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Mike Hearn
Works at Google
Attended Durham University
Lives in Zurich, Switzerland
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Introduction
I fix things when they break, and break things when they're fixed.
Education
  • Durham University
    Computer Science
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Male
Birthday
April 17
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Single
Work
Occupation
Software Engineer
Employment
  • Google
    Engineer, 2006 - present
  • CodeWeavers
  • QinetiQ
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Currently
Zurich, Switzerland
Previously
Manchester, England
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Mike Hearn

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For people who follow me for Bitcoin stuff.
 
Some new features in recent bitcoinj master:

- Kosta Korenkov (@troggy on github) has implemented the first part of married wallets support. You can now marry a wallet to a third party HD tree e.g. on a remote server and that wallet will start vending multi-sig P2SH addresses. Currently if you do this, you'll have to sign transactions yourself (this is quite easy). Hopefully in future bitcoinj will have a plugin system so different risk analysis providers can be presented with a uniform interface.

- WalletTemplate now shows how to implement online restore from seed words, with real-time validation as you type.

- Old random wallets are upgraded to HD wallets on the fly, using the oldest private key in the old wallet as the seed. This means the upgrade to HD should be seamless for our existing user base.

- Andreas implemented decryption of BIP38 encrypted private keys, as part of work he's doing on supporting paper wallets in Bitcoin Wallet for Android.
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Mike Hearn

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"Over a six-month period the National Crime Agency alone estimates that it has had to drop at least 20 cases as a result of missing communications data," she said in a speech on Tuesday. "Thirteen of these were threat-to-life cases in which a child was assessed to be at risk of imminent harm."

...

"The real problem is not that we have built an over-mighty state but that the state is finding it harder to fulfil its most basic duty, which is to protect the public. I know some people like the thought that the internet should become a libertarian paradise, but that will entail complete freedom not just for law-abiding people but for terrorists and criminals. I do not believe that is what the public wants."

Well, at least she doesn't beat around the bush ...
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Complete , including "think of the children". It's so obviously manipulative I hope it has the opposite effect to the intended one.
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Finally! Very exciting to see parts of the SCIPR-Lab code be open sourced, even though it's incomplete: TinyRAM and the associated cleverness like the Beneš network builder are all missing. 

Although it'd be nice to have all of it, realistically zero knowledge proofs for arbitrary C programs are so technically complicated that it'd be years before we can incorporate it into a "real" app, as the industry needs to build a base of people who understand, trust and can work with the algorithms. It'll take a while to get to grips with what's in libsnark, even though it's still very limited - this version of the code requires you to lay out your circuits manually.
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No, not yet.
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Mike Hearn

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Taiwanese receipts double up as lottery tickets, thus incentivising regular citizens to act as tax collectors. After the Kuomingtang government introduced the scheme in 1951, receipts went up 75%.

The lottery scheme is partly about efficiency (it's too much work to pay people for submitting receipts) and partly about gamification: it's more fun to take part in a lottery than receive micropayments for microwork.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uniform_Invoice_lottery
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Cleverly perverse.
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I think such attacks would be much harder outside the USA. In Switzerland you see the name of the account holder you're sending to for domestic payments and have to confirm with a second factor. That doesn't work for international payments but hopefully being asked to make a cross border payment for a housing purchase would be suspicious.
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How the bitcoin protocol can be used to improve crowdfunding, assurance contracts, and solve problems in game theory.
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Looking forward to reading this.
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Thanks Olivier!
Welcome to the first update about Vinumeris and the Lighthouse project, and thanks for reading this blog - your interest is both hugely appreciated and tremendously motivating. About six weeks ago ...
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Open sourcing by end of August. Not sue if it'll also be in a state that's good enough to provide end user downloads by then.
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Mike Hearn

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I was interviewed for the Epicenter Bitcoin podcast - it's long but we covered a lot of ground, including what's going on with Lighthouse, assurance contracts, core development, floating fees, Tor, bitcoinj and many other techie topics. 

https://epicenterbitcoin.com/eb-025/
Today our guest is Mike Hearn who many of you are familiar with. He’s one of the first Bitcoin users and the developer of BitcoinJ, a Java library used by a number of popular Bitcoin wallets such as the Android wallet, Multibit and Hive. Until recently he was working at Google and is now working …
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Something that bothered me for a while now is how western media outlets report routinely report things as being posted to "a jihadist website" without providing any kind of link so people can visit the primary source for themselves. Surely being able to visit them is not such a big deal? Why are no links ever provided? Paranoid moment: do these websites actually exist, or is this some kind of clever propaganda? Assuming it does exist, what else might be found there? Discussion forums? Jihadist wallpapers and ringtones?

This cropped up again recently when I saw this story:

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/jun/13/iraqi-shia-fights-samarra-shrines-insurgents

The image caption is "An image from the jihadist website Wilayat Salahuddin allegedly shows Isis militants on the streets of Samarra, Iraq. Photograph: Wilayat Salahuddin/AFP/Getty Images"

So I decided to try and find Wilayat Salahuddin. To save time in case anyone else tries this: no such website exists. But the cause is not an X-Files type conspiracy; just plain old garbling by the press.

Firstly, don't try and find this website via Google. The "jihadist website" the Guardian refers to is in fact this now suspended Twitter account:

http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:https://twitter.com/w_salahadden&ion=1&espv=2

Google cache still has the last few tweets which were links to gulfup.com, an Arab file/image hosting site. That's where these photos came from. Presumably "Jihadist Twitter account" doesn't sound scary enough. Twitter dumped it down the memory hole; there's now no way to see what it posted before. So I still don't know what jihadist websites contain when they're not posting horrible photos of recent events.

What does Wilayat Sallahudin mean anyway? Does it mean "Death to westerners" in Arabic? No, this is simply a translation of "Sallahudin province", i.e. just the name of where the events took place:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wilayah
https://www.google.ch/#q=salahuddin+province+iraq&qscrl=1&safe=off

I understand why the Guardian wouldn't want to post dead links and why Twitter wouldn't want to host this sort of stuff, but given that these photos have been widely redistributed and can't be removed now I think Twitter and news outlets should do us all a favour and just let us verify the sources directly.
Convoys of Shia fighters assemble to protect shrines after official Iraqi forces abandon positions
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You can always search for the photo if you want to follow it back.  The guardian received the picture from photo agencies (note it is attributed by the Guardian to AFP and Getty as well as Wilayat Salahuddin).  AFP use the same "Wilayat Salahuddin" labelling to index other photos, and they make clear they obtained other photos from a website with that name. http://blogs.afp.com/correspondent/?post/What-to-do-with-horrific-images-from-Iraq
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Taiwan
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That's Jiufen right? I was there last year in September. One of the most magical small towns I've seen. Did you have some tea at one the tea house? :)
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At Bitcoin 2014 I gave a talk where I announced what I'm doing post-Google. I hope the video is available soon, but until it is, you can read more here!
About a year and a half ago I gave a talk in London titled "The future of Bitcoin and rebuilding the financial system". Although there were only about a hundred or so people in the room, that talk ...
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Hi Mike, I just sent you an email titled "Lighthouse + ....". The information contained in it should help the project :). Thanks again for all your amazing work in the space.
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Mike Hearn

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I wrote an article about stealth addresses and the payment protocol. 

It introduces the recent stealth address proposal, then discusses how to solve some of the problems with the proposed design by integrating it with the new Bitcoin payment protocol. The outcome should be a system where you can add people to your wallet's address book, and make payments to them, all without leaking private data onto the block chain.
… or, how to solve the problems of stealth addresses
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A fantastic location right opposite a beautiful park. The guide books are free and the receptionist was very helpful.
Quality: ExcellentFacilities: ExcellentService: Excellent
Public - a year ago
reviewed a year ago
Public - 2 years ago
reviewed 2 years ago
We had to wait a long time for our food, and the waitress forgot to bring various things we ordered and had to be reminded several times. However, when the food came, it was pretty good - the portions were exactly the right size, and it tasted great. The tables have wooden benches that make it easy to squeeze more people on, so it's a good place to go if you aren't sure how big your group will be.
Public - 5 years ago
reviewed 5 years ago
5 reviews
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Simple and straightforward, Sams is one of the few places that serves deep dish pizza. If you like American style pizza, give it a try. Most pizzas are around 25 chf, though they serve other food too.
Public - 4 years ago
reviewed 4 years ago
Food-wise, the pizzas and subs they sell aren't the greatest ever - but the staff are cheerful, the decor is nice, and most importantly they are open practically all the time. No closing at 7pm for these guys! They provide newspapers for people to read, TV to watch, and also sell subs and fajitas. Be warned though, they only take cash - visit the cash machine just down the road (towards Bahnhof Weidikon) if you are short first.
Public - 6 years ago
reviewed 6 years ago