[Cryptography] Our leader opines on cryptocurrencies

jamesd at echeque.com jamesd at echeque.com
Thu Jul 25 00:19:52 EDT 2019

On 2019-07-25 8:13 am, Tom Mitchell wrote:
> What blockchain contract and transaction systems have value and which 
> can be abused

The past keeps being rewritten, 1984 style, the rewrites being 
increasingly drastic and increasingly frequent, partly due to increasing 
political repression and centralization of power, partly because keeping 
everything digital makes it easier to rewrite the past.  The blockchain 
prevents the past from being rewritten.

Ideally we want a system where everything that relates to a transaction, 
ownership of a name, or ownership of cryptographic keys, links to the 
blockchain, so that the parties can prove that at the time of the 
transaction, they saw such and such records, and made the transaction in 
the light of those records, but no one else can prove it, unless one of 
the parties to the transaction shows the records, as perhaps in an ebay 
style product review

> Can these distributed chains be seen but not disambiguated by law and 
> security folk?

Bitcoin blockchain records forever a whole lot of information that can 
be alarmingly useful for law enforcement - but not nearly as much as 
banked transactions, and with due care it is possible to avoid 
excessively interesting facts about transactions from being visible on 
the blockchain.

Monaro blockchain hides everything, but this is a problem for reviews 
and reputation management.  Sometimes you want to be able to prove facts 
about a transaction.  Also worsens the already severe scaling problems 
of bitcoin.

Hiding the IP numbers associated with bitcoin transactions using Tor and 
suchlike is almost irrelevant.  The problem is that you do transactions 
using the web and the DNS, which record everything. The web and the DNS 
is the big privacy hole, not the bitcoin blockchain.

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