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Offline biophil

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A lesson to learn from Counterparty?
« on: March 25, 2014, 03:42:50 PM »

I've been casually lurking the XCP forum, and I ran across an idea that might be very powerful for BitShares-family DACs if it works.

Background for the uninitiated: Counterparty (XCP) is a crypto-2.0 that's like Mastercoin: it's a protocol built on top of bitcoin and it's intended to be a user-defined asset platform with a trustless, distributed exchange. It kinda works, but building the coin on top of bitcoin has caused some problems.

One of the big problems with XCP is that apparently the XCP protocol can't escrow BTC. So if I go onto the exchange and try to offer BTC for XCP, the counterparty protocol has no way to force me to pay the BTC that I've offered. So if my order matches with someone, I have to go in and manually make the BTC payment to my order match. It's annoying and complicated. They've tried to work around the problem with fees and some other hacks, but none of it works very well, and it all comes down to the fact that XCP can't escrow BTC.

On a slightly-different topic, one of the coolest ideas I've read on the XCP forum is what someone called "burn-to-rebirth." They were discussing moving XCP off bitcoin onto some other coin (oddly, Doge seemed to be their top choice), and someone said "why not put a version of XCP on top of every coin?" Their idea was that on the bitcoin XCP chain, you could execute what they called a "burn-to-rebirth" transaction, and this transaction would reference a Dogecoin address. This transaction would destroy the XCP on the bitcoin chain, and then the XCP protocol running on the Doge chain would see the burn-to-rebirth transaction and create an equal amount of XCP on the doge chain and credit it to the doge address specified. Here's where I read the idea: https://forums.counterparty.co/index.php/topic,195.msg1517.html#msg1517

I don't know if it's even remotely feasible - but it would be amazing if it worked, because then you'd be able to trustlessly transfer assets from one coin to another. XCP would be a bridge from blockchain to blockchain. One of the problems is the escrow issue I mentioned above - none of the blockchains are designed to allow XCP to escrow their native currencies.

Here's how this relates to Bitshares: It would be fantastic to be able to send assets back and forth from one Bitshares product to another; take my lottery winnings from Lotto and invest them in Bitshares X. Could a burn-to-rebirth type transaction be defined in Bitshares products? I realize that you'd probably need a bunch of super-nodes on the network; nodes that run all bitshares products on a single machine and run some meta-protocol that can facilitate the transfer of assets from chain to chain. It would probably be very difficult to avoid centralization here, but if the incentives are structured properly it might work fine.

It seems like you could do this without even building the meta-protocol right now; just make sure that each Bitshares product supports the things that such a meta-protocol would need. Maybe this could just be the ability for some XCP-like protocol to escrow each Bitshares chain's native currency.

Have I been clear enough that anybody understands? Does anybody think this might be workable?

Offline toast

Re: A lesson to learn from Counterparty?
« Reply #1 on: March 25, 2014, 03:46:15 PM »
You can do cross-chain trading if you have cooperative blockchains, then there's no real need to transfer assets across chains since you don't need the same token everywhere. Bitshares are always in full control of their respective blockchains so you can have whatever asset it controls in collateral and can make use of it, but we don't even need it for trading.
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Offline biophil

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Re: A lesson to learn from Counterparty?
« Reply #2 on: March 25, 2014, 04:10:05 PM »
You can do cross-chain trading if you have cooperative blockchains, then there's no real need to transfer assets across chains since you don't need the same token everywhere. Bitshares are always in full control of their respective blockchains so you can have whatever asset it controls in collateral and can make use of it, but we don't even need it for trading.

I don't think I understand... Will there be a way to take an XTS and exchange it for a DNS? Like, I can put a unit of XTS in escrow and release it to someone else when they transfer a unit of DNS to me? If that's possible, then yep, no transferring assets necessary.

Offline toast

Re: A lesson to learn from Counterparty?
« Reply #3 on: March 25, 2014, 04:30:43 PM »
If XCP "burn and rebirthed" onto a BTS chain, and both it and another BTS chain implement cross-chain trading, AND both chains spoke counterparty, then you could trade XCP with a different asset without requiring trust. But if the only role of the XCP token is to be collateral for a trustless trade between two other assets, there is no need to bring on the XCP protocol
Do not use this post as information for making any important decisions. The only agreements I ever make are informal and non-binding. Take the same precautions as when dealing with a compromised account, scammer, sockpuppet, etc.

Offline liondani

Re: A lesson to learn from Counterparty?
« Reply #4 on: March 25, 2014, 05:56:26 PM »
"OP_RETURN was originally meant to store 80 bytes of extra data in a bitcoin transaction, but the core developers slashed it to 40 bytes. This upset CounterParty, because as a financial trading platform that allows people to create new asset classes and financial derivatives to be traded on the bitcoin block chain, it says that it needed those 80 bytes to store its data."

http://www.coindesk.com/developers-battle-bitcoin-block-chain/


are bitsharesX affected from this situation ???
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Offline bitbadger

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Re: A lesson to learn from Counterparty?
« Reply #5 on: March 25, 2014, 08:16:26 PM »
"OP_RETURN was originally meant to store 80 bytes of extra data in a bitcoin transaction, but the core developers slashed it to 40 bytes. This upset CounterParty, because as a financial trading platform that allows people to create new asset classes and financial derivatives to be traded on the bitcoin block chain, it says that it needed those 80 bytes to store its data."

http://www.coindesk.com/developers-battle-bitcoin-block-chain/


are bitsharesX affected from this situation ???

No, BitShares are not affected at all, BitShares are 100% independent from the Bitcoin blockchain.  Counterparty is 100% dependent on the Bitcoin blockchain.
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Offline luckybit

Re: A lesson to learn from Counterparty?
« Reply #6 on: March 27, 2014, 01:35:34 AM »
I've been casually lurking the XCP forum, and I ran across an idea that might be very powerful for BitShares-family DACs if it works.

Background for the uninitiated: Counterparty (XCP) is a crypto-2.0 that's like Mastercoin: it's a protocol built on top of bitcoin and it's intended to be a user-defined asset platform with a trustless, distributed exchange. It kinda works, but building the coin on top of bitcoin has caused some problems.

One of the big problems with XCP is that apparently the XCP protocol can't escrow BTC. So if I go onto the exchange and try to offer BTC for XCP, the counterparty protocol has no way to force me to pay the BTC that I've offered. So if my order matches with someone, I have to go in and manually make the BTC payment to my order match. It's annoying and complicated. They've tried to work around the problem with fees and some other hacks, but none of it works very well, and it all comes down to the fact that XCP can't escrow BTC.

On a slightly-different topic, one of the coolest ideas I've read on the XCP forum is what someone called "burn-to-rebirth." They were discussing moving XCP off bitcoin onto some other coin (oddly, Doge seemed to be their top choice), and someone said "why not put a version of XCP on top of every coin?" Their idea was that on the bitcoin XCP chain, you could execute what they called a "burn-to-rebirth" transaction, and this transaction would reference a Dogecoin address. This transaction would destroy the XCP on the bitcoin chain, and then the XCP protocol running on the Doge chain would see the burn-to-rebirth transaction and create an equal amount of XCP on the doge chain and credit it to the doge address specified. Here's where I read the idea: https://forums.counterparty.co/index.php/topic,195.msg1517.html#msg1517

I don't know if it's even remotely feasible - but it would be amazing if it worked, because then you'd be able to trustlessly transfer assets from one coin to another. XCP would be a bridge from blockchain to blockchain. One of the problems is the escrow issue I mentioned above - none of the blockchains are designed to allow XCP to escrow their native currencies.

Here's how this relates to Bitshares: It would be fantastic to be able to send assets back and forth from one Bitshares product to another; take my lottery winnings from Lotto and invest them in Bitshares X. Could a burn-to-rebirth type transaction be defined in Bitshares products? I realize that you'd probably need a bunch of super-nodes on the network; nodes that run all bitshares products on a single machine and run some meta-protocol that can facilitate the transfer of assets from chain to chain. It would probably be very difficult to avoid centralization here, but if the incentives are structured properly it might work fine.

It seems like you could do this without even building the meta-protocol right now; just make sure that each Bitshares product supports the things that such a meta-protocol would need. Maybe this could just be the ability for some XCP-like protocol to escrow each Bitshares chain's native currency.

Have I been clear enough that anybody understands? Does anybody think this might be workable?

This is a good idea and I think it would work.
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Offline luckybit

Re: A lesson to learn from Counterparty?
« Reply #7 on: March 27, 2014, 01:40:43 AM »
"OP_RETURN was originally meant to store 80 bytes of extra data in a bitcoin transaction, but the core developers slashed it to 40 bytes. This upset CounterParty, because as a financial trading platform that allows people to create new asset classes and financial derivatives to be traded on the bitcoin block chain, it says that it needed those 80 bytes to store its data."

http://www.coindesk.com/developers-battle-bitcoin-block-chain/


are bitsharesX affected from this situation ???

No, BitShares are not affected at all, BitShares are 100% independent from the Bitcoin blockchain.  Counterparty is 100% dependent on the Bitcoin blockchain.

This is a set of circumstances which favors Bitshares.

Maybe have a way to pass BitAssets to alt chains like Dogecoin? I actually would think it's cool if BitUSD could be spent from a Dogecoin wallet.

But it seems only theoretically possible, I don't know how easy it would be to do that in practice even with Counterparty facilitating it. Also there could be problems with this because Mastercoin would do the same thing.

How many of these sorts of overlays can a chain support? I think its a good idea for them to move away from Bitcoin. Bitcoin was becoming too centralized, and Dogecoin is a pretty good choice. If they are successful is another matter, right now XCP is hard to use and I don't see it catching on with Dogecoin as no one wants to put their savings into Dogecoin.

I do think something like BitUSD would be great for Dogecoin though. I just don't see how you would transfer it in a way which couldn't easily be messed up.

Transferring Bitshares to Bitshares seems like it would be easy though.
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Offline bitbadger

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Re: A lesson to learn from Counterparty?
« Reply #8 on: March 27, 2014, 03:29:58 AM »
"OP_RETURN was originally meant to store 80 bytes of extra data in a bitcoin transaction, but the core developers slashed it to 40 bytes. This upset CounterParty, because as a financial trading platform that allows people to create new asset classes and financial derivatives to be traded on the bitcoin block chain, it says that it needed those 80 bytes to store its data."

http://www.coindesk.com/developers-battle-bitcoin-block-chain/


are bitsharesX affected from this situation ???

No, BitShares are not affected at all, BitShares are 100% independent from the Bitcoin blockchain.  Counterparty is 100% dependent on the Bitcoin blockchain.

This is a set of circumstances which favors Bitshares.

Well, yes, in a way, but no, in a way.  Yes in that it means that Bitshares "controls its own destiny" so to speak.  No in that the Counterparty devs didn't have to worry about any of the low-level stuff like mining or blockchain security, so they were able to create and deploy Counterparty very quickly, and they are essentially the first to market with a distributed exchange where users can create and trade different assets.

Quote
Maybe have a way to pass BitAssets to alt chains like Dogecoin? I actually would think it's cool if BitUSD could be spent from a Dogecoin wallet.

Even with Counterparty this will not be possible, the Bitcoin/Dogecoin/whatever wallet has no idea that Counterparty even exists.  You would need a Counterparty wallet which reads the transactions in the Doge blockchain.  The value of Doge is not important, it is only used as a transport.  Counterparty transactions currently send .0001086 BTC from one address to the other.  This amount of BTC could hold .0001 XCP or 1000000 XCP.  So if you had 10 XCP and wanted to send 1 XCP to 10 addresses, you would need to send 10x .0001086 BTC to each of those addresses, + Bitcoin transaction fees.  Counterparty literally rides on top of BTC, it pays transaction costs in BTC.  If you have a BTC address with 0 BTC, you could theoretically hold XCP in that same address, but you would not be able to make transactions with them until you got at least .0001086 BTC.

Quote
How many of these sorts of overlays can a chain support? I think its a good idea for them to move away from Bitcoin. Bitcoin was becoming too centralized, and Dogecoin is a pretty good choice. If they are successful is another matter, right now XCP is hard to use and I don't see it catching on with Dogecoin as no one wants to put their savings into Dogecoin.

Theoretically, infinite.  The underlying coin itself has no knowledge of the Counterparty or Mastercoin transactions.  XCP transactions are encoded as data within the transaction, whether as explicit data in OP_RETURN or "hidden" in multi-sig addresses. 

An example in a fake Counterparty-like protocol: Imagine if you sent .0000001 BTC to the address "1HeyManNiceShotluckybit213Jk2R3".  The "HeyMan" protocol would be looking for transactions to addresses starting in "1HeyMan".  It then parses the rest of it and executes a "NiceShot" transaction with "luckybit" for the amount of 213.  This isn't exactly how Counterparty works, but it gives you the idea.  The transaction data is "hidden" in normal BTC/DOGE/whatever transactions.
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