Forum rules
The more people that are involved, the more interesting this AMA series will be for everyone.
Please help spread the word of this amazing AMA series on your own social media. (YES, EVEN YOURS!)
Short URL: AMA.Bitcoin.com
Hashtag: #BTCAMA
When the AMAs are finished, all the answers will be compiled into a free E-book!
User avatar
psztorc
AMA
AMA
Posts: 36
Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2015 10:19 pm

Donate BTC of your choice to 1M5tVTtynuqiS7Goq8hbh5UBcxLaa5XQb8

Contact: Website Twitter

I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Wed Dec 16, 2015 6:29 pm

Hello!

My name is Paul Sztorc and I've accomplished a number of cool things:

* My project, "Hivemind" actually *survived review* by Bitcoin super-skeptics Andrew Poelstra and Peter Todd. Roger Ver once referred to it as "possibly the most important project since Bitcoin".

* I wrote a concrete proposal for two-way pegs ( http://www.truthcoin.info/blog/drivechain/ ). With this technology, "altcoins are obsolete, Bitcoin smart contracts are possible, and Bitcoin Core and BitcoinXT can coexist".

* I created a completely decentralized governance model for Bitcoin (and next, for the world) ( http://www.truthcoin.info/blog/win-win-blocksize/ ), which I presented at Montreal Scaling Bitcoin. What's more, I know why it wasn't popular among the Bitcoin Intellectuals (in fact I was practically counting on it), and I know exactly what to do about it!

* I proved that it is logically impossible for "proof of work" to be "more wasteful" than "proof of stake" or any other "proof of whatever" ( http://www.truthcoin.info/blog/pow-cheapest/ )

Before working in Bitcoin, I was a statistician at the Yale Economics Deptarment under superstar (and FED chairperson) Bill Nordhaus. Before that I worked in consulting (finance / healthcare IT) and operations, and before that I was a graduate student.

Ask me anything! 8-)

User avatar
psztorc
AMA
AMA
Posts: 36
Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2015 10:19 pm

Donate BTC of your choice to 1M5tVTtynuqiS7Goq8hbh5UBcxLaa5XQb8

Contact: Website Twitter

Re: I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Wed Dec 16, 2015 6:31 pm

First question for myself: how long does this AMA go on for?

Answer: I will continue to answer questions for as long as they are asked, for the foreseeable future!

droplister
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Nov 02, 2015 5:00 pm

Re: I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Wed Dec 16, 2015 6:42 pm

Paul,

How did you come to Bitcoin? What about Bitcoin makes it worth being involved with? When will other econ people take Bitcoin seriously?

User avatar
psztorc
AMA
AMA
Posts: 36
Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2015 10:19 pm

Donate BTC of your choice to 1M5tVTtynuqiS7Goq8hbh5UBcxLaa5XQb8

Contact: Website Twitter

Re: I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Wed Dec 16, 2015 7:05 pm

> How did you come to Bitcoin?

I've always been a huge fan of (what we might now call) the "old school libertarianism" of Milton Friedman. As a result, I had been subscribed to one mailing list or another, and one of them offered to hand out "Bitcoins" if you attended their event in New Hampshire. As in The Matrix, everyone fails their first Bitcoin Jump, and I immediately thought "Why would anyone exchange *real money* for this thing?". That was 2011.

I had almost completely forgotten about that, until I, by chance discovered the Silk Road article ( http://gawker.com/the-underground-websi ... g-30818160 ). I had a few thoughts in quick succession:

1. This Bitcoin thing can do things that the USD can't do.
2. In fact, it can probably do *everything* the current USD can do.
3. Holy sh*t.
4. Is this thing for real? I should check out the websi--
5. Hang-on....it must be for real, because people wouldn't *ship drugs* unless it was real-enough.
6. Holy sh*t.

I ended up being slightly wrong about #2, after thinking it over (wrt things like taxes).


> What about Bitcoin makes it worth being involved with?

I think Bitcoin can enable a private, secure internet. Currently, if you want something, you have to pay for it. Today, we buy internet access, and we use the internet for our most private thoughts and conjectures. The concept that TOR is unavailable to the mainstream, and that it is impractically slow, and that instead you'd have these logs somewhere of everything anyone's ever searched. What a nightmare!

I am a huge fan of George Orwell, and that kind of nonsense I mentioned above simply can't be allowed to stand. I hope that Bitcoin can inject the management-organizational powers of the marketplace into some kind of mesh network.


> When will other econ people take Bitcoin seriously?

This is an extremely interesting and important question. I have to say that Dr. Nordhaus knew about Bitcoin when I started working at Yale in December 2012, some of his students had mentioned it. He asked me about it in April 2013, and was able to comprehend the technical operations (ie mining) in something like 20 minutes (which is by far the fastest I've ever seen anyone understand it). He later organized a lunch where I described Bitcoin to other Yale professors. There, we theorized about how Bitcoin would allow researchers to easily measure money supply and velocity, and could even set interest rates, even negative interest rates... benefits of depreciating cash, etc.

And, yet, I know exactly what you mean when you imply that "other econ people" don't take Bitcoin seriously. I think part of the reason is that econ people tend to be "intellectuals" in the Tom Sowell sense, of 'idea workers'. Idea workers tend to be less interested in practical things that already exist...my guess is that these people would be writing books, if Satoshi had *only* released the design (and not the software). Now that the software exists, there's a risk to all theorists, of being embarrassed and proven wrong.

To paraphrase Dr. Hanson, "The problem with being clear, is that sometimes you're clearly wrong." since Bitcoin exists, in published code format, it is very "clear" and so it is kind of threatening to the intellectual community, I think.

There is something of a practicality - intellectual tradeoff, maybe. I often find this essay by Milton Friedman relevant: http://0055d26.netsolhost.com/friedman/ ... 2.1966.pdf

And, of course, the obvious answer is that much of formal econ is about "welfare maximization" (what could be described as "central planning"). The training usually says: "always use the market....except in these cases" and monetary policy is listed as one of those special cases. Certainly Bitcoin, if mainstream, would make some Economists functionally obsolete.

I'd like to think that it isn't that simple, however.

pa_
Posts: 6
Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2015 10:09 pm

Re: I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Wed Dec 16, 2015 7:45 pm

When will we be able to use Hivemind? Will governments permit the operation of a truly anonymous, uncensorable, decentralized prediction market? Why are governments so opposed to prediction markets?

Seneca
Posts: 1
Joined: Wed Dec 16, 2015 7:27 pm

Re: I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Wed Dec 16, 2015 7:49 pm

Hi Paul,

first of all, I like your writings a lot. You have the ability to explain hard things very clearly.

Since you seem to like Taleb (am I wrong?), my question is: do you think Bitcoin is antifragile (gets stronger from harm)? Also, another thing that has been bothering me: if Bitcoin grows to have a massive influence on society and economy, do you see that there could be considerable black swan risks (for example the whole system breaking somehow) that could have huge negative consequences? What can or should be done regarding this, if anything?

Thanks!

User avatar
psztorc
AMA
AMA
Posts: 36
Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2015 10:19 pm

Donate BTC of your choice to 1M5tVTtynuqiS7Goq8hbh5UBcxLaa5XQb8

Contact: Website Twitter

Re: I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Wed Dec 16, 2015 8:07 pm

> When will we be able to use Hivemind?

It is always dangerous to forecast software release dates. Bitshares and Ethereum are interesting examples, where delays went into the "months" or even "years" territory.

Here are some amusing links of prediction markets being used to forecast software release dates:
http://forum.truthcoin.info/index.php/topic,129.0.html
http://forum.truthcoin.info/index.php/topic,193.0.html

Ultimately Hivemind will only succeed at all, if it catches on in the open source community. These project have tremendous long-term maintenance costs, and no one should have to pay for these (experience teaches us, I think, that intrinsically motivated developers are key).

That being said, a lot of the software already works: https://github.com/bitcoin-hivemind/hivemind
At my own peril, I would guess that January would be "the month" that the software becomes circulated.
As for when it can actually be used, in a reliable sense, that would partially depend on the status of a Bitcoin soft fork for sidechains. The process of the soft fork can take months of review, and weeks of activation. I would hope that the soft fork happens in Spring 2016 so that the markets can be online for the 2016 election, but that is up to many other people.

In fact, at this point, very little is really up to me.

Ultimately, the more developers who read the white paper, the more will be qualified to contribute. If these contributions are productive, the software will come out faster. This is very much *not* a startup selling a product, this is an open source software project.


> Will governments permit the operation of a truly anonymous, uncensorable, decentralized prediction market?

We already know, from recent history, that many of them will not.


> Why are governments so opposed to prediction markets?

This question is of supreme relevance, isn't it? Some believe that prediction markets are just inherently unpopular, but this is not my view. I very recently updated this document: http://bitcoinhivemind.com/papers/1_Purpose.pdf to reflect some of my latest and clearest articulation of the issue.

The core of the question, I think, is that prediction markets *compete* with governments, and all who would govern. This is very much in the same way that markets in general compete with 'all who would govern'. I just above linked to an excellent Milton Friedman speech on this topic: http://0055d26.netsolhost.com/friedman/ ... 2.1966.pdf

User avatar
psztorc
AMA
AMA
Posts: 36
Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2015 10:19 pm

Donate BTC of your choice to 1M5tVTtynuqiS7Goq8hbh5UBcxLaa5XQb8

Contact: Website Twitter

Re: I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Wed Dec 16, 2015 8:18 pm

> first of all, I like your writings a lot. You have the ability to explain hard things very clearly.

Thank you! : )

> Since you seem to like Taleb (am I wrong?)

Love him. In fact, it is pretty clear to me that everyone who doesn't love him, just "dosen't get" what he's trying to accomplish.

> , my question is: do you think Bitcoin is antifragile (gets stronger from harm)?

Yes I do. The "organic" mining process, and the deliberate reactive-unwinding of that process in March 2013, is evidence of this. As is the concept of the "soft fork" (a kind of evolution by natural selection).

> Also, another thing that has been bothering me: if Bitcoin grows to have a massive influence on society and economy, do you see that there could be considerable black swan risks (for example the whole system breaking somehow) that could have huge negative consequences? What can or should be done regarding this, if anything?

This is something which concerns me as well. However, my view is: are things better or worse under Bitcoin? In today's world, someone might hack your identity, your bank account, or your Vanguard account, etc. This seems to be basically unchanged over Bitcoin. What, however, if Vanguard, or the bank, collapses? When Lehman Brothers went bankrupt in 2008, the LB employees just took their stuff and left...it was quite a project to figure out who owed what to whom (a multi-million dollar, multi-month project). I think we are actually better off with a decentralized system...my opinion is that the miners are relatively tame, and will work long some long days to resolve any major problem. Ultimately, filtration is always easier than creation...the miners can choose to mine empty blocks, the developers can switch things off, or comment things out, etc. (and so we can force things to "slow down" while the developers are fixing things up).

User avatar
ronnieb
Nickel Bitcoiner
Nickel Bitcoiner
Posts: 176
Joined: Sat Oct 03, 2015 6:15 pm
Location: Idaho
Contact: Website Facebook

Re: I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Wed Dec 16, 2015 9:22 pm

@Paul, WOW! thanks for your contributions in the space!!

Questions:

I have been concerned (and asking) that Prediction Markets might quell innovation in certain areas. e.g. If MGM conducted prediction market research to determine which movies they would make, they might never make a movie that "bombed" at the box office. Not that I want to watch "suckie" movies, but lower quality movies might find a cult following (original Wallstreet or Footlose - Opinion I know) or really let us know how good the "good" movies are. The old idiom "you never know how bad you feel until you feel good". I worry that had Rock of Ages been put to prediction market it would have never been created... and then I wouldn't have 4 DVDs of Rock of Ages.

Are there any good resources you suggest that I can use to help demonstrate to the general public how powerful prediction markets are?

Would you be willing to talk (via Hangouts - about 15 minutes tops with Q&A) at one of our Bitcoin Meetups?

User avatar
psztorc
AMA
AMA
Posts: 36
Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2015 10:19 pm

Donate BTC of your choice to 1M5tVTtynuqiS7Goq8hbh5UBcxLaa5XQb8

Contact: Website Twitter

Re: I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Wed Dec 16, 2015 9:52 pm

> @Paul, WOW! thanks for your contributions in the space!!

My pleasure!


> I have been concerned (and asking) that Prediction Markets might quell innovation in certain areas. e.g. If MGM conducted prediction market research to determine which movies they would make, they might never make a movie that "bombed" at the box office.

That's a very interesting idea. However, it goes to the underlying concept of 'objective' -- if the purpose of a movie is to make money, then low-revenue movies should not be made. If the point of a movie is to make art, then they should be assessed under different criteria. One can have a prediction market on "IMDB rank of Movie X 20 years from now".

Ultimately, while ambiguity can be helpful, I think, push-come-to-shove, we would all prefer greater overall clarity.


> Are there any good resources you suggest that I can use to help demonstrate to the general public how powerful prediction markets are?

It is virtually *impossible* to demonstrate the usefulness of prediction markets to the general public (for the same reasons that it is virtually impossible to get the public to understand the virtue of markets in general). Here is a good attempt by a professional communicator: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Fkv1MAkZEw

The thing is, really the entire point of my project is that we won't need to convince people of the usefulness of some abstract concept. Instead we merely say, "well if you really believe that, I can make you a lot of money". PMs are inherently informational, so adding more inferential gaps "you need to believe in PMs, that they work, that they can't be manipulated, etc" would be highly counterproductive.

This is the post that inspired it all: http://www.overcomingbias.com/2013/05/h ... oubts.html I can imagine Satoshi writing something similar about e-cash, or Milton Friedman about free market economics.


> Would you be willing to talk (via Hangouts - about 15 minutes tops with Q&A) at one of our Bitcoin Meetups?

Certainly! 8-)

User avatar
bitc0in
Nickel Bitcoiner
Nickel Bitcoiner
Posts: 27
Joined: Fri Sep 25, 2015 1:20 am
Location: Europe

Re: I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Thu Dec 17, 2015 12:06 am

Hello Paul Sztorc,

I have some basic questions:

How did you get your first bitcoins?
Do you still buy/get bitcoins?
Do you often check the Btc price?

Thank you.
:mrgreen:

User avatar
psztorc
AMA
AMA
Posts: 36
Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2015 10:19 pm

Donate BTC of your choice to 1M5tVTtynuqiS7Goq8hbh5UBcxLaa5XQb8

Contact: Website Twitter

Re: I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Thu Dec 17, 2015 12:16 am

Hello!

> How did you get your first bitcoins?

BitInstant...by having the most awkward conversation possible at a CVS while they explained to me how to use MoneyGram. That was Summer of 2012 I believe.

Man, that was weird. As a white male upper-middle-class Connecticut suburbanite with perfect credit, and parents with small business accounts at local banks, you really just don't understand the *state* of modern payments until you try to buy Bitcoin. The data you need to share, the suspicious tone of it all, the need to pay in cash. Quite surreal.

> Do you still buy/get bitcoins?

I still buy a little each month. They're undervalued.

> Do you often check the Btc price?

I have the "Bitcoin Paranoid" app installed on my Android phone, set to 15 minutes. And I check coinmarketcap twice a day.

alexkravets
Posts: 1
Joined: Thu Nov 26, 2015 3:12 am

Re: I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Thu Dec 17, 2015 12:22 am

Hello Paul,

If you could go back in time and change one thing in the Bitcoin protocol (or its reference implementation) what would that be ?

User avatar
psztorc
AMA
AMA
Posts: 36
Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2015 10:19 pm

Donate BTC of your choice to 1M5tVTtynuqiS7Goq8hbh5UBcxLaa5XQb8

Contact: Website Twitter

Re: I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Thu Dec 17, 2015 12:35 am

> If you could go back in time and change one thing in the Bitcoin protocol (or its reference implementation) what would that be ?

That's an easy one.

While nearly perfect, I think there is a tiny flaw in Bitcoin. And I think this flaw is more "spiritually" relevant than, for example, the timewarp bug, neglect of Schnorr, malleability.

I would have set Bitcoin to produce 50 coins / block for 4 years, and then 25 coins / block for 4 years, and then I would set the reward-decay to happen on a per-block schedule rather than a per-four-years schedule. The logic would be that there are two tiers where everyone is equal, for 8 years of early-adoption, but after that there is no need (and tremendous risk) to suddenly cause the coin-reward to plunge by a factor of two (instead, we would be in steady-state mode and the decline would happen gradually, same 21 million coin limit).

http://www.truthcoin.info/blog/mining-heart-attack/
Last edited by psztorc on Thu Dec 17, 2015 12:37 am, edited 1 time in total.

Mashuri
Posts: 2
Joined: Tue Sep 22, 2015 12:05 am

Re: I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Thu Dec 17, 2015 12:37 am

Hi Paul,

What sort of interest in Hivemind have you been getting from existing businesses and potential ventures? What use case do you believe would attract the most users to help bootstrap the platform? IMHO, I feel the biggest "pain point" Hivemind can alleviate is the exchange market. If a robust derivatives market existed that settled in bitcoin and used fast payment channels like the Lightning Network, it would allow for speculation / hedging without all the counter party risk users currently have to deal with. People would only use the conventional exchanges to (mostly) get into and out of the bitcoin ecosystem.

User avatar
psztorc
AMA
AMA
Posts: 36
Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2015 10:19 pm

Donate BTC of your choice to 1M5tVTtynuqiS7Goq8hbh5UBcxLaa5XQb8

Contact: Website Twitter

Re: I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Thu Dec 17, 2015 12:58 am

> What sort of interest in Hivemind have you been getting from existing businesses and potential ventures?

Lots of investors and big names dropped me a message (back when Hivemind was called Truthcoin), to congratulate me, but said that the regulatory concerns were too burdensome for them to offer any direct assistance. I think that that is appropriate for a decentralized blockchain project, as the entire purpose is to cut *out* 3rd party businesses and facilitators, anyway (and let everything happen P2P).

Of course, I was going to partner with InTrade, but new competitors (FanDuel and DraftKings) absorbed their sports-betting business, which was most of their revenue, and they had to close down their expected relaunch.

> What use case do you believe would attract the most users to help bootstrap the platform? IMHO, I feel the biggest "pain point" Hivemind can alleviate is the exchange market. If a robust derivatives market existed that settled in bitcoin and used fast payment channels like the Lightning Network, it would allow for speculation / hedging without all the counter party risk users currently have to deal with. People would only use the conventional exchanges to (mostly) get into and out of the bitcoin ecosystem.

I mostly agree with this. I think that someone will probably use PMs to synthesize the "BitUSD" of a particular exchange, and this would probably result in some extra specialization and arbitrage levels. For example a small number of big players, KYC-verified, might 'settle up' large transfers, and meanwhile make the BitUSD fully-available in decentralization-land. I'm not sure how important this will be.

There's some basic investing that this would enable, shifting to a kind of "Bit-DJIA" or "Bit-SP500" or "BitGold". I'm not sure how useful that would be on its own, for people who can already own those things (which, many may not be so-able). However, I think those features can be tremendously valueable *while* these people are betting on something else: http://www.truthcoin.info/blog/bitusd/# ... oin-bitusd

User avatar
Skin_in_the_game
Nickel Bitcoiner
Nickel Bitcoiner
Posts: 54
Joined: Thu Nov 19, 2015 6:51 pm

Re: I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Thu Dec 17, 2015 9:07 pm

Hello Paul, love reading your blog posts! Please keep them coming.

my usual question:

I was re-reading Antifragile by iconoclast thinker Nassim Taleb recently. He writes
"Never ask anyone for their opinion [...] Just ask them what they have -or don't have- in their portfolio"
I have come to think it's a very relevant question and you can better weight people's opinions having an idea of how many Bitcoins they hold (or do not hold.) So Instead of asking their opinion on bitcoin, I'm now asking every participants the same question:

- Do you mind to tell us which percentage of your personal net worth and/or liquid assets you hold in Bitcoins ?


And 2 questions just for you: Your opinion on the block size and the block size debate in two sentences ? Can you ELI5 what's wrong with smart contracts as described by Nick Szabo?

User avatar
psztorc
AMA
AMA
Posts: 36
Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2015 10:19 pm

Donate BTC of your choice to 1M5tVTtynuqiS7Goq8hbh5UBcxLaa5XQb8

Contact: Website Twitter

Re: I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Thu Dec 17, 2015 10:24 pm

> Hello Paul, love reading your blog posts! Please keep them coming.

Thank you!


> Do you mind to tell us which percentage of your personal net worth and/or liquid assets you hold in Bitcoins ?

There is, of course, a reason *not* to do this. Financial privacy is a thing...wealthy people are often disproportionately harassed. However, it is significant, between 25% and 75%, certainly more than is wise. The thing is...I have already sold so much, to bring it down, and now I'm just letting it ride. If it all goes to zero, no regrets. I will be selling, however, if more developers follow Greg's recent example.

The other thing is, while Taleb's principle is quite correct, I have a lot of "personal assets" in the form of 'youth' and 'degrees/credentials' that other people don't have. So it is easier for me to take certain risks, but other risks are harder...I have a different "porfolio", you could say, no matter what I invest in.


> Your opinion on the block size and the block size debate in two sentences ?

Sentence 1: Limit should stay at 1MB, frankly, on the grounds that no one has proposed anything remotely acceptable.

No good decisions have been made, by definition, because no good criteria for making decisions have even been proposed, with the notable exception of Jeff Garzik, moments ago (in his email about ECE's). One can't calculate the optimal blocksize unless one knows what the blocksize is for.

Sentence 2: Blocksize debate has revealed Bitcoin's weakest link as the developers, and alternative communication channels are outright required (my preference being prediction markets, of course: http://www.truthcoin.info/blog/win-win-blocksize/ ).

The fact that so many people could disagree on the Blocksize, without realizing that [1] they also disagree on what the blocksize is for, and [2] they don't see that the obvious way forward is to state "Here's what I think the blocksize is for. What do you think?" is distressing. It is downright embarassing. I'm sorry to say it, but, were I Satoshi Nakamoto, I would think something like: "All that hard work I did, and mankind is too stupid to just keep it alive...what a shame. Oh well, I guess I'll work on something else."


> Can you ELI5 what's wrong with smart contracts as described by Nick Szabo?

First, there's a definition problem.

Smart contracts, in the sense of Szabo, are great. We already have them, with Bitcoin. Bitcoin can do just about every contract you could want. With Hivemind's trustless escrow, Bitcoin will be able to do even more. With individual sidechains smart contracts might be everywhere.

However, Szabo has accidentally (or purposefully, to become famous or something) gone further, and endorsed Ethereum and "general smart contract creation platforms". These are fundamentally nonsense.

To try to make an ELI5 for why they are fundamentally nonsense would be tough. By allowing anyone to defect, and create their own laws, one has essentially created anarchy. My view is something like Anarchy < Theocracy < Despotism < Monarchy < Limited Government , in the Jan Helfeld club, and I try to explain why people can be more free living inside a restrictive contract, than outside of one here: http://www.truthcoin.info/blog/contract ... in-extreme

The whole point of a contract is that it enforces rules, ie restrictions on what you would've normally done.

However, the fundamental nonsense runs into other, regular, engineering nonsense, which I go into later in the post. The real point is that Bitcoin can already do all these things: Szabo's Ethereum is in the Permissioned Ledger category (all the more so now that "they" have "partnered" with Microsoft...whatever on earth that is supposed to mean, in a P2P world).
Last edited by psztorc on Thu Dec 17, 2015 11:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Mashuri
Posts: 2
Joined: Tue Sep 22, 2015 12:05 am

Re: I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Thu Dec 17, 2015 10:59 pm

* I created a completely decentralized governance model for Bitcoin (and next, for the world) ( http://www.truthcoin.info/blog/win-win-blocksize/ ), which I presented at Montreal Scaling Bitcoin. What's more, I know why it wasn't popular among the Bitcoin Intellectuals (in fact I was practically counting on it), and I know exactly what to do about it!
Hi Paul,

I forgot to ask you about this. Could you elaborate further?

EDIT:
Oh, and this recent comment of yours:
"Here's what I think the blocksize is for. What do you think?"
You may have answered this question in your blog but could you post it here in the AMA regardless?

jungian
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Oct 23, 2015 2:44 pm

Re: I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Thu Dec 17, 2015 11:31 pm

Hi Paul,

Thank you for a great blog. Your arguments persuaded me on a number of topics

Some Qs:
Now with gmaxwell possibly leaving, do you see others following? If so, what will happen to bitcoin.
You said you'd start to sell if that is the case. What will cause you to rebuy? Do you see anything else possibly overtaking bitcoin. If so, what?

Thank you very much

Apatomoose
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Nov 02, 2015 4:39 pm

Re: I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Fri Dec 18, 2015 1:50 am

Hi Paul! I don't have a question, I just want to say I love your work. The reddit drama has made it painfully obvious that costless discussion is almost completely worthless for deciding the best way forward. Prediction Markets would give a far clearer idea of what the economic consensus really is. Keep up the good work!

kingscrown
Bronze Bitcoiner
Bronze Bitcoiner
Posts: 363
Joined: Tue Oct 27, 2015 3:50 am

Re: I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Fri Dec 18, 2015 4:12 am

What kind of price do you expect for BTC to hit ? [since you are the predictor] and give us time frame ;)
Financial Underground KIngdom - Best Cryptocurrency Blog with Private Mailing List

GIVE ME A BEER 1HC58noBPD7fmyNZKP7qf7thjb6ZSVN7fK

User avatar
psztorc
AMA
AMA
Posts: 36
Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2015 10:19 pm

Donate BTC of your choice to 1M5tVTtynuqiS7Goq8hbh5UBcxLaa5XQb8

Contact: Website Twitter

Re: I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Fri Dec 18, 2015 4:26 am

> I forgot to ask you about this. Could you elaborate further?

Let me try:

"I created a completely decentralized governance model for Bitcoin"
This of course, refers to my win-win blocksize solution post. Where Bitcoin *only* undertakes *optional* soft forks, and only undertakes hard forks when the fork is determined (via prediction market) to increase the price of Bitcoin.

" (and next, for the world)"
This refers to Hivemind + Futarchy + Something I've been working on to measure Unemployment and Health in a decentralized way.

"What's more, I know why it wasn't popular among the Bitcoin Intellectuals"
Intellectuals hate markets, as do decision-makers. This is explained more here: http://bitcoinhivemind.com/papers/1_Purpose.pdf

"(in fact I was practically counting on it), and I know exactly what to do about it!"
If people could be persuaded that PMs were good, there would be no need for a complex, P2P blockchain project.


> "Here's what I think the blocksize is for. What do you think?"

I think there is a clear tragedy of the commons wrt transactions: miners get the fee, but don't need to store the transaction. Full nodes, however, do *not* get the fee, and have to store everything. Commons problems are tricky, a crude way is to estimate "what the system can handle" and just cap usage at that level. This appears to be what Satoshi did.

I see the situation as comparable to the classic differential equation, where a fish population regenerates, until you start pulling too many fish out. Then all the fish are dead. http://www.sosmath.com/diffeq/first/bif ... ation.html

User avatar
psztorc
AMA
AMA
Posts: 36
Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2015 10:19 pm

Donate BTC of your choice to 1M5tVTtynuqiS7Goq8hbh5UBcxLaa5XQb8

Contact: Website Twitter

Re: I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Fri Dec 18, 2015 4:46 am

> Thank you for a great blog. Your arguments persuaded me on a number of topics

You're welcome!


> Now with gmaxwell possibly leaving, do you see others following?

All we know now, is that someone with Wladimir's facebook claimed that Greg has resigned some access rights in GitHub for, apparently, "personal reasons". Exactly what that means, (that he is going on temporary vacation, that he is leaving Bitcoin forever, that he now plans to work for a major government to destroy Bitcoin out of revenge) is very important.

If Greg actually "leaves" and others follow, AND the Bitcoin software undergoes changes based on "what the community wants", it will demonstrate that Bitcoin is not decentralized. Instead, Bitcoin is simply controlled by whoever pays the most for their reddit manipulation software. So we may be seeing the first half of the end of Bitcoin. My guess is that any contentious hard fork will fail, at this point, as XT seems to have already failed. So the second half may be quite resilient.

If I had to guess, I would say that this may spark some kind of unified 'dev strike'. I doubt another single individual will leave, until they are singled out as much as Greg was. Or, perhaps, nothing will happen.


> You said you'd start to sell if that is the case. What will cause you to rebuy?

I'm sure lots of people thought that e-gold would last forever, or that Liberty Reserve would last forever. Yet, if the US passes an *enforceable* law / global treaty against, for example, starting a full node, Bitcoin is over. They will not pass such a law, until it is *enforceable*.

One way to make the law more enforceable, is to drive away the hackers and cypherpunks, so that the project becomes more docile.

Many people know that political 'attack ads' are very effective. But few people know why: the true reason is to manipulate voter turnout by getting some individuals to just 'mentally check out' of the political process. Andreas has already 'mentally checked out' of /r/bitcoin, for example.


> Do you see anything else possibly overtaking bitcoin. If so, what?

I really don't see anything as having a chance. If anything it would be a "compromiser" like Ripple (much less likely after the recent news), or an e-cash managed by a federal bank. I think either its Bitcoin, or nothing.

User avatar
psztorc
AMA
AMA
Posts: 36
Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2015 10:19 pm

Donate BTC of your choice to 1M5tVTtynuqiS7Goq8hbh5UBcxLaa5XQb8

Contact: Website Twitter

Re: I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Fri Dec 18, 2015 4:50 am

> Hi Paul! I don't have a question, I just want to say I love your work.

Thank you!


> The reddit drama has made it painfully obvious that costless discussion is almost completely worthless for deciding the best way forward. Prediction Markets would give a far clearer idea of what the economic consensus really is.

One would certainly hope it would be obvious...lots of people still seem to be in the dark though...

In the past, I complained about /r/bitcoin. But actions speak louder than words, and I kept going back. Now I've started to not even check it at all. Instead I endorse the satirical /r/bitcoinarchy . I think this marks a great opportunity for forum.bitcoin.com .
Last edited by psztorc on Fri Dec 18, 2015 5:13 am, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
psztorc
AMA
AMA
Posts: 36
Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2015 10:19 pm

Donate BTC of your choice to 1M5tVTtynuqiS7Goq8hbh5UBcxLaa5XQb8

Contact: Website Twitter

Re: I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Fri Dec 18, 2015 4:55 am

> What kind of price do you expect for BTC to hit ? [since you are the predictor] and give us time frame ;)

Ah well, my predictions are so great because I just take them straight from markets.

I will say, however, that once the mainstream learns about Sidechains, and Hivemind, I do predict another media hype wave, which I think will do something resembling similar hype waves: 10x up over about a week, then cut in half over a single day.

Xigen_
Posts: 1
Joined: Fri Dec 18, 2015 2:27 pm

Re: I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Fri Dec 18, 2015 2:36 pm

Hi Paul,

Firstly thanks for all your blogging, your writing has been facilitating to read!

A question I've got for you; do you have any rough expectations as to when the first trustless bitcoin sidechain (not federated peg) will become ready for general use?

User avatar
psztorc
AMA
AMA
Posts: 36
Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2015 10:19 pm

Donate BTC of your choice to 1M5tVTtynuqiS7Goq8hbh5UBcxLaa5XQb8

Contact: Website Twitter

Re: I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Fri Dec 18, 2015 7:44 pm

> Firstly thanks for all your blogging, your writing has been facilitating to read!

You're welcome!


> A question I've got for you; do you have any rough expectations as to when the first trustless bitcoin sidechain (not federated peg) will become ready for general use?

Tough question...I would certainly be very surprised and disappointed if we made it to September 1st without one. I would be pleasantly surprised if we had one by February 1st (as there have already been many unexpected delays). Does that help?

The real question is: which will be ready first, the sidechain bridge (for example Drivechain) or Hivemind, Rootstock, Zerocash?

User avatar
Luckdragon69
Posts: 1
Joined: Fri Dec 18, 2015 9:31 pm

Donate BTC of your choice to 1BTbnL7VDZSf37U8Vkp8XurKrcJEBumrFn

Re: I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Fri Dec 18, 2015 9:45 pm

Hi Paul, thanks for convincing me to finally join these forums!

I was recently watching a video by Chris Derose were he had some very cynical comments about Rootstock, Side-Chains, and Etherium. Chris is a part of Counter-Party and so should be considered partial to that project of course.

He was essentially stating that all of these projects will fail. On top of that, I read your article about why Etherium was self-destroying at a game-theory level but Rootstock is not.

Question:
So if there is a fundamental error in Etherium in your opinion, a fundamental error with Rootstock in Chris Derose's opinion; can you shine some light at the differences between Root-stock , Counter-Party, and Etherium? And why there is so much debate about the viability of one over the other?

User avatar
psztorc
AMA
AMA
Posts: 36
Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2015 10:19 pm

Donate BTC of your choice to 1M5tVTtynuqiS7Goq8hbh5UBcxLaa5XQb8

Contact: Website Twitter

Re: I am Paul Sztorc, creator of decentralized Prediction Market concept Hivemind, and other cool things! AMA

Fri Dec 18, 2015 11:49 pm

> Hi Paul, thanks for convincing me to finally join these forums!

I'm sure I played only a small part in that. I mean...can things *get* any crazier out there!?


> I was recently watching a video by Chris Derose were he had some very cynical comments about Rootstock, Side-Chains, and Etherium. Chris is a part of Counter-Party and so should be considered partial to that project of course.

> He was essentially stating that all of these projects will fail. On top of that, I read your article about why Etherium was self-destroying at a game-theory level but Rootstock is not.

Actually I believe that Rootstock is also self-destroying. The generality is core problem (as well as the complete absence of use cases, and overwhelming non-interest in what would make a reliable oracle). I think Rootstock is fine for testing individual specific smart contracts, before they latch on to Bitcoin as sidechains.


> So if there is a fundamental error in Etherium in your opinion, a fundamental error with Rootstock in Chris Derose's opinion; can you shine some light at the differences between Root-stock , Counter-Party, and Etherium? And why there is so much debate about the viability of one over the other?

I think Ethereum's organizational problems can only be ignored for so long. The elevation of the Ethereum concept from "neat experiment" to "hacker superpancea" should be (and was) an insult to anyone. Bitcoin is difficult to understand, especially for people with full time jobs and lives, etc. It is easy to view Litecoin, Ripple, Mastercoin, NXT, Bitshares, and Ethereum as attempts to exploit "the difficulty which people have in understanding Bitcoin" to essentially steal from people. Rootstock and Counterparty, in contrast, did the right thing by just working on and exploring the technology, and not really bothering people until it was conversation-worthy.

In my view, of course, as far as "smart contracts" are concerned, Bitcoin can already do what all three could do. I've challenged someone to offer me a smart contract use-case, since forever. Usually I get blank stares, occasionally someone proposes a third-party-trusting Bitcoin micropayment channel, thinking (mistakenly) that Bitcoin can't do that.

Counterparty has a kind of built-in Namecoin, which may be useful, or may become obsolete. It has also existed for a while, which is an extraordinarily good sign in the tech/Bitcoin world, of course. Chris DeRose is one of the smartest men in Bitcoin, so that's another plus.


> And why there is so much debate about the viability of one over the other?

The concept of "owning" these tokens, I think, kicks people's brains into tribalism overdrive. Each individual has finite wealth, so each percentage point saved in one token (for example the USD) is a percentage point that is NOT saved in all other tokens. This is inherently zero-sum, with no potential for sustainable cooperation.

Return to “AMA - Ask Me Anything”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests