NYSE parent Intercontinental Exchange has begun trading Bitcoin futures from Bakkt yesterday (archived). Microsoft and Boston Consulting Group are also involved in the instrument. The contracts promise physical delivery of Bitcoins, but it remains to be seen how seriously anyone involved in this particular market is going to investigate the sincerity of the delivery claims. This new source of volatility has seen fiat/Bitcoin interfaces reporting substantial volatility with today's manifesting mostly in a downward direction.
Player Mircea Mircescu scored the biggest-ever "pop" in the history of Eulora, MiniGame's Bitcoin-denominated MMORPG, just past midnight server time on December 16th, 2017. Reigning the "Top of Pops" list in-game, the windfall weighs in at 3505.309 million ECu, or a hair over three and a half Bitcoin. The previous chart-topper occurred two years ago, also in December, at 1081.602 million ECu.
Physics professor and Danhua Capital founding partner Shoucheng Zhang appears to have been garbage collected by his side gig employer Stanford University (archived). The 55 year old Zhang was found dead December 1st and his death was attributed to suicide without investigation. Statements circulating claiming origin with Zhang's family are supposing Stanford University was central to Zhang's life and won't you pretty please contribute to Stanford in Zhang's memory while declining to investigate Zhang's suiciding?
The Power Rangers introduced a coin inflation bug to their Bitcoin network client dubbed "Bitcoin Core" in 2016 by removing a check against double spending (archived). The bug was introduced by Matt Corallo (WoT: bluematt), advocated by Pieter Wuille (WoT: sipa), approved by Gregory Maxwell (WoT: gmaxwell) and MIT's Cory Fields, then merged by Wladimir van der Laan.
The reference Bitcoin network client maintained by the Bitcoin Foundation is unaffected by the bug introduced into the forked "Core" client.
A number of dubious publications this week floated a "research paper" of unclear origin, methadology, and conclusion. The popularly distilled headline they produced from the report is that Bitcoin has either achieved or is set to imminently achieve 0.5% of the world's energy consumption. Naturally pantsuit outlets editorialized this uncertain finding as "a bad thing" though few things are more encouraging.
Today disclosure of two plaintext leaking behaviors in email clients handling OpenPGP and S/MIME encrypted messages has been released (archived). The vulnerability affecting S/MIME is baked into the S/MIME standard and may only be mitigated by abandoning S/MIME, no other mitigation is possible. Meanwhile the plaintext leaking behavior affecting OpenPGP encrypted emails requires certain common but very stupid behavior on the part of an email client and the user allowing the email client to be involved in decrypting the message.
The attack in OpenPGP encrypted email involves the message being molested on the wire in such a way the plaintext metadata surrounding the cyphertext is modified to engage your typical email client's HTML rendering engine. If the email client is allowed to be involved in decrypting the cyphertext as is common with various client "plugins", the email client can "phone home" the plaintext after decryption to the message's molester according to the spurious instructions delivered to the HTML rendering engine. The mitigation for this vulnerability is hygiene and not allowing your email client to be involved in cryptographic operations beyond sending and recieving cyphertext blobs encrypted and decrypted elsewhere.