Mostrando entradas con la etiqueta Bitcoin. Mostrar todas las entradas
Mostrando entradas con la etiqueta Bitcoin. Mostrar todas las entradas

martes, marzo 31, 2015

Bitcoin for the Cuban Tourism Sector - CoinReport

Recently I wrote about the great potential for Bitcoin in Cuba. I concluded, however, due to lack of access to the internet the cryptocurrency is nearly non-existent., a German vacation booking company, is trying to change this. Users can now make payments for casas particulares, the Cuban versions of a “bed & breakfast,” with Bitcoin. Unfortunately, Bitcoin can only be used to cover the 20-30% down payment for the reservation – the rest must be paid using fiat currency (Cuban Convertible Pesos) directly to the casa hosts. I spoke with Richard Urban, a reservation agent with, and he told me, “We get very few reservations paid with Bitcoin;” however, there are “no technical issues, no complaints by either side.” To date, Bitcoin-paid reservations have come from Germany, Canada, Switzerland, Poland, and Russia. Most likely, converts the Bitcoin directly to a national fiat currency upon receipt, using the currency purely for transactional purposes. However, I didn’t receive a response to confirm or deny this.
Recently, the Cuban state telecom agency, ETECSA, approved the country’s first wireless hub located at a cultural center in Havana. The hub is operated by Cuban sculptor Kcho, who is using his own, government-approved connection to broadcast WiFi. This may be a small but potentially significant step toward greater internet availability on the island.
Cuba is a cash economy. Debit and credit cards are scarce. Historically, Cuban merchants have been barred from processing American cards until a recent policy change by the United States Treasury reversed this. US Dollar conversions to Cuban Convertible Pesos incur a 10% transactional tax by the Cuban government. The country is still heavily reliant on foreign remittances, around $2.6 billion in 2012, and another $2.5 billion of “in kind” remittances (products brought or sent directly to Cubans by relatives or friends). This remittance inflow is unlikely to change.
What is unique about the Cuban situation is the absence of a legacy banking system. Since most banks are seen by the people as corrupt and untrustworthy most transactions and savings are in cash (sometimes stuffed under a mattress). When Cuba becomes connected to the global internet, technology like Bitcoin will allow the country to “leap frog” over the current remittance services in favor of more egalitarian ways to send and receive money. For this to work, however, there would need to be a developed peer to peer network of people willing to transact between Bitcoin (or any cryptocurrency) and CUC on the island. This decentralized approach of having individuals create the remittance market would be superior to having a central entity process the transactions. This is because a central entity would be much more likely to capitulate to government regulation or corruption.

lunes, febrero 16, 2015

Donaciones en Bitcoin al Club Anarcocapitalista de Cuba

La organización ha preparado una imagen para anunciar la noticia. (CAC)
El día de ayer se hizo oficial la posibilidad de enviar donaciones mediante Bitcoins a la causa del Club Anarcocapitalista de Cuba (CAC), el cual se ha dedicado a la defensa de la libertad y a la propagación de ideas radicales de la filosofía política anarcocapitalista en la isla caribeña.
El CAC tiene como objetivo dar a los cubanos una nueva perspectiva de pensamiento, en medio del totalitarismo y la anulación a la libertad de expresión ejercidos por el régimen de los hermanos Castro.
La organización, aliada en Cuba del Instituto Mises, logra expresar sus ideas a través de bibliotecas independientes en el país y preparando conferencias ligadas al anarquismo del libre mercado.
Código QR para donaciones (CAC)
La asociación pudo, con la ayuda de partidarios en el extranjero, implementar una cuenta en bitcoin para poder financiarse mediante donaciones, debido a que por represalias políticas la mayoría de los miembros del CAC no pueden acceder a un empleo.
Joisy García, uno de los fundadores de la organización, comentó a Panam Post que están haciendo historia al ser la primera organización que acepta bitcoins en Cuba. García fue enfático en que no podían hacer públicos sus planes acerca del método de cambio de bitcoins a pesos cubanos.
Este jueves lograron realizar con éxito una prueba, consiguiendo así, la primera donación. La ayuda al Club se puede dar a través de cualquier cuenta bitcoin al código que la organización ha puesto a disposición: 19AfRwtrebmR4kSy1wwpRHY7Smj9rmKkYF
Originalmente publicado en PanamPost en español.

jueves, diciembre 26, 2013

Feds stole my $33M bitcoins booty: Silk Road ‘pirate’

The Internet “pirate” accused of running the notorious illegal-drug-peddling Web site Silk Road claims that the feds are the real buccaneers — robbing him to the tune of $33.6 million worth of the encrypted, virtual currency bitcoin.
Ross Ulbricht — who was arrested in October for allegedly masterminding the mysterious “deep Web” site — recently filed legal papers in Manhattan federal court admitting he “has an interest as owner” of the more than 173,000 bitcoins the government seized through forfeiture from Silk Road.
Valued at $33.6 million, these bitcoins are assets the government claims were used to facilitate money laundering in support of a host of crimes, including six failed murder-for-hire plots and the sale of cocaine, heroin and other illicit drugs over the Internet.
Ulbricht — who allegedly used the workplace alias “Dread Pirate Roberts,” a reference to a character in the 1987 cult film “The Princess Bride” — said in a notarized Dec. 11 statement that he believes the virtual currency should be returned to him because bitcoins are “not subject to seizure” by federal law.
Ulbricht, 29, now admits the bitcoin fortune is his — even though he’s previously denied any wrongdoing regarding Silk Road and claimed through his lawyer that the feds arrested the wrong guy.
Ulbricht’s attempt at forcing the government to return the bitcoins marks the first time the courts have been asked to determine whether the controversial virtual currency is an asset that falls under forfeiture laws, legal experts told The Post.
Daniel Wenner, a white-collar lawyer and former Brooklyn assistant US attorney, called Ulbricht’s argument “very creative and cutting edge,” but said he’d be “stunned” if a judge sided with the alleged Silk Road operator.
“I think one would be hard-pressed to convince a court that something you can use to purchase goods, like bitcoins, isn’t property,” he said.
Attorney Jeffrey Alberts, who used to specialize in asset-forfeiture actions as a federal prosecutor for Manhattan US Attorney Preet Bharara, agreed. He said Ulbricht should have “a difficult time” proving his argument because typically “anything of value” can be seized in money-laundering cases.
“Artwork, horses and even intellectual property, such as domain names, have qualified, so there’s no reason to think bitcoins wouldn’t,” he said.
Both Bharara, whose office is handling the Silk Road case, and Ulbricht’s lawyer, Joshua Dratel, declined comment.
Bharara’s asset seizure from Silk Road was the largest-ever by the feds that involved bitcoins.

domingo, diciembre 08, 2013

China derrumba al Bitcoin

Imagen de
China prohibió hace unos días el uso de Bitcoins por instituciones financieras, algo que afectó bastante a la moneda, ya que ahora Baidu (el “Google chino”) y China Telecom han dejado de aceptar bitcoins, derrumbando su valor y dejándolo a poco más de 700 dólares la unidad.
Baidu anunció esta semana que ya no aceptaría la moneda digital como forma de pago, lo hizo como respuesta al Banco de China, informando que las últimas grandes fluctuaciones en el valor de Bitcoin hace difícil salvaguardar los intereses de los usuarios.
Después de haber alcanzado los 1000 dólares por bitcoin a finales de noviembre (llegó a 1200 dólares en algunos momentos), parecía que no había freno para esta fiebre. Ni las noticias sobre los robos de bitcoins en ciertos sitios especializados en compra y venta de la moneda, ni la falta de garantía de muchos de ellos parecía afectar a los que siguen invirtiendo en la moneda de 2013, año en el que ha obtenido más atención en la web (el bitcoin fue creado en 2009).
Está claro que China es un mercado suficientemente potente como para afectar a todas las monedas del mundo, incluidas las “virtuales”; es allí donde se encuentran algunas de las mayores infraestructuras que minan Bitcoins, gigantescos ordenadores conectados entre ellos con el único objetivo de crear “monedas”. El Bitcoin es algo más que una moda, y es necesario que se entienda de esa forma para que pueda seguir sobreviviendo de forma independiente.

martes, diciembre 03, 2013

Bitcoin y culos: La singularidad tecnológica está cerca

Si en Internet se habla más de bitcoin que de los culos es que la singularidad se acerca.
Las recomendaciones son (a) correr hacia las colinas; (b) invertir todo el dinero que tengas en bitcoin o (c) abandonar el «patrón culo».
(Vía I Love Charts.)

miércoles, octubre 30, 2013

World’s first palm scan-activated bitcoin ATM to open in Canada
The world’s first bitcoin ATM will open in Vancouver, Canada, next week – dispensing Canadian dollars in exchange for the anonymous crypto-currency. But only if your palm scan matches the ATM’s records, that is.
The machine will be set up near downtown Vancouver coffee house Waves, is one of five ATMs bought by Canadian firm Bitcoiniacs from Nevada-based producer Robocoin.
The machine will exchange bitcoins for Canadian dollars via Canada’s VirtEx exchange. The transactions themselves will be anonymous, the vendor says, but clients will have to identify themselves via a palm scanner first.
This is done to enforce Canadian anti-money laundering laws, due to which the ATM will only allow transactions of up to 3,000 Canadian dollars (around $2,700) per day per customer.
The four other ATMs will be rolled out in Canadian cities such as Toronto, Montreal, Calgary or Ottawa in December, the company says.
“Basically, it just makes it easier for people to buy and sell bitcoins,” Mitchell Demeter, founder of Bitcoiniacs and co-owner of Robocoin, told CBC.
Bitcoin is an internet-based currency designed to exist without any centralized regulatory authority. New Bitcoins are generated by spending computer processing time to conduct complex calculations, and the process is limited by a maximum of about 21 million bitcoins that can exist.
The currency has long been a fad among online privacy activists, financial futurists and shady dealers, but is so far little known to the general public. It lately hit the headlines after the FBI bust of the Silk Road website that US authorities say facilitated the trade in illegal goods and services, from drugs to assassinations.

miércoles, mayo 01, 2013

Bitcoin: Crypto Currency - Forbes

Want to buy socks or psilocybin without being traced? Bitcoins are for you.


Gavin Andresen, a Bitcoin developer, shows what he thinks about state-backed currency.

The Internet has left plenty of dead and maimed paper-based institutions in its wake. If Gavin Andresen and his underground cadre of cypherpunks have their way, another archaic slice of pulped tree may be next: the dollar.
Bitcoin is a grassroots nonprofit project that seeks to fashion a new currency out of little more than cryptography, networking and open-source software, and Andresen is the closest thing the project has to a director. Bitcoin is not, he explains, just a new way to digitally spend dollars, pounds and yen. That's been tried before. Remember Beenz and Flooz?
Bitcoin is different: It wholly replaces state-backed currencies with a digital version that's tougher to forge, cuts across international boundaries, can be stored on your hard drive instead of in a bank, and--perhaps most importantly to many of Bitcoin's users--isn't subject to the inflationary whim of whatever Federal Reserve chief decides to print more money.
"Bitcoin is designed to bring us back to a decentralized currency of the people," says Andresen, a 44-year-old software developer and entrepreneur based in Amherst, Mass. "This is like better gold than gold."
As with shiny-metal-backed currencies, Bitcoins derive their value partly through their scarcity, which is defined not by how much can be dug up with shovels but by a cryptographic lottery. Anyone can get Bitcoins without paying cash for them by downloading and running Bitcoin's "mining" program. The machines in Bitcoin's mining network, now in the thousands, compute an encryption function called a "hash" on a set of random numbers, and coins are awarded every ten minutes to whichever miner happens to compute a number below a certain threshold.
That lottery tightly controls how many Bitcoins are created. There are currently close to 6 million in existence. By 2014 there will be about twice that number. Bitcoin's distributed software is set to slow production over time so that there will never be more than 21 million in circulation. "No banker can control it. No evil dictator tyrant can print zillions and destroy the value," says Bruce Wagner, organizer of New York's Bitcoin developer's meet-up.
Of course, the other factor that determines the worth of a currency is whether anyone will accept it in exchange for goods and services. And for Bitcoin, a subculture of geek-friendly merchants is catching on. About $30,000 worth of Bitcoins change hands every day in electronic transactions, spent on Web-hosting, electronics, dog sweaters and alpaca socks.
Also drugs. Particularly illegal ones. Since Bitcoins can be spent on the Internet without the use of a bank account, they offer a convenient system for anonymous purchases. There's no centralized storage of funds, so accounts can't be frozen by law enforcement or PayPal administrators. "Illegal stuff will be a niche for Bitcoin," admits Andresen. "That bothers me, but it's just like any currency. You can't stop dollar bills from being used for the drug trade either. That's an unfortunate feature of any cashlike system."
Bitcoins' anonymity was no accident. The system was originally designed by Satoshi Nakamoto, a mysterious, privacy-obsessed figure who first described the currency's specs in a series of posts on a cryptography e-mail list in late 2008. Nakamoto declined to be interviewed for this story, and not even Andresen, who took over the project as technical lead in May 2010, has communicated with Bitcoin's founder except through e-mail and posts on Web forums. Nakamoto has compared Bitcoin to the systems of anonymous financial transactions sought by the anarchist cypherpunk movement in the 1990s, whose adherents saw cryptography as a way to shift power from institutions to individuals.
Thanks in part to its growing uses, both black- and white-market, the newborn currency is appreciating at a wild clip. In just the year since Andresen joined the project, it's jumped from half a penny in value to about a dollar.
That possibly irrational exuberance may be a sign that Bitcoin is headed for a speculative bubble. The currency already swings as much as 50% in value over some single days. But Bitcoin's supporters are confident the free market can solve that problem as Bitcoin's advantages attract more nonspeculative buying and selling.
One way they hope to bring more normals into the fold: by expanding Bitcoin's applications to the real world. Bitcoin devotees in New York's informal developer group are rolling out an Android app for mobile Bitcoin buying. They're also building open-source software that can be integrated into point-of-sale terminals.
"Someday this will probably have the Fed scrambling," says the New York meet-up's Bruce Wagner. "They still don't know what Twitter is. By the time they figure this out, it will have already taken hold."

The Flaw that May Bring Down Bitcoin or Change it Forever
Bitcoin is currently being used as a publishing system due to a design feature/flaw.   That flaw threatens the viability of Bitcoin as a currency.
How so?
Some folks have expoited that feature/flaw to publish Wikileaks cables and pedophile porn links in bitcoin's blockchain.
Of course, that's a problem.  It may attact some aggressive behavior from governments, well before it reaches a maturation.
However, that's a problem.  Since bitcoin is decentralized, the steps required  to prevent people from publishing information.
This now becomes the multi-billion $$ question:  can Bitcoin fix itself or will it end up becoming an illegal backwater?
To find out how it's done and what can actually be done about it, I contacted Jeff Garzik on the Bitcoin software team (it's a little technical, but you can follow the logic):
Sending bitcoins requires two pieces of data: a bitcoin address, and an amount (number of bitcoins). There is no "comments field" or anything of that nature. A bitcoin address is just a random 20-byte piece of data. Normally those 20 bytes are derived from the RIPEMD160 and SHA256 algorithms, but a valid 20 bytes cannot be distinguished from an invalid 20 bytes. Therefore, if you are willing to waste money -- albeit very small fractions like 0.00000001 bitcoins -- by sending that money to invalid bitcoin addresses, you essentially have created a channel for random data transmission. The bitcoin blockchain is in one sense a massively replicated ~7GB database that stores data for all eternity.
There remains the open question of what happens if somebody dumps data into the blockchain, that a government finds illegal. Smart people argue the legal theory "mens rea" and similar mitigating factors are applicable. But it remains an unknown. The vast majority of people are burdened with this awful data they don't care about, simply to use the bitcoin payment system they do care about. There are many conflicting motives and incentives (very Brave New War-ish):
  • Anarchist activists want to publish this information, to force authorities to act (or not) when this illegal data is published. *
  • Bitcoin activists want to publish this information, to force developers (us) to address The Filter Issue
  • Some people see more value in bitcoin as "eternity data storage", if expensive and inefficient, than bitcoin as a currency
It is, quite literally, impossible to prevent use of bitcoin as data storage. It is a purely digital currency. Who can say which digits are "evil" or "good", allowed or disallowed? You can detect certain patterns, and possibly filter those
Many bitcoin users are using bitcoin for its intended purpose, as currency transfer, and dislike carrying the costs for these other uses.  As this carrying-data issue rears its head, it increases the costs for anyone running a P2P node on the all-volunteer bitcoin P2P network. This shrinks the total number of bitcoin P2P nodes.  As such, due to both legal and resource-usage issues, "data spam" has long been theorized as an attack vector.  
The "Filter Issue": There are very large ramifications to filtering out transactions, even ones that are obviously data spam. Fungability: currently, all bitcoins have the same value.  My 1.0 BTC and your 1.0 BTC are equivalent in value. Once you start filtering transactions, you are injecting policy-based censorship into the mix. Some bitcoins are accepted by all, some bitcoins are only accepted by a few. A value of a bitcoin itself becomes a product of its ancestry.
If this policy is implemented, perhaps by court order to a bitcoin mining pool, it could lead chain forks, where i.e. bitcoin users in the United States see a different set of spendable bitcoins than users outside the US. It is widely speculated, based on common forum comments in the crypto-anarchist community, that this current round of data spam is intended to force bitcoin users, developers and governments of the world to take action to censor -- or not -- certain bitcoin transactions. Trying to force the issue, to establish a precedent one way or the other. Or, more pessimistically, a party could be simply trying to shut down bitcoin.
The bitcoin community is very staunchly anti-censorship, but if data spam were to threaten the life of bitcoin, I imagine ideology-neutral "it looks like data, not currency" filtering would appear. Bitcoin is ultimately a product of voting -- you vote by choosing which software version and software ruleset to download. The users can always vote data spam off the island... but will they? :) Is data transmission a valid use of bitcoin? The users themselves choose the definition of "valid."

sábado, abril 27, 2013

Bitcoin’s real-world problem: Virtual currency facing bank backlash in Canada

Joseph David has overcome a lot of challenges since starting up Canada’s first Bitcoin exchange two years ago but his latest hurdle is proving tougher that all the others.

Terence Corcoran: Gold versus bitcoin

Over the last few days two of the pretenders to the world currency throne — bitcoin, the new high-profile digital currency, and gold, the centuries-old commodity currency — have fallen into a tailspin.
Virtex, based in Calgary, is an online market that matches Bitcoin buyers with sellers, with about $13-million of trades under its belt.
But earlier this month Royal Bank of Canada quietly informed Mr. David that it would no longer do business with his company.
“They shut down our account without any reason,” said Mr. David, an ebullient entrepreneur with a background in technology companies. “They just said we have the right to refuse service to whomever we wish.”
For whatever reason, many in Canada’s small but fast growing Bitcoin community are suddenly dealing with the same problem: The banks have decided they don’t like the cryptocurrency and they’re shutting down some of the accounts of businesses that deal in it.
They shut down our account without any reason
That the closing of conventional bank accounts could be a problem may sound counter-intuitive, since Bitcoin is supposed to be an alternative currency designed to operate outside of the conventional banking system. But in practice Bitcoin holders are constantly swapping back and forth into real dollars — partly because of volatile nature of the currency, which soared as high as $260 for a single Bitcoin after trading for years at less than $10, and partly because there’s not that much you can buy with it.
As a result, this latest move by the banks has thrown a monkey wrench into the nascent system.
“Only in Canada do you get a situation where a bank can shut down your account and you’re out of business,” said Melvin Ng, an engineering student at the University of Waterloo and the founder of what is likely the country’s newest bitcoin exchange, Cadbitcoin.
“Banks should certainly feel threatened by this new virtual currency, as Bitcoins will soon replace the need for banks to transfer money across borders,” Mr. Ng declared in a press release. “Bitcoin will revolutionize the banking industry, just like Bittorrent changed the video and music industry,” said Mr. Ng, comparing the currency to the super-fast and legally problematic peer-to-peer media downloading service.
A spokeswoman for RBC declined to comment on the matter, saying that the bank does not comment on individual clients.
Meanwhile the Canadian Bankers Association said it has no position since Bitcoin “is essentially an electronic currency that operates outside of the traditional national currency system.”
The Bank of Canada also has yet to take an official position, said Dale Alexander, a spokesman for the central bank. But in an emailed statement he went on to quote the Currency Act which defines legal tender as any bills or coins issued under the auspices of the Bank of Canada or the Royal Canadian Mint. The note also included a link to a European Central Bank study warning that virtual currencies such as Bitcoin are “inherently unstable,” “not regulated or closely supervised,” and “could have a negative impact on the reputation of central banks.”
As critics point out the currency has been extraordinarily volatile, with the value of a single Bitcoin ranging from less than $1 back in 2008 when it was first created to as much as $260 earlier this month. There have been several major corrections but each time it has recovered. That’s because enthusiasts refused to give up on the market, and the faithful will likely rush to buttress their virtual tender again if there’s another correction.
Bitcoin has no shortage of proponents.
“Bitcoin and similar electronic currencies have great advantages,” said Finn Poschmann, vice president of research at the C.D. Howe Institute. “First is that they are electronic — they can be easily exchanged, at low cost. Moreover, they can be exchanged among people and between people and businesses without the infrastructure associated with debit and credit cards, or wire transfers.”
Such currencies also come with “potentially great risks,” Mr. Poshmann cautions, adding that it is the job of regulators and monetary authorities to address those risks.
George Frey/Bloomberg
George Frey/Bloomberg
As critics point out the currency has been extraordinarily volatile, with the value of a single Bitcoin ranging from less than $1 back in 2008 when it was first created to as much as $260 earlier this month.
Bitcoin is only the latest in a string of virtual currencies, from the Linden Dollars used in the on-line game Second Life, to mobile phone air time units used as money by a large part of the population in Kenya and Tanzania.
The brainchild of a possibly fictitious Japanese software engineer, Bitcoin first emerged in 2009, just as the global financial system was being pushed to the brink. Unlike conventional money, it’s not controlled by any central bank or any other central authority and it exists only electronically. Instead it’s controlled by peer-to-peer software, like Bittorrent and other media file-sharing systems.
The whole thing is run by powerful computer systems owned by people called “miners.” They keep the ledgers, recording every transaction that takes place and as a reward, they get periodic payments of Bitcoin.
One of the big advantages is that it’s resistant to the kind of tampering that happened in the aftermath of the financial crisis that saw central banks pumping out huge quantities of new money as a way to revive ailing banks. Critics charge that such moves will ultimately result in inflation, devaluing the holdings of countless individual savers.
Another advantage is that the cost of doing transactions is a lot less than, say, with a credit card where the issuer charges around 3% each time the card is swiped. Such fees are the lifeblood of the banking system but they are significantly reduced because Bitcoin purchases don’t require a middleman.
To get Bitcoin you need to go to an exchange like Mr. David’s Virtex, or maybe you will opt for Mt. Gox, the world’s biggest Bitcoin exchange. There you can use Canadian dollars to buy Bitcoin which is sent electronically and stored on your laptop hard drive.
And over the past few months, a lot of people have been doing that, rapidly driving up the value of Bitcoin. But as a true currency it’s got a ways to go as there’s not a lot of retailers that accept it, at least not yet.
But the supporters are a determined lot, and the lack of stuff to buy doesn’t appear to be a problem. Most appear happy to sit on their hoards until the value goes up and then swap back into dollars to lock in their gains. Owing to white-knuckle volatility, that strategy hasn’t worked for everyone but clearly some are doing very well by it.
Paul Chavady, a real estate agent in Saskatoon, said he began offering services in Bitcoin after getting calls from potential customers who want to buy some bricks and mortar for their virtual spoils.
Tomohiro Ohsumi/BloombergCritics say the rise of bitcoin is also being helped by secrecy.
“We were getting all these inquiries from people who made a lot of money in bitcoin and they were enquiring about buying a house,” said Mr. Chavady. “It’s something that’s picking up. “
So far support for Bitcoin has come from a small community of tech-savvy evangelists and hipsters, but it’s rapidly growing thanks to the sharp rise in value.
Mike Caldwell, a 35-year-old software developer from Utah, is part of the unusual breed of Bitcoin entrepreneurs.
Mr. Caldwell manufactures physical Bitcoins, churning out thousands of the gold-coloured tokens which he claims cannot be counterfeited due to his tamper-proof holographic technology. The notion of a physical manifestation of a virtual currency may seem a bit odd, but he claims demand is so high that he’s created 17,000 coins since launching the business a year and a half ago and he’s only taking on new customers by invitation.
Critics say the rise of Bitcoin is also being helped by secrecy. The fact that transactions are anonymous makes Bitcoin the perfect system for drug dealers and other criminals, they say. Indeed, that’s become one of the major arguments against the currency.
James Grant, owner of the Ottawa-based Bitcoin brokerage Canadian Bitcoins, scoffs at that. Transactions with physical cash are just as anonymous, he argues.
He too has had his bank account shut down and he’s furious about it. The bank “didn’t give us a reason, but I could see them being worried about money laundering. If they had asked, we have invoices and receipts [for all our transactions]. We could have given them all those things… I believe in Bitcoin for the long term.”

domingo, abril 14, 2013

Bitcoin, más madera

Un interesante punto de vista sobre Bitcoin en GurusBlog, bastante bien explicado: Guru Huky su Opinión sobre Bitcoin (¡gracias Furilo por la pista).
Bitcoin es un sistema de pagos peer to peer que permite a cualquiera pagar a quién sea por internet sin necesitar la intermediación de ningún tipo de intermediario o institución financiera (…) Bitcoin es peligroso porque es el sistema de pagos más disruptivo que hay en escena… olvídate de chorradas como iZettle, Square o Stripe. Para mi estas no son realmente disruptivas: en el fondo ninguna de ellas abandona el circuito bancario y acaban en un momento u otro tocando un banco… Bitcoin es la disrupción en mayúsculas de los sistemas de pago. Con Bitcoin no necesitas ni a Square, ni a Stripe, ni a Visa ni a PayPal, ni a Barclays, ni a Caixabank para realizar un pago.
Eso sí, esto no es un mundo perfecto y todo lo relacionado con las Bitcoin se enfrenta a algunos problemas muy difíciles de resolver:
La debilidad de Bitcoin no está en su concepto de sistema de pago, sino en su concepto de moneda (…) Es su talón de Aquiles básicamente por dos motivos: (1) Al ser concebido por sus autores como una moneda refugio de la política monetaria expansiva de los bancos centrales, el éxito de Bitcoin parece que lo ha convertido de moneda o sistema de pago a un vehículo de especulación financiera (…) (2) ¿Es realmente Bitcoin válido como moneda? ¿Es realmente válida una moneda con un número finito de unidades tan «reducido» y pre establecido de sólo 21 millones?
En resumen: tienes una idea que suena muy bien pero en la práctica se utiliza principalmente para especular; su cambio a «dinero real» fluctúa hasta un 50, 75 o 100 por cien de un día para otro, arriba o abajo (!) La gente no se fía, entre los expertos oyes opiniones dispares y los bancos y otras entidades del mundo real la ven con recelo. ¡Complicados comienzos!
En otras noticias, Bitcoin ha continuado desplomándose hasta los 100 dólares por Bitcoin desde los máximos de 237 de hace unos días.
Más enlaces al respecto:
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Retratos de fusilados por el Castrismo - Juan Abreu


"EN TIEMPOS DIFÍCILES" - Heberto Padilla

A aquel hombre le pidieron su tiempo

para que lo juntara al tiempo de la Historia.

Le pidieron las manos,

porque para una época difícil

nada hay mejor que un par de buenas manos.

Le pidieron los ojos

que alguna vez tuvieron lágrimas

para que contemplara el lado claro

(especialmente el lado claro de la vida)

porque para el horror basta un ojo de asombro.

Le pidieron sus labios

resecos y cuarteados para afirmar,

para erigir, con cada afirmación, un sueño


le pidieron las piernas

duras y nudosas

(sus viejas piernas andariegas),

porque en tiempos difíciles

¿algo hay mejor que un par de piernas

para la construcción o la trinchera?

Le pidieron el bosque que lo nutrió de niño,

con su árbol obediente.

Le pidieron el pecho, el corazón, los hombros.

Le dijeron

que eso era estrictamente necesario.

Le explicaron después

que toda esta donación resultaria inútil.

sin entregar la lengua,

porque en tiempos difíciles

nada es tan útil para atajar el odio o la mentira.

Y finalmente le rogaron

que, por favor, echase a andar,

porque en tiempos difíciles

esta es, sin duda, la prueba decisiva.


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La columna de Cubanalisis

NEOCASTRISMO [Hacer click en la imagen]

NEOCASTRISMO [Hacer click en la imagen]
¨Saturno jugando con sus hijos¨/ Pedro Pablo Oliva


Carta desde la carcel de Fidel Castro Ruz

“…después de todo, para mí la cárcel es un buen descanso, que sólo tiene de malo el que es obligatorio. Leo mucho y estudio mucho. Parece increíble, las horas pasan como si fuesen minutos y yo, que soy de temperamento intranquilo, me paso el día leyendo, apenas sin moverme para nada. La correspondencia llega normalmente…”

“…Como soy cocinero, de vez en cuando me entretengo preparando algún pisto. Hace poco me mandó mi hermana desde Oriente un pequeño jamón y preparé un bisté con jalea de guayaba. También preparo spaghettis de vez en cuando, de distintas formas, inventadas todas por mí; o bien tortilla de queso. ¡Ah! ¡Qué bien me quedan! por supuesto, que el repertorio no se queda ahí. Cuelo también café que me queda muy sabroso”.
“…En cuanto a fumar, en estos días pasados he estado rico: una caja de tabacos H. Upman del doctor Miró Cardona, dos cajas muy buenas de mi hermano Ramón….”.
“Me voy a cenar: spaghettis con calamares, bombones italianos de postre, café acabadito de colar y después un H. Upman #4. ¿No me envidias?”.
“…Me cuidan, me cuidan un poquito entre todos. No le hacen caso a uno, siempre estoy peleando para que no me manden nada. Cuando cojo el sol por la mañana en shorts y siento el aire de mar, me parece que estoy en una playa… ¡Me van a hacer creer que estoy de vacaciones! ¿Qué diría Carlos Marx de semejantes revolucionarios?”.


¨La patria es dicha de todos, y dolor de todos, y cielo para todos, y no feudo ni capellaní­a de nadie¨ - Marti

"No temas ni a la prision, ni a la pobreza, ni a la muerte. Teme al miedo"
Giacomo Leopardi

¨Por eso es muy importante, Vicky, hijo mío, que recuerdes siempre para qué sirve la cabeza: para atravesar paredes¨Halvar de Flake [El vikingo]

"Como no me he preocupado de nacer, no me preocupo de morir" - Lorca

"Al final, no os preguntarán qué habéis sabido, sino qué habéis hecho" - Jean de Gerson

"Si queremos que todo siga como está, es necesario que todo cambie" - Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa

"Todo hombre paga su grandeza con muchas pequeñeces, su victoria con muchas derrotas, su riqueza con múltiples quiebras" - Giovanni Papini

"Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans" - John Lennon

"Habla bajo, lleva siempre un gran palo y llegarás lejos" - Proverbio Africano

"No hay medicina para el miedo" - Proverbio escoces

"El supremo arte de la guerra es doblegar al enemigo sin luchar"
- Sun Tzu

"You do not really understand something unless you can explain it to your grandmother" - Albert Einstein

"It is inaccurate to say I hate everything. I am strongly in favor of common sense, common honesty, and common decency. This makes me forever ineligible for public office" - H. L. Menken

"I swore never to be silent whenever and wherever human beings endure suffering and humiliation. We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented" - Elie Wiesel

"Stay hungry, stay foolish" -
Steve Jobs

"If you put the federal government in charge of the Sahara Desert , in five years ther'ed be a shortage of sand" - Milton Friedman

"The tragedy of modern man is not that he knows less and less about the meaning of his own life, but that it bothers him less and less" - Vaclav Havel

"No se puede controlar el resultado, pero si lo que uno haga para alcanzarlo" -
Vitor Belfort [MMA Fighter]


A la puerta de la gloria está San Pedro sentado y ve llegar a su lado a un hombre de cierta historia. No consigue hacer memoria y le pregunta con celo: ¿Quién eras allá en el suelo? Era Liborio mi nombre. Has sufrido mucho, hombre, entra, te has ganado el cielo.

Para Raul Castro

Cuba ocupa el penultimo lugar en el mundo en libertad economica solo superada por Corea del Norte.

Cuba ocupa el lugar 147 entre 153 paises evaluados en "Democracia, Mercado y Transparencia 2007"

Cuando vinieron

Cuando vinieron a buscar a los comunistas, Callé: yo no soy comunista.
Cuando vinieron a buscar a los sindicalistas, Callé: yo no soy sindicalista.
Cuando vinieron a buscar a los judíos, Callé: yo no soy judío. Cuando vinieron a buscar a los católicos, Callé: yo no soy “tan católico”.
Cuando vinieron a buscarme a mí, Callé: no había quien me escuchara.

Reverendo Martin Niemöller

Martha Colmenares

Martha Colmenares
Un sitio donde los hechos y sus huellas nos conmueven o cautivan


Donde esta el Mundo, donde los Democratas, donde los Liberales? El pueblo de Cuba llora y nadie escucha.
Donde estan los Green, los Socialdemocratas, los Ricos y los Pobres, los Con Voz y Sin Voz? Cuba llora y nadie escucha.
Donde estan el Jet Set, los Reyes y Principes, Patricios y Plebeyos? Cuba desesperada clama por solidaridad.
Donde Bob Dylan, donde Martin Luther King, donde Hollywood y sus estrellas? Donde la Middle Class democrata y conservadora, o acaso tambien liberal a ratos? Y Gandhi? Y el Dios de Todos?
Donde los Santos y Virgenes; los Dioses de Cristianos, Protestantes, Musulmanes, Budistas, Testigos de Jehova y Adventistas del Septimo Dia. Donde estan Ochun y todas las deidades del Panteon Yoruba que no acuden a nuestro llanto? Donde Juan Pablo II que no exige mas que Cuba se abra al Mundo y que el Mundo se abra a Cuba?
Que hacen ahora mismo Alberto de Monaco y el Principe Felipe que no los escuchamos? Donde Madonna, donde Angelina Jolie y sus adoptados around de world; o nos hara falta un Brando erguido en un Oscar por Cuba? Donde Sean Penn?
Donde esta la Aristocracia Obrera y los Obreros menos Aristocraticos, donde los Working Class que no estan junto a un pueblo que lanquidece, sufre y llora por la ignominia?
Que hacen ahora mismo Zapatero y Rajoy que no los escuchamos, y Harper y Dion, e Hillary y Obama; donde McCain que no los escuchamos? Y los muertos? Y los que estan muriendo? Y los que van a morir? Y los que se lanzan desesperados al mar?
Donde estan el minero cantabrico o el pescador de percebes gijonese? Los Canarios donde estan? A los africanos no los oimos, y a los australianos con su acento de hombres duros tampoco. Y aquellos chinos milenarios de Canton que fundaron raices eternas en la Isla? Y que de la Queen Elizabeth y los Lords y Gentlemen? Que hace ahora mismo el combativo Principe Harry que no lo escuchamos?
Donde los Rockefellers? Donde los Duponts? Donde Kate Moss? Donde el Presidente de la ONU? Y Solana donde esta? Y los Generales y Doctores? Y los Lam y los Fabelo, y los Sivio y los Fito Paez?
Y que de Canseco y Miñoso? Y de los veteranos de Bahia de Cochinos y de los balseros y de los recien llegados? Y Carlos Otero y Susana Perez? Y el Bola, y Pancho Cespedes? Y YO y TU?
Y todos nosotros que estamos aqui y alla rumiando frustaciones y resquemores, envidias y sinsabores; autoelogios y nostalgias, en tanto Louis Michel comulga con Perez Roque mientras Biscet y una NACION lanquidecen?
Donde Maceo, donde Marti; donde aquel Villena con su carga para matar bribones?
Cuba llora y clama y el Mundo NO ESCUCHA!!!

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