The Brokenness of MaidSafe

Sometimes, you gotta feel for the idealists in this space. Their relentless optimism is matched only by their blind naivety. On one hand, you understand where they’re coming from,i and on the other hand, you want to crack some eggsii and set them straight.

As is typical of logic derived from the “sharing economy,”iii MaidSafe aims to monetize excess hard drive and CPU capacity and decentralize encrypted storage. To fund this, the MaidSafe Foundation is issuing SafeCoin on the Mastercoin protocol, which is itself built on top of the Bitcoin protocol.iv While it’s understandable why someone would want to monetize some kinds of unused capacity, why this should be applied to your hard drive is beyond me. For one, if a person is looking for convenient and “trusted” cloud storage, they’re going to go with Google Drive and Dropbox every time. Maybe Mega. Maybe. Secondly, people who prioritize security over convenience aren’t going to trust a bunch of non-WoT coders to be even minimally competent with their data any more they’re going to trust the guy at the mall who claims to be a wallet inspector. Digital security, like physical security, means trusting as few people as possible and selecting those people very, very carefully. On the digital side, it also means using old hardware and software instead of shiny new stuff.

Still, let’s have some fun by dropping in on a Google Groups conversation v between MaidSafe “developers” Nick Lambert, David Irvine, a few of their sockpuppets, and potential “investor” John Kypri.

John: I don’t see why your accepting them when you could just accept Bitcoin on it’s own with a much higher trading volume, It’s unfair on investors that our stakes will be diluted by stakes bought with mastercoin which has yet to come to market let alone find it’s true value.

DavidT: mastercoin is needed to conduct any business using the Mastercoin protocol, so you should feel lucky already that some “third party” (with big pocket of msc, and of course we all know who that is) is willing to make the process of converting btc –>msc —>maidsafecoin seemlessly.
Ya, don’t complain! Feel lucky! At least until we can find a way to extract a few more bucks from you…
John: Most people having hung on to mastercoins they can’t sell due to low volume/tanking the price will be pouring money into this opportunity. I just can’t see how its mutually beneficial or rational.
DavidT: because the protocol is going under heavy development, once people realise that they need msc to conduct business using the protocol, trading volume will go up, and the low volume can also be partly explained by the fact that “smart contract” ,being the 2nd working feature of the protocol, is only officially live on 22nd of this month.
“Trading volume will go up.” Didn’t we talk about using the word “will” before? That’s right, we did. Oh, and of course smart contracts.
John: You are clearly giving them enough by pouring $10m usd into their early-days startup without buying up most of their pre-mined currency, alleviating any risk from them and taking it on board yourselves.
DavidT: we dont call it “pre-mined”, dont you realise that the cryptocurrency world is taking a transition into non-mining phase?, because mining is a waste of electricity. thats too much a price being paid for security.
God, “pre-mined?” Why you gotta be such a potty mouth? If I was your mother I’d wash your mouth out with soap!
John: Since the initial burn period Mastercoin has given a hefty and pretty consistent loss to “investors”, I’m concerned as a prospective investor of Safecoin we’ll be taking on this legacy.
DavidT: mastercoin “creation” didnt involve any burning, i think u mistake it for Counterparty (XCP).
Jeez, more of the dumb questions from Mr. Dummypants. Why do I even bother? Oh right, the money…
John: While Mastercoin has failed to produce a finished product in 8 months of development, it’s being overtaken by other bitcoin 2.0 start-ups in what’s becoming a very competitive space.
DavidT: a working decentralised exchange went live more than a month ago. it is more usable than counterparty i would concede, at least the order book didnt get stuffed up ..
Where does an investor/giver-of-free-monies get off thinking that a dilapidated decentralized exchange is insufficient proof? Looks like John is starting to notice a pattern with the 2.0 “start-ups.”
John: I don’t see what incentive is left for the Mastercoin Dev’s to keep working once they’ve “exchanged” with you especially given the issues with the lead bitcoin devs trying to block them off what they see as malicious use/spamming of the blockchain.
DavidT: mastercoin devs have back up plans. i believe it’s like a chasing game, bitcoin core devs and parasite protocols devs chase each other in circle.
We have plans! And a Foundation!vi  Not to worry!
John: Perhaps I’m overreacting would be interest to hear other peoples views on how this makes business sense?
DavidT: i guess yes you are making a fuzz unnecessarily. and asking nicely and calmly or doing more research may get you more info i reckon.
Ya John, it’s all in your head! You just need a glass of wine and a comfy bed and you’ll be right as rain.
John: Especially from the Safe team and any of these large investors that might be reading.
DavidT: define “large” .

Ya, we those “groups” and “individuals” would like to stay anonymous. So stop asking about them. Now.

Later, and rightly, John continued:

I’ve got a strong gut feeling like theirs some really seedy business going on here to cash out a serious volume of Mastercoin or your business has been manipulated/is naive about whats going on.

Then Irvine chimed in:

I figure MSC will increase in value as it finds a use, other will not and that is fine. We do need such a market to figure where value lies and none of us really know in advance. I hear you and your comments and that is fine. Others will think differently and that is also OK, I do appreciate you are trying to look out for the community here and thanks for that.

Of course we don’t need a market to determine where value lies, we can use our feelings! Oh, and the community. Always rely on and protect the community.

I should have added, we did this to ensure the foundation did not hold cash as that would create accounting issues. If it holds the tokens then it’s up to the recipients to do cash conversions and pay the relevant tax etc. That way the foundation can act as a separate entity with charitable models in place and not be subject to any accounting issues that would arise from fiat transfers and holdings (Scottish Charity law is extremely tough and rightly so). This would not have been fair on the trustees there and would mean an extra layer of bureaucracy for them.

Oooh “accounting issues.” Sounds complex. Scary even. Ok, that’s all I can take…

That MaidSafe is one of the very few ways for people to get their useless Mastercoins out of that pre-mined hell hole, it’s sure to attract more attention before imploding, despite Safecoins being destined to be just as useless. That the MaidSafe idea itself is so horribly broken is almost besides the point compared to its breathtakingly malicious implementation. This Safe is badly broken.

Lest we forget that there’s Bitcoin and there’s Bitcoin, so let’s take the time to understand it before we run on to the next thing.

Our future selves will thank us for it.

___ ___ ___ 

  1. That is, more money than time, leading to frivolous “investments” while foregoing due diligence. More time than money, on the other hand, lead to such culinary wonders as curries and perogies. []
  2. Charlie: Look, the girl, she wears a Lance Armstrong bracelet, OK? So I tell you I have cancer, right? Then you’re gonna tell her, she’s going to feel sorry for me, we’re going to start dating, and that’s the way the lie works!
    Dennis: That’s a horrible thing to do!
    Charlie: Well, I’m a bad guy then!
    Dennis: You are a bad guy! You lied to us!
    Charlie: All right look at this, sometimes you’ve got to crack a few eggs to make an omelet.
    Dennis: You’ve got to crack a couple eggs to make an omelet?
    Charlie: Yeah, you gotta crack an egg.
    Dennis: So you’re throwing down life lessons now?
    Charlie: I’m throwing down eggs!
    Dennis: Class is in session, the teacher’s teaching class now!
    Charlie: I’m cracking eggs of wisdom!

    From It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Season 1, Episode 4: Charlie Has Cancer. []

  3. The “sharing economy”, as near as I can tell, appears to be a euphemism for 21st century feudal copyhold, wherein proles never own anything. This isn’t a bad thing at all and is in many ways superior to the consumerist socialism currently employed. More renting/sharing = less buying = less environmental degradation. The downside of the “sharing economy,” at least in the short term, is that it does nothing to address the sense of entitlement of material well-being and it reduces the sense of ownership and the skills needed to function in the world. Why fix your squeaky bicycle brakes when you’re only renting it? Why understand how anything works when you can make it someone else’s problem? Perhaps this will be remedied over time. []
  4. Bitcoin 2.0 styles! []
  5. GG is where exactly zero serious development talk happens. Devlopment is on IRC. Scamming, apparently, is on GG. []
  6. David Irvine: “The funds raised will go to the [MaidSafe] foundation. Some used to fund core dev for three years, some to seed the network some to create dev pods. BitAngels loan MSC to make this happen (great for them to do this)”…”The foundation et all is explained in the papers and the site and in hundreds of posts. Why do you think MaidSafe gets all the funds you have read the papers (btw if it did I imagine nearly nobody would have an issue with that, MaidSafe have went way past a respectable stance here)? MaidSafe gets none of the funding directly and there are no founders shares, core dev will get funded for three years (MaidSafe) though. I think this is explained and you seem to be saying you understand that part.” Irvine’s tone is classic scammer shit: making people feel stupid for not investing. Making people feel stupid for investing is quite a different story. That’s just education. []

76 thoughts on “The Brokenness of MaidSafe

  1. Nick Lambert says:

    Hi Peter,

    There are a few fundamental errors early on in your post. MaidSafe is not built on the master protocol, it’s a new network utilising entirely it’s own infrastructure. The following links provide a high level overview: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RdGH40oUVDY and http://maidsafe.net/distributed-network-features.

    MaidSafe are utilising the Master protocol’s smart property feature to manage the issuance of our own crypto currency, safecoins. Our Proof of Resource model is explained in section 3: https://github.com/maidsafe/Whitepapers/blob/master/Project-Safe.md.

    The network is capable of way more than just storage, it is a data network that can provide all the services that currently exist on the Internet today without the need for data centres and large technology companies who provide ‘free’ services in order that they mine your data. So, much in the same way that bitcoin facilitates trade by removing middle men, such as banks and financial institutions, MaidSafe does the same thing for data. In removing these middlemen and utilising the SAFE network, third party developers will create applications that will enable all internet users to store, send and share data free of charge.

    The SAFE project is Open Source and open development and our libraries can be seen here: https://github.com/maidsafe. Having reviewed this it would be helpful if you could articulate specifically what part of our technology is broken, we would be more than happy to listen.

    • Bitcoin Pete says:

      Hi Nick,

      Thank you for taking the time to point out the factual errors relating to the differences between the service and the coin. The article’s contents have been updated accordingly. The title was also updated to reflect the points below.

      As to the brokenness of MaidSafe’s technology, that’s yet to be seen because it doesn’t really exist. All you have is a YouTube video, some “open-source” code no one’s implemented, and a funding drive. As to the brokenness of the ideas you’re proposing, there are several:

      1. If it’s just “you, the machine, and the software,” there are most certainly third parties involved. I would direct you to Nick Szabo for more on this point.

      2. Saying that “self-authentication” puts users “100% in control of their own destiny” while subjecting user hardware to unknown data streams is akin to saying that bunker busters put jihadis “100% in control of their own destiny.” You must be joking.

      3. Trying to fix a problem that few people find broken and even fewer people care to fix, that is, the cost and efficiency of the modern internet, is probably not the best fight to fight. In the unlikely even that you even develop anything substantial, 99.9% of internet users will find little incentive to switch.

      4. It’s clear that despite 7 years of talking, you haven’t found anyone meaningful to sponsor your efforts, not even the VC dorks in SV. Now, you’re preying upon bitcoin-owning idealist from whom you need never worry of recourse. This is easily the most shameful aspect of your efforts.

      5. Any “whitepaper” that uses the word “fresh,” includes references to Google Hangouts, and includes a “brief history” of the exact organization it’s ostensibly proposing isn’t a whitepaper at all and should promptly be binned.

      The extent of MaidSafe’s problems are clear to anyone doing their due fucking diligence. It’s also now clear to me that MaidSafe’s problems are their own, not necessarily Mastercoin’s, though your relationship with them leaves much to be desired and people crazy enough to give you money have every right to be suspicious.

      The SAFEst thing for Bitcoiners to do is keep their coins, back-up their hard drives, and encrypt their important files using PGP/GPG. The SAFEst thing for you to do is to find a VC or go back to the drawing board.

    • GreedyPete says:

      “The SAFEst thing for Bitcoiners to do is keep their coins”

      Enough said. You are biased. You want Bitcoin to succeed because you have invested in it. If you think they are trying to solve a problem that few people find broken then you are very ignorant. Why did you write an article about it?

      Of course they haven’t found any real investors. It’s a disruptive technology, it’s open-source, there is no money to be made (or at least there is no intention), why would any company invest in it? Maidsafe is for the people. Bitcoin was for the people, but it has been polluted by greedy people like you. Look at yourself. It’s sad.

    • Bitcoin Pete says:

      Hi Greedy,

      If MaidSafe wasn’t trying to make money, which it’s pretty much the exact opposite of everything they’ve publicly said so far, they’d have done a fundraising drive with no sale of “equity.” Instead, because they’re preying upon the greed of “investors” like yourself, people who wrap themselves in the cloth of “the people,” they went for a sham of an IPO that was largely designed to provide an out for Mastercoin owners and so they could set up another fucking “Foundation.”

      Bitcoin is for the people who make a difference in the world, largely those standing on the shoulders of giants. It’s certainly not for everyone. That’s kinda the point. So enjoy your BitShares, SafeCoins, Ethereumadingdongs, and the rest of them. As one of “the people,” you deserve nothing less.

    • John Kypri says:

      Brilliant Bitcoin Pete you’re a legend! I thought the world was going mad!

      The sad thing is it’s the less tech savy rather than the mastercoiners who’ll get stung when this implodes.

      The fact it hasn’t already shows a real lack of understanding by the majority participants.

  2. Nick Jachelson says:

    Another good write up, Pete! But honestly I don’t think anybody knows or cares much about these guys so they will be irrelevant before they do too much damage. I’m much more concerned about Ethereum where even people formerly respected in the “Bitcoin community” are going around and pumping the thing. Probably they were paid off with a share of the premine.

  3. Anonymous Coward says:

    Much like in http://bitcoinpete.com/2014/bitgo-multisig-a-stranger-his-friend-and-you/, you have a history of misunderstanding a technology – seriously, how can you have missed the errors about BitGo if you read the info even superficially?

    The fact that you need to be factually corrected this often shows you care more about inflammatory remarks and less about the accuracy of what you write. Which puts your posts in the same category as those whom, at times rightfully so, you ridicule.

    • Bitcoin Pete says:

      Anonymous Coward,

      There’s a difference between misunderstanding the promises of a technology and not being clear on the obscure crowdfunding model of said technology.

      As to my remarks in general, they’re intended to raise skepticism. So far, so good.

  4. The original MSC raise was at a price of .01 BTC, when BTC was under or around $100, so 8-10 bucks per coin, now trading with support at .071 BTC at just under $500, so about $35 USD.

    That’s a pretty nice return, yes people who paid more later are now underwater, but that’s how it goes when something goes up 30x in BTC which has itself gone up 15x in fiat.

    We’re going to make a market in BTC/MSC and get the bid-ask spread to consistent levels while limiting both upside and downside volatility.

    • My mistake, the original IPO price of MSC was about $1, not $10, so currently up 35x in dollars.

    • Bitcoin Pete says:

      The magnitude of that “return” is spurious when there’s essentially no trading volume to speak of. There was less than 500 Mastercoins traded on MasterXchange in the last 24 hours, less than $20,000 worth. With millions of Mastercoins burning holes in “investors'” pockets, it’s no wonder $6M worth flowed so freely into another dubious coin.

      https://masterxchange.com/market.php?currency=msc

      The MaidSafeCoin relationship was clearly created to offload Mastercoins without dumping the latter’s price. Not a bad move if you have Mastercoins, but hardly a testament to their value.

    • Tom says:

      Pete,

      It’s hard to take you seriously when you say things like “With millions of Mastercoins burning holes in “investors’” pockets”.

      There are about 600,000 total mastercoins in existence. check coinmarketcap.com.

      Not defending Mastercoin here, but if your going to trash something, don’t use made up nonsense to prove your point.

    • Bitcoin Pete says:

      Tom,

      There’s a baby, its bathwater, and Mastercoin. Let’s just throw out the latter two.

      And to the extent that Mastercoins are divisible to a few decimal points, though I’m unfamiliar with the name for its subunit, there are several million of these base things.

    • John Kypri says:

      And the crowd source target of $10million required 20% of all in existence to be purchasable on the free market bahahahaha!!

      If they didn’t move the price from 0.06 to 0.2 this ridiculous system would have required 68%.

      If the price had dropped a bit they would of had to drop their fundraising target a bit and hope (?) to buy all the mastercoin in existence!!

      https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=558012.320

      (scroll down to table at bottom of page)

  5. pankkake says:

    > As to the brokenness of MaidSafe’s technology, that’s yet to be seen because it doesn’t really exist

    As a “technical” person, it’s the only thing I care about.

    Sure, issuing a coin or a fundraising right away is highly suspicious. But the real issue is much simpler.

    Decentralized, secure, reliable storage is incredibly hard. It’s hard when you have cooperative nodes. When you want to do that in a trustless setting, you show something, or at least some credentials. All I see is a website with incredible claims, some of them being marketing bullshit (“We differ from many of the organisations and products in our space as we have the decentralized Internet at the core of our design” is a lie, “no servers” too, etc.)

    The other issue is going to be economic. If it ever works, is it going to be reasonably competitive with other solutions? Decentralized storage does not offer that many advantages, especially if you do client-side encryption.

    At least it’s less ridiculous than BitCloud’s “proof of bandwidth”.

    • Bitcoin Pete says:

      It’s also less ridiculous than proof of steak, proof of potatoes, and proof of gravy. Anyhoo, thank you for your technical perspective!

    • work2heat says:

      It may be the case that until we can produce signatures with arbitrarily long private keys (so that I can use data+private_key to produce a signature that proves I have some data), we will not solve the distributed hosting problem. But maidsafe’s model is at least an interesting step in an important direction. And they appear to have introduced a number of useful innovations, including a reliable UDP and improvements to Kademlia, as well as Proof of Resource, though I contend that there is certainly not sufficient technical specifications for these innovations to be adequately reviewed by the community. MaidSafe, a yellow paper (with detailed technical spec) would be much appreciated…

    • Bitcoin Pete says:

      A spec would be the least one’d expect… Baring that, it’s a lot of money being asked for a lot of hot air.

  6. […] Sometimes, you gotta feel for the idealists in this space. Their relentless optimism is matched only by their blind naivety. On one hand, you understand where they're coming from, ((That is, more m…  […]

  7. John Kypri says:

    re-reading the points you’ve highlighted above I think an important point that goes over a lot of peoples heads but clearly shows why this is so scammy. There seems to be a misconception that you need MSC to conduct business using the protocol.

    As anyone with a basic understanding of this system will realise if Maidsafe posted a Bitcoin address for the fundraiser, the blockchain would keep a public ledger of all the funds received so tokens could have simply been sent out pro rata.

    I dread to think what the answers would have been if prospective investors got as far as asking about why you need $10 million, where it’s going or pointing out that it was impossible to raise the full amount unless bit angels lent 20% of all Mastercoin in existence to make this convoluted nonsense system of asset issuance work!!

    • Bitcoin Pete says:

      The unscrupulousness of BitAngels just goes to show how fucking stupid the VC money in Bitcoin is. These SVers are way too used to having the USG prop up their advertising platforms. Thankfully, there’s no room for their strategy here. Their days are numbered. Same goes for the “2.0” scams they pump.

  8. Whatkunt says:

    Where do you live so i can knock your ego ignorant ass out.

    You pathetic fuck, disrespecting 8 years of hard work because its not up to your standards?

  9. […] with MaidSafe, for your enlightenment and entertainment, let’s tackle this one head-on. From […]

  10. work2heat says:

    Hey BitcoinPete, I can only imagine you loathe ethereum. Please do tell!

  11. […] for keeping their laptops running while they sleep, which also explains their fascination with MaidSafe. Sorry kids, that was 4 years ago now and it was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Let’s move […]

  12. InternetTroll says:

    Dear BitcoinPete,

    You’re an uninformed “asshole” ranting till other assholes
    “agree” with all of your “valid points”. notice my meaningless quotations?
    Yeah you’re fucking retarded.

    • Bitcoin Pete says:

      InternetTroll,

      I’m not the one who got stuck with a bunch of fucking useless Mastercoins. BitAngels played you for a fool.

      And other people agree with me? Hey, maybe they’ve got a shot after all.

  13. […] And that’s it. Litecoin lost the marketing as well as the technical battle. It isn’t the silver to Bitcoin’s anything. It’s just another scamcoin that had its moment in the sun and will now be relegated to the history books next to Keisercoin, Auroracoin, and MaidSafeCoin. […]

  14. […] projects are taken seriously when they haven’t resolved basic issues, regarding exchanges, storage, etc. The scamvelopers behind it are quick to profit from it, while they do not have to show any […]

  15. Jim says:

    “is looking for convenient and “trusted” cloud storage, they’re going to go with Google Drive and Dropbox every time…”

    Condoleezza Rice joins board of dropbox…

    http://www.newstatesman.com/future-proof/2014/04/dropbox-users-are-angry-nsa-loving-condoleezza-rice-has-been-appointed-its

    Mmm… trusted warmongers. You sack

  16. […] guess that makes MaidSafe, Dark Wallet, and the Mycelium “Entropy” as sane as potato salad. […]

  17. […] this is at all reminiscent of BitAngels with Mastercoin and those other fucktards with MaidSafeCoin, it should be. This is the exact same wallet inspector schtick. “Trust us now, bother us […]

  18. […] an effective parent, that is, raising kids without the braindamage of CoinDeskers, Ethereumers, and MaidSafers, is far tougher for everyone involved than that either A) Spreading seed, or B) Hiring a tax […]

  19. exapted says:

    MaidSafe is still part vaporware, but if successful I think it would solve many problems that people care about. Because it would be a generic p2p network, it could replace many other p2p networks. That would be ideal for anonymity, because with a larger userbase mixing and other anonymity features would work better. If they get it running and if they work on anonymity they could support an anomymity network much better than Tor or i2p. Also, the entire network would be practically censorship resistant. There’s a lot of ifs, but there’s no doubt that they are trying to solve some huge problems.

    • Pete Dushenski says:

      exapted,

      If… if… if…

    • eatyourhat says:

      If MaidSafe is launched and they deliver a funcional network as promised, you better make a video eating a hat.
      And I’ll be laughing all the way to the bank.

    • Pete Dushenski says:

      eatyourhat,

      That you think you’re getting rich off anything, anywhere, anytime is as likely as the sun rising in the west. If you think MaidSafe is your ticket, I’ve got a bridge or two with your name on them.

      MaidSafe launching its “funcional” network early isn’t impossible though, particularly as its brand of “funcional” is, y’know, so completely broken. But this point, even granted, has little to do with my primary criticism noted above, which was directed largely at their funding scam and their insalubrious relationship with the BitAngels derps.

      But hey, you’re clearly bagholding now, so I might as well talk to the wall. As they say, bon chance.

    • exapted says:

      Yes I agree there are too many ifs, and MaidSafe needs to actually publish a paper explaining how they solve the double spending problem and how they deal with freeloading. I don’t have any stake in MaidSafeCoin, and I don’t care whether MaidSafe or another equivalent or better p2p platform succeeds. But I really want some platform or set of platforms equivalent or similar to MaidSafe to succeed. That could support business models that are not based on advertising, and also not based on directly selling a product.

    • Pete Dushenski says:

      exapted,

      I’m genuinely curious, what features excite you most about these new platforms?

    • exapted says:

      Both the built-in app revenue model and the incentive for “farming” excite me. The surveillance business model of the internet sucks, and distributed networks do much better with economic incentives and large user bases.

      Assume the problems are solved (I know that’s a big assumption). MaidSafeCoin will be valuable because transactions will be free and very fast. “Farmers” will operate the MaidSafe network because of the value of MaidSafeCoin. MaidSafeCoin will depend on MaidSafe operation, and MaidSafe operation will be incentivized by the value of MaidSafeCoin.

      I guess that mostly depends on solving the freeloading and double spend problems.

    • Pete Dushenski says:

      The surveillance business model of the internet sucks

      This is really just the advertising model of consumerdom. This is bypassed with noscripts, firewalls, VPNs, and not clicking on shit.

      The double-spend problem will be a tricky one for MaidSafe to overcome. Without insane amounts of hashpower à la Bitcoin, it’ll be very vulnerable to malicious actors.

    • exapted says:

      “This is really just the advertising model of consumerdom. This is bypassed with noscripts, firewalls, VPNs, and not clicking on shit.”

      Yes, boycotting advertisements may encourage people to try new revenue models. But then what revenue model should apps and content providers use? MaidSafe proposes a novel, and in some ways ideal revenue model for apps. I don’t think anything like it exists: Creating an app is sort of like mining for MaidSafeCoins, only you don’t need to host the app. If MaidSafe doesn’t succeed, I hope some other system adopts a similar idea.

    • Pete Dushenski says:

      Maybe there is no “revenue model.” Maybe the people talking can afford to talk. This is how shit worked in the past. It ain’t fair, but goddamit if it doesn’t separate the lemma from the palea.

    • exapted says:

      Yes MaidSafe seems rather monolothic, and I am not attached to the approach.

      The use case I have in mind: mixnet platform.

      Tor has two big problems for which MaidSafe supposedly has solutions:
      It’s state sponsored – solution: MaidSafe app revenue model. And there are not enough nodes – solution: MaidSafeCoin farming (not sure if a MaidSafe app could do exit nodes, but something similar to hidden services should work).

      Maybe Tor could do fine without an app revenue model. But at least there should be economic incentives for people to run Tor nodes (MaidSafe nodes, if Tor runs on top of MaidSafe), so that it is fast and less vulnerable to sybil attacks. Using Tor (MaidSafe) needs to be completely free for most users, so that there is a large user base. I don’t see how it can be free for most users without a speculative bubble / goldrush to support it (MaidSafeCoin farming, similar to Bitcoin mining). If MaidSafe could be converted into a huge mixnet, all the better. It would be great if all sorts of network activity could be mixed together (decentralized exchanges, Tor clearnet browsing, etc.).

      If similar goals can be achieved with another approach, then we don’t need a MaidSafe -like system.

    • exapted says:

      What I’m saying is that, without farming, there won’t be enough Tor nodes OR Tor won’t be free. Without an app revenue model, people need to donate their intellectual utility to develop and maintain Tor, which has limits (See http://t.co/iT3FauF6NG. It is also harder to hire legal expertise or educate people about Tor thus the user base will be limited, which is bad for a mixnet.)

    • Pete Dushenski says:

      It is also harder to hire legal expertise or educate people about Tor thus the user base will be limited, which is bad for a mixnet.

      Why is limited use bad if a sufficient number of nodes can be maintained by, say, user fees? Good things cost money and are therefore limited to those who see value in them. Shitty things are free and “widely used.”

    • exapted says:

      (Assuming Tor is running on MaidSafe)

    • exapted says:

      [Why is limited use bad if a sufficient number of nodes can be maintained by, say, user fees? Good things cost money and are therefore limited to those who see value in them. Shitty things are free and “widely used.”]

      I think we agree that more nodes prevents Sybil attack, and more users makes Tor more anonymous. Also, more high quality nodes could support new features for defeating traffic analysis, etc.

      I think you are right that a user-fee that goes to Tor servers is the ultimate solution. Currently I think that would drive away too many users and existing Tor servers would operate at a loss. In the long-term I think it is a great solution.

      Short-term solution:
      A crypto-currency with a competitive advantage would drive up the capacity of the p2p network on which it is mined. Users wouldn’t need to pay, so there would be more users. The p2p network would need to default to a regular payment scheme once the competitive advantage of the crypto-currency dissipates.

      I think we agree that this depends on whether the crypto-currency really has a competitive advantage. (e.g. does MaidSafeCoin really solve the double spend problem?)

      Finally, there is the question of whether a p2p storage network like MaidSafe makes sense. I like the idea of a p2p storage network that is also a mixnet. But with a sufficiently large user base, I think separating storage from mixnet would work too.

    • Pete Dushenski says:

      There is no such thing as “cryptocurrency” and there’s no use in short-term band-aid solutions. This is not a valid model.

      If you want to build something of lasting value, that is, something Good, build something with long-term thinking embedded into its core from Day 1. Anything less with suck proportionately to your failure to see past a near-term horizon.

    • exapted says:

      I agree we should build things as long-term as possible.

      One of the reasons Bitcoin is the only valuable cryptocurrency is that no other cryptocurrency offers a significantly more compelling set of features for similar use cases. There’s basically a lot of Bitcoin copies with subtle evolution. Assuming the MaidSafeCoin chained ledger works, MaidSafeCoin may compete with Bitcoin in market value, due to the likely market demand for fast transactions and very cheap or free microtransactions. In that case, where MaidSafeCoin is a viable currency, there needs to be a way of minting new coins. There also needs to be a fallback to a fee mechanism. Again this all depends on the currency having a uniquely compelling set of features.

    • Pete Dushenski says:

      One of the reasons Bitcoin is the only valuable cryptocurrency is that no other cryptocurrency offers a significantly more compelling set of features for similar use cases.

      Bitcoin derives value from it being predictably scarce, secure, pseudononymous, featherlight, and having distributed issuance. Therefore, proposing that any other altcoin can derive value from “use cases” because that’s what Bitcoin does is invalid. Bitcoin isn’t valuable because of all the Teslas and pizzas you can buy with it. You can’t buy either of these with an SDR but that hardly seems to hurt its value.

      Assuming the MaidSafeCoin chained ledger works,

      Assuming that you can build a train bridge out of used toothpicks…

      MaidSafeCoin may compete with Bitcoin in market value, due to the likely market demand for fast transactions and very cheap or free microtransactions.

      Imagine how valuable used toothpicks would become! The world needs more train bridges, after all. And the market for train bridges could somehow be more valuable than the market for all the transactable equity in the world.

      Sounds a little silly when rephrased as such, y’know?

    • Pete Dushenski says:

      One of the reasons Bitcoin is the only valuable cryptocurrency is that no other cryptocurrency offers a significantly more compelling set of features for similar use cases.

      Bitcoin derives value from it being predictably scarce, secure, pseudononymous, featherlight, and having distributed issuance. Therefore, proposing that any other altcoin can derive value from “use cases” because that’s what Bitcoin does is invalid. Bitcoin isn’t valuable because of all the Teslas and pizzas you can buy with it. You can’t buy either of these with an SDR but that hardly seems to hurt its value.

      Assuming the MaidSafeCoin chained ledger works,

      Assuming that you can build a train bridge out of used toothpicks…

      MaidSafeCoin may compete with Bitcoin in market value, due to the likely market demand for fast transactions and very cheap or free microtransactions.

      Imagine how valuable used toothpicks would become! The world needs more train bridges, after all. And the market for train bridges could somehow be more valuable than the market for all the transactable equity in the world.

      Sounds a little silly when rephrased as such, y’know?

    • exapted says:

      There are some things that Bitcoin doesn’t do well. Zerocash will supposedly have some advantages that would be difficult to achieve on the Bitcoin blockchain. If Bitcoin doesn’t adopt the Zerocoin protocol or doesn’t do it well (arbitrary transaction size, hidden transaction size, efficient verification, etc.), then I don’t think it’s good enough (long term) for the dark markets or OpenBazaar; it doesn’t cover that set of use cases. I bet that one or more Bytecoin (or later Zerocash) -like cryptocurrencies will attain a significant market value, because strong anonymity is very valuable.

      If a no-fee chained ledger cryptocurrency exists, then a similar argument to the above applies. Using such a cryptocurrency for fast transactions may be more secure than not confirming Bitcoin transactions. If you’re using it for cheap microtransactions, the risk is low and the savings obvious.

      According to your view, I’m wondering how you imagine the market will respond to the demand for fast transactions, no-fee microtransactions, and strong anonymity.

    • strong anonymity is very valuable.

      Transactional obfuscation is obviously very valuable. Thankfully, Bitcoin has this built right in. There’s no need for “better solutions” to a problem that’s for all intents and purposes solved.

      As for individual anonymity, this is far less valuable than it might appear. On the Internet, where trust is everything because recourse is unfeasible, it’s impossible to trust someone who is truly anonymous, that is, someone who has no reputation and could just as likely be your mother as a mole. Without at least pseudonymity and the Web of Trust, online relationships, and therefore any type of functioning economy, can in no way be built.

    • exapted says:

      Stealth addresses in Bitcoin result in a unique receive address for each transaction. That’s better than nothing, but a determined investigator can often figure out who the receiver is.

      It’s true that using a reputation system will often de-anonymize you anyway, but I don’t think that makes strong anonymity (in a cryptocurrency) any less valuable. Consider some individual cases:
      1) I visit a psychiatrist and pay out of pocket with Bitcoin. Even if the psychiatrist uses a stealth address, depending on several factors, it is possible for someone to determine who the recipient is. Yes, the psychiatrist is going to have my Bitcoin address anyway, but I don’t want the rest of the world to know who and how much I paid. (I also don’t want anyone to know how many bitcoins I have.)
      2) I buy drugs on Silk Road. The seller will know my name and address, but I still want to keep everything else related to payment completely anonymous to the rest of the world.***
      3) I sell drugs on Silk Road. The buyers will know my pseudonym anyway. However, no one else really needs to know anything about the actual transaction.***

      *** In some cases it may be of value to prove ownership of something, or prove participation in some transaction as a sender or receiver.

    • a determined investigator can often figure out who the receiver is.

      Induction not being the same as deduction, and induction not actually being a thing, our intrepid investigator can only guess. And one quick move of those coins to a new address makes even his best theory go poof! with alarming expediency. If under the spotlight of an interrogation, who’s to say that you didn’t sell them to the investigator himself?

      Me thinks you need to read this again: Have no fear, Bitcoin is here.

    • exapted says:

      To hide the identity of the receiver from your adversary, the receiver must practice sufficient opsec to resist your adversary. This requires trust, and so it’s not a robust solution. For example, say I pay my psychiatrist in Bitcoin and my adversary is the Bitcoin enthusiast. I send my bitcoins to my psychistrist’s stealth / unique address. To hide the identity of the recipient from the Bitcoin enthusiast, my psychiatrist might send those bitcoins to a unique exchange receive address, at a time and in an amount that is dissimilar enough to other transactions. In this case, using Bitpay would work. Either way, I have to trust the receiver or some third party.

    • The obfuscation angle really only works online. In “meatspace,” there are a thousand and one other ways to confirm, far more conclusively, whether you had your head shrunk last Tuesday.

      And online, it’s entirely about trust, thereby obliviating anonymity between two parties. I’d recommend reading up on GPG Contracts (whenever Trilema comes back online) for more on this topic.

    • exapted says:

      This is an interesting discussion and could continue a long time, but it’s probably better to discuss anonymity in another context. Anonymity is a tool and not a panacea.

  20. exapted says:

    In my last reply, assume Tor is running on MaidSafe.

  21. justin chellis says:

    Maid Safe value is the decentralized mesh network, powered by the people for the people. Today is ever growing need to have privacy without the spying eye’s of commercial interest and government law enforcement. social media apps are being developed like synereo. The maid safe network will have the ability to copyright artist data. Maid Safe is more then just a drop box or a simple TOR network. I see it is as what bit-torrent did for file sharing with a internet layer over the top.
    Bitcoin maybe original and first most secure way transferring funds on a p2p decentrilzed network. but bitcoin has only has economical value and is only financial tool. It does not inspire people to share information or create art. It only purpose is to transfer wealth around the world.
    People are always bogged down by an IPO or if it was permined. But the truth is only people invested in thousands of dollars worth of mining equipment that have invested interest to keep crypto currency as a mined commodity will always FUD anything new Like POS. they know each time a new POS is released which better then the one before that bitcoin will loose value making their mining equipment worthless.

    • Maid Safe value is the decentralized mesh network, powered by the people for the people.

      Sounds like democratic socialism. You know that means it’ll never work, right ?

      Today is ever growing need to have privacy without the spying eye’s of commercial interest and government law enforcement.

      Agreed. So PGP and Bitcoin or STFU.

      I see it is as what bit-torrent did for file sharing with a internet layer over the top.

      Just because something happened in the past and it worked, being BitTorrent in this instance, doesn’t mean that whatever cockamamie notions you have rattling about in your skull have anything to do with them or are in any way similar to them. Who asked you again ?

      Bitcoin maybe original and first most secure way transferring funds on a p2p decentrilzed network. but bitcoin has only has economical value and is only financial tool.

      Your spelling and grammar. It hurts. Bitcoin is a hell of a lot more than just a financial tool. It disrupts everything.

  22. […] instead of the network connections, and to me sounds like a platform-cross between the stillborn Maidsafe networkiii and an out-of-box attempt by the USG to kill net neutrality and therefore not help the less […]

  23. […] perfectly content to call out non-emperors just as well. See the sorry cases of Travis Patron or MAIDSAFE if you’re interested. […]

  24. Jabba says:

    Ha, brilliant! Thank you for your lack of vision guys. I managed to buy in at IPO prices just a month ago, my rather enormous investment has already tripled and the MVP will be launched this week or next with alpha just weeks behind that. The code is absolutely beautiful. Why don’t you go check out github and realise that as with ethereum, maidsafe is going to overtake BTCs market cap because it is doing something very different to BTC and has much more to offer.

    My ethers are also up 700%, so is now an appropriate time for you to hold your hands up and say you were wrong so you can get in while it’s still cheap? No, i should imagine not. You will do what you have done throughout this thread and what people like you always do, you make a decision from your gut and then you look for arguments to validate it. Confirmation bias, unqualified, over-confident judgement and stubbornness.

    You are the one who hasn’t done your due diligence. I have. I even got some of the best coders I know to look over github with me to give me their feedback.

    You were wrong… will you be man enough to admit it and accept it before you make more of a fool of yourself than you already have done here?

    /counts my money and chuckles at the lesson he was taught as a young man that others need to learn – observation without judgement is the basis of intelligence… you might do well to remember that as you grow older and wiser and don’t post silly, poorly researched things like this. Wisdom is knowing how little you know and instead of pretending to see it all, try opening your eyes and actually looking with an open mind.

    Blurgh, David is a genius and it is sad to see anyone give him anything but props and pats on the back for what he has managed to achieve; it’s about to change the world completely… cloud storage lol, you obviously have very little imagination and know very little about what safenetwork actually is.

    Enjoy your btc jumps of 10-20%… ooo will blocksize get solved and you go to 10bn market cap? Pfft, small fry, your sidechain potential is weak and upstaged, move over nostalgia-nuts, the future is on the door-step whether you like it or not.

    • as with ethereum, maidsafe is going to overtake BTCs market cap

      Just like Ripple eh ? And just like USD is “worth” more than BTC ? Mkay.

      Anyways, the world is thrilled to hear that someone is making (paper) gains on penny stocks. Neomania ftw.

  25. james says:

    Hi Pete, like most of us you are clearly very comitted to the ‘I’m right, you’re wrong’ dialogue that has done do much to advance Humankind across millenia (so far so predictably dull).

    As a neutral (yes, yes I understand you’ll probably have to read neutral as sock puppet or something, no matter) what would maidsafe and / or ethereum have to do in order for you to be wrong? Where does that line lie for you?

    • James, thanks for the inquiry. In order for either maidsafe or ethereum to “prove me wrong,” as it were, they would actually have to release functioning products. At this point, as far as users are concerned, they’re both vaporware until proven otherwise. Granting that it took a bit of time before Bitcoin emerged from the developer’s coccoon, but as far as I can tell, neither maidsafe nor ethereum is much more than a kickstarter campaign with tradeable tokens at that point, and it’s only this tradability that seems to lend the appearance of value to their respective, and likely overlapping, bagholders.

      Given that maidsafe still isn’t actually a thing (any more than Musk’s Hyperloop is), and given that ethereum appears to be cobbled together with bubble gum and duct tape at this beta phase of development (sort of like the F-35 project), neither inspires much confidence. Then again, this is about par for the course for anything involving Americans en masse, so it can’t come as all that much of a surprise.

  26. james says:

    Ok thanks Pete, that’s clearer for me now. They would need to cross the line between ‘concept’ and ‘thing’ gotcha. Honestly I was expecting the bar (for you) to be higher so that was my mistaken assumption. Anyway very interesting blog so thanks for that.

  27. […] impact in either a practical or an intellectual sense since I called it out as a scam on April 20, 2014, nor does there appear to be an imminent breakthrough at this point or at any point in the […]

  28. […] project and create an Altcoin For The People despite the already spectacular array of exactly such garbage. It… didn’t work. And no one is surprised […]

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