When using cryptocurrency becomes as easy as pumping gas or sending an email or depositing a check - watch out, because it inevitably will become that simple. It will make the run up we've seen in 2017 seem absolutely darling. I'm certain the usability will come. Personally, I'm waiting for Square Cash to figure it out and then integrate with Twitter.
But even so, the average Coinbase user's reaction to receiving their first Bitcoin is "Now what do I do with it?"
Both of my parents had this reaction. And the only use they've found so far is to gamble it on altcoins like they have in the past with penny stocks!
So the whole "transferring coins or buying goods and services" part has a looooong way to go.
Which is really all cryptocurrencies are good for at the moment. Nobody in their right mind would use anything so volatile to buy/sell goods and services.
Fwiw, this was outside the US.
(Now I will be probably downvoted to hell as usual because mentioning Dash, but Dash Evolution is absolutely ontopic when it comes to user friendly crypto: That project is the biggest effort to make cryptos user-friendly in the industry.)
That's assumed and not proven. There's a lot of dislike for Dash on r/CryptoCurrency for a reason. One of the biggest issues is where its creator, Evan Duffield, instamined/premined a ton of coins "by accident" and didn't start over for a fair launch. In the first two days, he mined 1.9 million coins (10% of the supply).
I believe a Bitcoin debit card would do everything you say... But if someone skims my card at the pump and takes all my bitdimes, I want that to be a resolvable problem. The thing I fear most about mainstreaming Bitcoin is buyer protection.
Super nice to impress your friends by buying burgers with yesterdays gains :P
> Do you only use a hot wallet for all your coin?
> Do you keep your savings in your checking account?
Moving coins manually between a hot and cold wallet is a hassle and what I would consider a significantly worse user experience than what exists today.
Get a second account, even if it's low / no interest, and put the bulk of your money there. That way if your checking account is emptied the attacker only gets your spending money. Don't spend directly from the second account; move money from the "savings" account into checking regularly (monthly by scheduled task if you can't / don't use internet banking, as required if you do). Will also help with budgeting if you have an extra step in making large sums of money available. Not saying you don't / can't budget, just offering experience!
[wallet 432JYE]: help
fee Print information about fee and current transaction backlog
set Available options: seed language - set wallet seed language; always-confirm-transfers <1|0> - whether to confirm unsplit txes; print-ring-members <1|0> - whether to print detailed information about ring members during confirmation; store-tx-info <1|0> - whether to store outgoing tx info (destination address, payment ID, tx secret key) for future reference; default-ring-size <n> - set default ring size (default is 5); auto-refresh <1|0> - whether to automatically sync new blocks from the daemon; refresh-type <full|optimize-coinbase|no-coinbase|default> - set wallet refresh behaviour; priority [0|1|2|3|4] - default/unimportant/normal/elevated/priority fee; confirm-missing-payment-id <1|0>; ask-password <1|0>; unit <monero|millinero|micronero|nanonero|piconero> - set default monero (sub-)unit; min-outputs-count [n] - try to keep at least that many outputs of value at least min-outputs-value; min-outputs-value [n] - try to keep at least min-outputs-count outputs of at least that value; merge-destinations <1|0> - whether to merge multiple payments to the same destination address; confirm-backlog <1|0> - whether to warn if there is transaction backlog; refresh-from-block-height [n] - set height before which to ignore blocks
[wallet 432JYE]: fee
Current fee is 0.000222060000 monero per kB
2 block (4 minutes) backlog at priority 1
1 block (2 minutes) backlog at priority 2 (current)
1 block (2 minutes) backlog at priority 3
No backlog at priority 4
[wallet 432JYE]: set priority 3
Wallet password: ***************************************
I deleted 26BTC a while back when reinstalling a laptop, because they were effectively worthless. A few years later, they weren't anymore, so I wrote this to get them back. As long as the file system isn't encrypted, it scans the raw bytes on the disk to find remnants of wallets. It also unzips compressed files it finds and does the same scanning in there.
> go install github.com/jakewins/findbtc
I'll update the readme!
If that's giving you trouble, I can cross compile it here and upload a binary to github for you if you tell me your OS and processor - although since this is potentially sensitive software, I'd advice building it from source
Basically, what is at that offset is (remnants of) a Berkeley DB file; you'll need manually do the forensic work to get the key out of it past that. Alternatively, there are services that will recover locked/corrupted wallet files I think, so you could extract a big blob around that byte offset and find someone that will do the forensic work for you.
Bitcoin was supposed to be slightly inflationary, due to mining. But if a sufficient fraction is lost every year due to hardware failures and forgotten passwords, it will end up being deflationary. Someday (around log(1e6)/log(1+x) years from now, where x is the fraction lost every year), there'll be only 21 bitcoins left in the world, trading either at 0 or a number with 3 or 4 commas.
[edit: fixed in/de-flation mixup]
Anyway, second part:
https://bitinfocharts.com/top-100-richest-bitcoin-addresses.... is a good list. What you're looking for are wallets with a really early first in and no first out (or not one in a really long time).
#4 is a good one! https://bitinfocharts.com/bitcoin/address/1FeexV6bAHb8ybZjqQ... This wallet was last touched in 2011 and has $1,008,433,581.88 in it (yes, ba-ba-billion) Either this is the most disciplined investor ever or it's a lost file.
This person dropped $1,000 in 2010 on a few btc and it's now worth $245million (https://bitinfocharts.com/bitcoin/address/1PeizMg76Cf96nUQrY...) ... again, that's either super discipline or just a misplaced file.
The untouched wallets are sadly really really common, especially when you get a few pages in ... you see things like this: https://bitinfocharts.com/bitcoin/address/13DyBwhpDw6152q1dr... ... this person put in $8 (100btc), then $21 (400), then $122 (1700) and that was their july, 2010. Now it's $26.3 million.
Nobody ever believed the fantasy talk in 2010 that 1 btc was going to be worth a dollar, yet alone 12,500! Lots of people were really careless.
I'm there somewhere and have millions of dollars of bitcoins in a lost wallet. Weee, how fun!
At least that's how I'd like to think of it, otherwise some poor sod is having to think about this every single day.
With quantum computing it's expected that the ECDSA public-key cryptography used in bitcoin addresses will be broken. However, the ECDSA public key is only exposed when your first transaction out of the address is signed. If you only use addresses once (recommended practice), an attacker would have to break your private key faster than it takes for your transaction to propagate to the entire network in order to steal your coins. It would take a long time between the first cracking of ECDSA to nearly instantly being able to crack it. For example, the first publicly-disclosed attack on SHA1 took 110 GPU-years.
If the accounts listed by the OP have sent transactions in the past and reused addresses (which was common back in 2010/11), it's possible the private keys can be bruteforced in the future.
If not, we don't know the ECDSA public key for the address. Bruteforcing it gets a LOT harder--but never say never.
A lot of people track and watch these wallets to see if anything moves, it would cause a lot of panic if these lost coins started moving.
Ie, if one day Coinbase says something like, "sorry, we lost the password to one of our internal coin wallets due to technical error, and your 5.1 bitcoins are lost."
I bet there's some clause in their terms that tries to shield them from this, but wonder how enforceable it would be.
Ie, a regular bank presumably couldn't just say, "sorry we lost your $50k deposit due to technical error". They'd be liable.
Ie, there's a small chance of a user screwing up. And since there's no recourse, always a perpetual small chance of someone losing their bitcoins.
I think you got your terms mixed up.
He is not alone in this.
(Sounds like he went to a good party, the night was long and when he finally got back home he realized he didn't have his hard drive on him anymore.)
Now a pen-drive maybe, but that wouldn't be the place to store my wallet anyway.
Ah well, 20 grand lost in limbo.
>Wealth disparity is at record levels and the ultrarich have cornered the market on every asset class, but with bitcoin, an entirely new economy has sprung into existence. That's the pitch for decentralized cryptocurrencies: They offer hope that there might be another, fairer way of doing things.
The irony here is Bitcoin, like most other cryptocurrencies are structured similar to a pyramid scheme and highly favor existing capital to control the supply and exploiting users who join the network past a certain date where barrier to entry increases.
They tell the story of acquiring this digital asset for a small capital sum, and simply passing it off to someone else for a greater sum. The intention is not utility but psychological exploitation of greater fools.
Best estimates (2014) are that there are
about one million holders of
Bitcoin; 47 individuals hold about
30 percent, another 900 hold a
further 20 percent, the next
10,000 about 25% and another
million about 20%, with 5% being
lost. So 1/10th of one percent
represent about half the holdings
of Bitcoin and 1 percent close to
I think (entirely without proof) it's likely that many of these organisers were/are holding large quantities of bitcoins themselves and have become unwitting millionaires.
I haven't heard anybody mention this before, but I'm very curious to know if this bears any grain of truth. If the people who led rallies against the top 1% suddenly find themselves deep inside that 1% tail.
I suspect (no proof either) many early bitcoin adopters sold most of their bitcoins long ago. They cashed out when their capital reached a significant amount, long before becoming millionnaire. For instance, I suppose that if today my BC portfolio were worth $5000, I'd sell them (because I certainly would not buy $5000 worth of BC today if I had none).
The first (few) million are life changing. But the difference between 20 and 100m is flying private and owning a yacht vs flying first and chartering one for the week.
Some may regard "going long" as the bedrock of strategic investment and realizing short-term gains is erroneous, but few will put it towards their retirement. There's absolutely nothing wrong with liquidating assets for life purchases (or even vanity projects (within reason)) rather than dutifully drawing down for one's twilight years.
Then comes tax.
No idea which exchange.
But his trading activity as far as I understand were on-average neutral (not net long or short). Though I think he also kept a bunch himself too.
So volume alone does not imply the exchange could absorb a large one-sided addition of sell orders without significant move in spot.
Also it's unclear if any of this volume is 'churning', by those with significant quantities of BTC happy to pay transaction fees to create a sense of false liquidity.
A large volume on an exchange means there's plenty of people trading, but it doesn't mean plenty of money going in or out.
I mean there are limits, so it's not like Satoshi could cash out in one go.
I've heard a story of one individual on a forum ordering someone two Papa John's online in return for another forum member sending them 10,000 bitcoin (or something like that) but I've never heard of people sending thousands of bitcoins to "occupy wall street" (who, exactly?) so they could buy pizzas. Where do you remember hearing that?
That was the famous bitcoin pizza (worth $120,000,000 as of this writing), and it is believed to be the first real-world purchase using bitcoins.
 Original thread: https://bitcointalk.org/?topic=137.0
 The pizzas: http://archive.is/a1IRg (archive link so we don't hug laszlo's servers to death.)
I'm not one for all that "if you bought $100 of bitcoin in 2013..." stuff, but wow, that first sentence...
Though I guess if he had 10,000 to blow like that, he probably had a lot more, and probably isn't short of a few now. (Hopefully anyway.)
I think I'd rather be someone who paid 10,000 for two pizzas though (which I assume was more or less the going rate in 2010), than being one of the people who didn't or couldn't take him up on the offer - two days later and nobody had done it.
We're building a great movie script here, one post at a time.
Yesterday I wanted to install bitcoin core... the blockchain is 153 GB and will eat CPU for days to validate everything. It's crazy. If I look at my early transaction history, I transferred mere euros around and they arrived and were confirmed in seconds/minutes. Unthinkable now. We need something else.
It's not crazy when you realize that you've verified that you own your coins and that the money supply is correct without having to trust anyone. And all you had to do was commit some disk space and CPU cycles.
> Unthinkable now. We need something else.
As soon as that "something else" becomes as popular as Bitcoin, it will suffer the same issues.
Why did you want to do that? Altruism? Just so that you could truthfully write this comment?
Bitcoin users don't have to do that.
The 2014 article you're citing uses this 2013 article  as a source. This uses data from bitcoinrichlist.com, which contains balances for all active bitcoin addresses at the time.
This sort of blockchain analysis isn't super useful, especially in 2017, because some extremely-rich people have funds in multiple addresses and some extremely-rich addresses contain funds for multiple people.
The richest bitcoin address in 2017 has 1.8B worth of bitcoin, but it's the cold storage address for hundreds of thousands of bitfinex users . It's possible that many of the other addresses on the richlist are coinbase vault addresses or cold storage addresses for other custodial wallets. The important part is that, with some publicly disclosed exceptions, we don't know if a rich address belongs to a single person or an organization.
Meanwhile, the poorest addresses contain UTXOs worth pennies that cost more in fees to send than they're worth. These addresses have been completely abandoned by their users and have no practical owner.
Even addresses with a spendable balance don't correspond to one user ever since Hierarchical Deterministic address generation has become the standard. HD wallets generate a new address for every incoming transaction for greater privacy . A typical user may have their funds spread over dozens of addresses.
That being said, I'm sure wealth is highly concentrated in the bitcoin ecosystem: it's just very hard to quantify to what degree it is.
Disclaimer: I hold bitcoin and some other cryptocurrencies.
edit: nvm you linked it second. that seems insanely risky to put it all in one address, right?
See how it starts with a 3? Most normal bitcoin addresses start with a 1. The 3 means that it's a pay to script hash address, which means that its likely a multisignature address.
Multisig addresses require multiple signatures to send funds. This could be two out of three possible signatures, seven out of seven possible signatures, fifty out of one hundred possible signatures, it all depends how it is configured.
In short though it kind of works like nuclear weapons where you need multiple keys help by different people to authenticate a transaction.
I've read a little about Tether, and that some of the others in this category have failed. Is it a difficult space because it needs some sort of regulation / management vs the decentralization that is promised by cryptocurrencies?
Currently tether is presumed to be manipulated by its maintainers.
Re: Tether - I had only came across that they were 'hacked'. Didn't know anything about fraud. Thanks for the link.
All versions of Bitcoin share the exploitative inverse log curve for distribution and work input.
Bitcoin cash further changed the difficulty algorithm to benefit ASIC miners during a very brief window of time. Fees are reduced, and bandwidth has increased but the same design flaws are shared from Satoshi's algorithm.
So you're completely incorrect.
Among the many problems of bitcoin as money, is the speculative aspect increases price volatility, which reduces utility as currency.
The bizarre thing to me is that bitcoin is a (less than) zero sum game. Meaning the funds for someone’s new Lambo came from others, who instead of having a new Lambo, or shirt, or food, now have “ownership” rights to a digital token.
I have a hard time believing that non-owners are going to be happy just handing over real wealth to those prescient enough to buy bitcoin.
On the other hand, the mania of speculative bubbles can drive insane valuations, ultimately resulting between transfers of wealth.
In the mortgage backed securities, the losses to the losers were so catastrophic, that they were socialized to a degree, and taxpayers wound up footing part of the bill.
If you think about that, that every loss for someone, is a win for someone else, the winners in the MBS game truly made out like bandits.
This bitcoin mania can run a long time, but the higher the price goes, the less likely it will be adopted for its ostensible purpose.
There are many other blockchain designs now, so Bitcoin is already obsolete.
Part of the problem with all the security around cryptocurrencies is that it can be really hard to keep access and not lose them. So many passwords, two-factor authorizations, Authy tied to phone numbers, etc. I am not using nearly as much security on my bitcoin stuff now. I think the risk of getting hacked is lower than the risk of me losing access.
That's why I use Google Authenticator. I don't want the seed kept (or even known) by a third party. I'll keep my own backup far, far away from any device which also can be used to recover account credentials.
Then of course the bytes had to be converted to addresses to check which one had the money (and if I found it) and then to WIF to import in Electrum. After half a day of stress I did numerous copies now.
UX on cryptocurrency software seems absolutely terrible even today--I've had countless problems trying to get my ethereum wallet working (still hasn't worked!)
>UX on cryptocurrency software seems absolutely terrible even today
I still have nightmares about multibit UX, it was horrible
In this system you can top up your hot wallet by specifying all transaction details and then scanning the QR with the half code to sign the transaction and send it off.
This would roughly as secure as some sort of 2FA method. The attacker needs to have both the phone compromised, and the paper with the half key compromised.
As was said elsewhere, a lot of this will come as the space matures.
You would need both halves to sign a transaction
At some point during the spend from the wallet, the privkey that matches the wallet pubkey has to touch memory. This privkey can in theory be compromised in a number of ways with malware on the spending system (keylogger, screen caps, process memdump, etc).
I think the safest way to go about this is to generate an entirely new keypair/wallet on an isolated system. Spend from your wallet then transfer the balance to the newly created wallet. This minimizes losses as a result of privkey compromise (unless of course your isolated system isn't so secure)
This has been developed. Search for multisig wallets, N-of-M, etc
I mean, what is there to develop? Take the wallet's private key, and run it through your favorite implementation. I'm not really sure what a bitcoin specific implementation would do! Just autoload it into your specific bitcoin client for you?
The chances of me messing something up and losing it forever is bigger then the chance of somebody actually steeling it.
It's actually really not all that difficult. There are lots of details, and understanding it all end to end is definitely a task most people will never do, but the issue is simply one of effort and motivation, not of fundamental difficulty.
The biggest challenge is understanding how all the pieces fit together, the pieces themselves aren't any kind of ground-breaking computer science.
Fiat incentivizes bailouts and devaluing poor people's savings by printing (or QE'ing) money into gigantic financial middle-men.
I've got some bad news about poverty for you, buddy
Currently I am considering Electrum but I have no idead if thats a smart choice. I do not require a GUI, but it should be maintained for a while (so a large user base should help).
Edit: this is the hardware version of storing cryptocurrencies.
I had the same problem of underpaying for the transaction because I had to sweep many small wallets.
There are many old wallets around which contain amounts too small to recover. Let's say you have 100 addresses each containing $1, it is no longer economical to sweep them into a single address.
Originally in 2011-2013 it was considered a good practice to create many different addresses for receiving.
I was actually referring — in jest, in case that wasn't clear — to the fact that the only content above the fold on this ultrawide display is a stretched image of Hong Kong.
> Four years ago, I was living in Hong Kong when a fellow journalist named Mike* and I decided to invest in bitcoin. I bought four while Mike went in for 40; I spent about $2,000 while he put in $15,000.
Invest? Really? That is called speculation with the amount of money you can afford to lose. If you were investing you would go all in and track the progress and protect the password.
> Most users only need one wallet, but MultiBit practically demands that you set up multiple. On top of this, it allows you to add multiple passwords to each wallet, even though these aren't required.
So it gets confusing fast. Then:
> I tracked down an old version of the now discontinued software and discovered that there were multiple ways to restore wallets using MultiBit
So you got links for the old version?
I was able to just save the wallet (as a .dat I believe) and then inspect it with a text editor. The contents were my private key and the date the wallet was created. I then used my private key and my address to import the wallet into a modern program.
Is HN now full of mega-millionaires, since the community is full of tech-savvy early adopters?
Raise your hand if you made over a million. Raise both hands if you've made over 10 million.
I mined (on a CPU) 100 BTC solo back when it was first released. They weren't worth even a $1 at that time. Here I am now and I doubt I even still have the hard drive that I mined them on and if I did have it I have formatted it many times over. Those BTC are lost for forever. Whenever I feel a pang of anger/guilt I just remind myself that I would have sold when BTC hit $8 if not even sooner than that and in some ways that would be worse than what really happened.
Most people talked about it, few did buy. But the feeling when you've bought and lost the ability to recover your wallet is even worse then not having bought some !
I actually did buy some, but lost my wallet, like so many
I know my adress, and the coins are still there, but I can't do anything about it, not idea where my backup wallet.dat is..
I mean, it's pretty tough to keep track of your digital assets for years, while your mind in thinking about work, friends ect..
If I had made a simple decision back then there's a good chance I'd never have to waste my life working again. I could have been freed by now, to live a life dedicated to whatever I wanted to do, whenever I wanted to do it.