45 votes
Accepted

Why doesn't Bitcoin migrate to proof-of-stake?

Proof of Stake is basically a case of having your cake and eating it, too. PoW is a simple work-around to a coordination problem that was previously thought to be unsolvable. It sort of "cheats&...
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  • 64.6k
21 votes

Why doesn't Bitcoin migrate to proof-of-stake?

I think there are at least four reasons: The miners are stakeholders in the bitcoin ecosystem. Mining solves a problem for them. Taking away PoW mining would make bitcoin no longer work for one of ...
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14 votes

Why doesn't Bitcoin migrate to proof-of-stake?

I think there are some very convincing theoretical arguments to be made, but there is also just a very practical consideration: Right now, a very large portion of BTC is being held in the cold ...
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  • 17.4k
13 votes
Accepted

What can be done to slow/prevent mining centralization?

Asking how to prevent the mining industry from being centralized into places with low electricity costs is like asking how to prevent the shipping industry from being centralized into cities that are ...
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  • 8,734
9 votes

What is a likely solution to Bitcoin's energy consumption problem?

I feel that a solution will have to be found I'm not sure I agree there is a 'problem' that needs to be explicitly fixed. The article you linked explains the relationship between price and ...
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  • 17.4k
7 votes
Accepted

In the case that I have free electricity, is mining worth it?

First, mining does not require a lot of bandwidth. Whatever you have is likely enough. Second, mining profits (in bitcoin, not some currency after exchange) is determined by difficulty. Difficulty ...
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  • 1,658
6 votes

What can be done to slow/prevent mining centralization?

One possibility among others to encourage mining decentralization is to rely on already owned/amortized hardware to mine the currency. Most people will not by ASICs to mine bitcoin, but many already ...
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  • 786
6 votes

Can it really be true that the Bitcoin system consumes almost $1.000.000 in electricity per day?

Of course. At the current block reward of 25 BTC per block, on average 3600 BTC are mined per day which are worth over $1 million. If it were significantly much cheaper than $1M (in terms of energy ...
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5 votes

As transactions are getting increasingly slow and expensive, how can Bitcoin compete against newer better currencies?

When transactions are created they are essentially a payment promise. They are submitted as a message to the network, where every node checks that the promised money exists and then forwards the ...
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  • 64.6k
5 votes
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What can be done with old (unprofitable) ASICs?

If your electricity costs are high, unprofitable for you may mean profitable for someone else. Some miners may still use unprofitable ASICs either to support the network (at a smaller loss than with ...
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5 votes

How much more energy efficient is PoS (proof of stake) than PoW (proof of work)? Are there any figures on this?

When providing an equivalent amount of security, I don't believe PoS can be more efficient than PoW. I do understand how it may appear this way on the surface, but I think deeper consideration shows ...
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  • 17.4k
4 votes
Accepted

Who Really Controls Bitcoin?

As we've answered earlier today the description of what happens when 90% of the hashpower is lost is approximately accurate, although somewhat exaggerated: "A 90% loss will create 2 hour block ...
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  • 64.6k
4 votes

How does the computational cost of verifying transactions scale with the number of total transactions?

As more transactions are added to the block chain, does each individual transaction (ie. I send a bitcoin to a friend) get more expensive (in terms of FLOPS) to verify and commit to the chain? No, it ...
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  • 62.4k
4 votes
Accepted

Bitcoin Energy Consumption and Carbon Footprint a good long term investment?

I have read somewhere that every Bitcoin transaction is "equivalent to the power consumption of an average U.S. household over 22.86 days.". Is that true? Isn't that horrible? tl;dr: Most ...
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4 votes
Accepted

Is there a way to change Bitcoin Open Source code to be more Environmentally friendly?

Yes, there is a way, by creating a BIP, but an alternative to PoW would very likely not get consensus in the community, and thus its supporters would be forced (and are free to) to create a hard fork, ...
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3 votes

Who Really Controls Bitcoin?

This is a bad article. While it may be true that Bitcoin is difficult to change, it is much easier to shut down. This is true! While full clients will not accept invalid blocks, nothing guarantees ...
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  • 28.8k
3 votes
Accepted

What is the marginal energy cost of a bitcoin transaction?

Yes, this number is the total energy consumption of mining, divided by the number of transactions confirmed. The total energy consumption has basically nothing to do with the actual number of ...
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3 votes

Why doesn't Bitcoin migrate to proof-of-stake?

Bitcoin should switch to BFT (Byzantine Fault Tolerant) PoS which is secure by definition. Most people that don't like PoS are thinking in "vanilla" or "chain based" PoS protocols ...
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  • 57
3 votes

Who is paying for the running costs of Bitcoin?

The people operating the mining hardware do. Mining hardware consumes electricity, so people who run the hardware receive an electricity bill from their electricity provider. They pay the bill using ...
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  • 62.4k
3 votes

Who is paying for the running costs of Bitcoin?

Who is paying for the running costs of Bitcoin? The primary costs are almost entirely paid by miners. Anyone else who runs any other sort of node (wallet etc) is likely to be also contributing by ...
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3 votes
Accepted

To be more energy efficient, wouldn't be a consensual fork - right now - without the reward of new mined btc for each block helpful?

I would assume that the transactions fees would stay or converge to be very low levels, because every miner has always an incentive to add any transaction with a positive fee. Block space is finite, ...
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  • 15.1k
3 votes

Decreasing Energy Consumption of Bitcoin's PoW with paired mining rounds

I think that implementing the protocol described in this paper wouldn't do much to diminish the total energy spent mining, but it would increase network instability and the potential for malicious ...
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  • 17.4k
3 votes

Decreasing Energy Consumption of Bitcoin's PoW with paired mining rounds

Like chytrik said, the paper is light on all the interesting details. How do the rules get enforced? How are miners identified? How is the global time agreed upon? Why wouldn't miners just hop pools ...
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  • 64.6k
3 votes

Could BTC be changed so that it limited the amount of computation power a given miner used?

No, it does not seem possible to impose limitations as proposed on miners without severely impacting key properties of Bitcoin. The proposed change would at least require registering miners and ...
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  • 64.6k
3 votes

Could BTC be changed so that it limited the amount of computation power a given miner used?

would there be a way to change the algorithm to limit how many transactions a given mining installation could process per day, No. Miners can submit blocks anonymously, there is no mechanism by which ...
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  • 17.4k
3 votes

Is BTC inherently much more energy-hungry than other currencies, or just been around longer?

other coins. Do they work fundamentally differently, To secure the record of transactions, Bitcoin uses a type of mechanism called Proof of Work (PoW). Some other cryptocurrencies use any of several ...
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2 votes

Does difficulty ever stop increasing?

Bitcoin difficulty increases or decreases for a reason. Which is keeping block mining periods close to 10 minutes. Mining is an investment, which requires a good market and trade-off analysis of ...
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2 votes

Would free energy cause a market collapse?

Although this question might be "too broad" or "off-topic", I'll give you an answer and it's no. By removing the cost of electricity, hardware expenditure becomes the ceiling for hashrates. Surely ...
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  • 5,243
2 votes

BTC transaction cost vs fees

Miners also get a 12.5 BTC reward per block, which is roughly $7,500 at current prices. This is the main reason miners are willing to spend so much to mine a block. The transaction fees themselves don'...
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  • 13.7k
2 votes
Accepted

Keeping old blocks on an external hard drive and latest blocks on an SSD

Blocks are not accessed under normal operation, except: When a peer fetches one (and the most recent block is usually served out of an in memory cache), when there is a reorginization that must undo ...
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  • 7,519

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