On IOTA Meetup France

I attended to IOTA Meetup France organized in Paris held at the Microsoft building a few days ago (14 December 2017).

Below, I will try to convey my impressions about what the IOTA presenters talked about in this event:

  • They make very strong arguments about IOTA and told that they have 8 mathematicians working in IOTA.

  • However, I was disappointed to hear that you need a “coordinator” until the network is “big enough” in IOTA . It is not clear how to decide if the network if “big enough” or not. They say that they will not shut down the “coordinator” directly, rather it will be shut down gradually. So what do these mathematicians for?

  • I was also very disappointed to hear that anything related to security is in “work-in-progress” in IOTA. So how dare they can start announcing their technology?

  • Another disappointing issue was to see that it is not clear how they want to manage double-spending attacks in IOTA . They say that in IOTA you can partition the network and then combine again. But how can you prevent double spend attacks in such configuration? Their answer is fuzzy and they spoke things like oracles between networks, which you can do in any other block-chain system. But they are announcing this network partitioning stuff as a brand novel property of theirs.

  • A comment from a speaker of IOTA: “The strongest part of IOTA is its white paper. It is very good, there are no mistakes, and written by a very good mathematician… … using Markov chains is a very nice idea…”. Should I lough, should I cry?

  • However, people commented that there are many hypothesis and holes in their white paper. They replied to this by telling that currently they are preparing another document giving more details.

  • They also claim that the mathematical calculations are much complex than Bitcoin, which according to them means that IOTA is better. They are not aware that using simple mathematics it is possible to design complex robust systems.

  • They use hash-based signatures. They say that the advantage: quantum secure, the disadvantage: key-reuse is not possible.

  • There is no smart-contract support. They focus only on micro-payments and they don’t aim to replace Bitcoins.

  • But at the same time they do not stop criticizing Bitcoin. They do not even have a complete techno and from now they speak about a techno that is running since several years without any problems.

In conclusion, the IOTA presenters created a strong impression on me that IOTA does not have a solid background and is not ready to use (even to announce). At least for the moment…