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Thoughts on “A Cypherpunk’s Manifesto”, part 3

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Since we desire privacy, we must ensure that each party to a transaction have knowledge only of that which is directly necessary for that transaction. Since any information can be spoken of, we must ensure that we reveal as little as possible. In most cases personal identity is not salient. When I purchase a magazine at a store and hand cash to the clerk, there is no need to know who I am. When I...

Thoughts on “A Cypherpunk’s Manifesto”, part 2

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If two parties have some sort of dealings, then each has a memory of their interaction. Each party can speak about their own memory of this; how could anyone prevent it? One could pass laws against it, but the freedom of speech, even more than privacy, is fundamental to an open society; we seek not to restrict any speech at all. If many parties speak together in the same forum, each can speak to...

Thoughts on “A Cypherpunk’s Manifesto”, part 1

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Ever since discovering the early writings of the group called the “Cypherpunks”, I’ve been drawn to the thoughts and ideas expressed so concisely by them. These ideas shaped cryptocurrencies and all that I am working in right now. I am saddened they are not read as wide as I’d like. On the one hand because I think they warned about a lot of things regarding privacy that...

On Blockchain Software Licenses

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Blockchain software has its roots deep in the FOSS (Free and open-source software) movement (bold is mine). There used to be a time that not releasing code under a FOSS license, like MIT or GPL, automatically disqualified a project to be seen as legitimate. There are very good reasons for this, as the aim of blockchain software is to have free and open projects for transacting with people, which...

Yesterday, the @Bitcoin account on Twitter was suspended and eventually deleted. The account, which before the Bitcoin Cash fork of 1st of August 2017 had been used for information about Bitcoin, was well-known for being vehemently pro-Bitcoin Cash and extremely opposed to the Bitcoin as developed by the Bitcoin Core Team. Since it’s removal, it has been picked up by an unknown person who...

Twitter Treads: on Dishonest Discussions

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Language is important. It frequently shows our biases. One person’s “discrediting” is another’s “peer reviewing”. Which is it? Well, that depends on the quality of the review and whether it’s aim is honest or malicious. The same goes for “those who are tremendously succesful in business start to understand.” That sentence just doesn’t...

Twitter Threads: on Project “Partnerships”

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I don’t care is company X is involved with a well-known company. I’ve talked to plenty of such companies that have really no clue what they are getting involved in. As such, they are not a good benchmark to use to qualify a project as “good”. Anything can and will be used as a metric to declare a project “good”, especially as long as there is a distinct lack of...

Twitter Threads: Do Your Own Research

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There’s a very simple way to combat most FUD: Do Your Own Research. However, this comes with doing complete research, not cherry-picking the facts that just support your perspective or preferred view of reality. FUD is often based on presenting a very specific portion of facts in a way that distorts the complete picture, hoping (as often is the case) that 1) people are just too lazy to do...

VIDEO: The History of Bitcoin

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I made this presentation for the Amsterdam BlockchainTalks meetup in order to share the long history of Bitcoin with the audience. Most people were (and are) under the impression that Bitcoin just dropped out of nowhere in 2008. I wanted to set the record straight and show the larger development that it fitted in. In the process, I learned a lot of new things, which is why you now find the...

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