Mining Giant Bitmain Hurries to Deploy 90,000 S9 Antminers Ahead of Bitcoin Cash Hard Fork

Ahead of the imminent Bitcoin Cash (BCH) hard fork, mining giant Bitmain has rushed to deploy around 90,000 Antminer S9 machines to the western Chinese region of Xinjiang, Chinese blockchain news source DeepChain reports Nov. 8.

As reported, the BCH network will hard fork on Nov. 15, and Bitmain is reported to be strategizing its role in the forthcoming computing “power war” by reaching out to local mining farms in the coal-rich region of Xianjing.

Local mining pool operator Yu Hao told DeepChain that the mining titan has been in talks with “almost all” the local mining farms since late October, and persuaded them to host almost 90,000 of its S9 machines:

“[Bitmain’s] AntPool requested that a single mining farm should host over 5,000 machines. But in fact, only a few mining farms can satisfy their demand.”
An unnamed source “familiar with the matter” has claimed that “half of [Bitmain’s] marketing staff have gone to Xinjiang to talk with local mining operators about deploying equipment.”

As DeepChain outlines, the power glut in coal-rich regions such as Xinjiang and Inner Mongolia has been advantageous for firms such as Bitmain, as hydropower stations in southwest China have been unable to supply sufficient power to meet their energy-intensive needs.

Beijing-born Bitmain, which is a major holder of Bitcoin Cash, is backing BCH client Bitcoin ABC, which has spearheaded the forthcoming hard fork. ABC’s proposed scalability upgrades have been starkly opposed by an opposing camp, nChain, led by self-proclaimed “Satoshi Nakomoto” Craig S. Wright.

Wright is advocating for a BCH protocol known as Bitcoin-SV (BSV), but so far major mining pools such as BTC.com, AntPool, Btc.top, ViaBTC, Bitcoin.com have all backed Bitcoin ABC, as DeepChain further reports.

CoinGeek, reportedly the largest BCH mining pool, BMG, and SBI have all backed BSV, according to DeepChain, which further reports that some Chinese miners plan to mine BSV as early as Nov. 10 as a “warm-up” to ensure maximum efficiency by the time the fork is initiated.

Notably, largest global crypto trading platform Binance has recently announced its support of the hard fork, a possible reason for the recent major price hike of the asset.
As of press time, Bitcoin Cash is trading at $600.94, up 46.1 percent since Nov.1. As DeepChain notes, Binance has been joined by leading U.S. crypto exchange Coinbase in endorsing the network upgrade.

Bitmain continues to compete with other mining hardware makers to have the technological edge; this week, the firm released two new 7nm (nanometer) Antminers, equipped with next-generation ASIC chips.


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Ethereum’s Important Upgrade May be Delayed

The planned Constantinople hard fork of the Ethereum platform that should increase the efficiency of the platform may not happen this year.
During testing of the hard fork, a “consensus issue” has apparently caused a testnet known as Ropsten to become “not usable,” a tweet from Ethereum development firm Infura said.

Until the issue with the Ropsten testnet has been resolved, developers should make use of other testing networks, the California-based company said.
Ethereum developer Afri Schoedon went on to say Ethereum core developers had agreed during a conference call that the hard fork would not happen this year “if there are any major issues on Ropsten,” while hinting that the market could get some further clarification next Friday.

The Constantinople hard fork has been proposed by leading Ethereum developers as a way to increase the efficiency of the Ethereum platform, make certain alterations to the platform’s economic policy, and delay the “difficulty bomb” that is coded into the protocol.
However, the release of the upgrade is contingent on a successful roll-out on the Ropsten Ethereum testnet. As a result of the issues faced over the weekend, the timeline for the upgrade is therefore unclear right now.

Despite possible delays, Ethereum founder Vitalik Buterin has previously indicated that there is no urgency in rolling out the Constantinople upgrade, saying in an earlier call with developers that “It’s totally not urgent […] We could probably have three months of safety and likely even more,” according to several media outlets.

The price of ether was slightly down Monday morning (UTC 03:00 AM), trading below the 200 mark at about USD 195 for the first time in a month, following a sharp sell-off on Thursday last week. Still, the price has managed to remain above the lows from the September sell-off, giving investors hopes that a solid price floor has been formed.


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Hard Forks Dangerous To Cryptocurrency Stability

Crypto Forks Lead to Loss of Confidence for Investors and Adopters

Hard forks for top of the market coins have had a quiet 2018 compared to last year. The second half of 2017 saw the creation of Bitcoin Cash, forked from the original BTC code commonly referred to as Core, which has led the currency to a position of fourth by total market capitalization, worth nearly $8 billion. Other derivative currencies such as Bitcoin Gold were spawned off in the interim, failing to achieve the market penetrance of BCH. Segwit2x, a contentious fork to Bitcoin that at one point seemed to split the community in two, was set for a high-profile market position with U.S.-based cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase announcing support for the coin. However, just a week before the fork was set to occur, a slew of industry figures and developers came out in support of BTC Core, stating that they would not support the forked coin. In the end the project was largely shelved, but not before creating a massive amount of intrigue for Bitcoin investors and the wider population, particularly over the peculiarity of being gifted “free” coins following forks.

A new study published on Wednesday now suggests that hard forks are not only a confusing aspect for the general crypto public to get behind, leading to the alienation of more casual investors and adopters of the coin, but potentially dangerous to the stability of the entire industry. According to researchers out of the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education, who investigated over 800 soft and hard forks from Bitcoin, the possibility of contentious forks could lead to the undermining of the industry of cryptocurrency despite the potential for widespread adoption. The study concluded that crypto has the potential to alter the future state of commerce, fintech and global information exchange through the use of blockchain. However, hard forks lead to governance challenges which create a lack of trust in the currency. Essentially, the average investor in Bitcoin is relying up the coin’s limited supply and written-in-stone governance, a detail that appears meaningless in the event of repetitive forks,

“Disruption of a cryptocurrency’s blockchain in this way might cause people to lose trust in it and its capacity to survive as a reliable vehicle of exchange,”

While Bitcoin Cash (BCH) has managed to become a mainstay in the industry, with a vast amount of adoption and developmental capital being driven through the coin, including the soon to IPO cryptocurrency goliath Bitmain, the majority of BTC forks fail to live past several months and projects are usually shells within a year. Similar to the declining ICO market, the ease of developing a forked coin has lowered the barrier of entry so significantly that the market has been flooded with projects that barely have an underlying idea let alone a roadmap for usability. Forked coin instigators are betting on market confusion in conjunction with the trendy nature of blockchain and cryptocurrency to drive errant capital–a technique that found some success at the end of 2017, but was widely criticized earlier in the year with the introduction of Litecoin Cash. Litecoin Cash was almost universally regarded as an attempt to capitalize on the brand name of the seventh largest cryptocurrency by market cap.

Hard forks present both an intrusion upon the confidence of investors and users of cryptocurrency as well as presenting a further source of confusion for the broader public still trying to wrap their head around crypto. The paper further adds that stability is necessary for the continued growth and thriving of the industry,

“Hard forks are a threat to maintaining a stable and predictable operating platform that is essential if cryptocurrencies are to be adopted for daily financial transactions.”


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Ethereum Is Testing Code for Its Next Hard Fork

Ethereum developers are already implementing code for Constantinople, the network’s next system-wide upgrade.

The second part of a series of upgrades to make the ethereum network more efficient and less costly in terms of fees, Constantinople will be activated sometime before October’s Devcon4 ethereum conference, according to stakeholders during a core developer meeting Friday.

That said, an exact block number at which the code would go live hasn’t yet been confirmed for the backward-incompatible change.

A loose roadmap for the upgrade has also been suggested. Under that roadmap, the implementation stage continues until August 13, after which there will be two months of testing, including the launch of a Constantinople-specific test network.


The upgrade will include various optimizations aimed at making the platform more efficient – and less costly in terms of fees. Constantinople is the second part of a two-part series of upgrades, following in the footsteps of Byzantium, which was activated last October.

According to the meeting, a total of four ethereum improvement upgrades (EIPs) are currently being implemented by developers. Péter Szilágyi, lead developer of Geth, the most popular ethereum client, said they have already implemented most of the changes.

“The EIPs are mostly done,” Szilágyi said in the meeting.

Some of the upgrades that have reached the implementation stage include EIP 210, which reorganizes how block hashes are stored on ethereum, and EIP 145, which increases the speed of arithmetic in the ethereum virtual machine (EVM). Two other upgrades – EIP 1014 for the addition of ethereum state channels, and EIP 1052, a new op-code that compresses how contracts interact – are also being worked on by developers.

Two other notable changes are still up for discussion, including a possible delay in ethereum’s difficulty bomb and an EIP that could improve how gas pricing works.

At least as far as the mining difficulty question is concerned – a contentious topic that involves a consideration of ethereum’s issuance model and one that has different impacts on various stakeholders – no decision has yet to be made.

“We’re not going to be able to decide this part today,” Hudson Jameson, moderator of the discussion, concluded.


Here at Dollar Destruction, we endeavour to bring to you the latest, most important news from around the globe. We scan the web looking for the most valuable content and dish it right up for you! The content of this article was provided by the source referenced. Dollar Destruction does not endorse and is not responsible for or liable for any content, accuracy, quality, advertising, products or other materials on this page. As always, we encourage you to perform your own research!

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Ethereum’s Top Developers Think a Blockchain Split Might Be Inevitable

Ethereum may be on the brink of a blockchain split.

At least, that was the mood at a meeting of top ethereum developers late last week where a discussion on a controversial code proposal called EIP 999 led some to speculate the scenario is now a possibility. Indeed, it’s now believed the proposal, which which seeks a technical fix that would return $264 million in lost funds, is so contentious, some users may chose to defect to a new version of the code.

Those in favor of the proposal point to the frequent losses of ether due to buggy contracts, arguing that the platform should ensure against such avoidable mistakes. But on the other side, many warn that editing code after deployment could damage not only the security but also the integrity of the platform.

“It’s clear no matter where you stand that the issue is contentious enough that if [EIP 999] goes forward and implements then it will generate a contentious hard fork,” developer of ethereum’s Mist browser Alex Van de Sande, said during the dev meeting on April 20.
“It’s unavoidable that it will create a split,” he continued.

Still, it’s important to note the size and influence of its backers. Spearheading the code change, for instance, is Parity Technologies, the ethereum software company behind the wallet that was impacted by the fund freeze.

Founded by ethereum co-founder Dr. Gavin Wood in 2015, Parity is the second most popular ethereum software, used by almost one-third of the network.

Speaking at the meeting, two representatives from Parity, communications officer Afri Schoedon and co-founder and CEO of the company Jutta Steiner, urged client developers to move forward with versions of the software equipped with the EIP 999 change.
“For me, the most logical step to take is just implement EIP 999, and I don’t see what waiting another four weeks to conclude would benefit,” Schoedon said.

Steiner echoed this, emphasizing that implementing the code doesn’t necessitate a split.
However, there was notable disagreement on the assertion. Péter Szilágyi, the lead developer of Geth, the Ethereum Foundation-led ethereum software which serves the majority of users, disagreed, stating that if the code is made available it is likely to create a contentious split.

Szilagyi said:
“We’re talking about exactly the same networks and we’re basically starting a tribalism war. I don’t think we’ll reach a consensus.”

And the discussion, while informal, shows ethereum’s two biggest competing softwares are willing to go head-to-head on the issue, a development that could prove notable going forward.

Stepping back, though, it’s important to understand how Parity and Geth work together. Each software communicates directly with the ethereum virtual machine – which takes smart contract language and translates it into more general code – but Parity and Geth do so in different computer programming languages.


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By keeping up with each other’s development, both softwares remain in sync and on the same blockchain not only with each other but also with ethereum more broadly.
As such, it is critical that Geth and Parity contain the same code.

If, for instance, one team implements EIP 999 and the other does not, the blockchain could fracture into two divergent groups – two ethereums.
And just as the developers of the software implementations are split, so are ethereum users. An ether vote recently showed that a majority of people were opposed to the code change, but that voting method has come under much criticism. Other developers are looking to social media to help them gauge community consensus, but so far, it remains inconclusive.

As such, Parity’s Steiner said that the company “had not decided yet” whether to implement the change. But representatives from the company told said that it would be publishing a statement in the coming days.

What is known, though, is that without Parity, ethereum would lose quite a bit.
Not only does the company provide a significant portion of the mining power that secures transactions on the network, but it also represents a large portion of ethereum’s developer community.
Speaking to this and Parity’s drive to hard fork so they retrieve user funds, Van de Sande said:
“Parity is a valuable team of developers, and they have a very large incentive to create a fork and support it.”

But even with an incentive to move forward with implementation, there are plenty of disincentives.
For one, if a split on ethereum occurs, it won’t merely impact transactions, but also the thousands of tokens and businesses built on top of the blockchain, Van de Sande said in a blog post.
Following a split, each ethereum contract will simultaneously exist on both chains, or as Van de Sande described, “If you own rare online cats, now every one of them will have an evil twin in a parallel universe.”

Van de Sande elaborated, saying, “The best case scenario for a split is one in which the minority fork is a very small community and most apps know which way to move forward, but it still might create an adversarial community.”

However, there is hope for disincentivizing Parity from going forward without full consensus, he said.

If a split occurs, it is likely that both ethereum blockchains will lose value as the community splits into two groups. This means that the money lost as a result of the Parity fund freeze will decrease in value.

“Since there is so much locked ether, that can amount to millions of dollars,” Van de Sande said. “Then they might not be so incentivized to fork it.”
Yet, that still doesn’t eliminate the issue that hundreds of millions of dollars of ether are locked up whereby users (including some high-profile ICO issuers) can use them.
As such, Van de Sande is working on a method to refund the Parity losses with the same amount of value as was lost in the fund freeze, although he wouldn’t go into much detail.

Instead, he said:
“The question is how to give value to those tokens, and that’s something I, and I hope others, will probably be writing more about.”


Here at Dollar Destruction, we endeavour to bring to you the latest, most important news from around the globe. We scan the web looking for the most valuable content and dish it right up for you! The content of this article was provided by the source referenced. Dollar Destruction does not endorse and is not responsible for or liable for any content, accuracy, quality, advertising, products or other materials on this page. As always, we encourage you to perform your own research!

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Bitcoin Cash (BCH) Hard Fork May 15,2018 Details & Action Plan Guide

Bitcoin Cash, the world’s fourth-largest cryptocurrency by market cap, is preparing for a hard fork on May 15.

The cryptocurrency famously launched with a hard fork in August 2017, when BCH split from the original bitcoin (BTC) chain. Now, BCH is using the same strategy to enhance the real-world usefulness of its cryptocurrency.

The May 15 hard fork is known as Bitcoin ABC. It quadruples the block size from 8MB to 32MB.

“Legacy” bitcoin (BTC), meanwhile, continues to have a block size of 1MB. BTC has maintained the 1MB block size since launching in 2009 and has experienced significant scaling issues as a result.

Today, BTC can only process approximately seven transactions per second. Credit card networks like VISA and MasterCard, meanwhile, can process over 50,000 transactions per second. BTC has proposed a centralized solution called the Lightning Network that runs outside the original BTC blockchain, while BCH developers emphasize larger block size as an on-chain scaling solution.

Bitcoin Cash was founded on the belief that larger block size will lead to greater transactional capacity. We’ve already seen that belief in action as BCH continues to have lower fees and higher transactional capacity than BTC.

This latest hard fork was first proposed when seven Bitcoin Cash development teams met in London in November 2017 to discuss the direction of the cryptocurrency.

In addition to a block size of 32MB, Bitcoin Cash will reduce block intervals to 2.5 minutes, giving the blockchain speeds similar to Litecoin.

Plus, the hard fork could also potentially activate dormant bitcoin code that would allow the BCH network to offer features similar to ERC20 tokens on the Ethereum network – including allowing users to launch ICOs.

The price of Bitcoin Cash, meanwhile, has surged 20% in the last week. The price of BCH has doubled since the beginning of April.

Bitcoin Cash Hard Fork Changes and Upgrades

The main upgrades in this latest hard fork include:

  • Block size will be raised to 32MB, which is the largest possible block size available without changing peer-to-peer protocols
  • The hard fork will re-enable the existing opcodes that were disabled earlier (these opcodes are the building blocks for some of the more advanced smart contracts)
  • The upper turn size will be increased to 220 bytes from 40 bytes, allowing users to add more data on the upper turn for archiving on the blockchain (this could lead to the launch of “colored coins”, allowing you to track other assets that aren’t validated by miners)
  • The possibility of timestamping data (this is also a result of increasing the upper turn size); this would allow users to hash a document and add it to the blockchain in order to prove existence of the document

All Bitcoin Cash node operators are encouraged to adopt version 0.17.0 prior to the May 15 hard fork.

The next Bitcoin Cash hard fork, meanwhile, is scheduled to take place in November 2018.


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