Bit Coins

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Post » Tue Apr 05, 2011 9:34 pm

Anyone read about these? I've been reading a lot, it's incredibly bizarre, but has some very compelling possibilities and implications. The entire system, quite frankly is pretty genius.

I wouldn't go investing a ton in it yet though, it's an extremely volatile currency, and it's unproven. A better currency, or a security flaw in it could wipe the bit coins value overnight. But nether less, it's a fascinating concept.
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Post » Tue Apr 05, 2011 9:43 pm

never heard of them. how do they work
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Post » Tue Apr 05, 2011 9:51 pm

Really hard to explain! Best read the bit coin website FAQ.

Basically it's a P2P currency. If I have 10 bitcoins in my account, I can enter your ID and send you 1 bit coin. It's verified somehow within the network.

They have real value, you can buy and sell them for real money and goods in some places. But the weird thing about them all is you can set your computer to generate them. It brute forces some arbitary hash or something, and if you are lucky you get awarded 50 bitcoins (~$40 at the moment).

The more people generating, the harder it is to win them. But, the harder it is to win them, the less profitable it is when you take computer running costs into account. So, the electricity cost of your machine generating coins is a natural market stabiliser.

It's really strange and a very very unique take on currency.
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Post » Tue Apr 05, 2011 10:31 pm

Never figured Skynet would be open sourced. :D
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Post » Tue Apr 05, 2011 10:36 pm

I don't know enough to make a fair assessment, but it sounds like you're taking money good almost anywhere and making it good in just a handful of places. That would change over time with expansion, but right now I really see no benefit.

I see what they claim are benefits, but they aren't to me anyways. When someone gives me a gift card to a store for whatever reason, I always look at them and say "So, you didn't want me to spend this on something else huh?" ;)
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Post » Tue Apr 05, 2011 10:42 pm

It's possible to exchange bit coins for USD though I think!

It's a really interesting concept, but it's very illiquid at the moment, but will be interesting to follow. I downloaded the bit coin generator, and I can do 10000khash/s (6 core 3.4ghz), which means on average I will make about $30 a year at current rates. I don't see why people are doing it, seems very unprofitable from electricity costs... Interesting though.
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Post » Tue Apr 05, 2011 11:08 pm

[quote="Tom":3bl0107k]It's possible to exchange bit coins for USD though I think![/quote:3bl0107k]
I'll take bitcoins.. USD seems to be on the verge on death.

I like the whole concept of bitcoins as well...

strange how the internet is forming into such a powerful antiestablishment force. wikileaks, Anonymous, and now this. A while back thepiratebay was providing a completely anonymous outlet for people in destabilized arab countries to communicate without fear of the government...uh...executions. MIT's opencourseware as well. I know these are mostly unrelated things, but I can see a similar thread running through it all.

soon there will be an opensource government taking paypal and bitcoin donations as we all vote for a plot of land to form our utopian society...no trolls allowed.
seriously though. I really like where things are headed with the worldwideweb, and the what it can mean for society. This amazing force for truth, good, and humanity. Already, the communication that goes on in noncrap forums sometimes amazes me. Conversations I never thought I'd see going on, it's amazing. Even the stupidity that goes on becomes commonplace enough that the general consensus of the world as to what is and isn't acceptable behavior is becoming sort of an open-morality and open-etiquette type filter.

Anyway. I've got more work to do, but not to derail the thread, but does anyone else see or have any thoughts on the direction the global online community is or isn't going, and what it can mean to the sociopolitical structure in say the next hundred to two hundred years?
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Post » Tue Apr 05, 2011 11:20 pm

Great post Lucid

I think making socio-political predictions on any medium is hard enough, but to make it on the next 1 or 2 centuries is even harder, and then to make predictions on an immature and extremely fast moving technology is even harder!

It's fascinating though, I like how the web really seems to be furthering openness and true democracy as well. It's definitely and interesting time to live in, and the web is probably going to be looked back on in history as the defining and most important event of our age.
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Post » Wed Apr 06, 2011 5:58 pm

[quote="Tom":39oec51x]It's definitely and interesting time to live in, and the web is probably going to be looked back on in history as the defining and most important event of our age.[/quote:39oec51x]
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Post » Wed Apr 06, 2011 9:17 pm

Do they explain what type of hashes you are brute forcing? For all we know it's the security codes of some very important companies. If it was something like running Folding@Home, that would be cool to be paid for it, but I wouldn't want to be the one responsible for helping crack a nuclear launch code or something :?
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