Author Topic: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)  (Read 247665 times)

Offline BriGy86

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Re: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)
« Reply #120 on: April 12, 2013, 10:34:09 AM »
I've wondered this as well.  If your coins are stored on your computer and not in a central location, what happens when the software gets corrupt or the hard drive crashes.... and you haven't backed up your wallet?

Apparently this happens.

http://www.businessinsider.com/how-reformatting-a-hard-drive-cost-one-man-200000-2013-4

which leads me to another question.  The limit is 21,000,000, didn't this remove about 800 from that total pool>?

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Re: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)
« Reply #121 on: April 12, 2013, 10:40:54 AM »
Another problem is too many coins in too few of hands.  people that got in early have more power to start this cascade than others.  And I believe there were a bunch bitcoins mined even before it went public.  (Million+ in the hands of maybe 10 people.)  I'm still looking for hard facts on that though.


This is a very good point.

The origins of the Bitcoin are very murky and it's impossible to know who is holding them and how many they have.


I thought this was an interesting story though:


http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2013/04/11/as-big-investors-emerge-bitcoin-gets-ready-for-its-close-up/

Offline Prodigy

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Re: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)
« Reply #122 on: April 12, 2013, 12:01:33 PM »
I've wondered this as well.  If your coins are stored on your computer and not in a central location, what happens when the software gets corrupt or the hard drive crashes.... and you haven't backed up your wallet?

Apparently this happens.

http://www.businessinsider.com/how-reformatting-a-hard-drive-cost-one-man-200000-2013-4

which leads me to another question.  The limit is 21,000,000, didn't this remove about 800 from that total pool>?

It's designed to be inflationary up until the last coin is mined.  At that point, it is designed to be deflationary, yes. 

If you're not comfortable with the concepts of basic encryption and backups, keep your bitcoins on a trusted site.  coinbase.com is one I recommend, but there are many.  I never did get an answer to the question:  does MtGox store wallets for people, or are they exchange-only?



Offline FreeLancer

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Re: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)
« Reply #123 on: April 12, 2013, 12:53:35 PM »
I never did get an answer to the question:  does MtGox store wallets for people, or are they exchange-only?

Mt. Gox holds both bitcoin and fiat currency for you in your account, which isn't exactly like a wallet.  I don't keep much of either stored there between trades, just in case something takes them down permanently or freezes transfers in and out.  But I'm probably being overly paranoid, I think they're trustworthy.

I've tried a couple of different bitcoin wallets on my local machine, but have since moved to the online wallet at blockchain.info.  It's so much smoother and it integrates perfectly with their smartphone app.  The way I look at it, this currency is only usable when the net is up and running, so storing my wallet in the cloud (so long as I safeguard my passwords) vs locally probably doesn't make much difference.  I know there are guys out there putting their wallets on encrypted thumb drives or machines that never touch the cloud, etc., but I'm not that paranoid, yet.  Maybe if I had millions, but not now.

Offline FreeLancer

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Re: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)
« Reply #124 on: April 16, 2013, 02:06:16 AM »
If anyone's curious just how volatile the BTC trading is at Mt. Gox, check out the real-time trading action at this site:  http://bitcoin.clarkmoody.com/

Bring your Dramamine or scopolamine patch, it's a wild ride.

Offline Prodigy

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Re: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)
« Reply #125 on: April 16, 2013, 08:00:43 AM »
Mt. Gox holds both bitcoin and fiat currency for you in your account, which isn't exactly like a wallet.  I don't keep much of either stored there between trades, just in case something takes them down permanently or freezes transfers in and out.  But I'm probably being overly paranoid, I think they're trustworthy.

I've tried a couple of different bitcoin wallets on my local machine, but have since moved to the online wallet at blockchain.info.  It's so much smoother and it integrates perfectly with their smartphone app.  The way I look at it, this currency is only usable when the net is up and running, so storing my wallet in the cloud (so long as I safeguard my passwords) vs locally probably doesn't make much difference.  I know there are guys out there putting their wallets on encrypted thumb drives or machines that never touch the cloud, etc., but I'm not that paranoid, yet.  Maybe if I had millions, but not now.

I am also concerned about the possibility of the site getting shut down/transfers frozen, but my biggest concern is those sites being hacked.  My personal computer, while hopefully as secure as I can make it, isn't nearly as lucrative a target as any site that stores many peoples wallets.  Especially long term, if bitcoin becomes more and more popular, those sorts of attacks will become more common.  If a website is hacked and they get your credit card info, there are ways to protect yourself.  If they hack a website and get bitcoin wallets, your money is gone forever.

I don't plan to own that many bitcoins in the near future either, so it's probably not a big deal.  On the chance I do own a lot down the line, though, I figure it's good to practice now what I would be doing then.

Offline FreeLancer

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Re: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)
« Reply #126 on: April 16, 2013, 03:33:47 PM »
I am also concerned about the possibility of the site getting shut down/transfers frozen, but my biggest concern is those sites being hacked.  My personal computer, while hopefully as secure as I can make it, isn't nearly as lucrative a target as any site that stores many peoples wallets.  Especially long term, if bitcoin becomes more and more popular, those sorts of attacks will become more common.  If a website is hacked and they get your credit card info, there are ways to protect yourself.  If they hack a website and get bitcoin wallets, your money is gone forever.

I don't plan to own that many bitcoins in the near future either, so it's probably not a big deal.  On the chance I do own a lot down the line, though, I figure it's good to practice now what I would be doing then.

The blockchain.info site operates on the trust no one principle, they have no ability to spend the coins contained in any of their clients' wallets, so even if hackers gained control of the site they wouldn't be able to spend any coins, either.  If you forget your log on credentials, they can't help you, because they don't know what it is, they only know what the hash of those passwords looks like and have no ability to work backwards to determine the actual password.  The owner controls the keys and can import them into any other wallet client and gain immediate access to their coins, even if blockchain.info goes off line forever.  That's the beauty of the distributed bitcoin network.  Blockchain.info encourages their users to store encrypted versions of their keys, by whatever means necessary, for just that very possibility.  I believe it to be extremely safe, as well as convenient, and don't see it as a weak point in the system, unlike Mt. Gox.

Offline Prodigy

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Re: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)
« Reply #127 on: April 17, 2013, 05:06:30 PM »
The blockchain.info site operates on the trust no one principle, they have no ability to spend the coins contained in any of their clients' wallets, so even if hackers gained control of the site they wouldn't be able to spend any coins, either.  If you forget your log on credentials, they can't help you, because they don't know what it is, they only know what the hash of those passwords looks like and have no ability to work backwards to determine the actual password.  The owner controls the keys and can import them into any other wallet client and gain immediate access to their coins, even if blockchain.info goes off line forever.  That's the beauty of the distributed bitcoin network.  Blockchain.info encourages their users to store encrypted versions of their keys, by whatever means necessary, for just that very possibility.  I believe it to be extremely safe, as well as convenient, and don't see it as a weak point in the system, unlike Mt. Gox.

Very cool, thanks for the info!

Offline FreeLancer

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Re: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)
« Reply #128 on: May 04, 2013, 08:16:01 PM »
Here's an interesting Wired article from Dan Kaminisky, a noted security researcher.  Some interesting quotes:

Quote
A few years ago, I tried to break Bitcoin, and failed quite gloriously. The system and framework itself is preternaturally sound.

Quote
Of all the millions of dollars of purloined bitcoin that’s floating around out there, not one Satoshi of it has been spent. That’s because while most other stolen property becomes relatively indistinguishable from its legitimate brethren, everybody knows the identity of this particular stolen wealth, and can track it until the end of time.

Quote
Yes, bitcoin is like gold.....But bitcoin is arguably better than gold.  Gold doesn’t have a teleporter like bitcoin....

Quote
Governments probably can’t kill Bitcoin.

Offline FreeLancer

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Re: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)
« Reply #129 on: May 15, 2013, 10:01:07 PM »
Yesterday, Homeland Security served Dwolla with a "seizure warrant" for the account held by Mutum Sigillum, otherwise know as Mt. Gox, which is based in Tokyo and therefore out of US jurisdiction.  Dwolla is still operating and individual accounts are fully functional, but any pending transfers to Mt. Gox from account holder's bank accounts will get no further than Dwolla.  It will be interesting to see if any Mt. Gox account holders lose dollars in this mess.

The Mt. Gox USD/BTC prices over the last week or so have been weirdly stable, until this news broke, and then briefly dropped from $115 to $103, but is currently back up to $116. 

Other dollar portals into Mt. Gox exist (I only used Dwolla), but expect continued proxy attacks on the weak links in the bitcoin economy, especially those businesses who depend on the traditional banking systems.

I guess it speaks well of the underlying bitcoin architecture, that it appears to be resistant to direct attack, but there's no telling what lies on the road ahead, so don't invest anything you can't afford to lose forever.  I moved most of my remaining bitcoin off Mt. Gox, leaving just a few coin and dollars to mess around with, as I don't trust them to be able to stave off interference, government or otherwise, indefinitely.

Offline Prodigy

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Re: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)
« Reply #130 on: May 16, 2013, 07:58:47 AM »
Thanks for the update.  After reading that news I wasn't sure what to make of it, but I think it's about damn time I move my bitcoins off coinbase and onto my own local wallet.

Is this a fluke case because of a lack of certain filings by Dwolla, or is this something broader?

Offline FreeLancer

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Re: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)
« Reply #131 on: May 16, 2013, 09:46:44 AM »
It's no fluke, Homeland doesn't care about Dwolla, they specifically targeted Mt. Gox, which is currently the de facto central hub in the decentralized bitcoin economy.  Interestingly, trading prices weathered this attack with barely a hiccup, but if the US can coerce Japan to close them down, it could be a very different story.

Offline FreeLancer

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Re: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)
« Reply #132 on: June 25, 2013, 09:55:22 PM »
For those interested in getting an ongoing education on bitcoin, I've been impressed with the relatively new podcast on bitcoins, Let's Talk Bitcoin!  The three hosts come from various backgrounds in technology, journalism, and the libertarian movement.  I believe the female host is based in New Hampshire and a big supporter of the Free State Project. The twice weekly shows feature interviews with the movers and shakers in the emerging bitcoin economy and is well worth a listen.

BrotherJohnF, who is also a major silver booster, puts out regular shows at The Bitcoin Channel.  He's a bright guy who does an amazing amount of analysis, complete with real-time charts and graphs, and I always learn something new.

Offline Prodigy

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Re: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)
« Reply #133 on: September 11, 2013, 10:24:53 AM »
"Does bitcoin need a standardized three-character symbol? Only if it has a future as a tradeable instrument with a physical spot market and a robust derivatives market. I argue that bitcoin does indeed have such a future."

http://www.financialsense.com/contributors/jon-matonis/talk-ticker-symbols-how-far-bitcoin-has-come



Keep in mind the author is rather biased, but despite that it is an interesting article.

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Offline FreeLancer

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Re: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)
« Reply #135 on: October 04, 2013, 07:31:11 PM »
Well, Silk Road was shut down today and the alleged creator was arrested.

BTC price dived on the news but it didn't stay down for long. 

Offline FreeLancer

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Re: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)
« Reply #136 on: October 19, 2013, 12:03:34 PM »
BTC is back up, way up.  Mt. Gox hit $195 earlier today, and the Bitstamp exchange went to $172.

Offline Prodigy

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Re: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)
« Reply #137 on: October 21, 2013, 02:33:44 PM »
BTC is back up, way up.  Mt. Gox hit $195 earlier today, and the Bitstamp exchange went to $172.

Any general ideas on why?  I've been out of the loop on bitcoin related news, lately.  Ironic, considering I started listening to the Lets Talk Bitcoin podcast, but that's all older news at this point until I eventually catch up.

Offline FreeLancer

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Re: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)
« Reply #138 on: October 21, 2013, 07:00:02 PM »
It may be influenced by Baidu (chinese google) adopting it for online transactions. 

I suspect there may also be a new found faith in the security of the crypto-currency due to the fact that Ulbricht's 600,000 btc are not available to, or crackable by, the feds.  In the wake of the NSA leaks, the fact that his digital assets remain out of grasp of the government is kind of awesome.  Of course that faith could be shattered tomorrow and the price could plummet to single digits again.

Offline FreeLancer

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Re: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)
« Reply #139 on: October 23, 2013, 07:44:30 PM »
It's going parabolic again.  Hit a high of $231 today, that's up from $109 three weeks ago.


Offline Prodigy

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Re: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)
« Reply #140 on: October 24, 2013, 01:27:29 PM »
Which probably means another large correction at some point, too.  Hold onto your seats, the roller coaster has begin again!

Offline FreeLancer

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Re: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)
« Reply #141 on: October 24, 2013, 08:34:21 PM »
After selling on the way up, I kind of need a short-term dip.

Offline Cedar

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Re: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)
« Reply #142 on: November 07, 2013, 08:01:06 AM »
Bitcoin hits all-time high of $309. So far, Bitcoin has been a high-margin and high-risk investment. Since the currency hit $123 on October 3, it has risen to about $309, nearly 3-fold. 

http://rt.com/business/bitcoin-boom-silk-road-364/

I am curious though. Several people in here say they have Bitcoin.. accordingt to the article, users of the new ‘Silk Road’ buy and sell cannabis, cocaine, heroin, firearms, and possibly order assassinations." Anyone order an assassination lately? Seriously though, do you guys hang onto Bitcoin or are you buying anything?

Cedar

Offline FreeLancer

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Re: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)
« Reply #143 on: November 07, 2013, 09:42:24 AM »
I have 95% of my bitcoin stashed for the long-haul.  The rest I play-trade with at Mt. Gox, and have never purchased anything with them, although I'd like to trade a few for gold sometime.

Offline Alan Georges

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Re: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)
« Reply #144 on: November 07, 2013, 05:48:45 PM »
Big in-depth article about bitcoin in December's print issue of Reason.  Best intro I've seen.

Offline Prodigy

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Re: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)
« Reply #145 on: November 08, 2013, 02:41:28 PM »
Seriously though, do you guys hang onto Bitcoin or are you buying anything?

I bought mine partially as a long term investment, but mostly just to support the movement.  I'd be much better at supporting the movement if I actually spent them, but I haven't done that yet in a mixture of laziness and fear of the price drastically increasing (which is exactly what has happened) and having to spend way more cash to replace my spent bitcoins.  It's really dumb on my part, since in theory I could just spend $100 every time I buy more bitcoins, and could buy the same stuff with it.  I don't know why, but it just feels wrong to be buying less than 1 bitcoin, though.

There's a lot of psychological mumbo jumbo that revolves around bitcoin, and sadly it affects me too, apparently.

Offline FreeLancer

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Re: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)
« Reply #146 on: November 08, 2013, 05:54:27 PM »
This Bitcoin thing is weird territory for me and I'm not quite sure what to do with the new-found electronic wealth.  It's not easy to spend or exchange, and if the value keeps going up it doesn't make sense to spend it anyways, especially when I have cash that's losing buying power by the day.

Today's Mt. Gox price is 80 times what I paid for my cheapest coins 20 months ago, and over 10 times the average cost of the coins I "hold" (I have to remind myself that they're just numbers on a shared electronic ledger).  Almost 13% of our paper net-worth, which has taken 20 years to accrue through saving and investing, is now represented by BTC.  Crazy-ass windfalls like this just don't happen to boring, dollar-cost averaging, guys like me.

I think I've decided that I'm not going to risk putting any more dollars into it at this point.  Since I took out the dollars I invested when it hit $100 this spring, I tell myself that I can't actually "lose" anything.  But I'm not sure that's what I'll be feeling when my Alt-BTC account in Quicken zeros itself out after the whole scheme tanks, and I'm kicking myself for not converting my windfall into something "tangible."

Maybe this type of attitude is why Bitcoin will ultimately fail.....or succeed.....I don't know, I'm just hanging on for the ride.

Offline FreeLancer

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Re: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)
« Reply #147 on: November 18, 2013, 12:20:17 AM »
Gox hit $600 minutes ago. 

Seems that the Chinese are behind this spike, so who knows how high a country of over a billion, looking to skirt draconian government currency controls, can drive this thing.

This link shows a graphic representation of global BTC trade.

Offline Prodigy

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Re: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)
« Reply #148 on: November 18, 2013, 10:04:32 AM »
As always, the speculating investors are partly fueling this thing too, but the underlying value is still constantly going up even after big corrections.

At this point I'm torn between wanting to sell my original investments worth, and let the rest ride... or letting it all ride... or even buying a little more.  I'm 100% ok with losing all of my original investment, so I doubt I'll choose option 1.  I also need to research more about storing the keys myself, but I keep pushing that off until I get a linux OS working again back home.  I refuse to hold any bitcoins on a windows machine, no matter the setup.


Offline The New Mike

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Re: Bitcoin currency (merged topics)
« Reply #149 on: November 18, 2013, 10:48:06 AM »
What's so hard about setting up a working linux setup at home? Takes about an hour.  :)

Hell even the bitcoin QT wallet in most cases can be downloaded via a package manager.

I can't get any work done because I keep looking up for a second to check the price and gives me a heart attack every few minutes. So now i'm drinking calming tea hah.

This was actually the month where we were going to use a little of the savings we save each month and buy some. I bought 2, 3 weeks ago, had a bunch of shit with coinbase, ended up it going through, and I sold 1 at 450ish dollars which paid for both coins. (So i got a free bitcoin). But looking at these numbers, the volumes, the "fundamentals" etc etc etc etc etc etc, I'd like to buy but i can't. A fellow TSPer is trying to encourage me to use his Mtgox account to buy, but i'm not so sure. This price has to collapse at least a little bit. There is zero retraction on prices at all. If it dipped even JUST A LITTLE BIT, perhaps I'd be ok buying.