01:52:36hulkhogan42o:via flooding, i believe
01:53:12hulkhogan42o:oh, that was hours ago.
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15:11:50dgenr8:the nature of the fork matters. no strong reason for users to switch to a fork with higher (or lower) block reward. OTOH a fork that somehow resulted in a structurally lower fee market would be attractive to users.
15:12:42sipa:lower fee, and lower security :)
15:12:47sipa:nothing is for free
15:13:42stonecoldpat:if the fee is too low, the miners just wont accept them, which would still be valid in that type of fork
15:18:48dgenr8:suppose there is a technology improvement that allows lower fees without reducing security.
15:19:13sipa:well someone has to pay for the security
15:19:26sipa:now, it is mostly subsidy that pays
15:19:31dgenr8:does someone have to pay for SHA256 being better than SHA1?
15:19:33sipa:over time... who knows
15:19:42sipa:i don't ghink you understand
15:20:16sipa:bitcoin solves a theoretically unsolvable problem... by making it economically inattractive to cheat
15:20:23sipa:but it does not really solve it
15:21:16dgenr8:you claim such an improvement is impossible, yes?
15:22:02sipa:there may be other solutions of course, that equally result in a useful digital payment system
15:22:10sipa:but it will have different tradeoffs
15:22:19sipa:so you can't call it a strict improvement
15:22:37dgenr8:you claim a strict improvement is impossible.
15:23:17adam3us:dgenr8: so at some point i had a go at working out if you could do make a secure offline ecash system if you had fully homomorphic encryption. the answer seemed to be no. you could do it with trusted hardware, but then you have to trust the hardware maker so it still fails.
15:23:37dgenr8:so that's one thing that didn't work ;)
15:46:49dgenr8:different example. suppose a new opcode satisfies some enormous social need. a bitcoin fork is published, and 60% of hashing adopt it one day. still irrelevant?
15:47:44sipa:but if it satisfies enormous social need, probably non miners will adopt it too
15:47:56sipa:which matters
15:48:04dgenr8:thats what I mean
15:48:26sipa:but the miners adopting it per se is not relevant
15:48:44sipa:what matters is that people who *use* bitcoin validation choose to upgrade
15:50:24sipa:if they do, miners are forced to upgrade too
15:50:37sipa:if they don't, then miners upgrading has no effect
15:51:13sipa:the point is that miners opinion about it is not more rekevant than anyone else's opinion
15:51:24sipa:while it is for a softfork
15:53:12stonecoldpat:dgenr8: one way i've been thinking about it recently, miners basically own the means of production, their workers are machine and they are producing something that the general population want. (so means of production/workers/general population) - if the means of production produce something that nobody likes, then the general population will just ignore it. So it is in the means of
15:53:12stonecoldpat:productions interests to produce something that the people want - but only if they are making profit.
15:53:58sipa:miners produce something that satisfies the constraints the full node network demands
15:54:19sipa:if the demands change, miners either upgrade or become irrelevant (this is a hardfork)
15:54:44sipa:miners of course can choose to enforce extra constraints on top of this (this is a softfork)
15:56:22dgenr8:in the example, users might decide to switch after they see what the miners have done
15:56:43sipa:miners don't "do" anything
15:56:59sipa:the validation rules enforced by miners have no effect
15:57:07sipa:unless full nodes adopt them too
15:57:24sipa:as you can't security rely on them being encofrced otherwise
15:57:29dgenr8:accepting a new opcode is doing something
15:57:50dgenr8:i don't claim rational miners would do things this way though. it's just a hypothetical.
15:58:07sipa:if they do that now, without full node support, miners leave the consensus!
15:58:28sipa:they cannot just start accepting a new opcode without making their blocks invalid
15:58:41Taek:I thought new opcodes were soft forks?
15:58:56sipa:if they are refinements of nops, yes
15:59:10sipa:in which case everything dgenr8 says is true
15:59:59sipa:but the orinal discussion was about whether or not miner support matters for a hardfork
16:00:11sipa:so i assume he was talking about a hardfork change
16:01:48dgenr8:i was, and i agree it is not rational for miners. but if it were done, users have a choice: stay on 40% for without whizbang feature, or switch
16:02:22sipa:dgenr8: they have that chojce whether miners adopt it or not!
16:02:50sipa:if there are suddenly full nodes that fork off and introduce a new opcode, users can already choose which fork to use
16:03:08sipa:each fork will have 100% miner support from its own perspective
16:03:18sipa:as the blocks produced by the other miners do not count
16:03:48Taek:I do imagine that people would be more likely to switch to a new hardfork if that hardfork had more mining power
16:04:20dgenr8:more secure. global hash power is a scarce resource
16:04:25Taek:it's reasurring, and to the common person seems more secure
16:04:43Taek:also makes them more confident that everyone is doing it
16:04:49sipa:full node security is far stronger than the little power that mindrs have
16:05:10Taek:right but that's not how the average Bitcoin user understands it
16:05:20sipa:say tomorrow bitpay, coinbase and bitgo announce they will switch to a new fork
16:05:24sipa:which miners hate
16:05:29sipa:what would happen?
16:05:48Taek:/r/bitcoin would explode
16:05:53sipa:yes :p
16:06:07sipa:and likely bitcoin would be dead, due to lack of trust
16:06:29sipa:but assume people accept this... they would switch along
16:06:39sipa:and miners not switching would be totally irrelevant
16:06:49Taek:that's true
16:06:59sipa:it won't take long for some miners to pop up on the new chain
16:07:08sipa:and the difficulty would adapt to them
16:08:10sipa:if people already follow miner majority, they can just all run spv nodes
16:08:18sipa:and full nodes would be irrelevant
16:08:28sipa:much cheaper
16:08:36Taek:but if coinbase, bitpay, and bitgo all announced a hard fork, AND 70% of the mining power supported the hardfork, there would probably be less resistance.
16:08:43Taek:/r/bitcoin would still explode
16:08:44sipa:of course
16:08:56sipa:in practice, there is s huge incentive for compromise
16:09:17sipa:but still, in establishing that compromise, miners do not have a privileged position
16:09:21sipa:economic power does
16:10:11sipa:miners matter, as they are part of the ecosystem
16:10:27sipa:but, other than for a softfork, they are not the only ones who.matter
16:10:41sipa:and there is no reason to base decisions on % hashrate
16:12:33dgenr8:my point is not that miners are privileged. it is that innovations will have an effect regardless of the particulars of how they are introduced
16:12:49sipa:of course, no disagreement there
16:27:33dgenr8:sipa: would you be concerned to learn of the existence of a dark hashpower block, say 300% the size of live bitcoin mining?
16:28:20dgenr8:isn't that the same thing as living on a fork with 25% hashpower?
16:28:24sipa:but as much as being concerned that users would switch to the full node software that hashpower uses
16:28:25petertodd:dgenr8: +1
16:28:39sipa:but not as much
16:29:01sipa:yes, it is identical
16:29:35sipa:but you're suggesting that is enough reason to switch to that fork
16:29:47kanzure:it is enough reason to suspect those miners might attack your fork
16:29:47sipa:which is disagree very strongly with
16:30:31sipa:it works the other way too: if miners know that users would not switch to their fork, they will have less incentive to start the fork in the first place
16:30:47petertodd:a very realistic possibility here is if the next reward halving reduces profitability to the point where mining is untenable - suppose the economic majority decides to go with a still-deflationary reward schedule to fix the issue, and the hashing power decides to go with 25BTC/block forever - there's a very high chance that the hashing power will get their way
16:31:39petertodd:it's a case where doing nothing will lead to bitcoin being destroyed anyway, so miners don't acrually have a strong downside - users might as well go with the fork that's secure
16:32:34sipa:petertodd: so you're saying full nodes don't actually have a say about what rules the network ends up using?
16:32:39sipa:that is very sad
16:32:52sipa:it's not black and white of course
16:33:05petertodd:sipa: that's exactly what I'm saying - or to be exact, of course they have a say, but it's not a black-and-white say like many people portray it as
16:33:15sipa:fair enough, i agree
16:33:26sipa:the incentive for compromise is huge
16:33:39sipa:and miners have a say in what that compromise ends up being
16:33:46sipa:but they're not the only ones
16:33:57petertodd:miners definitely hold a disproportiate amount of power in the bitcoin system, and they definitely can force changes through - albeit at risk to them. point is, the risk is disproportionately bourn by al users, rather than just miners
16:34:53petertodd:another problem, is that mining has a built-in way to co-ordinate actions - user's *don't* have a clear way to coordinate actions
16:35:12petertodd:(or at least, they don't have any methods that miners don't - miners can organisee on reddit too)
16:35:38sipa:how do you mean, the CEO of Bitcoin decides?
16:36:02petertodd:I mean, miners can prove consent to changes with hashing power - users can't
16:36:18sipa:they csn indicate consent
16:36:24sipa:they can't prove consent
16:36:33petertodd:consent != they will actually accept :)
16:36:38sipa:right, ok
16:36:54sipa:users can too, by putting a vote in transactions!
16:37:00sipa:.... which miners can censor
16:37:25sipa:but then again, a miner majority can censor other miners too
16:37:26petertodd:exactly - the only solid publication medium available is the blockchain; everything else is fuzzy social consensus
16:37:29cfields_:users choose to deal with vendors/exchangers who back their horse
16:37:59petertodd:equally, proof-of-stake sort-of works, but has severe problems in practice, like unavailability of cold storage
16:38:05cfields_:(claim to, anyway)
16:38:08petertodd:cfields_: yes, but they can't prove that
16:38:35kanzure:the problem is more like, "even if users decide to ignore a certain fork because of consensus reasons, those miners can still provide hashrate to attack your consensus-unchanged network" because you can't filter out certain miners really
16:39:23kanzure:(and filtering out miners would be bad, anyway)
16:39:26petertodd:kanzure: better yet, miners could choose to switch to a fork that required you to prove you tried to attack the original as part of the mining process
16:39:38sipa:availability of hashpower not on your fork affects your means of judging your chdin's security
16:39:48sipa:petertodd: ugh!
16:40:28petertodd:sipa: heh
16:40:38kanzure:is there some sort of merge-mining help here
16:40:59sipa:merge-mining is just mining with 0 marginal cos
16:41:03petertodd:sipa: nor do you really need something that fancy if you have 95% miner opposittion to a change anyway - getting 5% from the 95% to attack the original is unlikely to be hard
16:41:27petertodd:kanzure: the proof you tried to attack the original would be implemented *with* merge-mining
16:42:09kanzure:alright the only solution i could think of is that satoshi arises from the grave and sells all of his bitcoin on the alternate fork
16:42:17kanzure:wait, that's not a solution. hm.
16:43:40kanzure:there's really no way to opt out of consensus changes like that
16:43:57petertodd:kanzure: sure there is! hav the Bitcoin Foundation sign blocks
16:44:18kanzure:even though the naive solution ("keep running your old consensus code") looks like an answer, it really isn't
16:44:33petertodd:kanzure: and in the case of SPV clients, it definitely isn't
16:44:41dgenr8:halvings are not an incentive problem as long as BTC keeps getting more valuable at a faster rate than the halvings. so we think about making it better, and making it better adopted
16:44:43kanzure:because if you have 0.1% hashrate then you'll just be reorged to infinity for a while
16:44:49petertodd:kanzure: pruning is fun too, if people start trusting UTXO commitments for old history...
16:45:31kanzure:i suppose one solace is that an attacker can't attack all possible forks at the same time
16:45:44stonecoldpat:assuming 95% miners did switch, and the population did not, even with the attacks - the currency would probably be dead anyway
16:45:45sipa:kanzure: except pos :)
16:45:55stonecoldpat:i dont think there would be a fix
16:45:56kanzure:so as long as the absolute number of attacks he has to participate in is greater than the amount of hashrate he has available to throw at the problem while also mining on his evil fokr, then the originals win
16:46:12sipa:stonecoldpat: indeed, it would mean consensus has failed
16:46:12kanzure:for example, he can't commit 0.1% a million times over to a million different chains to reorg-attack 'em
16:46:28kanzure:especially if he is busy trying to secure his own evil consensus fork
16:46:56petertodd:stonecoldpat: exactly my point. Miners have the choice to either go along with what the economic majority wants, or not, and option #2 always results in them either winning, or Bitcoin itself being destroyed. (so long as they stick to option #2!)
16:47:21kanzure:i agree that getting proofs from others about their participatin in attacks is likely to be problematic, but not when you consider the large number of forks that can arise compared to the amount of hashpower that the colluding group can muster
16:48:26petertodd:the economic majorities power is limited to trying to encourage miners by paying them - if they aren't paying enough miners have every reason to stick to a fork that's best for them and hope the economic majority gives in and starts paying them again
16:48:48kanzure:another thing that would help is if the mining incentives reset on the ones that are being potentially-attaced, so that low-scale miners could be incentivized to show up with the promise of bitcoin
16:48:55petertodd:hell, this all looks kinda like standard union negotiation scenarios...
16:48:58kanzure:but the 2 week lag or whatever is maybe problematic for that sort of incentive
16:49:43kanzure:petertodd: it's not just a majority hashchain vs minority hashchain, there will be many minority chains that might cumulatively add up to greater than the majority hashrate chain (possibly evil consensus chain).
16:50:21petertodd:kanzure: **will* be? in what scenario?
16:50:24kanzure:as long as the evil hashrate chain miner can't just switch to every existing alternative and insta-mine 1 billion blocks, i think an evil consensus attack will fail
16:51:47petertodd:kanzure: in my block reward scedule example it's highly likely there are just three forks - original, economic majority, and hashing power majority
16:52:04kanzure:the scenario was "a majority of hashrate is accumulated to mine on some fork that has invalid consensus rules, users are told to switch over, businesses switch because their partners have already switched, etc." and "it may be difficult to continue running with the actual rules since the majority hashrate can switch to your blockchain and pummel you" (and my above comments are explaining why this isn't as drastic as onen might thik)
16:52:37kanzure:hm why only 3 though. wouldn't everyone want to jump on board and try their hand at an original-rules fork to get their hands on some sweet mining rewards?
16:52:54petertodd:kanzure: because in that example the original rules aren't profitable
16:53:11kanzure:i'm not sure i buy that :-)
16:53:27petertodd:kanzure: we're looking at original, 12.5BTC/block, econ majority, say, 20BTC/block, declining every two years, and miner majority, 25BTC/block
16:53:35petertodd:*25BTC/block forever
16:53:39kanzure:i mean, sure, okay they switch to some other non-original rules but my point was "something other than the evil-consensus-rules"
16:54:15petertodd:don't use the word "evil" here - from the miners point of ivew, 25BTC/block forever is the right solution, economic majority thinks their version is right
16:54:52kanzure:evil does not mean wrong
16:55:17petertodd:* petertodd rolls eyes
16:55:26kanzure:but really, bbl
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