[bitcoin-dev] A Small Modification to Segwit

David Vorick david.vorick at gmail.com
Sun Apr 9 23:51:29 UTC 2017

On Apr 9, 2017 7:00 PM, "Jared Lee Richardson via bitcoin-dev" <
bitcoin-dev at lists.linuxfoundation.org> wrote:

I can speak from personal experience regarding another very prominent
altcoin that attempted to utilize an asic-resistant proof of work
algorithm, it is only a matter of time before the "asic resistant"
algorithm gets its own Asics.  The more complicated the algorithm, the more
secretive the asic technology is developed.  Even without it,
multi-megawatt gpu farms have already formed in the areas of the world with
low energy costs.  I'd support the goal if I thought it possible, but I
really don't think centralization of mining can be prevented.

On Apr 9, 2017 1:16 PM, "Erik Aronesty via bitcoin-dev" <bitcoin-dev at lists.
linuxfoundation.org> wrote:

> Curious: I'm not sure why a serious discussion of POW change is not on the
> table as a part of a longer-term roadmap.
> Done right, a ramp down of reliance on SHA-256 and a ramp-up on some of
> the proven, np-complete graph-theoretic or polygon manipulation POW would
> keep Bitcoin in commodity hardware and out of the hands of centralized
> manufacturing for many years.
> Clearly a level-playing field is critical to keeping centralization from
> being a "defining feature" of Bitcoin over the long term.   I've heard the
> term "level playing field" bandied about quite a bit.   And it seems to me
> that the risk of state actor control and botnet attacks is less than
> state-actor manipulation of specialized manufacturing of "SHA-256 forever"
> hardware.   Indeed, the reliance on a fairly simple hash seems less and
> less likely a "feature" and more of a baggage.
> Perhaps regular, high-consensus POW changes might even be *necessary* as a
> part of good maintenance of cryptocurrency in general.   Killing the
> existing POW, and using an as-yet undefined, but deployment-bit ready POW
> field to flip-flop between the current and the "next one" every 8 years or
> or so, with a ramp down beginning in the 7th year....  A stub function that
> is guaranteed to fail unless a new consensus POW is selected within 7
> years.
> Something like that?
> Haven't thought about it *that* much, but I think the network would
> respond well to a well known cutover date.   This would enable
> rapid-response to quantum tech, or some other needed POW switch as well...
> because the mechanisms would be in-place and ready to switch as needed.
> Lots of people seem to panic over POW changes as "irresponsible", but it's
> only irresponsible if done irresponsibly.
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The real bottleneck today is the amount of capex required to achieve
optimal mining. I am strongly in favor of PoW research that investigates
better PoW, but I do not think that any obvious strategies are known yet to
improve substantially on computation heavy hashcash.
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