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Old 2017-12-10, 16:06   #1
a1call
 
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Default Are Bitcoins Prime Related

Hi all,

Can't figure out anything about Bitcoins and yes I did Google.
Is Bitcoin-Mining based on factoring semiprimes?

There is a Bitcoin for dummies article out there, but it is probably too advanced for my comprehension.

Thanks in advance for any simpleton level understanding.
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Old 2017-12-10, 16:15   #2
ATH
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No, it is just brute forcing finding answers to cryptographic hash functions. So much energy used for useless computations.

Here are 2 videos explaining bit coins in slightly different ways:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lx9zgZCMqXE

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bBC-nXj3Ng4

Last fiddled with by ATH on 2017-12-10 at 16:17
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Old 2017-12-10, 16:21   #3
retina
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Just wait until the bubble bursts, and then sell all your bitcoins one day before. And if your time machine is not working, then contact a fortune teller and find out when it will burst and sell accordingly. Of course there is always the problem of actually trying to sell them, not many places will buy large quantities of them, so you will likely get stuck with a whole lot of them and be unable to find enough buyers before the price plummets.
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Old 2017-12-10, 16:39   #4
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Ok, so I'm not the only one expecting the bubble to burst.


According to this the total hash rate is currently ~ 13,000,000 Terahash / sec = 1.3*10^19 Hash/sec.

Some claim 1 hash is ~1300 32bit add operations and others say it is 6350 integer operations which should correspond to roughly 12700 FLOP, but that depends on the integer performance of hardware rated at a certain FLOPS.
https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=52303.0
https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=50720.0

If we just use the lowest number as floating point operations: 1300 FLOPS then the hash rate corresponds to 1300*1,3*10^19 = 1,69 * 10^22 FLOPS = 16,900,000,000 TFLOPS which is ~180,000 times the top supercomputer: https://www.top500.org/list/2017/11/
and it is ~ 56,000,000 times GIMPS roughly 300 TFLOPS.
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Old 2017-12-10, 19:12   #5
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tl;dr Bitcoin and what it means to mine it:
  • Bitcoin works by recording transactions on the blockchain, a ledger of sorts. It's a chain because it is made up of blocks, where block_n+1 relies on data in block_n
  • Mining is the process of creating a valid block_n+1, given that the chain is currently at block_n. When you create a valid block you get a reward in newly minted bitcoin, as well as the transaction fees of any transactions included in the block you created
  • Miners create block_n+1 using block_n and transactions that want to be on the blockchain, In short, they compile a block, and repeatedly hash the header of that block until the hash value is "valid", aka below a certain threshold. As an example, a hashing algorithm might output any number between 0 and 9 inclusive, but we arbitrarily say that only input that yields an output of "0" is valid. A miner repeatedly hashes different headers until it finds one that outputs "0", at which point it has successfully mined a block
  • Why they do this: It's called proof of work (PoW). Among other things it's used to secure the chain, and regulate how often blocks are created (by changing what is considered a valid hash dynamically, referred to as difficulty)

In theory consumer hardware can mine bitcoin. In practice, only ASICs mine it (ASICs are dedicated devices thousands of times more efficient at mining bitcoin than consumer hardware, the bitcoin algorithm is simple and ripe for parallelising like this). Consumer hardware has moved on to mining altcoins, there are hundreds of different cryptocurrencies out there of which bitcoin is one (in fact if you had an afternoon and the inclination you could create your own cryptocurrency, which should serve as warning enough that most are trash).

Quote:
Originally Posted by ATH View Post
No, it is just brute forcing finding answers to cryptographic hash functions. So much energy used for useless computations.
...
Figure out a hashing algorithm that is cheat-proof and does something useful, and make your own crypto. Call it GIMPS. People who mine GIMPS generate GIMPS, people who buy GIMPS on an exchange raises the price of GIMPS, indirectly incentivising miners to mine more GIMPS. I'd buy GIMPS as an indirect form of donation. Some people would buy GIMPS because it's called GIMPS. Most people would buy GIMPS because they are speculating and don't know why one crypto has value over another

Quote:
Originally Posted by ATH View Post
Ok, so I'm not the only one expecting the bubble to burst.
...
Depends what you mean by burst. I expect the price of bitcoin and most altcoins to drop sharply at some point in the future, but crypto is here to stay as a technology. That said, I am eyeing the bitcoin futures development with suspicion and contempt, I can see the threat of (stronger) manipulation potentially being very disruptive. Then again, volatility and speculation is the name of the game.
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Old 2018-01-18, 07:34   #6
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559 dd

http://riecoin.org/
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Old 2018-01-18, 17:25   #7
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I feel like someone should mention gapcoin which is a prime-related cryptocurrency.
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Old 2018-01-19, 00:43   #8
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BTC may not be primes-related, but it is most definitely Ponzi-related:

Researchers: One Person Drove Bitcoin Price from $150 to $1,000 - ExtremeTech

As I've said elsewhere, it would be merely amusing (and fascinating, in the "Madness of Crowds" sense) to watch the mania unfold if it weren't consuming such exponentially-growing resources (hardware, electricity, human time).
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Old 2018-01-19, 10:52   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ewmayer View Post
BTC may not be primes-related, but it is most definitely Ponzi-related:

Researchers: One Person Drove Bitcoin Price from $150 to $1,000 - ExtremeTech

As I've said elsewhere, it would be merely amusing (and fascinating, in the "Madness of Crowds" sense) to watch the mania unfold if it weren't consuming such exponentially-growing resources (hardware, electricity, human time).
As pointed in another thread, that "research" is fake. You should not believe anything on the web. They justified raising of the prices by some bots trading BTC they did not own. First of all, this is impossible to do with any cc, and second, economically incorrect: selling short causes the price to fall, not to rise. Investopedia.com is a good start, for who is interested in trading basics. Now, I do not contest the fact that strange things happened at mt gox, but I am sure the owners of it knew exactly what they were doing, and any attempt to wash them clean now or before, is just dust in our eyes...
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Old 2018-03-06, 21:31   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ATH View Post
So much energy used for useless computations.
The ends justify the means. It's the world's most secure and first global democratic currency.

Aside from that, when comparing the Bitcoin energy usage to the energy usage of datacenters from facebook or banks, the argument becomes invalid.
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Old 2018-03-06, 21:52   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blackadder View Post
Aside from that, when comparing the Bitcoin energy usage to the energy usage of datacenters from facebook or banks, the argument becomes invalid.
Facebook's energy usage is about 2 TW hr per year. Bank of America is about 3. Bitcoin is over 50.
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