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Bitcoin Upgrades

Bitcoin's Software Gets Security Fixes, New Features 173

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the don't-modify-that-transaction dept.
itwbennett (1594911) writes "The software driving Bitcoin's network was upgraded Wednesday, with security fixes addressing a problem that defunct bitcoin exchange Mt. Gox blamed for losing nearly half a billion dollars worth of bitcoins. The latest version of bitcoin's software, 0.9.0, contains more than a half dozen fixes for transaction malleability, according to the release notes for the software. Bitcoin Core also contains a new feature for payment requests. Previously, merchants couldn't attach a note describing an invoice, and people also could not supply a refund address to a merchant. The latest version automatically supplies a refund address." This wouldn't have prevented the Mt. Gox implosion since they weren't using the reference implementation. The foundation also renamed the software to "Bitcoin Core" to avoid confusion between Bitcoin-the-network and Bitcoin-the-reference-implementation,
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Bitcoin's Software Gets Security Fixes, New Features

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  • LOL .. 0.9.0? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by gstoddart (321705) on Thursday March 20, 2014 @11:38AM (#46534801) Homepage

    Do people expect someone to take seriously a piece of software to manage financial transactions with a version like that?

    Sorry, but some of us have always looked at BitCoin and thought some combination of "why?" and "no frigging way".

    New stories over the last few months aren't doing anything to change that.

    This whole thing sounds like it's several years away from being trustworthy, by which point it will either be regulated by governments, or controlled by corporations.

    But, hey, if you want to put your money into a currency which is still getting bug fixes, go right ahead. That's your choice.

  • Re:LOL .. 0.9.0? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 20, 2014 @11:45AM (#46534885)

    While I do agree calling it something like 0.9.0 is stupid would it make a difference if it was called 9.0? It's the same software.

  • Re:LOL .. 0.9.0? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Jeremi (14640) on Thursday March 20, 2014 @11:57AM (#46534993) Homepage

    Do people expect someone to take seriously a piece of software to manage financial transactions with a version like that?

    Apparently people do take it seriously, so it looks like the answer is yes.

    Staying in the 0.x range for a long time is typical for open-source software -- a lot of packages don't go to 1.0 until they have been in use for many years. It doesn't necessarily imply anything bad (or good) about the reliability of the software.

    If BitCoin was commercial software, no doubt it would be up to Version 7 Professional Platinum Collector's Edition now... but then again, if it was commercial software, it would probably be closed source, and therefore nobody would trust it enough to use it, and we wouldn't be having this conversation.

  • Re:LOL .. 0.9.0? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by IamTheRealMike (537420) <mike@plan99.net> on Thursday March 20, 2014 @11:59AM (#46535029) Homepage

    The point of using such a version number is exactly to remind people that Bitcoin is new and experimental. It's quite possible to understand that something is a risky experiment, yet still take it seriously - these two things are not incompatible.

    But, hey, if you want to put your money into a currency which is still getting bug fixes, go right ahead. That's your choice.

    Banks and governments routinely have to upgrade banknotes and other forms of security on their own money, which you can see as "fixing bugs" in the sense that the ability to counterfeit is a bug. Development never really stops, so a 0.9 vs 1.0 is an entirely arbitrary line in the sand.

  • Re:LOL .. 0.9.0? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by gstoddart (321705) on Thursday March 20, 2014 @12:08PM (#46535141) Homepage

    If I had only looked at the version number I could have saved myself from making $50,000

    Hey, if you want to get involved in speculative investment, that's your right. But you also can't deny that theft was occuring at those lower version numbers and you could just as easily have nothing left.

    You could do the same with penny stocks and day trading as well.

    But I wouldn't do it, which is my entire point.

    So far nobody has given any reasons why BitCoin is a good idea or should be trusted, they've given the intellectual equivalent of "I know you are but what am I".

    Feel free to make you case, but if all you have is that you made money on speculative investments and therefore all speculative investments are good ... well, you're going to have to do better.

  • Re:LOL .. 0.9.0? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by IamTheRealMike (537420) <mike@plan99.net> on Thursday March 20, 2014 @12:30PM (#46535401) Homepage

    Most of Bitcoin's problems aren't with the software. Bitcoin's irrevocable money sends to anonymous remote parties are the con man's dream. At last, you can rip people off without ever giving them enough info to find you. That's why Bitcoin is such a scumbag magnet.

    You can turn that around and make the same criticism of credit cards, from the sellers perspective. They're also a scumbag magnet. Trying to sell anything with credit cards is a fraud nightmare. Banks routinely approve transactions that are later reversed due to card detail theft, and the seller is just expected to suck it up. I've seen what big sellers have to do to control fraud. And sellers matter: it takes two to tango!

    That said, Bitcoin can theoretically do dispute mediated transactions (where they could be reversed later in case of seller fraud). However the user interfaces and workflows for this are immature and so in practice it's not done much today. Perhaps this year we will see that change.

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