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Monero and CryptoNote Derived Cryptocurrencies Doomed?


ASIC Resistance is futile.

Sitting in the pits of their protocol is a rotten thing. It’s at the core of the CryptoNote code. The inappropriately applied idea of “egalitarianism.” I mention this now because it comes up constantly on the “boards” during discussions. By boards, I mean the official (and unofficial — think Reddit) Monero and Bytecoin and other cryptocurrency channels. Most of the time, it is ignored or given some whitewash to hide the true colors.

It’s also a way to fool the average Joe.

There are discussions about ASIC’s v. CPU v. GPU v. FPGA ad nauseam. On the surface, it all seems rather mundane but there is a missing piece here. It is the piece called “why.” As in “why” are the CryptoNote fans so adamant about keeping the ASIC’s out?

There are built-in protection guarantees offered by the CryptoNote systems, you see. They advise that the most efficient mining systems will be made less efficient, by design. So, don’t worry comrade, stick around, help us developers stay rich. We will protect you by leveling the playing field. Kicking out the best ASIC players. In other words, even the most inefficient e-miners or e-mining systems will carry the same weight and power as the efficient ones.

On the surface, the CryptoNote systems appear to reflect certain political systems. The United States, for example, has two Senators (House of Lords) from each state and it balances against representatives (House of Commons), which are population-based. So the state of Rhode Island (our smallest state) has the same senatorial power as California, one of our largest socialistic failing states.

But the application of political/governmental power, I assert, is to protect a very narrow set of human rights. The right to life, liberty (freedom) and to own property…in the pursuit of happiness as it were.

If any CryptoNote coin claims that equality before the law is egalitarian, then I’d support them but they don’t mean this. They are not talking about inalienable human rights. Rights we are born with and not handed down or proclaimed on some document or granted by a group of thugs on a Wednesday. No, the CryptoNote gang is talking about social leveling and control when you use their protocol. E-mine with us, they say and we’ll do our best to look out for the “little guy.”

One cannot deny a certain group of people their rights, simply because they are able to build better, faster, more efficient machines to mine more gold. In cryptocurrency, however, you can punish such people. It’s a man-made network modeled on some very shaky ideals. It can change like the wind and reflect, in effect, a type of communistic crypto-paradise. From each according to his ability, to each according to his need. And we all know how well those political systems work. (Hint: they don’t.)

Unfortunately, this is the way many in the cryptocurrency community define “equality.” Egalitarianism with the blurred lines. If an ASIC or any system is developed, that will perform (e-mine) faster, it is blocked. They don’t want that. ASIC’s are sidelined in favor of slower, less efficient systems, so that the average slow processor (think ‘Comrade-in-Arms’) may still participate. That is not “equality” it’s a recycle bin bromide.

Of course, this won’t happen until the developers reap their rewards, however. After they suck in all the wealth, like any good group of politburo chiefs, like say, Bytecoin still does. Since they are anonymous, they can simply walk away and lay on a nice beach, whilst you wonder why such a perfect egalitarian dream went bust. Where’s your dacha, comrade?

Think about it. Fearing faster and better computing machines that can race through the protocols at speed, e-mine with abandon, and process with efficiency is backward thinking. It is the equivalent of the rolling “brownout” solution, instead of building more power plants. Of having everyone wearing dark sunglasses on a moonless night while driving his family in a compact vehicle on a major highway, with his headlights off. No trucks allowed, they can haul too much gold.

The idea is not to fear progress but embrace it. Use it. Accept it. Not hate it for being good, but use the technology to build a better and stronger private cryptocurrency, such as Monero. (Not Bytecoin. Why is that one still around? How many people will they fool?)

Monero suffers the “equality” falsehood. The egalitarian foible. You can see it in their constant “bar lowering.” They fail to embrace and use the newest tech. They wish to hold onto their slingshots, while the machine guns are being oiled and airplanes fly over their collectivist heads. They escape to their coding labs, tweak the protocols and rejoice that for one more week, they have halted the advance of technology with software. The Arms Race continues, however. And it will pass them by, if they do not adapt.

We all probably understand the reasoning. Why Monero (CryptoNote based coins) wants to keep the waters as level as possible by plugging the holes that keep appearing in their dam. To make sure big players don’t swoop in and take over the spillways. Allegedly, this is the current problem with bitcoin. But as the cracks keep appearing, the dam may break anyway.

How do they solve their crisis? How could any cryptocurrency, for that matter, make the process as fair as possible and not allow one giant mega computer to take over? That question will undoubtedly be answered by the new tech itself. Surely, if new systems (new tech) are developed, new cryptocurrencies will evolve right along with them. It seems that the “fear” of quantum computing should be tempered by the realization that it will also be utilized to better secure the new types of cryptocurrencies that will develop in its wake.

How about at present though? How can we help the private coins? Or any proof-of-work based cryptocurrency? If the idea is to mimic mining for gold, then a limit (number) of coins should be set. That has been done. But when more e-miners flock to the e-gold fields, it seems that less e-gold is to be had. Or, one or two strike it rich and they begin to buy out the others. Then the big groups come with their Goliath machines and the small miner moves on.

The finding of real gold is not about power, specifically. It’s about the search, the research, the location, the process, the physical reality – where the gold is – and sometimes it’s pure chance. Cryptocurrency of the alleged egalitarian type, the man made type, simply turns down the e-gold flow, when more e-miners flock to the field and vice versa. It does this by rejecting e-mining hardware advancements and playing to the weak hands – the comrade with a (CPU) pick and shovel — and that makes it weaker. It is not fair to those who are wealthier and smarter, but it does cater to the less apt and the less affluent. The upshot is, any two-bit dictator can force his slave CPU laborers to e-mine.

One problem with cryptocurrency of the people (as I submit Monero tries to be) is that the e-miners also own the e-banks – the transmission mechanism. The e-miners dig up the e-gold, smelt it, e-mint it into pretty little e-bars and if the e-miners are effective, they can take over the entire mine (51% Attack), and reassign all the e-gold ever e-mined, to themselves. Now that’s a problem. Chances are, if this happened, the e-gold would then become worthless.

Some say that this possibility (51% Attack) alone keeps the big miners at bay…unless they want to destroy the cryptocurrency. Now, who would want to do that? Competitors? Governments? Methinks yes, in the case of XMR or haven’t you heard?

Think about that. If there was only a single real gold mine on the entire planet you’d want to make sure no one large group owns it, right? So you’d pass a law to prevent it. “No smart, efficient miners/bankers allowed on Earth’s only gold mine.” Only picks and shovels here. Ma and Pa banks, please. We call it protectionism or a kind of a tariff. And we all know what happens then, everyone loses. But there are many real gold mines, just like there are many real cryptocurrencies.

Random e-gold (e-bar finds) are not fair they’re just random, especially if there’s a single e-mine, like Monero or Aeon. It’s like everyone digging in the same e-hole, but only one e-miner or a group of e-miners is rewarded at a time. In the real world, there are lots of real gold mines, remember? Lots of chances to strike it rich. It’s not, “Here you go, you won this e-gold-bar, but nobody else did. Maybe next time they will strike it rich! Oh, not really, we have a one e-gold-bar at a time policy. Sorry. No major strikes allowed, ever.”

Gold is not all in one place like Monero’s e-gold is or Bitcoin’s. And yes, I know I can mine different crypto’s. If I mine them with a pick and shovel, however, rather than an industrial process, it should make a difference. If I am wealthier and smarter and I can e-mine more e-gold with my industrial sized ASIC, than the guy with the CPU shovel then I should reap more e-bars, not be told that I’m being stingy. Not have to wait my turn at the freaking roulette wheel, like all the other nice e-people. At the same time, I shouldn’t be able to own the one e-bank (or the e-casino, if you prefer) that controls all the e-gold.

Monero’s (or any cryptocurrency for that matter) e-gold should not be e-mined all in one place. E-miners should not be told the e-mine is closed when their big e-steam shovels come out. No crypto should be 51% attack-able in the first place. We don’t lose our gold when the Chinese Government stocks up on gold bars. Why should we lose, if a bot scams the e-mining algo?

If Monero (or any cryptocurrency) can get to that place, then they or Aeon might survive. And by “place” I mean like the gold mining/selling process. Gold is mine-able by different processes, and with differing rewards. One might hit a “strike” of gigantic proportions in a mountain and then bring in the big guys or sell the “strike” to others. One might use a vast process that filters the ocean for gold. What is the equivalent with crypto? ASIC’s?

Then reality kicks in.

If a cryptocurrency does not attempt to provide a service like a smart contract or a remittance mechanism or represent an asset, it might fail for the same reason fiat currencies fail. It’s happening with crypto-fiat faster since we are not forced to use them. Unless they find some better way to instill trust.

(Full disclosure: I own XMR’s.)

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Bytecoin: The Good News?

Dear Readers and Listeners:

Be careful of those dark cryptocurrency streets. You never know who is out there…

I’ve been tracking Bytecoin (BCN) for several years. Reported on it in other blogs and have had the good luck to contact some of the movers and shakers of late. Those who are developing new websites, businesses, videos, and news blogs. They are marching steadily forward with an eye to business adoption and commerce – and not just events and interviews, like we often see with other cryptocurrency “hype.”

That is not to say that Bytecoin can’t be hyped like any other coin, but clearly – people are beginning to creep toward adoption. With all the past negativity surrounding this coin, I am amazed. They predicted collapse of this currency has not yet happened.

And just to straighten your head out, I don’t currently own any Bytecoin. I have in the past, however, and am once again considering an investment.

Bytecoin is refusing to die. Not only is it refusing to die, the newest set of supporters are pushing out, worldwide – if the ads are true.

Perhaps, and this is conjecture, it is not that Bytecoin is a wonderful cryptocurrency. Perhaps, it is riding the success of Monero (XMR). It’s brethren. Or maybe Monero’s fame is making people more curious. Both coins are dark horses. Both are essentially private, but which one operates better? You be the judge.

So far, we know of at least two new names associated with Bytecoin’s reawakening: Jenny Goldberg and Pundit Pawan Sharma. There are others, we are told, but everything seems to be in the works for now.

Anonymity is the idea here, so I wouldn’t expect more names to be released soon. If we can accept that Goldberg (probably another pseudonym) is in contact with the original Bytecoin developers, she is probably keeping a low profile for obvious reason.

Goldberg could also be one of the originals or a new owner of the code. We just don’t know for certain. And uncertainty – and money – don’t mix well.

But…we live in an uncertain world now.

Is this why Bytecoin might work in a world where money itself is becoming more indeterminate each day? Where the value of our paper fiats is falling or like in India, cash is made valueless overnight by ruthless politicians? Where even the old standby, gold, cannot seem to rise to the occasion?

We often think of price manipulation when it comes to gold – and silver. Why, in the face of fiat currency devaluation, have the price of the rare earth metals not risen into the stratosphere? Is the answer as simple as: we do not use them as money – currently? If we did?

Certainly, this is all food for thought.

The teams associated with Bytecoin are – if we can believe it – from India (Delhi, I believe), Russia, South Korea, China, and Singapore. I’m not certain if Jenny Goldberg is from one of these countries. I take it that Community Managers exist in these areas.

One question is of course, how does one become a Community Manager? Does Goldberg appoint them?

Pundit Pawan Sharma is from India and his website(s) can be found on the internet. Bytecoin.org.in is one of the Indian sites. The domain age is recent, so it still has not attracted a lot of traffic. That might change. The website is professional.

It is my understanding that Sharma is one of the Indian Community Managers.

Regarding the resurgence of Bytecoin, the new Community Managers have requested and received changes to the Bytecoin Road-map, through Jenny Goldberg, according to my research.

It also appears that the new managers, however they are appointed, are more interested in use-case scenarios. India and the reports of temple donations. Or are these only publicity stunts?

Maybe not.

What is different this time, however, is the connection of Bytecoin, with real people. Well, check that, the connection between Goldberg and the Bytecoin elders (allegedly) and the newest crop of commercial folks trying to give it a go – again.

Before, we had a list of personalities. The early Bytecoin crew, as it were. The Teto-Team. A team that kept quiet after writing some pretty high brow articles on Bytecoin.org. Guests also blogged for the Team.

But the blogs often carried a note of foreignness. Something distinctly not “English,” but close. They – the Bytecoin blogs – had a sort of choppy feel. In fact, they still do.

Might the Teto-Team be real people? They could just as easily be complete fiction. If that is the case, it would only be more fuel for the fire. A conflagration of trust.

It would be nice if they – the Teto-Team – could arrange a meet-up on the internet or appear at an event. Not necessarily a public one, but a verifiable meet-up. Real people in silhouettes answering the hard questions. Even Zcash has their “ceremonies” and judging by their continued success, publicity is working.

There are hints that this might soon happen. That the Teto-Team might pay us a visit?

I think I could even drum up some questions, just let me know. In fact, I ask that anyone who has a question for the Teto-Team or Bytecoin in general, leave them in the comments below, go to my Reddit or even peruse BitcoinTalk.org.

What is important about this connection, however thin, to Monero, Aeon and the surviving CryptoNote cryptocurrencies? Bytecoin was allegedly the first mover, but became sidetracked. Why?

There are many reasons for this. Alleged pre-mine scams. Fudged whitepaper dates. Creating more coins than allowed by the original software. But the coin has never died. It has refused. Why? An ongoing scam or not?

Is it just the loads of newbies (new investors) piling on? Are the Bytecoin dev’s simply skimming a few more bucks off the top as the ship sinks? Are Reddit account full of shills and sock-puppets?

We are told this is not the case.

Regardless of all the negative, more positive seems to flow from Bytecoin now. Maybe.

There are vendors coming online. Ben Tea is one. The site’s listed owner is Ira Sharma out of New Delhi, India. It’s less than a month old as of September 26, 2017. You can load up Scamadviser.com to get a read.

Here is a new site: Bytepay. Founded in August of 2017, according to the website. The site might be in Germany and/or the United Kingdom – according to Scamadviser.com. It is a payments solutions company and offers shopping cart plugins. The website features a video.

And All Things Luxury is new another site where you can spend your BCN. The domain age is over six years, but in this case, the owner is not listed. The website indicates a Canadian address and Scamadviser.com shows a US based website. Currently, one can pay with Bitcoin and Litecoin, but there does not seem to be a direct Bytecoin pay method.

And there are others.

Although Bytecoin lost Cryptopia’s business, it is picking up CoinSpot. They are in Melbourne, Australia, which is interesting because Cryptopia was in New Zealand. When you run Scamadviser.com you find that CoinSpot is a highly trusted website based in the US. Russell Wilson is listed as the owner.

The new BCN Wallet (web wallet) appears chancy at best. The site is less new and appears to be located in the US, but the owner is unknown.

A mobile (cell phone) wallet is next, we are advised.

By September 28, 2017, Bytecoin will have a new website. I expect a surge in volume and prices when – and if – this happens. Forgive my skepticism, but Bytecoin slept for a time.

If Bithumb begins to trade Bytecoin, all bets are off.

There is also a YouTube Channel for Bytecoin now: Bytecoin BCN. It was from the comments on this channel that I came upon a hint about a Litecoin and Bytecoin cooperative venture. But I find nothing about this online. The reporter left no link or other way to verify his assertion and he has not responded to questions.

What is the solution to all of this? How can we preserve the privacy of the Bytecoin creators and come to understand the coin’s history?

There are so many variables here. Who is holding most of the Bytecoin? If 80% of the coin can be dumped on the market at one time, who will ensure the coin’s survival after that?

Think about that. If you could stash 50 million dollars, secretly, and live happily ever after, as the creator of Bytecoin, why would you continue to work?

And maybe that is the answer. If Jenny Goldberg has the keys to the code, then maybe she can ensure its survival or live off the proceeds, like a common criminal.


Jack Shorebird