[This piece originally appreared in McSweeney’s new issue, The End of Trust, a collection featuring over 30 writers investigating surveillance, technology, and privacy, with special advisors the Electronic Frontier Foundation.]
He explained the old version of blockchains - just a history of transactions.
New blockchain tech allows you to set up entire organizations that take actions trustlessly. Automated, decentralized programs. You could create an Uber competitor with no employees and no middleman costs just using ethereum smart contracts. Or a trustless, automated bank, with loans (this already exists).
Or automatically tax your citizens for any transaction they make on your blockchain, or autogenerate and sign legal contracts without a lawyer, or manage access to your own health data, or replace the current internet advertising model (also already happening).
It's WAY more exciting and disruptive than this interview makes it sound.
Haha yeah, Steemit is an early version of such a thing. It's a Reddit competitor where submitters are paid for quality submissions in Steem tokens (Ethereum, itself a token-based platform, lets you build sub-blockchains with your own token).
Mhmm... interesting... writing down... ethereum... mmm..mmm.
Obviously for such an adaptation the issue is who decides what is a quality submission. And it cannot be a popularity fallacy, like reddit upvotes are.
It cant be that simple, nor i was thinking about only rewarding quality posts or submissions. I mean, there is a lot of real life good things we can all agree are good - for everyone, factually, not just in some vague "nice" way. And there is other things ... hmm...hmm.
Yes?... Enter. Ah, Ridcully, just at the right moment. I have an idea...
The thing is people upvote what they like and what confirms their pre established beliefs, so thats a clear vector to reward any sort of ridiculous or horrible stuff, and there is no mechanism to balance it.
While many actually worthy submissions can be downvoted or simply not upvoted for a million of irrelevant reasons.
I have an idea and although its not ready for public, i can say i would have more metrics, not just one based on fickle public opinions and knee jerk reactions.
As Snowden explains in the article, currently, there is **(a)** proof of work and **(b)** proof of stake.
Bitcoin uses proof of work: So rich people, who can by lots of computers can corrupt the chain and re-write the distributed ledger.
In proof of stake, rich people can simply buy lots of the cryptocurrency and corrupt the chain without needing to waste their resources running computers.
With the current level of computing power we are capable of producing, it is not possible. Nor will it be in the near future.
And the day quantum computers are created, there are dozens of cryptocurrency protocols that are quantum-proof waiting to take over Bitcoin's dominance.
The commenter is clearly biased.
No, but spending power to secure a blockchain is one of it's downsides.
Blockchains are great for operations where you don't trust anyone else, which is where the power penalty comes from.
If you trust all the parties in a transaction, there is no need for a blockchain, but if you don't trust someone, you can use a blockchain to ensure changes are not made later on.
I think it's so funny how people blame Bitcoin for contributing to environmental problems, instead of advocating for more green energy production overall
It's like saying people should stop driving cars forever because oil is bad, instead of saving money for a hybrid or electric car.
If energy costs go down existing miners will expand their mining rigs to accommodate for it. Majority operate on an energy to dollar ratio to maximize returns, halving the energy price would mean people just use double the gfx cards. New miners piling on is a less significant issue.
XRP (Ripple) doesn't have mining, but instead a small amount of XRP is destroyed to create the next link in the chain. So there are other alternatives. Who knows what's best... Ripple isn't truly decentralized while Bitcoin is. Ripple, the company behind XRP, also controls (through an escrow) the remaining XRP.
XRP uses a node system that is primarily controlled by Ripple. They add more nodes as they are proved trustworthy. I think you can add nodes, but when confirming additions to the blockchain they aren't considered credible sources. In the future, if enough independent nodes exist, XRP will be decentralized.
Its not controlled by Ripple, there is a UNL that isn't mandatory. Anyone can be a node or use any list of nodes. It takes 80%+ of nodes to affect any changes to the protocol. So your wrong, it's much more decentralized and distributed than Bitcoin right now not in the future. Ripple controls less the 40% of the UNL there are hundreds of nodes now.
I was really impressed by him in Citizenfour, there is a scene where he says something like "Once this is released, people are going to try to make this about me, they're going to dig up dirt on my life, they'll accuse me of supporting terrorists, and the goal will be to distract people from what the government was doing" and basically laid out to the letter everything that happened.
>"Once this is released, people are going to try to make this about me, they're going to dig up dirt on my life, they'll accuse me of supporting terrorists, and the goal will be to distract people from what the government was doing"
So far surprisingly little of all of that happened. No dirt on his life has been dug, even the fact that he is still protected by Russia, THE ENEMY!!!. I haven't heard much about him supporting terrorists, not on the front pages.
In fact, right now, Snowden gets practically zero attention from media, Assange is getting beating from liberals because of Clinton leaks, Manning is forgotten.
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Why are you hating on Edward Snowden? Do you guys literally hate EVERY whistleblower? Julian Assange, now Edward Snowden. I bet you think Chelsea Manning is ok because she actually served time and was pardoned by Obama.
I like the ACLU for the most part as well. ACLU is libertarianism without the autism (I have autism myself so I'm not being an ablest).
Also, Merkle trees have been patented in 1979. The technology to create “immutable” records has thus been around for awhile. Why did people never perceive it as a magic bullet before the invention of bitcoin?
There are countless reasons for having to change a database record -
* people change their name (or gender, to reference a person close to this whole mess, Chelsea Manning)
* fucking countries change their names, or their laws, or their timezones , or any number of things
* mistakes are made during data entry or transcribing
* something happens upstream in the data flow, and data has to be re-read and updated
Databases aren't the objects in themselves, they are representations of objects in reality, and stuff in reality changes all the time - and databases must reflect that.
Lmfao. Snowden is such a fucking tech illiterate retard if he thinks this is how databases work in enterprise environments.
1. He thinks everyone has access to prod
2. He thinks everyone has read-write access to prod
3. He thinks everyone has read-write access to prod without audit tables tracking all CRUD ops
4. He thinks everyone has read-write access to prod without audit tables tracking all CRUD ops as well as more auditing software capturing every keystroke
5. He thinks when RW scripts are executed against prod it’s just fucking people doing whatever they want all willy-nilly instead of using SDLC and automated script deployments that have already been rigorously tested and peer-reviewed and approved
So fucking stupid
I don’t think that he’s illiterate. I think he’s realized that the only way a blockchain sounds like a good solution is if you pretend that regular databases are constantly being changed or erased by unauthorized randos.
Immutability is really the only advantage of blockchain and it’s not especially useful to most people, so blockchain promoters always have to hype it up to make it seem as if it’s solving a real problem.
He's a reasonably smart dude, just jumping deeper into the 'tech solutions can solve people problems' mentality. And once you go past the point of 'we can't have trusted central authorities' bitcoin is the only solution these types see.
It's just sad to see a guy like that, who sees the downsides, still shill for this garbage. He is well regarded and influential among tech literate people, and he just uses that to pump Zcash.
Truly we are in the darkest timeline.
That is why he had to steal from the NSA and fled to China and then Russia like he was searching for the world’s most tyrannical sugar daddy. He was so hopeless at IT work that he figured he could become successful as a whistle blower and get rewarded for it by a foreign regime.
Ironically this stupid and simplistic interview above doesn’t credit the NSA with all the cryptographic standards that they created.