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Author Topic: Diary of a Sceptic  (Read 2657 times)

kwilliams

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Diary of a Sceptic
« on: February 16, 2015, 10:10:59 pm »

I’ve been a long time SuperNET sceptic, but finally decided to switch my home wallet from NRS to SuperNET. Goals:
a)   Toying with features, see if there’s anything for me.
b)   See what the hassles are

I ran it briefly a month ago as "end user", but now will be trying it in "server mode" (up 24/7, accessible from a number of machines - home network and EC2). What prompted me was the BTER mess.  I need a way of moving funds between chains (BTER was good while it lasted and so was GOX, lost money on both). Let's give MGW a chance to fail me too ... stay tuned
« Last Edit: February 16, 2015, 10:26:10 pm by kwilliams »
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kwilliams

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Re: Diary of a Sceptic
« Reply #1 on: February 16, 2015, 10:15:18 pm »

Ok, since I already have a machine configured for NRS with service scripts et all, let's just replace the binaries and see what happens (for a good measure blowing away the lib and database folders first):

sudo service nxt-server stop
rm /mnt/crypto/nxt/lib/*
rm -rf /mnt/crypto/nxt/nxt_db/*

wget https://bitbucket.org/longzai1988/supernet/downloads/supernet-1.4.15.1.zip
unzip -o -d /tmp supernet-1.4.15.1.zip
cp --archive /tmp/supernet-1.4.15.1/. /mnt/crypto/nxt/
rm -rf /tmp/supernet-1.4.15.1
sudo service nxt-server start


Blockchain download seem to be progressing fine. Looking at the SuperNET newsletters, they talk about client V0, V1, etc. Wondering which one this is ?! If they abandon this NRS clone and switch to a new (non- JAVA?) codebase, I will certainly go back to NRS. Also need to find out more about SuperNET backend - am I running it now (or portions of it) ?  ... probably not, this seems more like NRS + SuperNET client

« Last Edit: February 16, 2015, 10:24:41 pm by kwilliams »
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valarmg

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Re: Diary of a Sceptic
« Reply #2 on: February 16, 2015, 10:28:33 pm »

Ok, since I already have a machine configured for NRS with service scripts et all, let's just replace the binaries and see what happens (for a good measure blowing away the lib and database folders first):

sudo service nxt-server stop
rm /mnt/crypto/nxt/lib/*
rm -rf /mnt/crypto/nxt/nxt_db/*

wget https://bitbucket.org/longzai1988/supernet/downloads/supernet-1.4.15.1.zip
unzip -o -d /tmp supernet-1.4.15.1.zip
cp --archive /tmp/supernet-1.4.15.1/. /mnt/crypto/nxt/
rm -rf /tmp/supernet-1.4.15.1
sudo service nxt-server start


Blockchain download seem to be progressing fine. Looking at the SuperNET newsletters, they talk about client V0, V1, etc. Wondering which this one is on the roadmap ?! If they abandon this NRS clone and switch to a new (non- JAVA?) codebase, I will certainly go back to NRS. Also need to discover about the SuperNET backend. What they have baked into the NRS  - is it running any significant backend portions as well or is simply a client ? questions , questions ...

This is v0, and just involves some additional javascript code on the javascript UI to Nxt. As far as I know, the Java portion of Nxt is not changed. v0 means it's not really superNET, just some superNET servcies on top of the Nxt client.

v1 will be something rather different--it will be the real superNET client, hopefully out soon.
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kwilliams

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Re: Diary of a Sceptic
« Reply #3 on: February 16, 2015, 10:32:45 pm »

Ah crap, I like NRS and already used to it. May give V1 (when/if it comes out) the benefit of the doubt, but really not looking forward running yet another wallet. Time will tell.

IMHO the concept of a Browser (HTML) UI is very powerful and I'm not willing to trade it for an "app" experience (yet). Especially an app written in C++ (unless it looks like PVZ :-))
« Last Edit: February 16, 2015, 10:42:23 pm by kwilliams »
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kwilliams

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Re: Diary of a Sceptic
« Reply #4 on: February 17, 2015, 01:07:29 am »

Chain finished downloading. Time to play, first the SN dashboard tile. It says "You are not connecting to any coin QT wallet, some basic coin functionality will be disabled" ... maybe it need access to BTC node?! I have one running (on a separate machine), let's figure how to wire that in ...
Notes:
* Looks like unfinished feature: https://forum.thesupernet.org/index.php?topic=250.0
* May not support BTC wallet, but only wallets that are SuperNET compatible (TBD)
* Here's more proof that you need special wallet: https://nxtforum.org/index.php?topic=6529.msg130158#msg130158 , it however implies that
    a) The wallet needs to be modified for supernet
    b) The wallet must run locally (no access via JSON-RPC !?)

Unlike the dashboard, the MGW tile seems more configurable and there's a tutorial: https://multigateway.org/user-guide/getting-started/ . Generated BTC/MGW deposit address, waiting for 20 blocks ...
Notes
*  Seems like there's a separate "mgwBTC Deposit Address" for each currency pair (see drop down top right)

The third tile is the coinomat. The BTC to NXT conversion seems straightforward. You are persented with exchange rate, asked for BTC amount and presented with QR code to deposit.
Notes:
* The QR code is not BIP70 compliant
* The QR code does not have the amount in it - you have to type it again , which is a pain. I ended up choosing a different amount when prompted by my (Counbase) wallet, looks like asking for the amount was a "convenience" feature ...
* Seems like the QR code pop-up does not go away when transaction posts, however there's a "transaction history" section at the bottom of the page, which does look like auto-update

Next, the coinimal
* You must have a coinimal.com account.
* Creating one is simple (Google login is advertised but does not work)
* This by far is the most professional looking feature! (as expected from a GMBH ... :) ...national bias here ). Unfortunately not useful from the "land of the free", unless you have EU bank account (and ready to be FATCA-ted)

Another nice thing I've noticed is a dividend payment feature. Notes:
* You can pay dividends to assets issued by others - bravo!... allows separation of responsibilities
* Unfortunately, it too suffers from the "Could not verify signature (server side)." problem described in this post: https://nxtforum.org/asset-exchange-general/problems-when-paying-dividents/
« Last Edit: February 17, 2015, 02:26:16 am by kwilliams »
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kwilliams

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Re: Diary of a Sceptic
« Reply #5 on: February 17, 2015, 02:36:59 am »

Conclusions:
* Coinomat seems to be the most useful feature for me at this point. Replaces BTER fairly well
* In the course of toying with above features, received a (NXT) Public Message from NXT-3TKA-UH62-478B-DQU6K with content "94c8f2733b000000adb8460407afeec1670000000000000000000000010000007b22425443223a22227d". Looks like a communication mechanism of some sort (for one of the integrations)
* SuperNET in general is not worthless, and seems to be evolving in a direction. Let's see how long this lasts.
* I can now see why they may want to move away from NRS codebase and develop their own client. One could only hope it will be HTML based (unlikely)
* All things considered I see SuperNET's architecture becoming close to Ripple's with at least two distinct projects - client and server (unlike bitcoin).
* Adopting C++ for ether will bog them down eventually, unless they gather critical mass (comparable to Apache foundation for example). On the other hand there's not much choice, as most crypto's are currently written in C, and they'll need to maximize code reuse.
« Last Edit: February 17, 2015, 02:42:07 am by kwilliams »
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jl777

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Re: Diary of a Sceptic
« Reply #6 on: February 17, 2015, 02:53:04 am »

Conclusions:
* Coinomat seems to be the most useful feature for me at this point. Replaces BTER fairly well
* In the course of toying with above features, received a (NXT) Public Message from NXT-3TKA-UH62-478B-DQU6K with content "94c8f2733b000000adb8460407afeec1670000000000000000000000010000007b22425443223a22227d". Looks like a communication mechanism of some sort (for one of the integrations)
* SuperNET in general is not worthless, and seems to be evolving in a direction. Let's see how long this lasts.
* I can now see why they may want to move away from NRS codebase and develop their own client. One could only hope it will be HTML based (unlikely)
* All things considered I see SuperNET's architecture becoming close to Ripple's with at least two distinct projects - client and server (unlike bitcoin).
* Adopting C++ for ether will bog them down eventually, unless they gather critical mass (comparable to Apache foundation for example). On the other hand there's not much choice, as most crypto's are currently written in C, and they'll need to maximize code reuse.
you are using the v0 GUI, the v1 GUI is pure HTML, not sure why you feel this is unlikely...

I am making the SuperNET codebase extensible, so any language (within reason) can be used to create new API. Then an HTML GUI can use such API extensions. Up to 60,000 lines of new C code so far, I think the bottleneck is more getting enough GUI done for all the APIs. I think we are up to around 70 API calls already and that's just from me

Now there are some functions that are unique to things like the MGW servers, but these are actually just a specific instance of the standard SuperNET node. They are on a privatesupernet with a SOFTWALL (software blocks any comms not from nodes on the whitelist) and so all contact to the MGW servers are via the hardened bridge node. Now setting up a bridge node is a matter of putting the same SuperNET executable in the html directory so that the php can start it with a command line, that is the JSON string passed in by the HTML GUI. Since the bridge node is only needed to automatically initialize a new account (with the pubkey and a few NXT) the reliance on a single one is ok for now, but it is designed so that N of these bridge nodes can be setup easily and then we can make a DNS rotator to randomly pick a bridge node.

So the SuperNET is able to change what it does via the few dozen SuperNET.conf settings and how it is invoked. If you invoke it with a JSON commandline, it operates in a "cli" mode and just does a few special API commands. You can configure it to generate ramchains or get it remotely. The latter is not fully debugged, so I made a few public rsync servers that let you get a recent ramchain in about 20 seconds for BTCD.

Not sure about your ripple comparison... SuperNET is not any single coin and not any single language.

James

P.S. there are over a dozen SuperNET projects now, most will split their functionality into "client" HTML and "server" API backed parts.
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kwilliams

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Re: Diary of a Sceptic
« Reply #7 on: February 17, 2015, 06:22:35 am »

James, thanks for the reply.

V1 client being HTML is exciting, means I will give it a try when it comes out.

I wonder if client talks to a single SuperNET host (with internal plugin architecture) or to a federated network of hosts (each providing some distinct functionality)?

Finally, NeoDICE works well and it's fun to play. Recomendations:
* Betting screen should have "min" and "max" bet size links to quickly set the bet size based on current chip balance. It should also have "/2" and "x2" to double or half the current bet. Most people play martingale strategies and the ability to easily double or half the bet (in a single click) would be nice.
* The cash out screen should have "all" link to quickly set cash out amount to match all available funds (chips), again without having to type.
* The game could promote it's shares, aka "like this game? - become a shareholder"
« Last Edit: February 17, 2015, 06:36:43 am by kwilliams »
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kwilliams

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Re: Diary of a Sceptic
« Reply #8 on: March 01, 2015, 08:54:01 pm »

Update:
* Few days down the road, I continue to use multi-gateway (MGW). The rest of the apps faded out for me, don't seem to find good use cases for them.
* MGW deposits (BTC) take arbitrary times between 20 minutes and 20 hours. Seen people complain of perpetually stuck deposits. Personally did not have such problem so far
* Using some SuperNET apps results of me receiving AM full of gibberish. I've opened a proposal for creating a mechanism for keeping suck messages out of sight: https://nxtforum.org/arbitrary-messages/add-new-%27automated-message%27-flag-to-messages/
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