Author Topic: Bitcoins  (Read 1813 times)

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Fay

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Bitcoins
« on: Feb 04, 2014, 18:17:42 »
no matter how much i read abut the above, i still dont understand it.

do you buy them, as a serial number,  with £ and then spend on what you want, leaving no trace of your transactions
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mickw

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Re: Bitcoins
« Reply #1 on: Feb 04, 2014, 18:34:02 »
From what I can make out, bitcoins allow you to be robbed without knowing who did it and with no way of getting your money back.

I'd rather pay the extra on plastic and at least be able to phone someone when it goes tits up - even if it is in India
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Fay

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Re: Bitcoins
« Reply #2 on: Feb 04, 2014, 18:35:07 »
 :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
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Mike

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Re: Bitcoins
« Reply #3 on: Feb 04, 2014, 19:16:16 »
Fay I did a lot of reading about Bitcoin. I even tried 'mining' them for a while, which after months of work was fruitless. Even considered buying one of these ASIC Miner boxes:



Despite all that, I still don't really understand it all.

Like Mick said, there have been many horror stories about them too which puts you off.
We live in a society exquisitely dependent on science and technology, in which hardly anyone knows anything about science and technology. Carl Sagan

MarkS

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Re: Bitcoins
« Reply #4 on: Feb 04, 2014, 19:50:06 »
Interesting.

I just looked online and they quote the power(?) of these boxes in GH/sec.

What is GH/sec?

For instance a box consuming 1kilowatt of power will yield 120GH/sec

Given the average rate of bitcoin "discovery" is it possible to recover your electricity costs or the hardware costs?

Mark

Fay

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Re: Bitcoins
« Reply #5 on: Feb 04, 2014, 20:04:54 »
well whatever they are, they seem to be getting very popular. i assume they are not physical but you must spend money on purchasing their unique numbers. it all sounds like a big online game or con
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MarkS

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Re: Bitcoins
« Reply #6 on: Feb 04, 2014, 21:55:58 »
You are right Fay.  They are effectively only "numbers" in a computer and they only have any value to those who believe they have value.  They could become valueless overnight but on the other hand they could become a very important virtual currency and the early adopters could become rich.

Consider black tulips.  They're worth nothing nowadays but during the craze they were worth a fortune.  Sufficient people thought they were valuable.

At the end of the day, what is the value of those bits of paper in your pocket with £10, £20 or £50 written on them?  Are they any more secure than bitcoins?  If the big meteorite hits tomorrow then the only thing left with any value would be food and guns.  Oh dear, I've launched off into apocalyptic mode again ...

Fay

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Re: Bitcoins
« Reply #7 on: Feb 04, 2014, 22:20:31 »
You are right Mark. Value is a weird thing, we could all come to our senses and realise its all made up, for the moment. The story of The emperors new clothes comes to mind here
« Last Edit: Feb 05, 2014, 16:36:46 by Fay »
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Mike

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Re: Bitcoins
« Reply #8 on: Feb 04, 2014, 23:19:15 »
....but on the other hand they could become a very important virtual currency and the early adopters could become rich.

http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2013/nov/27/hard-drive-bitcoin-landfill-site
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Mac

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Re: Bitcoins
« Reply #9 on: Feb 05, 2014, 07:31:54 »
I believe he is still digging the landfill looking for the drive. :lol:

Mac.
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MarkS

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Re: Bitcoins
« Reply #10 on: Feb 05, 2014, 08:15:28 »
It seems it is possible to buy specialised hardware (since PCs and Graphics cards are now too slow) for the bitcoin calculations and make money i.e. the mined bitcoins will be worth more than the hardware and electricity costs.
Even if they are not worth more then you might take the view that the investment potential is worth it but that seems to be a more tenuous argument.


GH/sec is giga hashes / sec.  A hash is the fundamental unit of work in the cryptographic algorithm so GH/sec is a measure of "how much cryptography" can be performed in one second.

Mark

Fay

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Re: Bitcoins
« Reply #11 on: Feb 05, 2014, 09:02:00 »
if you get them for nothing, just by generating them, does that mean anything you buy, you get free?
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MarkS

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Re: Bitcoins
« Reply #12 on: Feb 05, 2014, 11:02:31 »
Quote from: Fay
if you get them for nothing, just by generating them, does that mean anything you buy, you get free?

Yes - that's my understanding.  The way I see it is that "they" are paying you (in BitCoins) to do complicated calculations on your computer hardware.  If the value of the BitCoins is greater than the costs (in real money) of doing those calculations (hardware purchase and electricity) then you are in profit.


mickw

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Re: Bitcoins
« Reply #13 on: Feb 05, 2014, 11:30:02 »
So "somebody" has access to your PC to carry out a process or processes then transfer "imaginary money" in or out.

Sounds a bit like a botnet
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Fay

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Re: Bitcoins
« Reply #14 on: Feb 05, 2014, 13:04:24 »
Question is who are "they" ?
I reckon it has all been set up by the utility companies!

Question 2, why am i trying to understand something that even Mark or Mike does not understand?   :o
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