[Cryptography] Our leader opines on cryptocurrencies

Howard Chu hyc at symas.com
Sat Aug 10 19:04:32 EDT 2019

jamesd at echeque.com wrote:
> On 2019-08-06 10:01 pm, mccorrinall wrote:
>> But Monero is not the solution to this privacy problem, as it doesn't
>> scale at all due to its insanely huge transactions.

I think you're working from outdated info. The average Monero txn is bigger than
the average Bitcoin txn, true, but that has improved a lot over time.


While the average Bitcoin txn size is around 260 bytes, the average Monero txn size prior to the deployment of RingCT was around 2KB.
With the initial deployment of RingCT that increased to around 13KB. After the subsequent deployment of Bulletproofs to replace the previous
CT rangeproofs, the average size has now decreased back to about 3KB, and there is ongoing research into new signature schemes with
sublinear size scaling that will reduce txn sizes even further. Such improvements may deploy as early as next spring.

>> Sure, the concept
>> is interesting, but Monero will always only be used by very few
>> people. If you want to run a currency, you want to target mass
>> adoption. A currency, which no one uses, is useless.

Mass adoption of a mass surveillance tool is worse than useless.
> I have an urgent practical real world need for privacy, partly for grey market transactions, partly because of lack of trust on international internet
> transactions, and mostly because of state sponsored persecution of political dissidents, and I researched my options, and the answer was bitcoin, despite its
> massive privacy flaws, not Monaro, because the idea is to get lost in the crowd, and to do that, you need a crowd.

Monero transaction volume continues to increase https://bitinfocharts.com/comparison/monero-transactions.html
The crowd is coming. And the fact is that any new txn is hiding amongst all of the millions of preceding txns,
so it's already true there's a very large haystack for any particular needle to hide in.

> The solution for private transactions is not better cryptography.

Better cryptography is at least necessary, if not sufficient.

> It is to replace central banking and government sponsored fiat.

You can't replace them if you don't have a viable technology to use in their place. Bitcoin tech is not viable.

> And, most of all, to replace centralized data silos of commercial reputation.  The important objective should be to have a currency that supports a reputation
> system akin to that siloed by Ebay and aliExpress, but without the data silos, so that the difference between a marketplace  selling android phones, and a
> marketplace selling illegal drugs, is that you use one nym for illegal drugs, and another nym for android phones, but the reputations of these nyms are not kept
> in separate silos, or in silos at all.  The big privacy flaw of bitcoin, of every crypto currency including Monaro and similar currencies, is not that
> transactions are linkable, though that is indeed a big problem, but that transactions require reputations.

I don't see how this is true at all. Reputations matter between buyers and sellers in the real world, but not between currency sender and recipient entities on
a blockchain.

>  We need a system that makes public data that is
> required to generate reputational information, without exposing those engaged in transactions to violence by third parties.  We need a privacy preserving
> solution to the problem currently being solved by Ebay.

  -- Howard Chu
  CTO, Symas Corp.           http://www.symas.com
  Director, Highland Sun     http://highlandsun.com/hyc/
  Chief Architect, OpenLDAP  http://www.openldap.org/project/

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