Monday, 30 March 2015

Move Or Die Review

Hey Guys,

A few days ago, I bought a game called Move or Die on steam. I have been following this game for a while lately, but have finally decided to buy the full game, as I couldn't wait for it to come out of early access. The game is made by Those Awesome Guys (or TAG).

It is a 2D arcade-style game, built on the principal that if you don't move, you die. The game is very fast paced, and very fun to play. There are game modes, the newest being Sugar Rush; a race to get the candy first, ranging to Stomp, having to stamp on others.


You are encourage to modify the game, after all, it's initials are MoD! I made some changes to the speed of characters to make the AI bots really bad, as they are not programmed that way and otherwise are really hard to beat. I also changed some of the textures of the characters, making them look  different.

Move or Die uses Bit Bucket to host it's game (although the repository is private) so bug reporting is an easy process. I have reported a couple of bugs already, as it is in early access. Me and my friends have had a great time battling to be the best at Move or Die, and I hope you will too! I highly recommend this game to all ages.

Move or Die website:

Picture from MoD's Steam site

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Friday, 20 March 2015

How Bitcoin Works

Hey guys!

I said that I'd write a post about how Bitcoin works, so here it is.

To be able to store Bitcoin, you need to create a wallet. There are many wallets to choose from, and I chose Coinbase's online wallet, as you never have to deal with keeping your keys safe. So, there are 2 keys that get generated when you create a wallet. The public key and the private one. The public key can be told to anyone, as it deals with incoming transactions, and there's no point not letting people be able to pay you. The other one should not be told to anyone, as it deals with outgoing transactions, so you don't want people knowing that, as then they could take your Bitcoins (not a good thing!)

The Block Chain

When you make a transaction, it's data is added to the block chain. The block chain is a big list of all the transactions ever made, all added into one string of data. After this, bitcoin miners start mining, hashing the transactions made in different combinations, looking for a certain combination that starts with a load of zeros. If a miner finds a combination like this, then the block is ended and all the transactions start flowing onto the block after this. With this happening, it means that every transaction ever made is woven into the block chain. The only way to hack this would be to own more than 50% of the whole bitcoin network's hashrate, so that they could change some transactions and re-hash and catch up everyone else's real hashing. If the network is 50 or more % faster, then if anyone tried to edit the block chain they would get left behind by everyone else. At one point a bitcoin pool reached 40% of the network's hasrate, but they put a limit on, as they foresaw that if they ever reached 51% then everyone would lose their trust in bitcoin, leading to a crash in bitcoin prices.

Hopefully this has improved your understanding of how bitcoin works.

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Monday, 16 March 2015

Bitcoin Affiliate Network Potential DDoS

Hey Guys!

Today I received an email from Bitcoin Affiliate Network - the mining pool that I mine for - saying that they have had an email from some hackers, stating that they have been notified by hackers with a DDoS attack threat A DDoS (Distributed Denial of Service) attack is where hackers send a volley of computers to connect to their network, taking their network down. The hackers often ask for a ransom to stop their attacks, so that they can get money for their work. here is the E-Mail sent from Bitcoin Affiliate Network:

There's an incoming DDOS attack today. I received an extortion request yesterday.
They're claiming to be able to take down all the servers... The threat is credible as they've already taken down many big pools.

you are receiving this email because you're currently mining in the pool.

If you're in Europe or Asia switch to this private stratum node: (I've left this bit out, maybe i shouldn't tell you - it's not my server to publish the IP of!)

You may also use 3334, or 3335 if you wish.

I'm currently setting up a private server in the USA.

I took steps yesterday to protect the main web site... which I'm confident will work. We're on a new ip network behind ddos protection. There's just not much I can do about the public stratum nodes.
I don't have full control over most of them.

You can keep mining where your'e at right now... perhaps use the private pool as backup... if it's further from your location.

I will write soon with the US one...

-Gil (s0br)

p.s. This new server isn't public, new, and not known to the attackers. They will keep your mining safe and unaffected.

Email below....


To introduce ourselves first:

Or just google “DD4BC† and you will find more info.

Recently, we were DDoS-ing, bitminter and other pools - you probably know for it if you read cryptocurrency news.

So, it’s your turn.

Unless you pay 10 BTC to 1LHPpEdxWvhQip3KqdRd9jgBuYHSGUB7Zp within 12 hours from now, your pool servers are going under heavy DDoS attack.

Pay, and you will never hear from us again.

Usually, we attack first, then ask BTC to stop, but since your pool is too big, one of the largest Bitcoin pools, we are giving you time to act first, because we are well aware that even 1 hour offline would cause much larger damage then 10 BTC.

12 hours, because we are not in the same time zone and it’s morning in china, so we want to make sure that you had time to act.

AS PROOF that this is not an empty threat, we will run a small attack on on your server now – Don’t worry it’s not going to be hard and will run for just 1 hour, so your server will not get null routed.
But if not paid, all your servers are going down for good.

Please note that it will not be easy to mitigate our attack, because our current UDP flood power is 400-500 Gbps.

IMPORTANT: You don’t even have to reply. Just pay 10 BTC to 1LHPpEdxWvhQip3KqdRd9jgBuYHSGUB7Zp – we will know it’s you and you will never hear from us again.

But if you ignore us, attack will start and price to stop will go to 20 BTC and will keep going up for every day of delay.

ONE MORE TIME: It’s a one-time payment. Pay and you will not hear from us ever again!

Thank you.

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Bitcoin Mining!

Hey guys!

Lately, I have been researching Bitcoin. Bitcoin is a cyber currency, which is  currency with no physical form. One Bitcoin is worth about £170 ($250). There are two ways that you can acquire Bitcoins, either a) buying them from a trader or b) mining them yourself. I went down the route of mining and here's how i did it:


Mining is how bitcoins are found - you set a computer or ASIC (Application Specific Integrated Circuit) up to constantly do the same set of sums, just with different numbers, and occasionally it will find a block (a group of 25 bitcoins). It is possible to mine either on your own, or in a bitcoin "pool". A pool is a group of people working together to mine bitcoins, and when a block is found, they divide the winnings up, dependent on their hashrate (The speed at which your device can do sums).

So first, i needed to set up a wallet. a wallet is the program that you can connect to, stored on your computer in the web, or other outside sources. I chose Coinbase, as it is very popular, but also is web-based, so even if your computer gets hacked or stolen, your money is still safe. I was a bit worried, as it asked for ID, but it is because, technically, your'e opening a bank account, so they need to make sure your'e you. 

I then had to decide, solo or pool mining? I decided pool, as solo mining is a) very hard to set up and b) extremely unlikely that you'll find any bitcoins. I chose to go with Bitcoin Affiliate Network, as they have 0%PPS (For every block found, they take none of the bitcoins, giving them all away) They also have a very high hashrate (~4Ph/S) So they pay out frequently, but you only get a small percentage of the money.

I found out, after creating an account with BAN, that they only accepted ASIC miners. I was a bit stuck, but then received one from a friend to borrow. It is only a USB Block erupter, providing only 1 Gh/S, but it is something to try. I st it up, the drivers were fairly quick to install, and then had to get my mining software. I used bfgMiner on my computer, as it was fairly simple to install, and then created a quick batch file to start up the miner. This is the bfgminer console:

I have been getting a strange "saw-tooth" pattern in my hashing power>>>

I calculated that with this miner, it would take 100 days to even make enough bitcoins for it to even PAY OUT! (0.0002 btc - approx. 4p (6 cents) )
This miner showed an average of about 1Gh/S, but i still had to have my computer on, that drew a lot of power, being very inefficient. That's that for this post, but I will be posting another post about the workings of Bitcoin, such as the block chain and how transactions work.

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Sunday, 1 March 2015

Lenovo Superfish

Hey guys!

You may have heard of the discovery of the use of Superfish, a program that comes with Lenovo laptops. The role of this software has recently been discovered, it being to replace adverts on websites with Lenovo's ones, therefore Lenovo getting paid for these ads, instead of the owner of the website receiving the money. This is a real shame, as Lenovo laptops are actually excellent hardware - wise, but this makes a big difference. Apparently, this was the only way Lenovo were making profit, as the demand of people nowadays is to have the price so low - they couldn't make any money out of the actual hardware, so this was the only way they could make any money. It is unlikely that anyone will buy many more Lenovo laptops - this will be not only a lesson to Lenovo but the whole computer hardware industry, forcing them to see the effects of having this kind of software shipped with the computer.

Make sure to keep checking here to see the latest tech news!