News of News For Bears and Bulls

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Bitcoin shop, Brutal, Nov 2019

Bitcoin and most cryptos have become kind of boring price wise in a first for a very long time, but there’s actually quite a lot going on as cryptos enter that phase of doing, rather than just talking.

Well, beginning to enter that phase. There’s still people talking about doing, including an electric bike manufacturer, Greyp, which is apparently thinking of using the blockchain to allow or disallow access to bikes.

Nonsense is the first thing that comes to mind, but you’re familiar with Boris bikes, or shopping trollies where the concept is the same. You put a £1 coin in some slot, and now you can ride the bike through mechanic magic.

A £1 coin used to be in everyone’s pocket. Nowadays with contactless card payments, cash – let alone a specific £1 coin – is a bit difficult to find.

So why not upgrade the same concept and digitize it? Replace the £1 coin with a QR code, and instead of mechanically changing gears, you digitally do it.

It’s the future, because where we’re going, cash will probably be a thing of the past, the domain of coin collectors.

Welcome to news of news, the table chat where we clean our desk to make way for a new day, and after quite a few hours of being all serious and everything, we say what we please because no one reads this bit.

“Mining attacks allow attackers to gain an unfair share of the mining reward by deviating from the honest mining strategy in the Bitcoin system. Among the most well-known are block withholding (BWH), fork after withholding (FAW), and selfish mining.

In this paper, we propose two new strategies: power adjusting and bribery racing, and introduce two novel mining attacks, Power Adjusting Withholding (PAW) and Bribery Selfish Mining (BSM) adopting the new strategies. Both attacks can increase the reward of attackers. Furthermore, we show PAW can avoid the ‘miner’s dilemma’ in BWH attacks.

BSM introduces a new ‘venal miner’s dilemma’, which results in all targets (bribes) willing to help the attacker but getting less reward finally. Quantitative analyses and simulations are conducted to verify the effectiveness of our attacks.

We propose some countermeasures to mitigate the new attacks, but a practical and efficient solution remains to be an open problem.”

At a surface view, we weren’t too convinced these proposed “novel mining attacks” were too juicy, so it goes here. But, as you might expect, cats have to get smart, as do mice, or neither hangs around.

Not least because the idea of “freezing” an almost “living” blockchain may be nice in theory when utopia, but in this imperfect world, adapt or perish is an apriori.

“The Board of Directors of the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) on Sunday appointed Benoît Cœuré as Head of the new BIS Innovation Hub, set up to foster international collaboration among central banks on innovative financial technology.”

Das Luminatus, they’re real. Not in smoke filled rooms or in nonsense caricatures, or indeed in any way luminated. The opposite arguably. But the Bank for International Settlement is one very unique globally coordinating institution that, unlike any other, manages to have the Chinese and the Russians and the Americans and the Europeans act as one.

Its secrecy is as famous as is unknown by the vast majority. Their meetings inaccessible to the public, nor would any man or woman down the street even know who they are.

Their reach-out to the new generation almost non existent, but their coordination is now apparently upping a gear as they face global money and, well they’re the ones who were meant to global money, not kids.

“The [German] Federal Government is sending a message to the established financial sector: the digital transformation is increasingly affecting strictly regulated areas.

The Cabinet has recognised that it can significantly simplify issuing and trading of securities if potential intermediaries, such as custodian banks or brokers, become obsolete and transaction costs are dropped as a result.”

So says a legal consultancy, and they are right but it’s not too clear whether the largely old and of past centuries political class can muster the will of modernization and digitization.

In America the political “fight” is now apparently even for the blockchain bit. Let alone the crypto stuff.

Apparently some support for the blockchain has been taken off a bill after the Libra Facebook announcement.

Grandpas wrapping their head around all this “nonsense,” let alone distinguishing between Libra and supply chains, is obviously far too much to ask. Especially when their “donors” would rather this whole “kids stuff” just goes away. Presumably because even in their very old age they forget just how near they are towards going where they came from.

The Game Committee of South Korea has apparently denied classification to a blockchain based game with some claiming this was because it uses NFT tokens that can be bought and sold.

However, Chairman Lee Jae-hong of the Game Committee said: “This decision is not a total prohibition against game materials using blockchain technology, and it is limited only when the blockchain technology is used as an act of promoting the melancholy. We hope to see a lot of healthy games released using blockchain technology in the future.”

At first we thought “melancholy” was a miss-translation, but the game itself, Infinity Star, says it’s “an action RPG, set in a not-so distant dystopian future about characters who escaped an evil research lab to gain their freedom back.”

Maybe that’s not too melancholic, but it appears the classification decision – which affects whether the game can be distributed – was actually more to do with the substance of the game rather than ancillary things like it has in-game items, albeit in a digital form.

Yet the in many cases pretty much bot created articles, are the ones that get into Google News, rather than proper sources which are often denied access because bloated Google is arguably too fat to care about serving anyone anymore. Gulag some call them, for it does metaphorically send plenty to the digital gulag.

“A number of brands, media owners and agencies – including Unilever, O2 and Sky – have signed up to Jicwebs’ blockchain pilot programme, which is designed to bolster trust and transparency in digital advertising…

ISBA, one of Jicwebs’ founding members, is carrying out a separate study of the programmatic supply chain. It is an end-to-end industry market audit that will provide a ‘snapshot’ of some of the problems around trust that the industry faces. It complements Jicwebs’ pilot, which is evaluating how blockchain could be a definitive solution to those problems.”

They move far too slowly in some areas and in some others, far too fast. Blockchain in advertising was barely hypothesized this spring, now there’s a whole consortium.

Well, best of luck. You’ll probably need it because it’s no easy thing and it’s not quite something with immediate returns, but there could be hidden gems upon which one accidentally steps.

Something AXA perhaps could not quite manage, axing the blockchain based insurance dapp for flight delays, called fizzy by them.

Interestingly, their smart contract shows they had nearly 20,000 transactions. Not something to scoff at for frontier lands, but while our cynical mind says they probably always intended to buy what was a hackathon project back in 2016, adapt it and kill it, one should also consider that for flights it was not quite an insurance, more of a very simple form of gambling.

“We have nonetheless learned a lot on Ethereum and initiated a few ideas on customer centricity that will (I am sure) grow in the insurance sector.” So is quoted project head Laurent Benichou as saying, with a commentary adding: “He mentions claimless settlement, zero customer effort, trust by design, and instant indemnity as some of these areas.”

Meaning there’s potential, but naturally the first execution was not quite robust in an actually serving customers sense.

Not that current solutions are that robust. “Nearly a million angry customers of India’s Punjab and Maharashtra Co-operative bank are panicking as they struggle to access their money.

The bank is under investigation for alleged fraud totalling $600m (£466m), with police in India’s financial capital Mumbai arresting its managing director last month.”

So reports the BBC. No blockchain there to see what these giant entities are doing. Their blockchain is only one way. They see us, we see nat.

The MT Gox example is of course of use to the likes of BIS, but if gox was operating on fiat, the 200,000 bitcoins that were found would have gone to some corrupt fat pocket.

With this Indian bank, no one can investigate anything and though there are many very brave and very fine men and women in low level detective offices and in high level intelligence agencies, firing them can be very easy if they mutter.

While in the case of MT Gox, no one could quite be fired. Every kid could look at the blockchain, and they did, and what was an insolvency is now a 5x to 10x return for most of goxers, when had they not been forced to hold, it would have probably been a loss by selling the bottom as inevitably the majority tend to do.

“It’s a wild [bitcoin mining] ride. Net revenue of 959 million yuan ($137 million) in the nine months to end September was less than half of the level it was at the same time a year earlier. Similarly, the bottom line, total comprehensive income, swung from a profit to a loss of 223 million yuan over the same period. That’s largely to do with volatility in bitcoin itself, whose price has swung to as high as nearly $20,000 and now trades below $8,800. That meant Canaan had to sell its mining hardware at a loss.”

And with that Reuters’ lazy job in what could have been a nice story about the potential world first IPO of a company operating in an utterly new field, we end the table chat so you can go back to being bored about the non-moving bitcoin price.

Copyrights Trustnodes.com

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