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mathematicians: "haha, look at this -- based on what we know about math right now, there's no way to make certain operations easily reversible."
computer nerds: "cool, we can use this to encrypt data in transit."
mathematicians: "nice. Though don't bet on it always being hard. I mean, we solve hard problems all the time, haha."
cryptocoin nerds: "In fact, we're going to bet trillions of dollars on it remaining hard forever."

@rysiek @monsieuricon cuz only cryptocoins depend (financially) heavily on cryptography being unbreakable...

@tomosaigon @rysiek if RSA is broken tomorrow, it's going to be painful, but straightforward for everyone using TLS to move to quantum-resistant protocols. All previously captured transactions will be suspect for sure, but very few entities in the world would be in a position to decrypt them.

Blockchains, on the other hand, depend entirely on the chosen PKI algorithm to remain unbroken, otherwise any transaction on the chain can be faked.

@tomosaigon @rysiek so, if your use of blockchains is transactional in nature, you're fine. If you're using it to store long-term assets, then those assets are only as good the PKI algo used by that chain.

@monsieuricon @tomosaigon @rysiek
At least now you'll have a chance to learn when someone breaks RSA^W ECDSA.
If there weren't trillions on dollars sitting on it, whoever broke ECDSA would likely keep it to themselves, silently and very selectively faking signatures or MITMing their targets.

@wolf480pl @tomosaigon @rysiek Indeed, Satoshi's dead bitcoins are our best canary in the mine for when ECDSA is broken. :)

@monsieuricon I agree, a blockchain depends on certain algorithms today to decide if you can spend a utxo. By following best practices (single use addresses that are hashed), if ecdsa is suspected by majority hashrate of being compromised, I believe it only takes s soft fork to change to a different algorithm thus solving the problem. It'll probably happen anyways eventually (upgrading), bitcoin software is a living thing. A bunch of Satoshi's coins will probably still be up for grabs. @rysiek

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