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RaiBlocks AMA Summary!

I posted this under /cryptocurrency and /cryptomarkets as well! Might be less useful under this subreddit... but I'm using it for purposes of helping people become aware of this coin.
Summation of RaiBlocks lead developer AMA. I'm very excited about this coin, and if you're asking why I did this...I'm trying out my AMA consolidating script that I wrote for fun :) I'm interested in seeing what people think about this coin! You can read the responses directly from this link: https://www.reddit.com/RaiBlocks/comments/7ko5l7/colin_lemahieu_founder_and_lead_developer_of/
 
What are your top priorities atm? Both in developing areas itself and in terms of integration?
 
The top priorities right now are:
These basically need to happen in a sequence because each item isn't useful unless the previous one is complete.
 
 
Do you have any plans to have your source code peer reviewed? By peer review I mean sending your source code down to MIT for testing and review.
Where do you see Raiblocks 5-10 years from now? (For instance do you envision people using a Raiblocks mobile phone app to transfer value between each other, or buy stuff at the store?
 
We definitely need peer and code reviews and we're open to anyone doing this. We have ideas for people in universities that want to analyze the whitepaper or code so we'll see what comes of that. In my opinion code security guarantees can only be given with (eyes * time) and we need both.
I'd like to see RaiBlocks adopted as an internet RFC and basically become an ubiquitous background technology like http. I think you're probably right and a mobile app would be the most user-friendly way to do this so people don't need to carry around extra cards in their wallet etc.
 
 
Is there a list of the team readily available? Are there firm plans to expand, and if so, in which directions?
The roadmap indicated a website redesign scheduled for November 2017. Is there an update?
 
We have about 12 people in the core team; about half are code and half are business developers. On the redesigned website we're going to include bios for sure, no one in our team is anonymous. I think we have pretty good coverage of what we need right now, we could always use more people capable of contributing to the core code.
The website design is well underway, we wanted to streamline and add some more things to it so it took longer than originally estimated. It'll looking like after the new year we'll have it ready.
 
 
Would you ever consider renaming the coin to simply "Rai" or any other simplified form other than RaiBlocks?
2. What marketing strategy do you think will push XRB forward from now on as a fully working product. Instant and free, the green coin, "it just works" coin, etc?
3. Regarding security, is "quantum-proofing" a big concern at the moment and how do you guys plan to approach this when the time comes. And how possible would it be for bad actors to successfully implement a 51% attack.
 
  1. Yea there are a few difficulties people have pointed out with our name. People don't know if it's "ray" or "rye". "Blocks" doesn't have a meaning to a lot of people and the name reference might be too esoteric to be meaningful. I'm not prideful so I'm not stuck on a particular name, we'll take a look at what our marketing and business developers say peoples' impressions are and if they have any naming recommendations.
  2. Our marketing strategy is to focus on complete simplicity. Instant and free resonates with enthusiasts and mass adoption will only come when using xrb is absolutely the same experience as using a banking or other payment app. People aren't going to tolerate jargon or confusing workflows when sending or receiving payments.
  3. Quantum computing is going to be an amazing leap for humanity but it's also going to cause a lot of flux in cryptography. The plan I see is the similar to what I did in selecting the cryptographic algorithms we're using right now: look for leaders in academia and industry that have proven implementations and use those as they recommend migration based on computing capability. Quantum vulnerabilities can be an issue in the future but a vulnerable implementation would be an issue right now.
 
 
Hi Colin, lately XRB has been getting frequently compared to and contrasted with Iota. I was hoping that you could give us your thoughts on the differences between the two and what your general vision for the future of Raiblocks is.
 
It's flattering to be compared to IOTA, they have a very talented team building ambitious technology. When looking at design goals I think one thing we're not attempting to approach is transferring a data payload, we're only looking to be a transfer of value.
There are lots of ideas and technology to be developed in the cryptocurrency space and I want RaiBlocks to solve one section of that industry: the transfer of value. I think the best success would be if RaiBlocks was adopted as the global standard for this and crypto efforts could move to non-value-transfer use-cases.
 
 
Do you see XRB becoming the new payment method for commerce. As in, buying coffee, groceries, etc? Do you have plans for combating the HODL mentality so this currency can actually be used in the future of buying and selling?
 
Being a direct transactional payment method is our goal and we're trying to build software that's accessible to everyone to make that happen. I see holding as a speculative tactic anticipating future increases and you're right, it's not in line with day-to-day transactions. I think as market cap levels off to a more consistent value the reason for holding and speculating goes away and people can instead focus on using it as a value exchange.
 
 
Are you planning to expand the RaiBlocks team over the next 12 months? If so, what types of positions are you hoping to fill?
 
Right now we have about 12 people, half core and half business developers. I think this count is good for working on what we're doing right now which is getting wallets and exchanges worked on. Ideally people outside our team will start developing technology around xrb taking advantage of the network effect to build more technology faster than we could internally. That being said we're going to look in a few months to see if there's anything out there people aren't developing that should be and we'll see what people we need to make it happen.
 
 
At what point did you make the decision to make RaiBlocks your full time job? What was the decision making process like?
 
It was after the week where the core team met here in Austin to brainstorm our next steps. I saw how much enthusiasm there was from crypto-veterans with having a working system capable of being scaled up to what's needed for massive adoption and it seemed the risk needed to be taken.
It was hard decision to make, working in the crypto and finance is rough and I like using my leisure time to work on inventions. Of all the projects ideas I have this one seemed to have a high chance of success and the benefits of having a working, decentralized currency would be huge.
 
 
Hi Colin, what prevents great cryptos like XRB from being listed on bigger exchanges?
 
It's good to understand where the biggest headaches for exchanges lie: support tickets, operations, and development. If a technology is different from what they already have, that takes development time. If the software is new and not widely run, that's potential operations time to fix it which results in support tickets and community backlash. Adding BitCoin clones or Ethereum ICO coins is easy because they don't have these associated risks or costs.
 
 
What can the average RaiBlocks-Fan do to help XRB getting adopted / growing / expanding?
 
I think the best thing an average fan could do is word of mouth and telling people about RaiBlocks. More people being aware of it means there's the possibility someone who's never heard of it before would be interested in contributing as a vendor, developer, exchange etc.
Good advertising or marketing will never be able to reach everyone as well as someone reaching out within their own network.
 
 
Ray or Rye?
 
Ray hehe. It comes from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rai_stones Lots of people don't know the answer though >_<
 
 
Are you looking at incorperating a datamarket like iota in the future? Given the speed of the network a data exchange for highly accurate sensors could be a game changer.
Further more, are there any plans to increase the Dev team in the future? I read on the FAQ you'd like RaiBlocks to be somewhat of a protocol which is a huge ambition. A Dev from say the Mozilla foundation or other could further cement this ambitious project.
 
Transmitting data payloads is something we probably won't pursue. The concern is adding more features like this could cause us to make decisions that compromise the primary focus points of low-cost and speed for transferring value.
We can add people to the dev team though I think we'll get the most traction by teaching teams in these other organization how to use RaiBlocks so they can be the experts on the subject in their companies.
 
 
Does the actual RaiBlocks version require "Each node in the network must be aware of all transactions as they occur" part? This was in the old white paper and is asked here:
https://www.reddit.com/RaiBlocks/comments/7ksl81/some_questions_regarding_raiblocks_consensus/?st=jbdmgagc&sh=d1c93cca
 
If a node wants to independently know the balances of all accounts in the system, it must at a minimum have storage to hold accounts and all their balances. In order to know all balances it must either listen to transactions as they're happening or bootstrap from someone else to catch up as what happens on startup.
 
 
There is no incentive to run nodes. Some people will do it because it is cheap as fuck (as I read an raspberry pie can run it). But I think not many people will do it.
1. How important are the nodes in terms of further scaling?
2. On which network conditions where the 7000 transactions met?
3. What happens if the transactions per day tenfolds but the nodes don't?
4. How much better will Rai scale if someone sets up, lets say, 100 nodes with awesome hardware and network?
5. How many nodes could be enough for visa level scaling?
6. Which further improvements can be made for Rai IF there needs to be other improvements than setting up new nodes? Are there other concepts like 2nd layer solutions planned?
7. How will Rai defend network attacks?
I know there is an PoW part. But since there a also large attacks on high cap coins on which people invest millions of $ to congest a network..Is it possible that the Rai network will be unusable for several days because of this?
 
I think the out-of-protocol incentives to running a node are under-referenced yet I see them as the primary driving factor for participating as a whole. Node rewards come at the expense of other network participants and in this closed loop the incentives aren't enough to keep a cryptocurrency alive. Long-term there needs to be a system-level comparative advantage to what people are already using for a transfer of value. If someone is using xrb and it saves them hundreds or thousands of dollars per month in fees and customer irritation in delayed payments, they have a direct monetary incentive to using xrb and a monetary incentive in the health of the system.
1) More nodes provides transaction and bootstrapping redundancy. More representatives provides decentralization.
2) The 7k TPS was a profile how fast commodity hardware could eat transactions. All of the real-world limits are going to be something hardware related, either bandwidth, IO, or CPU.
3) The scaling is more related to the hardware the nodes are using rather than the node count. If there was 10x increase in transactions it would use 10x the bandwidth and IO as nodes observe transactions happening.
4) If someone made 100 representative nodes the network would be far more decentralized though the tx throughput would be unchanged since that's a per-node requirement.
5) Scaling to Visa will have high bandwidth and IO requirements on representatives associated with doing 10k IOPS. Datacenter and business class hardware will have to be enough to handle the load.
6) Second layer solutions are always an option and I think a lot of people will use them for fraud protection and insurance. Our primary focus is to make the 1st layer as efficient and high speed as possible so a 2nd layer isn't needed for daily transactions.
7) Defending against network attacks will be an ongoing thing, people like breaking the network for lulz or monetary gain i.e. competing cryptos. If there are attacks we haven't defended against or considered it'll be a matter of getting capable people to fix issues.
 
 
Are you open to changes to the name? (Rai)
What are your plans with regards to marketing?
 
I'm open to it, people get confused on ray/rye pronunciation, not the greatest first impression.
As far as timing I think marketing works best after a more user friendly wallet and integration in to more exchanges otherwise we're sending traffic to something people can't use. We're going to start by focusing on the initial adopters which will likely be enthusiasts and going forward work on the next set of users that aren't enthusiasts but want to drive savings for their business through lower payment processing costs.
 
 
A recent tweet(https://twitter.com/VitalikButerin/status/942961006614945792) from Vitalik Buterin. Could this be a case with testing the scalability of RaiBlocks as well and in reality we wouldn't come close to 7000tx/s?
 
I think he's definitely right, a lot of the TPS numbers are synthetic benchmarks usually on one system. The biggest thing hindering TPS are protocol-specific limits like hard caps or high contention design. The next biggest thing will be bandwidth and then disk IO. Some of these limits can be improved by profiling and fixing code instead of actual limits in the hardware.
We want to get better, real world numbers but our general opinion is that the RaiBlocks protocol is going to be limited by hardware, rather than design.
 
 
Are you planning to add a fiat gateway to the main website and mobile wallet?
 
If we can make it happen for sure, that seems like a very user-focused feature people would want.
The difficulty at least in the US is the money-transmitter licenses which are hard to obtain. More than likely if this functionality was added it'd be a partnership with an established financial company that has procedures in place to operate within countries' regulations.
 
 
I saw a post on /iota that claims that their quantum resistance is a main benefit over raiblocks. Can you go into detail about this? explain any plans you have to let XRB persevere through upcoming quatum revolution?
 
I think everyone with cryptography in their programs is keeping an eye on quantum cryptography because we're all in the same boat. I don't have cryptanalysis credentials so I didn't feel comfortable building an implementation and instead chose to use one off-the-shelf from someone with assuring credentials.
There are some big companies that have made small mistakes that blow up the usefulness of the entire algorithm, it's incredibly easy to do. https://arstechnica.com/gaming/2010/12/ps3-hacked-through-poor-implementation-of-cryptography/
 
 
Hello Colin, is any security audit to the source code planned?
 
We don't have one contracted though both internally and externally this is an important thing people want completed.
 
 
Do you have plans to radically change the interface of the desktop wallet, and to develop a universal, cross-platform, clean and simple UX design for the wallet? This will be huge for mass adoption in my humble opinion
 
I completely agree, we do plan on completely redoing the desktop wallet, both from a UX standpoint and maintainability so UI code doesn't need to be in C++. This could also remove out dependency on QT which is the least permissive license in the code right now.
I write code better than I design GUIs ;)
 
 
It seems like Raiblocks is aiming to be a true currency with it's lacking of transaction fees and fast confirmation times, which is great! If Raiblocks can add some kind of support for privacy then I think it got the whole picture figured out in terms of being "digital cash". Do you currently have any plans to implement privacy features into RaiBlocks?
If Raiblocks is unable to do this, it will still be a straight improvement over things like LTC which are currently being used as currency, but I don't think it will be able to become THE cryptocurrency without privacy features.
 
I love the concept of privacy in the network and it's a hard thing to do right. Any solution used would need to be compatible with our balance-weighted-voting method which means at least we'd have to know how much weight a representative has even if we're hiding actual account balances.
To be fully anonymous it would have to be hide accounts, amounts, endpoints, and also timing information; with advanced network analysis the timing is the hardest thing to hide. Hopefully some day we can figure out an efficient privacy solution though the immediate problem we can solve is making a transactional cryptocurrency so we're focusing on that.
 
 
Could you provide an analysis on the flaws of RaiBlocks? Is it in any way, shape, or form at a disadvantage compared to a blockchain based ledger like bitcoin? There has to be drawbacks, but I haven’t found any.
Do you plan on expanding the dev team and establishing a foundation? Also, how much money is in the development pool?
 
One drawback is to handle is our chain-per-account model and asynchronous updates it takes more code and design. This means instead of one top-block hash for everything there's one for each account. This gives us the power of wait-free asynchronous transactions at the cost of simplicity.
After we finish up things like the wallet, website, and exchange integration we'll be looking at seeing what dev resources we need to build tech if no one else is already working on a particular thing. We have about 6 million XRB right now so we've made the existing dev funds go a long way. If something expensive to build came along and dev funds wouldn't cut it we could look at some sort of external funding.
 
 
How big of a problem is PoW for exchanges and what are potential solutions?
 
Considering how much exchanges stand to make through commission I don't see the cost as a barrier, it's just an abnormal technology request compared to other cryptocurrencies.
We're working on providing a service exchanges can use in the interim until they set up their own infrastructure to generate the work. Other options are containers people can use on cloud services to get the infrastructure they need until they want to invest in their own.
 
 
It's my understanding that since everything works asynchronously, in the case of double spending there is a chance a merchant would receive the block that would be later invalidated and have it shown in it's wallet, even if a little later (1 minute?) the amount would correct when the delegates vote that block invalid. Is there any mechanism to avoid this? Maybe tag the transactions in the wallet as "confirming" and then "confirmed" after that minute? Is there actually any certain way for a wallet to know, in a deterministic/programable way, at what moment a transaction is 100% legit? (for example if the delegates are DoS'ed I guess that minute could be much longer). I know this is an improbable case, but still...
 
Yea you're hitting a good point, the consensus algorithm in the node is designed to wait for the incoming transaction to settle before accepting it in to the local chain for the exact reason you listed, if their transaction were to be rolled back the local account would be rolled back as well.
We can trend the current weight of all representatives that are online and voting and make sure we have >50% of the vote weight accounted for before considering it settled.
 
 
Hey Colin, will you eventually have support for a Trezor or other hard wallet?
 
Yea we'll definitely work with companies like Trezor that are interested in being a hardware wallet for xrb. It's just a matter of making sure they support the signing algorithms and integrating with their API.
 
EDIT: I'm getting a lot of messages asking me how to buy XRB. I used this guide which was very helpful: https://www.reddit.com/RaiBlocks/comments/7i0co0/the_definitive_guide_to_buying_and_storing/
In short -- buy BTC on coinbase, open up an account on bitgrail, transfer that BTC from coinbase to bitgrail, then trade your BTC for XRB. It's a pain right now because it's such a new coin, but soon it will be listed on more exchanges, and hopefully on things like shapeshift/changelly. After that it will be much easier... but until then, the inconvenience is what we have to pay in order to get into XRB while its still early.
EDIT: BAD SCRIPT, BAD!
submitted by atriaxx to RaiBlocks [link] [comments]

RaiBlocks AMA Summation!

Summation of RaiBlocks lead developer AMA. I'm very excited about this coin, and if you're asking why I did this...I'm trying out my AMA consolidating script that I wrote for fun :) I'm interested in seeing what people think about this coin! You can read the responses directly from this link: https://www.reddit.com/RaiBlocks/comments/7ko5l7/colin_lemahieu_founder_and_lead_developer_of/
 
What are your top priorities atm? Both in developing areas itself and in terms of integration?
 
The top priorities right now are:
These basically need to happen in a sequence because each item isn't useful unless the previous one is complete.
 
 
Do you have any plans to have your source code peer reviewed? By peer review I mean sending your source code down to MIT for testing and review.
Where do you see Raiblocks 5-10 years from now? (For instance do you envision people using a Raiblocks mobile phone app to transfer value between each other, or buy stuff at the store?
 
We definitely need peer and code reviews and we're open to anyone doing this. We have ideas for people in universities that want to analyze the whitepaper or code so we'll see what comes of that. In my opinion code security guarantees can only be given with (eyes * time) and we need both.
I'd like to see RaiBlocks adopted as an internet RFC and basically become an ubiquitous background technology like http. I think you're probably right and a mobile app would be the most user-friendly way to do this so people don't need to carry around extra cards in their wallet etc.
 
 
Is there a list of the team readily available? Are there firm plans to expand, and if so, in which directions?
The roadmap indicated a website redesign scheduled for November 2017. Is there an update?
 
We have about 12 people in the core team; about half are code and half are business developers. On the redesigned website we're going to include bios for sure, no one in our team is anonymous. I think we have pretty good coverage of what we need right now, we could always use more people capable of contributing to the core code.
The website design is well underway, we wanted to streamline and add some more things to it so it took longer than originally estimated. It'll looking like after the new year we'll have it ready.
 
 
Would you ever consider renaming the coin to simply "Rai" or any other simplified form other than RaiBlocks?
2. What marketing strategy do you think will push XRB forward from now on as a fully working product. Instant and free, the green coin, "it just works" coin, etc?
3. Regarding security, is "quantum-proofing" a big concern at the moment and how do you guys plan to approach this when the time comes. And how possible would it be for bad actors to successfully implement a 51% attack.
 
  1. Yea there are a few difficulties people have pointed out with our name. People don't know if it's "ray" or "rye". "Blocks" doesn't have a meaning to a lot of people and the name reference might be too esoteric to be meaningful. I'm not prideful so I'm not stuck on a particular name, we'll take a look at what our marketing and business developers say peoples' impressions are and if they have any naming recommendations.
  2. Our marketing strategy is to focus on complete simplicity. Instant and free resonates with enthusiasts and mass adoption will only come when using xrb is absolutely the same experience as using a banking or other payment app. People aren't going to tolerate jargon or confusing workflows when sending or receiving payments.
  3. Quantum computing is going to be an amazing leap for humanity but it's also going to cause a lot of flux in cryptography. The plan I see is the similar to what I did in selecting the cryptographic algorithms we're using right now: look for leaders in academia and industry that have proven implementations and use those as they recommend migration based on computing capability. Quantum vulnerabilities can be an issue in the future but a vulnerable implementation would be an issue right now.
 
 
Hi Colin, lately XRB has been getting frequently compared to and contrasted with Iota. I was hoping that you could give us your thoughts on the differences between the two and what your general vision for the future of Raiblocks is.
 
It's flattering to be compared to IOTA, they have a very talented team building ambitious technology. When looking at design goals I think one thing we're not attempting to approach is transferring a data payload, we're only looking to be a transfer of value.
There are lots of ideas and technology to be developed in the cryptocurrency space and I want RaiBlocks to solve one section of that industry: the transfer of value. I think the best success would be if RaiBlocks was adopted as the global standard for this and crypto efforts could move to non-value-transfer use-cases.
 
 
Do you see XRB becoming the new payment method for commerce. As in, buying coffee, groceries, etc? Do you have plans for combating the HODL mentality so this currency can actually be used in the future of buying and selling?
 
Being a direct transactional payment method is our goal and we're trying to build software that's accessible to everyone to make that happen. I see holding as a speculative tactic anticipating future increases and you're right, it's not in line with day-to-day transactions. I think as market cap levels off to a more consistent value the reason for holding and speculating goes away and people can instead focus on using it as a value exchange.
 
 
Are you planning to expand the RaiBlocks team over the next 12 months? If so, what types of positions are you hoping to fill?
 
Right now we have about 12 people, half core and half business developers. I think this count is good for working on what we're doing right now which is getting wallets and exchanges worked on. Ideally people outside our team will start developing technology around xrb taking advantage of the network effect to build more technology faster than we could internally. That being said we're going to look in a few months to see if there's anything out there people aren't developing that should be and we'll see what people we need to make it happen.
 
 
At what point did you make the decision to make RaiBlocks your full time job? What was the decision making process like?
 
It was after the week where the core team met here in Austin to brainstorm our next steps. I saw how much enthusiasm there was from crypto-veterans with having a working system capable of being scaled up to what's needed for massive adoption and it seemed the risk needed to be taken.
It was hard decision to make, working in the crypto and finance is rough and I like using my leisure time to work on inventions. Of all the projects ideas I have this one seemed to have a high chance of success and the benefits of having a working, decentralized currency would be huge.
 
 
Hi Colin, what prevents great cryptos like XRB from being listed on bigger exchanges?
 
It's good to understand where the biggest headaches for exchanges lie: support tickets, operations, and development. If a technology is different from what they already have, that takes development time. If the software is new and not widely run, that's potential operations time to fix it which results in support tickets and community backlash. Adding BitCoin clones or Ethereum ICO coins is easy because they don't have these associated risks or costs.
 
 
What can the average RaiBlocks-Fan do to help XRB getting adopted / growing / expanding?
 
I think the best thing an average fan could do is word of mouth and telling people about RaiBlocks. More people being aware of it means there's the possibility someone who's never heard of it before would be interested in contributing as a vendor, developer, exchange etc.
Good advertising or marketing will never be able to reach everyone as well as someone reaching out within their own network.
 
 
Ray or Rye?
 
Ray hehe. It comes from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rai_stones Lots of people don't know the answer though >_<
 
 
Are you looking at incorperating a datamarket like iota in the future? Given the speed of the network a data exchange for highly accurate sensors could be a game changer.
Further more, are there any plans to increase the Dev team in the future? I read on the FAQ you'd like RaiBlocks to be somewhat of a protocol which is a huge ambition. A Dev from say the Mozilla foundation or other could further cement this ambitious project.
 
Transmitting data payloads is something we probably won't pursue. The concern is adding more features like this could cause us to make decisions that compromise the primary focus points of low-cost and speed for transferring value.
We can add people to the dev team though I think we'll get the most traction by teaching teams in these other organization how to use RaiBlocks so they can be the experts on the subject in their companies.
 
 
Does the actual RaiBlocks version require "Each node in the network must be aware of all transactions as they occur" part? This was in the old white paper and is asked here:
https://www.reddit.com/RaiBlocks/comments/7ksl81/some_questions_regarding_raiblocks_consensus/?st=jbdmgagc&sh=d1c93cca
 
If a node wants to independently know the balances of all accounts in the system, it must at a minimum have storage to hold accounts and all their balances. In order to know all balances it must either listen to transactions as they're happening or bootstrap from someone else to catch up as what happens on startup.
 
 
There is no incentive to run nodes. Some people will do it because it is cheap as fuck (as I read an raspberry pie can run it). But I think not many people will do it.
1. How important are the nodes in terms of further scaling?
2. On which network conditions where the 7000 transactions met?
3. What happens if the transactions per day tenfolds but the nodes don't?
4. How much better will Rai scale if someone sets up, lets say, 100 nodes with awesome hardware and network?
5. How many nodes could be enough for visa level scaling?
6. Which further improvements can be made for Rai IF there needs to be other improvements than setting up new nodes? Are there other concepts like 2nd layer solutions planned?
7. How will Rai defend network attacks?
I know there is an PoW part. But since there a also large attacks on high cap coins on which people invest millions of $ to congest a network..Is it possible that the Rai network will be unusable for several days because of this?
 
I think the out-of-protocol incentives to running a node are under-referenced yet I see them as the primary driving factor for participating as a whole. Node rewards come at the expense of other network participants and in this closed loop the incentives aren't enough to keep a cryptocurrency alive. Long-term there needs to be a system-level comparative advantage to what people are already using for a transfer of value. If someone is using xrb and it saves them hundreds or thousands of dollars per month in fees and customer irritation in delayed payments, they have a direct monetary incentive to using xrb and a monetary incentive in the health of the system.
1) More nodes provides transaction and bootstrapping redundancy. More representatives provides decentralization.
2) The 7k TPS was a profile how fast commodity hardware could eat transactions. All of the real-world limits are going to be something hardware related, either bandwidth, IO, or CPU.
3) The scaling is more related to the hardware the nodes are using rather than the node count. If there was 10x increase in transactions it would use 10x the bandwidth and IO as nodes observe transactions happening.
4) If someone made 100 representative nodes the network would be far more decentralized though the tx throughput would be unchanged since that's a per-node requirement.
5) Scaling to Visa will have high bandwidth and IO requirements on representatives associated with doing 10k IOPS. Datacenter and business class hardware will have to be enough to handle the load.
6) Second layer solutions are always an option and I think a lot of people will use them for fraud protection and insurance. Our primary focus is to make the 1st layer as efficient and high speed as possible so a 2nd layer isn't needed for daily transactions.
7) Defending against network attacks will be an ongoing thing, people like breaking the network for lulz or monetary gain i.e. competing cryptos. If there are attacks we haven't defended against or considered it'll be a matter of getting capable people to fix issues.
 
 
Are you open to changes to the name? (Rai)
What are your plans with regards to marketing?
 
I'm open to it, people get confused on ray/rye pronunciation, not the greatest first impression.
As far as timing I think marketing works best after a more user friendly wallet and integration in to more exchanges otherwise we're sending traffic to something people can't use. We're going to start by focusing on the initial adopters which will likely be enthusiasts and going forward work on the next set of users that aren't enthusiasts but want to drive savings for their business through lower payment processing costs.
 
 
A recent tweet(https://twitter.com/VitalikButerin/status/942961006614945792) from Vitalik Buterin. Could this be a case with testing the scalability of RaiBlocks as well and in reality we wouldn't come close to 7000tx/s?
 
I think he's definitely right, a lot of the TPS numbers are synthetic benchmarks usually on one system. The biggest thing hindering TPS are protocol-specific limits like hard caps or high contention design. The next biggest thing will be bandwidth and then disk IO. Some of these limits can be improved by profiling and fixing code instead of actual limits in the hardware.
We want to get better, real world numbers but our general opinion is that the RaiBlocks protocol is going to be limited by hardware, rather than design.
 
 
Are you planning to add a fiat gateway to the main website and mobile wallet?
 
If we can make it happen for sure, that seems like a very user-focused feature people would want.
The difficulty at least in the US is the money-transmitter licenses which are hard to obtain. More than likely if this functionality was added it'd be a partnership with an established financial company that has procedures in place to operate within countries' regulations.
 
 
I saw a post on /iota that claims that their quantum resistance is a main benefit over raiblocks. Can you go into detail about this? explain any plans you have to let XRB persevere through upcoming quatum revolution?
 
I think everyone with cryptography in their programs is keeping an eye on quantum cryptography because we're all in the same boat. I don't have cryptanalysis credentials so I didn't feel comfortable building an implementation and instead chose to use one off-the-shelf from someone with assuring credentials.
There are some big companies that have made small mistakes that blow up the usefulness of the entire algorithm, it's incredibly easy to do. https://arstechnica.com/gaming/2010/12/ps3-hacked-through-poor-implementation-of-cryptography/
 
 
Hello Colin, is any security audit to the source code planned?
 
We don't have one contracted though both internally and externally this is an important thing people want completed.
 
 
Do you have plans to radically change the interface of the desktop wallet, and to develop a universal, cross-platform, clean and simple UX design for the wallet? This will be huge for mass adoption in my humble opinion
 
I completely agree, we do plan on completely redoing the desktop wallet, both from a UX standpoint and maintainability so UI code doesn't need to be in C++. This could also remove out dependency on QT which is the least permissive license in the code right now.
I write code better than I design GUIs ;)
 
 
It seems like Raiblocks is aiming to be a true currency with it's lacking of transaction fees and fast confirmation times, which is great! If Raiblocks can add some kind of support for privacy then I think it got the whole picture figured out in terms of being "digital cash". Do you currently have any plans to implement privacy features into RaiBlocks?
If Raiblocks is unable to do this, it will still be a straight improvement over things like LTC which are currently being used as currency, but I don't think it will be able to become THE cryptocurrency without privacy features.
 
I love the concept of privacy in the network and it's a hard thing to do right. Any solution used would need to be compatible with our balance-weighted-voting method which means at least we'd have to know how much weight a representative has even if we're hiding actual account balances.
To be fully anonymous it would have to be hide accounts, amounts, endpoints, and also timing information; with advanced network analysis the timing is the hardest thing to hide. Hopefully some day we can figure out an efficient privacy solution though the immediate problem we can solve is making a transactional cryptocurrency so we're focusing on that.
 
 
Could you provide an analysis on the flaws of RaiBlocks? Is it in any way, shape, or form at a disadvantage compared to a blockchain based ledger like bitcoin? There has to be drawbacks, but I haven’t found any.
Do you plan on expanding the dev team and establishing a foundation? Also, how much money is in the development pool?
 
One drawback is to handle is our chain-per-account model and asynchronous updates it takes more code and design. This means instead of one top-block hash for everything there's one for each account. This gives us the power of wait-free asynchronous transactions at the cost of simplicity.
After we finish up things like the wallet, website, and exchange integration we'll be looking at seeing what dev resources we need to build tech if no one else is already working on a particular thing. We have about 6 million XRB right now so we've made the existing dev funds go a long way. If something expensive to build came along and dev funds wouldn't cut it we could look at some sort of external funding.
 
 
How big of a problem is PoW for exchanges and what are potential solutions?
 
Considering how much exchanges stand to make through commission I don't see the cost as a barrier, it's just an abnormal technology request compared to other cryptocurrencies.
We're working on providing a service exchanges can use in the interim until they set up their own infrastructure to generate the work. Other options are containers people can use on cloud services to get the infrastructure they need until they want to invest in their own.
 
 
It's my understanding that since everything works asynchronously, in the case of double spending there is a chance a merchant would receive the block that would be later invalidated and have it shown in it's wallet, even if a little later (1 minute?) the amount would correct when the delegates vote that block invalid. Is there any mechanism to avoid this? Maybe tag the transactions in the wallet as "confirming" and then "confirmed" after that minute? Is there actually any certain way for a wallet to know, in a deterministic/programable way, at what moment a transaction is 100% legit? (for example if the delegates are DoS'ed I guess that minute could be much longer). I know this is an improbable case, but still...
 
Yea you're hitting a good point, the consensus algorithm in the node is designed to wait for the incoming transaction to settle before accepting it in to the local chain for the exact reason you listed, if their transaction were to be rolled back the local account would be rolled back as well.
We can trend the current weight of all representatives that are online and voting and make sure we have >50% of the vote weight accounted for before considering it settled.
 
 
Hey Colin, will you eventually have support for a Trezor or other hard wallet?
 
Yea we'll definitely work with companies like Trezor that are interested in being a hardware wallet for xrb. It's just a matter of making sure they support the signing algorithms and integrating with their API.
 
EDIT: I'm getting a lot of messages asking me how to buy XRB. I used this guide which was very helpful: https://www.reddit.com/RaiBlocks/comments/7i0co0/the_definitive_guide_to_buying_and_storing/
In short -- buy BTC on coinbase, open up an account on bitgrail, transfer that BTC from coinbase to bitgrail, then trade your BTC for XRB. It's a pain right now because it's such a new coin, but soon it will be listed on more exchanges, and hopefully on things like shapeshift/changelly. After that it will be much easier... but until then, the inconvenience is what we have to pay in order to get into XRB while its still early.
EDIT: BAD SCRIPT, BAD!
submitted by atriaxx to CryptoMarkets [link] [comments]

RaiBlocks AMA Summary!

Summation of RaiBlocks lead developer AMA. I'm very excited about this coin, and if you're asking why I did this...I'm trying out my AMA consolidating script that I wrote for fun :) I'm interested in seeing what people think about this coin! You can read the responses directly from this link: https://www.reddit.com/RaiBlocks/comments/7ko5l7/colin_lemahieu_founder_and_lead_developer_of/
 
What are your top priorities atm? Both in developing areas itself and in terms of integration?
 
The top priorities right now are:
These basically need to happen in a sequence because each item isn't useful unless the previous one is complete.
 
 
Do you have any plans to have your source code peer reviewed? By peer review I mean sending your source code down to MIT for testing and review.
Where do you see Raiblocks 5-10 years from now? (For instance do you envision people using a Raiblocks mobile phone app to transfer value between each other, or buy stuff at the store?
 
We definitely need peer and code reviews and we're open to anyone doing this. We have ideas for people in universities that want to analyze the whitepaper or code so we'll see what comes of that. In my opinion code security guarantees can only be given with (eyes * time) and we need both.
I'd like to see RaiBlocks adopted as an internet RFC and basically become an ubiquitous background technology like http. I think you're probably right and a mobile app would be the most user-friendly way to do this so people don't need to carry around extra cards in their wallet etc.
 
 
Is there a list of the team readily available? Are there firm plans to expand, and if so, in which directions?
The roadmap indicated a website redesign scheduled for November 2017. Is there an update?
 
We have about 12 people in the core team; about half are code and half are business developers. On the redesigned website we're going to include bios for sure, no one in our team is anonymous. I think we have pretty good coverage of what we need right now, we could always use more people capable of contributing to the core code.
The website design is well underway, we wanted to streamline and add some more things to it so it took longer than originally estimated. It'll looking like after the new year we'll have it ready.
 
 
Would you ever consider renaming the coin to simply "Rai" or any other simplified form other than RaiBlocks?
2. What marketing strategy do you think will push XRB forward from now on as a fully working product. Instant and free, the green coin, "it just works" coin, etc?
3. Regarding security, is "quantum-proofing" a big concern at the moment and how do you guys plan to approach this when the time comes. And how possible would it be for bad actors to successfully implement a 51% attack.
 
  1. Yea there are a few difficulties people have pointed out with our name. People don't know if it's "ray" or "rye". "Blocks" doesn't have a meaning to a lot of people and the name reference might be too esoteric to be meaningful. I'm not prideful so I'm not stuck on a particular name, we'll take a look at what our marketing and business developers say peoples' impressions are and if they have any naming recommendations.
  2. Our marketing strategy is to focus on complete simplicity. Instant and free resonates with enthusiasts and mass adoption will only come when using xrb is absolutely the same experience as using a banking or other payment app. People aren't going to tolerate jargon or confusing workflows when sending or receiving payments.
  3. Quantum computing is going to be an amazing leap for humanity but it's also going to cause a lot of flux in cryptography. The plan I see is the similar to what I did in selecting the cryptographic algorithms we're using right now: look for leaders in academia and industry that have proven implementations and use those as they recommend migration based on computing capability. Quantum vulnerabilities can be an issue in the future but a vulnerable implementation would be an issue right now.
 
 
Hi Colin, lately XRB has been getting frequently compared to and contrasted with Iota. I was hoping that you could give us your thoughts on the differences between the two and what your general vision for the future of Raiblocks is.
 
It's flattering to be compared to IOTA, they have a very talented team building ambitious technology. When looking at design goals I think one thing we're not attempting to approach is transferring a data payload, we're only looking to be a transfer of value.
There are lots of ideas and technology to be developed in the cryptocurrency space and I want RaiBlocks to solve one section of that industry: the transfer of value. I think the best success would be if RaiBlocks was adopted as the global standard for this and crypto efforts could move to non-value-transfer use-cases.
 
 
Do you see XRB becoming the new payment method for commerce. As in, buying coffee, groceries, etc? Do you have plans for combating the HODL mentality so this currency can actually be used in the future of buying and selling?
 
Being a direct transactional payment method is our goal and we're trying to build software that's accessible to everyone to make that happen. I see holding as a speculative tactic anticipating future increases and you're right, it's not in line with day-to-day transactions. I think as market cap levels off to a more consistent value the reason for holding and speculating goes away and people can instead focus on using it as a value exchange.
 
 
Are you planning to expand the RaiBlocks team over the next 12 months? If so, what types of positions are you hoping to fill?
 
Right now we have about 12 people, half core and half business developers. I think this count is good for working on what we're doing right now which is getting wallets and exchanges worked on. Ideally people outside our team will start developing technology around xrb taking advantage of the network effect to build more technology faster than we could internally. That being said we're going to look in a few months to see if there's anything out there people aren't developing that should be and we'll see what people we need to make it happen.
 
 
At what point did you make the decision to make RaiBlocks your full time job? What was the decision making process like?
 
It was after the week where the core team met here in Austin to brainstorm our next steps. I saw how much enthusiasm there was from crypto-veterans with having a working system capable of being scaled up to what's needed for massive adoption and it seemed the risk needed to be taken.
It was hard decision to make, working in the crypto and finance is rough and I like using my leisure time to work on inventions. Of all the projects ideas I have this one seemed to have a high chance of success and the benefits of having a working, decentralized currency would be huge.
 
 
Hi Colin, what prevents great cryptos like XRB from being listed on bigger exchanges?
 
It's good to understand where the biggest headaches for exchanges lie: support tickets, operations, and development. If a technology is different from what they already have, that takes development time. If the software is new and not widely run, that's potential operations time to fix it which results in support tickets and community backlash. Adding BitCoin clones or Ethereum ICO coins is easy because they don't have these associated risks or costs.
 
 
What can the average RaiBlocks-Fan do to help XRB getting adopted / growing / expanding?
 
I think the best thing an average fan could do is word of mouth and telling people about RaiBlocks. More people being aware of it means there's the possibility someone who's never heard of it before would be interested in contributing as a vendor, developer, exchange etc.
Good advertising or marketing will never be able to reach everyone as well as someone reaching out within their own network.
 
 
Ray or Rye?
 
Ray hehe. It comes from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rai_stones Lots of people don't know the answer though >_<
 
 
Are you looking at incorperating a datamarket like iota in the future? Given the speed of the network a data exchange for highly accurate sensors could be a game changer.
Further more, are there any plans to increase the Dev team in the future? I read on the FAQ you'd like RaiBlocks to be somewhat of a protocol which is a huge ambition. A Dev from say the Mozilla foundation or other could further cement this ambitious project.
 
Transmitting data payloads is something we probably won't pursue. The concern is adding more features like this could cause us to make decisions that compromise the primary focus points of low-cost and speed for transferring value.
We can add people to the dev team though I think we'll get the most traction by teaching teams in these other organization how to use RaiBlocks so they can be the experts on the subject in their companies.
 
 
Does the actual RaiBlocks version require "Each node in the network must be aware of all transactions as they occur" part? This was in the old white paper and is asked here:
https://www.reddit.com/RaiBlocks/comments/7ksl81/some_questions_regarding_raiblocks_consensus/?st=jbdmgagc&sh=d1c93cca
 
If a node wants to independently know the balances of all accounts in the system, it must at a minimum have storage to hold accounts and all their balances. In order to know all balances it must either listen to transactions as they're happening or bootstrap from someone else to catch up as what happens on startup.
 
 
There is no incentive to run nodes. Some people will do it because it is cheap as fuck (as I read an raspberry pie can run it). But I think not many people will do it.
1. How important are the nodes in terms of further scaling?
2. On which network conditions where the 7000 transactions met?
3. What happens if the transactions per day tenfolds but the nodes don't?
4. How much better will Rai scale if someone sets up, lets say, 100 nodes with awesome hardware and network?
5. How many nodes could be enough for visa level scaling?
6. Which further improvements can be made for Rai IF there needs to be other improvements than setting up new nodes? Are there other concepts like 2nd layer solutions planned?
7. How will Rai defend network attacks?
I know there is an PoW part. But since there a also large attacks on high cap coins on which people invest millions of $ to congest a network..Is it possible that the Rai network will be unusable for several days because of this?
 
I think the out-of-protocol incentives to running a node are under-referenced yet I see them as the primary driving factor for participating as a whole. Node rewards come at the expense of other network participants and in this closed loop the incentives aren't enough to keep a cryptocurrency alive. Long-term there needs to be a system-level comparative advantage to what people are already using for a transfer of value. If someone is using xrb and it saves them hundreds or thousands of dollars per month in fees and customer irritation in delayed payments, they have a direct monetary incentive to using xrb and a monetary incentive in the health of the system.
1) More nodes provides transaction and bootstrapping redundancy. More representatives provides decentralization.
2) The 7k TPS was a profile how fast commodity hardware could eat transactions. All of the real-world limits are going to be something hardware related, either bandwidth, IO, or CPU.
3) The scaling is more related to the hardware the nodes are using rather than the node count. If there was 10x increase in transactions it would use 10x the bandwidth and IO as nodes observe transactions happening.
4) If someone made 100 representative nodes the network would be far more decentralized though the tx throughput would be unchanged since that's a per-node requirement.
5) Scaling to Visa will have high bandwidth and IO requirements on representatives associated with doing 10k IOPS. Datacenter and business class hardware will have to be enough to handle the load.
6) Second layer solutions are always an option and I think a lot of people will use them for fraud protection and insurance. Our primary focus is to make the 1st layer as efficient and high speed as possible so a 2nd layer isn't needed for daily transactions.
7) Defending against network attacks will be an ongoing thing, people like breaking the network for lulz or monetary gain i.e. competing cryptos. If there are attacks we haven't defended against or considered it'll be a matter of getting capable people to fix issues.
 
 
Are you open to changes to the name? (Rai)
What are your plans with regards to marketing?
 
I'm open to it, people get confused on ray/rye pronunciation, not the greatest first impression.
As far as timing I think marketing works best after a more user friendly wallet and integration in to more exchanges otherwise we're sending traffic to something people can't use. We're going to start by focusing on the initial adopters which will likely be enthusiasts and going forward work on the next set of users that aren't enthusiasts but want to drive savings for their business through lower payment processing costs.
 
 
A recent tweet(https://twitter.com/VitalikButerin/status/942961006614945792) from Vitalik Buterin. Could this be a case with testing the scalability of RaiBlocks as well and in reality we wouldn't come close to 7000tx/s?
 
I think he's definitely right, a lot of the TPS numbers are synthetic benchmarks usually on one system. The biggest thing hindering TPS are protocol-specific limits like hard caps or high contention design. The next biggest thing will be bandwidth and then disk IO. Some of these limits can be improved by profiling and fixing code instead of actual limits in the hardware.
We want to get better, real world numbers but our general opinion is that the RaiBlocks protocol is going to be limited by hardware, rather than design.
 
 
Are you planning to add a fiat gateway to the main website and mobile wallet?
 
If we can make it happen for sure, that seems like a very user-focused feature people would want.
The difficulty at least in the US is the money-transmitter licenses which are hard to obtain. More than likely if this functionality was added it'd be a partnership with an established financial company that has procedures in place to operate within countries' regulations.
 
 
I saw a post on /iota that claims that their quantum resistance is a main benefit over raiblocks. Can you go into detail about this? explain any plans you have to let XRB persevere through upcoming quatum revolution?
 
I think everyone with cryptography in their programs is keeping an eye on quantum cryptography because we're all in the same boat. I don't have cryptanalysis credentials so I didn't feel comfortable building an implementation and instead chose to use one off-the-shelf from someone with assuring credentials.
There are some big companies that have made small mistakes that blow up the usefulness of the entire algorithm, it's incredibly easy to do. https://arstechnica.com/gaming/2010/12/ps3-hacked-through-poor-implementation-of-cryptography/
 
 
Hello Colin, is any security audit to the source code planned?
 
We don't have one contracted though both internally and externally this is an important thing people want completed.
 
 
Do you have plans to radically change the interface of the desktop wallet, and to develop a universal, cross-platform, clean and simple UX design for the wallet? This will be huge for mass adoption in my humble opinion
 
I completely agree, we do plan on completely redoing the desktop wallet, both from a UX standpoint and maintainability so UI code doesn't need to be in C++. This could also remove out dependency on QT which is the least permissive license in the code right now.
I write code better than I design GUIs ;)
 
 
It seems like Raiblocks is aiming to be a true currency with it's lacking of transaction fees and fast confirmation times, which is great! If Raiblocks can add some kind of support for privacy then I think it got the whole picture figured out in terms of being "digital cash". Do you currently have any plans to implement privacy features into RaiBlocks?
If Raiblocks is unable to do this, it will still be a straight improvement over things like LTC which are currently being used as currency, but I don't think it will be able to become THE cryptocurrency without privacy features.
 
I love the concept of privacy in the network and it's a hard thing to do right. Any solution used would need to be compatible with our balance-weighted-voting method which means at least we'd have to know how much weight a representative has even if we're hiding actual account balances.
To be fully anonymous it would have to be hide accounts, amounts, endpoints, and also timing information; with advanced network analysis the timing is the hardest thing to hide. Hopefully some day we can figure out an efficient privacy solution though the immediate problem we can solve is making a transactional cryptocurrency so we're focusing on that.
 
 
Could you provide an analysis on the flaws of RaiBlocks? Is it in any way, shape, or form at a disadvantage compared to a blockchain based ledger like bitcoin? There has to be drawbacks, but I haven’t found any.
Do you plan on expanding the dev team and establishing a foundation? Also, how much money is in the development pool?
 
One drawback is to handle is our chain-per-account model and asynchronous updates it takes more code and design. This means instead of one top-block hash for everything there's one for each account. This gives us the power of wait-free asynchronous transactions at the cost of simplicity.
After we finish up things like the wallet, website, and exchange integration we'll be looking at seeing what dev resources we need to build tech if no one else is already working on a particular thing. We have about 6 million XRB right now so we've made the existing dev funds go a long way. If something expensive to build came along and dev funds wouldn't cut it we could look at some sort of external funding.
 
 
How big of a problem is PoW for exchanges and what are potential solutions?
 
Considering how much exchanges stand to make through commission I don't see the cost as a barrier, it's just an abnormal technology request compared to other cryptocurrencies.
We're working on providing a service exchanges can use in the interim until they set up their own infrastructure to generate the work. Other options are containers people can use on cloud services to get the infrastructure they need until they want to invest in their own.
 
 
It's my understanding that since everything works asynchronously, in the case of double spending there is a chance a merchant would receive the block that would be later invalidated and have it shown in it's wallet, even if a little later (1 minute?) the amount would correct when the delegates vote that block invalid. Is there any mechanism to avoid this? Maybe tag the transactions in the wallet as "confirming" and then "confirmed" after that minute? Is there actually any certain way for a wallet to know, in a deterministic/programable way, at what moment a transaction is 100% legit? (for example if the delegates are DoS'ed I guess that minute could be much longer). I know this is an improbable case, but still...
 
Yea you're hitting a good point, the consensus algorithm in the node is designed to wait for the incoming transaction to settle before accepting it in to the local chain for the exact reason you listed, if their transaction were to be rolled back the local account would be rolled back as well.
We can trend the current weight of all representatives that are online and voting and make sure we have >50% of the vote weight accounted for before considering it settled.
 
 
Hey Colin, will you eventually have support for a Trezor or other hard wallet?
 
Yea we'll definitely work with companies like Trezor that are interested in being a hardware wallet for xrb. It's just a matter of making sure they support the signing algorithms and integrating with their API.
 
EDIT: I'm getting a lot of messages asking me how to buy XRB. I used this guide which was very helpful: https://www.reddit.com/RaiBlocks/comments/7i0co0/the_definitive_guide_to_buying_and_storing/
In short -- buy BTC on coinbase, open up an account on bitgrail, transfer that BTC from coinbase to bitgrail, then trade your BTC for XRB. It's a pain right now because it's such a new coin, but soon it will be listed on more exchanges, and hopefully on things like shapeshift/changelly. After that it will be much easier... but until then, the inconvenience is what we have to pay in order to get into XRB while its still early.
EDIT: BAD SCRIPT, BAD!
submitted by atriaxx to CryptoCurrencies [link] [comments]

RaiBlocks AMA Summary!

Summation of RaiBlocks lead developer AMA. I'm very excited about this coin, and if you're asking why I did this...I'm trying out my AMA consolidating script that I wrote for fun :) I'm interested in seeing what people think about this coin! You can read the responses directly from this link: https://www.reddit.com/RaiBlocks/comments/7ko5l7/colin_lemahieu_founder_and_lead_developer_of/
 
What are your top priorities atm? Both in developing areas itself and in terms of integration?
 
The top priorities right now are:
These basically need to happen in a sequence because each item isn't useful unless the previous one is complete.
 
 
Do you have any plans to have your source code peer reviewed? By peer review I mean sending your source code down to MIT for testing and review.
Where do you see Raiblocks 5-10 years from now? (For instance do you envision people using a Raiblocks mobile phone app to transfer value between each other, or buy stuff at the store?
 
We definitely need peer and code reviews and we're open to anyone doing this. We have ideas for people in universities that want to analyze the whitepaper or code so we'll see what comes of that. In my opinion code security guarantees can only be given with (eyes * time) and we need both.
I'd like to see RaiBlocks adopted as an internet RFC and basically become an ubiquitous background technology like http. I think you're probably right and a mobile app would be the most user-friendly way to do this so people don't need to carry around extra cards in their wallet etc.
 
 
Is there a list of the team readily available? Are there firm plans to expand, and if so, in which directions?
The roadmap indicated a website redesign scheduled for November 2017. Is there an update?
 
We have about 12 people in the core team; about half are code and half are business developers. On the redesigned website we're going to include bios for sure, no one in our team is anonymous. I think we have pretty good coverage of what we need right now, we could always use more people capable of contributing to the core code.
The website design is well underway, we wanted to streamline and add some more things to it so it took longer than originally estimated. It'll looking like after the new year we'll have it ready.
 
 
Would you ever consider renaming the coin to simply "Rai" or any other simplified form other than RaiBlocks?
2. What marketing strategy do you think will push XRB forward from now on as a fully working product. Instant and free, the green coin, "it just works" coin, etc?
3. Regarding security, is "quantum-proofing" a big concern at the moment and how do you guys plan to approach this when the time comes. And how possible would it be for bad actors to successfully implement a 51% attack.
 
  1. Yea there are a few difficulties people have pointed out with our name. People don't know if it's "ray" or "rye". "Blocks" doesn't have a meaning to a lot of people and the name reference might be too esoteric to be meaningful. I'm not prideful so I'm not stuck on a particular name, we'll take a look at what our marketing and business developers say peoples' impressions are and if they have any naming recommendations.
  2. Our marketing strategy is to focus on complete simplicity. Instant and free resonates with enthusiasts and mass adoption will only come when using xrb is absolutely the same experience as using a banking or other payment app. People aren't going to tolerate jargon or confusing workflows when sending or receiving payments.
  3. Quantum computing is going to be an amazing leap for humanity but it's also going to cause a lot of flux in cryptography. The plan I see is the similar to what I did in selecting the cryptographic algorithms we're using right now: look for leaders in academia and industry that have proven implementations and use those as they recommend migration based on computing capability. Quantum vulnerabilities can be an issue in the future but a vulnerable implementation would be an issue right now.
 
 
Hi Colin, lately XRB has been getting frequently compared to and contrasted with Iota. I was hoping that you could give us your thoughts on the differences between the two and what your general vision for the future of Raiblocks is.
 
It's flattering to be compared to IOTA, they have a very talented team building ambitious technology. When looking at design goals I think one thing we're not attempting to approach is transferring a data payload, we're only looking to be a transfer of value.
There are lots of ideas and technology to be developed in the cryptocurrency space and I want RaiBlocks to solve one section of that industry: the transfer of value. I think the best success would be if RaiBlocks was adopted as the global standard for this and crypto efforts could move to non-value-transfer use-cases.
 
 
Do you see XRB becoming the new payment method for commerce. As in, buying coffee, groceries, etc? Do you have plans for combating the HODL mentality so this currency can actually be used in the future of buying and selling?
 
Being a direct transactional payment method is our goal and we're trying to build software that's accessible to everyone to make that happen. I see holding as a speculative tactic anticipating future increases and you're right, it's not in line with day-to-day transactions. I think as market cap levels off to a more consistent value the reason for holding and speculating goes away and people can instead focus on using it as a value exchange.
 
 
Are you planning to expand the RaiBlocks team over the next 12 months? If so, what types of positions are you hoping to fill?
 
Right now we have about 12 people, half core and half business developers. I think this count is good for working on what we're doing right now which is getting wallets and exchanges worked on. Ideally people outside our team will start developing technology around xrb taking advantage of the network effect to build more technology faster than we could internally. That being said we're going to look in a few months to see if there's anything out there people aren't developing that should be and we'll see what people we need to make it happen.
 
 
At what point did you make the decision to make RaiBlocks your full time job? What was the decision making process like?
 
It was after the week where the core team met here in Austin to brainstorm our next steps. I saw how much enthusiasm there was from crypto-veterans with having a working system capable of being scaled up to what's needed for massive adoption and it seemed the risk needed to be taken.
It was hard decision to make, working in the crypto and finance is rough and I like using my leisure time to work on inventions. Of all the projects ideas I have this one seemed to have a high chance of success and the benefits of having a working, decentralized currency would be huge.
 
 
Hi Colin, what prevents great cryptos like XRB from being listed on bigger exchanges?
 
It's good to understand where the biggest headaches for exchanges lie: support tickets, operations, and development. If a technology is different from what they already have, that takes development time. If the software is new and not widely run, that's potential operations time to fix it which results in support tickets and community backlash. Adding BitCoin clones or Ethereum ICO coins is easy because they don't have these associated risks or costs.
 
 
What can the average RaiBlocks-Fan do to help XRB getting adopted / growing / expanding?
 
I think the best thing an average fan could do is word of mouth and telling people about RaiBlocks. More people being aware of it means there's the possibility someone who's never heard of it before would be interested in contributing as a vendor, developer, exchange etc.
Good advertising or marketing will never be able to reach everyone as well as someone reaching out within their own network.
 
 
Ray or Rye?
 
Ray hehe. It comes from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rai_stones Lots of people don't know the answer though >_<
 
 
Are you looking at incorperating a datamarket like iota in the future? Given the speed of the network a data exchange for highly accurate sensors could be a game changer.
Further more, are there any plans to increase the Dev team in the future? I read on the FAQ you'd like RaiBlocks to be somewhat of a protocol which is a huge ambition. A Dev from say the Mozilla foundation or other could further cement this ambitious project.
 
Transmitting data payloads is something we probably won't pursue. The concern is adding more features like this could cause us to make decisions that compromise the primary focus points of low-cost and speed for transferring value.
We can add people to the dev team though I think we'll get the most traction by teaching teams in these other organization how to use RaiBlocks so they can be the experts on the subject in their companies.
 
 
Does the actual RaiBlocks version require "Each node in the network must be aware of all transactions as they occur" part? This was in the old white paper and is asked here:
https://www.reddit.com/RaiBlocks/comments/7ksl81/some_questions_regarding_raiblocks_consensus/?st=jbdmgagc&sh=d1c93cca
 
If a node wants to independently know the balances of all accounts in the system, it must at a minimum have storage to hold accounts and all their balances. In order to know all balances it must either listen to transactions as they're happening or bootstrap from someone else to catch up as what happens on startup.
 
 
There is no incentive to run nodes. Some people will do it because it is cheap as fuck (as I read an raspberry pie can run it). But I think not many people will do it.
1. How important are the nodes in terms of further scaling?
2. On which network conditions where the 7000 transactions met?
3. What happens if the transactions per day tenfolds but the nodes don't?
4. How much better will Rai scale if someone sets up, lets say, 100 nodes with awesome hardware and network?
5. How many nodes could be enough for visa level scaling?
6. Which further improvements can be made for Rai IF there needs to be other improvements than setting up new nodes? Are there other concepts like 2nd layer solutions planned?
7. How will Rai defend network attacks?
I know there is an PoW part. But since there a also large attacks on high cap coins on which people invest millions of $ to congest a network..Is it possible that the Rai network will be unusable for several days because of this?
 
I think the out-of-protocol incentives to running a node are under-referenced yet I see them as the primary driving factor for participating as a whole. Node rewards come at the expense of other network participants and in this closed loop the incentives aren't enough to keep a cryptocurrency alive. Long-term there needs to be a system-level comparative advantage to what people are already using for a transfer of value. If someone is using xrb and it saves them hundreds or thousands of dollars per month in fees and customer irritation in delayed payments, they have a direct monetary incentive to using xrb and a monetary incentive in the health of the system.
1) More nodes provides transaction and bootstrapping redundancy. More representatives provides decentralization.
2) The 7k TPS was a profile how fast commodity hardware could eat transactions. All of the real-world limits are going to be something hardware related, either bandwidth, IO, or CPU.
3) The scaling is more related to the hardware the nodes are using rather than the node count. If there was 10x increase in transactions it would use 10x the bandwidth and IO as nodes observe transactions happening.
4) If someone made 100 representative nodes the network would be far more decentralized though the tx throughput would be unchanged since that's a per-node requirement.
5) Scaling to Visa will have high bandwidth and IO requirements on representatives associated with doing 10k IOPS. Datacenter and business class hardware will have to be enough to handle the load.
6) Second layer solutions are always an option and I think a lot of people will use them for fraud protection and insurance. Our primary focus is to make the 1st layer as efficient and high speed as possible so a 2nd layer isn't needed for daily transactions.
7) Defending against network attacks will be an ongoing thing, people like breaking the network for lulz or monetary gain i.e. competing cryptos. If there are attacks we haven't defended against or considered it'll be a matter of getting capable people to fix issues.
 
 
Are you open to changes to the name? (Rai)
What are your plans with regards to marketing?
 
I'm open to it, people get confused on ray/rye pronunciation, not the greatest first impression.
As far as timing I think marketing works best after a more user friendly wallet and integration in to more exchanges otherwise we're sending traffic to something people can't use. We're going to start by focusing on the initial adopters which will likely be enthusiasts and going forward work on the next set of users that aren't enthusiasts but want to drive savings for their business through lower payment processing costs.
 
 
A recent tweet(https://twitter.com/VitalikButerin/status/942961006614945792) from Vitalik Buterin. Could this be a case with testing the scalability of RaiBlocks as well and in reality we wouldn't come close to 7000tx/s?
 
I think he's definitely right, a lot of the TPS numbers are synthetic benchmarks usually on one system. The biggest thing hindering TPS are protocol-specific limits like hard caps or high contention design. The next biggest thing will be bandwidth and then disk IO. Some of these limits can be improved by profiling and fixing code instead of actual limits in the hardware.
We want to get better, real world numbers but our general opinion is that the RaiBlocks protocol is going to be limited by hardware, rather than design.
 
 
Are you planning to add a fiat gateway to the main website and mobile wallet?
 
If we can make it happen for sure, that seems like a very user-focused feature people would want.
The difficulty at least in the US is the money-transmitter licenses which are hard to obtain. More than likely if this functionality was added it'd be a partnership with an established financial company that has procedures in place to operate within countries' regulations.
 
 
I saw a post on /iota that claims that their quantum resistance is a main benefit over raiblocks. Can you go into detail about this? explain any plans you have to let XRB persevere through upcoming quatum revolution?
 
I think everyone with cryptography in their programs is keeping an eye on quantum cryptography because we're all in the same boat. I don't have cryptanalysis credentials so I didn't feel comfortable building an implementation and instead chose to use one off-the-shelf from someone with assuring credentials.
There are some big companies that have made small mistakes that blow up the usefulness of the entire algorithm, it's incredibly easy to do. https://arstechnica.com/gaming/2010/12/ps3-hacked-through-poor-implementation-of-cryptography/
 
 
Hello Colin, is any security audit to the source code planned?
 
We don't have one contracted though both internally and externally this is an important thing people want completed.
 
 
Do you have plans to radically change the interface of the desktop wallet, and to develop a universal, cross-platform, clean and simple UX design for the wallet? This will be huge for mass adoption in my humble opinion
 
I completely agree, we do plan on completely redoing the desktop wallet, both from a UX standpoint and maintainability so UI code doesn't need to be in C++. This could also remove out dependency on QT which is the least permissive license in the code right now.
I write code better than I design GUIs ;)
 
 
It seems like Raiblocks is aiming to be a true currency with it's lacking of transaction fees and fast confirmation times, which is great! If Raiblocks can add some kind of support for privacy then I think it got the whole picture figured out in terms of being "digital cash". Do you currently have any plans to implement privacy features into RaiBlocks?
If Raiblocks is unable to do this, it will still be a straight improvement over things like LTC which are currently being used as currency, but I don't think it will be able to become THE cryptocurrency without privacy features.
 
I love the concept of privacy in the network and it's a hard thing to do right. Any solution used would need to be compatible with our balance-weighted-voting method which means at least we'd have to know how much weight a representative has even if we're hiding actual account balances.
To be fully anonymous it would have to be hide accounts, amounts, endpoints, and also timing information; with advanced network analysis the timing is the hardest thing to hide. Hopefully some day we can figure out an efficient privacy solution though the immediate problem we can solve is making a transactional cryptocurrency so we're focusing on that.
 
 
Could you provide an analysis on the flaws of RaiBlocks? Is it in any way, shape, or form at a disadvantage compared to a blockchain based ledger like bitcoin? There has to be drawbacks, but I haven’t found any.
Do you plan on expanding the dev team and establishing a foundation? Also, how much money is in the development pool?
 
One drawback is to handle is our chain-per-account model and asynchronous updates it takes more code and design. This means instead of one top-block hash for everything there's one for each account. This gives us the power of wait-free asynchronous transactions at the cost of simplicity.
After we finish up things like the wallet, website, and exchange integration we'll be looking at seeing what dev resources we need to build tech if no one else is already working on a particular thing. We have about 6 million XRB right now so we've made the existing dev funds go a long way. If something expensive to build came along and dev funds wouldn't cut it we could look at some sort of external funding.
 
 
How big of a problem is PoW for exchanges and what are potential solutions?
 
Considering how much exchanges stand to make through commission I don't see the cost as a barrier, it's just an abnormal technology request compared to other cryptocurrencies.
We're working on providing a service exchanges can use in the interim until they set up their own infrastructure to generate the work. Other options are containers people can use on cloud services to get the infrastructure they need until they want to invest in their own.
 
 
It's my understanding that since everything works asynchronously, in the case of double spending there is a chance a merchant would receive the block that would be later invalidated and have it shown in it's wallet, even if a little later (1 minute?) the amount would correct when the delegates vote that block invalid. Is there any mechanism to avoid this? Maybe tag the transactions in the wallet as "confirming" and then "confirmed" after that minute? Is there actually any certain way for a wallet to know, in a deterministic/programable way, at what moment a transaction is 100% legit? (for example if the delegates are DoS'ed I guess that minute could be much longer). I know this is an improbable case, but still...
 
Yea you're hitting a good point, the consensus algorithm in the node is designed to wait for the incoming transaction to settle before accepting it in to the local chain for the exact reason you listed, if their transaction were to be rolled back the local account would be rolled back as well.
We can trend the current weight of all representatives that are online and voting and make sure we have >50% of the vote weight accounted for before considering it settled.
 
 
Hey Colin, will you eventually have support for a Trezor or other hard wallet?
 
Yea we'll definitely work with companies like Trezor that are interested in being a hardware wallet for xrb. It's just a matter of making sure they support the signing algorithms and integrating with their API.
 
EDIT: BAD SCRIPT, BAD!
submitted by atriaxx to altcoin [link] [comments]

Why are there still no bars that accept bitcoin in Austin?

This is my first time posting in this sub, but I am an Austinite for almost 20 years, and I want to be able to go out and buy drinks with bitcoin, damn it.
I can already buy everything from gas and groceries to guns and gold in Austin with bitcoin, and one bar (Handlebar on 5th) even installed the first bitcoin ATM in Austin months ago, but even they don't accept bitcoin for drinks. They have stated repeatedly that they are "working on it", but that was also months ago and seemingly no progress has been made.
So many other local businesses have already made the leap and enjoyed an influx in business for nearly no cost, and considering the prevalence of the business and culture of bars in Austin, I guess I just don't get why that industry, as a whole, is last to the party. I expected more, especially since Austin is almost unanimously considered the most Bitcoin friendly city in the states and there are many bars in other states that are already doing this.
The first bar to accept bitcoin in Austin would gain free marketing, press coverage, and a group of loyal patrons from /Bitcoin - and most Austin Bitcoiners are not exactly broke.
If you own a bar in Austin or know someone who does, please, riddle me this /Austin. Also, I'll be using the changetip bot in this thread to give bitcoin to redditors for posting constructive comments, so come with it!
Resources: What is Bitcoin?, Explain Bitcoin Like I'm Five
submitted by quietbeast to Austin [link] [comments]

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