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submitted by QuantalyticsResearch to CryptoCurrency [link] [comments]

Forking chains to ASIC resistance algos is a risk to the security of the network and a subsidy for GPU miners

ASIC resistance seems to be something that crypto fans cheer. This may have something to do with the fact that they see Bitmain as a looming monopolistic threat that can produce enough hardware to 51% networks.
While this may be true to some extent, the solution to this problem seems to always be to simply fork them off. This, of course, never actually works.
Take for example Horizen (formerly Zencash). Horizen is a fork from Zclassic, which was a fork to remove the 20% founders fee from the block reward from Zcash, which was itself forked from Bitcoin.
Bitcoin -> Zcash -> Zclassic -> Horizen (Zencash)
Now, being a fork of Zcash, Horizen uses an equihash algo for mining. Other coins that use equihash include Bitcoin Gold, Komodo and, of course, Zcash.
The whole point of making equihash was to be an ASIC resistant algo. Well, guess what? In less than a year equihash ASICs were created.
The reason I bring up these coins is because Horizen and Bitcoin Gold both recently suffered 51% attacks on their respective networks. The attackers were able to rent more than 51% of each coins hash rate and used Nakamoto consensus rules to mine in secret, faster than the rest of the network. This allowed the attacker to deposit on binance, trade ZEN for BTC , withdraw, and after he received his BTC, add his blocks to the chain (longest chain rule) and double spending his ZEN making free BTC.
BTG and ZEN had different approaches to this problem.
BTG decided to go with a more "memory hard" equihash algo, which will stymie ASICs for a time, but they will likely be back, if the coins have a big enough market cap.
Horizen decided not to follow in BTG's footsteps. Their approach is to slightly alter Nakamoto consensus rules to disincentivize mining in secret. This, in my opinion, is a much more elegant and long term solution to the 51% problem.
GPU miners in the Horizen community claimed that the Horizen team's decision to not fork to ASIC resistance was giving into Bitmain. However, in the few months that ASIC miners have been mining equihash, two other companies, Innoscillicon and ASICminer (company name) developed more powerful equihash miners than Bitmain, although they were quite a bit more expensive. Add to this the fact that Samsung has been making ASIC chips for at least 6 months and it starts to become clear that Bitmain's monopoly will slowly be chipped away by the market.
The point is, for most ASIC resistance advocates, it comes down to their concern for decentralization because of Bitmain's dominance. To this, I will direct you to the equihash saga as outlined above.
If you believe that Bitmain is as nefarious as some say they are, why do you think they are not above developing an ASIC miner for coins that are supposed to be ASIC resistant, test in secret, and then just unleash their hash on the network, rendering it completely useless? They could have done that with equihash, but they didn't, maybe mostly because they didn't think it was worth the pain to fabricate them all.
ASIC resistance is futile. GPU mining is a hobby for most, and they can resell the GPUs when they are finished. ASIC mining is the industrial version of mining chains need to be secure against attacks, by up to and including state actors.
For all these reasons (and more) I have come to the conclusion that forking to ASIC resistant algos is dangerous for the network because it artificially suppresses hash power (and opens the door to hostile takeovers), is temporary and essentially a subsidy to GPU miners.
Disclaimer: I do not mine, but I am a secure node operator for Horizen.
submitted by dieyoung to CryptoCurrency [link] [comments]

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New Bitmain Bitcoin Miner - Most Powerful One Yet?

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