pcmag.com: Everything You Need to Know About Bitcoin ...

Crypto Comparison: Why Bitcoin and Libra Are Vastly Different - PCMag

Crypto Comparison: Why Bitcoin and Libra Are Vastly Different - PCMag submitted by prnewswireadmin to cryptonewswire [link] [comments]

Hacker Tries to Ransom Github Code Repositories For Bitcoin | News & Opinion | PCMag.com

Hacker Tries to Ransom Github Code Repositories For Bitcoin | News & Opinion | PCMag.com submitted by sexyama to crypto_currency [link] [comments]

05-16 02:13 - 'CryptoCarz featured on PCMag as one of The Coolest Blockchain Startups at Consensus' (pcmag.com) by /u/Felicisimo removed from /r/Bitcoin within 8-18min

CryptoCarz featured on PCMag as one of The Coolest Blockchain Startups at Consensus
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03-20 20:23 - 'Bitcoin's Blockchain Caught Loaded with Child Pornography' (pcmag.com) by /u/iamthepurplerabbit removed from /r/news within 59-69min

Bitcoin's Blockchain Caught Loaded with Child Pornography
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05-16 04:23 - 'PCmagazine: Coolest startups at Consensus!' (pcmag.com) by /u/vevue removed from /r/Bitcoin within 48-58min

PCmagazine: Coolest startups at Consensus!
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03-20 20:13 - 'Bitcoin Blockchain contains child pornography (a.k.a how regulators will get a leg up on bitcoin)' (pcmag.com) by /u/indigo0086 removed from /r/Bitcoin within 2-12min

Bitcoin Blockchain contains child pornography (a.k.a how regulators will get a leg up on bitcoin)
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Everything You Need to Know About Bitcoin | PCMag.com

Everything You Need to Know About Bitcoin | PCMag.com submitted by waspoza to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

Which Bitcoin Exchange Can You Trust? | News & Opinion | PCMag.com

Which Bitcoin Exchange Can You Trust? | News & Opinion | PCMag.com submitted by Steven3x to TechNewsToday [link] [comments]

pcmag.com: Everything You Need to Know About Bitcoin - Bitcoin Forum

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How Data Centralization Ends by 2030

Link to Coindesk: https://www.coindesk.com/data-centralization-2030
The next 10 years will witness the systematic manipulation of human life at a scale unrivaled in history. For all the recent controversies over privacy and surveillance, the real threat is ahead of us.
Unless new approaches to online identity and data management take hold, both governments and private actors will move inexorably from knowing you to shaping you. Blockchain-enabled decentralization will develop as the only viable response to the iron logic of data centralization.
Blockchain believers often talk as though today’s early-adopter use cases, such as cryptocurrency trading and decentralized finance, will lead straight to mass market adoption. As the inevitable ‘killer apps’ appear, so the story goes, blockchain-based systems will conquer the mainstream. One might imagine that we’ll all soon be trading digital collectibles and relying on token-curated registries for accurate information. Governments will lose control over money, and blockchain-based smart contracts will replace court-enforced legal agreements. Uber, Facebook and the banks will wither away in the face of tokenized alternatives.
This narrative is wishful thinking. In most markets, intermediaries will endure for the same reasons they always have: they provide value. The Ubers and Facebooks – and yes, even the banks – tame complexity and produce coherent, convenient, de-risked experiences that no decentralized community can ever match. Early adopters use blockchain-based systems for ideological reasons or to get rich on cryptocurrency speculation. The billions behind them in the mainstream will not. The lock-in power of network effects creates high barriers for alternative economic systems. And the need for trust disqualifies decentralized solutions that are havens for criminals, incapable of effective compliance or vulnerable to catastrophic attacks – which, regrettably, means virtually all of them today.
Truly decentralized blockchain systems will reach critical mass not out of hope but out of necessity. Powerful actors and mainstream users will adopt blockchain as a counterbalance to digital behavior-shaping by governments and private platforms. Dramatic innovations such as decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs), which manage activity automatically through smart contracts, will become significant at the end point of this process, once the foundations are in place.
Big data and artificial intelligence, pitched as freeing us from human frailties, are becoming powerful tools for social control. This is occurring along two parallel tracks: surveillance authoritarianism and surveillance capitalism. Through massive data collection and aggregation, China’s social credit system envisions an airtight regime of perfect compliance with legal and social obligations. Many other governments, including liberal democracies, are adopting similar techniques. The potential for catching terrorists, child predators and tax evaders is simply too appealing – whether it’s the real objective or a cover story.
"WHAT WE NEED IS A TECHNOLOGY THAT ALLOWS FOR SHARING WITHOUT GIVING UP CONTROL. FORTUNATELY, IT EXISTS."
Meanwhile, private digital platforms are using troves of data to shape online experiences consistent with their business models. What you see online is, increasingly, what maximizes their profits. Companies such as Google, Amazon, Tencent and Alibaba can build the best algorithms because they have the most data. And they aren’t interested in sharing.
Regulatory interventions will fail to derail the self-reinforcing momentum for ever more centralized data repositories. They may even accelerate it by creating layers of compliance obligations that only the largest firms can meet. Europe’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) actually increased the market share of Google and Facebook in online advertising, and so it is not surprising to see such incumbents actively welcoming the prospect of more regulation.
The only lasting solution is to change the economics of data, not to impose private property rights; that would accelerate the market forces promoting data centralization. Giving you “ownership” over your data means giving you legal cover to sell it, by clicking “OK” to a one-sided contract you’ll never read. The problem is not ownership, but control. In today’s algorithm-driven world, sharing and aggregating data increases its value, producing better models and better predictions. The trouble is that once we share, we lose control to centralized data hogs.
What we need is a technology that allows for sharing without giving up control. Fortunately, it exists. It is called blockchain. Blockchain technology is, fundamentally, a revolution in trust. In the past, trust required ceding control to counter parties, government authorities or intermediaries who occupied the essential validating roles in transaction networks. Blockchain allows participants to trust the results they see without necessarily trusting any actor to verify them. That’s why major global firms in health care, finance, transportation, international trade and other fields are actively developing cross-organizational platforms based on blockchain and related technologies. No database can provide a trusted view of information across an entire transactional network without empowering a central intermediary. Blockchain can.
Adopting any new platform at scale, along with the necessary software integration and process changes, takes time – especially when the technology is so immature. But today’s incremental deployments will serve as proofs-of-concept for the more radical innovations to come. Chinese blockchain networks are already managing tens of billions of dollars of trade finance transactions. Pharmaceutical companies are tracking drugs from manufacturing to pharmacies using the MediLedger platform. Boeing is selling a billion dollars of airline parts on Honeywell’s blockchain-based marketplace. Car insurance companies are processing accident claims in a unified environment for the first time. These and other enterprise consortia are doing the essential technical and operational groundwork to handle valuable transactions at scale.
The need for transformative approaches to data will become acute in the next five years. Every week, it seems, another outrage comes to light. For instance, users who posted photos under Creative Commons licenses or default-public settings were shocked they were sucked into databases used to train facial-recognition systems. Some were even used in China’s horrific campaign against Uighur Muslims. Clearview AI, an unknown startup, scraped three billion social media images for a face identification tool it provided, with no oversight, to law enforcement, corporations and wealthy individuals. The examples will only get worse as firms and nations learn new ways to exploit data. The core problem is there is no way to share information while retaining control over how it gets used.
Blockchain offers a solution. It will be widely adopted because, behind the scenes, the current data economy is reaching its breaking point. Outrage over abuses is building throughout the world. The immensely valuable online advertising economy attracts so much fraud that the accuracy of its numbers is coming into question. Communities are looking for new ways to collaborate. Governments are realizing the current system is an impediment to effective service delivery.
The technologist Bill Joy famously stated that no matter how many geniuses a company employs, most smart people work somewhere else. The same is true of data. Even giants such as Google, Facebook and Chinese government agencies need to obtain information from elsewhere in their quest for perfect real-time models of every individual. These arrangements work mostly through contracts and interfaces that ease the flow of data between organisations. As Facebook discovered when Cambridge Analytica extracted massive quantities of user data for voter targeting, these connection points are also vulnerabilities. As tighter limits are placed on data-sharing, even the big players will look for ways to rebuild trust.
The blockchain alternative will begin innocuously. Government authorities at the subnational level are deploying self-sovereign identity to pull together information securely across disparate data stores. This technology allows anyone to share private information in a fine-grained way while still retaining control. You shouldn’t have to reveal your address to confirm your age, or your full tax return to verify your stated income. The necessary cryptography doesn’t require a blockchain, but the desired trust relationships do.
Once people have identities that belong to them, not to banks or social media services, they will use them as the basis for other interactions. Imagine a world where you never need to give a third-party unnecessary data to log into a website, apply for a job, refinance a mortgage or link your bank account to a mobile payment app. Where you can keep your personal and professional profiles completely separate if you choose. Where you can be confident in the reputation of a car mechanic or an Airbnb or a product made in China without intermediaries warping ratings for their own gain. The convenience of user experiences we enjoy within the walled gardens of digital platforms will become the norm across the vastness of independent services.
We will gradually come to view access to our personal information as an episodic, focused interaction, rather than fatalistically accepting an open season based on preliminary formal consent. Major hardware companies such as Apple, which don’t depend on targeted advertising, will build decentralized identity capabilities into their devices. They will add cryptocurrency wallets linked behind the scenes to existing payment and messaging applications. Stablecoins – cryptocurrencies pegged to the dollar, pound or other assets – will help tame volatility and facilitate movement between tokens and traditional currencies. Privately created stablecoins will coexist with central bank digital currencies, which are under development in most major countries throughout the world.
Once this baseline infrastructure is widely available, the real changes will start to occur. DAOs will begin to attract assets as efficient ways for communities to achieve their goals. These entities won’t replace state-backed legal systems; they will operate within them. As numerous controversies, crashes and hacks have already demonstrated, software code is too rigid for the range of situations in the real world, absent backstops for human dispute resolution. Fortunately, there are solutions under development to connect legal and digital entities, such as OpenLaw’s Limited Liability Autonomous Organisations and Mattereum’s Asset Passports.
Today, the legal machinery of contracts strengthens the power of centralized platforms. User agreements and privacy policies enforce their control over data and limit individuals’ power to challenge it. Blockchain-based systems will flip that relationship, with the legal system deployed to protect technology-backed user empowerment. Large aggregations of information will be structured formally as “data trusts” that exercise independent stewardship over assets. They will operate as DAOs, with smart contracts defining the terms of data usage. Users will benefit from sharing while retaining the ability to opt out.
"DATA WILL BE TREATED NOT AS PROPERTY BUT AS A RENEWABLE RESOURCE, WITH THE COMPETITION FOR ECONOMIC VALUE IN THE APPLICATIONS BUILT ON TOP OF IT."
Many significant applications require aggregation of data to drive algorithms, including traffic monitoring (and eventually autonomous vehicles); insurance and lending products serving previously excluded or overcharged customer groups; diagnosis and drug dosing in health care; and demand forecasting for economic modeling. Collective action problems can prevent constructive developments even when rights in data are well defined. DAOs will gradually find market opportunities, from patronage of independent artists to mortgage securitization.
The big data aggregators won’t go away. They will participate in the decentralized data economy because it provides benefits for them as well, cutting down on fraud and reinforcing user trust, which is in increasingly scarce supply. Over time, those who provide benefits of personalization and targeting will more and more be expected to pay for it. A wide range of brokering and filtering providers will offer users a choice of analytics, some embedded in applications or devices and some providing services virtually in the cloud. Governments will focus on making data available and defining policy objectives for services that take advantage of the flow of information. Data will be treated not as property but as a renewable resource, with the competition for economic value in the applications built on top of it.
The most powerful benefit of open data built on blockchain-based decentralised control is that it will allow for new applications we can’t yet envision. If startups can take advantage of the power of data aggregation that today is limited to large incumbents, they are bound to build innovations those incumbents miss.
The surveillance economy took hold because few appreciated what was happening with their data until it was too late. And the cold reality is that few will accept significantly worse functionality or user experience in return for better privacy. That is why the blockchain-powered revolution will make its way up from infrastructural foundations of digital identity and hardware, rather than down from novel user-facing applications.
This vision is far from certain to be realized. Business decisions and government policies could make blockchain-based data decentralization more or less likely. The greatest reason for optimism is that the problem blockchain addresses – gaining trust without giving up control – is becoming ever more critical. The world runs on trust. Blockchain offers hope for recasting trust in the networked digital era.
submitted by BlockDotCo to u/BlockDotCo [link] [comments]

Alienware Alpha R1 is 2020

Alienware Alpha R1 in 2020*

Mistyped the title...
This is going to be a simple guide to help any R1 owner upgrade and optimize their Alpha.

Upgradable Parts

(In order of importance)
Storage Unit:
HDD OUT
SSD IN
This is by far the easiest upgrade to make and the most effective.
https://www.newegg.com/p/pl?N=100011693%20600038463
Any of those will work, just needs to be 2.5 Inch SATA.
How to Replace Video

WIFI Card:
This is like a 5-15$ upgrade. Go find any Intel 7265ngw off eBay and replace it with your current WIFI card. If you don’t want to buy used then here.
How to Replace Video

RAM:
Ram prices have tanked because of bitcoin mining, so this has become quite a cheap upgrade as well. I’d recommend 16GB just because why not, but if your tight on cash 8GB is fine.
https://www.newegg.com/p/pl?N=100007609%20601190332%20601342186%20600000401&Order=BESTMATCH
How to Replace Video

CPU:
This required the most research. I’d recommend you look through this first. The wattage of the processor slot only ranges from 35w-50w according to a developer of the Alpha (Source). The socket type is LGA 1150.
If you’re going cheap, the i5-4590t (35w) and i5-4690s (65w) are both great options.
i5-4590t
i5-4690s
The i5-4690t (45w) is also great but is hard to find from a trustworthy source for a reasonable price.
If your willing to spend $100+ then easily the i7-4790t (45w). That is probably the best processor to put in the Alpha. All 45w will be used giving you 3.9 GHz Turbo. The T series apparently runs the best on the R1 according to This Reddit post.
How to Replace Video

GPU:
Coming Soon!

Maxed out Alpha R1 specs: i7-4790t, 1TB Samsung SSD, 16GB DDR3, Nvidia Geforce GTX 860m.
(Upgrading to anything better then that is pointless)

Optimizing the Alpha R1

Peripherals

submitted by Kidd-Valley to AlienwareAlpha [link] [comments]

Do we now have a potential VPN criminal conglomerate?

As many of you have already read, Private Internet Access has recently been acquired by a company named “Kape Technologies”. “Kape Technologies” is a huge company that also owns the likes of CyberGhost VPN as well as Zenmate. I decided to read more and found facts that thoroughly shocked me:
• CyberGhost was acquired by “Kape Technologies” (previously named “Crossrider”) back in 2017. “Crosrider” was known to hide malware/adware in their software and then sell data collected by it.
• The co-founder of “Kape Technologies”, Teddy Sagi was sentenced to prison in regards to fraud and bribery back in 1996.
• CyberGhost VPN service was also found to have WebRTC, IPv6 as well as DNS leaks multiple times, risking its users’ privacy.
• Private Internet Access hired Mark Karpeles (ex-CEO of MT.Gox BitCoin platform) as their CTO. Karpeles was arrested and found guilty when tampering with financial records, trying to hide the platform’s loss by combining his personal finances with the exchange’s.
• Private Internet Access’s founder, Andrew Lee, also known as “Rasengan” on HackerNews, made serious allegations against ProtonVPN.
• Allegations against NordVPN followed, where PIA’s employee was caught sharing a misleading PDF as a ‘concerned citizen’.
• An ex-employee of Private Internet Access was threatened due to disclosing management issues, therefore spilling a lot of information about the company.
• The same employee disclosed that PIA faked Reddit comments and ordered to downvote negative feedback about the product.
• Another thing to consider is that before acquisition, Private Internet Access was in debt of over $32 million.
The facts about these companies were easy to find, to be honest, I didn’t need to dig deep to find them. I am just truthfully shocked about this and how much I didn’t know about the companies beforehand. Personally, given this knowledge, I am not going to support these companies, especially when they potentially have criminal past and present activities.
P.S. Had to use my relative's account just cause someone is working hard to remove these posts :)
Edit: By the way - has anyone tried sharing these news with journalists, for example, PcMag or TechRadar (they're unbiased imho)? I don't see the story being covered at all, especially with these added details
submitted by Party_Ebb to Windscribe [link] [comments]

Fortnight Tech Roundup & Discourse - IRNSS NavIC

Fortnight Tech Roundup & Discourse - IRNSS NavIC

Welcome to this week's tech round up and discourse post.

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EBay, Stripe and Mastercard drop out of Facebook’s Libra Association techcrunch
Club Factory raises $100M to expand its lifestyle e-commerce platform in India economictimes
Donald Trump joins Amazon's video game streaming platform Twitch cnn
Bill McDermott steps down as SAP’s CEO wsj
Elon Musk says that NASA is free to share all SpaceX IP with ‘anyone it wants’ gizmodo
NASA’s new Moon-bound spacesuit is safer, smarter and much more comfortable nasa.gov
Steam will soon let you play local-only multiplayer games with far off friends pcgamer
Dyson kills its electric car project and turns to solid-state batteries guardian
Amazon Music arrives on Apple TV pocket-lint
Google takes AMP to the OpenJS Foundation openjsf
Russia’s Yandex introduces an Echo Dot-style smart speaker techcrunch
Cisco hit by an internal network outage cbronline
Xage now supports hierarchical blockchains for complex implementations globenewswire
NASCAR could debut hybrids as early as 2022 thedrive
Apple pulls HKmap from App Store, the day after Chinese state media criticized its ‘unwise and reckless decision’ to approve it cnbc
Virgin Orbit plans to send cubesats to Mars as early as 2022 cnet
Call of Duty is the biggest mobile game launch ever, with 100 million downloads independent
Pinterest launches a new ‘Lite’ app for emerging markets androidpolice
Microsoft’s Your Phone app can now route calls from your Android phone to your PC blog.windows
European risk report flags 5G security challenges techcrunch
Toyota, GM, Nvidia, Bosch, Arm and others form new autonomous driving tech consortium theiet
China attacks Apple for allowing Hong Kong crowdsourced police activity app nyt
AMD’s Radeon RX 5500 is its new entry-level competitor to Nvidia’s GTX 1650 pcworld
Amazon, Walmart confront India’s slowing economy as holiday season growth stalls techcrunch
Essential reveals Project Gem smartphone with very long, unusual design engadget
Twitter admits it used two-factor phone numbers and emails for serving targeted ads help.twitter
Arm brings custom instructions to its embedded CPUs developer.arm
Sony’s next console is the PlayStation 5, arriving holidays 2020 theverge
Chinese firms Tencent, Vivo and CCTV suspend ties with the NBA over Hong Kong tweet edition.cnn
Eight Chinese tech firms placed on US Entity List for their role in human rights violations against Muslim minority groups techcrunch
Mars Curiosity Rover finds evidence of an ancient oasis on Mars earthsky
Instagram is killing its creepy stalking feature, the Following tab androidpolice
Ex-Tinder CEO files lawsuit saying sexual assault allegations against him are defamation theverge
Fire TV might not get Disney+ as Amazon and Disney clash over ads variety
Amazon introduces a Kindle for kids indiatoday
Apple’s MacOS Catalina is now available 9to5mac
Spotify gains Siri support on iOS 13, arrives on Apple TV forbes
Disney is reportedly banning Netflix ads across its entertainment TV networks theverge
Red Dead Redemption 2 is coming to PC in November rockpapershotgun
NASA shares 3D Moon data for CG artists and creators space
PayPal is the first company to drop out of the Facebook-led Libra Association economictimes
Iranian hackers targeted US 2020 campaign, says Microsoft bbc
Apple CEO Tim Cook slams Facebook’s Libra cryptocurrency as a power grab forbes
Google-backed Dunzo raises $45M to expand its hyperlocal delivery startup in India fortuneindia
NASA’s first all-electric experimental X-plane is ready for testing nasa.gov
Facebook is being leaned on by US, UK, Australia to ditch its end-to-end encryption expansion plan macrumorsInstagram launches Threads, a Close Friends chat app with auto-status wired
India’s Fyle bags $4.5M to expand its expense management platform in the US, other international markets techcrunch
Uber launches a shift-work finder app, Uber Works, starting in Chicago tnw
Redesigned Google Shopping goes live, with price tracking, Google Lens for outfits and more pcmag
Zuckerberg Plans to Sue if Elizabeth Warren Tries to Break Up Facebook gizmodo
Samsung pulls the plug on Chinese smartphone production techcrunch
Microsoft showcases an Android Surface 'phone' and dual-screen Windows Variant cnet
Microsoft’s latest Surface Laptop arrives in 13- and 15-inch models theverge
India’s NoBroker raises $50M to help people buy and rent without real estate brokers business-standard
Cybersecurity giant Comodo can’t even keep its own website secure forums.comodo
NASA awards $43.2M to Blue Origin, SpaceX and others for tech to take us to the Moon and Mars techcrunch
NASA launches a new planet-hunting telescope using a giant balloon phys.org
UPS gets FAA approval to operate an entire drone delivery airline nyt
Streamlit launches open-source machine learning application development framework techcrunch
WhatsApp tests self-destructing messages theverge
Europe’s top court says active consent is needed for tracking cookies techcrunch
SpaceX details Starship and Super Heavy in new website techcrunch
Hyundai is getting into the flying car business newatlas
Microsoft makes Windows Virtual Desktop generally available globally zdnet
Google's Project Jacquard is available on new Levi's jackets youtube
PayPal to enter China through GoPay acquisition venturebeat

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The Indian Regional Navigation Satellite System (IRNSS) recently become fully-operational and has been provided with the operational name of NavIC (Navigation with Indian Constellation). Developed by the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) with the objective of offering positioning, navigation and timing (PNT) to the users on a variety of platforms with a 24 hour x 7 day service availability under all weather conditions - in its service area with a position accuracy of < 20 m throughout India and within the region of coverage extending about 1500 km beyond. nih.gov
Having an autonomous regional satellite navigation system of one’s own offers strategic autonomy in military operations. The GPS that we have known and used all along is the satellite-based radio navigation system owned by the US government and operated by the American Air Force. During the Kargil War 20 years ago, the US refused to provide India critical information on the movement and precise location of Paki enemy troops. toi A need for an indigenous satellite navigation was felt earlier, but Kargil experience made the nation realize it's inevitability. Geopolitical needs teaches us that some countries can deny us the service in times of conflict, a way of arm twisting.
With an accuracy of <10 m on Restricted and Encrypted Service (RES) while an accuracy of <20 m on Standard Positioning Service (SPS), IRNSS will offer 2 level of services for very differing purposes. isro.gov.in \PDF]) Almost all Military and Reconnaissance applications will utilize RES while SPS will be available for civilian uses. unvienna \PDF])

The IRNSS space segment architecture consists of 3 satellites in GEO (Geostationary Orbit) at 32.5°, 83° and 131.5° East while 4 satellites in geosynchronous orbit placed at inclination of 29° with longitude crossing at 55° and 111.75° East forming an analemma. isac.gov.in Out of the 4 GSO satellites, the first sat IRNSS-1A failed in orbit due to atmoic clock malfunction. On August 31, 2017, sat IRNSS-1H was meant to replace defunct IRNSS-1A, failed to deploy due to malfunction in payload fairing mechanism. Though failures are not uncommon in space missions of even developed nations, India is not in a position where it can afford even relatively minor glitches neither financially nor in terms of reaching the higher goals it has set for itself. firstpost

IRNSS Analemma

Unlike GPS which is dependent only on L-band, NAVIC has dual frequency (S and L bands). When low frequency signal travels through atmosphere, its velocity changes due to atmospheric disturbances. US banks on atmospheric model to assess frequency error and it has to update this model from time to time to assess the exact error. In India's case, the actual delay is assessed by measuring the difference in delay of dual frequency (S and L bands). Therefore, NavIC is not dependent on any model to find the frequency error and is more accurate than GPS. toi
Studies have also shown marked improvement in GDoP (Geometric dilution of precision) values when IRNSS is used in conjunction with GPS constellation for position fix in primary coverage region of IRNSS. Hence IRNSS can be augmented with GPS to improve position accuracy in the given region. ias.ac.in

The IRNSS is being developed parallel to the GAGAN (GPS Aided GEO Augmented Satellite Navigation) program that in essence use GPS signals for navigation but after making them much more reliable for safety critical applications like in civil aviation., the ISRO SBAS (Satellite Based Augmentation System) version of an overlay system for GNSS signal corrections. earth.esa.int As of 2013, the statutory filing for frequency spectrum of Global Indian Navigational System (GINS) satellite orbits in international space, has been completed. hindubusinessline GINS is supposed to have a constellation of 24 satellites, positioned 24,000 km (14,913 mi) above Earth. wikipedia)

On Sep 24, 2019 Global mobile telephony standards body, 3GPP, gave its approval to NaVIC (Proposed jointly by Reliance Jio and ISRO). 3gpp.org \XLSX]) The approval has been given for the system’s use in Rel-16 LTE and Rel-17 5G NR specifications, paving the way for wider commercial adoption of NaVIC, allowing it to be integrated with 4G, 5G and internet of things (IoT). 3gpp.org \ZIP]) Thus, electronics companies can start designing and building integrated circuits and mass manufacture other products uniquely created to be compatible with NavIC. From what all scant information I was able to gather it seems Broadcom was first to introduce BCM47756 3gpp.org \ZIP]) chipset integrated with NavIC and Xiaomi Mi8 was the first phone to have the capabilities. insidegnss Will the introduction of indigenous satnav be another step closer towards being a global power? Comments open.
PS: Here's an interesting presentation prepared by Space Application Center that goes a little deep inside Navigation with Indian Constellation http://www.unoosa.org/documents/pdf/icg/2018/icg13/05.pdf

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And in the last, here's 19th-Century Vision of the Year 2000 by Jean-Marc Côté and other artists issued in France in 1899, 1900, 1901 and 1910. Originally in the form of paper cards enclosed in cigarette/cigar boxes and, later, as postcards, the images depicted the world as it was imagined to be like in the then distant year of 2000.
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Source: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Category:France_in_XXI_Century_(fiction))
submitted by chummekiraat to IndiaSpeaks [link] [comments]

Transcript of discussion between an ASIC designer and several proof-of-work designers from #monero-pow channel on Freenode this morning

[08:07:01] lukminer contains precompiled cn/r math sequences for some blocks: https://lukminer.org/2019/03/09/oh-kay-v4r-here-we-come/
[08:07:11] try that with RandomX :P
[08:09:00] tevador: are you ready for some RandomX feedback? it looks like the CNv4 is slowly stabilizing, hashrate comes down...
[08:09:07] how does it even make sense to precompile it?
[08:09:14] mine 1% faster for 2 minutes?
[08:09:35] naturally we think the entire asic-resistance strategy is doomed to fail :) but that's a high-level thing, who knows. people may think it's great.
[08:09:49] about RandomX: looks like the cache size was chosen to make it GPU-hard
[08:09:56] looking forward to more docs
[08:11:38] after initial skimming, I would think it's possible to make a 10x asic for RandomX. But at least for us, we will only make an ASIC if there is not a total ASIC hostility there in the first place. That's better for the secret miners then.
[08:13:12] What I propose is this: we are working on an Ethash ASIC right now, and once we have that working, we would invite tevador or whoever wants to come to HK/Shenzhen and we walk you guys through how we would make a RandomX ASIC. You can then process this input in any way you like. Something like that.
[08:13:49] unless asics (or other accelerators) re-emerge on XMR faster than expected, it looks like there is a little bit of time before RandomX rollout
[08:14:22] 10x in what measure? $/hash or watt/hash?
[08:14:46] watt/hash
[08:15:19] so you can make 10 times more efficient double precisio FPU?
[08:16:02] like I said let's try to be productive. You are having me here, let's work together!
[08:16:15] continue with RandomX, publish more docs. that's always helpful.
[08:16:37] I'm trying to understand how it's possible at all. Why AMD/Intel are so inefficient at running FP calculations?
[08:18:05] midipoet ([email protected]/web/irccloud.com/x-vszshqqxwybvtsjm) has joined #monero-pow
[08:18:17] hardware development works the other way round. We start with 1) math then 2) optimization priority 3) hw/sw boundary 4) IP selection 5) physical implementation
[08:22:32] This still doesn't explain at which point you get 10x
[08:23:07] Weren't you the ones claiming "We can accelerate ProgPoW by a factor of 3x to 8x." ? I find it hard to believe too.
[08:30:20] sure
[08:30:26] so my idea: first we finish our current chip
[08:30:35] from simulation to silicon :)
[08:30:40] we love this stuff... we do it anyway
[08:30:59] now we have a communication channel, and we don't call each other names immediately anymore: big progress!
[08:31:06] you know, we russians have a saying "it was smooth on paper, but they forgot about ravines"
[08:31:12] So I need a bit more details
[08:31:16] ha ha. good!
[08:31:31] that's why I want to avoid to just make claims
[08:31:34] let's work
[08:31:40] RandomX comes in Sep/Oct, right?
[08:31:45] Maybe
[08:32:20] We need to audit it first
[08:32:31] ok
[08:32:59] we don't make chips to prove sw devs that their assumptions about hardware are wrong. especially not if these guys then promptly hardfork and move to the next wrong assumption :)
[08:33:10] from the outside, this only means that hw & sw are devaluing each other
[08:33:24] neither of us should do this
[08:33:47] we are making chips that can hopefully accelerate more crypto ops in the future
[08:33:52] signing, verifying, proving, etc.
[08:34:02] PoW is just a feature like others
[08:34:18] sech1: is it easy for you to come to Hong Kong? (visa-wise)
[08:34:20] or difficult?
[08:34:33] or are you there sometimes?
[08:34:41] It's kind of far away
[08:35:13] we are looking forward to more RandomX docs. that's the first step.
[08:35:31] I want to avoid that we have some meme "Linzhi says they can accelerate XYZ by factor x" .... "ha ha ha"
[08:35:37] right? we don't want that :)
[08:35:39] doc is almost finished
[08:35:40] What docs do you need? It's described pretty good
[08:35:41] so I better say nothing now
[08:35:50] we focus on our Ethash chip
[08:36:05] then based on that, we are happy to walk interested people through the design and what else it can do
[08:36:22] that's a better approach from my view than making claims that are laughed away (rightfully so, because no silicon...)
[08:36:37] ethash ASIC is basically a glorified memory controller
[08:36:39] sech1: tevador said something more is coming (he just did it again)
[08:37:03] yes, some parts of RandomX are not described well
[08:37:10] like dataset access logic
[08:37:37] RandomX looks like progpow for CPU
[08:37:54] yes
[08:38:03] it is designed to reflect CPU
[08:38:34] so any ASIC for it = CPU in essence
[08:39:04] of course there are still some things in regular CPU that can be thrown away for RandomX
[08:40:20] uncore parts are not used, but those will use very little power
[08:40:37] except for memory controller
[08:41:09] I'm just surprised sometimes, ok? let me ask: have you designed or taped out an asic before? isn't it risky to make assumptions about things that are largely unknown?
[08:41:23] I would worry
[08:41:31] that I get something wrong...
[08:41:44] but I also worry like crazy that CNv4 will blow up, where you guys seem to be relaxed
[08:42:06] I didn't want to bring up anything RandomX because CNv4 is such a nailbiter... :)
[08:42:15] how do you guys know you don't have asics in a week or two?
[08:42:38] we don't have experience with ASIC design, but RandomX is simply designed to exactly fit CPU capabilities, which is the best you can do anyways
[08:43:09] similar as ProgPoW did with GPUs
[08:43:14] some people say they want to do asic-resistance only until the vast majority of coins has been issued
[08:43:21] that's at least reasonable
[08:43:43] yeah but progpow totally will not work as advertised :)
[08:44:08] yeah, I've seen that comment about progpow a few times already
[08:44:11] which is no surprise if you know it's just a random sales story to sell a few more GPUs
[08:44:13] RandomX is not permanent, we are expecting to switch to ASIC friendly in a few years if possible
[08:44:18] yes
[08:44:21] that makes sense
[08:44:40] linzhi-sonia: how so? will it break or will it be asic-able with decent performance gains?
[08:44:41] are you happy with CNv4 so far?
[08:45:10] ah, long story. progpow is a masterpiece of deception, let's not get into it here.
[08:45:21] if you know chip marketing it makes more sense
[08:45:24] linzhi-sonia: So far? lol! a bit early to tell, don't you think?
[08:45:35] the diff is coming down
[08:45:41] first few hours looked scary
[08:45:43] I remain skeptical: I only see ASICs being reasonable if they are already as ubiquitous as smartphones
[08:45:46] yes, so far so good
[08:46:01] we kbew the diff would not come down ubtil affter block 75
[08:46:10] yes
[08:46:22] but first few hours it looks like only 5% hashrate left
[08:46:27] looked
[08:46:29] now it's better
[08:46:51] the next worry is: when will "unexplainable" hashrate come back?
[08:47:00] you hope 2-3 months? more?
[08:47:05] so give it another couple of days. will probably overshoot to the downside, and then rise a bit as miners get updated and return
[08:47:22] 3 months minimum turnaround, yes
[08:47:28] nah
[08:47:36] don't underestimate asicmakers :)
[08:47:54] you guys don't get #1 priority on chip fabs
[08:47:56] 3 months = 90 days. do you know what is happening in those 90 days exactly? I'm pretty sure you don't. same thing as before.
[08:48:13] we don't do any secret chips btw
[08:48:21] 3 months assumes they had a complete design ready to go, and added the last minute change in 1 day
[08:48:24] do you know who is behind the hashrate that is now bricked?
[08:48:27] innosilicon?
[08:48:34] hyc: no no, and no. :)
[08:48:44] hyc: have you designed or taped out a chip before?
[08:48:51] yes, many years ago
[08:49:10] then you should know that 90 days is not a fixed number
[08:49:35] sure, but like I said, other makers have greater demand
[08:49:35] especially not if you can prepare, if you just have to modify something, or you have more programmability in the chip than some people assume
[08:50:07] we are chipmakers, we would never dare to do what you guys are doing with CNv4 :) but maybe that just means you are cooler!
[08:50:07] and yes, programmability makes some aspect of turnaround easier
[08:50:10] all fine
[08:50:10] I hope it works!
[08:50:28] do you know who is behind the hashrate that is now bricked?
[08:50:29] inno?
[08:50:41] we suspect so, but have no evidence
[08:50:44] maybe we can try to find them, but we cannot spend too much time on this
[08:50:53] it's probably not so much of a secret
[08:51:01] why should it be, right?
[08:51:10] devs want this cat-and-mouse game? devs get it...
[08:51:35] there was one leak saying it's innosilicon
[08:51:36] so you think 3 months, ok
[08:51:43] inno is cool
[08:51:46] good team
[08:51:49] IP design house
[08:51:54] in Wuhan
[08:52:06] they send their people to conferences with fake biz cards :)
[08:52:19] pretending to be other companies?
[08:52:26] sure
[08:52:28] ha ha
[08:52:39] so when we see them, we look at whatever card they carry and laugh :)
[08:52:52] they are perfectly suited for secret mining games
[08:52:59] they made at most $6 million in 2 months of mining, so I wonder if it was worth it
[08:53:10] yeah. no way to know
[08:53:15] but it's good that you calculate!
[08:53:24] this is all about cost/benefit
[08:53:25] then you also understand - imagine the value of XMR goes up 5x, 10x
[08:53:34] that whole "asic resistance" thing will come down like a house of cards
[08:53:41] I would imagine they sell immediately
[08:53:53] the investor may fully understand the risk
[08:53:57] the buyer
[08:54:13] it's not healthy, but that's another discussion
[08:54:23] so mid-June
[08:54:27] let's see
[08:54:49] I would be susprised if CNv4 ASICs show up at all
[08:54:56] surprised*
[08:54:56] why?
[08:55:05] is only an economic question
[08:55:12] yeah should be interesting. FPGAs will be near their limits as well
[08:55:16] unless XMR goes up a lot
[08:55:19] no, not *only*. it's also a technology question
[08:55:44] you believe CNv4 is "asic resistant"? which feature?
[08:55:53] it's not
[08:55:59] cnv4 = Rabdomx ?
[08:56:03] no
[08:56:07] cnv4=cryptinight/r
[08:56:11] ah
[08:56:18] CNv4 is the one we have now, I think
[08:56:21] since yesterday
[08:56:30] it's plenty enough resistant for current XMR price
[08:56:45] that may be, yes!
[08:56:55] I look at daily payouts. XMR = ca. 100k USD / day
[08:57:03] it can hold until October, but it's not asic resistant
[08:57:23] well, last 24h only 22,442 USD :)
[08:57:32] I think 80 h/s per watt ASICs are possible for CNv4
[08:57:38] linzhi-sonia where do you produce your chips? TSMC?
[08:57:44] I'm cruious how you would expect to build a randomX ASIC that outperforms ARM cores for efficiency, or Intel cores for raw speed
[08:57:48] curious
[08:58:01] yes, tsmc
[08:58:21] Our team did the world's first bitcoin asic, Avalon
[08:58:25] and upcoming 2nd gen Ryzens (64-core EPYC) will be a blast at RandomX
[08:58:28] designed and manufactured
[08:58:53] still being marketed?
[08:59:03] linzhi-sonia: do you understand what xmr wants to achieve, community-wise?
[08:59:14] Avalon? as part of Canaan Creative, yes I think so.
[08:59:25] there's not much interesting oing on in SHA256
[08:59:29] Inge-: I would think so, but please speak
[08:59:32] hyc: yes
[09:00:28] linzhi-sonia: i am curious to hear your thoughts. I am fairly new to this space myself...
[09:00:51] oh
[09:00:56] we are grandpas, and grandmas
[09:01:36] yet I have no problem understanding why ASICS are currently reviled.
[09:01:48] xmr's main differentiators to, let's say btc, are anonymity and fungibility
[09:01:58] I find the client terribly slow btw
[09:02:21] and I think the asic-forking since last may is wrong, doesn't create value and doesn't help with the project objectives
[09:02:25] which "the client" ?
[09:02:52] Monero GUI client maybe
[09:03:12] MacOS, yes
[09:03:28] What exactly is slow?
[09:03:30] linzhi-sonia: I run my own node, and use the CLI and Monerujo. Have not had issues.
[09:03:49] staying in sync
[09:03:49] linzhi-sonia: decentralization is also a key principle
[09:03:56] one that Bitcoin has failed to maintain
[09:04:39] hmm
[09:05:00] looks fairly decentralized to me. decentralization is the result of 3 goals imo: resilient, trustless, permissionless
[09:05:28] don't ask a hardware maker about physical decentralization. that's too ideological. we focus on logical decentralization.
[09:06:11] physical decentralization is important. with bulk of bitnoin mining centered on Chinese hydroelectric dams
[09:06:19] have you thought about including block data in the PoW?
[09:06:41] yes, of course.
[09:07:39] is that already in an algo?
[09:08:10] hyc: about "centered on chinese hydro" - what is your source? the best paper I know is this: https://coinshares.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2018/11/Mining-Whitepaper-Final.pdf
[09:09:01] linzhi-sonia: do you mine on your ASICs before you sell them?
[09:09:13] besides testing of course
[09:09:45] that paper puts Chinese btc miners at 60% max
[09:10:05] tevador: I think everybody learned that that is not healthy long-term!
[09:10:16] because it gives the chipmaker a cost advantage over its own customers
[09:10:33] and cost advantage leads to centralization (physical and logical)
[09:10:51] you guys should know who finances progpow and why :)
[09:11:05] but let's not get into this, ha ha. want to keep the channel civilized. right OhGodAGirl ? :)
[09:11:34] tevador: so the answer is no! 100% and definitely no
[09:11:54] that "self-mining" disease was one of the problems we have now with asics, and their bad reputation (rightfully so)
[09:13:08] I plan to write a nice short 2-page paper or so on our chip design process. maybe it's interesting to some people here.
[09:13:15] basically the 5 steps I mentioned before, from math to physical
[09:13:32] linzhi-sonia: the paper you linked puts 48% of bitcoin mining in Sichuan. the total in China is much more than 60%
[09:13:38] need to run it by a few people to fix bugs, will post it here when published
[09:14:06] hyc: ok! I am just sharing the "best" document I know today. it definitely may be wrong and there may be a better one now.
[09:14:18] hyc: if you see some reports, please share
[09:14:51] hey I am really curious about this: where is a PoW algo that puts block data into the PoW?
[09:15:02] the previous paper I read is from here http://hackingdistributed.com/2018/01/15/decentralization-bitcoin-ethereum/
[09:15:38] hyc: you said that already exists? (block data in PoW)
[09:15:45] it would make verification harder
[09:15:49] linzhi-sonia: https://the-eye.eu/public/Books/campdivision.com/PDF/Computers%20General/Privacy/bitcoin/meh/hashimoto.pdf
[09:15:51] but for chips it would be interesting
[09:15:52] we discussed the possibility about a year ago https://www.reddit.com/Monero/comments/8bshrx/what_we_need_to_know_about_proof_of_work_pow/
[09:16:05] oh good links! thanks! need to read...
[09:16:06] I think that paper by dryja was original
[09:17:53] since we have a nice flow - second question I'm very curious about: has anyone thought about in-protocol rewards for other functions?
[09:18:55] we've discussed micropayments for wallets to use remote nodes
[09:18:55] you know there is a lot of work in other coins about STARK provers, zero-knowledge, etc. many of those things very compute intense, or need to be outsourced to a service (zether). For chipmakers, in-protocol rewards create an economic incentive to accelerate those things.
[09:19:50] whenever there is an in-protocol reward, you may get the power of ASICs doing something you actually want to happen
[09:19:52] it would be nice if there was some economic reward for running a fullnode, but no one has come up with much more than that afaik
[09:19:54] instead of fighting them off
[09:20:29] you need to use asics, not fight them. that's an obvious thing to say for an asicmaker...
[09:20:41] in-protocol rewards can be very powerful
[09:20:50] like I said before - unless the ASICs are so useful they're embedded in every smartphone, I dont see them being a positive for decentralization
[09:21:17] if they're a separate product, the average consumer is not going to buy them
[09:21:20] now I was talking about speedup of verifying, signing, proving, etc.
[09:21:23] they won't even know what they are
[09:22:07] if anybody wants to talk about or design in-protocol rewards, please come talk to us
[09:22:08] the average consumer also doesn't use general purpose hardware to secure blockchains either
[09:22:14] not just for PoW, in fact *NOT* for PoW
[09:22:32] it requires sw/hw co-design
[09:23:10] we are in long-term discussions/collaboration over this with Ethereum, Bitcoin Cash. just talk right now.
[09:23:16] this was recently published though suggesting more uptake though I guess https://btcmanager.com/college-students-are-the-second-biggest-miners-of-cryptocurrency/
[09:23:29] I find it pretty hard to believe their numbers
[09:24:03] well
[09:24:09] sorry, original article: https://www.pcmag.com/news/366952/college-kids-are-using-campus-electricity-to-mine-crypto
[09:24:11] just talk, no? rumors
[09:24:18] college students are already more educated than the average consumer
[09:24:29] we are not seeing many such customers anymore
[09:24:30] it's data from cisco monitoring network traffic
[09:24:33] and they're always looking for free money
[09:24:48] of course anyone with "free" electricity is inclined to do it
[09:24:57] but look at the rates, cannot make much money
[09:26:06] Ethereum is a bloated collection of bugs wrapped in a UI. I suppose they need all the help they can get
[09:26:29] Bitcoin Cash ... just another get rich quick scheme
[09:26:38] hmm :)
[09:26:51] I'll give it back to you, ok? ha ha. arrogance comes before the fall...
[09:27:17] maye we should have a little fun with CNv4 mining :)
[09:27:25] ;)
[09:27:38] come on. anyone who has watched their track record... $75M lost in ETH at DAO hack
[09:27:50] every smart contract that comes along is just waiting for another hack
[09:27:58] I just wanted to throw out the "in-protocol reward" thing, maybe someone sees the idea and wants to cowork. maybe not. maybe it's a stupid idea.
[09:29:18] linzhi-sonia: any thoughts on CN-GPU?
[09:29:55] CN-GPU has one positive aspect - it wastes chip area to implement all 18 hash algorithms
[09:30:19] you will always hear roughly the same feedback from me:
[09:30:52] "This algorithm very different, it heavy use floating point operations to hurt FPGAs and general purpose CPUs"
[09:30:56] the problem is, if it's profitable for people to buy ASIC miners and mine, it's always more profitable for the manufacturer to not sell and mine themselves
[09:31:02] "hurt"
[09:31:07] what is the point of this?
[09:31:15] it totally doesn't work
[09:31:24] you are hurting noone, just demonstrating lack of ability to think
[09:31:41] what is better: algo designed for chip, or chip designed for algo?
[09:31:43] fireice does it on daily basis, CN-GPU is a joke
[09:31:53] tevador: that's not really true, especially in a market with such large price fluctuations as cryptocurrency
[09:32:12] it's far less risky to sell miners than mine with them and pray that price doesn't crash for next six months
[09:32:14] I think it's great that crypto has a nice group of asicmakers now, hw & sw will cowork well
[09:32:36] jwinterm yes, that's why they premine them and sell after
[09:32:41] PoW is about being thermodynamically and cryptographically provable
[09:32:45] premining with them is taking on that risk
[09:32:49] not "fork when we think there are asics"
[09:32:51] business is about risk minimization
[09:32:54] that's just fear-driven
[09:33:05] Inge-: that's roughly the feedback
[09:33:24] I'm not saying it hasn't happened, but I think it's not so simple as saying "it always happens"
[09:34:00] jwinterm: it has certainly happened on BTC. and also on XMR.
[09:34:19] ironically, please think about it: these kinds of algos indeed prove the limits of the chips they were designed for. but they don't prove that you cannot implement the same algo differently! cannot!
[09:34:26] Risk minimization is not starting a business at all.
[09:34:34] proof-of-gpu-limit. proof-of-cpu-limit.
[09:34:37] imagine you have a money printing machine, would you sell it?
[09:34:39] proves nothing for an ASIC :)
[09:35:05] linzhi-sonia: thanks. I dont think anyone believes you can't make a more efficient cn-gpu asic than a gpu - but that it would not be orders of magnitude faster...
[09:35:24] ok
[09:35:44] like I say. these algos are, that's really ironic, designed to prove the limitatios of a particular chip in mind of the designer
[09:35:50] exactly the wrong way round :)
[09:36:16] like the cache size in RandomX :)
[09:36:18] beautiful
[09:36:29] someone looked at GPU designs
[09:37:31] linzhi-sonia can you elaborate? Cache size in RandomX was selected to fit CPU cache
[09:37:52] yes
[09:38:03] too large for GPU
[09:38:11] as I said, we are designing the algorithm to exactly fit CPU capabilities, I do not claim an ASIC cannot be more efficient
[09:38:16] ok!
[09:38:29] when will you do the audit?
[09:38:35] will the results be published in a document or so?
[09:38:37] I claim that single-chip ASIC is not viable, though
[09:39:06] you guys are brave, noone disputes that. 3 anti-asic hardforks now!
[09:39:18] 4th one coming
[09:39:31] 3 forks were done not only for this
[09:39:38] they had scheduled updates in the first place
[09:48:10] Monero is the #1 anti-asic fighter
[09:48:25] Monero is #1 for a lot of reasons ;)
[09:48:40] It's the coin with the most hycs.
[09:48:55] mooooo
[09:59:06] sneaky integer overflow, bug squished
[10:38:00] p0nziph0ne ([email protected]/vpn/privateinternetaccess/p0nziph0ne) has joined #monero-pow
[11:10:53] The convo here is wild
[11:12:29] it's like geo-politics at the intersection of software and hardware manufacturing for thermoeconomic value.
[11:13:05] ..and on a Sunday.
[11:15:43] midipoet: hw and sw should work together and stop silly games to devalue each other. to outsiders this is totally not attractive.
[11:16:07] I appreciate the positive energy here to try to listen, learn, understand.
[11:16:10] that's a start
[11:16:48] <-- p0nziph0ne ([email protected]/vpn/privateinternetaccess/p0nziph0ne) has quit (Quit: Leaving)
[11:16:54] we won't do silly mining against xmr "community" wishes, but not because we couldn'd do it, but because it's the wrong direction in the long run, for both sides
[11:18:57] linzhi-sonia: I agree to some extent. Though, in reality, there will always be divergence between social worlds. Not every body has the same vision of the future. Reaching societal consensus on reality tomorrow is not always easy
[11:20:25] absolutely. especially at a time when there is so much profit to be made from divisiveness.
[11:20:37] someone will want to make that profit, for sure
[11:24:32] Yes. Money distorts.
[11:24:47] Or wealth...one of the two
[11:26:35] Too much physical money will distort rays of light passing close to it indeed.
submitted by jwinterm to Monero [link] [comments]

10 Best Places to Learn Gift Cards

10 Best Places to Learn Gift Cards

A brief collection of 10 best resources to learn about gift cards, how they work, and other pro level factors to buy, sell, and use gift cards.
When we started to research the gift card industry both as a business and as a consumer we realized how little information is out there. On the surface gift cards are a simple concept, however many companies handle gift cards differently in terms of refund policy, available bulk discounts, distribution locations, secondary market value, and other factors.
Below are 10 resources you can use with a brief descriptions that should help filter the signal through the noise. Similar to the article Top 10 Affiliate Programs to Earn Bitcoin, we break down our favorite 10 links to help you get a jump start on the topic. If you have any specific questions, ask us and we'll do our best to help you research the answer.

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The Motley Foolhttps://www.fool.com/slideshow/35-things-you-should-know-about-gift-cards/
  • A 35 slide presentation including how big the gift card industry is, what the challenges are, and ideas for returning cards. It's a short skim, but gives good ideas about finding discount gift cards.

Money Crashershttps://www.moneycrashers.com/types-gift-cards-buy-sell-redeem/
  • Article that encapsulates the types of gift cards, consumers that are involved in the gift card trade industry and factors to consider when getting one. It also discusses how one can use gift cards and what you can do for unused ones. A short slideshow to give you a high level idea of the gift card industry.

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CoinSutrahttps://coinsutra.com/purse-review-trade-amazon-gift-cards-amazon/
  • Describes how you can get bitcoins with your Amazon gift card balance via Purse.io. The article details steps from creating a Purse account to placing orders for other users from the same app in exchange for bitcoins. Purse is a great resource if you want to buy products for others using your Amazon account to get access to bitcoin (at above market value).

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Creditcards.comhttps://www.creditcards.com/credit-card-news/7-things-need-know-about-gift-cards-1271.php
  • A popular resource to compare credit card programs based on every cost and perk you can think of. They also do a fair amount of coverage on gift cards, but since gift cards don't change nearly as fast as credit cards, the coverage is few and far between.
CNBChttps://www.cnbc.com/2018/12/20/how-to-swap-an-unwanted-gift-card-for-cash.html
  • Tips on how you can get the most of your gift cards especially the unused ones after the holiday season. Being a huge business at almost $30 billion just during the holiday, learn how you can turn these to cash instead of getting hawked online shelved and forgotten.

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PCMaghttps://www.pcmag.com/feature/358125/how-to-buy-sell-and-swap-gift-cards
  • Learn how you can turn your unwanted gift cards into cash, or even into actual gift card brands you need using CardCash.com with a step by step guide. You can use your credit card which is a nice perk, but the discounts are very low.

CNEThttps://www.cnet.com/how-to/how-to-sell-or-swap-gift-cards-amazon-ebay/
  • Provides information on how and where to exchange unused gift cards for cash or other gift card brands. Details about online trading platforms like Cardpool, CardCash and Raise are presented concisely such as card brands, guarantee period, buyer and seller rates as well as how trading is done

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Dough Rollerhttps://www.doughroller.net/personal-finance/where-to-sell-gift-cards/
  • Lists 7 online platforms where you can sell unwanted or unused gift cards for cash. The list includes Raise.com , Cardpool, Giftcard Granny, CardKangaroo, CardCash, ABC Gift Cards and GC Spread.


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Slickdealshttps://slickdeals.net/article/deal-guide/best-places-to-sell-and-trade-gift-cards/
  • This article provides 4 card exchange sites that helps you sell your unwanted or unused gift cards for cash. It provides sample payouts and organizes these sites based on benefits such as payouts, brand selection or ease of use.

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U.S. Newshttps://money.usnews.com/money/personal-finance/spending/articles/how-to-sell-gift-cards
submitted by levi_d-19 to Redeeem [link] [comments]

US Government Sues Edward Snowden, Moves to Seize Proceeds From His New Book

This is the best tl;dr I could make, original reduced by 32%. (I'm a bot)
Former NSA contractor Edward Snowden's new memoir goes on sale today, but the Justice Department has a filed lawsuit to confiscate all proceeds made from the new book.
The US Justice Department has sued NSA leaker Edward Snowden in a bid to confiscate the proceeds from his new book.
The book, Permanent Record, recounts Snowden's time as an NSA contractor and his efforts to expose the US government's mass surveillance activities.
Although the memoir goes on sale today, the DOJ announced that it wants to recover all proceeds from the book because it technically violates a non-disclosure agreements Snowden signed with the CIA and NSA. According to US prosecutors, Snowden should have let the country's top two spy agencies review the book for approval before its publication.
Interestingly, the feds are not trying to stop the book's publication.
Rather, the goal is to prevent its publisher, MacMillan Publishers, from sending any of the book's proceeds to Snowden.
Summary Source | FAQ | Feedback | Top keywords: book#1 Snowden#2 NSA#3 proceeds#4 new#5
Post found in /privacy and /Bitcoin.
NOTICE: This thread is for discussing the submission topic. Please do not discuss the concept of the autotldr bot here.
submitted by autotldr to autotldr [link] [comments]

Console gaming is hardly different from PC gaming, and much of what people say about PC gaming to put it above console gaming is often wrong.

I’m not sure about you, but for the past few years, I’ve been hearing people go on and on about PCs "superiority" to the console market. People cite various reasons why they believe gaming on a PC is “objectively” better than console gaming, often for reasons related to power, costs, ease-of-use, and freedom.
…Only problem: much of what they say is wrong.
There are many misconceptions being thrown about PC gaming vs Console gaming, that I believe need to be addressed. This isn’t about “PC gamers being wrong,” or “consoles being the best,” absolutely not. I just want to cut through some of the stuff people use to put down console gaming, and show that console gaming is incredibly similar to PC gaming. I mean, yes, this is someone who mainly games on console, but I also am getting a new PC that I will game on as well, not to mention the 30 PC games I already own and play. I’m not particularly partial to one over the other.
Now I will mainly be focusing on the PlayStation side of the consoles, because I know it best, but much of what I say will apply to Xbox as well. Just because I don’t point out many specific Xbox examples, doesn’t mean that they aren’t out there.

“PCs can use TVs and monitors.”

This one isn’t so much of a misconception as it is the implication of one, and overall just… confusing. This is in some articles and the pcmasterrace “why choose a PC” section, where they’re practically implying that consoles can’t do this. I mean, yes, as long as the ports of your PC match up with your screen(s) inputs, you could plug a PC into either… but you could do the same with a console, again, as long as the ports match up.
I’m guessing the idea here is that gaming monitors often use Displayport, as do most dedicated GPUs, and consoles are generally restricted to HDMI… But even so, monitors often have HDMI ports. In fact, PC Magazine has just released their list of the best gaming monitors of 2017, and every single one of them has an HDMI port. A PS4 can be plugged into these just as easily as a GTX 1080.
I mean, even if the monitoTV doesn’t have HDMI or AV to connect with your console, just use an adaptor. If you have a PC with ports that doesn’t match your monitoTV… use an adapter. I don’t know what the point of this argument is, but it’s made a worrying amount of times.

“On PC, you have a wide range of controller options, but on console you’re stuck with the standard controller."

Are you on PlayStation and wish you could use a specific type of controller that suits your favorite kind of gameplay? Despite what some may believe, you have just as many options as PC.
Want to play fighting games with a classic arcade-style board, featuring the buttons and joystick? Here you go!
Want to get serious about racing and get something more accurate and immersive than a controller? Got you covered.
Absolutely crazy about flying games and, like the racers, want something better than a controller? Enjoy!
Want Wii-style motion controls? Been around since the PS3. If you prefer the form factor of the Xbox One controller but you own a PS4, Hori’s got you covered. And of course, if keyboard and mouse it what keeps you on PC, there’s a PlayStation compatible solution for that. Want to use the keyboard and mouse that you already own? Where there’s a will, there’s a way.
Of course, these aren’t isolated examples, there are plenty of options for each of these kind of controllers. You don’t have to be on PC to enjoy alternate controllers.

“On PC you could use Steam Link to play anywhere in your house and share games with others.”

PS4 Remote play app on PC/Mac, PSTV, and PS Vita.
PS Family Sharing.
Using the same PSN account on multiple PS4s/Xbox Ones and PS3s/360s, or using multiple accounts on the same console.
In fact, if multiple users are on the same PS4, only one has to buy the game for both users to play it on that one PS4. On top of that, only one of them has to have PS Plus for both to play online (if the one with PS Plus registers the PS4 as their main system).
PS4 Share Play; if two people on separate PS4s want to play a game together that only one of them owns, they can join a Party and the owner of the game can have their friend play with them in the game.
Need I say more?

“Gaming is more expensive on console.”

Part one, the Software
This is one that I find… genuinely surprising. There’s been a few times I’ve mentioned that part of the reason I chose a PS4 is for budget gaming, only to told that “games are cheaper on Steam.” To be fair, there are a few games on PSN/XBL that are more expensive than they are on Steam, so I can see how someone could believe this… but apparently they forgot about disks.
Dirt Rally, a hardcore racing sim game that’s… still $60 on all 3 platforms digitally… even though its successor is out.
So does this mean you have to pay full retail for this racing experience? Nope, because disk prices.
Just Cause 3, an insane open-world experience that could essentially be summed up as “break stuff, screw physics.” And it’s a good example of where the Steam price is lower than PSN and XBL:
Not by much, but still cheaper on Steam, so cheaper on PC… Until you look at the disk prices.
See my point? Often times the game is cheaper on console because of the disk alternative that’s available for practically every console-available game. Even when the game is brand new.
Dirt 4 - Remember that Dirt Rally successor I mentioned?
Yes, you could either buy this relatively new game digitally for $60, or just pick up the disk for a discounted price. And again, this is for a game that came out 2 months ago, and even it’s predecessor’s digital cost is locked at $60. Of course, I’m not going to ignore the fact that Dirt 4 is currently (as of writing this) discounted on Steam, but on PSN it also happens to be discounted for about the same amount.
Part 2: the Subscription
Now… let’s not ignore the elephant in the room: PS Plus and Xbox Gold. Now these would be ignorable, if they weren’t required for online play (on the PlayStation side, it’s only required for PS4, but still). So yes, it’s still something that will be included in the cost of your PS4 or Xbox One/360, assuming you play online. Bummer, right?
Here’s the thing, although that’s the case, although you have to factor in this $60 cost with your console, you can make it balance out, at worst, and make it work out for you as a budget gamer, at best. As nice as it would be to not have to deal with the price if you don’t want to, it’s not like it’s a problem if you use it correctly.
Imagine going to a new restaurant. This restaurant has some meals that you can’t get anywhere else, and fair prices compared to competitors. Only problem: you have to pay a membership fee to have the sides. Now you can have the main course, sit down and enjoy your steak or pasta, but if you want to have a side to have a full meal, you have to pay an annual fee.
Sounds shitty, right? But here’s the thing: not only does this membership allow you to have sides with your meal, but it also allows you to eat two meals for free every month, and also gives you exclusive discounts for other meals, drinks, and desserts.
Let’s look at PS Plus for a minute: for $60 per year, you get:
  • 2 free PS4 games, every month
  • 2 free PS3 games, every month
  • 1 PS4/PS3 and Vita compatible game, and 1 Vita-only game, every month
  • Exclusive/Extended discounts, especially during the weekly/seasonal sales (though you don’t need PS Plus to get sales, PS Plus members get to enjoy the best sales)
  • access to online multiplayer
So yes, you’re paying extra because of that membership, but what you get with that deal pays for it and then some. In fact, let’s ignore the discounts for a minute: you get 24 free PS4 games, 24 free PS3 games, and 12 Vita only + 12 Vita compatible games, up to 72 free games every year. Even if you only one of these consoles, that’s still 24 free games a year. Sure, maybe you get games for the month that you don’t like, then just wait until next month.
In fact, let’s look at Just Cause 3 again. It was free for PS Plus members in August, which is a pretty big deal. Why is this significant? Because it’s, again, a $60 digital game. That means with this one download, you’ve balanced out your $60 annual fee. Meaning? Every free game after that is money saved, every discount after that is money saved. And this is a trend: every year, PS Plus will release a game that balances out the entire service cost, then another 23 more that will only add icing to that budget cake. Though, you could just count games as paying off PS Plus until you hit $60 in savings, but still.
All in all, PS Plus, and Xbox Gold which offers similar options, saves you money. On top of that, again, you don't need to have these to get discounts, but with these memberships, you get more discounts.
Now, I’ve seen a few Steam games go up for free for a week, but what about being free for an entire month? Not to mention that; even if you want to talk about Steam Summer Sales, what about the PSN summer sale, or again, disc sale discounts? Now a lot of research and math would be needed to see if every console gamer would save money compared to every Steam gamer for the same games, but at the very least? The costs will balance out, at worst.
Part 3, the Systems
  • Xbox and PS2: $299
  • Xbox 360 and PS3: $299 and $499, respectively
  • Xbox One and PS4: $499 and $399, respectively.
Rounded up a few dollars, that’s $1,000 - $1,300 in day-one consoles, just to keep up with the games! Crazy right? So called budget systems, such a rip-off.
Well, keep in mind that the generations here aren’t short.
The 6th generation, from the launch of the PS2 to the launch of the next generation consoles, lasted 5 years, 6 years based on the launch of the PS3 (though you could say it was 9 or 14, since the Xbox wasn’t discontinued until 2009, and the PS2 was supported all the way to 2014, a year after the PS4 was released). The 7th gen lasted 7 - 8 years, again depending on whether you count the launch of the Xbox 360 to PS3. The 8th gen so far has lasted 4 years. That’s 17 years that the console money is spread over. If you had a Netflix subscription for it’s original $8 monthly plan for that amount of time, that would be over $1,600 total.
And let’s be fair here, just like you could upgrade your PC hardware whenever you wanted, you didn’t have to get a console from launch. Let’s look at PlayStation again for example: In 2002, only two years after its release, the PS2 retail price was cut from $300 to $200. The PS3 Slim, released 3 years after the original, was $300, $100-$200 lower than the retail cost. The PS4? You could’ve either gotten the Uncharted bundle for $350, or one of the PS4 Slim bundles for $250. This all brings it down to $750 - $850, which again, is spread over a decade and a half. This isn’t even counting used consoles, sales, or the further price cuts that I didn’t mention.
Even if that still sounds like a lot of money to you, even if you’re laughing at the thought of buying new systems every several years, because your PC “is never obsolete,” tell me: how many parts have you changed out in your PC over the years? How many GPUs have you been through? CPUs? Motherboards? RAM sticks, monitors, keyboards, mice, CPU coolers, hard drives— that adds up. You don’t need to replace your entire system to spend a lot of money on hardware.
Even if you weren’t upgrading for the sake of upgrading, I’d be amazed if the hardware you’ve been pushing by gaming would last for about 1/3 of that 17 year period. Computer parts aren’t designed to last forever, and really won’t when you’re pushing them with intensive gaming for hours upon hours. Generally speaking, your components might last you 6-8 years, if you’ve got the high-end stuff. But let’s assume you bought a system 17 years ago that was a beast for it’s time, something so powerful, that even if it’s parts have degraded over time, it’s still going strong. Problem is: you will have to upgrade something eventually.
Even if you’ve managed to get this far into the gaming realm with the same 17 year old hardware, I’m betting you didn’t do it with a 17 year Operating System. How much did Windows 7 cost you? Or 8.1? Or 10? Oh, and don’t think you can skirt the cost by getting a pre-built system, the cost of Windows is embedded into the cost of the machine (why else would Microsoft allow their OS to go on so many machines).
Sure, Windows 10 was a free upgrade for a year, but that’s only half of it’s lifetime— You can’t get it for free now, and not for the past year. On top of that, the free period was an upgrade; you had to pay for 7 or 8 first anyway.
Point is, as much as one would like to say that they didn’t need to buy a new system every so often for the sake of gaming, that doesn’t mean they haven’t been paying for hardware, and even if they’ve only been PC gaming recently, you’ll be spending money on hardware soon enough.

“PC is leading the VR—“

Let me stop you right there.
If you add together the total number of Oculus Rifts and HTC Vives sold to this day, and threw in another 100,000 just for the sake of it, that number would still be under the number of PSVR headsets sold.
Why could this possibly be? Well, for a simple reason: affordability. The systems needed to run the PC headsets costs $800+, and the headsets are $500 - $600, when discounted. PSVR on the other hand costs $450 for the full bundle (headset, camera, and move controllers, with a demo disc thrown in), and can be played on either a $250 - $300 console, or a $400 console, the latter recommended. Even if you want to say that the Vive and Rift are more refined, a full PSVR set, system and all, could cost just over $100 more than a Vive headset alone.
If anything, PC isn’t leading the VR gaming market, the PS4 is. It’s the system bringing VR to the most consumers, showing them what the future of gaming could look like. Not to mention that as the PlayStation line grows more powerful (4.2 TFLOP PS4 Pro, 10 TFLOP “PS5…”), it won’t be long until the PlayStation line can use the same VR games as PC.
Either way, this shows that there is a console equivalent to the PC VR options. Sure, there are some games you'd only be able to play on PC, but there are also some games you'd only be able to play on PSVR.
…Though to be fair, if we’re talking about VR in general, these headsets don’t even hold a candle to, surprisingly, Gear VR.

“If it wasn’t for consoles holding devs back, then they would be able to make higher quality games.”

This one is based on the idea that because of how “low spec” consoles are, that when a developer has to take them in mind, then they can’t design the game to be nearly as good as it would be otherwise. I mean, have you ever seen the minimum specs for games on Steam?
GTA V
  • CPU: Intel Core 2 Quad CPU Q6600 @ 2.40GHz (4 CPUs) / AMD Phenom 9850 Quad-Core Processor (4 CPUs) @ 2.5GHz
  • Memory: 4 GB RAM
  • GPU: NVIDIA 9800 GT 1GB / AMD HD 4870 1GB (DX 10, 10.1, 11)
Just Cause 3
  • CPU: Intel Core i5-2500k, 3.3GHz / AMD Phenom II X6 1075T 3GHz
  • Memory: 8 GB RAM
  • GPU: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 670 (2GB) / AMD Radeon HD 7870 (2GB)
Fallout 4
  • CPU: Intel Core i5-2300 2.8 GHz/AMD Phenom II X4 945 3.0 GHz or equivalent
  • Memory: 8 GB RAM
  • GPU: NVIDIA GTX 550 Ti 2GB/AMD Radeon HD 7870 2GB or equivalent
Overwatch
  • CPU: Intel Core i3 or AMD Phenom™ X3 8650
  • Memory: 4 GB RAM
  • GPU: NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 460, ATI Radeon™ HD 4850, or Intel® HD Graphics 4400
Witcher 3
  • Processor: Intel CPU Core i5-2500K 3.3GHz / AMD CPU Phenom II X4 940
  • Memory: 6 GB RAM
  • Graphics: Nvidia GPU GeForce GTX 660 / AMD GPU Radeon HD 7870
Actually, bump up all the memory requirements to 8 GBs, and those are some decent specs, relatively speaking. And keep in mind these are the minimum specs to even open the games. It’s almost as if the devs didn’t worry about console specs when making a PC version of the game, because this version of the game isn’t on console. Or maybe even that the consoles aren’t holding the games back that much because they’re not that weak. Just a hypothesis.
But I mean, the devs are still ooobviously having to take weak consoles into mind right? They could make their games sooo much more powerful if they were PC only, right? Right?
No. Not even close.
iRacing
  • CPU: Intel Core i3, i5, i7 or better or AMD Bulldozer or better
  • Memory: 8 GB RAM
  • GPU: NVidia GeForce 2xx series or better, 1GB+ dedicated video memory / AMD 5xxx series or better, 1GB+ dedicated video memory
Playerunknown’s Battlegrounds
  • CPU: Intel Core i3-4340 / AMD FX-6300
  • Memory: 6 GB RAM
  • GPU: nVidia GeForce GTX 660 2GB / AMD Radeon HD 7850 2GB
These are PC only games. That’s right, no consoles to hold them back, they don’t have to worry about whether an Xbox One could handle it. Yet, they don’t require anything more than the Multiplatform games.
Subnautica
  • CPU: Intel Haswell 2 cores / 4 threads @ 2.5Ghz or equivalent
  • Memory: 4GB
  • GPU: Intel HD 4600 or equivalent - This includes most GPUs scoring greater than 950pts in the 3DMark Fire Strike benchmark
Rust
  • CPU: 2 ghz
  • Memory: 8 GB RAM
  • DirectX: Version 11 (they don’t even list a GPU)
So what’s the deal? Theoretically, if developers don’t have to worry about console specs, then why aren’t they going all-out and making games that no console could even dream of supporting?
Low-end PCs.
What, did you think people only game on Steam if they spent at least $500 on gaming hardware? Not all PC gamers have gaming-PC specs, and if devs close their games out to players who don’t have the strongest of PCs, then they’d be losing out on a pretty sizable chunk of their potential buyers.
Saying “devs having to deal with consoles is holding gaming back” is like saying “racing teams having to deal with Ford is holding GT racing back.” A: racing teams don’t have to deal with Ford if they don’t want to, which is probably why many of them don’t, and B: even though Ford doesn’t make the fastest cars overall, they still manage to make cars that are awesome on their own, they don’t even need to be compared to anything else to know that they make good cars.
I want to go back to that previous point though, developers having to deal with low-end PCs, because it’s integral to the next point:

“PCs are more powerful, gaming on PC provides a better experience.”

This one isn’t so much of a misconception as it is… misleading.
Did you know that according to the Steam Hardware & Software Survey (July 2017) , the percentage of Steam gamers who use a GPU that's less powerful than that of a PS4 Slim’s GPU is well over 50%? Things get dismal when compared to the PS4 Pro (Or Xbox One X). On top of that, the percentage of PC gamers who own a Nvidia 10 series card is about 20% (about 15% for the 1060, 1080 and 1070 owners).
Now to be fair, the large majority of gamers have CPUs with considerably high clock speeds, which is the main factor in CPU gaming performance. But, the number of Steam gamers with as much RAM or more than a PS4 or Xbox One is less than 50%, which can really bottleneck what those CPUs can handle.
These numbers are hardly better than they were in 2013, all things considered. Sure, a PS3/360 weeps in the face of even a $400 PC, but in this day in age, consoles have definitely caught up.
Sure, we could mention the fact that even 1% of Steam accounts represents over 1 million accounts, but that doesn’t really matter compared to the 10s of millions of 8th gen consoles sold; looking at it that way, sure the number of Nvidia 10 series owners is over 20 million, but that ignores the fact that there are over 5 times more 8th gen consoles sold than that.
Basically, even though PCs run on a spectrum, saying they're more powerful “on average” is actually wrong. Sure, they have the potential for being more powerful, but most of the time, people aren’t willing to pay the premium to reach those extra bits of performance.
Now why is this important? What matters are the people who spent the premium cost for premium parts, right? Because of the previous point: PCs don’t have some ubiquitous quality over the consoles, developers will always have to keep low-end PCs in mind, because not even half of all PC players can afford the good stuff, and you have to look at the top quarter of Steam players before you get to PS4-Pro-level specs. If every Steam player were to get a PS4 Pro, it would be an upgrade for over 60% of them, and 70% of them would be getting an upgrade with the Xbox One X.
Sure, you could still make the argument that when you pay more for PC parts, you get a better experience than you could with a console. We can argue all day about budget PCs, but a console can’t match up to a $1,000 PC build. It’s the same as paying more for car parts, in the end you get a better car. However, there is a certain problem with that…

“You pay a little more for a PC, you get much more quality.”

The idea here is that the more you pay for PC parts, the performance increases at a faster rate than the price does. Problem: that’s not how technology works. Paying twice as much doesn’t get you twice the quality the majority of the time.
For example, let’s look at graphics cards, specifically the GeForce 10 series cards, starting with the GTX 1050.
  • 1.8 TFLOP
  • 1.35 GHz base clock
  • 2 GB VRAM
  • $110
This is our reference, our basis of comparison. Any percentages will be based on the 1050’s specs.
Now let’s look at the GTX 1050 Ti, the 1050’s older brother.
  • 2.1 TFLOP
  • 1.29 GHz base clock
  • 4 GB VRAM
  • $140 retail
This is pretty good. You only increase the price by about 27%, and you get an 11% increase in floating point speed and a 100% increase (double) in VRAM. Sure you get a slightly lower base clock, but the rest definitely makes up for it. In fact, according to GPU boss, the Ti managed 66 fps, or a 22% increase in frame rate for Battlefield 4, and a 54% increase in mHash/second in bitcoin mining. The cost increase is worth it, for the most part.
But let’s get to the real meat of it; what happens when we double our budget? Surely we should see a massive increase performance, I bet some of you are willing to bet that twice the cost means more than twice the performance.
The closest price comparison for double the cost is the GTX 1060 (3 GB), so let’s get a look at that.
  • 3.0 TFLOP
  • 1.5 GHz base clock
  • 3 GB VRAM
  • $200 retail
Well… not substantial, I’d say. About a 50% increase in floating point speed, an 11% increase in base clock speed, and a 1GB decrease in VRAM. For [almost] doubling the price, you don’t get much.
Well surely raw specs don’t tell the full story, right? Well, let’s look at some real wold comparisons. Once again, according to GPU Boss, there’s a 138% increase in hashes/second for bitcoin mining, and at 99 fps, an 83% frame rate increase in Battlefield 4. Well, then, raw specs does not tell the whole story!
Here’s another one, the 1060’s big brother… or, well, slightly-more-developed twin.
  • 3.9 TFLOP
  • 1.5 GHz base clock
  • 6 GB VRAM
  • $250 retail
Seems reasonable, another $50 for a decent jump in power and double the memory! But, as we’ve learned, we shouldn’t look at the specs for the full story.
I did do a GPU Boss comparison, but for the BF4 frame rate, I had to look at Tom’s Hardware (sorry miners, GPU boss didn’t cover the mHash/sec spec either). What’s the verdict? Well, pretty good, I’d say. With 97 FPS, a 79% increase over the 1050— wait. 97? That seems too low… I mean, the 3GB version got 99.
Well, let’s see what Tech Power Up has to say...
94.3 fps. 74% increase. Huh.
Alright alright, maybe that was just a dud. We can gloss over that I guess. Ok, one more, but let’s go for the big fish: the GTX 1080.
  • 9.0 TFLOP
  • 1.6 GHz base clock
  • 8 GB VRAM
  • $500 retail
That jump in floating point speed definitely has to be something, and 4 times the VRAM? Sure it’s 5 times the price, but as we saw, raw power doesn’t always tell the full story. GPU Boss returns to give us the run down, how do these cards compare in the real world?
Well… a 222% (over three-fold) increase in mHash speed, and a 218% increase in FPS for Battlefield 4. That’s right, for 5 times the cost, you get 3 times the performance. Truly, the raw specs don’t tell the full story.
You increase the cost by 27%, you increase frame rate in our example game by 22%. You increase the cost by 83%, you increase the frame rate by 83%. Sounds good, but if you increase the cost by 129%, and you get a 79% (-50% cost/power increase) increase in frame rate. You increase it by 358%, and you increase the frame rate by 218% (-140% cost/power increase). That’s not paying “more for much more power,” that’s a steep drop-off after the third cheapest option.
In fact, did you know that you have to get to the 1060 (6GB) before you could compare the GTX line to a PS4 Pro? Not to mention that at $250, the price of a 1060 (6GB) you could get an entire PS4 Slim bundle, or that you have to get to the 1070 before you beat the Xbox One X.
On another note, let’s look at a PS4 Slim…
  • 1.84 TFLOP
  • 800 MHz base clock
  • 8 GB VRAM
  • $300 retail
…Versus a PS4 Pro.
  • 4.2 TFLOP
  • 911 MHz base clock
  • 8 GB VRAM
  • $400 retail
128% increase in floating point speed, 13% increase in clock speed, for a 25% difference in cost. Unfortunately there is no Battlefield 4 comparison to make, but in BF1, the frame rate is doubled (30 fps to 60) and the textures are taken to 11. For what that looks like, I’ll leave it up to this bloke. Not to even mention that you can even get the texture buffs in 4K. Just like how you get a decent increase in performance based on price for the lower-cost GPUs, the same applies here.
It’s even worse when you look at the CPU for a gaming PC. The more money you spend, again, the less of a benefit you get per dollar. Hardware Unboxed covers this in a video comparing different levels of Intel CPUs. One thing to note is that the highest i7 option (6700K) in this video was almost always within 10 FPS (though for a few games, 15 FPS) of a certain CPU in that list for just about all of the games.
…That CPU was the lowest i3 (6100) option. The lowest i3 was $117 and the highest i7 was $339, a 189% price difference for what was, on average, a 30% or less difference in frame rate. Even the lowest Pentium option (G4400, $63) was often able to keep up with the i7.
The CPU and GPU are usually the most expensive and power-consuming parts of a build, which is why I focused on them (other than the fact that they’re the two most important parts of a gaming PC, outside of RAM). With both, this “pay more to get much more performance” idea is pretty much the inverse of the truth.

“The console giants are bad for game developers, Steam doesn't treat developers as bad as Microsoft or especially Sony.”

Now one thing you might’ve heard is that the PS3 was incredibly difficult for developers to make games for, which for some, fueled the idea that console hardware is difficult too develop on compared to PC… but this ignores a very basic idea that we’ve already touched on: if the devs don’t want to make the game compatible with a system, they don’t have to. In fact, this is why Left 4 Dead and other Valve games aren’t on PS3, because they didn’t want to work with it’s hardware, calling it “too complex.” This didn’t stop the game from selling well over 10 million units worldwide. If anything, this was a problem for the PS3, not the dev team.
This also ignores that games like LittleBigPlanet, Grand Theft Auto IV, and Metal Gear Solid 4 all came out in the same year as Left 4 Dead (2008) on PS3. Apparently, plenty of other dev teams didn’t have much of a problem with the PS3’s hardware, or at the very least, they got used to it soon enough.
On top of that, when developing the 8th gen consoles, both Sony and Microsoft sought to use CPUs that were easier for developers, which included making decisions that considered apps for the consoles’ usage for more than gaming. On top of that, using their single-chip proprietary CPUs is cheaper and more energy efficient than buying pre-made CPUs and boards, which is far better of a reason for using them than some conspiracy about Sony and MS trying to make devs' lives harder.
Now, console exclusives are apparently a point of contention: it’s often said that exclusive can cause developers to go bankrupt. However, exclusivity doesn’t have to be a bad thing for the developer. For example, when Media Molecule had to pitch their game to a publisher (Sony, coincidentally), they didn’t end up being tied into something detrimental to them.
Their initial funding lasted for 6 months. From then, Sony offered additional funding, in exchange for Console Exclusivity. This may sound concerning to some, but the game ended up going on to sell almost 6 million units worldwide and launched Media Molecule into the gaming limelight. Sony later bought the development studio, but 1: this was in 2010, two years after LittleBigPlanet’s release, and 2: Media Molecule seem pretty happy about it to this day. If anything, signing up with Sony was one of the best things they could’ve done, in their opinion.
Does this sound like a company that has it out for developers? There are plenty of examples that people will use to put Valve in a good light, but even Sony is comparatively good to developers.

“There are more PC gamers.”

The total number of active PC gamers on Steam has surpassed 120 million, which is impressive, especially considering that this number is double that of 2013’s figure (65 million). But the number of monthly active users on Xbox Live and PSN? About 120 million (1, 2) total. EDIT: You could argue that this isn't an apples-to-apples comparison, sure, so if you want to, say, compare the monthly number of Steam users to console? Steam has about half of what consoles do, at 67 million.
Now, back to the 65 million total user figure for Steam, the best I could find for reference for PlayStation's number was an article giving the number of registered PSN accounts in 2013, 150 million. In a similar 4-year period (2009 - 2013), the number of registered PSN accounts didn’t double, it sextupled, or increased by 6 fold. Considering how the PS4 is already at 2/3 of the number of sales the PS3 had, even though it’s currently 3 years younger than its predecessor, I’m sure this trend is at least generally consistent.
For example, let’s look at DOOM 2016, an awesome faced-paced shooting title with graphics galore… Of course, on a single platform, it sold best on PC/Steam. 2.36 million Steam sales, 2.05 million PS4 sales, 1.01 million Xbox One sales.
But keep in mind… when you add the consoles sales together, you get over 3 million sales on the 8th gen systems. Meaning: this game was best sold on console. In fact, the Steam sales have only recently surpassed the PS4 sales. By the way VG charts only shows sales for physical copies of the games, so the number of PS4 and Xbox sales, when digital sales are included, are even higher than 3 million.
This isn’t uncommon, by the way.
Even with the games were the PC sales are higher than either of the consoles, there generally are more console sales total. But, to be fair, this isn’t anything new. The number of PC gamers hasn’t dominated the market, the percentages have always been about this much. PC can end up being the largest single platform for games, but consoles usually sell more copies total.
EDIT: There were other examples but... Reddit has a 40,000-character limit.

"Modding is only on PC."

Xbox One is already working on it, and Bethesda is helping with that.
PS4 isn't far behind either. You could argue that these are what would be the beta stages of modding, but that just means modding on consoles will only grow.

What’s the Point?

This isn’t to say that there’s anything wrong with PC gaming, and this isn’t to exalt consoles. I’m not here to be the hipster defending the little guy, nor to be the one to try to put down someone/thing out of spite. This is about showing that PCs and consoles are overall pretty similar because there isn’t much dividing them, and that there isn’t anything wrong with being a console gamer. There isn’t some chasm separating consoles and PCs, at the end of the day they’re both computers that are (generally) designed for gaming. This about unity as gamers, to try to show that there shouldn’t be a massive divide just because of the computer system you game on. I want gamers to be in an environment where specs don't separate us; whether you got a $250 PS4 Slim or just built a $2,500 gaming PC, we’re here to game and should be able to have healthy interactions regardless of your platform.
I’m well aware that this isn’t going to fix… much, but this needs to be said: there isn’t a huge divide between the PC and consoles, they’re far more similar than people think. There are upsides and downsides that one has that the other doesn’t on both sides. There’s so much more I could touch on, like how you could use SSDs or 3.5 inch hard drives with both, or that even though PC part prices go down over time, so do consoles, but I just wanted to touch on the main points people try to use to needlessly separate the two kinds of systems (looking at you PCMR) and correct them, to get the point across.
I thank anyone who takes the time to read all of this, and especially anyone who doesn’t take what I say out of context. I also want to note that, again, this isn’tanti-PC gamer.” If it were up to me, everyone would be a hybrid gamer.
Cheers.
submitted by WhyyyCantWeBeFriends to unpopularopinion [link] [comments]

Bitcoin needs to progress, the Altavista syndrome is luring

To whom it may concern; please serve the Bitcoin users not ego's.
Bitcoin must not become the Altavista of crypto's. A short summary of how Altavista got smashed by Google: http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2421516,00.asp
Lots of (new) Bitcoin users are having bad experiences because of long transaction times, high fees, etc. Don't be naive; if Bitcoin does not progress soon, something else will take over. All parties should focus more on better user-experience, take action in reaching consensus and progress!
Peace
submitted by mr_moore to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

Of Wolves and Weasels - Day 33 - A Fun Way Forward

Hey all, GoodShibe here!
It started out simple enough. I'd first heard about Burger Bear here on the sub in this thread. It turned out that they were one of a few restaurants that seemed actively interested in accepting Dogecoin. It seemed like a really cool idea so I casually put forward an offer:
If anyone wanted a burger there, let me know and I'll buy them one.
And while that offer was still hanging in the air, I thought 'hey, why not do a solid for some hungry person in London?' So I hopped on twitter and sent 8K DOGE (the cost of a burger there) to @BurgerBearTom just to give to some random person.
As it turns out, my earlier offer had also been accepted, by elemesh. It was too late in the day to grab one, but I left the offer open, if he wanted one, just send me a PM anytime and we'd work it out.
Soelemesh did. At 6am EST the next day.
See, I'm not in London. I'm on a whole other continent.
And I'd just woken up. In fact, I was just starting to prep my Of Wolves and Weasels post for the day when I saw it - a casual PM about how I probably wasn't going to be awake anyway but if I was, he was going to be heading out for lunch in a couple of hours and figured he might as well head up that way. Well, since I was up, I shot back a PM... and that turned out into a whole flurry of PMs as he made his way there and got on site and such.
Again, I tipped the money to @BurgerBeartom via @tipdoge on Twitter. I thought it would just be a bit of a laugh, but the whole process - even though I'm a whole continent away - it turned out be an incredibly easy, really fun and, frankly, satisfying experience.
Needless to say, my laugh turned into a 'hmmm' after elemesh posted this thread.
And then felloutboy who'd also, apparently, stopped by there and had one, shared these:
http://imgur.com/a/HKbtp
And then he sent me this:
http://imgur.com/2TG7IUK
It was actually a really inspiring moment - so, thank you for that felloutboy!
I realized I still had a small chunk of change kicking around from moolah_'s and allthegoodunsaregone's massive tips/donations a while back. So I thought: I wonder if I put up for offer 10 free burgers at BurgerBear, paid for with Dogecoins, would there be any takers?
So I launched this thread.
And then realized, sadly, that by the time I'd had this little brainwave of mine, things were starting to close up proper over in the UK. Blarg.
Yesterday morning at 6am I got up extra early and put up this thread and cross-posted it to /London.
I wanted to know if it was possible, so I set aside 80,000 DOGE, had it ready to rip and went to see if anyone would take me up on the offer.
In the end, 7 out of the 10 burgers were claimed:
mitosan
shamess
imjustjoshing (and friends)
gargoylenz
Adjam
And it was a great deal of fun, coordinating with each of them as they made their way to BurgerBear - Adjam had trekked there from the other side of London to get his - and getting them all to the pub (@TheOldNunsHead) where - as it turns out - @BurgerBearTom was hosting his birthday bash.
It also turned out, as adjam later pointed out to me, to be Ðoge Day (02/08)!
In fact, if there's one theme to the whole day, it's that 'the timing ended up working out really well'.
Because there also ended up being a bit of a Dogecoin mini-meetup, as two groups actually got together and snapped this:
http://imgur.com/aJbVoyI
And This:
http://i.imgur.com/ELOBuBa.jpg
Inspired by how this was all playing out so well, I hopped on twitter and spread the news
Immediately, @Adult and @PeterOdeus chimed in on the conversation. Next thing I know, retweets and favorites are flying, lots of general cheer and merriment -- and then @Adult asked if they could kick in some Doge to help feed the locals.
Well, @BurgerBearTom posted his donation address
And then... yeah.
Donations
Donations everywhere
Which caught Tom a bit by surprise
Over 200K tipped!
Pics from what came next:
Mmmm!
Looks like
They had
Some fun!
And on his Birthday Bash, no less. I'm sure it was going to be a busy night... I like to think that maybe we helped push it over the top... a bit.
By the end of the night, outside of the 56k DOGE sent his way from the morning, he'd gotten another 250,000+ in random DOGE tips.
Tom seemed pleased
The funny thing about this is that I'd been wracking my skull trying to find ways to reach out - to get Dogecoin outside of this sub, how to make real connections with people.
It's food.
Good Food
Good food, great times, merriment - showing folks that this crazy, silly 'internet money' can turn into hot, delicious food -- or, as gargoylenz discovered, a tall frosty pint of beer -- before your very eyes.
Sharing in the merriment, creating memories together -- that's the next step. That's how we move Dogecoin forward - little by little. Winning hearts and minds as we go.
I now know what my next goal is and, I think you're all going to like it.
You see, I had a bit of a conversation with Tom - how he'd gotten into Bitcoin as sort of a marketing thing, to see if he couldn't drum up some more business. It worked, but he wasn't getting all that much. But DOGE... Doge had been, so far, a huge success. People were showing up and they were buying. And they were enthusiastic.
Now, if that doesn't describe my fellow Shibes, I don't know what will.
So, now that I'm all sorts of inspired by this whole thing, here's what I want to do:
I want to find more restaurants that will accept Dogecoin and give them our business.
I want restaurant owners to see that if they support us, we'll support them.
Get them to take a chance on us and have it pay off in a big way.
I don't have a TON of DOGE left, but here's what I'm going to do - we can think of this sort of like a DOGE FOOD faucet.
I've created /DogeFood
Right now, I have... 150,000 DOGE left.
If you can find a restaurant in your area that will let you pay in DOGE, I will buy you something to eat.
Much of this is going on the honor system - I'll try to vet everyone, but I'm trusting you all.
The rules are as follows:
  1. Set it up with me BEFORE you go. If you just show up with a bill and expect to have it paid, it will not happen.
  2. Put me in touch with the owner of said restaurant (website, twitter, etc).
  3. We'll put together a plan and make it happen.
  4. You must document the whole trip in photo and/or video and share it with the community.
  5. I'll pay the base check in DOGE, you pay the tip (in whatever currency you like).
  6. Not a 'rule' but: This sub will rely entirely on the generosity of the community. If you have a meal bought for you, thank the community and please pay it forward.
Sound fair?
I want to thank everyone involved in this whole crazy day, it seems like there've been some incredibly positive experiences made with Dogecoin, and I want to see more of them happen.
Let's use our DOGE to make some memories, fill some bellies and add just a touch more merriment and joy to the world.
It's 8:01AM EST and we're at 46.60% of DOGEs found. Our Global Hashrate is on a sharp rise from ~97 to ~100 Gigahashes per second and our Difficulty is spiking from ~1386 to ~1495.
Oh! Before I go I want to give a shout out to zimonitrome the winner of the Dogecoin Hype Video Contest - if you haven't yet seen it, it's a fantastic effort and 'Ð is for Dogecoin' definitely deserved the top spot. Check it out HERE
Also, in case you missed it, here's how Dogecoin is doing in the news:
Finally, if you're looking to spend some DOGEs, consider checking out:
As always, I appreciate your support!
GoodShibe
TL;DR: Bought some people on the other side of the world some free Burgers with Doge. It blew up into a big thing.
EDIT 2: That didn't take long! There's a donut drive on the go on Twitter for Strange Donuts right now! 40k raised already! Amazing!
EDIT: felloutboy just shared "I'll be back buying lunch there next week only this time I'll give him real cash. He's losing money on the dogecoin sales because he's saving up what he gets in doge and bitcoin to fund a local charitable project." -- can we maybe see about getting him some local news coverage? An article or something. Let's get him some good promotion to drive some cash sales as well! :D)
submitted by GoodShibe to dogecoin [link] [comments]

The solution to NANO's decentralisation: HTC Exodus, every phone is a node.

Couldn't stop thinking of Nano while reading this. Quotes from the article and HTC's site, links below.
Every Phone is A Node
Providing more nodes on the path to true decentralization. We want to double and triple the number of nodes of Ethereum and Bitcoin. - And Nano? -
The Exodus phone will launch with support for the Bitcoin, Lightning Network, Ethereum, and Dfinity networks, but more partnerships will be announced over the next few months to support the entire blockchain ecosystem. The goal, he said, is "to help underlying protocols expand their base of dedicated nodes."
The Exodus is a forthcoming Android smartphone project (release date TBD) that will feature a universal cryptocurrency wallet, a "secure hardware enclave," and support interoperability. The smartphone will work with multiple blockchain protocols, Chen said.
There is a lot of work ahead of us, but I believe the mobile hardware layer can contribute significantly to our new decentralized world."
Chen didn't give a price point for the HTC Exodus, but said HTC may accept cryptocurrency as a form of payment when it's available.
Read more:
https://www.pcmag.com/news/361208/htc-unveils-exodus-a-blockchain-powered-smartphone
https://www.htcexodus.com/
submitted by tifawinner to nanocurrency [link] [comments]

Episode 110: Crypto investments that died with a broker and the FBI's home genetics partner

Subscribe anywhere you get podcasts or, listen online here.

In this week's episode, Dan and Riley cover 5G development in Canada (with or without Huawei), how a dead CEO's air gap lost $190 million in investor bitcoin, a 14-year-old's bug bounty for finding the FaceTime bug, the penalties (and whether we think they're okay) for industrial espionage, more self-lacing shoes, the FBI's partnership with a home genetics company, Spotify's acquisition of Gimlet Media, Elon Musk's latest "for the good of the people" statement, and Peter Thiel's latest investment in "science media."

Speed round:
Episode Links
submitted by danbetcher to wreckedbytech [link] [comments]

Fallacy: The key to Bitcoin's decentralization is a small block size

One of the bigger selling points that Core has to keeping blocks small is in the name of decentralization. In this context, decentralization is that as many people as possible in the world should be able to run a full validating node that receive payments (processes transactions).
Let’s take a look at the bare minimum that an individual would need in order to run a full validating node on their own:
The per day costs above exclude any low cost living expenses (dwellings) as it just ranges too widely globally for an accurate estimate.
Let’s say for electricity, the cost range is $0.10-$0.30 cents per hour. With a median of $0.20 cents per hour, for 24 hours, that is a daily cost of $4.80.
For generic computer pricing in 2016, the prices range from $500 to $2000. On the very low end of $500, that is a cost average of $1.36 per day.
For a range of internet costs globally, it’s in excess of $100.00 per month down to around $3.00 per month. In the US, the average is $51.00 per month which falls around the middle of the high and low globally. Using this, it comes out to a daily cost of $1.70.
One of the side effects of keeping the block size small is that users are being introduced into an artificially created fee market. People currently are forced to compete for space on the blockchain when they shouldn’t have to (yet). Many proponents of small blocks say this is a good thing, and that block space is scarce and the higher fees should be welcomed.
At this time, the median fee is $0.12 - $0.15 cents per transaction. When there are transaction backlogs which happens more and more often now, the median fee jumps to $0.20 - $0.25 and higher per transaction with even longer confirmation wait times.
With all of that said, we are looking at a total cost per day for an individual to run a full validating node that processes transactions of $7.86 plus the cost of transactions ($0.12 - $0.15 cents per transaction).
If an individual processes let’s say on the low end of one transaction per month, for 12 months that is $1.44.
At bare minimum, total costs annually is $2,870.34 for one person to run a full validating node. ($7.86 per day * 365 days + $1.44).
If you look at the per capita income across the world, you will see that the cost of running a full validating node quickly reduces the number of people that can afford to do this.
Using data provided Gallup metrics across 131 countries in the world, the median per capita household income is $2,920 annually.
There are 81 countries that fall below the total amount needed annually to run a full validating node (see the red line in the image). There are 51 countries that are able to run a full validating node. Please remember that in this study, we did not include the cost of living (dwellings), meaning that there are probably even more countries of people that cannot afford to run a full validating node.
It’s quite possible that only the top twenty developed countries can actually afford to run a full validating node.
What’s the point of all this?
The point is that if decentralization is key, then 1MB is already too much. People in developing countries are already priced out of Bitcoin on a per transaction basis where the $0.12 cents per transaction is unaffordable even on a basic human level where people will choose to eat over processing a Bitcoin transaction.
Once you factor in the costs of running full validating nodes, all of a sudden only first world developed countries can afford to run them. People that can afford to run them will run them to support the network, it won’t be people below the poverty line.
This means that the 1MB limit in order to keep Bitcoin decentralized is a fallacy that is quite easily debunked.
Satoshi already foresaw this dilemma a long time ago when he said:
The current system where every user is a network node is not the intended configuration for large scale. That would be like every Usenet user runs their own NNTP server. The design supports letting users just be users. The more burden it is to run a node, the fewer nodes there will be. Those few nodes will be big server farms. The rest will be client nodes that only do transactions and don't generate.
He already knew back in 2010 that in the future, it wouldn't be every individual in the world running nodes, but would be farms who can afford to run them that would do it.
Satoshi (Bitcoin's Creator) also suggested that we use SPV to "allow common users to do transactions without being full blown nodes."
I believe it's time we do away with the illogical fallacy that in order to keep Bitcoin decentralized that the block size should remain at 1MB. Even with Segregated Witness we are well exceeding 1MB. This argument is dead in the water in my opinion.
It's time to let the free market decide on the block size and let those that can afford to run full nodes, run them.
submitted by Gobitcoin to btc [link] [comments]

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