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Blockstream Reveals Massive Bitcoin Mining Facilities, Fidelity An Early Customer

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On Thursday, blockchain technology company Blockstream revealed details related to their massive Bitcoin mining data centers in Quebec, Canada and Adel, Georgia. The facilities account for a combined 300 megawatts worth of energy capacity, and they’re currently available for hosting enterprise-level mining activities, in addition to Blockstream’s own mining operations.

Blockstream plans to open their facilities to smaller scale miners in the future. For now, two of their active customers include Fidelity Center for Applied Technology and LinkedIn founder Reid Hoffman.

The size of Blockstream’s mining facilities cannot be overstated. According to Blockstream CSO Samson Mow, the facilities would account for roughly 6 exahashes of Bitcoin mining power if used at full capacity with the latest ASIC mining hardware. This would have equated to 10% of Bitcoin’s total network hashrate less than a month ago, according to BitInfoCharts. However, the Bitcoin network hashrate recently skyrocketed to around 80 exahashes this week.

In addition to their mining centers, Blockstream will soon launch the first mining pool with a focus on putting more power back into the hands of individual miners via the BetterHash protocol.

Blockstream Concerned About Bitcoin Mining Centralization

According to a company blog post, Blockstream first got into Bitcoin mining due to concerns around the centralization of the industry back in 2017. At that time, the activation process for Segregated Witness (SegWit), which was a capacity increase and bug fix for the Bitcoin network, had become politicized by Bitcoin miners in the eyes of many Bitcoin developers and users.

Concerns related to Bitcoin mining centralization were recently discussed on a panel at the Bitcoin 2019 conference in San Francisco. Genesis Mining CEO Marco Streng explained why Bitcoin users should be more alarmed about the level of centralization in mining, while longtime Bitcoin developer Matt Corallo did his best to point out the issue may not be as bad as it seems at first glance.

Notably, Blockstream CEO Dr. Adam Back, who was cited in the original Bitcoin white paper, also spoke at the conference regarding his thoughts on the future of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies alongside Yugen Partners Chief Scientist Dr. Scott Stornetta, who was also cited in the Bitcoin white paper.

Putting Power Back in Miners’ Hands

In addition to pushing for the geographic decentralization of Bitcoin mining, Blockstream’s upcoming mining pool should be helpful due to its use of BetterHash. The BetterHash protocol, which was developed by the aforementioned Corallo, solves a key issue with mining centralization in that it allows individual miners to choose which transactions go into new blocks rather than the mining pool operators.

While Bitcoin mining is rather centralized in terms of mining pools, the picture looks much better in terms of the diversity of entities that are actually operating the hardware. Putting individual miners in control of transaction selection means collusion in terms of transaction censorship, blockchain reorganizations, or other types of 51% attacks on the network would be much more difficult.

Braiins also recently announced a new mining protocol, called Stratum v2, that offers a similar upgrade in terms of the decentralization of transaction selection (based on Corallo’s work).

When asked why Blockstream decided to go with BetterHash rather than Stratum v2, Blockstream CSO Samson Mow stated, “Stratum v2 seems to still be in the discussion phase, and we started with BetterHash months ago.”

Some critics may argue that implementing BetterHash while also developing large Bitcoin mining data centers may be a bit of a contradiction in terms of promoting decentralization, but Mow pushed back on this argument when reached for comment.

“I don’t believe Blockstream Mining poses centralization risks,” said Mow. “If anything, Blockstream Mining serves to decentralize the Bitcoin mining ecosystem in many ways. We’re self-mining with just a small portion of our available power, with the rest allocated to customers, and we have plans to make the hosting service available to smaller miners that otherwise would not be able to mine effectively. Also, by leveraging the BetterHash protocol in our mining pool, all of our customers can run their own full-nodes and build block templates. This means the pool cannot use their hashrate for censoring transactions or falsely signaling readiness for Bitcoin protocol upgrades – which has happened in the past as with SegWit2x.”

Even with these concerns around Bitcoin mining centralization, some U.S. lawmakers are convinced they would not be able to ban Bitcoin.

On the other hand, Facebook’s Libra cryptocurrency project would be much easier to manipulate, regulate, and control. That said, multiple members of the Bitcoin industry have pointed out the roundabout ways Bitcoin could benefit Facebook’s Libra.

That said, even if improvements are made to the decentralization and censorship resistance of Bitcoin from a technical level, the reality is the digital cash system still faces a serious regulatory issue in terms of its use as a payments mechanism due to the way in which the crypto asset is taxed.

Follow me on Twitter. Check out my website.

I’m a writer who has been following Bitcoin since 2011. I’ve worked all over the Bitcoin media space — from being editor-in-chief at Inside Bitcoins to contributing to Bitcoin Magazine on a regular basis. My work has also been featured in Business Insider, VICE Motherboard, and many other financial and tech media outlets. I’m mostly interested in the use of Bitcoin for transactions that would be censored by the traditional financial system (think darknet markets and ransomware) in addition to the use of bitcoin as an unseizable, digital store of value. Altcoins, appcoins, and ICOs don’t make much sense to me. Find all of my work at kyletorpey.com. Disclosure: I hold some bitcoin

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A Stark Prediction For The Future Of Bitcoin, ETH, XRP, And LTC

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Bitcoin, ETH, XRP, and LTC prices, will be on a roller coaster for a long time. Traders and investors will make and lose fortunes in record time, betting on them. In the end, say some analysts, these cryptocurrencies will either die on their own, or be killed by the ‘establishment’ — big governments and big banks around the world that defend sovereign currencies.

Take the case for Bitcoin.

The “people’s currency” holds a great promise: to become the first true global currency, free of the control of central banks that print money and big banks that generate credit.  But to do that, Bitcoin must gain the trust of the “general public.“ This means it must be adopted as a medium of exchange, standard of value, and store of value, replacing national currencies.That isn’t easy, given the many obstacles Bitcoin has to overcome. Like lack of awareness, familiarity, and stability, etc. And that makes some experts bearish about the future of Bitcoin.

Bitcoin Price YTD

Bitcoin Price YTD

Lars Seier Christensen, Chairman of Concordium, the next-generation decentralized world computer, is one of them. “In the longer term, I am bearish on bitcoin as I believe it does not have the necessary characteristics of a longer-term valuable asset and, eventually, that reality will catch up” says Christensen.“But in the short term, price movements will likely be random as Bitcoin is affected by low liquidity and unpredictable bigger trades.”

Unpredictability will make it hard for Bitcoin to gain broad adoption as a medium of exchange. And without broad adoption, Bitcoin will remain a play for speculators and true believers, and eventually die on its own.

But even if Bitcoin overcomes all these obstacles and gains broad adoption by the general public, and was in a position to replace national currencies — ie, become the new currency — what would happen then?

Bears argue that the “establishment” cannot afford to let that happen.

For a couple of reasons, including  the loss of Seigniorage” — simply put, the profit made by the national governments by printing currency. Then there’s the profit made by banks helping circulate that money and create credit.

The establishment will do whatever it takes to defend these profits from Bitcoin and any other cryptocurrency that seeks to replace it.

Recent Congressional hearings on Libra attests to the determination of the establishment to protect the dollar from competing cryptocurrencies. In a rare display of unity, Democrats and Republicans opposed Libra, and had many unkind words for Bitcoin.

“Cryptocurrencies that are ONLY there as a currency substitute, however, have no real long-term future,” says Christensen.“They will be outlawed by governments wanting to control the money supply and taxation, and in any case, cryptocurrencies have no intrinsic long-term value of significance. Hence, Bitcoin will only survive as a fringe activity.”

Not everyone agrees with this gloomy assessment, however. Dave Hodgson, Director and Co-Founder of NEM Ventures, is one of them.

“In my opinion, Bitcoin will never die nor be killed by the establishment, despite some people’s efforts to the contrary,” says Hodgson. “The recent drop we have seen in Bitcoin is within the boundaries of what our analysts were expecting from technical analysis. However, the timescale has been slightly skewed in light of recent announcements, primarily from US government representatives.”

 Corentin Denoeud, CEO and Co-founder of Blockchain Studio, is another .

“The fact that governments around the world are even talking about crypto is a sign of progress for the blockchain industry in general,” says Denoeud. “While countries such as India have called for the outlawing of cryptocurrencies, representatives from Germany’s Central Bank have responded favourably and advanced the view that cryptocurrencies are not a threat to global monetary stability. Even China, who has previously banned ICOs and cryptocurrency trading, has called bitcoin a ‘safe-haven asset’ (via its state-run media agency) and is now reportedly stepping up its own efforts to create its own cryptocurrency, following Facebook’s unveiling of Libra.”

 While it’s still unclear which side is right, one thing is clear: Bitcoin (and ETH, XRP, LTC, etc) true believers who think that cryptocurrency will eventually replace national currencies, need a 101 lesson in Money and Banking.

Follow me on Twitter.

I’m Professor and Chair of the Department of Economics at LIU Post in New York. I also teach at Columbia University. I’ve published several articles in professional journals and magazines, including Barron’s, The New York Times, Japan Times, Newsday, Plain Dealer, Edge Singapore, European Management Review, Management International Review, and Journal of Risk and Insurance. I’ve have also published several books, including Collective Entrepreneurship, The Ten Golden Rules, WOM and Buzz Marketing, Business Strategy in a Semiglobal Economy, China’s Challenge: Imitation or Innovation in International Business, and New Emerging Japanese Economy: Opportunity and Strategy for World Business. I’ve traveled extensively throughout the world giving lectures and seminars for private and government organizations, including Beijing Academy of Social Science, Nagoya University, Tokyo Science University, Keimung University, University of Adelaide, Saint Gallen University, Duisburg University, University of Edinburgh, and Athens University of Economics and Business. Interests: Global markets, business, investment strategy, personal success.

Source: A Stark Prediction For The Future Of Bitcoin, ETH, XRP, And LTC

Bitcoin Price Crashes $800 in Minutes as Bears Eye $9K Support Next

Bitcoin Price Crashes $800 in Minutes as Bears Eye $9K Support Next

Bitcoin traders eat their wallets

Traders were scratching their heads on social media Saturday in the wake of the sudden losses, with BTC/USD crashing from $10,180 to $9,410.

At press time, the pair had recovered marginally to circle $9,500, while a lack of obvious factors left commentators struggling to understand the market.

As Cointelegraph reported, a return to $10,000 earlier came as a surprise after a similar uptick occurred in a matter of minutes.

Previously, regular commentator Josh Rager had eyed a break below $9,600 as a gateway to lower levels, with the potential for $9,000 to also fall.

Some had anticipated volatility continuing in the short term. On Twitter, the trader known as CryptoCohen sounded the alarm hours before the $800 losses.

“Could be a larger correction in play – could take a lot longer too – longer than many would expect/hope. But good things come to those who wait,” he summarized.

Bitcoin’s move meanwhile had a more predictable effect on altcoin markets, with tokens in the top twenty cryptocurrencies by market cap shedding up to 4.5%.

Monthly, Bitcoin price has lost 20%, Cointelegraph noting that end-of-year and longer-term price forecasts remain bullish.

Source: https://cointelegraph.com/news/bitcoin-price-crashes-800-in-minutes-as-bears-eye-9k-support-next

Bank of China’s New Infographic Shows Why Bitcoin Price Is Going Up

Bank of China’s New Infographic Shows Why Bitcoin Price Is Going Up

A brief story: from Bitcoin to Libra

The infographic illustrates the story of Bitcoin, starting with the publication of its whitepaper in 2008, the mining of the first 50 BTC in 2009, 10,000 BTC having been spent for pizza in 2010, and other major milestones for the system, ending with the announcement of Facebook’s Libra.

“Yesterday the Bank of China posted up an article about Bitcoin,” commented Blockstream CSO, Samson Mow. “They explained how BTC works, why the price is going up, and why it’s valuable. Never thought I’d see that happen. #Bullish”

The factors behind Bitcoin’s rise

Another part of the infographic is dedicated to explaining why Bitcoin’s value is increasing, and it cites limited supply, increased mining difficulty, that it is used as a medium of exchange and anti-inflation safe haven.

This is in line with the remarks recently made by Morgan Creek Digital Assets co-founder Anthony Pompliano, who said that the European Central Bank’s expected dovish turn will provide “rocket fuel” for Bitcoin.

Furthermore, the infographic does also mention the infamous Mt. Gox hack, the risk of speculation, and stories of lost funds. According to the image, Bitcoin’s main use case is international settlements since its fees are low compared to legacy system while transactions are faster.

As Cointelegraph reported yesterday, the CEO of Chinese tech giant Huawei thinks that China can compete with Facebook for market share by issuing its own digital currency.

Earlier this month, Chinese media reported that China’s central bank is developing its own digital currency in response to Facebook’s Libra as the latter could purportedly pose a risk to the country’s financial system.

Source: https://cointelegraph.com/news/bank-of-chinas-new-infographic-shows-why-bitcoin-price-is-going-up

MegaMining The Next Generation To Home Crypto Business

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Mega Mining is an industry leading Bitcoin mining pool. All of the mining power is backed up by physical miners. Mining with the latest algorithms allows to make as much Bitcoin as possible. We aim to provide you with the easiest possible way to make money without having to do any of the hard stuff. With data centers around the globe, we aim to keep bills down and mining power high, meaning you can make more in a shorter amount of time than what it would take to mine from your home for instance. Our data centers are located in USA, Europe and China with dedicated Up-Links and 99% uptime!

We at Mega Mining aims to be the world’s leader in cloud mining by utilizing the most dynamic Mining Pools and focusing on the best paying cryptocurrencies. We believe that Cryptocurrencies are the future of financial system, which will transform the global payment system by providing faster, and safer transaction. Therefore we have set up Crypto Mining Facilities, which is the essential infrastructure for cryptocurrencies to function seamlessly.

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Source: http://www.megamining.website

 

 

 

Super Crypto Investment Banking

It became the first decentralized peer-to-peer payment network for using without any central authority or middlemen. In a nutshell, bitcoin is the money for Internet. Its original purpose is providing all people with universal currency for different operations. Bitcoin can also be described as the most prominent triple entry bookkeeping system in existence. Bitcoin has already changed people’s understanding of currency, payment and monetary system in whole. Its crucial feature is that there is no need in third party actions as people make peer-to-peer (P2P) payments just in 10 minutes, unlike credit cards which can take up to weeks to process payment.

Calculation and selection of financial planning

Example $10,000 annual return on investment

1.Firt small plan 0.88% HOURLY For 120 Hours–ROI(Return On Investment)–0.88%x120hours=105.6% per 5 days =133.6% per(30days) month =503.2% per 12 months
So $10000 invest in First small plan will total return $50,320

2.Second Plan 1.83% HOURLY For 60 hours–ROI (Return On Investment)–1.83%x60hours=109.8% per 2.5 days =217.6% per(30days) month =1511.2% per 12 months
So $10000 invest in Second plan will total return $151,120

3.Daily Plan 66% DAILY For 2 Days–ROI (Return On Investment)–66%x2 days=132% per 2 days =580% per(30days) month =5760% per 12 months
So $10000 invest in 66% daily plan will total return $576,000

We are glad to announce that Super Crypto Btc LTD(Crypto Btc Ltd) open to the public today. Super Crypto LTD is an investment company specializing in financial currency exchange and crypto currency markets,which founded by highly qualified analysts.

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Our company mission is to provide investors’ sustainable returns and guarantee security of assets. All investors from worldwide are welcome to use our service.Join Super Crypto LTD, your future starts from now!

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Your site Limited is registered in the UK. Our company number is: NO.10546498. We have DDOS Protection & Our GeoTrust EV SSL Certificate guarantees the security of your transactions. Our risk management controls All trades are taken with a focus on risk management and proper leverage.

Source: http://supercrypto.biz

This Week in Cryptos: Binance to Support Dogecoin while Cuba Looks towards Cryptos

https://www.pivot.one/share/post/5d22c450595ce748ab44b02e?uid=5bd49f297d5fe7538e6111b6&invite_code=JTOJYV

Bitcoin Holds Above $11,300, Top Cryptocurrencies See Mixed Results as Market Reacts to Lagarde Appointment

https://www.pivot.one/share/post/5d229a8d1d57e779e1f9bd0c?uid=5bd49f297d5fe7538e6111b6&invite_code=JTOJYV

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro Reveals He Doesn’t Know What Bitcoin Is

Jair M. Bolsonaro, the president of Brazil, has recently revealed in an interview with a well-known TV show host that he doesn’t know what bitcoin is, while speaking about his administration’s decision to shut down an ‘indigenous cryptocurrency’ project.

According to local news outlet Portal do Bitcoin, the TV show host has been participating in various cryptocurrency-related events recently, and was speaking to the country’s president about a cryptocurrency-related project barred by Brazil’s Minister of Human Rights, Family, and women, Damares Alves.

Bolsonaro, with a disapproving tone, stated:

She [Damares] discovered at the end of the transition last year that they were earmarking Funai for RS $40 million, and do you know why Ratinho? To teach indigenous people how to mess with bitcoin.

The “indigenous cryptocurrency” project Bolsonaro refers to was signed three days before the mandate of Michel Temer, Brazil’s former president, ended. It would see the country spend roughly $12 million to bring in an “alternative currency” for its indigenous communities, in a move that purportedly could “transform the reality of these people.”

As CryptoGlobe covered, however, the project saw the government sign a contract directly with the National Indian Foundation (Funai) and with the Universidade Federal Fluminense (UFF), instead of seeing organizations compete for it through a traditional bidding process.

At the time, officials claimed the UFF was chosen because of its “expertise” in similar projects. It’s worth noting, however, that Funai employees claimed the work that was set to be done was of “questionable technical relevance.”

Reacting to Bolsonaro’s disapproving tone, Ratinho asked the Brazilian president if he knew what bitcoin was. Bolsonaro replied he didn’t know but with help from the host managed to get a little more out:

It’s that virtual coin. I do not know how to operate that ‘train’ yet.

As Portal do Bitcoin reports, Bolsonaro’s son Carlos Bolsonaro appears to not yet properly understand cryptocurrencies. On the microblogging platform Twitter, he claimed the halted cryptocurrency project blocked “millions in bitcoin,” when in reality it blocked millions in fiat currency.

Featured image via Jair Bolsonaro’s YouTube channel.

Source: CryptoGlobe

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

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