Key excerpt from "Bitcoin Mars" on Bitcoin mining's responsive energy utilisation (REU)

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2 years ago

"Quit showing off, Brent," says Leon, bounding wider of the crater to avoid the dust billowing.

(snoopset) "Look who's talkin'... Neil!"
Leon says, "Hippity hoppity!"

Terrain can get tricky this close to the rim, but he is well-practised enough to handle it quickly and safely, despite his preoccupation with this chainsplit. Had to be one of the Bitcoins, or it wouldn't have registered on the BTFN, he tells himself. The latest build can detect splits in BCH, BTC, 480, even 123, and a bunch of others. It can't mine most of those, but the node at the lab is on older hardware, anyway, so it isn't energy efficient enough to mine profitably this close to Earth. Getting involved in the Rush never became a C-VRIT priority -- just a little side hobby of his and Theo's. They are, after all, living on the doorstep of history in the making. But on the doorstep, it seems, they will remain.

Not that Leon hadn't requested energy provisioning for a better miner. There just was and still is resistance among bureaucrats who bought into all the 'crypto waste' nonsense of the '20s. And it was nonsense. Crypto mining involves negligible fixed energy costs due to difficulty adjustment algorithms. D.A.A.s ensure that mining difficulties dynamically adjust to use only as much energy as the community connected to it is able and willing to spare. Even if the number of mineable cryptocurrencies were to double overnight, the energy there is to spare would remain relatively constant, so the D.A.A.s would be forced to adjust all their mining difficulties so that the total energy required by the cryptocurrency sector would increase only marginally -- a form of natural growth -- and it would be a net win due to sucking economic activity away from the non-crypto currency markets, which still have the highest fixed energy costs.

Because of that key 'D.A.A.' aspect of Bitcoin's original design, underappreciated at first but which developed into the entire field of responsive energy utilisation, there is no mathematical way for the cryptocurrency mining industry to grow to require more energy than its community as a whole is willing to spare -- even in the depths of space -- and this has always been the case, since the day Satoshi Nakamoto mined the first block, in which he secreted the historic text, "The Times Jan/03/2009 Chancellor on brink of second bailout for banks." But, try telling them that.

C-VRIT had put in a bid, nevertheless, at Leon's urging, for a Star6 refuelling contract at the crater's modest spaceport, but in the final stages of Rush planning, no such contracts were awarded. Apparently, it doesn't often make economic sense to sink a fuel reserve into a gravity well, so Rush rockets will not be stopping here. Fuel savings were accomplished instead through a set of cooperative agreements packing dozens of spacebound drones containing miners and stakers into the upper stages on each of over a hundred, massive, booster rockets, the last flight of which has just been launched directly from Earth -- with the fringe benefit of pushing actual, live mining rigs beyond their fork horizons as quickly as possible, and claiming those historic 'firsts'.

But it's way too soon to be hitting those horizons, thinks Leon, almost aloud. Even the earliest intentional fork is not expected for another week. There shouldn't be a chainsplit.

Read the full first chapter of "Bitcoin Mars" at

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Avatar for powellquesne
2 years ago