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PostPosted: Thu Mar 06, 2014 3:40 pm 
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The Dancing Cat
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What does the number of addresses have to do with it?

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 06, 2014 3:51 pm 
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Hopwin wrote:
What does the number of addresses have to do with it?

Presumably, as it gains more widespread adoption, its value will stabilize and be at lower risk to external forces tanking it (such as criminalization, etc).

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 06, 2014 9:09 pm 
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Kaffis Mark V wrote:
Hopwin wrote:
What does the number of addresses have to do with it?

Presumably, as it gains more widespread adoption, its value will stabilize and be at lower risk to external forces tanking it (such as criminalization, etc).


Also value is heavily correlated with network size with these sort of things.

If you think the trend of the graph I showed will remain the same, then the value will go up.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2014 11:28 am 
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 Post subject: Re: Bitcoin mining
PostPosted: Wed Mar 12, 2014 9:56 pm 
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I'm pretty ignorant on bitcoins, but why would any business deal in a monetary device that is being speculated on like a commodity? Seems pretty foolish to me. Sounds like a scheme for a few to get rich off lots of suckers.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 13, 2014 12:47 am 
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It reminds me a lot of other schemes where shills inflate the price of something well above its value, then the in crowd bails out while the suckers cry.

I see no true value in bit coins. They only have monetary value as long as people believe they have monetary value. If people collectively decide the fads over and there is no real value there it all dies.

Which is why I've asked Lex to diversify, sell off some of the ephemera and invest in something physical. Perhaps he will lose some of his imaginary money, then again, he'll have something left if (when) it all falls down. China made a half-hearted effort to kill it already. Eventually, it will go the way of the other imaginary commodities.

Of course, I can keep predicting the falling sky, and Lex can keep ignoring my advice. I'll try not to say I told you so if I turn out right.

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 Post subject: Re: Bitcoin mining
PostPosted: Thu Mar 13, 2014 3:52 am 
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The US Dollar only has monetary value as long as people believe it has monetary value. See how that works? I fully believe that a digital currency will be a major player in the future. Whether or not that will be BC is yet to be seen, there have been many predecessors but this is by far the best.

The system behind Bitcoin itself seems pretty foolproof. The only issues that have arisen security-wise are with third party brokers. They've been like banks with really great vaults but no guards on duty; eventually someone is going to break in.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 13, 2014 10:14 am 
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Sam wrote:
I'm pretty ignorant on bitcoins, but why would any business deal in a monetary device that is being speculated on like a commodity? Seems pretty foolish to me. Sounds like a scheme for a few to get rich off lots of suckers.


You could make the same arguments about gold.

In other news, Bitcoin surpasses Western Union in daily transaction volume.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 13, 2014 10:50 am 
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So more people transfer Bitcoins then send commissary cash to their incarcerated loved ones? :lol:

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 13, 2014 10:52 am 
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The difference is that Bit Coins are not backed by anything. Most currency is backed by, we'll, nothing anymore. The full faith and credit of a bankrupt nation isn't really very confidence making.

My point is that if a national currency fails there are serious consequences and the nation and its allies will work like hell to make it not happen. If BC fails, there is no higher authority to maneuver to keep it from happening.

Actually, China is trying to kill BC as a means of controlling currency. Why?

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 13, 2014 10:57 am 
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China's not the only one trying to kill Bitcoin. A few other nations are getting nervous about its role in the darknet, and are discussing/contemplating going after currency exchanges to undermine it and isolate it.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 13, 2014 5:45 pm 
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Not only countries, but banks are not being cooperative. Traditional banks probably stand to be the biggest losers if all-electronic currency becomes more commonplace.

I'm not sure how you can (legally) turn bitcoins into actual dollars (or other currencies) without banks being involved, and most won't play.

Take a quick look at the Mt. Gox wiki page.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mt_Gox

Some highlights
wikipedia.org wrote:
Domain name
In late 2006, programmer Jed McCaleb (eDonkey2000, Overnet, Ripple) thought of building a website for users of the Magic: The Gathering Online service to let them trade cards like stocks;[6] in January 2007, he purchased the domain name mtgox.com, short for "'Magic The Gathering Online' eXchange"; initially in beta, sometime around late 2007, the service went live for around 3 months before McCaleb moved on to other projects, having decided it was not worth his time. He reused the domain name in 2009 to advertise his card game The Far Wilds.

Trading incidents
On 19 June 2011, a security breach of the Mt. Gox bitcoin exchange caused the nominal price of a bitcoin to fraudulently drop to one cent on the Mt. Gox exchange, after a hacker allegedly used credentials from a Mt. Gox auditor's compromised computer illegally to transfer a large number of bitcoins to himself. He used the exchange's software to sell them all nominally, creating a massive "ask" order at any price. Within minutes the price corrected to its correct user-traded value. Accounts with the equivalent of more than $8,750,000 were affected.

On 22 February 2013, following an introduction of new anti-money laundering requirements by Dwolla, some Dwolla accounts became temporarily restricted. As a result, transactions from Mt. Gox to those accounts were cancelled by Dwolla. The funds never made it back to Mt. Gox accounts. Mt. Gox help desk issued the following comment: "Please be advised that you are actually not allowed to cancel any withdrawals received from Mt. Gox as we have never had this case before and we are working with Dwolla to locate your returned funds." The funds were finally returned on May 3, more than 3 months later, with a note "Please be advised never to cancel any Dwolla withdrawals from us again".

In March 2013, the bitcoin transaction log or "blockchain" temporarily forked into two independent logs with differing rules on how transactions could be accepted. The Mt. Gox bitcoin exchange briefly halted bitcoin deposits. Bitcoin prices briefly dipped by 23% to $37 as the event occurred before recovering to their previous level in the following hours, a price of approximately $48.

Suspension of trading
Mt. Gox suspended trading on 11 April 2013 until 12 April 2013 2 am UTC for a "market cooldown".[22] The value of a single bitcoin fell to a low of $55.59 after the resumption of trading before stabilizing above $100.

Mt. Gox suspended withdrawals in US dollars on June 20, 2013. On July 4, 2013, Mt. Gox announced that it had "fully resumed" withdrawals, but as of September 5, 2013, few US dollar withdrawals had been successfully completed.

On August 5, 2013, Mt. Gox announced that they have incurred "significant losses" due to crediting deposits which had not fully cleared. Mt. Gox announced that new deposits would no longer be credited until the funds transfer to Mt. Gox is fully completed.

Legal issues
On 2 May 2013 CoinLab filed a $75 million lawsuit against Mt. Gox alleging a breach of contract.[28] The companies announced a partnership in February 2013 under which CoinLab would handle all of Mt. Gox's North American services.[28] CoinLab's lawsuit contends that Mt. Gox failed to allow them to move existing U.S. and Canadian customers from Mt. Gox to CoinLab.

On 15 May 2013 the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) issued a warrant to seize money from Mt. Gox's US subsidiary's account with payment processor Dwolla. The warrant suggests the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), an investigative branch of the DHS, felt the subsidiary, which should have been licensed by the US Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), was operating as an unregistered money transmitter in the United States.

On 29 June 2013, Mt. Gox received its money services business (MSB) license from FinCEN.

Withdrawals delayed or refused
Wired Magazine reported in November 2013 that customers were experiencing delays of weeks to months in withdrawing funds from their accounts. The article said that the company had “effectively been frozen out of the U.S. banking system because of its regulatory problems”. Customer complaints about long delays were mounting as of February 2014, with more than 3300 posts in a thread about the topic on the Bitcoin Talk online forum.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 13, 2014 6:13 pm 
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Here is the 'bad' stuff from the 'Bitcoin' wiki page

wikipedia.org wrote:
Criminal activity
Bitcoins have become linked to online criminal behavior and so-called cybercriminals. Used to obfuscate online transactions, bitcoins are seized when dark web black markets are shut by authorities. The association with criminal activities has stigmatized the currency and attracted the attention of financial regulators, legislative bodies, and law enforcement. CNN has referred to bitcoin as a "shady online currency [that is] starting to gain legitimacy in certain parts of the world," and the Washington Post calls it "the currency of choice for seedy online activities." The FBI stated in a 2012 report that "bitcoin will likely continue to attract cyber-criminals who view it as a means to move or steal funds".

Criminal activity involving Bitcoin has largely centered around theft of the currency, money laundering, the use of botnets for mining, and the use of bitcoins in exchange for illegal items or services. Certain nation states may feel that its use in circumventing capital controls is also undesirable. Despite claims made by the non-profit Bitcoin Foundation that "cryptography is the reason no one can steal bitcoins," theft is widespread.
Black markets.

Several news outlets assert that the popularity of bitcoin hinges on the ability to use them to purchase illegal goods. C. 2013 Non-drug transactions were thought to be far less than the number involved in the purchase of drugs, and roughly one half of all transactions made using Bitcoin were bets placed at a single online gaming website. Some also state that online gun dealers use Bitcoin to sell arms without background checks. In 2012, an academic from the Carnegie Mellon CyLab and the Information Networking Institute estimated that 4.5 to 9% of all bitcoins transacted were for purchases of drugs at a single online market, Silk Road.[133] As the majority of the Bitcoin transactions were then speculative, the academic asserts that drugs constituted a much larger percentage of the purchases with the currency.[133] Silk Road was later shut by US law enforcement. Some feel dark web black markets are operated in order to steal bitcoins from shoppers. The Bitcoin community branded one site, Sheep Marketplace, as a scam when it prevented withdrawals and shut down after an alleged bitcoins theft. In a separate case, escrow accounts with bitcoins belonging to patrons of a different black market were hacked in early 2014.

Money laundering
While some feel bitcoins are not ideal for money laundering because all transactions are public, authorities have expressed concerns. The European Banking Authority and the FBI have both stated that Bitcoin may be used for money laundering. In early 2014, an operator of a US bitcoin exchange was arrested for money laundering.

Ponzi scheme
Critics have accused Bitcoin of being a Ponzi scheme, though Bitcoin supporters disagree A 2012 case study report by the European Central Bank noted that Bitcoin shares some, but not all, characteristics of Ponzi schemes and concluded that "it [is not] easy to assess whether or not the Bitcoin system actually works like a pyramid or Ponzi scheme."

In an alleged Ponzi scheme that utilized bitcoins, The Bitcoin Savings and Trust promised investors up to 7 percent weekly interest, and raised at least 700,000 bitcoins from 2011 to 2012. In 2013, the SEC charged the company and its founder "with defrauding investors in a Ponzi scheme involving Bitcoin..."

Thefts
While generating and storing keys offline mitigates theft of bitcoins, thefts occur on a regular basis. Theft occurs when an unauthorized transfer of bitcoins is made from a wallet using the private key to unlock the wallet. Most large-scale thefts occur at payment processors, exchanges, or online wallet services that store the private keys of many bitcoin users: The thief hacks an online wallet service by finding a bug in its website or spreading malware to computers holding the private keys. When they have control of the website or its database, they gain access to many users' private keys and can thereby steal those users' bitcoins.

Many high-profile bitcoin thefts have been reported: In late November 2013, an estimated 96,000 bitcoins, then valued at around $100 million, were stolen from the online illicit goods marketplace Sheep Marketplace, which immediately closed. Users tracked the coins as they were processed by the bitcoin exchange BTC-e, where they were apparently converted to cash, but no funds were recovered or culprits identified. A black market called Silk Road 2, stated that during a February 2014 hack bitcoins valued at $2.7 million were taken from escrow accounts. On February 28, 2014 Mt. Gox, one of the world's biggest virtual currency exchanges filed for bankruptcy in Tokyo after its computer system was hacked and lost 850,000 bitcoins (750,000 of customer bitcoins and 100,000 of Mt. Gox own bitcoins) worth approximately $477 million at the time, representing around 7 percent of the world's supply.

Flexcoin, an Alberta, Canada-based bitcoin storage specialist, shut down on March 3, 2014 after it said it discovered the theft of 896 bitcoins, worth roughly $650,000. The theft exploited a software flaw handling multiple, rapid inter-account transfers. The company differentiated itself by incentivizing users to store bitcoins on their website. Only bitcoins stored in hot wallets (i.e., connected to the internet) were stolen, and the company said it would return customer bitcoins kept offline in cold storage, an optional service that was available for a 0.5% fee. Poloniex, a digital currency exchange, reported on March 4, 2014 that it lost 76.69 bitcoins to hackers, or 12.3% of its bitcoin holdings, valued at around $50,000. Multiple withdrawals were placed at nearly the same time in the attack, and the exchange did not adequately guard against negative balances. Poloniex said it would reduce customer account balances by 12.3%, and repay the deductions in the future.

Malware
Bitcoin-related malware includes software that steals bitcoins from users using a variety of techniques, software that uses infected computers to mine bitcoins, and different types of ransomware, which disable computers or prevent files from being accessed until some payment is made.
Unauthorized mining

In June 2011, Symantec warned about the possibility that botnets could mine covertly for bitcoins. Malware used the parallel processing capabilities of GPUs built into many modern video cards. In mid-August 2011, bitcoin mining botnets were detected again, and less than three months later, bitcoin mining trojans had infected Mac OS X. In April 2013, electronic sports organization E-Sports Entertainment was accused of hijacking 14,000 computers to mine bitcoins; the case was settled in November with a fine of $325,000 increasing to US$1 million if the organization were to break the law within the following ten years. While bitcoin mining on an average PC is no longer lucrative, botnet networks of tens of thousands of infected computers can mine for bitcoins without concern for power costs. German police arrested two people in December 2013 who customized existing botnet software to perform bitcoin mining, which police said had been used to mine at least $950,000 worth of bitcoins. For four days in December 2013 and January 2014, Yahoo's European servers served an ad that contained Windows bitcoin mining malware which infected an estimated 2 million PCs. Bitcoin-mining botnet software called Sefnit, first detected in mid-2013, was bundled with many software packages; Microsoft has been removing the malware through its Microsoft Security Essentials and other security software since January 2014.

Malware stealing bitcoins
Security company Dell SecureWorks said in February 2014 that they had identified 146 strains of bitcoin malware in circulation, almost all of it targeting Windows users, and about half of the malware undetected by standard antivirus scanners. The most common type searches computers for cryptocurrency wallets to upload to a remote server, where they can be cracked and their coins stolen. Many of these also log keystrokes to record passwords, often avoiding the need to crack the keys. A different approach taken by some malware is to detect when Bitcoin addresses are copied to a clipboard, and replace it with a different address, tricking people into sending bitcoins to the wrong address.

One virus, spread through the Pony botnet, was reported in February 2014 to have stolen up to $220,000 in cryptocurrencies, including 335 bitcoins, from 85 wallets. Security company Trustwave tracked the malware since September 2013, reporting that it had also stolen millions of passwords to various websites, and that its latest version was able to steal from 30 types of digital currency wallets.

A trojan horse for Mac OS X, called CoinThief, hidden in versions of some cryptocurrency apps on Download.com and MacUpdate, was reported in February 2014 to be responsible for multiple bitcoin thefts, including one user who lost 20 bitcoins. It bore similarities to a piece of Mac malware active in August 2013, Bitvanity, which posed as a vanity wallet address generator, and stole addresses and private keys from other Bitcoin client software.

Ransomware
Another type of Bitcoin-related malware is a type of ransomware. A program called Cryptolocker, typically spread through legitimate-looking email attachments, encrypts the hard drive of an infected computer, then displays a countdown timer and demands a ransom, usually two bitcoins, to decrypt it. Police in Massachusetts said they paid a 2 bitcoin ransom in November 2013, worth more than $1300 at the time, to decrypt one of their hard drives.Linkup, a combination ransomware and bitcoin mining program that surfaced in February 2014, disables a user's internet access and demands credit card information to restore it, while secretly mining bitcoins. Researchers at Emsisoft did not test whether entering the information really restored internet access.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2014 1:20 am 
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Lex Luthor wrote:
Sam wrote:
I'm pretty ignorant on bitcoins, but why would any business deal in a monetary device that is being speculated on like a commodity? Seems pretty foolish to me. Sounds like a scheme for a few to get rich off lots of suckers.


You could make the same arguments about gold.


I'd like to see that.


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 14, 2014 1:49 am 
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Bitcoin does resemble a commodity more than it does a currency.

I was playing swtor with some friends when the topic of Bitcoins came up. We laughingly came up with an analogy.

I would order a pizza online and have it delivered to my friends residence, and in trade, he could send me 1,000,000 swtor credits (we didn't actually do this :P )

Obviously bitcoin is a tad more complex than trading real things for virtual currency in a video game, but it's similar enough.

In fact, several of the bitcoin exchanges are converted RMT sites that previously specialized in video game currency. One of which, First Meta, based in Singapore, CEO committed suicide recently.


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 Post subject: Re: Bitcoin mining
PostPosted: Tue Mar 25, 2014 2:08 pm 
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The Internal Revenue Service has issued a formal notice saying it can tax Bitcoin transactions, calling it a property -- not a currency.

http://money.cnn.com/2014/03/25/technol ... l?iid=Lead

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 25, 2014 3:01 pm 
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I really like my Bitcoins, and I plan on keeping them as long as I can. Maybe it's not rational. Maybe they'll all get stolen. I can see why people make fun of them - even I did, at the beginning.

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PostPosted: Mon May 22, 2017 2:43 pm 
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How many did you have Lex?

If you bought $100 of bitcoin 7 years ago, you'd be sitting on $75 million now
http://www.cnbc.com/2017/05/22/bitcoin- ... -2100.html

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 Post subject: Re: Bitcoin mining
PostPosted: Wed Jul 12, 2017 8:01 am 
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Hopwin wrote:
How many did you have Lex?

If you bought $100 of bitcoin 7 years ago, you'd be sitting on $75 million now
http://www.cnbc.com/2017/05/22/bitcoin- ... -2100.html


*chuckle* I've been wondering the same thing. When I saw those headlines, I immediately recalled this discussion on the Glade and thought, "Damn, I wonder how many of my fellow Gladers are now multi-millionaires." Of course, my second thought was, "Damn, why the hell didn't I do that?!" And then my third thought was, "Damn, my brother is never going to forgive me for talking him out of getting into BitCoin a couple years ago too." And finally, "Damn, FML."


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 Post subject: Re: Bitcoin mining
PostPosted: Fri Aug 11, 2017 10:59 pm 
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RangerDave wrote:
Hopwin wrote:
How many did you have Lex?

If you bought $100 of bitcoin 7 years ago, you'd be sitting on $75 million now
http://www.cnbc.com/2017/05/22/bitcoin- ... -2100.html


*chuckle* I've been wondering the same thing. When I saw those headlines, I immediately recalled this discussion on the Glade and thought, "Damn, I wonder how many of my fellow Gladers are now multi-millionaires." Of course, my second thought was, "Damn, why the hell didn't I do that?!" And then my third thought was, "Damn, my brother is never going to forgive me for talking him out of getting into BitCoin a couple years ago too." And finally, "Damn, FML."


Yes. I really wish I'd listened to Lex ages and ages ago.

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 Post subject: Re: Bitcoin mining
PostPosted: Thu Aug 24, 2017 9:56 am 
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The tax man cometh

http://www.thedailybeast.com/irs-now-ha ... tax-cheats

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