Orange IV Node Application 12087100822

Respondent ID 12087100822
End Date 10/26/2020 1:08:39 PM
language en
If you have previously applied to be a node please provide us with your application ID.
City/Town Junglinster
State/Province Luxembourg
Country Luxembourg
What languages do you speak? Absolute fluent in: German, English, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, Dutch, French, Luxembourgish
What is your occupation? Privacy/Security
Non-technical Role or Other (please specify)
How many years experience in your field? 16+
What is the highest degree or level of school you have completed? Master’s degree (for example: MA, MS, MEng, MEd, MSW, MBA)
Did you purchase xx coins in the xx coin sale? Yes
Are you an individual or a group? Individual
Node City Junglinster
Node State/Province Grevenmacher
Node Country Luxembourg
For which networks have you ever operated a node?
  • Other (please specify): RCHAIN, GRIMM, GRINN, DEFIS, ZenProcol
What kind of improvements would you like to see in xx network nodes vs. previous nodes you have supported? Nothing in particular, I mean each node/network has its tweaks, and there is learning experience, which is normal. However, if there is something that I could dream for, if that tooling would become more standardized across projects. Not easy to achieve, I know.
What are potential setbacks preventing you from operating an xx network node? Health or related private matters
What is the maximum upload bandwidth in megabits per second your node can provide? 1GB contractually (935 Speedtest)
What is the maximum download bandwidth in megabits per second your node can provide? 937
What is a reasonable uptime estimate you can provide for your BetaNet node? 95
Please estimate the cost of electricity in the geographic area where your BetaNet node will be running. 30-50 EUR approximately
On a monthly basis, how much time can you publicly commit to dedicating toward governance if you were selected as a BetaNet node operator?` 56
In what type of environment would this server be located? Personal Home
If your server is located in your personal home, please specify the name of your Internet Service Provider (ISP). LUXEMBOUR ONLINE
If your server is located in a Datacenter, please specify the name of the company hosting it. Servers are in private home
Do you have past experience deploying hardware servers in a datacenter? 15+ years professional hands-on experience in DataCenters, architecture design and deployment (including phsical, config setup, etc.) of proxy servers, reverse proxies, IDS/IPS, Firewalls, Mail gateways/Relays, AV severs, Mobile Device Management Servers, Authentication Servers, CA servers etc., routers, switches, DNS servers. Highly redundant setups, dynamic routing, load balancing etc.
Do you already own sufficient hardware to meet the published xx network BetaNet Node specifications? AMD Ryzen 7 2700x 6 Nvidia GeForce RTX 2070, 32 GB RAM Samsung 970 PRO SSD 1TB M.2 NVMe
Do you have hardware you would like to use but does not meet the stated BetaNet node specs? If so, please provide specs on that hardware below:
Why do you want to be a node? I am strongly security and privacy focused, and consider censorship resistance the main achievements of the (initially Bitcoin) crypto movement, besides crypto economics for network security, incentives and mass human coordination. I believe a decentralized world in which the large majority of humans have direct access to financial services and in which everybody can be part of and has stake in, is a better system, not only in terms of finance and economy but also to solve the major problems that humanity is facing - which in essence boil down to problems of misaligned incentives, not sufficient coordination and human error. I hope that by running a node, I can do my small part and help David in achieving his vision.
How did you originally hear about the xx network? Web 3.0 Summit 2019, Berlin - and later on Web Summit 2019, Lisbon, and a friend who is also node operator
Which current xx network communities are you a member of?
  • Telegram
  • Discord
Are you an active member of those communities? Yes
What specifically, interests you about the xx network platform? Privacy on a scalable, decentralised, censorship resistant network.
Outside of xx network communities, are you an active participant in other node or developer community groups? If so, which ones? RCHAIN, Dfinity, Solana
Have you ever attended a blockchain conference? If so, which one(s)? The first blockchain/crypto pure-play conference I attended was: Bl0ckcha1n 2015 (Paris). Since then I attended a bunch of crypto conferences, including: Web3 Summit (first and second 2018+2019), ZK Summit 2018 Berlin, RCON 2018 Berlin, Eurocrypt (2019, Darmstadt), ARACON (Aragon DAO 2019), Consensys 2020, Ready Layer One 2020, EthCC 2019, Dezental (Berlin 2018), Luxembourg Zero Knowledge Days (Luxembourg 2019) TEGG 2019, DappCon 2019, Berlin Blockchain week 2018 and 2019, Infrachain (Luxembourg 2018, 2019 several LetzBlock events (since 2018, Luxembourg) many blockchain and crypto meet-ups. Startup events, with blockchain/crypto elements:EBAN and LBAN events, events at Luxembourg House of Financial Technology (LHOFT) 20/ ICT Spring Conference (2014-2020, Luxembourg), 3x3 Seminar Series by University of Luxembourg, Word of Opportunities (Luxembourg, 2019), Web Summit (Lisbon, 2019). As a speaker and panel member I participated in some crypto and privacy events like Luxembourg Zero Knowledge days, ICT Spring, Catapult Africa, Luxembourg Tech School Hackathon pitching, Startup events at Luxembourg TechnoPort, Luxembourg University FinTech events, and at some non-profit organisations.
Do you have past experience managing communities or creating content to be distributed across social media? Please enter details for all with which you are comfortable or have experience:
  • Instructional video content: I organised a blockchain Hackathon with +80 developers, 48 hours delivery time, prestaging/screening, panel, post event, communication (the full monty). I have organised an event that explained to an audience of 100 people Quantum Computing and the combinatorial impact of Quantum+AI+blockchain.
  • Other forum management: I organised a blockchain Hackathon with +80 developers, 48 hours delivery time, pre-staging/screening, panel, post event, communication (the full monty). I have organised an event that explained to an audience of 100 people Quantum Computing and the combinatorial impact of Quantum+AI+blockchain.
  • Meetup group management
  • Other: Potentially, I might be able to help rolling out the client to a magnitude of new users.
As part of growing the xx network community, are you willing to create content as part of operating an xx network BetaNet node? How much content on a monthly basis? Yes, potentially.
Would you be interested in helping to lead the development of the next xx network community? Yes
Why do you want to run a node in the xx network
  • To protect the privacy of political speech
  • To protect private personal communication around health and lifestyle issues from mass surveillance and abuse by centralized organizations
  • To promote quantum secure distributed systems
  • To earn xx coins
  • To help build David Chaum's vision of a decentralized world
  • To contribute to a promising project
  • To undo the centralization of the internet by big tech companies
  • To help build true digital cash to fuel a decentralized economy
What is the difference between decentralized networks and distributed networks, and where on the decentralization spectrum do you sit? In simple terms, decentralised networks are not controlled by a single entity, whereas distributed networks can be controlled by a single or few entities. More correctly speaking, we can distinguish at least 3 forms/levels of (de)centralisation: political (de) centralization- how many individuals/organizations control the computers the network/system is made of,architectural (de) centralization - how many computers is the network made of? How many computers does network need to fail safe?, logical (de) centralization - is easiest to explain with examples. On the centralized side: companies are a good example, with a CEO and a cenralized legal entity. Civil Law relies on one centralized law making body. Whereas on the decentralised side, we have Language, which does not need a central body to make it work, or that people would understand each other when speaking the same language - it just works, autonomously (because of decentralised autonomous processing in everybody’s brain). Common Law is precedent based and where many individual judges build this body of knowledge in a decentralised way. I believe that decentralisation is the way forward, for many reasons, not simply to devide (and conquer) away too much power from centralized entities (like Tech giants, or `Wanting to be Tech giants` with the wrong: Web2 business model that is based on user data exploitation (without reward) and user attention grabbing), but to ensure that the algorithms and networks which (already today) are running the wold are in safe hands, controlled by a democratised system via the wisdom of the crowd approach (which is less easy to corrupt than a centralized, or oligarchic system), as long as incentives are correctly aligned for the large majority of the systems stakeholders. Besides, those truely decentralized systems are much more secure and incorruptible, as a large part of its security is enforced through incentive alignment (crypto economics). Decentralized networks, and realignment of incentives hold also the solution to humanities most pressing problems like climate change and loss of biodiversity. The decentralised networks, with decentralised governance and DAOs hold the potential for mass coordination of humanity to tackle and solve those problems, which stem from problems in misalignment of incentives, bad planning (not well coordinated), human error. With truely decentralized, censorship resistant systems we do not only have the chance to make the Internet truly open again, and stimulate massive innovation, but also to solve those problems which in essence are Tragedy of the Commons problems due to lack of incentive alignment in the current system. Even though I only speak for myself here and personally do share the decentralised vision, I am also aware of Roy Amara`s law. Therefore I believe it will take some time, not so much for the technology, but mindset, society and law to change and adapt, whilst the latter being a representation of society that is sticky, which only changes slowly. On the other hand if one looks back 5 years, what Ethereum has achieved, or 10 years back - what Bitcoin and the entire crypto ecosystem has achieved, it is all truly amazing and fast in such a short timeframe. To wrap it up, what I believe is that decentralized systems, decentralised protocols, decentralised governance, and decentralised entities will co-exist in the foreseeable future, next to centralized entities - until the large majority of humanity is involved, incentivised and actively part of a truely decentralised system. Potentially I might help to bring mass adoption (in the form of `killer app`) to XX network (let me explain in a call).
As best as you can given currently available information, please describe the value proposition of the xx network platform and how it differs from other current blockchain solutions. The XX network allows for full private communication using data mixing. XX network has a built in secure messaging system which allows to send funds, cross border directly between participants. The network has on chain governance built in – to decide on code and core data updates – hence on chain governance. What is different to other chains is the mechanism how voting is done, which is by sample voting which randomly polls a subset of voting population. This is unique, so far in the crypto ecosystem. Furthermore XX Network uses mixing, which is a form of traffic obfuscation, or random data injection, so that an eavesdropper cannot tap into the traffic in transit. For example in the TOR network, the exit and entry nodes, are the most vulnerable nodes where apparently traffic relay attacks have demonstratively happened, indicating that the network is not secure. But okay, TOR is old and its security is not crypto economically incentivised, nor does it have strong mixing capabilities (as far as I know, of the top of my head). The Orchid Protocol (decentralised VPN, with crypto economics), or Nym protocol probably get closer. There is also Loki (with a secure messaging app), and Mimble Wimple implementations like Grin, Grim, Grimm, and DeFis. To my knowledge, the difference with XX network is they are not Quantum resistant. DeFis probably will scale sufficiently well, at least that is what the project claims. In terms of consensus algorithm, the XX network uses a random number generator function, which determines the next set of block producers. In essence, it is not only a security measure to prevent malicious nodes from colluding, but it solves also the scalability issue which comes from serial vs. parallel processing that is usually associated with (second generation) blockchains, at Layer 1. From a helicopter view, Dfinity seems to have a similar function which randomly sets the next set of block producers. Algorand has also a function or rather a 8 step process, which specifies which block producers become active, randomly for the same reasons as described before. Solana solves the scalability problem in a different way, not requiring sharding at Layer 1 (which is unique so far), but using a verifiable time delay function (and specialised hardware). So, both Dfinity and Solana nodes require to run their nodes to a specified hardware spec, which arguably comes down to political/architectual centralisation (to a certain extent). From a decentralization perspective, it is a much harder engineering challenge to run on non-standardized hardware, yet it goes more node operators the possibility to run a node. Consequently the latter, achieves more/decentralization, resulting in a higher network security (theoretically speaking, at least). The same can be said about Bitcoins PoW algorithm, to be economically competitive and to be able to answer to the networks highest hash rate in its history, miners need to run the latest generation of ASIC miners. There are several examples where decentralisation of Bitcoin has become questionable, such as a famous picture of 2016, where at a Bitcoin conference all Chinese Bitcoin miners were together on one panel. Why is the network still secure though, also with all this pooling? Well, it is because Bitcoin a social contract (like gold), and the miners know that a `history rewind` or hard fork of the Bitcoin network would only bring economic damage to them (in that sense their incentives are correctly aligned). A successful attack on the Bitcoin network protocol itself (not off chain, exchanges, wallets etc) is one that is slow and stealth, which then is probably not worth it, as there are more lower hanging fruits (off chain, Exchanges and so on..). Another example for the economic security of Bitcoin is when CZ from Binance announced over Twitter that him and his mining buddies are thinking of rewinding the chain, ofter the attack on Binance in 2019. Again, the value from Bitcoins social contract made him later withdraw that idea.In summary, to my knowledge there is currently no Layer 1 chain available that is quantum resistant, scalable without the need to do sharding which has confidentiality baked in at Layer 1. There are Layer 2 solutions on the horizon with ZK rollup, for example Aztec protocol. Or even Layer 1 (Oasis Protocol, with OASISETH.ORG bridge to Ethereum). However Oasis runs at this stage (Testnet) on trusted enclave technology (Intel SGX), which is not only proprietary, but has known vulnerabilities and is hence not suitable for some use cases (security of the underlying principle, basically). Nevertheless, Dawn Song and Oasis Labs claim to have a scalable system which privacy protects the content of the smart contract (whilst keeping it verifiable), with confidential balance and confidential transactions. Next to scalability, all three before mentioned parameters are essential for DeFi to be a true alternative to traditional, centralized finance (the legacy system). Dfinity, even though the team has also well recognised cryptographers on their team, such as Jens Grothe, will not have a confidentiality solution before two years (Sodium test-net launch recently).
Privacy by Default is a goal of the xx network Platform. In your opinion, why is Privacy by Default critical for the future of the internet? Web2 has shown how the business models of Tech Giants can harm society (see November 2016). There are endless examples of data breaches, due to centralized data processing. I am a big supporter of Web3. Nothing is for free, and nothing should be. The data users provide, users should be paid for. If Web3 does not succeed, this means that tech giants will continue to not only acquire unproportunate wealth, influence and power, but the data will simply be siloed up in those companies, allowing those companies to define and dictate what the future looks like. This is not only non-democratic, there is also a significant risk that humanity does not solve its most pressing problems and goals (see UN Sustainable Development Goals). This is because monopolies harm innovation, as innovative and start-up like those incumbents may operate or run their business. This becomes particular crucial with the wider use of AI and soon Quantum Computing. The stratitic advantage already today those Tech Giants have over their competition, in a wide variety of sectors, is purely mindblowing. However the production and usage of data is exponential. Whereas start-ups have amazing algorithms, they cannot train and run them as efficiently as the Tech Giant competitor could, which is unproportunate. Btw, the Ocean Protocol (set of smart contracts on Ethereum mainnet), tries to solve this by creating a marketplace for data providers and algorithm developers and companies. Democratizing the power of AI, whilst reversing the privacy of the underlying data. Even though EU GDPR regulation, as well as regulations that followed around the globe (California Consumer Privacy Act) go in the right direction; regulation is not sufficient. This is because, it is not a real preventive control - whereas a protocol like the XX network is a technology, which acts like a security enforcement module, hence this technology is a true preventive control and therefore 100x better a regulation. Besides large tech giants follow a strict risk/reward based approach, meaning that even though the regulator may make `good money` with a breach, for a Tech Giant it may still pay off to breach the law/regulation, as demonstrated in the past.
In your opinion, what threat, if any, do quantum computers pose toward decentralized systems? What about centralized systems? Besides the obvious, which is that all elliptic curve based algorithms and respective protocols, hence the Internet would be broken – let`s look at it from a crypto economics perspective. Quantum computers are currently being run (e.g. DWave, Google, MSoft), from centralized locations. As far as I know, so will they in the future, as the underlying quantum physics require so - to stabalize the environment to be able to `measure` the Qbits in a nitrogen cooled, shock resistant, special environment. Besides, quantum computers are considerably expensive. Commercially offered quantum computing of scale would most likely be based on processor cycle/time sharing then actually owning the hardware - or some Quantum As a Service type model. Therefore an attack from a Quantum computer would probably come from a centralized location/infratructure, rather than a decentralized quantum infrastructure - in the future. Decentralized networks are much harder to upgrade, as not only do they require a social consensus to do so, not only the whole dilemma that goes with forking vs on-chain governance and upgradeability, but it requires also a much larger migration path, wider scope of testing, much more coordination and communication and so on, as the upgrade to ETH 2.0 demonstrates quite well. On the other hand, a centralized system has those arguments but in the opposite, more positive direction. In terms of crypto economics and traditional financial economics and a potential Quantum attack, this is not so straight forward to answer. In both cases, there would be a lack of trust and lack of confidence - depending on a series of factors, response, response time, impact, incident handing, communication, transparency and so on. The decentralized system is technically speaking more resilient, whereas a central bank would simply need to correct its `SQL database` with `insert` in other words`print more money`. Note, this is in reality much more complex (it is described here in a joking way). FIAT finance, being a centralized yet distributed system, it could be argued that, unless the attacker directs the attack towards the Central Bank, it would be more effort for him/her (than attacking a decentralized network where all nodes speak the same language and have the same accounting) since he/she would have to compromise many different, independent accounting systems, which does not scale so well in terms of attack impact. Okay, he should also attack `pipes` or `middle wear` like the SWIFT network, CHAPS, TARGET 2, and other Real Time Gross Settlement Systems, with more impact. The impact of a quantum attack on a decentralised network, in terms of crypto economics is overrated, in my opinion. Or at least, as with any cyber attack it depends on what’s at stake. The more economic value there is, the more attractive it is for the attacker. If the attack is for profit. However a slow/stealth attack seems more sensitive in this context. On the other hand, if the attack is not for profit, but to shut down or rather economically ruin a given network (repetitional risk), then some state actors and interest groups may be motivated to do so in a big bang, quantum based attack. More concretely, with regard to the Bitcoin network, there are now several studies which indicate that Bitcoin ASIC would still outperform a quantum computer, in terms of brute force hash rate attack, key management is key (basically so that individual addresses are safe against quantum attacks, one should use a key-pair only once (regenerate for each transaction a new key-pair). This is super cumbersome and quite unpractical on the current BTC network. This may be doable as a private user and self custody (true, crypto is all about being ones own bank), however when it comes to crypto custody services for corporates and institutions, even for CeFI, exchanges and so on - this is a massive problem and a real threat to that given crypto network. Note that Algorand recently announced, the possibility to be able to re-key (on the fly) every public address on the network, with a new private key, whenever required. This solves the aforementioned problem). If BTC was under a quantum attack, I believe that even with all the previous forking dramas, the community would come to senses, act in a coordinated way and patch/upgrade where needed. There is an example for this outstanding security vulnerability handing and coordination. There was a vulnerability in BTC in 2018 or 2019 (can’t remember exactly), where all miners upgraded the code due to an announced serious vulnerability. However at the same time, and with that code, a much more critical (double spend) vulnerability was fixed, which was not announced to the community, nor to the miners. Lastly, a quantum attack on a major crypto network, would have massive negative spill over effects throughout the entire crypto ecosystem, as almost everything - at the least the crypto markets -are heavily correlated. Apologies for this application being rather heavy and long. I hope it has been useful. I am very excited and looking very much forward to becoming an XX network Betanet Node operator. All opinions my own, as usual ;-)
1 Like

I usually complain that the application is very “thin”…well, this is the most comprehensive one I’ve seen :wink:
You have my support. Good luck!

Thank you TGV!

You got my support very good application

Wow the detail app I’ve seen…good job! Has my vote+++

Perfect! Thank you guys.

Quite the application…its as yes for me!