Monday, October 31, 2016

It’s Bitcoin’s Birthday: Whitepaper Released 8 years Ago Today

Today is Bitcoin’s Birthday. Satoshi Nakamoto released the Bitcoin Whitepaper eight years ago today, on October 31, 2008.

Also Read: Bitcoin and Blockchain Open New Management Frontiers

At the time, many people who first read the paper became interested in the background technology, and several wanted to see it in a working state.

It seems very few knew that was going to happen.

Once Bitcoin launched in 2009, the biggest success story in digital money was launched. Satoshi launched Bitcoin as open source software so anyone could use it, fork it and update it. At first, the early adopters were mainly from the cryptography community like Hal Finney, the recipient of the very first bitcoin transaction.

bitcoin market cap on Bitcoin's BirthdayNick Szabo and Wei Dai were also early adopters, with Szabo having developed “bit gold” prior to the Bitcoin whitepaper’s release. Wei Dai is the creator of b-money another precursor to Bitcoin.

Bitcoin’s adoption was a steady progress as more people began to find out about it and experiment with everything from forking and making their own coins to mining technology.

You can read the full white paper here.

The Bitcoin Whitepaper

“Abstract. A purely peer-to-peer version of electronic cash would allow online
payments to be sent directly from one party to another without going through a
financial institution. Digital signatures provide part of the solution, but the main
benefits are lost if a trusted third party is still required to prevent double-spending.
We propose a solution to the double-spending problem using a peer-to-peer network.
The network timestamps transactions by hashing them into an ongoing chain of
hash-based proof-of-work, forming a record that cannot be changed without redoing
the proof-of-work. The longest chain not only serves as proof of the sequence of
events witnessed, but proof that it came from the largest pool of CPU power. As
long as a majority of CPU power is controlled by nodes that are not cooperating to
attack the network, they’ll generate the longest chain and outpace attackers. The
network itself requires minimal structure. Messages are broadcast on a best effort
basis, and nodes can leave and rejoin the network at will, accepting the longest
proof-of-work chain as proof of what happened while they were gone.”

Bitcoin Has Come a Long Way in Eight Years

While thinking about Bitcoin’s Birthday, it is apparent that Bitcoin means many things to many people.

Some see it as a store of value, having at the time of publishing an $11.1 Billion market cap it certainly is one.

At the same time, others see it as a transaction system that enables people to buy and sell goods and services with minimal friction.

Alternatively, others focus the underlying technology of Bitcoin and its blockchain technology as the true value, with unlimited uses from storing data to improving bank transfers.

Many see it as all those things and more. They use it to buy goods and services from an ever-growing list of merchants and vendors, to investing part of their earnings in bitcoin to hold value.

Bitcoin Is Censorship Resistant

People in countries with unstable or low-value currencies use bitcoin to move their money and to protect their wealth. Others use Bitcoin to protect their money from governments who are more and more prone to seizing funds of its citizens.

Additionally, Bitcoin’s censorship resistance gives the disadvantaged, or those under oppressive governments, a way to make themselves heard.

bitcoin node count on Bitcoin's BirthdayBitcoin has come a long way since Satoshi introduced the whitepaper and launched the genesis block.

The Bitcoin processing network of miners and pools is one of the most robust networks backing any system in the world. While there is centralization, miners from all over the world participate in the network.

The network of nodes hovers around the 5k to 6k range with several different versions of node software represented. Bitcoin core, the main Satoshi client, comprises 84 percent of all nodes at press time.

Happy Birthday Bitcoin! You have grown and fought to become something that not only frees people but allows them to be their own banks, be in charge of their financial future. Moreover, you have allowed a voice to those who don’t have one and given an outlet to those in need.

The Bitcoin industry continues to get large amounts of capital influx on both bitcoin value, new companies, and investment in the ecosystem. Furthermore, Bitcoin has spawned a myriad of coins from Litecoin to Zcash. Smart technologies, contracts and more have grown on the blockchain, and on other coins like Ethereum and RSK.

Moving forward, we all look forward to what Bitcoin will achieve in the next 8 years.

What are your thoughts on Bitcoin’s 8th Birthday? Let us know in the comments section.


Images via Shutterstock, CoinDance, Blockchain.info

The post It’s Bitcoin’s Birthday: Whitepaper Released 8 years Ago Today appeared first on Bitcoin News.



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Crowdsale announcement: Mercatox – a new platform on the market. Beta- version release

Disclaimer: Bitcoin.com does not endorse nor support this product, use at your own risk. This is a Press Release. Submit yours today here!

We would like to present universal market platform mercatox.com. It is a unique creation in the world of digital money, based on multi-language platform. It combines automated trading, payment service, Peer-to-Peer sharing based on “smart contracts” and many other features. 

We are planning to provide not just a service with different abilities, but create a new financial market in the digital world.

Nowadays we surrounded by different kinds and types of electronic money systems. We connected them all on a single platform.

About MERCATOX and our plans

– Mercatox is a modern service for accessing e-currency and cryptocurrency exchange markets. Mercatox is convenient and advantageous platform for trade, exchange of various currencies, which can be used by both experienced traders as well as beginners.

– Lending traders. Mercatox will allow traders to raise funds for margin by trading on the stock exchange as well as for investors to invest and earn income on the loan.

– E-wallet with a wide range of payment instruments for personal and commercial use.

– Trading platform for commercial partnerships for the franchise within the «White Label» format

– Peer-to-peer exchange of electronic currencies, where users can exchange any digital title signs (all the world banks, payment systems, virtual, gaming, cryptocurrency and more). Transactions on P2P exchange are done through the service secure transactions via Mercatox or smart contracts Ethereum, bypassing the platform wallets.

mercatox.com – Beta version

We have been working on the platform for last 7 months. We have completed the first stage of the platform development and launched a beta version. Beta testing will last approximately 2 months. During this period of time the second phase of the first part of the project development will be gradually implemented.

Reed more about Beta http://ift.tt/2eVscRe

MERCATOX crowdfunding campaign

Crowdfunding platform will begin on November 20, 2016. We are starting the crowdsale in order to raise funds to finance the marketing strategy and the further development of the platform. During this round, we are distributing 5% of platform shares. Crowdsale will continue for 30 days – until December 20, 2016.
The first participants of the crowdfunding will receive next bonuses:

– First three days buyers – 10% bonus
– Buyers from 23.11 at 30.11 – a bonus of 5%
– Buyers from 01.12 at 08.12 – a bonus of 1%

Upon successful completion of this crowdfunding campaign «MERCA» title units (tokens) will be issued and distributed between the investors in proportion to the investment, including bonuses of the first buyers. After the platform release (at the end of December 2016.) «MERCA» will be eligible currency on the stock exchange.

With the development of the project, «MERCA» holders will receive dividends (part of the company’s profits) in proportion to the platforms income. At the beginning of the platform active promotion will start and will contribute to the rapid development.

Funds received during crowdfunding will be used for software revision and completion of the second phase of development. During the open beta test run (which is already taking place) we will complete the planned stage and will be ready for commercial release.

Reed more about crowdsale http://ift.tt/2fvIQup

Press contact:
Ann Dunaevska
info@mercatox.com

 

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Was the Bitcoin White Paper Intentionally Published on Halloween?

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Bitcoin and Blockchain Open New Management Frontiers

Bitcoin, the blockchain, artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things and other Fourth Industrial Revolution technologies are disrupting everything around us. In particular, they are disrupting the way we manage people and businesses. Furthermore, they are changing management approaches and fostering new business process creation.

Also read: Ernst & Young Report: Prepare for Blockchain ‘Critical Mass’

Industrial Revolutions and Management Evolution

shutterstock_237228259We have already experienced profound change in response to an eruption of new technologies. For example, the Industrial Revolution that started in the 1760s brought new production processes and changed management science.

Certainly, management science existed before the Industrial Revolution. This fact is demonstrated by, for example, the existence of the Egyptian pyramids and the Great Wall of China.

However, the Industrial Revolution led to new management theories, culminating with Frederick Taylor’s principles of scientific management. These principles include large-scale manufacturing and assembly-line production. They emphasize the rationalization and standardization of work through time and motion studies, division of labor, work measurement, and piece-rate wages.

Then, in the mid-1990s, computers and the Internet propelled the Third Industrial Revolution. Exploiting the prevalence of information technologies, managers reengineered business processes.

Reengineering, as defined by Dr. Michael Hammer and Dr. James Champy, is:

“The fundamental rethinking and radical redesign of the business process to achieve dramatic improvements in critical contemporary measures of performance, such as cost, quality, service, and speed.”

Now, the Fourth Industrial Revolution, i.e.: Industry 4.0, brings deeper change. As Klaus Schwab, Executive Chairman, World Economic Forum, declared, “One of the main features of the Fourth Industrial Revolution is that it does not change what we are doing, it changes us.”

Blockchain and Innovation Management

shutterstock_152851310Blockchain could bring pervasive change at a magnitude and speed never before experienced.

“On the business side, it drastically modifies customer expectations, product enhancement, collaborative innovation and organizational forms,” according to the European Commission.

To exploit the power of emerging new technologies, leaders and managers must become more sophisticated at innovation management.

Bitcoin and its blockchain are driving innovation across several industries. Therefore, it is imperative that managers become proficient at handling new concepts. These include the technology itself: trustless, distributed, permissionless, immutable, borderless, decentralized, and open source.

Thanks to these concepts, many executives and entrepreneurs envision the future corporation through the prism of open innovation and blockchain.

“Those that will succeed will be those that are best able to integrate innovation systematically into all aspects of the organization, to drive a higher rate of innovation in new business areas, and to manage innovation resources effectively and flexibly in a truly globalized and decentralized world,” concludes a report from Arthur D. Little.

Moreover, the advent of smart contracts that can control the millions of interconnected smart devices, which execute transactions without human intervention, are requiring innovators to be able to design, deliver and manage smarter products. To achieve these objectives, IBM has developed a new approach, insight and product innovation (IPI).

Harnessing the Power of Bitcoin’s Blockchain

shutterstock_234722569Specifically, emerging technologies combined with blockchain-based smart contracts are altering the way companies manage key processes, such as finances, logistics, audits, and trade. They are even reshaping the corporate structure.

Thus, to remain competitive, companies are feverishly trying to gain expertise to harness the this power. For instance, “Big Four” companies are working towards bringing blockchain-based technologies and services to their clients.

Deloitte is working with startup Bloq “to develop blockchain-related prototypes addressing digital identity, digital banking, cross-border payments, loyalty and rewards, as well as products for the investment management and insurance sectors.”

Deloitte is also combining cognitive technologies, the Internet of Things, and blockchain, through its Deloitte Catalyst initiative. Deloitte CEO Cathy Engelbert said, “Deloitte Catalyst is enabling Deloitte and our clients to more easily tap the power of innovation.”

Others Also Exploring New Solutions

Similarly, Ernst and Young is focusing on building blockchain-based solutions and prototypes. In this program, EY is collaborating with several blockchain forerunners: Adjoint, BlockVerify, Bitfury, BTL Group Ltd., Jaak, and Tallystiks.

For 2016, EY’s program has been exploring blockchain applications in digital rights management for the media and entertainment sectors, and energy trading for the power and energy sectors.

Also, PwC is partnering with Blockstream to introduce blockchain solutions to its clients around the world. “Together, PwC and Blockstream will help clients by collaborating on existing solutions and developing offerings to enable companies to meet new competition, adapt to disruptive market forces and lead innovation,” said Alex Fowler, SVP, Blockstream, announcing the partnership.

Certainly, the Fourth Industrial Revolution presents huge opportunities and challenges all around, particularly in the production and distribution of wealth. In this regard, Bitcoin and its blockchain are playing a vital role. However, to enhance these opportunities and minimize these challenges, management science must be adapted to enable innovators to collaborate and reimagine new business processes.

What do you think about the impact Bitcoin and blockchain will have in the Fourth Industrial Revolution? Let us know in the comments below.


Images via Shutterstock.


Bitcoin.com offers up-to-the-minute charts on bitcoin price and other stats. Our feeds show the bitcoin price index in all three major currencies (USD, CNY, EUR). Also, if you want to dig deeper into how the bitcoin network is performing behind the scenes, check out the statistics page too.

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Bitcoin Wallet Developers Prepare for Segregated Witness

Bitcoin Core 0.13.1 was released last week, which means miner signaling on the proposed Segregated Witness (SegWit) soft fork will start soon. If activated, SegWit offers a number of benefits, one of which is an effective block size limit increase to about 1.6 to 2 megabytes, depending on the types of transactions included in blocks.

If and when Segregated Witness is activated on the Bitcoin network, users will be able to take advantage of the added network capacity immediately — if their wallets are “SegWit-ready.” For users to enjoy this added block space, therefore, much will depend on Bitcoin wallet providers.

On GitHub25 wallets have indicated they will integrate SegWit. To poll their progress, Bitcoin Magazine reached out to a selection of them.

State of Readiness

Depending on miner signaling, Segregated Witness may, at the very soonest, be “live” on the Bitcoin network halfway through December. This somewhat unlikely best-case scenario leaves about six weeks for Bitcoin wallets to update their software.

The wallet providers that Bitcoin Magazine reached out to generally expected this should be sufficient time. Several of them are even ready to go already, or are in the final stages of development.

GreenAddress, the wallet provider that was recently acquired by infrastructure development company Blockstream, was among the first wallets to have completed Segregated Witness support, as early as February this year.

Speaking to Bitcoin Magazine, developer Lawrence Nahum said that GreenAddress users will be able to receive and send SegWit transactions as soon as the soft fork is deployed on the Bitcoin network. After that, he plans to improve the wallet, further utilizing the possibilities offered by Segregated Witness, such as MASTSchnorr signatures, and theLightningNetwork.

“I am very eager to make use of all good things in SegWit,” Nahum said. “I see it as a great stepping stone towards better fungibility and privacy, which I think are as important as — if not more important than — capacity increases.”

Regarding SegWit-readiness itself, Nahum added:

“Integration was quite easy. Desktop, iOS, and Android: All our wallets’ GitHub master branches support SegWit already, and recently we finalised some integration testing with hardware wallets such as Ledger to make sure it all works.”

Most of the other wallet providers contacted by Bitcoin Magazine also indicated they should be SegWit-ready if and when the soft fork activates, or not too long after. BTC.com — formerly known as Blocktrail — has been experiencing some delays due to the recent acquisition by ASIC-manufacturor Bitmain, but said that integration shouldn’t take much longer than several weeks. Electrum, the popular desktop and Android wallet, will include Segregated Witness support in the next major release, planned before the end of the year. BreadWallet, a wallet app available on Android and iOS, is in the testing stage, and will offer SegWit to users once it’s activated and deemed absolutely secure. AndMycelium, also available on iOS and Android, said it wrapped up the complicated part of integration, with only some user interface questions remaining.

Payment processor BitPay confirmed its intention to integrate SegWit as well for its Copay wallet and the new BitPay wallet, but the company is taking a slightly more conservative approach. Speaking to Bitcoin Magazine, BitPay CEO Stephen Pair explained that they will only start integration once it is more certain that the soft fork will actually activate.

“We do plan to support SegWit. The timeline for that support will be driven by the activation of the required soft fork,” Pair said, “but we don't know exactly when the activation will occur, so we don't want to spend time now only to have it take another six months or a year before activation happens.”

Increased Complexity

In order to be able to deploy Segregated Witness as a soft fork, the Bitcoin Core developers opted to place a reference to signature data in a somewhat odd part of Bitcoin blocks. Although this does not make the solution insecure, it does add some complexity to Bitcoin’s code-base, but the added effort for the wallet providers is not extreme.

Most of the complexity is “hidden inside” the open-source software libraries many wallets rely on. Several of these libraries have already integrated Segregated Witness support, and others should be able to include it within a few weeks.

Ruben de Vries is a developer for BTC.com, and one of the maintainers of the bitcoinjs JavaScript library. At BTC.com he also works with Thomas Kerin, lead maintainer of the Bitcoin-php library. Speaking to Bitcoin Magazine, de Vries said:

“Bitcoin-php has been ready for months. Bitcoinjs is pending review and some discussion because there are some backwards compatibility breaks. We could have it ready as soon as next week, though. For wallets, the change is very minor, technically. Looking purely at transaction building and signing, SegWit adds a bit of complexity, but not that much. Really, only full-node developers and projects have to bear with the full complexity.”

As a general sentiment, wallet developers seemed to agree that the Segregated Witness solution is somewhat “hacky” — but worth it. “I consider SegWit to be ‘Bitcoin 1.0;’ it's fixing a couple of issues that are like ‘beta bugs,’” de Vries said.

For Mycelium, Daniel Weigl has done most of the SegWit integration:

“When — in a SegWit-world — a new developer learns about Bitcoin and how things work, he or she will stumble over a lot of strange things that will not be self-explanatory without knowing what transactions and blocks looked like before SegWit,” Weigl said. “That adds barriers to entry in an already complicated topic. But I’m no friend of hard forks either, so I also would not know how we could solve that without those quirks.”

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The Blockchain Developer Shortage: Emerging Trends and Perspectives

Amid the steady rise of blockchain innovation, there are growing concerns about a looming shortage of qualified developers. With demand for talent outstripping supply, many companies are having to dial back blockchain related projects that are poised and strategically positioned for a rapid market launch.

In his book The Business Blockchain, thought leader and author, William Mougayar, briefly explores this emerging trend, noting that by his mid-2016 estimates, there were only “5,000 developers dedicated to writing software for cryptocurrency, Bitcoin, or blockchain in general.” He admits that “perhaps another 20,000 had dabbled with the technology, or have written front end applications that connect with the blockchain.”

All of this, he says, pales in comparison with the nine million Java developers worldwide, and about 18.5 million software developers in the world. But as the book documents, there is a silver lining of good news, namely, the blockchain’s good fortune of being tied to languages and scripts that are already in popular use — like Java, Javascript, C++, Node.js, Python, Golang and Haskell.

Says Mougayar, “Getting more developers proficient on Blockchain technology is key, and part of its successful evolution. We can't avoid not having a critical mass of knowledgeable software engineers that know how to program blockchains and develop blockchain applications. Whereas it might take a few weeks of effort today to get a seasoned developer up to speed on blockchains, it might eventually take only two days.”

Mougayar believes that efforts to address the prevailing blockchain developer shortage can be impacted by the following:

  • More general mass awareness about the blockchain

Steven Nerayoff, Founder and CEO of Maple Ventures, a Venture Capital firm primarily focused on emerging blockchain-based technologies and payment systems, says the blockchain developer shortage is quite evident among many early stage companies he interacts with. “If you take high level programmers and cryptographers, like Gavin Wood, or someone who works for DARPA or NSA out of the equation, you’re now talking about only a few hundred people that truly understand this blockchain development at a foundational level. That’s such a small group of people for a technology niche that could significantly change how people organize and live their lives.”  

Nerayoff goes on to say that this talent shortage is such that there are more projects in the blockchain space than people who are qualified to contribute. He does believe, though that this problem will slowly balance itself out as more and more qualified people migrate out of the government sector, and matriculate from colleges and universities.

Nerayoff says that the prevailing shortage will continue to be acute for those startups working on what he calls “uninteresting projects.”

“As an advisor to Ethereum, I can personally tell you that people were fighting to get onboard there. They had no problems getting qualified programmers. The same with Lisk. They’re a little younger than Ethereum, but as I’m observing their hiring spree right now, there are lots of  people who are excited to go work there in large part because they’re cultivating so many new ideas and fresh approaches. In my opinion, the best programmers always want to go to the most interesting projects, while others will continue to struggle to hire people.”

Nako Mbelle, Founder and CEO of the Toronto-based Fintech Recruiters, sees the daily challenges businesses face in recruiting and retaining top (blockchain) developer talent. She says that Python developer shortages are particularly acute, and that her firm has also been receiving requests for functional developers in Haskell and Scala, two niche areas which she says are particularly hard to find. Erlang, Golang and Python are among the other most commonly requested skills. “These functional programming skills seem to be all the rage these days.”

According to Mbelle geographical demand is greatest in the U.S., particularly in New York City, followed by London and the UK. Strangely enough, she says, her firm is getting requests from as far away as Tokyo, Japan.

So what needs to take place in order to address these shortage concerns moving forward? Says Mbelle: “Companies and startups should offer more mentorship programs for developers who are just learning functional programming skills. There are simply not enough software developer internships available. Everyone wants someone with three to five years hands-on experience, yet they often won't give developers who are trying to cross-over into the fintech space a chance to prove themselves.”

Mbelle continues: “In order to attract talent, startups should be flexible about remote working options. We're seeing a trend where startups want people in the office in order to build a corporate culture. However, the more experience a software developer has; the more likely they will want to work remotely, or have very flexible working environments.”  

With respect to the long-term picture surrounding this talent shortage, she concludes:  “I believe that more and more fintech companies will open up offices in Eastern Europe and Russia, because that seems to be where many developers are from and currently located. I think we'll also see more Functional Programming (training) bootcamps open up. And hopefully there will be more software developer mentoring and internship programs geared toward developers seeking to get into the space.”

Agentic Group LLC Is a global membership-driven consortium providing insight and consulting to corporations, non-profit organizations and government agencies seeking to understand and leverage emerging blockchain applications and digital currencies. Rik Willard, its founder and managing director, believes that the shortage is temporary. “Sure I think there is a shortage. But I think, as the space evolves, you’re going to find that the numerous non-profits and other learning outlets that are teaching blockchain technologies will have an impact on this issue.”

Willard says that what the blockchain world is facing at present in terms of talent deficiencies is much like what took place during the early days of the web. “There weren’t that many developers on the web in the early days. So various schools, academies, and groups got involved and began minting qualification certificates for the internet, ultimately leading to a massive influx of skilled programmers.”

Shidan Gouran is an angel investor with several blockchain startups and innovative tech firms, as well as the organizer of the Blockchain Event, a North American conference series. Gouran says that he doesn’t subscribe to the notion of a programmer shortage. “I hear people say that but in my experience there are lots of talented developers out there who are not involved with the blockchain space because it, frankly, isn’t important enough for them to be involved with.”  

He notes that there is nothing inherently more difficult about blockchain than there is with any other type of development. “You don’t have to be a cryptography wizard to understand how to develop a blockchain; you just have to know how to use cryptographic protocols. That’s something that people have been doing forever.”  

He says that the blockchain value proposition needs to make more commercial sense in order to get more programmers and developers involved. “More than anything, I think there is a shortage of good ideas. If a startup has a project that’s interesting and can really impact commerce and lives, then qualified people will sign on to start working on it.”

“I’ve often said that we need fewer white papers and more code,” said Gouran. “We need people who are starting projects and actually seeing them through rather than just doing crowd sales, raising money and kind of squandering it away, which we’re seeing a lot of nowadays. Ultimately that’s what I believe will attract top talent to this space.”

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Bitcoin Exchange Coin.mx Founder’s Father Pleads Guilty to Obstruction

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Caution is Neccessary, Bitcoin Traders

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No Bitcoin Treasure Island yet as Iceland’s Pirate Party Falls Short

Iceland’s Pirate Party has won 14.5 percent of the vote in the country’s general election, topping its forecasts but falling short of a majority.

Also read: Pirate Party Gains Favor as Trust in Iceland Government Crumbles

Pirate Party: Result ‘Top Of The Range’

The much-championed movement gained seven seats in the Icelandic parliament, more than trebling its presence for the next term to ten. Until the weekend, it held only three seats.

Polls leading up to the election placed the Pirates at between 18 and 30% of the vote, with a top score likely leading to a coalition-based majority in parliament.

Speaking after the results came through, the party’s leading light Birgitta Jónsdóttir struck a realistic tone.

Our internal predictions showed 10 to 15 percent, so this is at the top of the range,” she explained to Reuters. “We knew that we would never get 30 percent.”

Iceland’s troubled incumbent government and this year’s election campaign has been of special interest to the cryptocurrency community. As part of its mantra, the Pirate Party advocates use of Bitcoin and implies the relaxation of Iceland’s hard-and-fast ban on its use.

Jónsdóttir previously referred to a desire to turn the country into a “Switzerland of bits” should the party gain control.

The 14.5% result suggests that the Pirates will nonetheless wield noticeable power in coalition with other minority parties. The election produced other surprise results, with the Progressive Party losing 11 seats and brand new Regeneration party entering the political arena with 7 seats and 10.4% of the vote.

The most recent updates suggest the close-run contest is producing problems for the winning parties, with the prospect of complex coalition talks in store.

Jónsdóttir ‘Hacking’ Iceland Politics

Jónsdóttir’s language meanwhile signals a clear contrast to the establishment more than ever. In the days prior to the election, she likened her role of guiding the Pirates to political power to that of a hacker. (She previously expressed her distaste for being referred to as ‘leader’ of the party.)

“I definitely approach this job from the perspective of the hacker,” she said. “I don’t want to learn what isn’t possible, because as soon as I know about limitations, I start to respect them. It’s better to pretend you don’t know the limitations, so you can break them.”

Regret at the results meanwhile is by no means confined to one section of society. Young voters who came out in force to support the Pirates have been vocal about the need for Iceland’s political situation to change radically.

“I’m really sad,” one student told UK newspaper the Guardian. This is our next generation that is taking the country to the next level. But they keep voting for the criminals we have here.”

What do you think about the election results? Let us know in the comments section below.


Images via Shutterstock


If you’d like more information on Bitcoin in Iceland, search the Bitcoin.com Wiki or ask your questions on the Bitcoin.com Forum.

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Ethereum to Add Zcash Privacy says Vitalik Buterin

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Bitwalking Partners with Misfit Launching Wearable Currency Mining Devices

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‘Big 4’ Australian Banks Will Be Monitored to Avoid Blockchain Monopolization

Australia's competition enforcer will keep an eye on any big banks' attempts to cannibalize blockchain disruption.

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Synereo Aims to ‘Fundamentally Redesign the Internet’

Mediachain Launches Blockchain-Based Image Attribution Search Engine

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Blockchain Could Have Prevented Last Weeks DDoS Attack

On October 21 the Internet suffered a severe Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack. In fact, reports say nearly half the Internet was incapacitated with sites like Twitter, Reddit, Netflix and more temporarily shut down. Although the state of the web looks grim, the rise of blockchain technology may be able to deter DDoS assaults significantly.   

Also read: Stash Launches ‘Bank In A Box’ Bitcoin Full Node

Nearly Half The Internet Temporarily Incapacitated

ddos-attack-on-dns-major-websites-including-github-twitter-suffering-outage-2When unknown attackers targeted the Internet, it caused trouble for millions of users trying to access parts of the world wide web. They aimed the attack at a Domain Name Services company called Dyn. The assault first affected the U.S. east coast and then the rest of the country.

The DDoS continued to spread for a period of time and affected a small portion of users in Europe and other nations as well. However, the attack primarily affected the United States.

There isn’t a fully-confirmed culprit, aside from some theories. Yet many believe IoT botnets are behind these massive assaults. Conventional botnets are made up of a series of computers that remotely access data and push forward communication across the web.

However, the protocol is not all positive as researchers have found malicious attacks across security gateways. According to network security companies and cyber security expert Brian Krebs, malware botnets are definitely partly responsible for the outage on the 21st.

Blockchain and Cryptocurrencies May Be the Answer

Since the advent of protocols such as BitTorrent and Bitcoin, plus many advances in encryption, there’s still hope for the Internet. Many developers, entrepreneurs and startups are building platforms that will disrupt the web’s current centralization. Here are just a few of the many projects developing applications that remove the need for third party monopolies.   

Blockstack

aaeaaqaaaaaaaai0aaaajddiyzi2ytmylwmxndetngi3oc04zdcwlwq1mwmyodi5yza4mw-pngOne startup using the Bitcoin blockchain to thwart these internet issues is Blockstack. Formally Onename, the company is a decentralized Domain Name System (DNS) working towards a decentralized web. Blockstack wants to remove third parties from managing web servers, databases, and ID systems. Blockstack’s engineer Jude Nelson explained how their DNS platform could’ve prevented the October 21st attack.

“By using the Bitcoin blockchain to bind the name to a public key and DNS information, Blockstack allows anyone to register a name while simultaneously ensuring that only the name’s owner can control it,” says Nelson. “If the Dyn attackers wanted to knock websites offline in Blockstack, they would have to attack either the individual sites or attack the Bitcoin network itself. Even then, all the Dyn attackers could do is slow down name updates,” he added.

Nebulis

nebulisAnother project similar to the Blockstack vision is a platform called Nebulis, which uses Ethereum under the hood. Creator Philip Saunders initiated the project on EtherCamp — which is also a decentralized domain name system. The difference is, this platform uses IPFS as a replacement for HTTP and utilizes the Ethereum blockchain for DNS capabilities. Saunders hopes to release the project into the “core Ethereum system in Q4 of 2016.” After the initial foundations, Saunders will follow with a protocol called “Gravity” that will provide a link between Nebulis and browsers.

Maidsafe

h4eyhvu8UK-based Maidsafe is another project that wants to decentralize the web. The project came to fruition after a decade of research and development. Maidsafe focuses on removing centralized servers and creates an encrypted distributed framework across a peer-to-peer network.

The Maidsafe startup has recently released its Alpha network and hopes users will popularize the service, looking for an alternative to today’s Internet. The Safe Network removes centralized data centers from the equation and replaces it with a crowdsourced internet that relies on peer-to-peer activity.

DDoS Attacks and Centralization Will Soon Fall by the Wayside as These Projects Gain Momentum  

shutterstock_502765339Most people believe a decentralized internet is the wave of the future. Decentralization is inherently a strong foundation and is also the web’s original purpose. The goal is to continuously improve upon a neutral system that allows anyone to participate. Current centralized methods only bolster monopolistic corporate activities and increase barriers to entry. This means not everyone receives the Internet’s entire benefits.

A web 2.0 protocol and decentralized Internet is creating a buzz among freedom fighters and online activists. The emerging trend aims to build a peer-to-peer environment, built upon significant consensus and incentives. Some of these web projects will reward users who contribute content.

Platforms like the Dat Project and IPFS create a layer of frameworks that are censorship resistant, and content is never held within one location.

Because concepts like Bitcoin, BitTorrent swarms and powerful cryptography exist, the Internet is due for a change. Hopefully, these ideas are adopted in great number before more DDoS attacks, centralized monopolies, and censorship continues.

What do you think about blockchain technology and decentralized applications fixing the problems with the Internet? Let us know in the comments below.


Images via Shutterstock, Pixabay, Blockstack, Nebulis, and Maidsafe websites.


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