must make paper backup(s) of your seed words. Can it store the whole Bitcoin blockchain inside the device? No. The device is not designed to store large amounts of data. Internal 128-megabyte Flash is used to store applications. There are thousands of copies of the blockchain, storing yet another copy is not meaningful or necessary. What is FIPS 140-2 highest Level 4? FIPS 140-2 is Federal Information Processing Standard. Level 4 requires that:
physical security mechanisms provide a complete envelope of protection around the cryptographic module
with the intent of detecting and responding to all unauthorized attempts at physical access
Penetration of the cryptographic module enclosure from any direction has a very high probability of being detected, resulting in the immediate deletion of all plaintext CSPs
Security Level 4 also protects a cryptographic module against a security compromise due to environmental conditions or fluctuations outside of the module's normal operating ranges for voltage and temperature
A cryptographic module is required to include special environmental protection features designed to detect fluctuations and delete CSPs
We have used these guidelines while designing AsicVault. We meet and exceed the requirements in the following way:
AsicVault has full Aluminium/Titanium enclosure that is not designed to be opened. Passive antitamper mesh protects the electronic circuits inside the device. Main secure chip also has chip level metal layer anti-tamper mesh.
Active anti-tamper circuit monitors all intrusion attempts and performs immediate device zeroization upon detecting any such attempts.
AsicVault has temperature, voltage and many other sensors that are continuously monitored by the anti-tamper circuit. Additionally, AsicVault has internal supercapacitor-based power reserve to run Elliptic Curve calculations and other cryptographic functions. Therefore, external voltage fluctuations can’t affect our device while performing these critical operations.
Zeroization not only deletes the private keys, it also destroys internal hardware design making it impossible to perform any further analysis of the hardware.
AsicVault has not participated in formal Cryptographic Module Validation Program since we are not targeting US government users at this point. Can AsicVault device run Linux? It is not our priority to run Linux since it has too big overhead for hardware wallet. However, our RISC-V processors and Mark II hardware can run Linux for your custom projects. Where can I purchase the device? Please contact your local supplier about availability.
Establishing a smart contract commercial scenario: Chainlink, Zk-Snarks and sharding technology work together to make the ultimate killer
This text was translated from Chinese, open following link in Chrome and translate to see all images: https://bihu.com/article/1242138347 EDIT: found an English text with pictures: https://medium.com/@rogerfeng/making-smart-contracts-work-for-business-how-chainlink-zk-snarks-sharding-finally-delivered-8f268af75ca2 Author: Feng Jie translation: Liu Sha “The highest state of technology is to integrate into the various scenes of everyday life, to fade away from high-tech outerwear and become a part of everyday life.” – Mark Weiser People in the future will not even think that smart contracts are "innovative." By that time, smart contracts would permeate every aspect of life, and people couldn't even imagine what the era of non-digital currency would look like. Later historians may divide human business history into two eras, the pre-smart contract era and the post-smart contract era. After all, digital money has brought unprecedented changes to the nature and patterns of business practices in the real world. An anonymous member of the Chainlink community once said: "Smart contracts can change the DNA of the business." Of course, like all the technological revolutions of the past, smart contracts also need to reach a "tipping point" to truly achieve large-scale applications. So we need to ask ourselves two questions:
What exactly is this so-called tipping point?
As of August 2019, have we reached this tipping point?
To reach the tipping point means unlocking the ultimate nirvana of business. Tipping point We can think about this issue from the perspective of mainstream companies. Imagine what a perfect smart contract platform should look like. What characteristics should this platform have? Or what features must be possessed? To reach the tipping point, you must establish a public chain with the following four characteristics:
In addition to the cryptocurrency, the transaction can also be settled in mainstream legal currency and comply with the regulatory requirements of financial markets such as ISO 20022.
Achieve scalability without sacrificing decentralization or security, that is, solving the "impossible triangle problem."
Connect the external data under the chain, that is, solve the "prophecy problem."
Now that we have Chainlink, zk-snarks and sharding technology, we have reached this tipping point. Next, let's explore how this ultimate nirvana is actually made. Our discussion will be mainly from the perspective of Ethereum, which is still the top smart contract platform for community size and mainstream applications. So what about the private chain? Before delving into it, I want to take the time to solve an unavoidable problem. The mainstream view has always believed that the private chain is a more suitable solution for the enterprise. Therefore, we first dialectically analyze the two advantages and two major drawbacks of the private chain. Disadvantages
Centralization leads to relatively lower security
It's not surprising that IBM and Maersk's blockchain freight alliances have a hard time finding customers who are willing to join. How can other freight companies be willing to let their biggest competitors (Maersk) verify their trading data? Only madmen dare to do this.
The staking of the horses occupy the hills:
This problem is even more serious than centralization. John Wolpert, co-founder of the IBM blockchain, wrote an excellent article called Breaking the Barriers to Realize Security: Why Companies Should Embrace the Ethereum Public Chain, which he covered in detail in the article. If every company builds its own private chain, it will lead to chaos in the mountains. Today's B2B ecosystem is very complex. Imagine the innumerable private chains of the world intertwined to form a huge "spider web." This is not only cost-effective, but also not scalable. The starting point of the blockchain is to break down barriers instead of building more barriers. "One day, one of your big buyers called you to ask if you want to join their private chain. You promised. The next day you received a call from the wholesaler to ask you the same question. Then came the supplier, freight. Business, insurance company or even bank, and each company may have several private chains! Finally you have to invest a lot of time and cost to operate dozens of blockchains every day . If there are partners to let you join them at this time The private chain, you might say "Forget it, or fax me the order!" ”—Paul Brody (Ernst & Young) “Every time you connect two private chains through a system integrator, you have to pay a lot of money .” Advantage
Scalability: With the Ethereum public chain implementing fragmentation technology, this advantage is rapidly shrinking.
Privacy protection: At this stage, the classification of public chain / private chain is actually not very accurate. The Aztec , Zether, and Nightfall protocols (both based on the zk-snarks protocol) effectively provide a "private chain model" for the Ethereum public chain, allowing it to switch between the public and private chains. Therefore, a more accurate classification should be the alliance chain and the public chain.
By 2020, the label of the public chain/private chain will gradually disappear. The public and private chains will no longer be two opposing concepts. Instead, the concept of publicly traded/private transactions and confidential contracts/open contracts is changed, and the scope of these transactions and contracts varies according to specific needs, either bilaterally or multilaterally or even publicly. All in all, the private chain has two major drawbacks compared to the public chain. Not only that, but the two major advantages of the private chain are also rapidly disappearing. “Technology will evolve over time, so there will be a variety of solutions to solve existing problems. Ultimately, the public-chain platform will have the same performance, scalability and data privacy as the private chain, while at the same time ensuring security and Decentralized." Feature 1: Privacy protection (predictive machine and public chain privacy) Enigma founder Guy Zyskind once joked in his MIT graduation thesis that smart contracts can only become commercially valuable if they become "confidential contracts." He later proposed that zk-snarks and Trusted Execution Environment (TEE) are the most promising solutions. He said nothing wrong. What is zk-snarks ? Zk-snarks is a zero-knowledge proof mechanism (ZPK). So what is the zero-knowledge proof mechanism? In short: a zero-knowledge proof mechanism allows you to prove that you own certain information without revealing the content of the information. Vitalik Buterin explained this concept in detail from a technical point of view in an article published in 2017. Hackernoon also wrote an excellent article explaining the concept in an easy-to-understand way with the example of a five-year-old child and Halloween candy. What is the trusted execution environment? The trusted execution environment lets the code run on closed hardware, and 1 ) The guarantee result cannot be tampered with 2 ) Protecting absolute privacy, even hardware running code can't get confidential information. The most well-known trusted execution environment is Intel SGX. Chainlink has established a partnership with Intel SGX after acquiring Tom Crier. Ernst & Young released the Nightfall agreement on Github on May 31, 2019. A well-known accounting firm with a history of 100 years will choose to add privacy features to the public chain instead of developing a private chain. This is a problem. Since then, the community has been actively developing on this basis, not only to improve the code, but also to develop a plug-and-play Truffle Box for those who are not good at writing code. Blockchain communities and businesses generally rarely collaborate, so these collaborations fully demonstrate the popularity of Nightfall. Prior to this, two zk-snark-based Ethereum public chain privacy protocols were introduced, namely AZTEC (Consensys) and Zether (Stanford, JPMorgan Chase). An obvious trend is slowly taking shape. In the field of oracles, Chainlink uses both zero-knowledge proof and a trusted execution environment to complement each other. Trusted execution environments guarantee data privacy, even for nodes that cannot access data (this feature is critical for bank accounts and API keys). Chainlink is still trying to implement a trusted execution environment, and nodes can access data temporarily, so authentication services are also needed. Although the credible execution environment is almost 100% foolproof, in theory, a strong shield has a spear that can penetrate it. Therefore, the team is currently trying to run zk-snarks in a trusted execution environment (Thomas Hodges mentioned this in the 2019 Trufflecon Q&A session). The combination of the two can form a very robust and complete system. The attacker must find a way to strip all the layers of an onion at the same time to make any effective attack (and it is already difficult to peel off a layer of skin). “Chainlink combines a trusted execution environment with zero-knowledge proof to build what we call a defense-in-depth system, which means they provide all the tools needed for smart contract developers, including trusted execution environments, multiple nodes, and Data sources, fine margins, reputation systems, asymmetric encryption, zero-knowledge proofs, WASM, and OTP+RNG, these features allow smart contract developers to adjust the confidentiality and cost of contracts based on specific budget and security needs. Machine, Chainlink and its four major application scenarios》 In the future, zk-snarks may be upgraded to zk-starks (a fully transparent zero-knowledge proof mechanism) that protects the system from quantum computer attacks. And the best thing about zk-starks is that it's more scalable than zk-snarks. In other words, it can better protect privacy, and the cost of gas will not increase. If you want to learn more about zk-starks, you can read a popular science article written by Adam Luciano. Feature 2: Scalability (scalability of predictive machines and public chains) To understand this problem, we can make an analogy like this: A public chain is like a large enterprise, and every employee (ie, a node) must attend each meeting (ie, confirm each transaction). Imagine how inefficient this company is! Only customers who have a lot of money (ie gas fees) can get their requests to the forefront. And this is not the most serious problem. The most serious problem is that the more employees (ie nodes) who join the company, the harder it is for the company to function properly! In the end, the company not only failed to expand linearly, but also became smaller and smaller. Although this guarantees decentralization and security to the greatest extent, the price is completely abandoning scalability. There are various temporary fire fighting solutions, but no one solution can completely solve this "impossible triangle problem." For example, EOS uses the DPOS mechanism (share authorization certification mechanism), where only 21 super nodes (many of which are well-known nodes) are responsible for verifying all transactions. Sidechains (such as Bitcoin's Lightning Network and Ethereum's lightning network) guarantee scalability and decentralization at the expense of security. So how to use the fragmentation technology to solve this problem? Let's make another analogy: In reality, there is only one company that is not too much to ask everyone to attend all meetings, that is, small start-ups (that is, private chains that limit the number of nodes). In most cases, large companies divide employees into thousands of teams (ie, shards), and each team's principal (ie, the certifier) is responsible for reporting to the senior management (ie, the main chain). If people from different teams need to collaborate (and sometimes also), then they can collaborate by cross-shard receipts. If a new employee joins the company, the team can be re-segmented (ie re-sharding). This allows for linear expansion. In fact, the process of developing a start-up to a large enterprise is surprisingly similar to the process of Ethereum 1.0 developing into Ethereum 2.0. “The Ethereum 1.0 period is that several people who are alone are trying to build a world computer; and Ethereum 2.0 will really develop into a world computer.” Vitalik Buterin said in the first piece of the workshop. Since Ethereum was not originally built on the principle of fragmentation, it takes seven steps to achieve the goal (this is a bit like the word morphing solitaire game). The first step is planned for January 3, 2020. At the same time, developers can use many other blockchain platforms designed based on the fragmentation principle. Some platforms, including Zilliqa and Quarkchain, are already compatible with Chainlink. If you want to see more in-depth technical analysis of shards, check out an article by Ramy Zhang. In the field of oracles, Chainlink has the following two characteristics: 1 ) Use Schnorr threshold signatures to quickly reach consensus in a cost-effective manner. The next version of the chain only needs 16,000 gas. 2 ) We have previously discussed the need to use trusted execution environment hardware to ensure that nodes cannot access sensitive data. Since you have hardware in your hand, you can use it to do some actual computing work, so that you can properly reduce the amount of computation on the smart contract platform. "With the SGX system (Town Crier) and zero-knowledge proof technology, the oracle can be truly reliable and confidential, so the boundaries between the oracle and the smart contract are beginning to flow... Our long-term strategy... is to let The predictor becomes the key chain of computing resources used by most smart contracts. We believe that the way to achieve this goal is to perform chain operations in the oracle to meet various computing needs, and then send the results to the smart contract."Chainlink White Paper, Section 6.3 (26 pages) Of course, this “long-term strategy” has certain risks, unless Chainlink can implement a trusted execution environment and its service provider ecosystem can achieve a qualitative leap. However, the Chainlink team's vision is absolutely forward-looking: under-chain computing is a key factor in ensuring that blockchains are not dragged down by large amounts of IoT data. The Internet of Things has dramatically increased the current state of big data. At present, most of the data is still generated on the software side, and it is not real-time data, and most of the data in the future will be real-time data generated on the sensor side. One of the big drawbacks of real-time data is that it increases storage pressure. For example, Coughlin Associates expects an unmanned car to generate 1G of data per second. This means that the same car will produce 3.6T data per hour! The only viable solution is to do real-time analysis of the data, rather than storing the data first. In the Global Cloud Index: 2016-2021 Forecast and Methodology White Paper, Cisco predicts that more than 90% of data in 2021 will be analyzed in real time without storage. That is to say, the essence of data is that it can only exist in just one instant. The nature of the blockchain is not to be modified, so the two are as incompatible as water and oil. The solution is to analyze the raw data under the chain, extract the meaningful results and send them to the blockchain. The combination of fragmentation technology and trusted execution environment forms a new computing architecture, similar to the cloud computing-fog computing-edge computing architecture. It should be noted here that it is good to improve computing power, but this is not the main purpose of the blockchain. The fundamental purpose of the blockchain is not to reduce the original cost of computing and data storage. After all, technology giants such as Amazon, Microsoft, Google, Salesforce, Tencent, Alibaba, and Dropbox have built world-class cloud services. The centralized server wins high computational efficiency (but the blockchain will greatly improve the computational efficiency through fragmentation technology, and will catch up with it one day). The value of the blockchain is to reduce the cost of building trust. Nick Szabo calls it "social scalability" (this is a relative concept to the "operational" scalability we have been talking about). Vitalik Buterin also made it clear that the meaning of smart contracts is to accept small arithmetic delay penalties in exchange for a substantial reduction in "social costs." Alex Coventry of the Chainlink team once raised the question: "We have missed many opportunities for cooperation and reciprocity because we can't confirm whether the other party will fulfill the promise?" Is there any potential for data storage projects like Siacoin and IPFS? What about decentralized computing projects like SONM and Golem? Siacoin 's core value proposition is not that its computing efficiency is higher than traditional cloud services. The cost of computing is required to split, repeat, and reassemble data. And companies are more capable of buying the latest and greatest hardware than individuals. Siacoin's core value proposition is to process data in an Airbnb-like mode, so management fees will be lower than traditional models. It also generates additional social value, such as flood control, privacy and security, and anti-censorship. The same is true of Golem and SONM. Even with the most efficient protocol, it is inevitable that a small amount of delay will be imposed and fined to coordinate the hardware of different geographical locations. Therefore, under the condition that all other conditions are equal, the centralized hardware still has the advantage of faster computing speed. However, the core value proposition of the above project is to use the Airbnb-like model to reduce management costs. We must strictly distinguish between "social scalability" and "operational scalability", and the two cannot be confused. I will explain these two concepts in detail when I discuss "Magic Bus and Lightweight Library" later. Feature 3: Compatible with legal currency Most mainstream companies do not regard cryptocurrencies as "real currencies." In addition, even if someone wants to use cryptocurrency for trading, it is very difficult to actually operate because of its high price volatility. I discussed the “price volatility problem” in detail in Chapters 8 and 9 of the previous article. These problems do not completely erase the existence value of cryptocurrencies, because cryptocurrencies also have many advantages that legal currency does not have. I am just emphasizing what we need to know more about the comfort zone of mainstream companies. Chainlink acts as a universal API connector that triggers open banking payments. Chainlink is fully compliant with ISO 20022 and has established a long-term partnership with SWIFT (it is worth mentioning that SWIFT has not been updated for a long time and hopes to be updated after the SIBOS 2019 conference). PSD2 will take effect on September 14, 2019. All banks in the EU will all comply with this new regulation by then. In other words, the bank must put all account data in the "front end" and can be called through the API. The approved third party (ie, the Chainlink node) can trigger the payment directly without the payment service provider. Although the United States and Japan have not adopted similar laws, many banks still spontaneously promote the development of open banks. Banks open APIs to third-party developers to create new revenue streams and customer experiences that ultimately increase profitability. In addition, this will allow banks to better respond to competitors in the mobile payment and financial technology sectors in an APP-centric economic model. As this open banking revolution continues, Chainlink will connect smart contracts with the world's major currencies (US dollar, euro, yen, etc.). Only one external adapter is required to connect to the authenticated API. From a programming perspective, it is relatively simple to allow everyone in the community to contribute code to the code base (and thus achieve scalability). Chainlink has released adapters for PayPal and Mister Tango (European version of PayPal). Feature 4: Data connection with the chain Chainlink has been working on solving the "prophecy problem" and successfully succeeded on the main online line on May 30, 2019. Chainlink has made many achievements in just a few months. Provable (formerly Oraclize) was successfully used on the Chainlink node and finally settled the debate about whether the predictor should be centralized or decentralized. Synthetic Ether lost 37 million Ethercoins in a hack because it did not connect to Chainlink. Fortunately, the money was finally recovered and did not cause any loss. This lesson illustrates the importance of decentralized oracles. In addition, both Oracle and Google have partnered with Chainlink to monetize their API data and create a virtuous circle to capture the market opportunities that Facebook missed. There are new nodes coming online every week, and the network activity has been very high. The Chainlink team maintains a list of certified nodes in the documentation and Twitter releases. Twitter user CryptoSponge also set up a new development for the Tableau push update Chainlink team: Regarding the importance of the current stage in the history of blockchain development, Brad Huston summed it up very brilliantly: "The biggest problem with cryptocurrencies is to build bridges between cryptocurrencies, fiat currencies and big data. Chainlink is very beautifully narrowing the distance between the three. Now it can even be said: 'The bridge has been built.'" Magic bus and lightweight library Let's summarize what we discussed earlier. The real purpose of the blockchain is to reduce the cost of building trust and achieve "social scalability." Therefore, according to this logic, the main application scenarios of platforms such as Ethereum 2.0 and Zilliqa should be in the B2B field. I quote a sentence I wrote in a previous article: “My conclusion is: If the smart contract is successful, it will also succeed in the B2B field first.” The private chain itself is self-contradictory and destined to fail. It has led to the phenomenon of occupying the hills, thus increasing the social cost, which is in opposition to B2B itself, and ultimately it is self-restraint. ” Before the emergence of fragmentation technology, even simple games (ie, etheric cats) could not be smoothly run on the public chain, let alone dealing with complex B2B contracts and even changing commercial DNA. With the sharding technology, everything is ready. Despite this, we can't use Ethereum 2.0 as an all-powerful platform. Just now we said that although it is a good thing to speed up the calculation, this is not the real purpose of Ethereum 2.0. And before we also said that due to the irreversible modification of the blockchain, it is not good to deal with a large number of fleeting real-time data of the Internet of Things. In other words, we must be soberly aware that Ethereum 2.0 will not replace traditional web 2.0. Instead, we should make better use of the real advantages of Ethereum 2.0: “There is a new concept now, that is to think of the Ethereum main network as a global bus... We use the Ethereum 2.0 main network to treat various business resources as a working group on Slack: it can be easily built and integrated. And restructuring. The SAP inventory management system in your company, the dealer's JD Edwards ERP system, and the financial technology partner's tall blockchain system can seamlessly interface, eliminating the need to develop an infrastructure specifically for each partner." - John Wolper describes his ideal "magic bus" Ethereum 2.0 should be an integration center, not a data center or computing center. It should be a library built specifically to store B2B contract terms (to be honest, even with fragmentation technology, the amount of data is large enough). We should not expect Ethereum 2.0 to be an all-powerful platform, but rather develop it into a "lightweight library." If we reorder the pyramid model just now, the architecture of the magic bus is obvious: Of course, the positional relationship in the above model is not static. With the development of 5G technology, edge computing and IoT sensors, they may bypass the cloud to directly interact (or even bypass the fog end). If the collaboration between Iotex and Chainlink is successful, then the edge can interact directly with the trusted execution environment. Time will tell if Airbnb's shared data storage and computing model can make management costs lower than the current mainstream Web 2.0 model. Time will also prove whether the market really needs anti-censorship, anti-tampering, security protection and privacy protection. Do users really care about these social values and are willing to pay for them? Do they think these are just the icing on the cake or the most fundamental value? in conclusion Whether it is the battle between web2.0 and web3.0 or the battle between cryptocurrency and legal currency, one thing is beyond doubt: We have reached the tipping point, and the era of smart contracts with commercial value has arrived. In fact, the only problem at the moment is the time issue, and the main roadblocks have been basically cleared.
When will Ethereum 2.0 finish these 7 stages and be officially released?
When will Chainlink use a trusted execution environment on a large scale? If the cooperation between Intel SGX and Town Crier fails, what alternative plans are there? Will Chainlink communicate with other blockchain teams that plan to use a trusted execution environment (such as Dawn Song's Oasis Labs)?
At present, the main technical problems in the ecosystem have been solved, and now it is only necessary to recruit a group of enthusiastic developers to do the work of “connecting the line”. Digital currency has changed commercial DNA, and the future is full of possibilities. The only thing that hinders us now is our own imagination. The future is infinitely imaginative, and the future will be the world of developers. Dapps is already overwhelming. There is no doubt that we have found the ultimate nirvana. This text was translated from Chinese, open following in Chrome and translate to see all images: https://bihu.com/article/1242138347
I was going through old emails today and came across this one I sent out to family on January 4, 2018. It was a reflection on the 2017 crypto bull market and where I saw it heading, as well as some general advice on crypto, investment, and being safe about how you handle yourself in cryptoland. I feel that we are on the cusp of a new bull market right now, so I thought that I would put this out for at least a few people to see *before* the next bull run, not after. While the details have changed, I don't see a thing in this email that I fundamentally wouldn't say again, although I'd also probably insist that people get a Yubikey and use that for all 2FA where it is supported. Happy reading, and sorry for some of the formatting weirdness -- I cleaned it up pretty well from the original email formatting, but I love lists and indents and Reddit has limitations... :-/ Also, don't laught at my token picks from January 2018! It was a long time ago and (luckliy) I took my own advice about moving a bunch into USD shortly after I sent this. I didn't hit the top, and I came back in too early in the summer of 2018, but I got lucky in many respects. ----------------------------------------------------------------------- Jan-4, 2018 Hey all! I woke up this morning to ETH at a solid $1000 and decided to put some thoughts together on what I think crypto has done and what I think it will do. *******, if you could share this to your kids I’d appreciate it -- I don’t have e-mail addresses, and it’s a bit unwieldy for FB Messenger… Hopefully they’ll at least find it thought-provoking. If not, they can use it as further evidence that I’m a nutjob. 😉 Some history before I head into the future. I first mined some BTC in 2011 or 2012 (Can’t remember exactly, but it was around the Christmas holidays when I started because I had time off from work to get it set up and running.) I kept it up through the start of summer in 2012, but stopped because it made my PC run hot and as it was no longer winter, ********** didn’t appreciate the sound of the fans blowing that hot air into the room any more. I’ve always said that the first BTC I mined was at $1, but looking back at it now, that’s not true – It was around $2. Here’s a link to BTC price history. In the summer of 2013 I got a new PC and moved my programs and files over before scrapping the old one. I hadn’t touched my BTC mining folder for a year then, and I didn’t even think about salvaging those wallet files. They are now gone forever, including the 9-10BTC that were in them. While I can intellectually justify the loss, it was sloppy and underlines a key thing about cryptocurrency that I believe will limit its widespread adoption by the general public until it is addressed and solved: In cryptoland, you are your own bank, and if you lose your password or account number, there is no person or organization that can help you reset it so that you can get access back. Your money is gone forever. On April 12, 2014 I bought my first BTC through Coinbase. BTC had spiked to $1000 and been in the news, at least in Japan. This made me remember my old wallet and freak out for a couple of months trying to find it and reclaim the coins. I then FOMO’d (Fear Of Missing Out”) and bought $100 worth of BTC. I was actually very lucky in my timing and bought at around $430. Even so, except for a brief 50% swing up almost immediately afterwards that made me check prices 5 times a day, BTC fell below my purchase price by the end of September and I didn’t get back to even until the end of 2015. In May 2015 I bought my first ETH at around $1. I sent some guy on bitcointalk ~$100 worth of BTC and he sent me 100 ETH – all on trust because the amounts were small and this was a small group of people. BTC was down in the $250 range at that point, so I had lost 30-40% of my initial investment. This was of the $100 invested, so not that much in real terms, but huge in percentages. It also meant that I had to buy another $100 of BTC on Coinbase to send to this guy. A few months after I purchased my ETH, BTC had doubled and ETH had gone down to $0.50, halving the value of my ETH holdings. I was even on the first BTC purchase finally, but was now down 50% on the ETH I had bought. The good news was that this made me start to look at things more seriously. Where I had skimmed white papers and gotten a superficial understanding of the technology before FOMO’ing, I started to act as an investor, not a speculator. Let me define how I see those two different types of activity:
Investors buy because the price is less than the value they see in the investment. Speculators buy because they think that someone will pay more in the future than they are paying now.
Investors trade on information (The white paper was really well-written, had a clear technical advantage over other alternatives, and addresses a need that I can understand and value.) Speculators trade on sentiment. (Buy the rumor! Sell the news!)
Investors usually look at the investment and themselves and can describe why they purchase in those terms (ABC-Coin provides (service) that isn’t addressed yet and matches (requirements) for an investment.) Speculators usually describe why they bought something in terms of how other people think (I think that other people think that the price will rise, so I want to get ahead of that.)
Investors don’t necessarily check the price every day. The can, and very often I do, but it isn’t required because fundamentals don’t often change on a dime. Speculators need to be glued to a price feed, because sentiment very often changes on a dime.
Investors like ideas, people, business plans, and market opportunities. Good ones are like Spock. Speculators like trends. They are tribal.
Investors have a longer time horizon than speculators. In cryptoland, the notion of a “longer” time horizon is still laughably small (months) compared to traditional markets, but it certainly isn’t weeks or days or hours, which is whre speculators often live.
So what has been my experience as an investor? After sitting out the rest of 2015 because I needed to understand the market better, I bought into ETH quite heavily, with my initial big purchases being in March-April of 2016. Those purchases were in the $11-$14 range. ETH, of course, dropped immediately to under $10, then came back and bounced around my purchase range for a while until December of 2016, when I purchased a lot more at around $8. I also purchased my first ICO in August of 2016, HEAT. I bought 25ETH worth. Those tokens are now worth about half of their ICO price, so about 12.5ETH or $12500 instead of the $25000 they would be worth if I had just kept ETH. There are some other things with HEAT that mean I’ve done quite a bit better than those numbers would suggest, but the fact is that the single best thing I could have done is to hold ETH and not spend the effort/time/cost of working with HEAT. That holds true for about every top-25 token on the market when compared to ETH. It certainly holds true for the many, many tokens I tried to trade in Q1-Q2 of 2017. In almost every single case I would have done better and slept better had I just held ETH instead of trying to be smarter than Mr. Market. But, I made money on all of them except one because the crypto market went up more in USD terms than any individual coin went down in ETH or BTC terms. This underlines something that I read somewhere and that I take to heart: A rising market makes everyone seem like a genius. A monkey throwing darts at a list of the top 100 cryptocurrencies last year would have doubled his money. Here’s a chart from September that shows 2017 year-to-date returns for the top 10 cryptocurrencies, and all of them went up a *lot* more between then and December. A monkey throwing darts at this list there would have quintupled his money. When evaluating performance, then, you have to beat the monkey, and preferably you should try to beat a Wall Street monkey. I couldn’t, so I stopped trying around July 2017. My benchmark was the BLX, a DAA (Digital Asset Array – think fund like a Fidelity fund) created by ICONOMI. I wasn’t even close to beating the BLX returns, so I did several things.
I went from holding about 25 different tokens to holding 10 now. More on that in a bit.
I used those funds to buy ETH and BLX. ETH has done crazy-good since then and BLX has beaten BTC handily, although it hasn’t done as well as ETH.
I used some of those funds to set up an arbitrage operation.
The arbitrage operation is why I kept the 11 tokens that I have now. All but a couple are used in an ETH/token pair for arbitrage, and each one of them except for one special case is part of BLX. Why did I do that? I did that because ICONOMI did a better job of picking long-term holds than I did, and in arbitrage the only speculative thing you must do is pick the pairs to trade. My pairs are (No particular order):
I also hold PLU, PLBT, and ART. These two are multi-year holds for me. I have not purchased BTC once since my initial $200, except for a few cases where BTC was the only way to go to/from an altcoin that didn’t trade against ETH yet. Right now I hold about the same 0.3BTC that I held after my first $100 purchase, so I don’t really count it. Looking forward to this year, I am positioning myself as follows:
ETH will still be my core holding. It is the “deepest in the stack” crypto investment that I have. “Deep in the stack” is a programming term that gets at the idea that most software is built on other software. If you just think about your notebook, you have your OS, and programs run on that. But even inside the OS there is a stack. The bottom of your stack is the kernel, and on top of that are the drivers, protocols, and other layers that allow the programs to talk to the OS, the hard drive, the screen, the mouse, your printer, etc. You can change your mouse or printer easily. Changing things deeper in the stack becomes harder and harder. ETH is deep in the crypto stack, so is very hard to dislodge – Around 60 of the top 100 cryptocurrencies by market cap run on top of Ethereum, so getting rid of Ethereum is something that would take a long time to do.
DNT, QTUM, ZRX, and OMG are all, to varying degrees, “deep in the stack” tokens that, once established, will be very hard to dislodge.
That said, I am peeling away some of my holdings into USD right now, because big changes are afoot and they are going to cause market disruptions. I’m going to come right out and admit that this is speculative, but I’m also going to back it up with some non-speculative facts.
The SEC has been sending out hundreds of subpoenas to cryptocurrency organizations over the past 3-4 months. These subpoenas are simply asking for information and nobody has been charged with any crimes or misdoings, but it is clear that the SEC is getting together information so that they can begin to regulate cryptoland. When that happens, other countries will follow, and that means:
Some tokens will be deemed outright scams and people will be prosecuted.
Some tokens will be deemed securities and will be regulated.
Some tokens will not be deemed scams or securities and will continue as they have.
Looking at this, it is clear to me that the tokens that escape prosecution and regulation should do better, but the short-term impact will be brutal and ugly. It would not surprise me at all to see a 50% drop in overall market cap within Q1-Q2, with Q1 being more likely.
Cryptoland has always been a bit nuts, but it is more nuts now than I have ever seen it. Back in 2011-2014 it was a freaks-n-geeks show where people were all about the technology and I would sit around for a 3-day weekend installing a *nix VM on my Windows machine so that I could compile the most recent source and run a CUDA SHA-256 routine rather than thrash my CPU. If that doesn’t make sense to you, you wouldn’t have even thought about being involved.
Now, people see Bitcoin advertisements in their Facebook feed and think “I gotta get on the BTC train!” before going to Coinbase and buying some with a credit card. They don’t know anything about crypto, and they are getting eaten alive – It is no coincidence that BTC peaked after the Thanksgiving holidays when people sat around the table and Janice got Uncle Mike and Cousin Bob all excited as she talked about going to Cancun for Christmas because of her crypto winnings. Huge amounts of fiat got transferred from newbies to BTC whales during this period, and once the whales were done, BTC had dropped from $20,000 to $12,000. It’s now back at $15,000, but for people who bought at a higher level, this sucks. As a result many have moved from BTC to ETH, with the single biggest money flow in crypto in December being the BTC à ETH flow. As a result, it’s no coincidence that ETH is at all-time highs now. The thing is, though, that even most people that moved from BTC to ETH really have no idea what they are doing. They are acting on buzzwords and emotion. They are speculators and are going to get crushed.
The stock market is quite high right now, but people are starting to worry that it is too high and that we are going to enter into a period of inflation again. This has caused gold to go up a lot the last quarter and is likely also responsible a bit for the rise in cryptos. If this view is correct, then cryptos stay stronger than if that pressure wasn’t there. If wrong, then cryptos will swing down as money exits cryptoland for more traditional markets.
I am spending most of my time and money on the arbitrage effort. The nice thing about arbitrage is that it works as the markets go up, and it works as the markets go down. When markets are too volatile, however, arbitrage can get very messy and dangerous, with each trade generating a loss instead of a profit, so I am working right now to tune the algorithms to take into account rate-of-change and add in some circuit breaker triggers. Once this is done I will expand those operations.
I am getting much more serious about systems security.
I have a Nano Ledger and recommend that anyone with >$1000 of crypto have one. The Trezor is also supposed to be good, but I haven’t used it.
I will set up a dedicated *nix notebook that is used for nothing except my crypto work. All it takes is one keylogger to get on your PC/Mac and your crypto is gone. What is on your Nano Ledger will be OK, but they will sweep out your exchange account or Coinbase account faster than you can type. A standard Linux installation with Chrome and nothing else is as about as secure as you can get in the civilian world.
If you don’t use LastPass or a similar password manager yet, you need to do that. Your password to LastPass should be at least 16 characters long and should not have a recognizable English word in it. If you think that “Iluvu4evah” is a secure password, you’re wrong.
Hackers know that “4”=”for” and “u”=”you”. Writing a script to substitute those in is trivial if they want to write the script, but it’s much easier for them to download one of the many, many programs out there that already do this.
If your password contains any string of numbers from anything that can be associated with you at any time in your life, it is insecure. Take those numbers out of the character count because they are an insignificant barrier to cracking your account.
The good news is that you probably won’t be targeted, but if you ever mention online that you are doing anything significant in crypto, that chance increased enormously.
*Never* talk with *anyone* about how much you have in crypto. You’ll notice that I haven’t here. There is no reason to tell even a family member how much you have unless you are sharing a tax form. Sure, you may trust them, but all it takes if for someone to overhead someone else mention at a party that a relative got into crypto a long time ago and made a bunch of money. That person can also then be subjected to the $10 hack and force you to send all your crypto to them.
Your password to LastPass (Or equivalent.) should look something like this -> 6k0jQMoziX&D#4W8
Yes, it’s a headache. Imagine your headache, though, were you to open your account one day and find all of your money gone.
Looking at my notes, I have two other things that I wanted to work into this email that I didn’t get to, so here they are:
Just like with free apps and other software, if you are getting something of value and you didn’t pay anything for it, you need to ask why this is. With apps, the phrase is “If you didn’t pay for the product, you are the product”, and this works for things such as pump groups, tips, and even technical analysis. Here’s how I see it.
Technical analysis (TA) is something that has been argued about for longer than I’ve been alive, but I think that it falls into the same boat. In short, TA argues that there are patterns in trading that can be read and acted upon to signal when one must buy or sell. It has been used forever in the stock and foreign exchange markets, and people use it in crypto as well. Let’s break down these assumptions a bit.
i. First, if crypto were like the stock or forex markets we’d all be happy with 5-7% gains per year rather than easily seeing that in a day. For TA to work the same way in crypto as it does in stocks and foreign exchange, the signals would have to be *much* stronger and faster-reacting than they work in the traditional market, but people use them in exactly the same way. ii. Another area where crypto is very different than the stock and forex markets centers around market efficiency theory. This theory says that markets are efficient and that the price reflects all the available information at any given time. This is why gold in New York is similar in price to gold in London or Shanghai, and why arbitrage margins are easily <0.1% in those markets compared to cryptoland where I can easily get 10x that. Crypto simply has too much speculation and not enough professional traders in it yet to operate as an efficient market. That fundamentally changes the way that the market behaves and should make any TA patterns from traditional markets irrelevant in crypto. iii. There are services, both free and paid that claim to put out signals based on TA for when one should buy and sell. If you think for even a second that they are not front-running (Placing orders ahead of yours to profit.) you and the other people using the service, you’re naïve. iv. Likewise, if you don’t think that there are people that have but together computerized systems to get ahead of people doing manual TA, you’re naïve. The guys that I have programming my arbitrage bots have offered to build me a TA bot and set up a service to sell signals once our position is taken. I said no, but I am sure that they will do it themselves or sell that to someone else. Basically they look at TA as a tip machine where when a certain pattern is seen, people act on that “tip”. They use software to see that “tip” faster and take a position on it so that when slower participants come in they either have to sell lower or buy higher than the TA bot did. Remember, if you are getting a tip for free, you’re the product. In TA I see a system when people are all acting on free preset “tips” and getting played by the more sophisticated market participants. Again, you have to beat that Wall Street monkey.
If you still don’t agree that TA is bogus, think about it this way: If TA was real, Wall Street would have figured it out decades ago and we would have TA funds that would be beating the market. We don’t.
If you still don’t agree that TA is bogus and that its real and well, proven, then you must think that all smart traders use them. Now follow that logic forward and think about what would happen if every smart trader pushing big money followed TA. The signals would only last for a split second and would then be overwhelmed by people acting on them, making them impossible to leverage. This is essentially what the efficient market theory postulates for all information, including TA.
OK, the one last item. Read this weekly newsletter – You can sign up at the bottom. It is free, so they’re selling something, right? 😉 From what I can tell, though, Evan is a straight-up guy who posts links and almost zero editorial comments. Happy 2018.
Is Crypto Currency truly at risk due to Quantum Computers, and what can you do about it?
Is Crypto Currency truly at risk due to Quantum Computers, and what can you do about it?
There is no denying that the Quantum revolution is coming. Security protocols for the internet, banking, telecommunications, etc... are all at risk, and your Bitcoins (and alt-cryptos) are next! This article is not really about quantum computers[i], but, rather, how they will affect the future of cryptocurrency, and what steps a smart investor will take. Since this is a complicated subject, my intention is to provide just enough relevant information without being too “techy.”
The Quantum Evolution
In 1982, Nobel winning physicist, Richard Feynman, hypothesized how quantum computers[ii] would be used in modern life. Just one year later, Apple released the “Apple Lisa”[iii] – a home computer with a 7.89MHz processor and a whopping 5MB hard drive, and, if you enjoy nostalgia, it used 5.25in floppy disks. Today, we walk around with portable devices that are thousands of times more powerful, and, yet, our modern day computers still work in a simple manner, with simple math, and simple operators[iv]. They now just do it so fast and efficient that we forget what’s happening behind the scenes. No doubt, the human race is accelerating at a remarkable speed, and we’ve become obsessed with quantifying everything - from the everyday details of life to the entire universe[v]. Not only do we know how to precisely measure elementary particles, we also know how to control their actions! Yet, even with all this advancement, modern computers cannot “crack” cryptocurrencies without the use of a great deal more computing power, and since it’s more than the planet can currently supply, it could take millions, if not billions, of years. However, what current computers can’t do, quantum computers can! So, how can something that was conceptualized in the 1980’s, and, as of yet, has no practical application, compromise cryptocurrencies and take over Bitcoin? To best answer this question, let’s begin by looking at a bitcoin address.
What exactly is a Bitcoin address?
Well, in layman terms, a Bitcoin address is used to send and receive Bitcoins, and looking a bit closer (excuse the pun), it has two parts:[vi] A public key that is openly shared with the world to accept payments. A public key that is derived from the private key. The private key is made up of 256 bits of information in a (hopefully) random order. This 256 bit code is 64 characters long (in the range of 0-9/a-f) and further compressed into a 52 character code (using RIPEMD-160). NOTE: Although many people talk about Bitcoin encryption, Bitcoin does not use Encryption. Instead, Bitcoin uses a hashing algorithm (for more info, please see endnote below[vii]). Now, back to understanding the private key: The Bitcoin address “1EHNa6Q4Jz2uvNExL497mE43ikXhwF6kZm” translates to a private key of “5HpHagT65TZzG1PH3CSu63k8DbpvD8s5ip4nEB3kEsreAnchuDf” which further translates to a 256 bit private key of “0000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000001” (this should go without saying, but do not use this address/private key because it was compromised long ago.) Although there are a few more calculations that go behind the scenes, these are the most relevant details. Now, to access a Bitcoin address, you first need the private key, and from this private key, the public key is derived. With current computers, it’s classically impractical to attempt to find a private key based on a public key. Simply put, you need the private key to know the public key. However, it has already been theorized (and technically proven) that due to private key compression, multiple private keys can be used to access the same public key (aka address). This means that your Bitcoin address has multiple private keys associated with it, and, if someone accidentally discovers or “cracks” any one of those private keys, they have access to all the funds in that specific address. There is even a pool of a few dedicated people hunting for these potential overlaps[viii], and they are, in fact, getting very efficient at it. The creator of the pool also has a website listing every possible Bitcoin private key/address in existence[ix], and, as of this writing, the pool averages 204 trillion keys per day! But wait! Before you get scared and start panic selling, the probability of finding a Bitcoin address containing funds (or even being used) is highly unlikely – nevertheless, still possible! However, the more Bitcoin users, the more likely a “collision” (finding overlapping private/public key pairs)! You see, the security of a Bitcoin address is simply based on large numbers! How large? Well, according to my math, 1.157920892373x1077 potential private keys exist (that number represents over 9,500 digits in length! For some perspective, this entire article contains just over 14,000 characters. Therefore, the total number of Bitcoin addresses is so great that the probability of finding an active address with funds is infinitesimal.
So, how do Quantum Computers present a threat?
At this point, you might be thinking, “How can a quantum computer defeat this overwhelming number of possibilities?” Well, to put it simple; Superposition and Entanglement[x]. Superposition allows a quantum bit (qbit) to be in multiple states at the same time. Entanglement allows an observer to know the measurement of a particle in any location in the universe. If you have ever heard Einstein’s quote, “Spooky Action at a Distance,” he was talking about Entanglement! To give you an idea of how this works, imagine how efficient you would be if you could make your coffee, drive your car, and walk your dog all at the same time, while also knowing the temperature of your coffee before drinking, the current maintenance requirements for your car, and even what your dog is thinking! In a nutshell, quantum computers have the ability to process and analyze countless bits of information simultaneously – and so fast, and in such a different way, that no human mind can comprehend! At this stage, it is estimated that the Bitcoin address hash algorithm will be defeated by quantum computers before 2028 (and quite possibly much sooner)! The NSA has even stated that the SHA256 hash algorithm (the same hash algorithm that Bitcoin uses) is no longer considered secure, and, as a result, the NSA has now moved to new hashing techniques, and that was in 2016! Prior to that, in 2014, the NSA also invested a large amount of money in a research program called “Penetrating Hard Targets project”[xi] which was used for further Quantum Computer study and how to break “strong encryption and hashing algorithms.” Does NSA know something they’re not saying or are they just preemptively preparing? Nonetheless, before long, we will be in a post-quantum cryptography world where quantum computers can crack crypto addresses and take all the funds in any wallet.
What are Bitcoin core developers doing about this threat?
Well, as of now, absolutely nothing. Quantum computers are not considered a threat by Bitcoin developers nor by most of the crypto-community. I’m sure when the time comes, Bitcoin core developers will implement a new cryptographic algorithm that all future addresses/transactions will utilize. However, will this happen before post-quantum cryptography[xii]? Moreover, even after new cryptographic implementation, what about all the old addresses? Well, if your address has been actively used on the network (sending funds), it will be in imminent danger of a quantum attack. Therefore, everyone who is holding funds in an old address will need to send their funds to a new address (using a quantum safe crypto-format). If you think network congestion is a problem now, just wait… Additionally, there is the potential that the transition to a new hashing algorithm will require a hard fork (a soft fork may also suffice), and this could result in a serious problem because there should not be multiple copies of the same blockchain/ledger. If one fork gets attacked, the address on the other fork is also compromised. As a side-note, the blockchain Nebulas[xiii] will have the ability to modify the base blockchain software without any forks. This includes adding new and more secure hashing algorithms over time! Nebulas is due to be released in 2018.
Who would want to attack Bitcoin?
Bitcoin and cryptocurrency represent a threat to the controlling financial system of our modern economy. Entire countries have outright banned cryptocurrency[xiv] and even arrested people[xv], and while discrediting it, some countries are copying cryptocurrency to use (and control) in their economy[xvi]! Furthermore, Visa[xvii], Mastercard[xviii], Discover[xix], and most banks act like they want nothing to do with cryptocurrency, all the while seeing the potential of blockchain technology and developing their own[xx]. Just like any disruptive technology, Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies have their fair share of enemies! As of now, quantum computers are being developed by some of the largest companies in the world, as well as private government agencies. No doubt, we will see a post-quantum cryptography world sooner than most realize. By that point, who knows how long “3 letter agencies” will have been using quantum technology - and what they’ll be capable of!
What can we do to protect ourselves today?
Of course, the best option is to start looking at how Bitcoin can implement new cryptographic features immediately, but it will take time, and we have seen how slow the process can be just for scaling[xxi]. The other thing we can do is use a Bitcoin address only once for outgoing transactions. When quantum computers attack Bitcoin (and other crypto currencies), their first target will be addresses that have outgoing transactions on the blockchain that contain funds. This is due to the fact that when computers first attempt to crack a Bitcoin address, the starting point is when a transaction becomes public. In other words, when the transaction is first signed – a signed transaction is a digital signature derived from the private key, and it validates the transaction on the network. Compared to classical computers, quantum computers can exponentially extrapolate this information. Initially, Bitcoin Core Software might provide some level of protection because it only uses an address once, and then sends the remaining balance (if any) to another address in your keypool. However, third party Bitcoin wallets can and do use an address multiple times for outgoing transactions. For instance, this could be a big problem for users that accept donations (if they don’t update their donation address every time they remove funds). The biggest downside to Bitcoin Core Software is the amount of hard-drive space required, as well as diligently retaining an up-to-date copy of the entire blockchain ledger. Nonetheless, as quantum computers evolve, they will inevitably render SHA256 vulnerable, and although this will be one of the first hash algorithms cracked by quantum computers, it won’t be the last!
Are any cryptocurrencies planning for the post-quantum cryptography world?
Yes, indeed, there are! Here is a short list of ones you may want to know more about:
IOTA[xxii] IOTA uses Winternitz one-time signatures[xxiii]. As the name suggests, an address is considered compromised once it signs a transaction on the network, and, therefore, you can only send from an address one time before it’s compromised.
ADA (Cardano)[xxiv] The Cardano roadmap lists quantum resistant signatures using “BLISS.” While BLISS is a strong hashing method, it has an estimated lifespan with classical computers of 6000 signatures (usages)[xxv] but this number could be significantly reduced with quantum tech.
Ethereum[xxvi] The Ethereum network, as well as many more blockchain networks, use the SHA3[xxvii] hash algorithm which is superior to SHA256. Although this is considered by some to be resistant, it is not technically quantum resistant. There is talk of using Lamport Signatures[xxviii] in the future of Ethereum. Although it is not definite at this point, it’s great to see the developers proactive.
QRL (Quantum Resistant Ledger)[xxix] This blockchain concept was conceived in 2016 and is currently in beta testing. Using XMSS (Extended Merkle Signature Scheme) trees combined with Winternitz one-time signatures (but not one time!), it’s fast, salable and truly quantum resistant. If you have not yet checked out this project, I highly suggest you do. To understand why this project is truly post-quantum cryptography ready, do your own due diligence and read the QRL whitepaper.
Although I am in no way associated with any project listed above, I do hold coins in all as well as Bitcoin, Litecoin and many others. The thoughts above are based on my personal research, but I make no claims to being a quantum scientist or cryptographer. So, don’t take my word for anything. Instead, do your own research and draw your own conclusions. I’ve included many references below, but there are many more to explore. In conclusion, the intention of this article is not to create fear or panic, nor any other negative effects. It is simply to educate. If you see an error in any of my statements, please, politely, let me know, and I will do my best to update the error. Thanks for reading!
In the past weeks I heard a lot pros and cons about IOTA, many of them I believe were not true (I'll explain better). I would like to start a serious discussion about IOTA and help people to get into it. Before that I'll contribute with what I know, most things that I will say will have a source link providing some base content.
The pros and cons that I heard a lot is listed below, I'll discuss the items marked with *. Pros
Many users claim that the network infinitely scales, that with more transactions on the network the faster it gets. This is not entirely true, that's why we are seeing the network getting congested (pending transactions) at the moment (12/2017). The network is composed by full-nodes (stores all transactions), each full-node is capable of sending transactions direct to the tangle. An arbitrary user can set a light-node (do not store all transactions, therefore a reduced size), but as it does not stores all transactions and can't decide if there are conflicting transactions (and other stuff) it needs to connect to a full-node (bitifinex node for example) and then request for the full-node to send a transaction to the tangle. The full-node acts like a bridge for a light-node user, the quantity of transactions at the same time that a full-node can push to the tangle is limited by its brandwidth. What happens at the moment is that there are few full-nodes, but more important than that is: the majority of users are connected to the same full-node basically. The full-node which is being used can't handle all the requested transactions by the light-nodes because of its brandwidth. If you are a light-node user and is experiencing slow transactions you need to manually select other node to get a better performance. Also, you need to verify that the minimum weight magnitude (difficulty of the Hashcash Proof of Work) is set to 14 at least. The network seems to be fine and it scales, but the steps an user has to make/know are not friendly-user at all. It's necessary to understand that the technology envolved is relative new and still in early development. Do not buy iota if you haven't read about the technology, there is a high chance of you losing your tokens because of various reasons and it will be your own fault. You can learn more about how IOTA works here. There are some upcoming solutions that will bring the user-experience to a new level, The UCL Wallet (expected to be released at this month, will talk about that soon and how it will help the network) and the Nelson CarrIOTA (this week) besides the official implementations to come in december.
We all know that currently (2017) IOTA depends on the coordinator because the network is still in its infancy and because of that it is considered centralized by the majority of users. The coordinator are several full-nodes scattered across the world run by the IOTA foundation. It creates periodic Milestones (zero value transactions which reference valid transactions) which are validated by the entire network. The coordinator sets the general direction for the tangle growth. Every node verifies that the coordinator is not breaking consensus rules by creating iotas out of thin air or approving double-spendings, nodes only tells other nodes about transactions that are valid, if the Coordinator starts issuing bad Milestones, nodes will reject them. The coordinator is optional since summer 2017, you can choose not implement it in your full-node, any talented programmer could replace Coo logic in IRI with Random Walk Monte Carlo logic and go without its milestones right now. A new kind of distributed coordinator is about to come and then, for the last, its completely removal. You can read more about the coordinator here and here.
These are blockchain-based cryptocurrencies (Bitcoin) that has miners to guarantee its security. Satoshi Nakamoto states several times in the Bitcoin whitepaper that "The system is secure as long as honest nodes collectively control more CPU power than any cooperating group of attacker nodes". We can see in Blockchain.info that nowadays half of the total hashpower in Bitcoin is controlled by 3 companies (maybe only 1 in the future?). Users must trust that these companies will behave honestly and will not use its 50%> hashpower to attack the network eventually. With all that said it's reasonable to consider the IOTA network more decentralized (even with the coordinator) than any mining-blockchain-based cryptocurrency You can see a comparison between DAG cryptocurrencies here
Some partnerships of IOTA foundation with big companies were well known even when they were not officialy published. Some few examples of confirmed partnerships are listed below, others cofirmed partnerships can be seem in the link Partnerships with big companies at the pros section.
So what's up with all alarming in social media about IOTA Foundation faking partnerships with big companies like Microsoft and Cisco? At Nov. 28th IOTA Foundation announced the Data Marketplace with 30+ companies participating. Basically it's a place for any entity sell data (huge applications, therefore many companies interested), at time of writing (11/12/2017) there is no API for common users, only companies in touch with IOTA Foundation can test it. A quote from Omkar Naik (Microsoft worker) depicted on the Data Marketplace blog post gave an idea that Microsoft was in a direct partnership with IOTA. Several news websites started writing headlines "Microsoft and IOTA launches" (The same news site claimed latter that IOTA lied about partnership with Microsoft) when instead Microsoft was just one of the many participants of the Data Marketplace. Even though it's not a direct partnership, IOTA and Microsoft are in close touch as seen in IOTA Microsoft and Bosch meetup december 12th, Microsoft IOTA meetup in Paris 14th and Microsoft Azure adds 5 new Blockchain partners (may 2016). If you join the IOTA Slack channel you'll find out that there are many others big companies in close touch with IOTA like BMW, Tesla and other companies. This means that right now there are devs of IOTA working directly with scientists of these companies to help them integrate IOTA on their developments even though there is no direct partnership published, I'll talk more about the use cases soon.
We are excited to partner with IOTA foundation and proud to be associated with its new data marketplace initiative... - Omkar Naik
IOTA's use cases
Every cryptocurrency is capable of being a way to exchange goods, you pay for something using the coin token and receive the product. Some of them are more popular or have faster transactions or anonymity while others offers better scalablity or user-friendness. But none of them (except IOTA) are capable of transactioning information with no costs (fee-less transactions), in an securely form (MAM) and being sure that the network will not be harmed when it gets more adopted (scales). These characteristics open the gates for several real world applications, you probably might have heard of Big Data and how data is so important nowadays.
Data sets grow rapidly - in part because they are increasingly gathered by cheap and numerous information-sensing Internet of things devices such as mobile devices, aerial (remote sensing), software logs, cameras, microphones, radio-frequency identification (RFID) readers and wireless sensor networks.
It’s just the beginning of the data period. Data is going to be so important for human life in the future. So we are now just starting. We are a big data company, but compared to tomorrow, we are nothing. - Jack Ma (Alibaba)
There are enormous quantities of wasted data, often over 99% is lost to the void, that could potentially contain extremely valuable information if allowed to flow freely in data streams that create an open and decentralized data lake that is accessible to any compensating party. Some of the biggest corporations of the world are purely digital like Google, Facebook and Amazon. Data/information market will be huge in the future and that's why there so many companies interested in what IOTA can offer. There are several real world use cases being developed at the moment, many of them if successful will revolutionize the world. You can check below a list of some of them.
Not having your wallet set up properly (min weight 14, etc.)
Problems that could be easily avoided with a better understand of the network/wallet or with a better wallet that could handle these issues. As I explained before, some problems during the "congestion" of the network could be simply resolved if stuff were more user-friendly, this causes many users storing their iotas on exchanges which is not safe either. The upcoming (dec 2017) UCL Wallet will solve most of these problems. It will switch between nodes automatically and auto-reattach transactions for example (besides other things). You can have full a overview of it here and here. Also, the upcoming Nelson CarrIOTA will help on automatic peer discovery for users setup their nodes more easily.
IOTA Vulnerability issue
On sept 7th 2017 a team from MIT reported a cryptographic issue on the hash function Curl. You can see the full response of IOTA members below.
Funds were never in danger as such scenarios depicted on the Neha's blogpost were not pratically possible and the arguments used on the blogpost had'nt fundamentals, all the history you can check by yourself on the responses. Later it was discovered that the whole Neha Narula's team were envolved in other concurrent cryptocurrency projects Currently IOTA uses the relatively hardware intensive NIST standard SHA-3/Keccak for crucial operations for maximal security. Curl is continuously being audited by more cryptographers and security experts. Recenlty IOTA Foundation hired Cybercrypt, the world leading lightweight cryptography and security company from Denmark to take the Curl cryptography to its next maturation phase.
It took me a couple of days to gather the informations presented, I wanted it to make easier for people who want to get into it. It might probably have some mistakes so please correct me if I said something wrong. Here are some useful links for the community.
This is my IOTA donation address, in case someone wants to donate I will be very thankful. I truly believe in this project's potential. I9YGQVMWDYZBLHGKMTLBTAFBIQHGLYGSAGLJEZIV9OKWZSHIYRDSDPQQLTIEQEUSYZWUGGFHGQJLVYKOBWAYPTTGCX
This is a donation address, if you want to do the same you might pay attention to some important details:
Create a seed for only donation purposes.
Generate a address and publish it for everyone.
If you spend any iota you must attach a new address to the tangle and refresh your donation address published before to everyone.
If someone sends iota to your previous donation address after you have spent from it you will probably lose the funds that were sent to that specific address.
You can visualize how addresses work in IOTA here and here.
This happens because IOTA uses Winternitz one-time signature to become quantum resistent. Every time you spend iota from a address, part of the private key of that specific address is revealed. This makes easier for attackers to steal that address balance. Attackers can search if an address has been reused on the tangle explorer and try to brute force the private key since they already know part of it.
https://preview.redd.it/nzm9ms8g67741.png?width=900&format=png&auto=webp&s=14073c6b2d08e09f4d57dc35a7d5ff3ae54a771a Cryptocurrency halving is a process in which the reward value for each mined transaction block is halved. The halving ensures that the crypto asset will follow a stable emission rate until its maximum supply is reached. Halving plays an important role in cryptocurrencies based on the Proof-of-Work (PoW) consensus algorithm. It is a fundamental factor that inevitably has an effect on the price of the cryptocurrency. In addition, halving significantly affects the interests of miners, since their profit depends on it. In this article we would like to consider the most famous coins which are waiting for halving in the near future.
Zcash (ZEC) is in the top 50 of the biggest cryptocurrencies in the world now. The first block was mined at the end of 2016, so the first halving will take place at the end of 2020. You can follow Zcash halving countdown here. Currently every miner gets 12.5 ZEC per block. But each 4-year period (or 840,000 mined blocks) the volume of ZEC production is halved (from 12.5 to 6.25 to 3.125 to 1.5625, etc.). Early investors put $3 million to fund the Zcash creation. In return for that money they agreed that the investors would receive a small fraction of the Electric Coin Company’s equity along with a slice of the Founder’s Rewards coins. At the moment the activities of ECC are sponsored by a network commission. 20% of the commission goes to the development of the project but in a year the developers will stop receiving their share from the extraction of digital coins. It will be possible to measure the impact of this factor on the Zcash price next year.
Litecoin (LTC) was created in 2011 by former Google employee Charlie Lee. Despite the fact that the coin isn’t new, this asset is still quite popular and has the 6th largest capitalization now. https://preview.redd.it/1g5gpztl67741.jpg?width=1200&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=210b8d4c1f886dd0cd327f0471ac9179ef0f1048 LTC was based on the Bitcoin software code. However, there are several significant differences between these two cryptocurrencies. For example, unlike Bitcoin, Litecoin is based on the Scrypt hash algorithm, not SHA-256. The main difference between the Scrypt hash algorithm and SHA-256: the more powerful software is needed for the Scrypt hash algorithm. That’s why LTC mining is more profitable. In addition, LTC block production time is 2.5 minutes, which is 4 times faster than BTC. Therefore, transactions on the Litecoin network are much faster than Bitcoin. There is the Litecoin Halving History:
Litecoin Halving on August 8th, 2015. The amount of the reward for mining was reduced from 50 to 25 LTC. The first halving happened after 840,000 blocks. By then 50% of LTC (42 million LTC) was mined.
Litecoin Halving on August 5th, 2019. The amount of the reward for mining was reduced from 25 to 12.5 LTC. The second halving happened after 1,680,000 blocks. By that time 75% of LTC (63 million LTC) was mined. Due to the growth in trading volumes, the coin pumped more than 10% breaking the line of $ 100.
The next Litecoin halving is expected to be on August 3rd, 2023. By that moment 252,000,000 blocks will have been unraveled and 73.5 million LTC will have been mined. If you want to follow Litecoin halving countdown, tap here.
November 28th, 2012 – the reward decreased from 50 BTC to 25 BTC. Three months before halving, the price of Bitcoin increased by 18%, and 90 days after this event – by 141%.
July 9th, 2016 – the reward decreased from 25 BTC to 12.5 BTC. Within 90 days before the second halving the Bitcoin’s price increased by 54%. However, mining income has not recovered to its previous values. This could be due to the high competition between the miners, which led to a significant increase in the complexity of Bitcoin mining.
The third Bitcoin halving will happen in 2020. Then the reward for the found block will be reduced from 12.5 to 6.25 BTC. Halving will be repeated every 4 years until the last Bitcoin is mined. It is about to happen in 2140. You can follow the Bitcoin halving countdown here.
According to analysts, before the first halving, which occurred in November 2012, the price of Bitcoin was $ 2.55. And a year after this event it grew to $ 1,037. Curiously, after that, the cryptocurrency fell almost four times, to $ 268. However, after the second halving, BTC not only returned to $ 1,037 but also overcame this level 2.5 times: Bitcoin went up to $ 2,525 in July 2017. Cryptoanalysts note that the growth of cryptocurrency is always affected by halving. The cryptocurrencies rates usually start to grow closer to the date of halving. This theory is illustrated by the situation with BTC which price rose significantly before every halving.
Bitcoin mining is a bit more than just number crunching
The charming cryptocurrency and the many ideas that surface in the minds of the observers typically surround couple of apparent concerns - how does it enter being and what about its flow? The response, nevertheless, is uncomplicated. Bitcoins need to be mined, in order to make the cryptocurrency exist in the Bitcoin market. The mystical developer of Bitcoin, Satoshi Nakamoto, imagined a method to exchange the important cryptocurrencies online, by getting rid of the need for any central organization. For Bitcoins, there's an alternative method to hold the essential records of the deal history of the whole blood circulation, and all this is handled through a decentralized way. The journal that helps with the procedure is called the "blockchain". The essence of this journal may need lots of newsprint for appearing frequently at all popular Bitcoin news. Blockchain broadens every minute, existing on the makers associated with the big Bitcoin network. Individuals might question the credibility, even credibility, of these deals and their recordings into Blockchain. This too is nevertheless warranted, through the procedure of Bitcoin mining. Mining allows production of brand-new Bitcoin and assembling deals to the journal. Mining basically involves fixing of complex mathematical estimations, and the miners utilize enormous computing power to resolve it. The private or 'swimming pool' that resolves the puzzle, positions the subsequent block and wins a benefit too. And, how mining can prevent double-spending? Practically every 10 minutes, impressive deals are mined into a block. So, any disparity or illegitimacy is entirely dismissed. For Bitcoins, mining is not mentioned in a conventional sense of the term. Bitcoins are mined by using cryptography. A hash function described as "double SHA-256" is used. However how tough is it to mine Bitcoins? This can be another inquiry. This depends a lot on the effort and computing power being used into mining. Another element worth pointing out is the software application procedure. For each 2016 blocks, problem involved in mining of Bitcoins is changed by itself just to keep the procedure. In turn, the rate of block generation is kept constant. A Bitcoin problem chart is an ideal procedure to show the mining trouble in time. The trouble level changes itself to increase or down in a straight proportional way, depending upon the computational power, whether it's being sustained or removed. As the variety of miners increase, portion of revenues been worthy of by the individuals decrease, everybody winds up with smaller sized pieces of the revenues. Having private economies and neighborhoods, cryptocurrencies like Dogecoin, Namecoin or Peercoin, are called Altcoins. You can easily track your different cryptocurrency by using reputable portfolio trackers.These are options to Bitcoin. Practically like Bitcoins, these 'cousins' do have a substantial fan-following and enthusiasts who are eager to take a deep plunge into the big ocean and start to mine it. Algorithms used for Altcoin mining are either SHA-256 or Scrypt. Numerous other ingenious algorithms exist too. Alleviate, price and simpleness can render it possible to mine Altcoins on a PC or by using unique mining software application. Altcoins are a bit 'down to earth' compared to Bitcoins, yet changing them into huge dollars is a little challenging. Cryptocurrency enthusiasts can simply hope, if a few of them might witness the comparable huge popularity!
Reasons to believe Julian Assange is in CIA custody and WikiLeaks under duress.
UPDATE (11/01/2017 - UK Date Format): Julian Assange is alive and still in the Embassy. He confirms WikiLeaks has not been compromised. Julian took questions from the Reddit AmA but answered them via live, current and interactive video. He did this very intentionally, and by so doing, was true to his word. Watch a recording of the live event here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rC2EjKYMCeg On the 26th of September 2016 Secretary of State John Kerry (self admitted Skull and Bones member) visited Colombia. WikiLeaks reported that inside sources had confirmed that John Kerry also met with Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa in Ecuador to personally ask Ecuador to stop Assange from publishing documents about Clinton. This was initially fervently denied in the press only later to be confirmed by the Ecuadorian embassy who admitted cutting off Julian’s internet due to pressure from the US. Ecuador wanted to appear impartial. For over four years, the Ecuadorian embassy has been under surveillance and Julian's human rights violated as he has been unlawfully detained termed "illegal arbitrary detention" by a recent UN ruling. During that time, it has been possible for intelligence agencies to gather critical information and build a detailed profile and plan to circumvent Julian's dead man's switch. Both John Kerry and US intelligence agencies know perfectly well that cutting off Julian's internet would have no impact on the release of the leaked emails that are damaging to Hillary's campaign. It has been very clear for a long time that many US officials wanted Julian Assange dead, Hillary Clinton even has remarked, "can't we just drone the guy". The cutting off of Julian's internet access was not for the purpose of preventing the leaks of the Podesta and Hillary emails. Unless intelligence agencies are truly inept, they know that media organisations already have the entire leaked email database and a schedule for release, they also know WikiLeaks staff would continue to leak regardless of Julian's ability to communicate. Removing Assange would not be enough, they would need to circumvent his dead man's switch and then tarnish WikiLeaks reputation. Removing Assange's internet could have the effect of causing Assange to take steps that can be followed to prevent the automatic triggering of his DMS. From the day Julian's internet was cut off, a series of peculiar and uncharacteristic events started to take place. The same day that Julian's internet was cut off, CBS reported that Pamela Anderson visited Assange and had "Tortured" him with a vegan sandwich. A few days before on the 14th, John Podesta tweeted "I bet the lobster risotto is better than the food at the Ecuadorian Embassy". Then on October the 16th the SHA-256 prerelease keys were issued on WikiLeaks twitter feed, although these events are odd and seemingly inconsequential, combined with John Kerry being in the UK from the 16th to the 17th sparked concern among the community for Julian's safety. Assange supporters started to gather at the embassy to keep Assange safe and witness any foul play, some of these witnesses have claimed that a very swift police armed raid took place that lasted only 5 minutes while the crowd was kept under control and prevented from approaching, there have also been reports that they were prevented from taking photographs and that their phones were confiscated. A live periscope feed was also cut off. There have also been some reports of the presence of a mobile jamming van. If Assange has been seized, any recognition by mainstream media would be detrimental to Hillary's campaign. A covert operation with media blackout would be the only effective way of seizing him at this time. On October the 18th Fox News said that Julian Assange would be "arrested soon, maybe in a matter of hours.". The was video was then promptly removed and articles relating to it have disappeared. However, one reddit user was able to find an alternative source and now the video can be found again on YouTube. Although Julian's primary DMS (the release of insurance file encryption keys) did not activate, on October the 18th one of Julian's contingencies did activate, a script was activated that made https://file.wikileaks.org/file publicly visible and set all the file date and time stamps to 01/01/1984 (Orwell reference). This file repository contains many documents that had not been released prior. Staffers Kristinn Hrafnsson and Sarah Harrison, have gone silent while the Ecuadorian embassy is refusing to provide any updates on Assange’s fate. There is a recorded call made to the embassy by a journalist where the receptionist refused to confirm that Julian was at the embassy, she also refused to confirm that Julian was even alive. Julian has not made an appearance at the window of the embassy since being cut off. WikiLeaks suggested in a tweet that its supporters were responsible for the DDOS attacks on the 21st. Neither Assange or WikiLeaks would ever insinuate such a thing. WikiLeaks deceptively tweeted a video of Michael Moore that was actually recorded in June. The video was posted on the 24th of October giving the impression that Michael Moore had been speaking with Assange in the embassy. Why would WikiLeaks do this when they know they are already under suspicion? WikiLeaks have been using their Twitter account to give the appearance of his safety while providing no concrete evidence of his safety. They issued a poll asking what proof would satisfy the public that Julian was safe. WikiLeaks have yet to follow up on the conclusive result of a video or window appearance. Julian Assange is known for his attention to detail and his consistently good spelling and grammar. Currently the twitter feed has very poor spelling, there are numerous uncharacteristic spelling errors, for example, an accomplished cryptographer knows how to correctly spell algorithm and so do WikiLeaks staff. On the 21st of October, there was a massive widespread DDOS attack that disrupted US and EU internet. Also on the 21st of October London City Airport was evacuated. The next day (the 22nd), Gavin MacFayden is reported dead. WikiLeaks made a further blunder by stating his death as the 23rd. There has been a number of high level WikiLeaks deaths recently too. John Jones QC - WikiLeaks U.N. lawyer died on April 16th 2016. Michael Ratner - WikiLeaks chief counsel died on May 11th 2016. Seth Rich - Employee of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) was fatally shot on July 10th 2016 and Gavin MacFadyen - WikiLeaks director died October 22nd 2016. If WikiLeaks has been compromised, it is already preparing the scene for future discrepancy to seriously tarnish WikiLeaks reputation. Nothing WikiLeaks has shared since the 15th of October 2016 should be trusted until Julian has been fully verified as alive. My speculative fears are that Julian has been seized and removed from the Embassy. His internet being cut not being related to the release of the emails, but rather as a component of a plan of 4 years in the making to as secretly as possible remove Assange from the embassy, circumvent his DMS and hijack WikiLeaks with the key team members silenced or under duress. My fears would be confirmed by no future public (mass witnessing and recorded/televised) appearance of Julian Assange discussing recent topics. His death by whatever means after the US presidential election would be extremely suspect. Until proof of life, assume the following compromised: SHA-256 verification Keys posted after the 15th. WikiLeaks submission process and/or platform. WikiLeaks twitter feed. Any WikiLeaks leaks after the 15th October 2016. EDIT: (01/11/2016 - 17:18GMT) URL and spelling corrections. EDIT: Update 16/12/2016 Why demanding proof that WikiLeaks is not compromised is necessary: https://www.facebook.com/events/309760466089922/ (PoL Event @ Ecuadorian Embassy London 17th December 2016) – If you live in the UK please come and let’s get REAL PoL. Please circulate. 1) Still no PGP (GPG) signed short message from WikiLeaks. 2) RiseUp’s warning canary may be dead (RiseUp is believed to host WL Twitter email account) 3) Julian’s internet hasn’t been restored as promised 4) The pre-commitment file hashes released in October do not match the released insurance files 5) Julian’s Swedish defense lawyer Per Samuelson was denied access during case questioning. No one actually saw Julian through the whole process. Additional points: -UK disregard for international law -Capabilities of combined intelligence agencies -WikiLeaks down on October 17th -Mass censorship -WikiLeaks reposting old stuff -See timelines below Various timelines, some with minor errors: https://www.reddit.com/WikileaksTimeline/wiki/indexhttps://www.reddit.com/WhereIsAssange/comments/5dmr57/timeline_of_events_regarding_julian_assange_and/https://regated.com/2016/11/julian-assange-missing/ [Still no PGP (GPG) signed short message from WikiLeaks] Watch this https://youtu.be/GSIDS_lvRv4 video for a simple and good explanation of public/private key cryptography. Here https://riseup.net/en/canary is an example of how a legitimate cryptographically capable organisation uses PGP to sign a message and prove authenticity. WikiLeaks has this setup too. Why do they not use it and prove they are not compromised? WikiLeaks could easily do this. They have their private key. The public has WikiLeaks public key. Even if Julian isn’t in possession of the key, WL most certainly is, no excuse for WL not to prove themselves. This has been heavily requested of WikiLeaks. I’d like to hear from the individuals who claim that their requests were removed (please leave comments). Of all the red flags, not posting a PGP signed message is by far the most damming. If we are to believe that the person in the audio recording at the FCM 2016 is Julian Assange, then what he says about the keys is missing the point. If he himself is not in possession of the key, then WikiLeaks will be. If WikiLeaks use the key to prove themselves, then we know they are not compromised. By extension, we will also be assured that Julian is safe as an uncompromised WikiLeaks would be in a position to confirm his safety and be believed. This audio file includes everything that he says regarding PGP keys: http://picosong.com/UyVw/ (I am not convinced this is Julian). [RiseUp’s warning canary may be dead (RiseUp is believed to host WL Twitter email account)] RiseUp is an activist ISP providing secure services to activists. Its mission is to support liberatory social change via fighting social control and mass surveillance through distribution of secure tools (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Riseup). RiseUp use a warrant canary as a means to protect their users in case RiseUp are ever issued with a NSL or gag order etc (https://riseup.net/en/canary). This is renewed quarterly, assuming no warrant has been issued. However, this is now considerably overdue so the assumption is that the canary is dead, and just like the canaries used in coal mines, everyone should get the hell out of there when it dies. https://theintercept.com/2016/11/29/something-happened-to-activist-email-provider-riseup-but-it-hasnt-been-compromised/. I would be grateful if someone could provide a source for the WikiLeaks twitter email account being hosted by RiseUp. [Julian’s internet hasn’t been restored as promised] https://twitter.com/wikileaks/status/787889195507417088https://twitter.com/wikileaks/status/788099178832420865 On the 26th of September 2016 Secretary of State John Kerry visited Colombia. WikiLeaks reported that inside sources had confirmed that John Kerry also met with Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa in Ecuador to personally ask Ecuador to stop Assange from publishing documents about Clinton. This was initially fervently denied in the press only later to be confirmed by the Ecuadorian Embassy who admitted cutting off Julian’s internet due to pressure from the US. Ecuador wanted to appear impartial. Both John Kerry and US intelligence agencies knew perfectly well that cutting off Julian's internet would have no impact on the release of the leaked emails that were damaging to Hillary's campaign. The cutting off of Julian's internet access was not for the purpose of preventing the leaks of the Podesta and Hillary emails. Unless intelligence agencies are truly inept, they knew that media organisations already have the entire leaked email database and a schedule for release, they also knew WikiLeaks staff would continue to leak regardless of Julian's ability to communicate. Now it is long after the election and Ecuador have still not restored Julian’s internet. Ecuador have no grounds to continue to restrict Julian’s internet. It does nothing apart from increase tensions and raise suspicion. Ecuador have always been supportive of Julian. However, after John Kerry applied pressure on Ecuador, that whole dynamic changed. Ecuador cut Julian's Internet. He then essentially threatened Ecuador, the UK and John Kerry by submitting those pre-commitment file hashes on Twitter. Since then we have only seen hostility towards Julian from all three parties. Ecuador didn't restore his internet and didn't let his lawyer interview him and no one actually saw him. The U.K. Denied him access to Gavin's funeral and denied him access to medical treatment. The UK also continually disregard the UN. The dynamic now is totally different. He has no political friends. It seems that both the UK and Ecuador are now working against Julian and Wikileaks. An environment where a collaborated siege would be feasible. Finally, many have speculated about mobile signals being blocked at the Embassy. I can confirm that there is 4G signal right outside the Embassy door. I was there, with my phone, and tested it. There is no reason to think Julian cannot use a MiFi device (or similar) connected to a cellular network. [The pre-commitment file hashes released in October do not match the released insurance files] Here are the October tweets with the file hashes: https://twitter.com/wikileaks/status/787777344740163584https://twitter.com/wikileaks/status/787781046519693316https://twitter.com/wikileaks/status/787781519951720449 These 3 pre-commitment Twitter posts are SHA-256 file hashes. SHA-256 file hashes are 64 characters long. They are not encryption keys for insurance files. They simply are a mathematical formula for verifying that later released files are genuine and have not been altered. These hashes were released because Julian felt threatened and in increased danger. They specifically targeted the UK FCO, Ecuador and John Kerry. All of whom are key players in his current predicament. On November 7th, WikiLeaks released 3 new insurance files. These files names match the names given in the pre-commitment hash tweets: 2016-11-07_WL-Insurance_EC.aes256 2016-11-07_WL-Insurance_UK.aes256 2016-11-07_WL-Insurance_US.aes256 EC = Ecuador, UK = UK FCO, US = John Kerry. Soon after these files were released, the 3 files hashes were compared to the 3 hashes posted on the 16th of October. They did not match. When this was brought to WikiLeaks attention, WikiLeaks released the following statement in a tweet: https://twitter.com/wikileaks/status/798997378552299521 “NOTE: When we release pre-commitment hashes they are for decrypted files (obviously). Mr. Assange appreciates the concern.” This firstly proved that the hashes and the insurance files were related (a fact that was already clear). Secondly, it was a lie, as it implied historical use of pre-commitment hashes in this manner. Thirdly, the (obviously) comment was also a deception and an insult to supporters. It was not obvious to anyone, not even to our crypto guys in /cryptography/, on the contrary, they thought it highly suspicious. Additionally, what they suggest would be absolutely pointless. Pointless as a threat, as the UK, Ecuador and John Kerry would have no practical way of identifying the documents to confirm the threat. There's absolutely no scenario where an uncompromised WikiLeaks would either post bad file hashes or altered insurance files. [Julian’s Swedish defense lawyer Per Samuelson was denied access during case questioning] This is highly unusual and very suspicious. Also, Jennifer Robinson was not in the room with Assange. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MYR0Pw9LfUQ&feature=youtu.be&t=9m55s and neither was the chief prosecutor http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-37972528 “Swedish chief prosecutor Ingrid Isgren will not speak to Mr Assange directly”. [UK disregard for international law] The UK threat is very real. Back in August 2012 the UK was poised to break international law citing the Diplomatic and Consular Premises Act of 1987 as a basis for entering the Embassy and arresting Assange (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-19259623). It all became very public, very quickly and fortunately never happened (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/southamerica/ecuado9488996/Ecuadors-president-raiding-embassy-to-snatch-Julian-Assange-suicidal.html). I expressed my concern at the time that the UK shouldn’t have even been contemplating such action, let alone threatening it in writing to Ecuador. More recently, the UK disregarded the UN ruling that Julian Assange was being arbitrarily detained (https://www.theguardian.com/media/2016/feb/04/julian-assange-wikileaks-arrest-friday-un-investigation). The UK appealed, and then finally lost their appeal in November (https://www.rt.com/news/368746-un-ruling-free-assange/). Julian has also been refused to leave the Embassy with a police escort for medical treatment as well as denied to attend Gavin MacFadyen’s funeral. The UK’s behaviour is appalling and clearly has no respect for international law. The reported raid on the Embassy during the latter part of October seems more plausible when taken in the context of past behavior. This is the Britain I now live in: http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/gadgets-and-tech/news/investigatory-powers-bill-act-snoopers-charter-browsing-history-what-does-it-mean-a7436251.html. I never used to be ashamed to be British. [Combined capabilities of intelligence agencies] We know much about the combined powers of the intelligence agencies. We know what they are capable of, thanks to the leaks of Edward Snowden. The combined powers of the NSA, CIA and the UK’s GCHQ are capable of pulling off such a massive takeover of Wikileaks. We know the NSA works with other US intelligence agencies, we know that the NSA works with GCHQ. We know about Tempora, we know about JTRIG, we know about PRISM, we know about HAVOK. We know that websites can be altered on the fly, we know that real-time voice profiling is trivial for these agencies. We know that censorship is happening. https://usnewsghost.wordpress.com/2014/07/15/new-july-14-edward-snowden-nsa-leaks-gchq-attacks-and-censors-internet-nsa-leaks-recent/http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/gadgets-and-tech/gchqs-favourite-memes-and-sexual-slang-reveals-a-shared-culture-with-trolls-and-hackers-9608065.htmlhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Temporahttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PRISM_(surveillance_program) The NSA has a remit to be 10 years ahead of the curve. We have commercial products that can be purchased off the shelf today that can easily manipulate audio and video. Just imagine what the NSA and the military are capable of. Real time facial manipulation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ohmajJTcpNk Signs of editing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2O9t_TEE1aw. Both Julian Assange and John Pilger are not filmed together at any time during the interview. There is also no establishing shot. It is also claimed that Assange’s audio is spliced and edited. No recent events mentioned by Assange, only Pilger. Unfortunately, this interview is not sufficient proof of life. What the NSA can’t do, is that they cannot break PGP encryption. This has been expressed by Glenn Greenwald who was one of the journalists that Edward Snowden leaked to. He commented that he knows how secure PGP is because the NSA keep moaning about not being able to crack it in their documents he is reading. This is another reason why a signed PGP message can be the only true proof that WL isn’t compromised. Mathematics cannot lie, people can and do. A compromised WL can’t sign a message without the private key. Edward Snowden revealed that in 2013 the NSA were capable of 3 trillion password attempts per second. As it is now almost 2017, that number will likely be multiple times higher (anywhere between 9 to 15 trillion attempts per second would be my guess based on Moore’s law). https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joint_Threat_Research_Intelligence_Grouphttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Temporahttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PRISM_(surveillance_program)https://www.schneier.com/gchq-catalog/https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Government_Communications_Headquarters [WikiLeaks down on October 17th] The alleged raid on the Embassy supposedly took place on the 17th just after 1am GMT. On Monday the 17th of October 2016 WikiLeaks website was reported down (http://www.isitdownrightnow.com/wikileaks.org.html expand the comments) https://postimg.org/image/6t68fe4kj/. The internet was alive with reports of mass censorship around this time. This all coincides with when the alleged WikiLeaks takeover occurred. It also coincides with John Kerry being in the UK. [Christine Assange audio only radio interview] Julian's family had their identities changed quite a few years ago after receiving death threats. It is odd that his mother has now revealed herself to a news agency. If you do a YouTube search for Christine Assange (her original name), you'll find all the videos are older than 3 years. She's in hiding, not openly talking on radio shows (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Julian_Assange scroll down to the personal life section). [WikiLeaks bitcoin account was emptied on the 18th of November] Interestingly it was after the bitcoin account was emptied that the encoded message in the blockchain was left. Why would WikiLeaks go to all that trouble when they could just sign a message with their PGP key? Is it because bitcoin accounts can be cracked and the PGP keys can’t? [Mass censorship] Facebook is censoring this event (https://www.facebook.com/events/309760466089922/). It has been advertised for weeks now any only a handful of people are attending. Recently Wikileaks was live on FB. 50% of the viewers (roughly 2.5k) were commenting #PoL, #Whereisassange, RIP etc. The live event was only a prerecorded video being played in loop. Once it concluded, the whole Live event along with all the comments including the comments asking for PoL and PGP signed message were deleted. It was as if it never took place. When Julian’s DMS had supposedly been activated, I saw posts in threads being deleted within minutes. Supposedly with encryption keys, but it all happened too fast for anyone to collate. I took PDF printouts of the pages and then later noticed that posts and entire links were taken down. I have PDF's of pages that now no longer exist. I've been following this since mid-October and seen the censorship first hand. I know many people here on reddit witnessed the same (please comment with your experiences). [WikiLeaks reposting old stuff] There are many examples of this already mentioned in the timelines. One for example is the Palantir Technologies report. Palantir Technologies prepared a report on how to destroy WikiLeaks that was leaked in 2011. The proposal was submitted to Bank of America through its outside law firm, Hunton & Williams. Palantir later apologised for their involvement. But WikiLeaks has recently regurgitated it as if it was new. There are many examples of this. I have watched as WikiLeaks have increasingly destroyed their credibility.
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