Month: October 2016

Watch Bill Murray’s Best Appearances At Chicago’s Wrigley Field

Cubs win! Cubs win! 103 times this baseball regular season the Chicago Cubs won a baseball game, ultimately leading to their appearance in the 2016 World Series. The first World Series game featuring the Chicago Cubs since 1945. The team hasn’t won a World Series since 1998. Tonight, the first World Series game at Wrigley Field takes place at 7:08pm.

Famous actor and comedian Bill Murray, who was born in Chicago’s northern suburbs, has long been a fan of the Chicago Cubs, and will even sing the seventh inning stretch for the World Series game.

GoldSilverBitcoin did some deep research and put together – all in one place – Bill Murray’s best appearances at Wrigley Field.

On 8.8.88 – the first night game ever played at Wrigley Field – Harry opens up some Budweiser and says: “This Bud’s for you, Bill Murray.”  Harry asks about Bill’s mother and they discuss night baseball.

“I don’t know how I feel about night baseball…but it’s somewhere else to go in town other than your restaurant,” Bill tells Harry. Bill even says he might take Harry’s job.

“I think when I completely lose my mind here, I am gonna step up into your spot here in the booth.”

Bill will be singing ‘Take Me Out to the Ballgame’ at the World Series game. Here is one the famous comedian, known these days perhaps for his appearances in Wes Anderson films, dedicated to Harry, Jack and Gabby Hartman.

“Buy me some peanuts and cracker jacks – and a beer!” Murray sings.

In the next video, Bill Murray is with Cubs broadcaster Steve Stone for a  pre-game interview. Taking over for Harry that day, Bill even stays in the booth, asking “who is this stiff walking into the box,” before Stone answers the question. In this video, you can see Murray taking mean swings. The pitcher almost beaned him.

“Rubber spikes is as good as it ever got for me,” he said.

Murray says he was baptised a Cubs fan.

Here Bill wants to take the game back for the people, away from the media, and almost sings the National Anthem from the crowd.

Here, Bill Murray appears in a wiffle ball game at Wrigley Field wearing an old time jersey. He can be seen in this CSN Chicago video with other famous movie and television stars.

Here Bill throws out the first pitch at a 2012 Wrigley field game. But, he does it a bit differently, first choosing to run around the bases before throwing out the first pitch.

And, finally, for the 2016 season, Bill hopes to break the curse of the Billy Goat.

 

“Bier-Jesus von Mariendorf” and His Temple

Stone’s bearded CEO and co-founder Greg Koch already has nicknames in Germany: “Bier Jesus von Mariendorf,” referencing the Berlin suburb where the new  “Stone Brewing World Bistro & Gardens Berlin” is located. Another one: “Bier-Rocker.Berliner Kurier refers to the new Stone location as his ‘temple.’

Yelpers! and reporters alike question Stone’s location ten minutes from the nearest subway or suburban trains. This does not bother the 52-year-old Koch.

“In our hometown of San Diego, California, we are ranked number three largest brewery with a similar location,” he told the Berliner Morgenpost October 1 after Stone Berlin soft-opened, and one month before recent layoffs at Stone’s in San Diego County. Koch wants the new Germany location to serve 17 European countries.

Craft beer for all Europe,” reads a headline by the Berliner Abendblatt.

The brewery is designed to produce nearly 100,000 barrels of beer annually. Stone was available in just 25 Berlin restaurants before the new Berlin location opened.

“I prefer beer brewed with creativity, passion and knowledge,” says Koch. He is surprised that “cheap” for many Germans is more important than quality.

Many have wondered what Germans will think of the stronger aromas and higher alcohol content of San Diego craft beers, as well as Stone’s bitter flavors.

One Yelper! warns others about Stone’s different taste than traditional German beer, describing international bitterness units and where Stone falls on that scale. “Have a big glass of water with the beer,” the Yelper! Writes. “I had a 0.3 Hasel and coconut brewed beer (without liquor), and it tasted remarkably well.” Commenters commend the 65 types of beer, from Stone and local German brands, on tap.

“One seeks in vain the sweet beer mixed drinks (a.k.a Radler) at Stone,” writes Daniel H. of Berlin, referencing popular drinks in Germany that mix fruits with beers.

“The American beer recipes take some getting used to,” says Berliner M. W.

“The beer tastes super,” says Berlin resident Patrick J.

“Craft beer lovers get their money’s worth here,” says.Commenters nearly ubiquitously lamented Stone’s high prices in Berlin.

“I’m not ready to pay California prices,” says one commenter. They finish the comment in English: “This Ain’t California in Mariendorf.” Further, Germans express disappointment with a ‘No Smoking’ terrace.

“Smoking is forbidden on the terrace,” complains Dusan S of Berlin on the Yelp! for Stone’s new location in Berlin, Germany. “Incomprehensible!!!”

Koch’s vision for the Berlin location, after all, was somewhere  “which takes you far away, and in the middle of Berlin.”

Eleven beers are brewed on site. Morgenpost reports the “hoppy” Indian Pale Ale is most popular at the European location, followed by Cali-Belgique Indian Pale Ale and then Arrogant Bastard Ale.

Koch calls the 115-year-old, 2400-square-meter building with numerous gardens a “world-class destination for relaxation in a creative, environmentally friendly environment.”

Glistening bright tanks are separated by a glass wall from the gastronomical area, where experimental meat and vegetarian dishes are served from a food truck, such as duck tacos. It cost Stone 23 million euros. Like it’s Escondido location, tours of the facilities are offered.

“It took a lot of time and countless hours to get where we are now,” says Koch about Stone Berlin.

Here’s The Medical Staff Who Green-Lighted Pitcher With Ten Stitches In Pinky

Ten stitches in his pinky after a freak drone accident, Cleveland Indians pitchers Trevor Bauer, 24, could not last through the first inning, lasting just two-thirds of an inning. Throwing mid-nineties fastball unsurprisingly ripped his most ulnar little finger apart as the blood became clearly seen to viewers on TV in a gruesome scene on Toronto’s mound, It surely earned the MLB broadcast more than the “NA” (not applicable) parental guidance rating.

As Fox Sports reported, Bauer had barely healed. In baseball, the sort of departmentalization popular in Wall Street corporations, as well in other industries, have led to different individuals being responsible for different aspects of overseeing players and staff. 

Along with Manager Terry Francona, Lonnie Soloff, 41, helped steer Cleveland Indians to the fateful decision to throw Bauer. In his third year as Senior Director of Medical Services for the Cleveland Indians, Soloff spent ten years as head athletic trainer. According to PBAT.com, “he leads the organization’s efforts in research and development pertaining to physical development, performance enhancement and injury prevention while assisting club executives in short-term and long-term injury risk assessments relative to strategic amateur and professional player personnel decisions.”

Soloff participates in clinical research and lectures. In 2007, he earned the Major League Athletic Training Staff of the Year and Dick martin Awards. He served as the American League athletic trainer for the 2012 for MLB All-Star game.

Warning: Videos are graphic.

During the game, TBS interviewed Francona. “When I saw blood on the rubber, that’s not a good sign things are going well,” he said. “I told him to keep the ball it might be worth something. I tried to make light of the situation.”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R5FuUkyJ8o8

 

As the Toronto fans cheered in a fit of schadenfreude, Bauer waved to them as a member of the Cleveland training staff patted his back. The scene makes you wonder if Bauer was subject in some sort of weird clinical trial to see just how far the pinky could be pushed! Hopefully everything heels well. Needless to say, Bauer is a “beast mode” in the spirit of sports machismo. 

Something Spread By Direct Contact Caused People To Hallucinate In Oregon

When a 78 year-old patient, her caregiver, two sheriff’s deputies and hospital employees began hallucinating, a hospital in Coos Bay, Oregon quarantined its emergency room. Officials are still looking for answers.

KVAL-TV News reported Wednesday: the hallucinations began in the early hours of Wednesday. At 3 a.m. a elderly woman’s caregiver, a 52-year-old woman, called authorities to report vandals destroying her car. A deputy responded, but found nothing. The caregiver then called back at 5:30am and deputies took her to a Bay Area hospital suspecting medical issues. She appeared fine and went home, but then two deputies began hallucinating and were hospitalized. The 78-year-old then having a similar experience.

A Coos County Haz Mat Team was dispatched to Bay Area Hospital and to the residence.

“No source of contaminate has been identified or found,” Sgt. Pat Downing of the Coos County Sheriff’s Office said in a press release.

This San Francisco Giant World Series Champion Cheers The Cubs

Tim Flannery led an accomplished Major League Baseball career. He was on the only two San Diego Padres teams since that franchise was incorporated in 1969 to go to the World Series, in 1984 as a utilityman and in 1998 as third base coach on a team which included the likes of Bruce Bochy at the helm and Tony Gwynn going deep at Yankee Stadium.

After Flannery and the Padres parted ways, Flannery focused more on music and coaching his son, Danny, at baseball, until in 2009 his old friend Bruce Bochy asked him to coach in San Francisco. After a rough 2009, Flannery wasn’t sure how long he’d last. But, in 2010, the Giants started a run which saw them win the World Series three times for the city on the Bay.

Earlier this week, the Giants lost to the Chicago Cubs, and Flannery – who is now an analyst for the Giants, MLB and leads his band, Tim Flannery & The Lunatic Fringe – gave the team his blessing.

Trump & Clinton Debate Sex Assault Comments Tape

Early in the Presidential Debate, attention turned to recent recordings leaked from a 2005 discussion in which Trump made derogatory comments towards women.

“This was locker room talk,” he said. “I’m not proud of it. I apologize to my family, to the American people. Certainly, I’m not proud of it.”

He added: “I have great respect for women. Nobody has more respect for women than i do. You hear these things. I was embarrassed by it. I have tremendous respect for women, and women have respect for me.” 

Like everyone else, I spent a lot of thinking over the last 48 hrs about what we heard and saw,” Mrs. Clinton said. “With prior republican nominees, I disagreed with them on policies and principles, but I never questioned their fitness to serve. Donald trump is different. I said starting back in June he was not fit to be commander and chief.  And many republicans and independents have said the same thing. What we all saw and heard on Friday was Donald talking about women, what he thinks about women, what he does to women, and he has said the video doesn’t represent who he is. But i think it’s clear to anyone who heard it that it represents  who he is. We’ve seen this throughout the campaign, we have seen him assault women, rate women on appearance, ranking them from 1 to 10, we’ve seen him embarrass woman on TV and Twitter. We saw him after the first debate, nearly a week denigrating a former miss universe in the harshest most personal terms.”

She added: “Yes, this is who Donald Trump is. But it’s not only women, and it;s not only this video that raises questions about his fitness to be our president because he has also targeted immigrants, native americans, latinos, people with disabilities, pows, muslims and so many others.”

Trump concluded: “Its just words, those words. I’ve been hearing them for many years, I heard them when they were running senate where Hillary was gonna bring jobs back to upstate New York and she failed. Hillary is constantly talking about inner cities which are a disaster education wise.  I am going to help african americans, latinos, hispanics.” He then evoked Bill Clinton.

“What President Clinton did he was impeached, lost his license to practice law, he had to pay 850k to one of the women, Paula Jones,” he said. “I will tell you, that when Hillary brings up a point like that and she talks about words i said years ago, i think it’s disgraceful and I think she should be ashamed of herself.”

Clinton then riposted: “I am reminded of what my friend Michelle Obama advised us all: ‘when they go low, you go high.'”

Former Robocoin CEO: We Understand Fraud

Sporting jeans, a cool white shirt and a smooth-looking coat, once-embattled former Robocoin CEO, and current Romit CEO, Jordan Kelley recently gave a compelling pitch, in which he claims his machines did $150 million (trust us guys!).

In 2014, a post appeared on Reddit claiming owed $25,000. From there, the company quickly disintegrated and individuals who had purchased machines were left to reformulate them. That led to multiple Bitcoin ATM companies, like Lamassu, attempting to salvage the bricks with their own software.

Robocoin, based in Las Vegas, dominated the Bitcoin ATM market in early years. Although Kelley has claimed to be the first Bitcoin ATM on many occasions, the truth is otherwise: A man named Todd Bethel actually posted about the concept and pursued the project, and even had a working prototype, as well.

Kelley’s new firm attempts to tackle the seven trillion payments market.

In a pitch for his new startup, Kelley stated: We’ve got an interesting team. A very interesting one. One that has a fair amount of understanding of the world of fraud. 

Read a transcript of Kelley’s pitch below:

Romit is a payment platform that eliminates fraud and chargebacks for the 7 trillion dollar million merchant banking industry

We launched five months ago and have already processed 280,000 transactions. We are doing that at a delightful growth of 52% month over month. We are also earning 400 basis points per transaction in net revenue which is 4x industry average and we have over 3.5 billion  worth of volume currently onboarding onto our platform. The merchant banking industry processes more than 7t worth of credit card transactions on an annual basis. These merchant banks acquire their merchants with sales, these sales organizations you’ve heard of two of them at least, Paypal and Stripe, currently command 5% of total market volume. The other 95% are woefully underrepresented, woefully.

They lack high tech which results in high chargebacks and fraud, the good news is that romit has developed an incredibly modern and beautiful payment platform. We solved the biggest problems…the merchants were averaging  1.2%  chargebacks, we got that down to to .0079% charge backs on a monthly basis after they onboard on our platform. That’s a big deal. A really big deal.

We’ve got an interesting team. A very interesting one. One that has a fair amount of understanding of the world of fraud. We invented the world’s first ATM we processed over 150$ dollar across 14 currencies in 19 languages without ever one time being compromised in the financial technology industry highest risk category.

 

A-Mark Acquires Silvertowne

A-Mark Precious Metals, a Southern California based precious metals trading company distributor for all the major sovereign mints,  acquired a majority stake in Indiana-based SilverTowne Mint.

SilverTowne Mint, a leading producer of fabricated silver products, has produced about 12.5 million silver ounces.

A-Mark will increase its purchases of fabricated silver products from SilverTowne Mint as well as providing SilverTowne customers with A-Mark’s full range of products and services.

SilverTowne Mint designs and produces more than 25 different fabricated silver bullion products and more than 300 different seasonal and topical specialty products. A-Mark intends to leverage SilverTowne Mint’s longstanding fabrication capabilities and extensive coin die portfolio to expand its custom coin programs, as well as introducing innovative, new custom products for individual customers.

“It’s a remarkable opportunity for SilverTowne to join forces with A-Mark,” said Hendrickson. “We are excited to provide our customers with the product selection, and finance and service options that will be available to them through our partnership with A-Mark.  As a family owned and operated business for three generations, I’m proud of what we have accomplished within our industry, but I’m even more excited about the level of service we will be able to provide to our customers as a result of this joint venture with A-Mark.”

Greg Roberts, CEO of A-Mark Precious Metals, commented: “The acquisition of SilverTowne Mint is truly unparalleled in the mint fabrication industry. SilverTowne Mint will be one of the most efficient vertically integrated mints in North America, benefiting from Asahi’s global refining capabilities as part of the strategic supplier agreement and A-Mark’s industry-leading distribution network.

“The acquisition also provides A-Mark with two world-class traders in Rita Graft and Patty Roberts, who have 47 years of combined experience and will join our international trading team. In addition, the numerous operating synergies between A-Mark and SilverTowne will significantly expand our capacity to meet unforeseen surges in demand during volatile market environments, such as the one we experienced last August and September.

“Most importantly, our exclusive distributorship with SilverTowne will enable us to sell a greater amount of silver per year to fulfill the increasing demand of our existing customers and service a broader range of potential customers. This helps us further establish our reputation for being not only one of the leading bullion trading companies, but also a full-service precious metals provider with a complete array of value-added services, including financing, storage, and logistics.”

Bruno Mars Drops New Single, “24k Magic”

Bruno Mars is back with a new hit song – – and music video to accompany it. The video, as many modern music videos, demonstrate a lavish lifestyle with private jets, hotel rooms and designer outfits in Las Vegas.

As one might expect for a music video titled, “24K Magic,” Mars sports numerous gold necklaces, gold colored shades. Generally, the color gold and be seen throughout the music video.

Alongside plenty of booty, Mars shouts out, “hustlers, gangsters, bad bitches and your ugly ass friends.”

Generally, the number “24” features throughout the video. 24 karat gold is among the most solid golds, checking him most of the time at percent pure gold. It’s the gold preferred by many gold-loving cultures throughout the world, while lesser karatages are popular in the US. Oftentimes, many of the old jewelry in the US comes under even its marked karatage of 12-18k.

The US Mint Won’t Even Buy Back Its Own Coins

Importers of scrap coins have waited for years as the US government tested coins, failing to return them without due process. Many coins appear to have been released by the government to go back to the proper owners. Yes, the U.S. Mint’s suspended buyback program remains suspended, meaning the US government won’t buy back its own currency. Coin recyclers are searching for other means to redeem their coin inventory.

The U.S. Bureau of Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is due to release over $700,000 in coin shipments to three importers, and pay over  $300,000 in melted coins detained and withheld without due process since 2014 and 2015, sources say.

Portland, Ore.-based Portland Mint LLC learned of the release of a shipment detained by the CBP for 507 days, according AMM.

The Mint’s program means recyclers will have to get creative. They can’t melt the coins down themselves, as it’s illegal to destroy U.S. currency. Coin recyclers are waiting to hear from the U.S. government what they can do with the piles of coins they’re collecting at global facilities.  Recyclers bemoan that the US government won’t even buy back its own currency.

“The suspension of shipments to the Mint has caused a severe business hardship, as we have been held up from shipping to the Mint for nearly 18 months. This includes almost six months prior to the formal suspension of the program in which we were unable to get an appointment to deliver coins,” according to an anonymous heavy media plant operator.

“While we understand and can deal with the market risks associated with scrap metals, we could never have imagined the current scenario under which U.S. currency has essentially become worthless with no ability to monetize it. … We are currently looking at various methods to clean and recirculate these coins, as we need to be able to recoup some of the costs already expended. On a much broader level, if the program stays on hold what impact will the continued suspension have on the monetary value of the coins and U.S. currency?” the source rhetorically asked.

Luke Palen, president of Rosemount, Minn.-based Spectro Alloys Corp.

concurred: “We’re frustrated that the program is still offline due to the fact that we want to be able to capture the value of all these coins.”

More frustration by other industry insiders: “This is currency and its value is being lost,” said Steve Bossotti, senior vice president of Morristown, N.J.-based Covanta Holding Corp.’s metals management division. Covanta might sort through its inventory for unmutilated coins – roughly one-third of the company’s coins.

Bossotti noted: “We are evaluating cleaning and sorting the coins and returning them into the U.S. banking system. We’d spend more time to process (them) and get less value but if the status quo continues, we have to look at doing something different because it’s value being lost.”

Industry CEO’s are willing to work with the government. “…But the Mint and Treasury haven’t even replied or taken us up on our offer,” Johnson said.

He added: “I don’t know how they can make a valid choice to stop the program, but we also understand that they need to figure it out. … This is U.S. currency and recyclers have a legal duty to redeem it. We need the Mint to lift the suspension as soon as possible.” The Treasury isn’t set to make a change to the program until November 2.

“The coins aren’t going anywhere until the program is resumed. It’s encouraging to see that the U.S. government is releasing our coins, but until the program comes out of a suspension there will continue to be far-reaching impacts through the industry,” said John J. Coughlin, a Moorestown, N.J.-based attorney representing three importers who are now suing the government for failing to return inventory without due process.

Did Bitcoin Already Have A Block Crisis?

As developers for Bitcoin called for a temporary halt to Bitcoin transactions on 3/11/2013, many members of the community began holding their breath.

Many of these individuals had only just entered into the realm of decentralized, online currencies. Could it be that they were watching the end of the BTC experiment before their very eyes?

Others acted in contribution to a sharp sell-off resulting in the currency briefly falling 23 percent to $37 before regaining much of its value thereafter.

Still others implored everyone, except for miners, to just wait this out “a few hours.” The compromise took place at the network’s core, in the shared transaction register called the blockchain. Nobody wants such uncertainty in a payment system. So, here is basically what happened: It is central to the Bitcoin protocol that all new blocks have been accepted by the entire Bitcoin network. Sometimes, if a client announces a block that half the network accepts and the other half rejects, the result might be a fork in the network.

With different nodes disagreeing about what transactions took place on the valid block, and which took place on the invalid, the system was thrown into seeming chaos.

This transpired on Monday evening, 3/11/2013, as a block produced contended that the latest version of the Bitcoin software, version 0.8, recognized as valid, but that nodes still running version 0.7 or earlier rejected.

“After some emergency discussion on #bitcoin-dev, it seems best to try to get the majority mining power back on the ‘old’ chain, that is, the one which 0.7 accepts,” wrote Bitcoin developer Pieter Wuille in an e-mail. “That is the only chain every client out there will accept. If you’re a miner, please revert to 0.7 until we at least understand exactly what causes this.”

Merchants were asked to stop accepting transactions until problems were solved. Mt Gox, the leading Bitcoin exchange, announced that it would suspend Bitcoin transactions.

Coins “mined” and transactions that took place in the few hours ahead of the fork and during it were not safe, while all other transactions were. Except for the transactions and mined coins during the period of uncertainty, no other Bitcoin were in danger of being lost.

Of course, confidence had been tested. Bitcoin’s high of $48 earlier on Monday evening resulted in a 23% drop to less than $37 by 10PM Central time.

So,  before Bitcoin would launch to $266, its’ core was put to the test. The decentralized nature of the cryptocurrency means nobody can order everyone to abandon the 0.8 branch of the blockchain for the 0.7 branch. The branch will be chosen by a vote of the network’s computing power.

Developers will have to convince most miners or nodes to voluntarily downgrade their software. The warning was sound at Bitcoin Talk, as a Hero Member wrote:

Hello everyone,

there is an emergency right now: the block chain has split between 0.7+earlier and 0.8 nodes. I’ll explain the reasons in a minute, but this is what you need to know now:

 

After a discussion on #bitcoin-dev, it seems trying to get everyone on the old chain again is the least risky solution.

If you’re a miner, please do not mine on 0.8 code. Stop, or switch back to 0.7. BTCGuild is switching to 0.7, so the old chain will get a majority hash rate soon.

If you’re a merchant: please stop processing transactions until the chains converge.

If you’re on 0.7 or older, the client will likely tell you that you need to upgrade. Do not follow this advise – the warning should go away as soon as the old chain catches up.

If you are not a merchant or a miner, don’t worry.

The original post lacked info for “regular users”. Here it is:(1) If you are a “regular user” (not a miner), the best thing is to do nothing and wait a couple hours.

(2) If you are a “regular user”, upgrading, downgrading, whining, FUD, etc, will make no difference. Only miners have an incentive to do anything. Otherwise, it doesn’t matter which version you are running.

(3) Regardless of who you are, your transactions are not dead, your coins are not lost.  They will just temporarily be held up. If you sent a transaction within the last few hours, it may take a few more hours before it’s sorted out.

If you insist on processing transactions right now it’s probably best to wait 30+ confirmations.  It’s just due diligence though … an attacker would still need a tremendous amount of mining power, quick thinking, and a victim willing to part with a lot of BTC.

By tomorrow this will be in the past and everything will appear to be normal again.  If you slept through this, you’d never know that anything happened (except for the price drop).

Let me reiterate, your coins are not at risk, your transactions are not lost.  It’ll just take some time for the network to “iron itself out.”  Everything will be okay.

As time passed, it became clear that 0.7 and older nodes had a limit on the “size of the modification it can make atomically to the database. With the larger blocks of the past days, it seems to have triggered the limit. The result is that 0.7 (by default, it can be tweaked manually) will not accept “too large” blocks.

However. 0.8 (which uses a different database system) has no such limit, and happily accepts the block. As the majority of the hash power was on 0.8, the longest chain ended up using this block, which is not accepted by older nodes. Another Hero Member calmed a Junior Member:

Yes, they’re safe. (You should make sure to keep the old wallet just in case, but since your transactions were done yesterday and presumably many people will re-run all lost transactions, it shouldn’t matter.)

1) If you run a mining pool or are mining solo, and have upgraded to 0.8, downgrade to 0.7.

2) If you are a normal user, do not perform any important Bitcoin transactions until you get the all clear.

3) If you are a pool miner and you know your pool has not downgraded, stop mining.

4) If you performed any transactions recently, be warned that you cannot rely on them.

Five hours after the original announcement of the emergency had been posted to Reddit, a new thread had been created called “back on the main chain” which celebrated that the Bitcoin network had seemingly been restored to the proper chain of blocks.

The first comment on this thread reads: “I’d like to thank each and every miner out there who acted in their own rational self-interest to preserve the integrity of bitcoins. It’s as if the system actually works!”

To be sure, the Bitcoin network was compromised by this “hard fork.” A potential problem, for instance, was double-spending.

There could have developed a much more urgent issue, but the developers and miners responded quickly to fix the problem. The decentralized network of people worked to quickly fix itself, in other words.

As one Reddit commenter observed: “Look at how long it takes for governments and banks to fix major issues.”

The hard fork got 10+ confirmations deep before the problem was discovered, the possible consequences considered, solutions discussed and solution implemented. This took 25 minutes.

This compromise was a crisis of sorts, but the network of individuals prevented the Bitcoin network from being split.

End-users were hardly affected. Some possible limitations to the current iteration of Bitcoin might be the max block size limit. At this time, there can only be enough space in each block for about 7 transactions per second, according to some developers. Thus, the risk of forking.

Other Bitcoin enthusiasts maintain that the speed with which the hard fork was rectified is astounding and a true win for Bitcoin.

Patrick Murck anticipates that if leading mining pools teamed up to fork the block chain, “Many lawyers would jump on the opportunity for antitrust lawsuits… From my perspective this would clearly be an offence worth litigating.”

How Bitcoin Works

“It seems to me that simple altruism can suffice to keep the > network running properly.”  – Satoshi Nakamoto

This section gets a bit technical.  Few truly understand how bitcoin functions, but by coming into contact, if even briefly, with the degrees of technology that go into powering a p2p network like bitcoin, one can have their mind expanded. To paraphrase Karl Marx, “the masses must live through the revolution in order to understand the revolution.”

“Preliminary research” suggests that bitcoin is an autonomous thing. In other words, the bitcoin open-source community acts as one united soul – an institutional-entrepreneur – in which countless actions of individual agents converge over time to create the bitcoin hologram. The collective and not the individual, nor a single organization, resolve the future of bitcoin. But, this collective is comprised of diverse individuals: of communists, of libertarians, of anarchists, of speculators and of the a-political. What inspired these individuals to create this community? Bitcoin.

Bitcoins are computer files, so they behave similarly to a music or a text file, and can be destroyed or lost like any computer file. Many say bitcoin is digital cash. To be sure, bitcoin is not exactly like physical cash. When you lose cash, someone else can theoretically find it.

If you lose bitcoins, they are not readily available to another person unless you were hacked. Lost bitcoins are not just found in cyberspace by web-surfers.  Also, your brain does not store a trail as to where your cash was last. If a $100 bill falls out of your pocket, you might not have access to any data whatsoever as to what-in-the-world happened. Potentially, when you lose bitcoins, a computer security expert can do research into the issue.  

As Trace Mayer puts it, “Bitcoin is like a gold coin that you can e-mail.” As we’ve covered, the central aspect of bitcoin is that it is an open-source software and community, and open-source communities are strangers, from anywhere in the world with Internet access, coming together and self-organizing around a shared interest so as to create value through sharing knowledge and innovation.

Undoubtedly, the community has not been able to tame the tide of misconceptions about bitcoin. Such as that bitcoin’s are backed by nothing. Therefore, bitcoin is not a virtual gold. But, the value of gold is largely reflected in the amount of energy consumed in mining and refining the metal, which contributes just as much to gold’s value as does its suitability as money.  As one individual once put it, “a gold coin represents a large amount of land, highly refined, with the input of a great deal of energy, labor and capital.”

In a similar manner, bitcoins represent the computing power, energy and capital required to create them. It takes specialized technology running for sometimes many days to create a bitcoin. This was even true many years ago. Like mining for precious metals, it is not easy to mine bitcoins profitably. Bitcoin mining is extremely competitive, as we will detail later, and it’s rarely a profitable venture unless higher future prices in bitcoin are assumed.  A main advantage of bitcoin is its peer-to-peer nature. This means there is no “issuing authority” for bitcoin, no central depository or central bank.

What Happens If Someone Tries To Buy Up All The Bitcoins?

Newbies to bitcoin have asked on the Bitcoin Forum, BitcoinTalk, “What if someone tries to buy up all of the bitcoins?”

It is essentially impossible to buy all the bitcoins in existence. As they were purchased, the price of the bitcoins would rise exponentially. As Erik Vorhees asked a Newbie in the Bitcoin Talk Forum: “Imagine how much this mysterious buyer would need to pay for the last bitcoin still available? Who would sell it, and at what price? If there were only a few coins left, the price would be several millions of dollars, and people would simply use the fractions of a coin in the same they today use a full coin.”  Some analysts, like former StockHouse CEO and current CEO of TDV Media, Jeff Berwick, have said that bitcoin will not be purchasable in US dollars within five years, citing the current crisis of confidence in the US dollar.

The resources that would be poured into bitcoin would be immense, posits Vorhees. He contends: “I can think of nothing that would accelerate the strength, power, and development of bitcoin more than ‘someone trying to buy all the coins.’

Sex Not Linked To Worse Sports Performance

Ronda Rousey said in 2012 she tries to have “as much sex as possible” before a big fight to boost her testosterone. Scientists are finding that she’s, at least, not wrong.

University of Florence, in Italy, recently published in the journal Frontiers in Psychology, found no truth to pre-competition sex and worse athletic results. It determined any connection was anecdotal, and not scientific.

“In fact, unless [sex] takes place less than two hours before, the evidence actually suggests sexual activity may have a beneficial effect on sports performance,” lead author Laura Stefani says.

Rousey’s claims that sex boosts a woman’s testosterone might not be so wrong:  “there has been some research that’s found that,” says Sari Locker, Ph.D., a sex educator at Columbia University. But she reiterates that sex doesn’t cause much physical effect.

DoJ Arrests Man For Phishing Stolen Darknet Accounts, Stealing Bitcoins

The dark web, having gained a reputation for offering illicit goods and narcotics, caught the attention of authorities after the Silk Road fueled much early Bitcoin price activity. Law enforcement’s subsequent focus on the dark web continues to this day. “We are well aware of these websites” authorities in Australia said in September.

In the US, the Department of Justice announced charges October 6 against Michael Richo, 34, of Wallingford, Connecticut on a criminal complaint charging him with access device fraud, computer fraud, wire fraud, identity theft and money laundering offenses tied to his phishing to steal bitcoins.

Deirdre M. Daly, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, and Patricia M. Ferrick, Special Agent in Charge of the New Haven Division of the Federal Bureau of Investigation filed the complaint, which alleges Richo partook in an online phishing scheme to steal bitcoins from people on the dark web, where the crypto-currency is often accepted as a payment means.

Richo allegedly posted fraudulent links to online marketplaces on dark web forums. Users were brought to a fake login page made to look like the proper login page for online marketplaces. Richo then stole usernames and passwords and monitored people’s bitcoin balances on the darkweb marketplace they had intended to log into. When bitcoins were deposited, Richo withdrew them and sent them to his own bitcoin wallet.

Richo saved more than 10,000 usernames and passwords on his computer. Richo appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge Sarah A.L. Merriam in New Haven. He was released on a $100,000 bond.

Richo faces 20 years in prison for money laundering, another 20 years for wire fraud, 10 years for access device fraud, five years for computer fraud and two years for each identity theft.

Bitcoin has been called money in other court cases, such as the court case of Trendon Shavers, in which the defendant was accused of running bitcoin’s first major ponzi scheme.

See complaint here.