Author Topic: Cryptocurrency Thread  (Read 22543 times)

QDRPHNC

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Cryptocurrency Thread
« on: February 04, 2021, 12:17:46 AM »
The GME hedge fund thread has turned somewhat towards crypto investing, so it seemed appropriate to start a proper thread.

It could be run-off from the GME hype, but the last few days have been good for crypto, with Ethereum rising almost 10% in the last 24 hours, Litecoin 7% and Bitcoin just under 5% in the same period of time.

People say it's volatile, but I invested some of my savings in 2019 and at no point in the last 2 years has my position felt especially precarious. There have been short, steep climbs and a couple of big dips, but overall the feeling is very much one of a slow and steady march upwards. Certainly less anxiety-inducing that watching stocks go up and down all day, finger poised over the sell button.

And aside from the investment aspect, there are also more practical uses. It's incredibly easy to pay for stuff completely anonymously. And if you don't trust the exchanges to keep your crypto safe, you can also get a cool as hell cold wallet.



Look how cool that is.

QDRPHNC

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Re: Cryptocurrency Thread
« Reply #1 on: February 04, 2021, 12:20:05 AM »

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Re: Cryptocurrency Thread
« Reply #2 on: February 04, 2021, 12:21:15 AM »
I've made almost four pounds in the last few days on Bitcoins

Re: Cryptocurrency Thread
« Reply #3 on: February 04, 2021, 12:43:08 AM »
A slight tangent on the topic of crypto currency...

If you have a spare 75 minutes then I would highly recommend watching this video about the Silk Road. The Silk Road was a dark web store that used bitcoin as the currency. Would be best not to read about before watching the video as you don't want to spoil the ending.

Re: Cryptocurrency Thread
« Reply #4 on: February 04, 2021, 12:46:15 AM »
I've had a pretty remarkable run trading between cryptos the last weeks turning my bitcoin to doge and doge to bitcoin and then my bitcoin to ethereum.

It def does seem different to the mad rise and collapse of 2017/2018 right now, it probably will hit that point at some stage but milder and we're not really there yet. Bitcoin will almost certainly hit $50k but there could be a lot of 20% rises and drops beforehand. Ethereum hitting $2k and maybe hanging along around there seems reasonable too.

As someone who has actually used crypto to buy a few things I'm pretty skeptical of its practical uses (although it legit is neat, the speeds at their very best are still fairly shite), there's just about enough to make it seem viable but nothing very promising. As a kind of neverending horse race you can bet on for as long as your sanity can hold there's plenty of potential though. With the bigger ones likely to gradually swell in value off the back of more volatile things robbing gambling addicts blind.

Certainly less anxiety-inducing that watching stocks go up and down all day, finger poised over the sell button.
Oddly, I think that's the exact opposite of the appeal for a lot of people.
You can buy amazon stock when it's a bit low and basically forget about then return in 6 months to a bumped price. Even the most stable crypto can have 10% variance within a couple of hours and be not at all abnormal, with something like that there's gonna be a LOT of people hanging around all day to catch a chance to buy at a dump and then sell right before the next one.

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Re: Cryptocurrency Thread
« Reply #5 on: February 04, 2021, 12:48:56 AM »
If you have a spare 75 minutes then I would highly recommend watching this video about the Silk Road.

It's very interesting so far, but jesus these Youtube documentaries sometimes...

"To some people he is a saint," [show picture of unrelated saint] "to others he is a criminal." [show picture of unrelated criminal]

Edit: Finished it, very interesting watch. I had a feeling it was going to turn out that way, just wasn't sure exactly how.
« Last Edit: February 04, 2021, 03:27:37 AM by QDRPHNC »

Re: Cryptocurrency Thread
« Reply #6 on: February 04, 2021, 12:59:07 AM »
It's probably just that the stock websites have way more UI $$$ put into them so there's an utterly horrific amount of info flying into your face very rapidly that you can process.
I've always found crypto trading screens a bit impossible value cos everything will be weighted against dollars and bitcoin and overall crypto capitalisation and you'll be trading between cryptos instead of something as stable as a currency... just way too much to figure out for me

Re: Cryptocurrency Thread
« Reply #7 on: February 04, 2021, 01:02:59 AM »
Have accumulated BTC and Ether since 2018 in various tranches so I'm smiling right now.

Dabbled in some altcoins in smaller quantities and some have gone to shite but still hodling some Cardano and Iota. The latter, in particular, is intriguing since it stands apart from the others in that it doesn't operate on the Blockchain. Has moon potential if you listen to it's fans but others are adamant that its just another shitcoin. I dunno myself (who does?) but keeping some just in case.

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Re: Cryptocurrency Thread
« Reply #8 on: February 04, 2021, 01:03:26 AM »
It's probably just that the stock websites have way more UI $$$ put into them so there's an utterly horrific amount of info flying into your face very rapidly that you can process.

Good point, although I think the problem might be not enough spent on UX rather than too much.

In the other direction, I've been noodling around with Wealthsimple's new trading platform and it's disconcertingly simple (as is their house style). That level of interface minimalism works for a savings account, but with trading I feel like I need a bit more information to feel comfortable.

I've always found crypto trading screens a bit impossible value cos everything will be weighted against dollars and bitcoin and overall crypto capitalisation and you'll be trading between cryptos instead of something as stable as a currency... just way too much to figure out for me

Hmm, maybe it's the exchanges you've tried. I use Coinsmart (Canadian exchange) and their interface is pretty straightforward (I am not Jessica).



Have accumulated BTC and Ether since 2018 in various tranches so I'm smiling right now.

Dabbled in some altcoins in smaller quantities and some have gone to shite but still hodling some Cardano and Iota. The latter, in particular, is intriguing since it stands apart from the others in that it doesn't operate on the Blockchain. Has moon potential if you listen to it's fans but others are adamant that its just another shitcoin. I dunno myself (who does?) but keeping some just in case.

I got in later than you, but that bump back around October/November, that was great.

Never heard of Iota. I had a bit of Neo that was doing ok, then I stupidly took it all and stuck in to Ripple to try to ride that wave, but it was too late.

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Re: Cryptocurrency Thread
« Reply #9 on: February 04, 2021, 02:56:53 AM »
I own Bitcoin and etherium right now, and know very little about it all. Everything I’ve invested is being treated as “spent” so as much as I’d love it to increase in value, I’m ok if it doesn’t. I’m up very slightly, but it really doesn’t matter as I’m not going to even think about selling for years and years, if that.

Now - who wants to explain to old Uncle Ferris what the fuck a blockchain is? And what’s the difference between these “coins” and how do they get set up? Why is one better than the other, and how is the value determined?

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Re: Cryptocurrency Thread
« Reply #10 on: February 04, 2021, 06:02:39 AM »
A slight tangent on the topic of crypto currency...

If you have a spare 75 minutes then I would highly recommend watching this video about the Silk Road. The Silk Road was a dark web store that used bitcoin as the currency. Would be best not to read about before watching the video as you don't want to spoil the ending.

Does the Silk Road get a hardon

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Re: Cryptocurrency Thread
« Reply #11 on: February 04, 2021, 07:24:58 AM »
Woke up to find my small investment in ZRX has, if not gone to the moon, certainly plotted a course for space.

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Re: Cryptocurrency Thread
« Reply #12 on: February 04, 2021, 08:20:51 AM »
Elon “Rocket Crasher” Musk has plugged Doge again and predictably it shot up.

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Re: Cryptocurrency Thread
« Reply #13 on: February 04, 2021, 08:40:01 AM »
I own Bitcoin and etherium right now, and know very little about it all. Everything I’ve invested is being treated as “spent” so as much as I’d love it to increase in value, I’m ok if it doesn’t. I’m up very slightly, but it really doesn’t matter as I’m not going to even think about selling for years and years, if that.

Now - who wants to explain to old Uncle Ferris what the fuck a blockchain is? And what’s the difference between these “coins” and how do they get set up? Why is one better than the other, and how is the value determined?

I'm in a similar place as you. Got a few 100 in bitcoin and erthium, but mostly as a bit of fun/interest. Have a regular bimonthly buy of small amounts of bitcoin to try and even out market fluctuations.

Generally it all feels like gambling, and all the graphs and insider chat make lke it feel some massive scam. Bit to be honest the 'normal' economy also makes me feel like that.

Have some concerns about the massive amounts of energy required to support bitcoin and also as a PC gamer am massively pissed off about over paying for GPUs.

Re: Cryptocurrency Thread
« Reply #14 on: February 04, 2021, 09:01:26 AM »
Quote
Have some concerns about the massive amounts of energy required to support bitcoin and also as a PC gamer am massively pissed off about over paying for GPUs.

I've heard that when you consider the running of cash machines at all times given the sheer number of them, including the normal banking system and all the networking/compute needed it's not too much of a difference to that of the Bitcoin ecosystem. I think this is likely false as it doesn't account for the increasing energy needs required to exhaust the whole available 'space' that can be can be minted for all coins for each variant.

The thing I think is going to prevent it becoming mainstream is the time it takes (with processing costs a close second) to actually make a transaction. I've done it a few times for the experience and it took ages to go through. That said I do wonder if it's worth buying small amounts of ETH and BTC on the off chance it does head upwards in value. Once all the coins have been mined though, surely the only benefit to the whole crypto thing is the supposed anonymity. I say supposed as the whole transaction chain is there to view. If someone can pin an address to an individual, the whole chain is there to see much like a bank statement.

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Re: Cryptocurrency Thread
« Reply #15 on: February 04, 2021, 09:02:20 AM »

It def does seem different to the mad rise and collapse of 2017/2018 right now, it probably will hit that point at some stage but milder and we're not really there yet. Bitcoin will almost certainly hit $50k but there could be a lot of 20% rises and drops beforehand. Ethereum hitting $2k and maybe hanging along around there seems reasonable too.

Why do you think it will be different this time? Is there any evidence for it?  Not trying to be flippant, I'd genuinely like to know.  From where I'm standing it just looks like the usual several year media hype around crypto.

Quote
Generally it all feels like gambling, and all the graphs and insider chat make lke it feel some massive scam. Bit to be honest the 'normal' economy also makes me feel like that.

I just see it as gambling too. My guess is 99% of people don't have a clue what the coins are, how they work and whether there's actually any 'real' value there. And it's just so risky. A bug was found in the code of YAMv1 and it lost 99% of its value in a couple of hours. Anyone buying crypt should be prepared for that.



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Re: Cryptocurrency Thread
« Reply #16 on: February 04, 2021, 09:07:25 AM »
I've heard that when you consider the running of cash machines at all times given the sheer number of them, including the normal banking system and all the networking/compute needed it's not too much of a difference to that of the Bitcoin ecosystem.
Given the vast disparity in transactions[1], that claim would still make Bitcoin absolutely horrifying, wouldn't it?

 1. Setting aside cash, existing electronic transfer mechanisms will be in the 10,000s per second in 2020?

Re: Cryptocurrency Thread
« Reply #17 on: February 04, 2021, 09:11:30 AM »

Now - who wants to explain to old Uncle Ferris what the fuck a blockchain is?

Answering because I'm trying to understand this myself, have I got this right?:
Blockchains are the way digital currencies avoid users illegally 'printing their own money' by copying/creating a unit of currency. Each transaction has a unique identity which contains encrypted records of every single other transaction made using the currency, by all users. That way, no transaction can exist without having some impact on the rest of the system, so if someone magics up some money from nowhere, it will be noticeable. One of the problems with this system, as Al noted above, is the enormous and unsustainable energy use of every transaction containing such a large amount of data.

EDIT- I've been corrected on the mistakes in the above, see below
« Last Edit: February 04, 2021, 09:24:38 AM by Astronaut Omens »

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Re: Cryptocurrency Thread
« Reply #18 on: February 04, 2021, 09:12:51 AM »
A slight tangent on the topic of crypto currency...

If you have a spare 75 minutes then I would highly recommend watching this video about the Silk Road. The Silk Road was a dark web store that used bitcoin as the currency. Would be best not to read about before watching the video as you don't want to spoil the ending.

Silk Road was fucking excellent. It couldn't last though.

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Re: Cryptocurrency Thread
« Reply #19 on: February 04, 2021, 09:15:08 AM »
I've heard that when you consider the running of cash machines at all times given the sheer number of them, including the normal banking system and all the networking/compute needed it's not too much of a difference to that of the Bitcoin ecosystem. I think this is likely false as it doesn't account for the increasing energy needs required to exhaust the whole available 'space' that can be can be minted for all coins for each variant.

The thing I think is going to prevent it becoming mainstream is the time it takes (with processing costs a close second) to actually make a transaction. I've done it a few times for the experience and it took ages to go through. That said I do wonder if it's worth buying small amounts of ETH and BTC on the off chance it does head upwards in value. Once all the coins have been mined though, surely the only benefit to the whole crypto thing is the supposed anonymity. I say supposed as the whole transaction chain is there to view. If someone can pin an address to an individual, the whole chain is there to see much like a bank statement.

Yes, all transactions are logged in the open on the blockchain. You can take steps to obscure it (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cryptocurrency_tumbler) but the closest you're going to get to anonymity is cash.

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Re: Cryptocurrency Thread
« Reply #20 on: February 04, 2021, 09:16:04 AM »
One of the problems with this system, as Al noted above, is the enormous and unsustainable energy use of every transaction containing such a large amount of data.
The energy use of Bitcoin isn't a consequence of it being built around a blockchain.

(And a blockchain doesn't rely on processing every single prior transaction each time you add a new one.)

Re: Cryptocurrency Thread
« Reply #21 on: February 04, 2021, 09:21:37 AM »
Thanks, I'll have to have another go and getting my head round it!

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Re: Cryptocurrency Thread
« Reply #22 on: February 04, 2021, 09:22:51 AM »
so is there anywhere in the uk i can buy food for the weekly shop in crypto?

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Re: Cryptocurrency Thread
« Reply #23 on: February 04, 2021, 09:25:41 AM »
Cannot get logged into Kraken for the life of me so presumably I am now a crypto billionaire. Polkadot has shot up and I had about fifty quid in that last time I checked.

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Re: Cryptocurrency Thread
« Reply #24 on: February 04, 2021, 09:26:45 AM »
Thanks, I'll have to have another go and getting my head round it!
I've been a coward and shied away from giving an actual account of how (I think) blockchains work, which isn't very helpful. Sorry.



I think it relies on each 'block' of transactions being summarised using a cryptographic 'hash' - you can't change any of the transactions without changing the hash, but the hash is far smaller than the set of transactions.

The relevant clever bit[1] is that you also include the last block's hash in the data you use to produce this block's hash.

That way, you only need to keep track of the last block's hash to calculate the next block, while still having a 'chain' to follow to verify that each block follows from the last.
 1. As opposed to other clever bits about how you decide on a consensus across distributed ledgers or whatever.

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Re: Cryptocurrency Thread
« Reply #25 on: February 04, 2021, 09:31:49 AM »
I'm investing in something that doesn't exist yet.

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Re: Cryptocurrency Thread
« Reply #26 on: February 04, 2021, 09:59:08 AM »
Got in, made a fiver.

Re: Cryptocurrency Thread
« Reply #27 on: February 04, 2021, 10:10:06 AM »
Why do you think it will be different this time? Is there any evidence for it?  Not trying to be flippant, I'd genuinely like to know.  From where I'm standing it just looks like the usual several year media hype around crypto.
That was it hitting a critical mass both in terms of public awareness and public accessibility. Pretty good chance it will have some kind of crash but losses around then appeared to be absolutely massive with everyone flooding into altcoins and abandoning them just as fast. Basically all the people involved now are both aware it could crash like that but also have the learned experience that most did recover so where people panic sold in 2018 they're a bit less likely to panic.

Ripple hit $3 back then

Re: Cryptocurrency Thread
« Reply #28 on: February 04, 2021, 10:11:36 AM »
Given the vast disparity in transactions[1], that claim would still make Bitcoin absolutely horrifying, wouldn't it?
 1. Setting aside cash, existing electronic transfer mechanisms will be in the 10,000s per second in 2020?

Agreed. Even if it was all powered by renewables I'd argue the energy would be better used reducing coal/gas.

Re: Cryptocurrency Thread
« Reply #29 on: February 04, 2021, 10:13:34 AM »
I've been a coward and shied away from giving an actual account of how (I think) blockchains work, which isn't very helpful. Sorry.



I think it relies on each 'block' of transactions being summarised using a cryptographic 'hash' - you can't change any of the transactions without changing the hash, but the hash is far smaller than the set of transactions.

The relevant clever bit[1] is that you also include the last block's hash in the data you use to produce this block's hash.

That way, you only need to keep track of the last block's hash to calculate the next block, while still having a 'chain' to follow to verify that each block follows from the last.
 1. As opposed to other clever bits about how you decide on a consensus across distributed ledgers or whatever.

I am probably wrong, but I thought the transaction blocks were somehow tied to the creation of new coins. So I can't figure out how transactions will work when the range of possible coins is exhausted. I'm sure the 'coin bros have it all sorted for us though.

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