Bitcoin Developer Activity Hits All-Time High Ahead of Halving

In the weeks leading up to Bitcoin’s halving, developers have committed more code to the cryptocurrency than ever before, according to available data.

In April of this year, Bitcoin Core had a total of 510 commits, more than in any other month since BTC was launched. A commit means code is uploaded to GitHub, a popular website for hosting open-source coding projects. Bitcoin Core’s code is hosted there.

Only a few other months in the flagship cryptocurrency’s history have come close to 500 commits. These were April 2018, and October and November 2019. Bitcoin Core, it’s worth noting, it’s the most common software used to run the Bitcoin blockchain. It was originally published by Bitcoin creator Satoshi Nakamoto.

bitcoin commits over time

Most experienced developers can contribute to the Bitcoin Core cod, and data from GitGitLog shows that over the cryptocurrency’s 10-year history 830 developers have contributed. There are currently, however, 56 active developers.

Bitcoin Core’s development is partly funded by the MIT’s Digital Currency Initiative and by some companies in the sector that fund full-time developers. These include BitMEX, Square crypto, OKCoin, Bitfinex, Chaincode Labs, and others.

It’s unclear why the number of commits hit a new all-time high ahead last month, although on Reddit users have speculated either programmers are “lacking distractions” because of the coronavirus-induced lockdowns, or developers are working on the code ahead of the halving.

One Redditor pointed out most of the commits were fixing tools that make it easier to test, and “tidying up sections of code that are a little messy or inefficient.”

By: Francisco Memoria

Featured image via Pixabay.

Source: CryptoGlobe

Please follow my Instagram: http://instagram.com/arminhamidian67

The last time #Bitcoin had 7 green weekly candles it pumped over 160%!! With $BTC so close to the halving many, skeptics expect a non-event or even a huge dump this time around. #BTC hashrate briefly smashes all time high, crypto on “Billions” tv show, news, and more! 🔶 ByBit Tutorial: https://youtu.be/W6-VCxNUD0g 🔷 Phemex Tutorial: https://youtu.be/jpIk167Af2g 🔥 Ledger Nano X Tutorial: https://youtu.be/zShw2X5lRhs ⏰ *Timestamps:* 2:30 Analysis 〽️ 4:30 Major dump possible? 5:40 Bullish scenario 8:20 $BTC on TV 11:27 🔥 Ledger Nano S Winner 🔥 Follow me on Twitter ►► http://twitter.com/TheCryptoZombie DISCLAIMER: I am not a financial advisor. This is not financial advice. This is just my opinion. Always do your own research before investing. I am not responsible for your trades… BITCOIN FLASHES SUPER BUY SIGNAL!!! $10,450 NEXT!? BTC OVER $20k THIS YEAR!!! https://youtu.be/Uwi2Z9h98dQ Watch this video again because it’s awesome: https://youtu.be/BJnxDr5N4s4 #BitcoinNews #cryptocurrency #altcoins #blockchain #cryptozombie #crypto #btc #bch #bsv #ethereum #eth #ripple #xrp $BTC $ETH $XRP

Deutsche Bank’s Massive ‘Multi-Trillion Dollar’ By 2030 Bitcoin Question

Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies have been written off by many as nothing more than a flash-in-the-pan fad, riddled with scams and criminals.

The bitcoin price, which looks set to close the year at twice its January price, has remained highly volatilewhile sluggish bitcoin adoption continues to worry those in the crypto industry.

Now, amid warnings that the “fragile” fiat currency system will be put under strain in years ahead, Germany’s troubled Deutsche Bank has asked, “will fiat currencies survive,” in what it calls the “multi-trillion dollar (or bitcoin) question.”

“The forces that have held the current fiat system together now look fragile and they could unravel in the 2020s,” Deutsche Bank strategist Jim Reid wrote in a report looking at 24 alternative ideas for the next 10 years.

“If so, that will start to lead to a backlash against fiat money and demand for alternative currencies, such as gold or crypto could soar. The demand for alternative currencies will therefore likely be significantly higher by the time 2030 rolls around.”

The report blamed “decades of low labor costs” and inflation for weakening the fiat system and comes after a year that’s seen the bitcoin price boosted by social media giant Facebook’s plans to launch its own private cryptocurrency, dubbed libra, and countries from China to the European Union begin to explore how to create digital currencies of their own.

Central banks are still struggling to offset the effects of the global financial crisis that birthed bitcoin, with worries another so-far-unidentified crisis could be looming on the horizon.

“Will fiat currencies survive the policy dilemma that authorities will experience as they try to balance higher yields with record levels of debt,” Reid asked. “That’s the multi-trillion dollar (or bitcoin) question for the decade ahead.”

Bitcoin is often touted as an antidote to the central bank, debt-based monetary system, picking up the moniker “digital gold” for its built in scarcity. There will only ever be 21 million bitcoin, with the supply drying up in the distant year of 2140.

Reid’s comments put him at odds with outgoing European Central Bank executive board member Benoît Cœuré, who last year described bitcoin as “the evil spawn of the financial crisis,” and has outlined plans for a European “central bank digital currency” to rival the likes of Facebook’s libra.

Deutsche Bank, which has seen its value cut by 90% in the ten years since bitcoin was created, has also predicted corporate and government banked cryptocurrencies will drive crypto adoption.

“Assuming governments back cryptocurrencies, and consumers want them, adoption rates will drive the timeline for mainstream use,” Reid wrote. “If current trends continue, there could be 200 million blockchain wallet users in 2030.”

Meanwhile, other banks are warning that the year ahead could bring an overhaul of the “status quo.”

“We see 2020 as a year where at nearly every turn, disruption of the status quo is an overriding theme,” Saxo Bank’s chief economist Steen Jakobsen wrote this week in a report titled “10 Outrageous Predictions for 2020.”

“The year could represent one big pendulum swing to opposites in politics, monetary and fiscal policy and, not least, the environment. In policy making, it could mean that central banks step aside and maybe even slightly normalize rates, while governments step into the breach with infrastructure and climate policy-linked spending.”

Follow me on Twitter.

I am a journalist with significant experience covering technology, finance, economics, and business around the world. As the founding editor of Verdict.co.uk I reported on how technology is changing business, political trends, and the latest culture and lifestyle. I have covered the rise of bitcoin and cryptocurrency since 2012 and have charted its emergence as a niche technology into the greatest threat to the established financial system the world has ever seen and the most important new technology since the internet itself. I have worked and written for CityAM, the Financial Times, and the New Statesman, amongst others. Follow me on Twitter @billybambrough or email me on billyATbillybambrough.com. Disclosure: I occasionally hold some small amount of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.

Source: Deutsche Bank’s Massive ‘Multi-Trillion Dollar’ By 2030 Bitcoin Question

 

The Large Bitcoin Collider Is Generating Trillions of Keys and Breaking Into Wallets – VICE

Since we first published this article, major security flaws in the Large Bitcoin Collider client have come to light. Check out our follow-up reporting on these issues here.

For nearly a year, a group of cryptography enthusiasts has been pooling their resources on a quixotic quest to brute-force crack one of bitcoin’s cryptographic algorithms for creating wallet addresses. This is thought to be impossible today, but if they succeed, at least one element of bitcoin’s cryptography will be instantly obsolete.

It’s probably due to the scope of the challenge that the project is called the Large Bitcoin Collider, after the Large Hadron Collider, the world’s largest particle accelerator. But instead of new physics, the Large Bitcoin Collider is hunting cryptographic collisions—essentially proving that a supposedly unique and random string of numbers can be duplicated. More on collisions and their ramifications for bitcoin later, but along the way the LBC is using its computing power to try and bust open bitcoin wallets owned by other people, and potentially taking the coins inside.

Read More: The Great Physical Bitcoin Robbery

The basics are this: bitcoin addresses containing funds can be accessed by private keys, which are generated at the same time as the address. Technically, a number of private keys could work with any given address, but you’d need a huge amount of computing power to brute force your way through enough possibilities to find any of them. The LBC attempts to accomplish this by recruiting the computing power of anyone who’s willing to download and run their software.

Finding a private key that works with an existing wallet is a fast-and-loose version of “cracking,” and gives the attacker access to all the funds inside. But when someone in the LBC pool finds a working private key, do they get to keep the coins?

“In principle yes, although there is a process defined where—if someone appears with an alternate key—the pool members consider him the owner of the address,” “Rico,” the pseudonymous lead of LBC, told me in an email. He would only tell me that he’s a computer programmer “past his 40s,” who lives in Europe.

As for the legality of all this, LBC advises participants with a rather laissez-faire attitude.

“Depending on your jurisdiction, this may be considered theft and is therefore illegal,” the site’s FAQ states. “However, there are many jusrisdictions [sic] where you could perfectly legally claim 5-10% of the value found. So you should consider if you want 100% and become a criminal or if you get 10% and still be a law abiding citizen.”

The LBC has been working for just under a year. So far, Rico claims, the project has generated over 3,000 trillion private keys and checked them against existing bitcoin addresses to see if they work, and has found three that do and contain bitcoin. They’ve found over 30 private keys in total, some of which are for so-called “puzzle” addresses that are suspected to have been generated as easy bait for crackers.

“This project has been called many things: Impossible, illegal, pointless, cool, etc.”

Cracking wallets may seem malicious on the surface—and if an LBC participant knowingly steals funds, it might just be—but it also has research value. Bitcoin security researcher Ryan Castellucci has done work cracking wallets as a proof-of-concept in order to model attacker behaviour and defend against it.

“The thing that disappoints me about this is that they’re only checking addresses that have a balance instead of all addresses that have ever been used,” he said in an interview over the phone. “For research, it’s much more interesting to check all addresses that have ever been used, because that will show you if there’ve been weak addresses created in the past and if they’ve been cleaned out by attackers.”

But cracking wallets is just one part of the LBC’s mission. The other is to find a genuine cryptographic collision, which would mean it’s possible to generate inputs that, when put through the bitcoin address hashing algorithm, generate an identical pair. If it were ever to happen, bitcoin would have to use a new cryptographic algorithm for addresses. This would be similar to Google creating a collision with the once-popular SHA-1 cryptographic algorithm, which ended its usefulness for good.

Read More: I Broke Bitcoin

“Finding a P2PKH-collision [one cryptographic method of creating bitcoin addresses] would probably mean the end of P2PKH but not bitcoin,” Rico explained, regarding the ramifications of finding a collision. “Bitcoin would evolve with new address types. Most certainly it wouldn’t ‘die’ because of this.”

Castellucci also urged caution when it comes to getting all riled up about the LBC’s search for a cryptographic collision in bitcoin.

“To effectively find [a collision], you would have to find some way to generate [keys] much, much faster than is currently known to be possible,” he said. “Unless they find some sort of breakthrough in cracking techniques, the brute force strategy they’re using poses no threat to anybody’s bitcoin.”

“Someone could play the lottery three weeks in a row and win every time,” he explained. “That theoretically could happen, but it’s safe to assume it won’t.” Castellucci isn’t alone in this belief. Others, on the /r/bitcoin subreddit for example, have been much less kind and called the LBC “pointless.” But that hasn’t deterred Rico.

“Since it’s inception [around] 8 months ago, this project has been called many things: Impossible, illegal, pointless, cool, etc.,” Rico wrote.

“I think there is more waiting to be uncovered by the LBC—including a collision,” he continued. “So with that in mind we really do not care much about what ‘someone on Reddit’ said.”

Motherboard is nominated for three Webby Awards for Best Science YouTube Channel , Best Drama , Best Tech/Science Podcast . Please vote for us!

Source: The Large Bitcoin Collider Is Generating Trillions of Keys and Breaking Into Wallets – VICE

Germany Is The European Leader Of Bitcoin & Ethereum Nodes

 

In what is emerging to be an interesting trend on the bitcoin network, Germany is fast growing as a hub for bitcoin nodes, as it is now responsible for 20% of all public nodes, inching closer to the United States, which accounts for 25% of bitcoin nodes.

Rounding off the top 5 for bitcoin nodes is France, Netherlands, and Canada. China may be experiencing a drop in mining after China’s strict approach to the cryptocurrency industry in recent times, and it is possible that miners may configured nodes to be publicly unreachable.

Similarly, it is also growing in terms of the number of Ethereum nodes, coming second again to United States, with 13% as opposed to the latter’s 28%. Data on the number of Ethereum nodes is conflicting, depending on the source. Here, China, France and Singapore complete the top 5.

Whatever the exact figure, it is clear that Germany is emerging as a hub for crypto activity. The nation’s authorities themselves are looking into the matter of crypto regulation.

Abhimanyu Krishnan
About Abhimanyu Krishnan

Abhimanyu is an engineer on paper but a writer by living. To him, the most celebratory aspect of blockchain technology is its democratic nature. While he’s hodling, he can be found reading a good book or making the local dogs howl with the sound of his guitar playing.

Source: Germany Is The European Leader Of Bitcoin & Ethereum Nodes

The Bitcoin Sell-Off Is Back, With Ethereum And Ripple’s XRP Bleeding Hard–Here’s Why

Bitcoin has taken a turn for the worse this week, falling sharply as the cryptocurrency sell-off that had gripped market for months the resumes in force—putting to bed hopes that the worst of the so-called crypto winter bear market is over. The bitcoin price has lost some 6% since the weekend, with ethereum down by 11% and ripple, a common name for the XRP digital token, off by 10% over the same period, according to the latest prices on CoinMarketCap, which tracks most major cryptocurrencies.

Source: The Bitcoin Sell-Off Is Back, With Ethereum And Ripple’s XRP Bleeding Hard–Here’s Why

%d bloggers like this: