Simon Cowell: It's a 'no' from me.

uHive Revisited (and Some Crypto Scams or Otherwise Sus Projects)

"This fake crypto-/money-earning/cloud-mining app is different from our other fake earning/mining apps. No, really, it is! See, that's because we've changed the name and colour scheme of it while keeping everything else the same! But don't be fooled by the fact that it only looks similar (as does this ad we've repurposed from our other apps); it's totally not a recycled scam, we promise! If you don't believe us, go ahead and download it from the link below."
 — Heavily paraphrased version of an ad I've seen more times than I can count, for fake earning apps/games/cloud miners (including Tron, which isn't something that can be mined), particularly those made by Mintegral


A lot of what follows is based on what I have read and that is highly opinionated and/or hear-say in the "I heard from a friend of a friend" category. This isn't necessarily factual and I certainly haven't researched all of it; it's what others have experienced and recounted. While I trust certain individuals to some extent, that's only to the extent that I trust strangers on the Internet (very little) and you should trust me as much with the below.

A uHive of Scum and Villainy

Now, I'm not claiming that uHive (HVE) itself definitely is a scam or fake app (because I've not done sufficient research to confirm that for myself), but others (one of whom I consider credible and trustworthy to the extent that I trust any stranger on the 'Net) claim that they have looked into it quite deeply and that it very definitely is that. (Apparently, that claim is based on something to do with a badly written and unaudited smart contract on Ethereum, from what I understand, but I could be mistaken. Not having developed smart contracts yet, I can neither confirm nor deny that, but I'll certainly look at the uHive contract if I ever get that far.) Besides, looking at the percentages held in the top seven to eight accounts compared to the rest (on Etherscan) show that it's highly centralised, if nothing else.

Even if it somehow isn't a scam, the user base of that particular antisocial network is generally/mostly undesirable to me (as I have previously mentioned): Even ignoring the Alt Wrong contingent, that leaves the spammers, scammers, other con-artists and attention whores whom only post comments/content begging for followers, likes and tips, or promise to teach gullible people all they need to know about crypto (for the incredibly low price of a couple of a hundred or so dollars, payable upfront; an absolute steal) ... That's a hard "no" from me, Simon! Yet, some people (here's looking at you, HattyHats) swear blind, up and down that uHive is the Next Big Thing in antisocial media, if people would just give it a chance to get better and prove its worth. Hmm ...

Red Flags on a Universe Scale

Since SF claims/seems to have a hobby involving diving into suspicious projects and not-so-smart contracts, as well as being right about other things, I believe him about uHive being suspicious. (He wrote that the contract for uHive uses non-audited delegate functions, which makes it subject to a reentry attack/error/vulnerability. I don't know what that means, exactly, but it certainly doesn't seem good. That's unless I misunderstand him or he was referring to Pi/Nodl.) I will have to read up on it at some later point in time.

The big red flag to me (and clearly a large number of other people) is that Pi and uHive aren't tradable on any exchange, as far as I know. If the mainnet is somehow legitimate, then why isn't it? Surely it would be, right?

Nodl Your Noodle

Then there is Nodl, which is a new one to me. Apparently, all you have to do to earn between $0.05 and $0.1 USD a day is turn on location services and Bluetooth and keept them on (presumably while visiting a specified location so that GOK whom can do FSM knows what to your device, probably use it as a bot for malicious/nefarious purposes). When it comes to data transfer, Bluetooth is apparently quite insecure (intended for near field communications of brief duration) and can be used as an attack vector. While I don't know enough to confirm or deny that (and I'm not at my sharpest at this point in time of night, anyway), I'm inclined to believe that. I certainly keep both location services and Bluetooth turned off if I'm not actively using them, just in case. Again, that's a hard "no" from me.

I don't even know if Nodl has a blockchain or is tradeable on any major exchange, although it has been suggested that it runs on Polkadot and can be traded on both Huobi and Kraken (neither of which I use, so can't confirm). However, from what I've read (only reviews and opinions from strangers), it might as well be Pi or Helium: The Nodl token never appears on any other exchanges (in the case of Pi, on any exchanges), which effectively makes it a scam.

Pi in the Sky

The reason why you can't find Pi tokens on any exchange is simply because there aren't any. The developers/originators aren't dragging their feet. It hasn't happened by now because it's not going to happen. I'm stating this as a developer with more grand pie-in-the-blue-sky ideas for projects than actual completed projects, much to my chagrin. According to SatoshiFailed (mod of TipNano chat and somewhat of a Coffeezilla when it comes to sus projects, by his own admission), the docs "don't make any sense, are just a bunch of buzzwords". The project's fans are supposedly "the most gullible fans ever or maybe exercising some extreme version of sunk cost fallacy". From what I've seen of that particular so-called "project" (not including the whitepaper), I tend to agree with that assessment/perspective. SF goes on further:

"Last I checked, a few months ago, I reinstalled it [the app] and tried to KYC, but even that process didn't make any sense ... and a chat full of people complaining they've been waiting years to KYC (because you need to get a slot in a queue to take a picture of your ID?) IDK, it made zero sense. And, on top of it all, I seriously think they're running a fake block explorer with fake data, all of it. It's pretty simple: If users were actually able to pass KYC and withdraw, it's be on exchanges without a doubt, but it's not. [...] Just a bunch of crap, IMO.

Just read the Whitepaper if you doubt it."

I've only ever read/seen bad things about Pi (other than advertising) about how it's a scam and best avoided, so have stayed away from it and not investigated it. I don't have my own experience with it to corroborate SF's or other people's, but SF strikes me as an intelligent and credible individual (to the extent that anyone is online), so I believe him on that account. Besides, my experience with Arweave and GoodDollar is similar: I was almost scammed out of Filecoin by the Arweave community, except that I didn't have any filecoin. With GoodDollar, I struggled to pass KYC (and wasn't happy about how one has to go about it), could only move it around on the Fuse network and it went "poof" and vanished into the ether when I tried to move it onto another chain and into my wallet, so I stopped bothering. Besides, the DAO/faucet paid the equivalent of what was supposedly worth about $0.01 USD a day. How is that UBI, when the average person needs a minimum of $2.00 a day just to buy enough food to survive? IDK, but it's a waste of time and effort, IMO.

According to SF:

"... I vividly remember it [Pi's documentation] saying [sic] it was a social experiment in early 2019, by three or so college students who knew nothing about crypto or blockchain tech, but I can't find that info anywhere. It makes sense to remove it, too ... would make for a crummy experiment if everybody knew it was one."

Yeah, you can't have gullible people being aware that they're being conned, now, can you? What kind of a control group is that?

Who Reads (Never Mind Understands) Whitepapers, Anyway?

Whitepapers are like chat/forum rules: Very few people read them, much less remember what's in them or abide by them. (SF and I read them, but I'm hard-pressed to give you a summary of any particular one.) It seems that as long as a whitepaper contains some semblance of intelligent-seeming buzzwords or jargon (particularly if it's difficult to understand what has been written), most people probably assume the project's legitemate and skip the trouble of reading the details. (Bullshit baffles brains, basically AKA the 4B Principle.) Pi's whitepaper is apparently like that, although I haven't read it and can neither deny nor confirm.

On that bombshell, I am going to retire to bed early, since I am anxious, stressed out of my tree and very tired, with nothing to do during yet another power outage. I plan to be up early tomorrow, since I have a lot of work to get done to finish the assessment project I've been given by a potential new employer. Frankly, I've already lost enthusiasm and just want to get it finished. I can't afford to miss this opportunity, my personal issues and struggles be damned!

Thumbnail image from Unbounce. // This reminds me a bit of "debounce", which is a portion of a circuit created to smooth out a signal from a push-button switch, making sure it doesn't send many on/off pulses when pressed, by using a capacitor.

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Great White Snark
Great White Snark

I'm currently seeking fixed employment as a S/W & Web developer (C# & ASP .NET MVC, PHP 8+, Python 3), hoping to stash the farmed fiat and go full Crypto, quit the 07:30-18:00 grind. Unsigned music producer; snarky; white; balding; smashes Patriarchy.

Cryptographic Anarchy: (Mis)Adventures in Crypto
Cryptographic Anarchy: (Mis)Adventures in Crypto

The content of this blog is exclusively to do with online privacy/security, cryptography and cryptocurrency: Understanding it, investing in it, mining it (in groups/crowds), developing/programming it, the social problems it aims to solve and the various ways to make more of it (or not, as various losses and failures happen). Let's get away from banksters, Capitalists and fiat, to an anarcho-syndicalist commune. Banner image: Blogger's own. Contemplating making an HD NFT version if there's interest.

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