debate Archives -
This week Andrew Stone, the lead developer of Bitcoin Unlimited (BU), published a 42-page paper that details the evolution of the original OP_Group proposal. Now simply called ‘Group,’ the proposal involves a single OP_Code that could be added to the Bitcoin Cash (BCH) network’s scripting language in order to effectively create colored coins. However, unlike other representative token protocols like Omni or Counterparty, if the Group protocol was used it would require a protocol change, and miners would validate colored coins within the confirmation of normal transactions.
Bitcoin Unlimited’s Andrew Stone Publishes the Evolution of the Group Proposal
Earlier this week, news.Bitcoin.com reported on the upcoming Bitcoin Cash (BCH) network upgrade that will take place in November. The Bitcoin ABC development team revealed a timeline of certain goals like building and polishing the 0.18 ABC software and launching the client by October 15. However, the developers didn’t detail exactly what will be included in the next upgrade.
A few days later, Bitcoin Unlimited’s Andrew Stone published the evolution of the OP_Group proposal which is an implementation that could effectively add a plethora of features like representative tokens. Although, the Group proposal does not have broad consensus just yet as other developers have alternative ideas for colored coin creation and some think the OP_Group may be risky.
Group Could Extend the BCH Script Language to Allow a Plethora of Features
Bitcoin Unlimited’s lead developer Andrew Stone believes the community should listen and participate in the colored coin discussion. Alongside publishing the 42-page document, Stone has also left a video of the discussion that features the BCH ‘Token Work Group.’ The group consists of developers such as BU’s Stone, and Andrea Suisani, Bitcoin.com’s Emil Oldenburg, Bitcoin ABC’s Amaury Sechet, Shammah Chancellor, Jason Cox, Nchain’s Steve Shadders, Daniel Connolly, and the Electron Cash developer Jonald Fyookball.
“This is the evolution of the original OP_Group proposal — It’s no longer an opcode, so name change,” Stone explains. “The document is a bit long but that’s because it lays out a roadmap to extending the BCH script language to allow some pretty awesome features but at the same time preserving bitcoin script’s efficiency. For example, in the end, I show how you could create a bet with OP_Datasigverify, and then tokenize the outcome of that bet to create a prediction market.”
I strongly urge people to listen carefully to this discussion, even if you are not that interested in tokens, as it shows pretty clear philosophical differences that will likely influence BCH development for years to come.
Some Proponents Disagree With OP_Group and They Believe Tokenization Can Happen Without Making BCH Consensus Changes
Basically, Bitcoin Cash proponents who disagree with Stone’s Group proposal favor tokenization ideas that don’t require a change to the BCH codebase. Further, some people believe it would be safer to use protocols that work outside the main chain and operate like a sidechain or something similar. Another idea being discussed is ‘Tokeda,’ a token-driven metadata proposal written by Joannes Vermorel. The 31-page Tokeda proposal is also an early draft last updated, March 30, 2018, that is incomplete, explains Vermorel.
“Tokeda addresses both the challenge of viably preserving an unbounded amount of metadata without endangering Bitcoin itself and the challenge of introducing tokens within Bitcoin by weaving the two problems through aligned economic incentives,” explains Vermorel’s paper.
Tokeda is compatible with stateless wallets (which include SPV wallets) and requires no consensus change. As a token scheme, Tokeda relies on a trust-but-verify security model centered around the issuer.
Vermorel believes the BCH community needs to learn from the scaling issues the Ethereum network faces by making tokenization simpler.
“Since, it is now clear that tokenization does not require a change of the base protocol, it’s up to the market to deliver solutions, based on Tokeda, or anything deemed superior,” Vermorel details. “If there is one lesson to be learned from ETH it’s violating the locality principle in your design kills the scalability.”
A Matter of Opinion and the Benefits of a Universal Method that Creates Permissionless Tokens
Many others have stated their opinions concerning Stone’s Group proposal and Vermorel’s Tokeda. Following Stone’s published paper, Jonald Fyookball revealed some of his subjective valuations in a paper called ‘Thoughts on Tokens for BCH.’
“Whether or not we should change the BCH protocol to add GROUP is a risk/reward question and a matter of opinion,” Fyookball states. “Part of what made ERC20 so successful is how easy it is for anyone to create and issue a token, and for the ecosystem to support it. The BCH protocol already allows colored coins but no one uses it because the ecosystem doesn’t support it.”
In any case, I believe BCH would greatly benefit from a universal method for doing SPV-friendly, permissionless tokens.
What do you think about the Group proposal described by BU’s Andrew Stone? What do you think about other ideas like Joannes Vermorel’s Tokeda? Let us know your thoughts on this subject in the comment section below.
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An EU summit long planned to focus on the bloc’s patchy asylum policies has assumed unexpected urgency.
WSJ.com: What’s News Europe
“Bitcoin, or a similar form of cryptocurrency, will eventually replace governments’ fiat money as the preferred medium of exchange” was the resolution for a rollicking debate between Shapeshift CEO Erik Voorhees (affirmative) and Euro Pacific Capital Inc CEO Peter Schiff, prominent cryptocurrency skeptic (negative). In a victory for the crypto community at large, Mr. Voorhees was judged the winner by audience vote, moving 15% of the assembled crowd to support the resolution; Mr. Schiff managed to actually lose his base support by the end of the night, having been thoroughly beaten. The winner earned bragging rights and the traditional Tootsie Roll.
Erik Voorhees Vanquishes Peter Schiff at Sold Out New York Bitcoin Debate
New York City’s gritty, famed Bowery district is home to the recently reconfigured Soho Forum. Functioning as a debate society, it is hosted by the affable and nebbish Gene Epstein, economics editor of Barron’s. The Soho Forum featured Bitcoin pioneer Erik Voorhees and well known conservative/libertarian-ish economic media personality Peter Schiff.
The sold out, standing-room only audience at the Subculture Theater was treated to a good old donnybrook, a philosophical fisticuffs, lasting a full hour and a half (including audience questions). Sans necktie, wearing a light-colored suit, Mr. Voorhees argued in favor of the resolution, defending the idea of crypto finally usurping fiat hegemony. Mr. Schiff, in a muted royal blue suit with yellow tie, met his challenger to express intense incredulity that magic internet money beans could be anything more than a faddish bubble.
After brief introductions by Mr. Epstein, Lincoln-Douglas format demands the affirmative position make its case. Mr. Voorhees appealed the crowd’s natural bias immediately by reminding them of his infamous tangles regarding the state’s odious Bitlicense affair. He cheekily asked a future Forum debate be held on which is now more socialist, China or New York. He also paid homage to his night’s sparring partner, Mr. Schiff, in that the bearded gold bug’s podcast, as far back as 2008, was an influential factor in Mr. Voorhees’ embracing of free markets.
Mr. Voorhees argued four main points: why bitcoin is good money, why fiat is bad money, why gold is insufficient, and lastly why bitcoin will win. Most of the arguments, it might be fair to say, veterans in the space have heard. Bitcoin’s being provably scarce, its immutability, its near infinite divisibility, its durability with regard to the vast network of computing power, worldwide, at its disposal. Anticipating Mr. Schiff’s reliably arguing in favor of gold, Mr. Voorhees was keen to contrast bitcoin’s many advantages over the ancient metal, including debasement and counterfeit issues (bitcoin can’t be filled with tungsten, for example).
Peter Schiff’s Valiant Effort Falls Very Flat
Peter Schiff came to prominence during the 2008 Great Recession, having ‘predicted’ – his word – the real estate bubble and subsequent crash (he claims same of the dot com shake out). His viral videos of braving Occupy Wall Street urchins, toe to toe, made for compelling viewing. Tonight, however, he was the Mr. Schiff who just cannot see his way to accepting crypto as anything near legitimate. The resolution somewhat pigeon-holed him as essentially arguing in favor of fiat, but, of course, everyone who knows knows Mr. Schiff is hardly a fan.
Mr. Schiff made the oft-stated claim few, it seems, were actually ‘in’ to cryptocurrencies for the tech or even their potential as mediums of exchange. They are, he stated flatly, taking a financial position out of pure greed. Its being a speculation play was an enormous strike against it. And, even still, if folks wanted to use the decentralized money, they were hard pressed. Furthermore it’s not even a store of value, having slid some 60 percent since the end of last year, and its present volatility isn’t any better, he ventured.
He acknowledged how the “fiat system that we have now is not going to work, but replacing fiat currency with a digital fiat currency is not an improvement” either. Gold was the case Mr. Schiff came to make, his reliable go-to in every debate. The mere fact of gold having been around for centuries was proof enough bitcoin is no match. He asked rhetorically, “What are the odds that bitcoin’s the best cryptocurrency that’s ever going to be invented?” Gold, he maintained, has never been improved upon.
In the end, the men settled on some agreement: governments can outlaw bitcoin, something gold has been able to function reasonably well under; bitcoin might very well not be the final crypto standing; most people find comfort in government-issued money. Mr. Voorhees’ counter that bitcoin’s utility in areas of remittances, cross-border nature, being deflationary and censorship resistant carried the day. Audience polling prior to the debate had Mr. Voorhees’ and Mr. Schiff’s positions at 40% approval each. The debate formally terminated when it was announced Mr. Voorhees gained a whopping 15% of the voting audience to his side (55%) while Mr. Schiff’s support plunged to just 31%. After, the victorious Mr. Voorhees and friend, and equally important ecosystem pioneer, Nic Cary, dined with Peter Schiff, and were able to fashion him with a first bitcoin transaction.
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Over the past few months, there has been an ongoing theoretical and ideological debate concerning the difference between mining nodes and non-mining nodes, and whether or not one set of nodes is more important than the other. The ongoing argument between BCH proponents and BTC supporters often leads to the node debate as to which group of nodes is stronger. The dispute has even led some BTC luminaries to state that users who don’t run a fully validating node are merely ‘second-class citizens’ in the land of cryptocurrency.
The Ongoing Debate Over the Importance of Non-Mining Nodes
Nodes. A lot of people from within the BTC and BCH camps are talking about cryptocurrency enthusiasts who swear by the importance of non-mining nodes and the discussion has leaked into other digital asset communities as well. Non-mining nodes are basically a complete record of the blockchain and some people also believe non-mining nodes enforce a cryptocurrency’s protocol rules, while others believe these groups are mere spectators.
Mining nodes are also considered nodes but they possess the ability to process blocks and mint new coins. Just today on the Reddit forum r/bitcoin, users argued about the fundamental difference between mining nodes and non-mining nodes. The debate showed the glaring difference of opinion between both sides of this argument.
“Nodes do play a very important part to the system — They enforce the rules. Each person who runs a node has a ruleset they wish to follow — If enough nodes all agree to these rules they come to a consensus,” explains one commenter on the Reddit post.
If a miner or a pool decides to break these rules of consensus within 100 blocks they will lose the mining reward. Nodes can also ban other nodes for not following the consensus too.
Nodes Do Nothing But Decide for Themselves Whether the Rules Are Observed
However, immediately after the person’s comment, another user disagreed with the statement.
“Can an ASICs mine or generate blocks without a node?” asked the user who disagrees that non-mining nodes actually enforce rules. “No! Can a non-mining-node generate blocks? No! Who writes the chain further, if not the mining nodes? Certainly not the non-mining node — Which power decides which blocks are valid? Which power builds the other valid blocks?” the commenter continues, asking:
The nodes do nothing but decide for themselves whether the rules are observed. If they are not met, they split off from the network and wait for valid blocks that will never come because there are no miners to generate the blocks. Or you have a mining node, then you try to generate the next valid block by yourself. Pool nodes are of course very important, but they have mining power behind them — Your raspberry pi doesn’t have any power at all.
‘Second-Class Bitcoin Citizens’
The conversation got interesting about a month ago when BTC developer Jameson Lopp tweeted a controversial statement about fully validating non-mining nodes.
“If you don’t run a fully validating node, you’re a second-class Bitcoin citizen. If you don’t hold your own private keys, you’re a third class Bitcoin citizen,” Lopp stated on March 31, 2018.
The tweet didn’t go over so well as it sparked a vitriolic debate about the perceived importance of non-mining nodes. One Twitter user responded to Lopp’s tweet, writing “Why bring the bs hierarchical social scale to Bitcoin? This has to be one of the most pretentious statements I’ve heard in the Bitcoin community.” But Lopp answered back by saying:
It’s not so much about social scale as it is about self-sovereignty.
Three Powerful Misconceptions That Bolster Non-Mining Node Nonsense
On April 29, 2018, on the We Are All Satoshi network hosted by the founder of the Pirate Party, Rick Falkvinge, the host debunked the concept that cryptocurrency investors who don’t run fully validating nodes are second class, and called the statement “nonsense.” In fact, Falkvinge explained that non-mining nodes are merely “direct spectators” who can only watch the rules, not enforce them. Falkvinge says nodes that are originally described in Satoshi Nakamoto’s white paper were “mining nodes.” The Pirate Party founder says that people who promote the belief that non-mining nodes are rule enforcers are being nonsensical and usually bolster “three powerful misconceptions — users without nodes are second class, nodes have network power, and nodes decentralize the network.
“Users without nodes are second-class citizens — No they are not, 99.999 percent of users will not be running nodes and in fact, that’s completely fine, and required for mass scale adoption,” Falkvinge explains in his video ‘Rick Reacts: The Nonsense about Bitcoin Nodes’ video. “Nodes have network power — No that’s nonsense they don’t. The network will proceed regardless of the presence or nonpresence of certain non-mining nodes — They have no influence whatsoever.”
Nodes decentralize the network — Well yes if your talking about Bangladesh goat farmers capable of renting a server, capable of gigabyte sized blocks, then you might get some decentralization. But this is used as a battering ram for hammering home the point somebody must be able to run a full node on a shitty Comcast connection — which is just atrocious — these three statements are all false narratives.
The non-mining node debate has become a very contentious conversation among cryptocurrency advocates and the argument is discussed regularly on forums and social media these days. The non-mining node discussion is now at the heart of the ongoing scaling debate that seems to never end.
What do you think about the debate regarding non-mining nodes? Do you think non-mining nodes are important? Let us know your thoughts on this subject in the comments below.
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The post Second Class Citizens or a False Narrative? The Non-Mining Node Debate Heats Up appeared first on Bitcoin News.
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On March 24, the mining operation Slush Pool announced it had mined a block using the controversial ASIC Boost protocol and did so using a Halong Miner. The news follows the pool revealing it was compatible with ASIC Boost which sparked up a heated debate just recently.
Slush Pool Mines Block 514882 Using ASIC Boost Technology and a Halong Miner
According to a recent announcement over Twitter form the mining operation Slush Pool they have mined a block using ASIC Boost technology. Further, the pool had stated they mined block 514882 using Halong Mining equipment. Halong Mining is also a contentious subject as a lot of skeptics believe the mining company and its devices are fabricated. However, Slush Pool says they got about “16 TH/s” of hashrate using the equipment created by the tendentious company.
“Our block 514882 is the first-ever block mined using the active version-rolling aka overt ASIC Boost,” explains Slush Pool.
According to the available evidence, it was mined by Halong Mining hardware. Congrats to the lucky miner from Guangdong, China.
Core Supporter’s Bitmain Hate Continues
After the announcement, the news went viral on social media platforms like Twitter and Reddit forums. Of course, bitcoin core supporters were pleased to hear the news and most seemed to forget about how controversial this technology was just a few months ago. Most of the proponents of core stated that they didn’t appreciate Bitmain using ASIC Boost because they may have been mining with it covertly. Ironically enough being covert no one can prove that anyone had used the protocol back then and it has never been proven that Bitmain used the technology. In many respects, core supporters were thrilled to see another operation be competitive towards Bitmain.
“Great to see competition in this space — Anything that hits Bitmain is a good news,” explains one core proponent.
However, one person confused by the comment writes:
Not sure what you mean — One of the reasons the anti-Bitmain sentiment grew so large was because of AsicBoost itself — Are you happy that there’s competition in the ASIC Boost space? Or just the mining space, even though the competitor is also implementing ASIC Boost?
The Community Now Waits to See if This Technology Affects the Mining Space
On the other side of the hand, bitcoin cash (BCH) supporters thought the excitement from core proponents was extremely contradictory from when most of them called ASIC Boost and “attack or an exploit.” A lot of hateful words and malice was directed at Bitmain during the time even a core supporter from Israel vandalized the Bitmain offices located in the region. One bitcoin cash supporter writes after Slush’s announcement, “ASIC Boost is good but not Jihan ASIC Boost.” Still, the argument is combated by the ‘covert’ part of the discussion, where many core supporters believe the technology is evil when used secretly. Moreover, fans of Slush using ASIC Boost also stated that covert ASIC Boost was incompatible with Segregated Witness (Segwit) which created another topical scaling discussion at the time. But again BCH proponents were very skeptical of the announcement and think the current actions are hypocritical.
No one quite knows exactly what the use of ASIC Boost will bring to the global arena of mining competition. ASIC Boost is a method of optimization that makes mining operations more efficient by 20-30 percent according to estimates.
What do you think about Slush mining the first ASIC Boost block on BTC mainnet? Do you think the action is hypocritical or do you think its ok to use the technology non-secretively? Let us know your thoughts on this subject in the comments below.
Images via Shutterstock, Pixabay, Bitmain, Halong Mining, and Slush Pool logos.
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For Russia-linked Twitter accounts and bots linked to Russian propaganda campaigns, last week’s horrific school shooting in Florida was just another opportunity to sow division among Americans, security researchers say. Within an hour of the shooting, hundreds of automated Twitter accounts with suspected Russian links began sending out tweets with…