Let's Discuss Bitcoin

lanky said:


Tom_Reingold said:
Digital money that doesn't go through banks will probably make sense in the future. But it's not currency now, because people are using it as an investment. Investing in it means people expect the value to change (go up). That makes it a very unworthy thing as a currency. A good currency is stable in value.
 Criminals are also using it quite successfully as a currency currently

 Yes, one group of people who "need" to acquire Bitcoin are those who want to buy something illegal, such as drugs or perhaps a murder.

They create a demand.  If people are holding their Bitcoin and not selling, then that reduces the supply.

The law of "supply and demand" means that the value of all Bitcoin goes up, as the demand has to be met by a hard-to-obtain supply.

If more people "need" Bitcoin for their purchase of drugs and/or murder, the value will go up.

Conclusion:  Bitcoin is a great investment in the illegal drugs and murder "futures market".

(Not that serious a point, just a thought.)


Imagine if any American could print U.S. dollars if they just had a enough computer power.  




This came to my attention today.

Who Invented Blockchain?

A popular answer, who might be familiar to Columbia High School parents: 

Dr. Scott Stornetta (for co-writing a seminal research paper in 1991).


Did he teach at CHS?


He was a math teacher at CHS — longtime, I believe — until this spring. I thought I had read that he left for a job in another district, but then there’s this:

Blockchain founding father joins Aussie investment firm First Digital Capital


I was a sub in his room at Columbia a few times (as an inclusion teacher).  Really, really really smart guy.  He seemed to be an excellent teacher and he was especially interested in underperforming students.  Thought it was a big loss to the school when he left.  Did not know anything about the blockchain writing.  Wow.  


Bitcoin is now worth less than a third of what it was at the peak last December.



...and yet still vastly over-valued.


Hey, remember when South Orange was going to start accepting Bitcoins? What was the name of that company? Oh right - coin.co


https://coin.co/


My brother bought in in December.  He is usually the bellwether.  I knew it would tank.  


I see a future episode of American Greed soon! I love that show! 


Shocker  . . . not!

https://money.cnn.com/2018/09/06/technology/bitcoin-prices-plunging-goldman-sachs/index.html

Bitcoin investors are getting their digital butts kicked lately. Hard. Bitcoin prices have plunged more than 20% in the past two days.

I'm still not grasping the Bitcoin fantasy.



As an investment maybe not so good but it IS the future of currency.


rhw said:
As an investment maybe not so good but it IS the future of currency.

The people running the (expensive) computers to verify all the transactions and add the next blocks onto the chain aren't doing it for charity.  They're doing it for the bits of bitcoin that are the reward.  And the promise of greater value (that is, as an investment) keeps them in the game.  If the value stabilizes so as to be a replacement currency, that "upside" is lost.  They may not stay in the game, and the bitcoin doesn't work without them.


I don't see how a currency can be an investment in and of itself. If the value varies with investment, then it's not a trustworthy currency.


https://www.yahoo.com/finance/news/cryptocurrency-theft-hits-nearly-1-billion-first-nine-121210845--sector.html

Theft of cryptocurrencies through hacking of exchanges and trading platforms soared to $927 million in the first nine months of the year, up nearly 250 percent from the level seen in 2017, according to a report from U.S.-based cyber security firm CipherTrace released on Wednesday.


Bitcoin was $19,000 last December - now it's $6,250.  

What a scam!  Imagine if everyone in South Orange paid their taxes via bitcoin?


Can someone explain blockchain to me?


jamie said:
Bitcoin was $19,000 last December - now it's $6,250.  
What a scam!  Imagine if everyone in South Orange paid their taxes via bitcoin?

 I still can't believe Torpey wanted to accept bitcoin.  He's now implementing bad ideas as Borough Administrator in Leonia.  I wish them luck.


Formerlyjerseyjack said:
Can someone explain blockchain to me?

 Does the wikipedia article help?


Tom_Reingold said:


Formerlyjerseyjack said:
Can someone explain blockchain to me?
 Does the wikipedia article help?

 My question is:  does bitcoin work when you have no power for a short, or long period of time?


If not, then how are people supposed to purchase goods in times of emergency (without cash)?


No, it won't work without power. Good point. I agree with this article.

Why Bitcoin is Stupid 


RealityForAll said:


Tom_Reingold said:

Formerlyjerseyjack said:
Can someone explain blockchain to me?
 Does the wikipedia article help?
 My question is:  does bitcoin work when you have no power for a short, or long period of time?


If not, then how are people supposed to purchase goods in times of emergency (without cash)?

Bitcoin isn't really meant to be a replacement for cash to buy bread with. It's what you buy illegal drugs off the Internet with. If you're in an emergency then you can try and barter for illegal drugs on the street corner.


Formerlyjerseyjack said:
Can someone explain blockchain to me?

 What's funny is that a lot of the people talking up bitcoin couldn't explain it to you.


Formerlyjerseyjack said:
Can someone explain blockchain to me?

 You know how there are dates on the photo files (say jpegs) on your computer?  There's a creation date, a last opened date, and a last saved date (the creation date often vanishes to your eyes when you save it again, but it's still there).  Even if you transfer the photo file to a CD ROM or upload it to the cloud, these dates travel with the file.  The creation date cannot be changed.  Now imagine a long list of transactions  being passed in a file that cannot be changed and which is updated and shared with every bitcoin file.  That's basically what a blockchain is.  At least how someone explained it to me; I'm open to correction.


@dave, that is my understanding, too. And everyone has a copy of the chain, so if you alter it, everyone will know, so you don't get away with it.


I'm not a bitcoin guy but I do believe that blockchain is a real thing. I'm in financial media and I've met at least a few people whose opinion I greatly respect, who believe that blockchain will be big. But apparently it will take at least a few more years to commercialize it. 

I went as far as to invest a little in a blockchain-focused ETF -- ticker BLCN. I'n down a couple percentage points currently, but I expect I'll buy a couple more dollops over the next year or so and then sit and see what happens. 

BLCN is a basket of stocks, so it doesn't have home-run potential like cryptocurrency did (does?). But  it doesn't have as low of a floor either. If blockchain realizes even some of its potential, I think BLCN can be the kind of investment that beats the S&P 500 by double-digit percentage points for a few years running.  


Smedley said:
I'm not a bitcoin guy but I do believe that blockchain is a real thing. I'm in financial media and I've met at least a few people whose opinion I greatly respect, who believe that blockchain will be big. But apparently it will take at least a few more years to commercialize it. 
I went as far as to invest a little in a blockchain-focused ETF -- ticker BLCN. I'n down a couple percentage points currently, but I expect I'll buy a couple more dollops over the next year or so and then sit and see what happens. 
BLCN is a basket of stocks, so it doesn't have home-run potential like cryptocurrency did (does?). But  it doesn't have as low of a floor either. If blockchain realizes even some of its potential, I think BLCN can be the kind of investment that beats the S&P 500 by double-digit percentage points for a few years running.  

 Bitcoin uses the blockchain concept, but it's more than just that.  It's designed to operate without any central management.  Over the blockchain operations, there's a verification/calculation function which incentivizes participation, by awarding Bitcoin for the performing of the "housekeeping" of memorializing transactions and updating the record of the Bitcoin blockchain.  The verification/calculation requires a lot of computing power, so the "minters" who do it have to expend money (there are specially-designed computer chips, the need for more and more electricity) to keep up and in competition.  

Bitcoin will keep working as long as there are "miners" who want to invest the money and effort into verifying the transactions.  If it becomes less remunerative, and they start dropping off, it may not work as well or at all.

Blockchain itself can be used without that second function, to keep track of all sorts of records and transactions or information.  It can be used within a central management structure, such as being run on specific servers or in a "cloud" that's managed.  That's where it's probably more promising in the long run.  Just my humble opinion.


Bitcoin exchange in Canada shuts down because they claim all funds were stolen by hackers.

https://www.yahoo.com/finance/news/newsflash-canadian-bitcoin-exchange-hacked-202509159.html

A small Bitcoin exchange based in Alberta, Canada, has gone offline. Before their Twitter page went offline, MapleChange had announced on Twitter that they “[had] no more funds to pay anyone back.”


only down 9% today.  $5,040


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