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Someone is upset about the Taraji P. Henson-starring Proud Mary , which opened in theaters Friday. (Well, someone besides 72% of critics and 44% of audience members .) John Fogerty took to Twitter on Thursday night to complain about the title of his 1968 Creedence Clearwater Revival song being used for…
On this day nine years ago, quietly, bitcoin and its blockchain network were birthed with block zero, the Genesis Block. Without government permission or wealthy backers, it has generated a quarter trillion in value. In combination with the resultant industry it spawned, comprising thousands of alternatives, cryptocurrency is a seven hundred billion dollar market. Nearly a decade on its creator still remains unknown. More than half a million mined blocks later, enthusiasts can only imagine what is to come in bitcoin’s next nine years.
Pseudonymous Satoshi Nakamoto, perhaps one person, maybe a group, set loose a hinge of human history: the blockchain database and its resultant cryptographic currency, bitcoin. The first block, block zero, and its fifty bitcoin reward, now worth over 700,000 USD as of this writing, was locked, unable to be transacted, and for all time. Saturday, January 3, 2009 at 6:15pm, the Genesis Block also contained, smuggled in the code, text from the morning’s Times of London, a cultural timestamp and allusion to what bitcoin was meant to explicitly address: yet another taxpayer bailout of legacy banking screamed in a below-the-fold headline.
MAY 22, 2010 COMMENTER LASZLO CONFIRMS PURCHASE OF A PIZZA FOR 10,000 BITCOIN
The Great Recession metastasized from the world’s reserve currency, the United States, to all first world nations, and quickly. Shakey investment vehicles, largely in real estate financing with risks insured by governments, proved a moral hazard, taking down the Royal Bank of Scotland, Alliance & Leicester, Merrill Lynch, Lehman Brothers, Freddie and Fannie, among many others.
At least a few people appeared ready for something radical, something different, when it came to organizing one half of all transactions. Money, a main measure of wealth, had been nationalized, tethered to instruments of coercion, of force. The issue in the first decade of the 21st century was divorcing money and state, getting around governments and their incessant push to monitor and control and inflate.
JANUARY 28TH, 2011 WITH BLOCK 105,000 GENERATED JUST OVER A QUARTER OF ALL BITCOIN TO BE MINED ARE IN CIRCULATION
Bitcoin, or something like it, might just be an answer. Despite previous attempts at competing currencies to government money, there was always a central point of failure, a place in its distribution or creation where it became exposed, fragile. Gold, certainly not new, was easily confiscated. Digital cash companies had offices, a creator or head, and were intimidated out of existence. Still others were litigiously hammered by government minders, dragging proponents into court, threatening livelihoods with jail time.
Hard-coded in its origin and open source, bitcoin could be run by anyone. In fact the more people who ran its software, the better. The more nodes in existence, the less points at which the network could be shut down. Passing the mathematical bits back and forth, capping their generation at 21 million units, would become a snap, easy and deflationary. As far as anyone has been able to determine, all of this was done by one person until a little more than a year after creating and maintaining bitcoin, he vanished. By either laws of self-preservation or wanting to obey the logic bitcoin demanded, Satoshi Nakamoto’s disappearing act meant the last limit to anti-fragility was lifted. No one was in control.
Trillion in 2018
Without a patent, no incorporation to limit liability, no billionaire genius bankrolling the project, lacking a visionary CEO spouting words of wisdom, swanky marketing budgets were nonexistent, and exactly no government backing, bitcoin has amassed a quarter trillion in market capitalization. Combined with its spawn, the thousand-plus alternative coins and variations on bitcoin’s theme are approaching seven hundred billion dollars in value. It’s probably not out of the question to assume the trillion dollar mark will be met in 2018.
MAY 8TH, 2012 SATOSHI DICE RESPONSIBLE FOR OVER HALF OF ALL BLOCKCHAIN TRANSACTIONS
Often overlooked is the transfer of wealth. For sure, much of it could be chimera due to, ironically, the very same issue that gave it a reason to exist in the first place: easy government money sloshing about, distorting valuations. Putting that aside for the moment, consider what bitcoin could mean to millions who have just begun investing.
Previously, all real money had been made. Slobs and regular Joes could open a brokerage account, be fee’d to death, and hope for beating inflation, maybe. Onboarding rules. Taxes. Regulations. All of it combined to insulate Wall Street from competition by ordinary people with a little cash. Bitcoin changed that, potentially.
MARCH 23RD, 2013 BITCOIN MARKET CAPITALIZATION TOTALS ONE BILLION
Anyone could receive or earn or buy bitcoin. And the value of that token, coin, payment system would rise. And rise. Crashes? Sure. But its price resilience has ushered in a new era of wealth for a great number of people who never otherwise could have participated. Wall Street, legacy money, was initially kept out due to their regulatory burdens, their protecting of themselves, their arrogance and natural sheep-like behavior. For maybe the first time in recorded financial history, small money was ahead of big money.
The implications of block zero go much further than the above. More remains to be written and studied, obviously. But taking a minute to appreciate participation in an honest-to-goodness historical moment might allow enthusiasts, veterans and newbies alike, to appreciate being active participants.
At what point did you discover bitcoin? Tell us in the comment section below!
Images via Pixabay.
The post We’ve Come A Long Way – Bitcoin Block Zero Was Born Nine Years Ago Today appeared first on Bitcoin News.
Wow, tell us how you really feel USA Today . The newspaper absolutely unloaded on President Trump in an editorial Wednesday that is drawing attention for its scathing language. For instance: “A president who would all but call Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand a whore is not fit to clean the toilets in…
Despite numerous calls for him to do so, Rep. John Conyers won’t resign—but he is retiring, and it looks like he’s not waiting. “I’m in the process of putting my retirement plans together,” he told Detroit radio host Mildred Gaddis in a call from a hospital Tuesday, per the…
RSK Labs has announced that the main network of their Bitcoin-powered smart contract platform is launching in beta on Monday after more than two years of development. The company claims to have secured the support of 90 percent of Bitcoin’s hashing power for merge mining the RSK sidechain. All developers are encouraged to take part in a bug bounty program during this beta phase.
RSK Mainnet’s Beta Launch
Blockchain technology company RSK Labs announced on Monday the official beta launch of their open-source smart contract platform RSK, codenamed Bamboo.
The Ethereum competitor is a sidechain to the Bitcoin blockchain, offering a smart contract platform that uses bitcoin as well as offering layer-two scaling benefits. The company’s Chief Scientist, Sergio Lerner, commented:
We’re very excited to share the RSK mainnet source code with the community. It’s very important for us to get everyone’s feedback and peer review. The RSK project belongs to the whole ecosystem and we need to work together to build the Internet of Value over the Bitcoin Network.
Bamboo uses the RSK mainnet blockchain and network, unlike the previous RSK testing platform named Ginger. “The mainnet will be in beta for four months,” the company’s CEO and co-founder Diego Gutierrez Zaldivar said on the company’s telegram channel, noting that Bamboo will initially be using 21 RSK tokens, known as smart bitcoins, which they will distribute to testers during the 4-month period. “The peg will be limited during the beta phase and we’ll progressively lift all restrictions and leave it run into the wild,” he revealed, adding that the bitcoins will be spread between “Dapp developers and companies running solutions.”
90% Bitcoin Hashing Power Support
For the RSK sidechain to be secured, it must be mined alongside Bitcoin’s blockchain in a process called merge mining, which allows both blockchains to be mined at the same time.
According to the company, Bamboo “is currently secured by bitcoin miners representing more than 60% of the total Bitcoin hashing power,” who are already running the RSK merge mining plugins. Furthermore, another “30% of the Bitcoin network has already expressed their support to RSK and will start merge mining in the next couple of weeks,” the company claims, stating:
RSK allows bitcoin miners to increase their profits receiving fees from all smart contracts running on RSK with the same hardware, energy consumption and zero-efficiency loss in their so far primary business – the bitcoin mining.
Slush Pool founder Marek Palatinus commented on the launch of Bamboo: “This is a major milestone for RSK and the Bitcoin community as a whole. We’re very glad about the innovation and use cases that smart contract powered by Bitcoin could bring to the ecosystem.” He added:
We at Slush have completed the merge mining implementation to secure RSK smart contracts while providing a new revenue source to our miners.
Bug Bounty Program
To help ensure that none of Ethereum’s problems with insecure code occur with RSK, the company is focused on “performing new audits and security checkpoints,” even though the platform has already completed two external audit processes. A set of tools have been developed to monitor the network’s status and performance, as well as to offer network statistics.
With the launch of Bamboo, RSK is taking the additional security precaution of inviting developers worldwide “to peer review the source code and be part of the Bug Bounty Program.” The company added:
A Bug bounty program has been released to the global community of developers inviting every blockchain programmer as well as audit companies and partners to be part of it, providing feedback and helping to improve the technology.
What do you think RSK will do for Bitcoin? How will Ethereum be impacted? Let us know in the comments section below.
Images courtesy of Shutterstock and RSK.
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The post Bitcoin-Based Ethereum Smart Contract and Sidechain Rival RSK Launches Today appeared first on Bitcoin News.
Amid a flurry of sexual misconduct allegations , Rep. John Conyers’ office confirms that the 88-year-old has been hospitalized in Detroit, per WDIV . A political consultant who noted he spoke with Conyers’ wife, Monica, early Thursday said the Michigan congressman is being treated for stress-related issues. “We want you to know…
President Donald Trump’s nominee for Chair of the Federal Reserve, current Board Governor Jerome “Jay” Hayden Powell, participated in the constitutionally mandated US Senate confirmation process by way of a hearing on 28 November 2017. Bitcoin and “cryptocurrencies are something we monitor very carefully,” Mr. Powell answered in direct questioning about current and future Fed policy toward decentralized currencies.
Federal Reserve Under Oath about Bitcoin
Incredible valuations. Historic price rise. Mass adoption numbers. The Year of Bitcoin has achieved yet another official milestone: it is now a formal policy consideration by regulators of the world’s largest economy.
Tuesday afternoon in Washington, DC, Jay Powell sat before a sparsely attended, mostly pro-forma senate hearing. A current Fed governor nominated by President Obama to serve a 14 year term, Mr. Powell is widely considered to ease through to confirmation in the Republican-controlled upper body.
Georgia Senator, Republican David Alfred Perdue, Jr took asked the nominee a series of questions. Completely switching topics, he ended his line of thought with queries at the 1 hour and 35 minute mark about a subject sweeping professional finance circles: bitcoin.
Senator Perdue began, “We have another bubble that is some 4 to 5 times the size of the dot com bubble in the late 1990s, and that has to do with the cryptocurrencies like bitcoin,” he said.
Junior Georgia Senator Asks about Bitcoin
Mr. Perdue is junior senator from the Peach state, having been elected in 2014 to a six year office. His background include heading many businesses.
“Bitcoin’s market value now is bigger than all but 29 of the S&P 500 corporations in America,” he continued. “Assuming that this continues, and talking about that bubble, and the size and the growth of these cryptocurrencies, if that continues to grow … to what extent does that effect your ability to effect results from your typical monetary policy options that you typically have as a central bank?”
Nominee Powell answered, “You know, in the long, long run things cryptocurrencies of that nature could matter,” he said. When confirmed, Mr. Powell will be the 16th person to assume chairmanship of the Fed in its 103 year history.
“They don’t really matter today,” Mr. Powell said dismissively. “They’re just not big enough. They’re just not anywhere near close to enough in volume for it to matter for us.”
Senator Perdue then again made parallels between the 1990s dot com boom and bitcoin, implying Mr. Powell should see the same.
“There’s no question the valuations have gone up quite a lot in the last year or so. I don’t have a view on the appropriate level of the valuation, of course,” Mr. Powell explained.
The price of bitcoin, as of this writing, has reached 10,000 USD on global exchanges, skyrocketing hundreds of percent in eleven months.
“From our standpoint, cryptocurrencies are something we monitor very carefully. We actually look at blockchain as something that may have significant applications in the wholesale payments part of the economy,” Mr. Powell expanded in his answer.
“It’s something we pay close attention to,” the Board Governor noted.
The Senator from Georgia then asked if the Fed were watching technologies used around the world and in companies such as Alibaba with regard to blockchain and cryptocurrencies.
“We are watching all of those technologies. It’s something we have to do, I think. It’s actually something that is kind of enjoyable and interesting,” Mr. Powell smiled.
What do you think of incoming Fed Chair’s comments? Tell us in the comments below!
Images courtesy of: Pixabay, imagur, Wiki Commons.
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The post Trump’s Federal Reserve Nominee: Cryptos “Don’t Really Matter Today” appeared first on Bitcoin News.
Matt Lauer was able to get away with a lot at the “Today” show for decades… because the show made its own rules, and routinely ignored its bosses at the network. Sources connected to both “Today” and NBC tell TMZ, a number of NBC News…
Matt Lauer is gone from “Today,” but at least one of his old co-workers still has love for him. We got Hoda Kotb leaving NBC headquarters in NYC Wednesday after she went on the air to fill in for Matt, who was fired for alleged…
“Today” show co-host Matt Lauer has been fired from NBC due to inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace.