The Blockchain vs the ISP

Headlines: Hijacking Bitcoin: Routing Attacks on Cryptocurrencies for fun and profit, by evil ISPs!  The bitcoin protocol does not seems to protect the network against routing attacks, which is created by concentration of hosts: 60 percent of Bitcoin traffic is visible to just three ISPs (as of mid-2017). As the bitcoin blockchain proof of work selects the sub-chains with the hardest proof of work, 60 percent concentration may just be enough to “outvote” the other 40% and initiate a very profitable branch of the ledger. The news does not seem to have any effects on the bitcoin index (so far…). The […]

Blockchain Quantum Threat

I recently attended a technology conference on Cybersecurity and Quantum Computing, hosted by University of Toronto, which left me wondering on what is about to happen to blockchain tech when quantum computing becomes a thing. I had some thoughts: Thought one: if anything can undo the blockchain immutability, quantum computing is the one thing to worry about. Bye Bye Immutability! Second thought: why is the NSA freaking about quantum computing? Third thought: What is going to happen to bitcoin?   I mused on this for a while, read some materials online (see links at the bottom), and realized I know […]

Youtube induced Bitcoinosis

(for the ones afflicted with a lack of sense of humour, the following is satire) It all started with this  video where Andreas Antonopoulos talked to the Canadian senate about bitcoin and blockchain regulation. After watching it I was left  wondering who was that nice individual, that knew so much about bitcoin and was able to talk about it calmly and in such a balanced manner.  That’s when I discovered Andreas Antonopoulos. To my surprise I found out Andreas was a fellow CISSP (yes, I know. A lot of you don’t care for certifications)  and the author of a book on […]

Blockchain and Patents

As I see it the blockchain is a gift to mankind by an unknown person (or persons) going by the name of  Satoshi Nakamoto. Nobody owns the cleverest idea since sliced bread, but  software patents could be the wrench-in-the-works.   That state of affairs wont last long. Here is a sample of opinions on what’s to come, some good some really bad. Here is what some have to say on this: Economist, Jan 12th 2017: A rush to patent the Blockchain is a sign of the technology’s promise. Financial firms and assorted start-ups are rushing to patent the technology that underlies bitcoin Reuters, March […]

What on a hash?!

I got this question from a friend (you know who you are) who has mined crypto goodies and just came to think about what those hashes are all about. So.. what is the deal with hashes? I am going to assume whoever is reading this has no idea what hashes are, which gives me freedom to explain it my way.  A bit on Hash Wikipedia (the source of all knowledge according to some, and the source of all ignorance according to others) has a very nice entry on what I should properly call Cryptographic Hashing Function (hashing algos in short). The wiki […]

Little Blockchain reading list

This is a follow up to my earlier post on Blockchain Concepts which I realized was not  very helpful (and pointed out by the group of blockchain enthusiasts I belong to).  The discussion on the mind map led to the idea of having baseline reading materials, online preferred, for blockchain knowledge. Given how vocal the group was I obliged and assembled a handy and potentially dated reading list which I offer to you. But first, some assumptions: I don’t know where you are on this knowledge ladder so I will assume the basics are to be covered. All of the listed materials […]

Blockchain Concepts – Map and Territory

I am in a group of “blockchain enthusiasts” and we started to talk about “levels” regarding knowledge of blockchain matters, so obviously I started to think about what those “levels” are. One approach is to depict the landscape in as much detail as possible and sort it there. Here is a Mind Map for the ones that process information visually (there are other preferences). I used FreeMind (this is not an endorsement) and produced something to share. I took advantage of the MindMap interactivity and added all sorts of links and notes, but unfortunately it only works on the mapping […]