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Messages - Travis Patron

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Privacy / Combining Email, PGP, and the Blockchain
« on: February 02, 2015, 01:35:48 PM »
The Royal Fork has been working on a project to combine the promises of bitcoin blockchain technology with PGP email encryption. This type of application has profound benefits over our current system in that it is entirely more secure because it works over the already well established standard of PGP message encryption which was developed in the 90s. It also brings the ability to reduce or even eliminate spam by charging microtransactions for every email send then refunding said transaction when the email is open. The only type of consumer this would be impractical for is spammers.

Here is an except from their article:

Because email encryption has been on the minds of many during the past year and a half, and GPG has recently released a “modern” version of their email encryption software supporting elliptic curve cryptography, I thought it would be fun to combine PGP encrypted email with the bitcoin blockchain.

A couple things which I think are cool about this idea:

Public key exchange has been the achilles heel of many decentralized communications systems. Using the bitcoin blockchain as a decentralized public key server largely solves this problem (and it’s completely invisible to end users).
Btc-PGP combines payment and messaging into a single communications channel. This could simplify marketplaces; a single email/transaction could order a product, specify a shipping address, include payment, and serve as it’s own receipt.
Email could be sent with micropayments in an attempt to fight spam. Everyone who messages you must pay $.05. When replying, you send the micropayment back….or something like that (yes, I’m aware that fighting spam is hard).

Check it out here.

Bitcoin / Free Online Bitcoin Technologies Course
« on: February 02, 2015, 01:20:06 PM »
A number of bitcoin enthusiasts and computer science professors are holding a free online bitcoin technologies course which is promising to go deep into the technical aspects of bitcoin. This seems like a fantastic opportunity to gain a strong foothold in understand a technology which will come to dominate our lives in the coming years:

The course was based on a series of video lectures. We’re now offering these lectures free to the public, online, together with homeworks, programming assignments, and a textbook. We’ve heard from computer science students at various institutions as well as the Bitcoin community about the need for structured educational materials, and we’re excited to fill this need.

Check the course here and sign up!

I will be enrolling, so if anyone wants to share notes/ideas, this forum is a great place to do just that.

Bitcoin / Analysis of Dormant Bitcoin
« on: February 02, 2015, 01:13:16 PM »
John Ratcliff has written an excellent analysis of recent large-scale movements in dormant (zombie) bitcoin. Here is an excerpt of the full report:

There has been a lot of activity in the world of bitcoin over the past two months, so much so that it has led to a lot of speculation about just what is causing it.  One popular theory is that people who were long term 'holders' are dumping coins on the market.  Well, it just so turns out that over 25,000 bitcoins have 'risen from the dead' in the past two months alone.  That is a lot of bitcoins, certainly enough to influence the market substantially if someone were to just go and try to sell them all at once.

There is no easy way to know for sure if these zombie bitcoins were moved because the person controlling them wanted to sell them, or simply because they wanted to move them to another wallet for security reasons.

What we do know, however, is that these 25,000 bitcoins sat in addresses for over three years, completely untouched, only to be activated in the past eight weeks.

The biggest most recent movements were on January 15, 2015, when on that single day someone who had not touched their bitcoin stash since June 10, 2011, moved 5,000 bitcoins.

Read the full article here.

Bitcoin / Re: Bitcoin Leading to a Collapse of the Nation State?
« on: January 11, 2015, 04:09:43 PM »
Now you're talking a whole apocalypse scenario there guy. That's a stretch. Technologies come but the people in power will stay there until there is no power left with them.

That's just the nature of politics, the nature of the beast.

Great shifts in trajectory are often characterized by great friction. What rises from the ashes is usually stronger than what existed previously however.

Bitcoin / The First Rule of Owning BItcoin ...
« on: January 11, 2015, 03:47:29 PM »
The first rule of owning bitcoin is ...

Never share your private key!

This cannot be repeated enough times. How many instances of a hacked exchange or wallet file have we already seen reported? Admittedly, these occurrences are actually a rarity, though the media likes to sensationalize them. All of these breaches could have been prevented by not trusting an external party to hold a user's private key.

The whole idea of bitcoin is a trustless payment system, one which allows you to be your own bank account.

The first rule of owning bitcoin is ... never share your private key!

Bitcoin / Re: Bitcoin Leading to a Collapse of the Nation State?
« on: January 08, 2015, 03:45:43 PM »
I would like nothing more than to have conventional, inefficient systems blown away by disruption and innovation. I cannot say for certain if bitcoin will end the nation state as we know it, but I do believe it is possible.

Will we see radical and unimaginable change in our lifetime?  I certainly believe so ...

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