Disclaimer: This is my editing, so there could be some misunderstandings. For the general view of 'what's going on?' of this dynamic ride... 2/16 dom어제 오전5:44 Just FYI: the team is now working on a plan on how to recover from this and get the network back into operations while also allowing anyone who might have been affected to safely transition.there are no guarantees just yet, but we will do our best to get this through ASAP. Hopefully we will have a concrete action plan tomorrow and will then communicate it. On the vulnerability side, all parties are notified and they are working with law enforcement and external auditors to fully understand how this happened.We will keep you guys posted. dom어제 오전5:47 needless to say,that the vulnerability itself was rather sophisticated and required access on multiple levels to be able to execute it on this scale. Hopefully we will be able to share more soon. [Did the vulnerability existed after or before the audit on trinity?] after the audit dom어제 오전5:51 Currently it looks likethis will only be for recent Trinity Desktop users dom어제 오전5:56 the entire Trinity team did an amazing job and there is not a single person to blame.The attack itself was very sophisticated and targeted at IOTA and Trinity itself. We are already working on v2 where none of this would be possible.We will share our learnings from this publicly and also share what kind of precautionary measures we are taking. dom어제 오전5:58 The community also did an amazing job in helping to guide us through and give assistance to other community members. dom어제 오전5:58 we actually were having discussions a few weeks ago to rename Trinity (because of the religious connotation) Jelle Millenaar [IF]어제 오전6:37 We didn't really have panic and chaos. We actually worked really well together. Jelle Millenaar [IF]어제 오전6:38 [IF members, do you get paid Over Time for all the awesome work or PURE DEDICATION?] nobody considers this overtime or anything. We just contribute because we know it is needed. dom어제 오전7:45 [If dependencies carry this risk, maybe they should've done an official CORE wallet and saved all the fluffy stuff for a third party app.] that's how the new Trinity will work.Sucks that it happened now especially after we wanted to put it into maintenance mode anyways dom어제 오전7:49 [How do we know if the hacker has our seeds?] this is related to a third party, unrelated to IF or IOTA dom어제 오전7:50 we know that this could have only been done through intrusion / collusion of an external source. [Dom are you fully confident to solve all those problems especially regarding the possibility of even more people getting scammed instantly after coo is back again?] yes, relatively sure. That is why we are taking the necessary time to plan accordingly. dom어제 오전7:55 We will provide more information on how this exploit was done soon. All the involved parties are aware of the situation dom어제 오전7:58 [Please give us some time before you start the coo information that we can move to new seed instantly] don't worry, we will get it all sorted out. dom어제 오전8:22 once life is a bit less "tumultuos" I still want to work on that Autonomous Bar concept powered by IOTA (access control, id verification, payment and a bunch of robots) Eric Hop [IF]어제 오후2:44 Pretty good. I'd be surprised if we find more theft bundles. Only found one more today, while building a timeline of the theft. Eric Hop [IF]어제 오후2:50 We have several separate teams. One is looking at how to resume. One is looking at how to be able to rescue the funds. Others are interacting with law enforcement and third parties. I'm part of DAFT. The Data Analysis Forensics Team.Haha Eric Hop [IF]어제 오후3:01 Some if the people in Coordicide team like Hans have been helping out.It was an all hands on deck situation. I actually loved it. We haven't had this much of a team spirit in quite a while.Usually everyone plays in their own sand box.But this time we all played together on the beach. It's such a joy working with so many extremely smart people. With so many eyes on the ball we did not miss much opportunities to figure things out. Eric Hop [IF]어제 오후3:07 And for me personally this was a great time. I am all about puzzle solving. And this was the greatest puzzle of all. With a built-in time limit.Haha Eric Hop [IF]어제 오후3:12 I'm not doing official statements. Butwe have a good overview of what happened and the extent of it. Right now we want to hammer down how to resume without risks and how to safeguard the stuck funds if possible.What is especially funny to me is that the coordinator that everyone was bitching about for years did exactly the thing it was meant to do. It allowed us to halt an exploit that otherwise would have cost everyone dearly. Eric Hop [IF]어제 오후3:15 It was meant as safeguard, training wheels, while we mature. And while we need to remove it due to it being a single point of failure and a bottle neck to scaling, I will be kind of sad to see it go. Yes, IF would have done the same to safeguard funds, if a third party wallet would have been the cause. Just because we can. Eric Hop [IF]어제 오후3:37 Yes it was a manual attack. The sophistication was in the exploit. But he seemed to be not too sophisticated iota-wise.Everyone has their specialties I guess. Eric Hop [IF]어제 오후3:41 And as an aside I wish people would fuck off about the whole iota not being decentralized because of coordinator,when every block chain token is centralized around a few mining pools that seriously disrupt any possibility for positive software development.They fucking hold back everything that influences their bottom line. Which is why Bitcoin and the rest have pretty much been stagnant for years while we move forward constantly. dom오늘 오전7:08 We will release a new Trinity version tomorrow with the fixes implemented.It's not yet the full transition tool, but it's the first step towards fully going back to operations. dom오늘 오전7:09 Just wait for the rest.It is important that we get this 100% right and we are still further investigating, so there is a lot of behind the scenes work happening right now. David Sønstebø오늘 오전8:52 So... Tangle EE Quite cool eh? It's so unfortunate that this asshole managed to distract everything away from one of the biggest steps towards global adoption Let's not give this fuckface further attention.The cause has been identified, law enforcement is involved and mitigation strategy is being worked on. There will be further official updates, but let's not halt the whole IOTA project due to one idiot. David Sønstebø오늘 오전8:56 [Is he identified?] Let's just say that there's a lot of traces. The attacker does not seem to have been too sophisticated. Official update on Monday will provide details. David Sønstebø오늘 오전9:03 [How will this situation affect iotas partners?] My best guess: further increasing our reputation as an organization that solves hard problems efficiently and doesn't shy away from difficulties.Every company in the world has had issues similar to this. Keep in mind that this does not at all affect the protocol/Tangle/IOTA. David Sønstebø오늘 오전9:08 We do have a bounty program. This/these individual/s were not interested in the greater good, pure greed and incompetence David Sønstebø오늘 오전9:10 [Any examples of use cases for DID on the tangle?] Virtually all use cases on Tangle requires a secure identifier and verifiable credentials.What I think will happen is that once Tangle EE ships the first version, all other companies using IOTA will start to implement it [One more question: How transparent will tangle EE be for the community?] 100%. This is why I/we consider Tangle EE to be such a significant milestone,it's not "just" IF, this is a coalition of major companies, start-ups and leading academic institutions building the solutions David Sønstebø오늘 오전9:11 [any ETA for the 1st Version?] That's another good thing, IF won't issue the ETAs, Tangle EE will : David Sønstebø오늘 오전9:12 [What does T(angle)EE do exactly?] It's a partnership and collaboration between several entities to develop and ship code and blueprints that are relevant for product developers and service providers That blog post is a good read to get better comprehension David Sønstebø오늘 오전9:13 It's incredibly important that IF's role slowly but surely decreases in importance. IOTA has to succeed independent of IF post-Coordicide and multiversial-slicing (advanced sharding equivalent) David Sønstebø오늘 오전9:14 I would say that it's an incredible important piece of the puzzle.Naturally Object Management Group (OMG) in Tangle EE will be key here as well, but IOTA is not married to "just" Eclipse. We also work closely with Linux Foundation. However, Tangle EE is very focused David Sønstebø오늘 오전9:22 I don't think IF will disappear, however, it will hopefully be purely R&D-driven in 10 years, whereas the other efforts are taken over by the ecosystem(companies, academia, start-ups and enthusiasts).Even post-Coordicide, we already now have theories on how to go way beyond even that.If we achieve our goal of IOTA being equivalent to TCP/IP, there will naturally be continuous development and research in the foreseeable future.I doubt we will reach complete satisfaction,especially now that smart contracts and oracles enter the equation: there's certainly more work to be done for IF, but my goal is for IF to "simply" be R&D David Sønstebø오늘 오전9:27 Definitely.This is why I coined the requirement for a "grandma on crack"; this is truly how simply using IOTA should be in 2-5 years. Just like very few even know wtf TCP/IP is David Sønstebø오늘 오전9:57 I agree 100% with your assessment, though as would Netflix do with Blockbuster's assessment when they declined to acquire Netflix. At the end of the day it's all about basic economic and human behavioural principles. Human nature does not change, but our environment does.Disruption will continue forever. Darwinian principles will forever remain true. A better option = adoption. It doesn't matter how hard the incumbents fight against it, they either adapt or go Kodak/Nokia/AOL
What is Skywire? Where does it fit in with Skycoin?
Skycoin is a blockchain application platform. We have multiple coins in the platform (Metallicoin, mdl.life, solarbankers.com, etc). We let people launch their own blockchain applications (including coins). There are two parts to Skywire. The first part is the Skywire node. The second part is the hardware. Skywire is one of the first applications we are launching on the Skycoin platform. It is one of our flagship applications that has been in development for several years. Skywire is basically a decentralized ISP on blockchain. It is like Tor, but you are paid to run it. You forward packets for your neighbors and you receive coins You pay coins to other people for forwarding your packets. So it is like Tor but on blockchain and you are paid for running the network. Also, while Tor is slow, Skywire was designed to be faster than the current internet, instead of slower. Skywire is a test application for monetizing excess bandwidth. Eventually the software defined networking technology behind Skywire, will allow us to build physical networks (actual mesh nets) that can begin to replace centralized ISPs. However, the current Skywire prototype is still running over the existing internet, but later we will start building out our own hardware. Skywire is a solution for protecting people’s privacy and is also a solution to net neutrality. If Skycoin can can decentralize the ISPs with blockchain, then we wont have to beg the FCC to protect our rights. Skywire is just a prototype of a larger system. Eventually we will allow people to sell bandwidth, computational resources and storage. On the hardware side, the Skywire Miner is a like a personal cloud, for blockchain applications. It has eight computers in it and you plug it in and you can run your blockchain applications on it. You can even earn coins by renting out capacities to other users on the network.
How would your everyday, average Joe user access the Skywire network? Let's say from their phone…
We designed Skywire and Skycoin to be as usable as possible. We think you should not have to be a software developer to use blockchain applications. Skywire is designed to be “zeroconf”, with zero configuration. You just plug in your node and it works. Its plug and play. Eventually you will be able to buy a Skywire Miner and delegate control of the hardware to a “pool”, who will configure it for you and do all the work, optimize the settings and the pool will just take a small fee for the service and owner of the hardware will receive the rest of the coins their miners are earning. You will just plug in the Skyminer and start earning coins. It will be plug and play. Most users will not know their traffic is being carried over Skywire. Just like they do not know if they are using TCP or UDP. They will just connect their computer to the network with wifi or an ethernet cable and it will work exactly like the internet does now.
Are you completely anonymous on Skywire, or do you need to add a VPN and go through Tor for extra protection?
Skywire is designed, to protect users privacy much better than the existing internet. Each node only knows the previous hop and the next hop for any packet. The contents of the packet are encrypted (like HTTPS), so no one can spy on the data. Since Skywire is designed to be faster than the existing internet, you give up a little privacy for the speed. Tor makes packets harder to trace by reshuffling them and slowing them done. While Skywire is designed for pure speed and performance.
Will Skywire users be able to access traditional internet resources like Google and Facebook over Skywire?
Yes. Most users will not even know they are using Skywire at all. It will be completely invisible to them. Skywire has two modes of operation. One mode looks like the normal internet to the user and the other mode is for special applications designed to run completely inside of the Skywire network. Skywire native apps will have increased privacy, speed and performance, but all existing internet apps will still work on the new network.
How difficult will it be for a traditional e-service to port their products and services to Skywire / Skycoin? Are there plans in place to facilitate those transitions as companies find the exceeding value in joining the free distributed internet?
We are going to make it very easy. Existing companies run their whole internal networks on MPLS and Skywire is almost identical to MPLS, so they wont have to make any changes in most cases.
What is the routing protocol? How are the routes found?
Skywire is source routed. This means that you choose the route your data takes. You can chose routes that offer higher privacy, more bandwidth (for video downloads) or lower latency (for gaming). Skywire puts control of the data back to the user.
I have also understand that the protocols underlying in skywire will be/already are pretty different from the Internet protocols. Taking into account the years of research applied to the current Internet and the several strategies for routing it doesn't seem an easy task to rebuild everything and make it work. Where can be found the information about the routing strategies used in skywire?
The routing strategies are user defined. There is no best routing strategy that is optimal for every user or application. Instead we allow people to choose their routes and policies, based upon the application, time of day, available bandwidth, reliability and other factors. This is actually the way the original internet worked. However, it was scrapped because of the RAM limitations of early computers which only had 4 KB of memory. So the internet was built upon stateless routing protocols because of the limitations of the available computers at the time, not because the networking protocols were the best or highest performance. Today even a cell phone has 4 GB of ram and 1 million times the memory of a computer in the 1980s, so there is no reason to accept these limitations anymore. Our implementation is simpler and faster because we are stripping away the layers of junk that have accumulated. The internet was actually built up piecemeal, without any coherence, coordination or planning. The internet today is a mishmash of different ad-hoc protocols that have been duct taped together over decades, without any real design. Skywire is an re-envisioning of the internet, if it was built today knowing what we know now. This means simplifying the protocols and improving the performance.
How will the routing work if someone from Europe wants to access a video from a node in Australia (for example)? How do the nodes know the next hop if they cant read the origin or destiny of any packet?
If you have a route with N hops, then you contact each of the nodes on the route (through a messaging service) and set the route table on each route. Then when you drop a packet in the route, it gets forwarded automatically. You could have 60 or 120 hops between Australia and Europe and its fine. Each individual node only knows the previous hop and the next hop in the chain. That is all the node needs to know.
Could you estimate a timeline for when Skywire will operate independently from the current ISP infrastructure?
I think Skycoin is a very ambitious project and some parts could take ten or twenty years. Even if we started with a network of a few thousand nodes and we were growing the network over 1% per day, it will still take a decade or two to conquer the Earth. We are going to start with small scale prototypes (neighborhoods), then try cities. I think the first demonstration networks will be working this year.
How will bandwidth be priced in terms of coin hours and who determines this rate?
You could have 40 PHDs each do a thesis on this. The short answer is that an auction model has to be used (similar to Google’s Ad Words auction model) and the auction has to be designed in a way so that the bandwidth prices reach a stable equilibrium. There are parts of Skycoin that are completely open source and public, like the blockchain and consensus algorithm and Skywire. There are secrets like the auction model and pricing, that are designed to protect Skycoin from being forked and to prevent competitors from copying our work. We estimate that if a competitor was to start today, with 2 million dollars a year in R&D, that it would take them a minimum of eight years to develop a working bandwidth pricing model. And from experience in auction models for advertising networks, 80% of the competitors will fail to develop a working model at all. A working, fair, decentralized bandwidth pricing model that was competitive with what we have would take even longer. There are very few people (less than 4) on Earth who have the experience in mathematics, economics, game theory and cryptographic protocols to design the required auction and pricing models. One of Google’s secrets that allows them to dominate the internet advertising industry, is their auction model for ad pricing. That is what allows Google to pay the content producers the most money for their advertising inventory, while charging the advertising buyers the least. Google’s auction models for pricing AdSense inventory are even more secretive and important than Google’s search algorithm. This is one of the most important and secretive parts of Google’s business. Even companies like Facebook, with billion dollar war chests have been unable to replicate to close the algorithm gap in this area. Expertise in these algorithms and their auction and pricing models is one of the reasons that Google has been able to extract advertising premiums over Facebook. Even if a competitor raises a billion dollars and hires all the PHDs in the field and they had ten years to do research, I doubt they would be able to develop anything close to what we have now. The history of bandwidth markets is very interesting and Enron tried to do a trading desk for bandwidth and bandwidth futures and it completely failed. The mathematical stability and predictability of the pricing of bandwidth under adversarial conditions is one of the major problems. For instance, one of our “competitors” suggests that people will be paid coins if someone accesses their content. So why don’t you just put a website and then have 2000 bots go to it, to get free coins! How are they going to stop that. Or if they are pricing bandwidth, if the price is fixed and the price is too low, then people will not build capacity and bandwidth will be insufficient and the network will be slow. Or if the price is variable and adjusts with demands, what will stop someone from buying up the capacity for a link (“Cornering the Market”) to drive the price up 50x on links they control and extort money out of the other people on the network with a fake bandwidth shortage? The pricing algorithm has to be stable under adversarial conditions. It is a very difficult problem, harder than even consensus algorithm research. Even if a competitor had unlimited funding and unlimited time, it is unlikely that they would find a superior solution to what we have and that alone nearly guarantees that we are going to win this market. It gets even more difficult if you need price stability and you admit any type of bandwidth futures, that allow speculation on future prices. This is a kind of problem like Bitcoin consensus algorithm that can only be solved by an act of genius. We have a lot of experience in this area. It is hyper specialized and a very difficult area and is one of the areas that will give Skycoin a strong sustainable advantage.
Will there be a DNS for Skywire to register .sky domains?
Of course. We will definitely add some kind of DNS and name system eventually. Remembering and typing public keys is too difficult. We want to make it as easy as possible. We want people to be able to register aliases (like screen names) so that people can send coins to aliases instead of having to type in addresses every time. This will let people send 5 Skycoin to “@bobcat” instead of sending coins to “23TeSPPJVZ9HvXh6iYiKAaLNQroKg8yCdja”. This will be a revolution in usability.
When operating a Skyminer, will people in my surrounding area see it as a Wifi option on their devices?
You can configure it to expose a wifi access point. It depends on what you are trying to do.
While I plan on running a DIY miner regardless of the payout, will one of the first 6000 DIY miners built to the same spec as the official miner receive a worthwhile payout in Sky coin? What is the requirement for a DIY miner to get whitelisted (and earning Skycoin) on the Skywire testnet?
The reason we have white-listing on the testnet, is to stop too many nodes from joining the network at once. The network can only support so many nodes until we upgrade certain infrastructure (like the messaging/inter-process communication standard). Eventually, all DIY miners will be whitelisted, but there will probably be a queue.
The Sky team is developing antennas by their own instead of buying or using technology already developed, why is such an effort necessary?
You can of course, buy any commercial antenna or wifi system and use it for Skywire. We are developing our own custom antennas, to push performance limitations and experiment with advanced technology, like FPGAs (Field Programmable Arrays) and SDR (Software Defined Radio). Existing wifi has a huge latency (15 milliseconds per hop). We need to make several modification to get that down to 0.5 millisecond per hop. We have several custom PCB boards in development. We have a few secret hardware projects that will be announced when they are ready. For instance, the Skywire Miner was in development for two years before we publicly announced it. Some of our next hardware projects are focused on payments at the point of sale and improving usability, not just the meshnet.
So back in January Steve was asked a question in the skywire group: "Steve, I am not a tech savage, so how can I understand better the safety running a miner if people on the network do DeepWeb stuff? So i will receive and redirect data packets with crazy things and also there is around 128 GB of storage on my miner. How can i have peace of mind of that?" He replied with "If you don’t run an exit node to the open internet it won’t matter you can run relay nodes if you’re worried about it, or proxy specific content." This seems to goes counter to what you mentioned regarding end-to-end encryption with Skywire. Will some people only be relay nodes and some will be exit nodes as well?
I think the question is wrong. You only store content for public keys that you explicitly subscribe to. This means if you do not like particular content or do not want it on your hardware, then you can just blacklist those public keys or don’t subscribe to them. Data never goes on your machine unless you requested it. If you are holding data for a third party such as forwarding packets, it’s always going to be encrypted, so will look like random noise. There will never be anything in the data that causes legal liability. It will look the same as the output of a random number generator.
If using the skyminer, how much bandwidth will be necessary to run it at its best? And what about the router? It's true it has only 100mbits output? Is a 1gigbits connection necessary to reach toprates?
Hold on!!!! Let us get the software and test net running first, lol. We will know once we know what works for the testnet.
What will the price be for future Skynodes (formerly called Skyminers)?
We are working on ways of reducing the cost, such as by buying our own factory, doing custom PCB boards and using different materials. The cheapest Skywire Miner node will be about $30 for a single node miner. We will have a very cheap personal Skywire “hardware VPN” node also. The miners we are shipping now are for powering the network backbone and have 8 computers and are about $800 each. We sold people the miners for 1 BTC each so they can support development, but gave them a Skycoin bonus equal to about 1 BTC worth of Skycoin. Then that money, went to fund the cost for developing the newer hardware.
Building Whalesburg We are getting questions from investors and bloggers who are not professional miners. They know in common words what it means, what hardware miners use but are not so familiar with numbers of this field. We regularly get questions how much profit Whalesburg will bring to our customers. So we decided to write a post which explains the basics of mining ROI.
This article is not for skilled miners; some details are not covered here!
What is typical ROI in mining, how Whalesburg will improve it? Mining ROI hardly depends on the hardware you use (GPU or ASICs), cryptocurrency prices, network difficulty, hashrate and other variables, which changes over time. It means that real data may hardly differ from those provided in this article. Let’s refer to a well-known website Cryptocompare.com on the page of Antminer S9 (https://www.cryptocompare.com/mining/bitmain/antminer-s9-mine). This website is quite popular and has an API used by thousands, so the data seems to be trustworthy. It tells that the price of a single piece of S9 is $2,725, its power consumption equals 1,375W, return per year is $3560 (incl. electricity costs) and ROI equals 130%. This way you will get $3560 — $2725 = $835 net income at the end of the first year if variables below will remain same. The second year will bring you $3560 more. Note calculations was made using price of 1 BTC = $10516, electricity price $0.12 per kW/h and network difficulty = 18,633,837 PH/s. Now let’s take a look at whattomine.com website on SHA 256 algorithm: screenshot is in a Medium post As you can see, there is an option to mine UNIT which more profitable than BTC by 31% (!!!). So switching some of the pool’s hashpowers to this coin and converting UNIT to BTC on the fly could increase miners profit. This is the main concept of Whalesburg smart mining pool. There is another problem — low UNIT’s network hashrate which can prevent this coin being such a profitable one if we will switch all our powers to it. We are developing an algorithm which will vary hash powers among new coins and split profits between all participants. So, if someone will mine COIN1 with 130% BPR (BTC Profit Rate) and other will mine Bitcoin with 100% BPR — each of them both will get 15% more profit than just mining BTC. A module which responds for payouts will convert them to BTC by intent and split rewards among participants with PPLNS method. Same picture we can see on other algorithms. For example our MVP use Ethash: screenshot is in a Medium post Will your partners who are mining hosting companies hold WBT or they will propose Whalesburg to their clients? All partners will have a will to hold WBT tokens for their clients, and they agree to such terms. The fee of 0,45% is cheap; additionally, they get a monitoring tool built to fulfill their needs. It is a win-win deal. Clients of our partners are investors, not IT geeks. They don’t need to hold these tokens to see increased ROI in reports. We offer services to any size mining facilities. They will want to hold our tokens and use our software. Can you make some more concrete arguments in favor of Whalesburg regarding time-saving and increased ROI? Time-saving: Now miners need to set a bunch of tools like EthMiner, Autominer, Claymore, Afterburner, and others. We incorporate all this functionality in one. Miners need to analyze the profitability of dozens of coins, look for good pools, create and run a .bat or .sh file to stop/run miners. They need to understand this all! Miners need to monitor the state of their hardware manually, and if something happened (drops of hash rate), they need to become a hardware doctors and to heal their farms. Let me tell you a story. Miner has a mining rig built with 8 GPU cards. He mines ETH with X MH/s. Suddenly he finds that hash rate become 0.6X MH/s — this is a 40% drop!!! But all the cards are working, responding at the same delay and have the same hash rate which is (0.6X)/8 MH/s. So Miner takes out GPUs one by one and restarts this rig until he founds one GPU card which causes a problem. He replaces this card with another one, and his rig’s hash rate returns to X MH/s. He still doesn’t know what is wrong with his GPU card. The Whalesburg monitoring tool can prevent failures and diagnose problems automatically and notify Miner. Even try to heal it disconnecting card programmatically. Return rate: A long time ago we experimented with my friends who own mining rigs and who were mining ETH. We’ve chosen most popular “smart mining pools” like Nicehash, Miner gate, suprnova.cc and solo mining mode with Claymore miner. The last mode was to mine with Whalesburg proof-of-concept solution — it was EthMiner + Autominer which connects to a pool of the most profitable coin among EtHash algorithm. So we connected five mining farms of the same hash rate to each of these modes and start to gather live statistics. A week was gone, and we calculated profits, rates, metrics: Lowest was solo mode mining with Claymore (obvious reasons — low hash rate, high difficulty). And still it brought to rig owner around 80% to average experiment income; Then go Nicehash and Minergate with 90% of average income, and both more-less were looking similar. Suprnova.cc was the best among all the previous and gave 115% of average experiment income. Whalesburg.com chart was hopping from one coin to another frequently at the start, then it stabilized and showed 125% of average income. Why we generate more profits, strong part: The first server-side auto-witching algorithm. The one in the world — all other smart pools leave this to a clients side. Transparent fees. Blockchain-based accounting shows we are not hiding a penny and using actual exchange rates. We have more Ethash coins already, at the start. We have other architecture that other mining pools, the proprietary software we coded our own from scratch. To be confident we can promise at least +15% income to whatever they use now. Weaknesses: Whalesburg is in the early stage. We have just released an MVP. Our pool’s hashrate on start will be low comparing to the biggest pools on the market. This is what we need to work out, but it will be easy. — Whalesburg team — Join telegram chat: https://t.me/whalesburg Test our MVP: http://pool.whalesburg.com Stay tuned!
Bitcoin mining is a term that everyone in the cryptocurrency and even many outsiders are familiar with. This is a process performed by high-powered computers (also known as nodes), which solve complicated computational math problems. While distinct, there are certain similarities between bitcoin mining and actual mining for precious metals such as gold, for example. Both processes are carried out with the intention to earn a reward. Furthermore, bitcoins actually exist in the bitcoin protocol but they haven’t been brought out yet – just as gold exists in the ground but it hasn’t been mined yet. But the aim of bitcoin mining is, however, twofold. For once, when the above-mentioned high-powered computer or any other type of mining hardware, for that matter, successfully solves the complex math problem on the network of Bitcoin, they produce a new bitcoin. On the other hand, by solving the computational math problems, bitcoin miners are actually making the payment network a secure through the proof-of-work consensus algorithm.
WHY IS BITCOIN MINING NECESSARY?
In order to break down bitcoin mining, there are a few important considerations that need to be taken into account. Consumers tend to trust different types of printed fiat currencies because they are backed by central banks. In the US, for instance, this is the Federal Reserve. This is even true for digital payments made with fiat currencies. Bitcoin, however, is not regulated by any central authority. It can be said that it is ‘backed’ by the computing power, which secures the network. This vast network of computers and mining hardware records transactions and make sure that they are accurate. Unlike central authorities, however, bitcoin miners are spread throughout the entire world and record the transactional information on a public ledger available to anyone. This ledger can be viewed using a block explorer and there are many different websites that provide this service. In other words, bitcoin mining is necessary for two different reasons – first, it is needed to create new bitcoin and second, it’s needed to confirm the transactional information. So, in theory, if you don’t want to buy Bitcoin, you can earn it through mining. Whether or not that’s efficient for you as an individual miner, however, is a different story.
HOW DOES BITCOIN MINING WORK?
In order for a bitcoin miner to get block rewards, there are two conditions which need to be met. First, the miner needs to confirm a certain amount of transactions and second, which is the trickiest part, solve a complex computational math problem. Put simply, if that’s at all possible, each miner is competing with all of the others to come up with a 64-digit hexadecimal number which is referred to as a “hash” which is less than or equal to the hash which is targeted. In other words, the computer will be spitting out different hashes at a certain rate per second guessing all of the possible 64-digit numbers until they reach the correct solution. Therefore, computational power is essential – the more powerful your mining equipment, the larger hash rate per second you’d be able to achieve. This is why the Bitcoin mining hardware is particularly important. Naturally, the cost of mining would be based on a the operation costs such as electricity, internet connection, hardware maintenance, and so forth. This is the main reason for which back in 2013 bitcoin miners started to use machines which were specifically designed for mining cryptocurrencies. These are called Application-Specific Integrated Circuits or ASIC mining, for short. ASIC mining devices can cost a serious amount of money but are more efficient than traditional computers. There are a few important things to be considered when it comes to BTC mining. These are some of its pillar components, so to speak.
One of the things to be aware of in the world of Bitcoin mining is blocks. Transaction data is recorded in files which are called blocks. Think of it as a page from your city’s recordbook. Blocks are organized into a chain in chronological order – hence, blockchain. New transactions, as they are being confirmed by miners, go into new blocks, with each new block is being added to the end of the chain. This is why blockchain is also referred to as records of blocks.
Is Bitcoin mining profitable? This is probably the most commonly asked question. Unfortunately, there is no one answer. Block rewards are what miners compete for. Other cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin Cash, for instance, also have their own block rewards which differ from those of Bitcoin. At inception, every single bitcoin block reward was worth 50 BTC. However, the protocol works in a way where the block reward is being halved after 210,000 blocks have been discovered. This takes roughly around four years to complete. As of July 9th, 2016, the reward for discovering one block is 12.5 BTC. So is Bitcoin mining profitable? It depends. One would have to calculate the current block reward based on the current prices and compare that to the cost of mining, which varies from miner to miner. It’s worth noting that the reward for successful Bitcoin miners will drop once again in May 2020 and it will decrease to 6.25 BTC per block from the current 12.5.
To put it in the most basic terms, hash rate represents the speed at which bitcoin mining hardware can guess the correct hash. Therefore, the faster your hash rate is the higher the chances of discovering the new block you have. BTC mining has become highly competitive and, as such, you need to consider getting powerful bitcoin mining hardware. Individual miners, can, on the other hand, take advantage of cloud mining or mine a coin with lower difficulty, but more on that later.
The difficulty of bitcoin mining is adjusted frequently in order to maintain an average time of about 10 minutes to process a block. The rate is recalculated every 2,016 blocks. In case you wonder why ten minutes – it’s because bitcoin developers have decided that this is the time needed for a steady and diminishing flow of producing new coins.
WHAT IS A MINING POOL
When it comes to cryptocurrency mining, a mining pool is the combined resources by miners who are sharing their overall computational power over a network in order to split the reward equally based on the amount of work that they have contributed to discovering a new block. A “share” would be awarded to each member of the mining pool who manages to present a valid partial proof of his work. Mining pools became popular as the difficulty of bitcoin mining increased over time and when it became apparent that individual miners could no longer compete with bigger pools and large-scale mining operations.
WHAT IS CLOUD MINING
Cloud mining, on the other hand, is what allows individual miners to participate in the process without having to purchase particularly expensive bitcoin mining hardware. If you want to take part in BTC mining but you don’t want to spend the time and resources to get powerful machines, you can use shared processing power provided by remote data centers. The only thing you’d need is a home computer. Generally, there are three types of cloud mining that you can take advantage of. These include:
You can lease a mining machine which is hosted by the provider.
Virtual Hosted Mining
This is a method which would require you to create a virtual private server and after that install your own mining software.
Lease Hash Power
Cloud mining also allows you to lease a certain amount of hash power without having the best bitcoin mining hardware. This is likely to be the most popular method of all. Most of the providers offer comprehensive calculators that you can take advantage of to determine the current profitability based on the resources you are ready to spend. However, it’s important to pay special attention when it comes to cloud mining as there are fraudulent service providers. It’s crucial to make proper and in-depth due-diligence, especially if you intend to lease hash power. One of the largest cloud Bitcoin mining companies out there is Genesis Mining.
ENERGY CONSUMPTION: THINGS TO BE AWARE OF
Mining bitcoin is intentionally designed to be energy intensive. The computational power needed to solve the abovementioned complex math problems requires a lot of electricity to power up the specialized mining hardware. On the flipside, it requires even more resources to attack the network than to defend it, making Bitcoin the most secure blockchain today. In fact, there is an entire pseudo-environmentalist brigade which aims to have the regular user believe that Bitcoin mining would somehow be the death of the planet. A lot of their arguments revolve around the fact that large data centers used for carrying out the math computations use tremendous amount of electricity. However, Bitcoinist recently outlined three reasons for which this rhetoric is complete nonsense. According to clean energy researcher Katrina Kelly-Pitou, the entire debate on the overall electricity consumption by bitcoin mining facilities is headed in the wrong direction. The research outlines that electricity consumption can increase while, at the same time, have minimal impact on the environment. This is because those facilities gradually begin to use more efficient, sources of energy which are renewable. Not only does this make mining more profitable, but it also lowers the impact on the environment. The researcher also outlined that banks use three times more electricity than Bitcoin’s network. What is more, a brand new report concluded that 80 percent of Bitcoin mining is running on renewable energy. This is unsurprising since miners are naturally incentivized to seek the cheapest and cleanest sources of energy, many of which are renewables such as hydroelectricity (e.g. Iceland). If you’re worried about Bitcoin consuming too much energy, you might want to think twice about lighting up the Christmas lights this year. That’s right – the lights that American consumers alone use to decorate their homes for the occasion make up a gigantic 6.63 billion kilowatt hours of electricity consumption every single year. That’s more than the entire national energy consumptions of a lot of the developing countries every year. For example, both Ethiopia and El Salvador used less electricity per year. However, if you decide to set up a mining rig in your garage, you can most definitely expect a more expensive electricity bill next month.
BEST BITCOIN MINING HARDWARE: THINGS TO CONSIDER
There are a few key parameters to look out for when it comes to choosing the best bitcoin mining hardware. These include:
Naturally, you want to be aware of how much electricity does your miner consume. The lower this number, the better.
As we explained above, the hash rate is essential for bitcoin mining. The larger this number is, the better the machine is, generally.
This measurement accounts for the efficiency of your machine. If this particular number is low, it means that the machine will consume less power for the same amount of work done by the machine. There is a range of different devices produced by some of the largest companies in the field such as Bitmain Technologies, Canaan Creative, Halong Mining, Innosilicon Technology, and others of the kind.
WHAT ELSE CAN YOU MINE?
Bitcoin is not the only cryptocurrency which can be mined. It’s worth noting, though, that if you are using a specialized cryptocurrency mining hardware you’d have to check the compatible digital currencies, as some of the devices would only allow you to mine selected cryptocurrencies. However, apart from Bitcoin, other popular choices include Bitcoin Cash, Monero, Dogecoin, Litecoin, and so forth.
If you managed to make it thus far, you should have a general understanding of the main principles behind bitcoin mining and why it is essential to its network. At the same time, bitcoin mining represents an alternative method to acquire the digital currency. Of course, if you don’t feel like investing time and efforts into it, let alone designating specialized bitcoin mining hardware, you can always check our detailed guide on to how to buy cryptocurrencies. We’ve gone in depth on how to buy Bitcoin with Paypal, credit card, debit card, and even with cash. We’ve also covered some of the most popular platforms where you can buy Bitcoin. Once you’ve done that, you can hop to our comprehensive guide to Bitcoin wallets and determine whether you want a web-based one or an offline, hardware solution instead.
The Mike Hearn Show: Season Finale (and Bitcoin Classic: Series Premiere)
This post debunks Mike Hearn's conspiracy theories RE Blockstream in his farewell post and points out issues with the behavior of the Bitcoin Classic hard fork and sketchy tactics of its advocates I used to be torn on how to judge Mike Hearn. On the one hand he has done some good work with BitcoinJ, Lighthouse etc. Certainly his choice of bloom filter has had a net negative effect on the privacy of SPV users, but all in all it works as advertised.* On the other hand, he has single handedly advocated for some of the most alarming behavior changes in the Bitcoin network (e.g. redlists, coinbase reallocation, BIP101 etc...) to date. Not to mention his advocacy in the past year has degraded from any semblance of professionalism into an adversarial us-vs-them propaganda train. I do not believe his long history with the Bitcoin community justifies this adversarial attitude. As a side note, this post should not be taken as unabated support for Bitcoin Core. Certainly the dev team is made of humans and like all humans mistakes can be made (e.g. March 2013 fork). Some have even engaged in arguably unprofessional behavior but I have not yet witnessed any explicitly malicious activity from their camp (q). If evidence to the contrary can be provided, please share it. Thankfully the development of Bitcoin Core happens more or less completely out in the open; anyone can audit and monitor the goings on. I personally check the repo at least once a day to see what work is being done. I believe that the regular committers are genuinely interested in the overall well being of the Bitcoin network and work towards the common goal of maintaining and improving Core and do their best to juggle the competing interests of the community that depends on them. That is not to say that they are The Only Ones; for the time being they have stepped up to the plate to do the heavy lifting. Until that changes in some way they have my support. The hard line that some of the developers have drawn in regards to the block size has caused a serious rift and this write up is a direct response to oft-repeated accusations made by Mike Hearn and his supporters about members of the core development team. I have no affiliations or connection with Blockstream, however I have met a handful of the core developers, both affiliated and unaffiliated with Blockstream. Mike opens his farewell address with his pedigree to prove his opinion's worth. He masterfully washes over the mountain of work put into improving Bitcoin Core over the years by the "small blockians" to paint the picture that Blockstream is stonewalling the development of Bitcoin. The folks who signed Greg's scalability road map have done some of the most important, unsung work in Bitcoin. Performance improvements, privacy enhancements, increased reliability, better sync times, mempool management, bandwidth reductions etc... all those things are thanks to the core devs and the research community (e.g. Christian Decker), many of which will lead to a smoother transition to larger blocks (e.g. libsecp256k1).(1) While ignoring previous work and harping on the block size exclusively, Mike accuses those same people who have spent countless hours working on the protocol of trying to turn Bitcoin into something useless because they remain conservative on a highly contentious issue that has tangible effects on network topology. The nature of this accusation is characteristic of Mike's attitude over the past year which marked a shift in the block size debate from a technical argument to a personal one (in tandem with DDoS and censorship in /Bitcoin and general toxicity from both sides). For example, Mike claimed that sidechains constitutes a conflict of interest, as Blockstream employees are "strongly incentivized to ensure [bitcoin] works poorly and never improves" despite thousands of commits to the contrary. Many of these commits are top down rewrites of low level Bitcoin functionality, not chump change by any means. I am not just "counting commits" here. Anyways, Blockstream's current client base consists of Bitcoin exchanges whose future hinges on the widespread adoption of Bitcoin. The more people that use Bitcoin the more demand there will be for sidechains to service the Bitcoin economy. Additionally, one could argue that if there was some sidechain that gained significant popularity (hundreds of thousands of users), larger blocks would be necessary to handle users depositing and withdrawing funds into/from the sidechain. Perhaps if they were miners and core devs at the same time then a conflict of interest on small blocks would be a more substantive accusation (create artificial scarcity to increase tx fees). The rational behind pricing out the Bitcoin "base" via capacity constraint to increase their business prospects as a sidechain consultancy is contrived and illogical. If you believe otherwise I implore you to share a detailed scenario in your reply so I can see if I am missing something. Okay, so back to it. Mike made the right move when Core would not change its position, he forked Core and gave the community XT. The choice was there, most miners took a pass. Clearly there was not consensus on Mike's proposed scaling road map or how big blocks should be rolled out. And even though XT was a failure (mainly because of massive untested capacity increases which were opposed by some of the larger pools whose support was required to activate the 75% fork), it has inspired a wave of implementation competition. It should be noted that the censorship and attacks by members of /Bitcoin is completely unacceptable, there is no excuse for such behavior. While theymos is entitled to run his subreddit as he sees fit, if he continues to alienate users there may be a point of mass exodus following some significant event in the community that he tries to censor. As for the DDoS attackers, they should be ashamed of themselves; it is recommended that alt. nodes mask their user agents. Although Mike has left the building, his alarmist mindset on the block size debate lives on through Bitcoin Classic, an implementation which is using a more subtle approach to inspire adoption, as jtoomim cozies up with miners to get their support while appealing to the masses with a call for an adherence to Satoshi's "original vision for Bitcoin." That said, it is not clear that he is competent enough to lead the charge on the maintenance/improvement of the Bitcoin protocol. That leaves most of the heavy lifting up to Gavin, as Jeff has historically done very little actual work for Core. We are thus in a potentially more precarious situation then when we were with XT, as some Chinese miners are apparently "on board" for a hard fork block size increase. Jtoomim has expressed a willingness to accept an exceptionally low (60 or 66%) consensus threshold to activate the hard fork if necessary. Why? Because of the lost "opportunity cost" of the threshold not being reached.(c) With variance my guess is that a lucky 55% could activate that 60% threshold. That's basically two Chinese miners. I don't mean to attack him personally, he is just willing to go down a path that requires the support of only two major Chinese mining pools to activate his hard fork. As a side effect of the latency issues of GFW, a block size increase might increase orphan rate outside of GFW, profiting the Chinese pools. With a 60% threshold there is no way for miners outside of China to block that hard fork. To compound the popularity of this implementation, the efforts of Mike, Gavin and Jeff have further blinded many within the community to the mountain of effort that core devs have put in. And it seems to be working, as they are beginning to successfully ostracize the core devs beyond the network of "true big block-believers." It appears that Chinese miners are getting tired of the debate (and with it Core) and may shift to another implementation over the issue.(d) Some are going around to mining pools and trying to undermine Core's position in the soft vs. hard fork debate. These private appeals to the miner community are a concern because there is no way to know if bad information is being passed on with the intent to disrupt Core's consensus based approach to development in favor of an alternative implementation controlled (i.e. benevolent dictator) by those appealing directly to miners. If the core team is reading this, you need to get out there and start pushing your agenda so the community has a better understanding of what you all do every day and how important the work is. Get some fancy videos up to show the effects of block size increase and work on reading materials that are easy for non technically minded folk to identify with and get behind. The soft fork debate really highlights the disingenuity of some of these actors. Generally speaking, soft forks are easier on network participants who do not regularly keep up with the network's software updates or have forked the code for personal use and are unable to upgrade in time, while hard forks require timely software upgrades if the user hopes to maintain consensus after a hardfork. The merits of that argument come with heavy debate. However, more concerning is the fact that hard forks require central planning and arguably increase the power developers have over changes to the protocol.(2) In contrast, the 'signal of readiness' behavior of soft forks allows the network to update without any hardcoded flags and developer oversight. Issues with hard forks are further compounded by activation thresholds, as soft forks generally require 95% consensus while Bitcoin Classic only calls for 60-75% consensus, exposing network users to a greater risk of competing chains after the fork. Mike didn't want to give the Chinese any more power, but now the post XT fallout has pushed the Chinese miners right into the Bitcoin Classic drivers seat. While a net split did happen briefly during the BIP66 soft fork, imagine that scenario amplified by miners who do not agree to hard fork changes while controlling 25-40% of the networks hashing power. Two actively mined chains with competing interests, the Doomsday Scenario. With a 5% miner hold out on a soft fork, the fork will constantly reorg and malicious transactions will rarely have more than one or two confirmations.(b) During a soft fork, nodes can protect themselves from double spends by waiting for extra confirmations when the node alerts the user that a ANYONECANSPEND transaction has been seen. Thus, soft forks give Bitcoin users more control over their software (they can choose to treat a softfork as a soft fork or a soft fork as a hardfork) which allows for greater flexibility on upgrade plans for those actively maintaining nodes and other network critical software. (2) Advocating for a low threshold hard forks is a step in the wrong direction if we are trying to limit the "central planning" of any particular implementation. However I do not believe that is the main concern of the Bitcoin Classic devs. To switch gears a bit, Mike is ironically concerned China "controls" Bitcoin, but wanted to implement a block size increase that would only increase their relative control (via increased orphans). Until the p2p wire protocol is significantly improved (IBLT, etc...), there is very little room (if any at all) to raise the block size without significantly increasing orphan risk. This can be easily determined by looking at jtoomim's testnet network data that passed through normal p2p network, not the relay network.(3) In the mean time this will only get worse if no one picks up the slack on the relay network that Matt Corallo is no longer maintaining. (4) Centralization is bad regardless of the block size, but Mike tries to conflate the centralization issues with the Blockstream block size side show for dramatic effect. In retrospect, it would appear that the initial lack of cooperation on a block size increase actually staved off increases in orphan risk. Unfortunately, this centralization metric will likely increase with the cooperation of Chinese miners and Bitcoin Classic if major strides to reduce orphan rates are not made. Mike also manages to link to a post from the ProHashing guy RE forever-stuck transactions, which has been shown to generally be the result of poorly maintained/improperly implemented wallet software.(6) Ultimately Mike wants fees to be fixed despite the fact you can't enforce fixed fees in a system that is not centrally planned. Miners could decide to raise their minimum fees even when blocks are >1mb, especially when blocks become too big to reliably propagate across the network without being orphaned. What is the marginal cost for a tx that increases orphan risk by some %? That is a question being explored with flexcaps. Even with larger blocks, if miners outside the GFW fear orphans they will not create the bigger blocks without a decent incentive; in other words, even with a larger block size you might still end up with variable fees. Regardless, it is generally understood that variable fees are not preferred from a UX standpoint, but developers of Bitcoin software do not have the luxury of enforcing specific fees beyond basic defaults hardcoded to prevent cheap DoS attacks. We must expose the user to just enough information so they can make an informed decision without being overwhelmed. Hard? Yes. Impossible. No. Shifting gears, Mike states that current development progress via segwit is an empty ploy, despite the fact that segwit comes with not only a marginal capacity increase, but it also plugs up major malleability vectors, allows pruning blocks for historical data and a bunch of other fun stuff. It's a huge win for unconfirmed transactions (which Mike should love). Even if segwit does require non-negligible changes to wallet software and Bitcoin Core (500 lines LoC), it allows us time to improve block relay (IBLT, weak blocks) so we can start raising the block size without fear of increased orphan rate. Certainly we can rush to increase the block size now and further exacerbate the China problem, or we can focus on the "long play" and limit negative externalities. And does segwit help the Lightning Network? Yes. Is that something that indicates a Blockstream conspiracy? No. Comically, the big blockians used to criticize Blockstream for advocating for LN when there was no one working on it, but now that it is actively being developed, the tune has changed and everything Blockstream does is a conspiracy to push for Bitcoin's future as a dystopic LN powered settlement network. Is LN "the answer?" Obviously not, most don't actually think that. How it actually works in practice is yet to be seen and there could be unforseen emergent characteristics that make it less useful for the average user than originally thought. But it's a tool that should be developed in unison with other scaling measures if only for its usefulness for instant txs and micropayments. Regardless, the fundamental divide rests on ideological differences that we all know well. Mike is fine with the miner-only validation model for nodes and is willing to accept some miner centralization so long as he gets the necessary capacity increases to satisfy his personal expectations for the immediate future of Bitcoin. Greg and co believe that a distributed full node landscape helps maintain a balance of decentralization in the face of the miner centralization threat. For example, if you have 10 miners who are the only sources for blockchain data then you run the risk of undetectable censorship, prolific sybil attacks, and no mechanism for individuals to validate the network without trusting a third party. As an analogy, take the tor network: you use it with an expectation of privacy while understanding that the multi-hop nature of the routing will increase latency. Certainly you could improve latency by removing a hop or two, but with it you lose some privacy. Does tor's high latency make it useless? Maybe for watching Netflix, but not for submitting leaked documents to some newspaper. I believe this is the philosophy held by most of the core development team. Mike does not believe that the Bitcoin network should cater to this philosophy and any activity which stunts the growth of on-chain transactions is a direct attack on the protocol. Ultimately however I believe Greg and co. also want Bitcoin to scale on-chain transactions as much as possible. They believe that in order for Bitcoin to increase its capacity while adhering to acceptable levels of decentralization, much work needs to be done. It's not a matter of if block size will be increased, but when. Mike has confused this adherence to strong principles of decentralization as disingenuous and a cover up for a dystopic future of Bitcoin where sidechains run wild with financial institutions paying $40 per transaction. Again, this does not make any sense to me. If banks are spending millions to co-op this network what advantage does a decentralized node landscape have to them? There are a few roads that the community can take now: one where we delay a block size increase while improvements to the protocol are made (with the understanding that some users may have to wait a few blocks to have their transaction included, fees will be dependent on transaction volume, and transactions <$1 may be temporarily cost ineffective) so that when we do increase the block size, orphan rate and node drop off are insignificant. Another is the immediate large block size increase which possibly leads to a future Bitcoin which looks nothing like it does today: low numbers of validating nodes, heavy trust in centralized network explorers and thus a more vulnerable network to government coercion/general attack. Certainly there are smaller steps for block size increases which might not be as immediately devastating, and perhaps that is the middle ground which needs to be trodden to appease those who are emotionally invested in a bigger block size. Combined with segwit however, max block sizes could reach unacceptable levels. There are other scenarios which might play out with competing chains etc..., but in that future Bitcoin has effectively failed. As any technology that requires maintenance and human interaction, Bitcoin will require politicking for decision making. Up until now that has occurred via the "vote download" for software which implements some change to the protocol. I believe this will continue to be the most robust of options available to us. Now that there is competition, the Bitcoin Core community can properly advocate for changes to the protocol that it sees fit without being accused of co-opting the development of Bitcoin. An ironic outcome to the situation at hand. If users want their Bitcoins to remain valuable, they must actively determine which developers are most competent and have their best interests at heart. So far the core dev community has years of substantial and successful contributions under its belt, while the alt implementations have a smattering of developers who have not yet publicly proven (besides perhaps Gavin--although his early mistakes with block size estimates is concerning) they have the skills and endurance necessary to maintain a full node implementation. Perhaps now it is time that we focus on the personalities who many want to trust Bitcoin's future. Let us see if they can improve the speed at which signatures are validated by 7x. Or if they can devise privacy preserving protocols like Confidential Transactions. Or can they figure out ways to improve traversal times across a merkle tree? Can they implement HD functionality into a wallet without any coin-crushing bugs? Can they successfully modularize their implementation without breaking everything? If so, let's welcome them with open arms. But Mike is at R3 now, which seems like a better fit for him ideologically. He can govern the rules with relative impunity and there is not a huge community of open source developers, researchers and enthusiasts to disagree with. I will admit, his posts are very convincing at first blush, but ultimately they are nothing more than a one sided appeal to the those in the community who have unrealistic or incomplete understandings of the technical challenges faced by developers maintaining a consensus critical, validation-heavy, distributed system that operates within an adversarial environment. Mike always enjoyed attacking Blockstream, but when survey his past behavior it becomes clear that his motives were not always pure. Why else would you leave with such a nasty, public farewell? To all the XT'ers, btc'ers and so on, I only ask that you show some compassion when you critique the work of Bitcoin Core devs. We understand you have a competing vision for the scaling of Bitcoin over the next few years. They want Bitcoin to scale too, you just disagree on how and when it should be done. Vilifying and attacking the developers only further divides the community and scares away potential future talent who may want to further the Bitcoin cause. Unless you can replace the folks doing all this hard work on the protocol or can pay someone equally as competent, please think twice before you say something nasty. As for Mike, I wish you the best at R3 and hope that you can one day return to the Bitcoin community with a more open mind. It must hurt having your software out there being used by so many but your voice snuffed. Hopefully one day you can return when many of the hard problems are solved (e.g. reduced propagation delays, better access to cheap bandwidth) and the road to safe block size increases have been paved. (*) https://eprint.iacr.org/2014/763.pdf (q) https://github.com/bitcoinclassic/bitcoinclassic/pull/6 (b) https://lists.linuxfoundation.org/pipermail/bitcoin-dev/2015-Decembe012026.html (c) https://github.com/bitcoinclassic/bitcoinclassic/pull/1#issuecomment-170299027 (d) http://toom.im/jameshilliard_classic_PR_1.html (0) http://bitcoinstats.com/irc/bitcoin-dev/logs/2016/01/06 (1) https://github.com/bitcoin/bitcoin/graphs/contributors (2) https://lists.linuxfoundation.org/pipermail/bitcoin-dev/2015-Decembe012014.html (3) https://toom.im/blocktime (beware of heavy website) (4) https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=766190.msg13510513#msg13510513 (5) https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=10774773 (6) http://rusty.ozlabs.org/?p=573 edit, fixed some things. edit 2, tried to clarify some more things and remove some personal bias thanks to astro
boldninjaLet's all give a warm welcome to @synth from SkyCoin.net and for taking the time to do this AMA synth *hello mike Hi Synth jakethepanda Hey @synth thrice.pi Hey synth dr10 Hi boldninja I think we can start - you guys know the drill. Give him some time to respond (no more than 2-3 questions on backlog so he can catch up) dr10 How would you - shortly & in easy words - sum-up the advantages of SkyCoin to magazines and non-crypto people? mgaruccio Can you explain a bit about the mesh net? Is it just an mpls network between nodes or is there something deeper going on? michaelthecryptoguy Whassup @synth tranzer hi synth. I have a question - are those coins that are not in circulation in any cold wallets since only a portion is currently available according to CMC? What would you say is the 1 unique feature that Skycoin has? synth It is very difficult, because Skycoin is a very large project and already has +6 years of development. Different parts of the project have different objectives. The cryto, coin part is about solving the problems with the existing consensus algorithms. Being able to do +300 transactions a second, transactions in seconds instead of minutes (faster than credit cards), eliminating miners, eliminating block rewards (eliminating inflation) and eliminating 51% attack and the other problems with mining. then there are other repos and experimental projects under github.com/skycoin such as a meshnet and distributed VPN prototype, where people will be paid coins for forwarding traffic. Also prototypes of distributed social media application, with peer to peer data replication and different experimental projects. Research into immutable data structures for next generation internet. Some of them are very radical. dr10 How does the Network consensus algorithm Obelisk work and differ from widely known algorithms like Proof of Work and Proof of Stake? mgaruccio So how much exists today? Could I build an app on the platform if I wanted to? mike In terms of the rate of progress, what is currently your greatest limiting factor - like funding, manpower, currently available technology? synth
Can you explain a bit about the mesh net? Is it just an mpls network between nodes or is there something deeper going on?
It is not actually a meshnet. It is software defined networking, it is much more powerful than just meshnet. Its a new type of networking and new completely new protocol and networking namespace, independent of the existing internet. It supports source routing, while the existing internet does hot potato routing, so never achieves optimal latencies. It supports multi-homing, which IPv6 does not (Which is critical for when we have gigabit or terabit networking and multi-redundant bandwidth paths) It has default oppurunistic crypto, both link layer and end to end; so everything is encrypted by default, unlike the current internet. It has store and forward networking and will operate in Africa or even under conditions where latencies are in the minutes or hours and packet loss is excessive. Where existing protocols cannot operate reliability. It is much more robust than IPv4/IPv6 or TCP/ip It has improved privacy. If a packet takes a route that is 10 hops, each hop only knows the previous node in the route and the next node in the route. It is not like IPv4 where each packet gives the source and destination. The privacy level is something that does not exist on the current internet. IP addresses are replaced by public key and no one can read traffic to a destination, without knowing the private key of the public key that identifies the destination. The system does not need 3rd parties or certificate authorities. The design is a revolution.
are those coins that are not in circulation in any cold wallets since only a portion is currently available according to CMC?
The coins are locked into 100 addresses, each with 1 million coins each. And they are released sequentially. There is a complicated locking procedure and releasing new coins requires unamious consent and a shared secret among a group of developers. Anyone in the shared secret group can block distribution of more coins (to stop the problem that killed NXT). So by design the coins were supposed to be difficult to distribut, there had to be a good reason or justification before a distribution would be approved. mike What are the hardware requirements to operate a wireless Skywire (the name for the protocol described above) Node? arc-over-water nxt i think is doing ok.. synth
How does the Network consensus algorithm Obelisk work and differ from widely known algorithms like Proof of Work and Proof of Stake?
PoS and PoW use miners. Miners receive new coins every block as a block reward. So miners are making money and will fight to control the network. An everyone will suffer because the newly created coins represent inflation. Skycoin was designed to eliminate mining and eliminate the inflation. No block rewards, no new coins. And we needed to develop a new consensus algorithm to do that and there are only a few methods that work, for these constraints. The consensus algorithm is based upon Ben-Or's randomization procedure for achieving consensus in a distributed system, with some improvements for detecting adversarial or malicious nodes who are trying to prevent the consensus process. There are white papers on skycoin.net about the specifics. I would call it "network consensus" and it uses a sort of Web of Trust (WoT), where if the people creating blocks are doing a bad job or attacking the network, then the community can get rid of them. At the same time, the people who control the network, do not have any real power to attack the network except by slowing down transactions and being annoying, so even if they become malicious the only issue is how to get rid of them and select new people. mike Any idea when Skywire will be released and ready to test on hardware nodes (testnet or mainnet)? mgaruccio So if there is no block reward what is the incentive to run a node? vega What will be the actual function of Skycoin (the coin itself)? Will the coin be used as currency, as transfer of value in and between all these various developing functionalities, semi-separate projects to tie them all together or it's function will be more limited? michaelthecryptoguy Do you have an idea on the specs of a node that would be required? In the beginning? What about with 10,000 users? (edited) synth
nxt i think is doing ok..
There were three people that each owned 30% of the coin. One decided he wanted out and began dumping. NXT was over 150 million I think. When he started dumping, it basicly killed NXT. Skycoin's distribution was designed to stop dumping by the founders and early people. After Skycoin gets to 30% of the total coins distributed, there will probably a hard time lock on the remaining coins, so that a maximum of 5% of the remaining coins can be released per year. So the distribution for the other 70% of the coins will take a minimum of 14 years (and could be longer). We cannot even sell the rest of the coins, because if we sold 10% of the total now at $5 per coin, it would be 50 million or something and we cannot spend or even use that amount of money. Not at this stage. Ethereum spent 30 million or 70 million in their first year or two after the ICO and then nearly went bankrupt. Silicon Valley wages and offices etc. We have been very conservative and have kept costs down and kept them responsible. Now we have coins like EOS and they want to raise a billion dollars and have not produced anything yet, do not hav a blockchain and I have no idea what they would spend that money on, but they are throwing $350,000 parties in time square for marketing/PR etc... arc-over-water what prevents you from selling? anybody can spend that amount of money? nxt is a newer platform than sky, market value is $220 million plus $166 million, I get what you are saying but the evidence is wrong. Community is huge and active in Nxt. But you say it is killed, i dont get it? synth
What will be the actual function of Skycoin (the coin itself)? Will the coin be used as currency, as transfer of value in and between all these various developing functionalities, semi-separate projects to tie them all together or it's function will be more limited?
Yes. Bitcoin has no purpose. An altcoin does two things - check your balance - send money to other people Two features - check balance - send For a coin to have value, people need to be forced to buy it to consume specific services. There has to be stuff for people to spend the coin on, that there is demand for. So Bitcoin is really just a purely speculative asset. It generates no cashflow and its value is determined by perception or social convention. Ideally, Skycoin would start off as a "better Bitcoin" (faster, more secure, new algorithm, simplier, etc), then over time we would build up an ecosystem and have some type of backing and tie the coin's value into the network and usebase. The mesh netork (skywire) is good, because it gives something for people to do to get coins and it allows people to consume the coins. You can run your internet traffic through a VPN that tunnels over Skywire and maybe it will be a nominal amount (actually absurdly small amount of money), but there would be real economic activity and a real userbase and community using the coin. Not just speculation. Later on the scope is much wider. arc-over-water So the skycoin wallet will be a VPN for our internet usage? synth
nxt is a newer platform than sky, market value is $220 million plus $166 million, I get what you are saying but the evidence is wrong. Community is huge and active in Nxt. But you say it is killed, i dont get it?
What I am saying, is that NXT would be a lot further along than it is now and probably around where Ethereum is, except for that mistake in the distribution and keeping it too concentrated. It set them back by years. They did not consider what the impact on the price would be, over the long term, when one of the early whales started selling off or decided he wanted out. arc-over-water But they did the same again with IOTA, same lead dev.. Its over a $Billion they released and let the market price distribute synth
So the skycoin wallet will be a VPN for our internet usage?
The VPN is just one application, that uses bandwidth over Skywire. There are several things in development. This is a BBS like 4chan, that is completely distributed, with CXO. https://github.com/skycoin/bbs It will run over Skywire also, This is like building a whole new internet from scratch. The apps that run on it are going to specialized and privacy focused, etc GitHub skycoin/bbs Contribute to bbs development by creating an account on GitHub. mike So Skycoin is a Proof of Resource coin where its value is actually backed by provision of a useful service, in this case private and secure networking? Are there plans to add decentralized storage and even distributed processing to it? arc-over-water so these 100 separate million coin accounts will be 100 ICOs or how is the distribution patterned? is it written into the code or up to the devs? rockyj !calculate slackbot Custom Responsehttps://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1FGo3FkC3uSWXGHatPQyny2brMWjAIJsHFCR-Lhkl_m0/edit#gid=0 synth
So if there is no block reward what is the incentive to run a node?
running a consensus node does not cost anything. You can run it on a raspberry pi. The important thing is that if the people doing consensus are doing a bad job, that the community can get rid of them and replace them. The other important thing, is that they can be audited and determined automatically if they are obeying the protocol. the miners in skycoin are not very powerful and cannot do anything except slow down transactions. They are unable to spend other people's money without their private keys, so the consensus/mining nodes are almost irrelevent. It is not like Bitcoin where the miners can hold the network hostage or act selfishly (driving up the transactions fees for their own personal benefit and delaying any innovations that would improve bitcoin for everyone, etc).
So Skycoin is a Proof of Resource coin where its value is actually backed by provision of a useful service, in this case private and secure networking? Are there plans to add decentralized storage and even distributed processing to it?
We have decentralized storage, which is called CXO. But only the bandwidth is monetized by Skywire. We do not nickle and dime and try to attach a coin cost to every API call. Everything that should be free is free. So its a different philosphy. On top of CXO we also have distributed social media applications (simmilar to Steemit) CXO is very similar to IFPS, but simplier and designed for our internal infrastructure and with our crypto standards, instead of being a mismash. mike Is it possible for Skycoin to choose the best paths and route around bad or slow nodes as damage to the network, in effect reducing their impact on consensus? looks like you answered the question above while I was typing... tranzer How many tx/s can skycoin handle? What are block times? thrice.pi 300 right? ^ arc-over-water on your website it says you will have a NON- Turing complete lisp language? synth
so these 100 separate million coin accounts will be 100 ICOs or how is the distribution patterned? is it written into the code or up to the devs?
We will have a distribution page, up on the website soon. Its complicated. Skywire, is designed to pull coins out of circuation, through a sort of tithe on network activity and it does automatic buy backs effectively. So the distribution will actually peak and then decline. But one distribution is from the locked coins, and the locked coins are freed, then circulate, then end up at the foundation (from the skywire tithe are pulled out of circulation), but still count towards the free float. The coin holders also receive a coinhour dividend and there will be a market rate conversion between coin hours and Skycoins and coinhours are the actual currency for the Skywire network. If you do not have enough coin hours, then you sell Skycoin for CoinHour at the market rate, to purchase bandwidth; but if you have a lot of coins then you have enough coin hours for downloading movies or VPN or whatever you are doing and it is essentially free. So there is a dual level economic structure. Both with coin buybacks to pull coins out of circulation and with a dividend or incentive to encourage users to hold the coin if they are using the network. arc-over-water so there will be two currencies, holding one reserves the other synth
Is it possible for Skycoin to choose the best paths and route around bad or slow nodes as damage to the network
Yes. This is very important. The person dialing a connection, chooses the path of the connection! You can choose the lowest latency path for video games or Skype, and choose highest throughput paths for video downloads etc. Or can choose paths through specific nodes or facilities or countries, for security concerns and to minimize the number of points that the traffic could be intercepted at. mike Will Skycoin still have the node subsidy plan for setting up and registering the mesh nodes like originally planned? dr10 When do you plan to be able to present your planned technology and services to the masses? When can they use what you try do accomplish? synth
on your website it says you will have a NON- Turing complete lisp language?
That is probably an error. LOL. We will have a new website soon. There is no scripting language on the skycoin blockchain. Each transaction is constant time (for efficiency and security and to achieve the highest transaction rate and to keep the coin simple). However, we have a language called CX in development, which is a next generation language that is beyond "smart contracts" and the toy things on ethereum. It uses immutable datastructures and is something completely new. Most of the skycoin "smart contracts" will probably be off blockchain or in personal blockchains and we do not want to shove all the data onto the main chain, because forcing everyone to download everyone one elses contracts it the world is just spamming the blockchain to death. There are better ways to do it.
Will Skycoin still have the node subsidy plan for setting up and registering the mesh nodes like originally planned?
Yes. We are going to get from 20% to 30% distributno of the coins, through network incentives for people running Skywire nodes, consensus nodes and services. I think this is going to be massive for marketing. And it is the best way to get the coins out to the users, instead of all the coins being held by whales samuelvihollandia I read how you suggest Skycoin could be used for VPN connections, is this the largest use case you see? arc-over-water Maidsafe has been working on the redesign of the net for about ten years, what are you doing the same and what different? synth
I read how you suggest Skycoin could be used for VPN connections, is this the largest use case you see?
No. This is just something easy, that we have working. Its not the largest applicatoin at all. 80% of internet traffic right now is bitorrent and the bitorrent sites are being systematically shutdown and driven off the internet. They wont go away, but will jut go underground. What.cd (largest music tracker, with 800k people) was just shut down, bakabt (largest anime tracker) has gone closed registration, Nyantorrent etc... User communities of millions of people will be migrating from the clearnet (the existing corporate shit-net) to the "new internet". We are going to see people migrating by the millions, whole user communities of millions of people. arc-over-water Are you a corporation or foundation or charity? Registered? I am not sure i have seen anything about who you are? What is the dev team size? Background? - Maidsafe is open and clear so is IOTA and Stellar etc. Can you let us know who you and your team are? Especially you are talking about 15 year and up obligations.. techbytes Do we need to hold skycoin to run Skywire nodes or consensus nodes like masternodes from other coins? synth
Maidsafe has been working on the redesign of the net for about ten years, what are you doing the same and what different?
Maidsafe is in version 2 or 3. Maidsafe will not have a real coin until version 9. Each version takes them about two or three years. Maidsafe will not be "done" or ready for atleast 18 years at this rate. Skycoin has been in development for ~6 years and the meshnet for 4 years and it will be finished in a few months. To the poin that people can start using it. Skycoin is similar to maidsafe in the objective, but has a different approach and architecture and primitives. We did not try to do everything, but focused on a smaller, tractable core and got that done. There will be multiple projects in this space, but few teams are able to plan on the time horizon necisary for building a new internet or able to design each of the components of a system this large, or figure out how to do it so that it is useful at each stage of construction of a project that may take a decade. (edited) mike Can you see a way for Ark and Skycoin to build on each other in a synergistic manner? I'm all for not reinventing the wheel, especially when it looks like it will be replaced with antigravity like Skycoin. I see Skycoin as essentially replacing TCP/IP and providing mesh network type functionality at the hardware level, Ark would run on top of it as a top level application layer. arc-over-water are you up to date on Maidsafe, they are nearly out of Alpha and its more like release early next year? But that being said, Maidsafe says once it is released it is like a virus or AI type, so does Tau Chain, and also Autonomic by HunterMinerCrafter, are we heading towards AI with Maid, Sky Tau and Autonomic? dr10 smartbridge now! :kappa: mike So Skycoin would act as a sort of global decentralized cloud server to build on top of. To communicate, it is more like sharing encrypted files to selected recipients than it is sending messages or hosting sites on a specific server. synth
Are you a corporation or foundation or charity? Registered? I am not sure i have seen anything about who you are? What is the dev team size? Background?
I think there are over ~60 people who have worked on Skycoin or have made major contributions. Its really a project from the darknet. Many of the contributors are anonymous. Some of them have security clearances and were in the military industrial complex and one of them worked at the San Diego Naval Defence Research Lab and a lot of the idea for the networking protocols came out of public sector academic researched, funded from there. We also have a lot of very very early Bitcoin people, hardcore crypto people that predate Bitcoin and an Ethereum core developer, etc.. On the Chinese side we have an early investor in Alibaba and telecom investor. And are doing pilot with china aviation group (owns four publicly traded airline companies) and apparently now Sinopec (which is 2nd largest publicly traded corporation in world). Then we have people who are part of israeli and US intelligence and are probably doing some sort of money laundering or phychological operations background, who just showed up for some reason. This group seems very interested in the "applications" of these coins and how to improve tranaction privacy and the specifics of the CoinJoin protocol implementation. We got a lot of advice from people experienced in forensic accounting and what they wanted to see and where they felt Bitcoin was deficient and where it leaked metadata. Then a bunch of PHD level people doing research into distributed database consensus algorithms and another group doing programming language research. Then a lot of people from the deep darknet, anon, frog twitter and cipher punks and bitorrent communities. (really should be listed as two seperate groups). And people from the Russian darknet community. We have like eight Ivans. (edited)
I see Skycoin as essentially replacing TCP/IP and providing mesh network type functionality at the hardware level, Ark would run on top of it as a top level application layer.
Yes. The key functionality is two things - connecting to people by public key (networking) - distributing self validating, immutble data peer to peer (transactions, blocks etc... content addressible storage) And you can build almost anything on those two building blocks. The whole internet will eventually be rewritten on top of those primitives and it will replace many of the existing protocols. arc-over-water Who is the entity that is funding this? I think you have done 2 ICOs? How much did you receive? The first was 10c and the second was @ 50c per coin, released 6 million, is that correct? samuelvihollandia Are you planning to enter a different exchange market soon? arc-over-water Have you personally been in Sky from the start? What members have? Who allocates the ICO money etc... I hope you understand that decentralization with investment is a two edged sword, we invest in people but we cannot know these people.... So... we question.. (edited) thrice.pi with all these outside parties that helped to build skycoin and bring it where it is today who are the main core team who will help to keep all these cool features running. Will these outside parties be recruited for the long haul? synth
Who is the entity that is funding this? I think you have done 2 ICOs? How much did you receive? The first was 10c and the second was @ 50c per coin, released 6 million, is that correct?
The people who funded the project for the first four years, were early bitcoin and deep crypto people; who were unhappy with the fact that Bitcoin and the other alts did not seem concerned about the core issues at all. They gave us over 1200 bitcoin I think, over several years and did not ask for anything in return. The early Skycoin devs were doing academic research, architecture and new algorithms. Prototyping and simulation. The later stage people were more project managers and doing implementation. We did four ICOs for small amounts, to fund development and to allow developers working on the project to buy in. The first ICO I remember was at $0.10 per coin and the price now is about $4.00 per coin, so its up ~35x or 40x, but when you consider the Bitcoin price going from $100 to $3000, the increase has not been so much. lol (edited) arc-over-water With the price up 35x in about 1 year, is it not now time to cool the run up and release another ICO? At what amount of coins released and what procedure? mike Would Intel Edison or Joule, or Samsung Artik 10 work well as a Skywire wireless node? They have 2 Gb-8 Gb RAM, 8-64 Gg eMMC storage, 802.11n wireless, bluetooth, and some with Zigbee? synth
Have you personally been in Sky from the start? What members have? Who allocates the ICO money etc... I hope you understand that decentralization with investment is a two edged sword, we invest in people but we cannot know these people.... So... we question.
I think there wer three different groups that merged together in first three years, that had similar objectives. Because the code was in different language. There was python, C code and then eventually golang and the golang code became the basis for the current codebase. The way the coin allocations work, is that it requires unamimious consent for releasing coins and it has to be for a specific, ear marked purpose and can be blocked by any of the devs. Then there is a pool of coins in bitcoin for various project managers to allocate. And that is an operational fund for paying developers, contractors, marketing etc. Then different people have different responsibilities. Then we also have corporate funding and sponsorship and some companies paying our full time devs etc, which helps a lot. arc-over-water Silicon Valley (TV SHOW) recently had their decentralized web running on a network or refrigerators? So i would guess, smart phones, smart gadgets? Home gadgets etc could add services and receive rewards from Sky? mike best would be a totally open source and publicly audited manufactured system on a chip for the nodes to prevent any backdoors. Even chip designers now don't really know what they're putting into the chips since they just drag and drop black boxes known as IP cores into the ASIC designs. synth
With the price up 35x in about 1 year, is it not now time to cool the run up and release another ICO? At what amount of coins released and what procedure?
I think the Skycoin price has been doubling every 40 days, for as long as I can remember. However, it will still be years before it is in the top 20, its still a long way to climb. It took bitcoin years to go from 0 to $1, even though it was growing at 1% per day the whole time for six years.
best would be a totally open source and publicly audited manufactured system on a chip for the nodes to prevent any backdoors.
we are going to use arm arc-over-water IOTA is also working on their own hardware for nodes etc, Trinary asset is JINN synth all intel and AMD systems have remote management engine backdoors. So they are not safe for storing large amounts of coins. We also have alpine linux and special version of linux, that is 6 MB and has everything that is needed for running our toolchain. It will not have any binary blobs in the kernel or anything that we cant compile from source. It does not have systemd and does not have gli, but uses musl. And does not have openssl. mike so looks like the Samsung Artik 5 and 10 can run it no problem, they're ARM based. 25x35x4mm package for the Artik 10, Artik 5 is smaller, less powerful but has 2 separate antenna ports, nice for mesh networking with an omni and a directional antenna. earlyarkinvestor how does Ark compare to Lisk? synth uploaded this image: 1923810435.jpg Add Comment earlyarkinvestor isn't Lisk trying to achieve interoperability between blockchains as well synth uploaded this image: 1433594905.jpg Add Comment synth uploaded this image: 1432540863.jpg Add Comment synth uploaded this image: 2049465686.jpg Add Comment mike nice! looks like an ARM based server rack let me know if you need any help with it, see you're on solidworks, which I run as well. synth this is the skycoin cluster; it has 8 CPU boards; 4 cores per CPU, 2 GB of ram per CPU and 64 bit ARM processor. Only one program will run on each individual board, so there is compartmentalization and a physical gap so that compromising one process on a system does no allow all other processes on the system to be compromised mike looks like 2 ethernet ports per board. synth and the hardware does not have the qualcom backdoors and is actually chinese equipment; and the backdoors are normally at the kernel level because they are not at hardware backdoors yet lol mike do they have SATA ports, maybe M.2 for storage? synth and we will hav an ARM openwrt router eventually too this model does not have SATA, but we have a model with SATA; you could hook up 16 2 TB drives, lol and download half the piratebay to your cluster (edited) the skycoin infrastructure is cluster based and designed for running across +300 computers, with one "node" deployed per computer. Eithe a CXO storage node, or a skywire SDN/meshnet node, or a VPN end point node or a consensus network, or skycoin node, etc. We have multiple node/application types. so this is a "personal cloud' by itself its not like StoreJ where you have other people storing your stuff; you are going to have ~5 clusters and 300 computers and can store your own files, on your own internet, on your own hardware. You do not need to go outside of your own network. mike Have thought it'd be nice to have a board with an array of M.2 sockets to run SSD arrays without all the cables, have the busses shielded in circuit board. synth yes, i think there will be m.2 eventually these actually use a microSSD for storage, and its 48MB/s mike any idea on the pricing on your ARM boards in quantity? We are looking at Intel for Bitseed V3, but ARM would be good to stay with, especially using your boards if there is SATA. arc-over-water Do you have a general idea of usable functions to be released next in what order? The first release was the Coin and wallet, then the ICOs and can you give a general future with dates if you can synth the boards are $30 each and the memory for solid state, is actually more than the the cost of the CPU/RAM/board now. Which is sort of insane. mike so you have microSSD, what's maximum size? we shipping 1with Tb hard drives right now synth Bitseed mike is going to help with this; so we can pool the boards and do a custom PCB mike yes, that's where we see the price jumps, is in RAM and eMMC costs. and it's hard to find low cost boards with SATA synth try the orange pi the price goes up 30% for SATA mike yes, very nice specs. synth eventually, we will make one that has custom PCB and is a pluggable blade server, I think. mike I like the Samsung Artiks for the tiny form factor for drone routers, cubesat/picosat possibilities. but like the fact that you are controlling much deeper down the supply chain with your boards. synth we only need ram, CPU, then microSD slot; and that is it. so the wifi and all this other stuff is just crap and its junk. We only have communication, storage and computation. So should be minimialist.
First and foremost the most important things for a platform are stability, speed, and security. To do those well you need the ability to push updates and fixes as close to real-time as possible. And it needs to work in every language. User authentication, data and caching abstraction.
A lot of what people think of as platform stuff is actually at the CMS layer -- custom post types, taxonomy meta,
If backwards compatibility wasn't a concern I would rename all the inconsistent column names and variables to match our style guide, drop TinyMCE, simplify the user roles and capabilities system, replace widgets with page blocks, redo the admin menu system, denormalize the DB, flatten dependencies and deep hierarchy in function execution, and completely reorganize the code so the bare minimum of files are included with any given request.
They say or imply lots of things about WordPress that aren't true. They've also done things like had a quote from me looking like I was endorsing Ghost on their Kickstarter page even after I asked them to remove it several times. (Lots of people were confused or thought it was a plugin for WP.)
Some cool stuff in there! I also keep an eye on Joomla and Concrete5. I find it really fascinating to watch other open source projects especially because we share much of the same background and philosophy, but make radically different decisions around things like backward compatibility and release schedule.
It's like watching birds that evolved from the same ancestor but on isolated islands and environments. I'm sure we do things that look completely crazy to Drupal folks, and vice versa.
Along those lines I was asked to keynote at the Joomla World Conference in November and it looks like I'm going to be able to make it.
Hello Dolly is actually the 13th most active plugin, with an active userbase of about 16% of Akismet (the most-activated plugin), and about a third as popular as Jetpack. It's ahead of W3 Total Cache! Again this is not just installations, it's currently active.
I'm as involved in WordPress development as I was 10 years ago, it just manifests itself in ways that tend to be a lot more behind the scenes and less visible, which I don't mind as I'm way more interested in things moving forward and the results than credit or recognition for any specific thing. (I get plenty of recognition regardless, don't need more.) The only downside is that folks who I don't work with on a day-to-day basis assume that my role at Automattic or WP is more as a traveling figurehead or "evangelist" which can rub me the wrong way sometimes.
The most important thing I've done since WP started, though, isn't in a line of code or a feature people use, it's getting the right people involved and creating an environment for them to thrive. It's the single most important thing any founder can do, whether of an OS project, a non-profit, or a for-profit company even though there's not a single thing you can point to as the result of it other than the overall success and movement of the project.
Oh by far and away the strangest location was Davao in the Philippines. I can't find any pictures at the moment, but my talk was essentially at a restaurant with a swimming pool courtyard -- the audience was on the other side of the pool from me, and the food buffet was behind me so when the Q&A got slow people would grab food. The PA system had an echo because I think it was normally used for karaoke. And then the bats came out!
Best after-party is hard to pick, but I had a great time after WordCamp Las Vegas which aligned with my 25th birthday a few years ago.
There's always a struggle between doing new things or experiments under a new brand -- like VaultPress -- vs putting it under an existing brand. A lot of the things I've been thinking about we're going to put under the Jetpack brand, for example Jetpack Photon (CDN + dynamic image resizing and filtering) could be a standalone product, but decided to bundle it. So keep an eye on some big things coming to Jetpack, especially for Code Poets, people who use WordPress professionally.
That's a tough one... I'm going to say the volunteers on the support forums. There are 2M+ posts there, and it's easy to forget that a huge number of WP users end up in the forums and get help that allows them to use the software when they wouldn't otherwise be able to.
Those are all good, if I had to pick one it'd be getting the documentation going better on WordPress.org -- handbooks, function reference, training materials / syllabuses, and doing it all in every language and for every plugin/theme.
The hardest thing for me was taking responsibility for the lives and families of others, those first few hires especially. It's why I originally raised funding even though we had revenue already, and why since then we've always focused on making the business sustainable over decades, not just the next tech hype cycle.
By far and away it's the high attrition rate of new users. We look at posting a lot in that context but I think it's far more important to look at customization -- theme discovery and tweaking, widgets, menus.
The first few users were friends of mine who weren't into technology at all, so from the start we needed to make it work for regular people. As we grow it's mostly just a matter of reminding ourselves of that, sitting down with them to see how they use the software, and anticipating their needs.
Some of the largest and most important publishers in the world rely on WordPress. (Show them the showcase.) If WordPress was insecure we'd see it on the front page of nytimes.com, wired.com, and cnn.com. :)
I have. It's also funny because I think Gartner is about to come out with a "magic quadrant" that puts us in the crappy quadrant (low vision and ability to execute). Their leaders? Adobe, Sitecore, SDL, Oracle, HP, Opentext...
I completely agree with Chris on all the ways that enterprise currently works, and their concerns. (People assume because we choose to do things differently that we don't understand the other side.) But I'm not willing to compromise getting better software into the hands of users as quickly as possible, if that means Gartner thinks we're a visionless niche player so be it.
We've done long-term support branches before, it was a big development burden and almost no one used it or cared. There will be businesses that embrace keeping their technology moving at the speed the web does, and there will be those that go out of business and become irrelevant.
Not true, still typing Dvorak, though last year I was beat on speed for the first time by Helen Hou-Sandi, who types QWERTY. She's speedy, and if she switched to Dvorak she could probably win world champs. :)
I'm glad that new ones are being started as fast as old ones are shutting down. There is some really interesting stuff going on in the community and I think there's space for real journalism and strong commentary.
I disagree with the premise -- WordPress does use modern coding practices. People assume that supporting say an older version of PHP or MySQL holds us back far, far more than it actually causes any trouble. Supporting older browsers is a way bigger deal.
Our biggest challenge is figuring out the user side of things, the front-end code. How things should work for a user rather than how they should work for a computer.
I spend more time on Skype (text chat with colleagues) than I would care to admit. Between that and P2s ( Link to p2theme.com ) I can easily fill eight hours in a day. As the company has grown to over 180 people there is a huge amount of content and activity to keep up with.
It's hard to say because I don't really consider what I do work, the hours just melt away.
I find I'm most productive first thing in the morning when I wake up, usually around 7am but a bit later if it's a cloudy morning, and I generally run out of steam around 11:30pm that night.
Some days I'm traveling though I might only have 4-5 hours at a computer and can get a similar amount done.
I find I'm generally more creatively charged the following day if I'm able to unplug at night, which is one reason I like jazz festivals (I try to go to Montreal every year) because I can work during the day and check out shows at night.
But seriously, I think it's all about removing friction (every second loading and extraneous click) and becoming part of people's habits, which is one of the reason I spent a fair amount of time on triggers and habits at the State of the Word this year.
Not on features, we'll make anything new there free to everybody, but might have a paid tier for top 1% of users by bandwidth/usage. But probably a few years from that, plenty of bandwidth and CPU here in the meantime, and it's just getting cheaper and faster.
I think it's a great framework for anything content-driven. For things like messaging that don't map well to WP's data model, you can still do it just make some new tables, don't try to shoehorn it in the standard ones.
I think the things that make open source incredibly collaborative and ultimately eat the world can also make design and big shifts difficult. WordPress has made some major shifts over its decade of life and grew as a result, but those pivots are harder to do the more successful we are because sometimes it means doing the opposite of what we did to become successful in the first place.
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