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Messages - Travis Patron

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Bitcoin / Thoughts On the Blocksize Debate?
« on: August 22, 2015, 01:04:03 PM »
What are everyone's thoughts on the current blocksize debate? It seems things are once again heating up with the debate as Gavin Andreson and Mike Hearn have recently proposed a hard fork of the bitcoin software called BitcoinXT.

I've written up my thoughts in a post entitled Why BitcoinXT Must Never Gain Consensus.

What are your thoughts?

Sri Lanka may soon become the first country in the world to have universal Internet access. On July 28, the government of Sri Lanka signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Google to launch Project Loon, according to Sri Lanka Internet newspaper ColumboPage.

Google is providing high-altitude balloons, using the standard telco high-speed 4G LTE protocol, according to Project Loon project lead Mike Cassidy, in a video (below), “so anyone with a smart phone will be able to get Internet access. … “Since launching a handful of balloons in New Zealand at our Project launch in 2013 we’ve flown millions of test kilometers around the world trying to learn what it will take to provide connectivity to everyone, anywhere, with balloons.”

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Bitcoin / The Blockchain Is a New Model of Governance
« on: July 26, 2015, 10:10:01 PM »
As the Greece debt crisis unfolds and capital controls are forced down the throats of their people, bitcoin has moved back into the mainstream spotlight. With long lines in front of ATM machines reminiscent of the Cyprus bail-in, once again bitcoin appears to offer a safe haven.

While many people focus on bitcoin’s price fluctuations and potential increase in adoption, currency is just the first application of this game-changing technology. The core of the blockchain provides an alternative governance model to the current oligarchic control shown in the harsh austerity forced against the will of the Greek people.

In the six years of its existence, public awareness of this technology has grown by leaps and bounds. Now, most who are aware of this groundbreaking innovation know the blockchain is a ledger. Yet, this ledger is not simply for accounting monetary transactions.

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It’s not news that IBM has been exploring Bitcoin’s technology and its applications. But the computer giant has now released a new report, which claims that the blockchain could be the much awaited solution for the logistical issues surrounding the evolution of the Internet of Things.

In a near future, our daily lives will exponentially interact with a “network of billions of intelligent devices,” IBM predicts. This means we will need a bigger and more powerful connection to support all these devices. The network that connects all dots is already being called Internet of Things.

“As a global electronics company, we [IBM] understand the issues facing the high-tech industry and the continuous transformation required to thrive. Across the industry, companies are turning their attention from smartphones and tablets to a new generation of connected devices that will transform not just the electronics industry, but many others.”

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Politics & Society / The Coming Robot Distopia
« on: July 25, 2015, 06:25:16 PM »
As robotic prosthetics enter the mainstream, they will house sensors and cloud connected software that will exceed the human body’s ability to sense, store, and process information.

The first step in what futurists such as Hans Moravec, PhD and Ray Kurzweil have dubbed “transhumanism” — a post-evolutionary transformation that will replace humans with a hybrid of man and machine. It is merely a matter of time before human-robot couplings outperform biological systems.

Artificial intelligence and machine learning might produce the “technological singularity” — computer systems that invent new technologies surpassing those created by their original human creators.

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Bitcoin / French Megabank Société Générale Seeks Bitcoin Expert
« on: July 23, 2015, 06:48:40 PM »
One of France's biggest banks is looking to hire a developer with a focus on bitcoin.

Société Générale (SocGen) posted a job listing on 2nd July for an "IT developer on bitcoin, blockchains and cryptocurrencies". SocGen is the third-largest French bank in terms of assets, reporting $1.3tn in assets in 2014.

The 12-month contract, according to the post, would entail research and development involving cryptocurrencies and the blockchain. Though no specifics were outlined, the post suggests that the bank is looking to develop in-house software, citing "prototype programming".

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Bitcoin / Blockchain Project Factom Raises $1.1 Million in Crowdsale
« on: July 23, 2015, 06:47:07 PM »
Factom has received $1.1m in new funding as part of an equity crowdsale hosted by crowdfunding service BnkToTheFuture.

Billed as a data and record keeping layer for bitcoin, Factom had offered 7.8% equity toward a $700,000 minimum investment goal to be reached by 9:39am GMT today.

The project ultimately exceeded this goal, drawing 323 investors; each providing an average contribution of roughly $3,400.

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Nasdaq OMX Group Inc. expects to become the first major exchange operator to use the technology behind bitcoin when a project in its private-companies business goes live in the fourth quarter.

The stock market operator is partnering with infrastructure provider Chain to use blockchain to issue and transfer the shares of privately held companies. Blockchain is the ledger that drives the bitcoin digital currency.

The technology will be “of fundamental importance to Wall Street,” Nasdaq Chief Executive Officer Bob Greifeld said during a phone interview Thursday. “The benefits to the industry are immense and cannot be ignored.”

Advocates for the software say it will dramatically speed up and simplify how trading of everything from stocks to loans and derivatives is processed. Wall Street professionals endorsed blockchain in a recent Greenwich Associates survey, with 94 percent saying it could be used in finance.

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Bitcoin / Algorithmic Citizenship
« on: July 20, 2015, 11:36:51 PM »
Algorithmic Citizenship is a new form of citizenship, one where your citizenship, and therefore both your allegiances and your rights, are constantly being questioned, calculated, and rewritten.

Most people are assigned a citizenship at birth, in one of two ways. You may receive your citizenship from the place you're born, which is called jus soli, or the right of soil. If you're born in a place, that's where you're a citizen of. This is true in a lot of North and South America, for example - but not much of the rest of the world. You may get your citizenship based on where your parents are citizens of, which is called jus sanguinis, or the right of blood. Everybody is supposed to have a citizenship, although millions of stateless people do not, as a result of war, migration or the collapse of existing states. Many people also change citizenship over the course of their life, through various legal mechanisms. Some countries allow you to hold more than one citizenship at once, and some do not.

Having a citizenship means that you have a place in the world, an allegiance to a state. That state is supposed to guarantee you certain rights, like freedom from arrest, imprisonment, torture, or surveillance - depending on which state you belong to. Hannah Arendt famously said that "citizenship is the right to have rights". To tamper with ones citizenship is to endanger ones most fundamental rights. Without citizenship, we have no rights at all.

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Bitcoin / Raises $10.8 M From Investors
« on: July 20, 2015, 05:26:24 PM »
Two founders of the dating site OKCupid have raised $10.8 million for their new venture, Keybase, a cryptography “hobby project” that took on a life of its own.

“We’ve gotten more ambitious,” wrote OKCupid founders Max Krohn and Chris Coyne in a blog post Wednesday. “We have a new goal: to bring public key crypto to everyone in the world, even people who don't understand it.”

The Series A was led by Andreessen Horowitz, with partners Marc Andressen and Chris Dixon joining Keybase as board members. Nine individual investors included Alexis Ohanian, co-founder and executive chair of Reddit; Bre Pettis, co-founder of MakerBot Industries; and Adam Ludwin, founder and CEO of, which is working with Nasdaq to build bitcoin technology into its private investments group.

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The prolonged use of capital controls in Argentina since 2011 has wreaked havoc for businesses operating in South America’s second-largest economy — not only restricting access to foreign currency and leading to a heavily overvalued official exchange rate, but also exacerbating economic stagnation and double-digit inflation.

Under the leftist government of President Cristina Fernández, no immediate change is expected in Argentina’s complicated economic conditions, which have seen the use of bitcoin more than double over the past year, mainly among small businesses. This represents much faster growth than elsewhere in Latin America, according to, a regional bitcoin exchange.

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Politics & Society / Spain Enacts Orwellian Laws
« on: July 20, 2015, 11:08:09 AM »
On June 1, Spain passed a law enacting fines of up to US$33,000 for peaceful protest and filming of police. Critics of what they are calling “the gag law” say it is a step back into dictatorship.

According to the New York Times, citizens under the new law can be fined the equivalent of almost US$700 for “insulting” an officer, and over US$33,000 for recording and disseminating images of law enforcement — which are most important and effective during instances of police brutality and abuse of power.

Peaceful protesters could face fines of up to US$664,000 for participating in an unauthorized protest outside government buildings.

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Bitcoin / Re: Bitcoin Leading to a Collapse of the Nation State?
« on: June 25, 2015, 07:40:57 PM »
Szabo may be Dia and also Satoshi.

We may never know, but there is strong evidence to make a case presented right infront of us.

Good finds.

Bitcoin / Re: Bitcoin Leading to a Collapse of the Nation State?
« on: June 23, 2015, 01:50:16 PM »
I think our faith in nation state will definitely change but there is another view we might think about in relation to a complete dissolution. If we think of "nations" and their boundaries as the product of equilibria it might be that after a little bit more shifting all nations end up in an equilibrium and it is other paradigms that evolve and change. 

In this we can think of "nations" and their borders as necessary for peace and expansion but only once all lands are discovered and sufficient time has for enough decentralization and balance to form.

This becomes comparable imo to Satoshi's comments on bitcoin possibly becoming a collectible one day, less relevant, but possibly taking quite a long time to truly fade away.  I suspect he gets this concept when thinking about fiat and older types of monies. 

This is all relevant I think to the generalization of the kula ring conjecture:

It is particularly interesting that Satoshi would describe bitcoin as a collectible because one of the few people who could possibly implement bitcoin, Nick Szabo, also describes money as a collectible in his Shelling Out: The Origins of Money.

Satoshi's white paper explicitly leaves out Nick's contributions to internet currency but mentioned smaller and less important contributions, it would seem perhaps to distance himself as an obvious candidate.

Money / Re: A Key Insight
« on: June 23, 2015, 01:44:57 PM »
I have in the past felt that this quote, and a especially the bold:

    So here is the possibility of “asymptotically ideal money”. Starting with the idea of value stabilization in relation to a domestic price index associated with the territory of one state, beyond that there is the natural and logical concept of internationally based value comparisons.
    The currencies being compared, like now the euro, the dollar, the yen, the pound, the swiss franc, the swedish kronor, etc. can be viewed with critical eyes by their users and by those who maybe have the option of whether or not or how to use one of them. This can lead to pressure for good quality and consequently for a lessened rate of inflationary deprecation in value.
...refered to bitcoin's price in relation to the USD possibly because it is the world currency reserve. But with the insight from Travis' article is suggests rather the true stabilization is in relation to the mining costs of production vs the demand...

This observation seems quite significant.

This is precisely what I was aiming to articulate with the article.

The key insight is that the non-political industrial consumption index Nash would describe, is the mining costs of production vs demand in the bitcoin network. Although the USD is useful for speculators, the best measure of value of bitcoin is really the hashing power - something which is increasing exponentially.

If hashing power could be seen as the key factor behind the industrial consumption index, and a bitcoin node can be run from essentially anywhere in the world, could it be argued that bitcoin as a money system may solve the Triffin delimma?

Politics & Society / Re: The Zero Marginal Cost Society
« on: June 23, 2015, 01:29:43 PM »
I like to think bitcoin is a subset of what the concept of diginomics represents. It is a mathematical ledger of associating value to different addresses.

In terms of society taking care of itself, I think we are going to see a huge shift in the labor force in the coming decade due to automation technologies. With decentralized autonomous corporations such as the bitcoin network, miners are the real employees. With smart contracts, they will soon be the customers as well. This will render a good number of industries as obsolete.

Humans and their purely biological tool set will be driven out by exponentially rising computer power - something which will leave many worse off and many much better off. Because of this the inequality gap is set to increase, and certainly not decrease. Inequality is one of the underlying patterns of the universe - from expansion of the galaxies, to increasing complexity of business structures and societies. You cannot fight inequality with socialism, but must focus and encourage the very best of the best. Pareto's Principle would call this the 20% producing 80% of the results.

Let's just make sure we are always striving to be the very cream of the crop.

Money / Understand Everything Fundamentally
« on: February 14, 2015, 02:37:29 AM »
The following is a great article on the 'entropic force' that characterizes economic law.

Historic and recent scientific developments add to our understanding of how the entropic force from physics may govern everything in nature, including ecosystems and economics. This can be applied to fundamental analysis of potential political outcomes, macroeconomics, and paradigmatic epochal shifts, e.g. the current shift from the industrial to the knowledge age.

The following actionable points will be explained.

Due to Coase’s theorem, the EU crisis (and China and USA) will resolve in more gold and silver fiat price inflation, not the deflation of unsocialized defaults. This will continue until the global financial system is backed with gold.

Passive investing (bonds) are peaking and when the global reserve sovereign bonds ultimately die, i.e. US Treasuries, the ‘wealth’ in the current system will disappear (or be severely devalued or constrained to devaluation by capital controls), and the global financial system will be restarted with gold backing. Thus, the only way to short US Treasuries in the end game, are physical precious metals.

We are entering the end of the passive capital intensive industrial age, and the beginning of a knowledge age. This will require changing your thinking about what ‘investing’ means.
Resource shortages are the symptom (effect) of society’s ubiquitous pooling of capital, and not a fundamental cause of the current crisis. Resource needs will be resolved by the coming knowledge age. Arguably, this pooling of capital was perhaps necessary during the capital intensive industrial age.

Read the full article Understand Everything Fundamentally.

Politics & Society / Demise of Finance, Rise of Knowledge
« on: February 14, 2015, 02:33:37 AM »
The following is an excerpt of an article on the rising knowledge economy.

The new world order could be the antithesis of an apocalypse.

The economic plague besetting the globe can be entirely explained by the cycle of failure of passive capital, which repeats throughout history.

This futility of finance is mathematically caused by the pervasive human demand for a guaranteed return on savings and a guaranteed insurance in all outcomes, i.e. to avoid risking their knowledge or lack thereof— the generative essence of socialism.

Fortunately, the age of the rise of knowledge capital threatens to breakout of this futile cycle, because in its purest form, knowledge can not be held in a store-of-value (a.k.a. money) and money can only represent some quantity of hard resources and manual labor.

Read the full article Demise of Finance, Rise of Knowledge.

Politics & Society / Estonia Offers Citizenship as a Service
« on: February 07, 2015, 07:41:18 PM »
Estonia has begun offering citizenship as a service with their new 'e-Residency' program, essentially allowing individuals to become sovereign. The initiative boasts 0% corporate income tax, no intermediaries, and open source platforms for becoming a digital person.

It remains to be seen how this willunfold in relation to existing EU law and the health of the economy, but is almost certainly a relevant and interesting development. One can see how this type of digitization of soverignity will only continue. Citizenship will become something which can be shopped around for in the new digital age.

Check out the site at

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