Bram Cohen double dips and invents proof of space and farming

Jul 7, 2019

Bitcoin is the Gold standard of cryptos, but what about its caveats? Yes, we should allow ourselves the audacity to question Bitcoin, and Bram is the number one go-to expert. As he puts it, digital money doesn’t have to be wasteful: bitcoin burns around $600k every day in electricity… So, let’s hear from Bram directly:

” Bitcoin is a secured distributed database. That sounds like an oxymoron, how can you have a secured distributed database? If everyone just leaves and totally new people come in, the database continues moving forward without interruption.


The idea in Bitcoin is that you have this block-chain that requires actual computational work to create.

When you have a bitcoin mining operation, all those computers are burning a lot of electricity, they’re not doing anything, most of what they are doing accomplishes nothing. What they’re doing is they’re printing lottery tickets. Once in a while, one of them prints a winning lottery ticket. Once every couple minutes, somewhere on planet earth, one of these machines prints a winning lottery ticket and then everything moves forward.


If you and I are just reading this database and we get into an argument about what is the current state of the database. We can resolve this argument just by looking at the weight of our block-chains and whichever one had more blood sweat and tears going into its creation is the winner.  It creates rapid and reliable consensus on what the current state of the database is.


It really accomplishes this seemingly impossible task of making a distributed secured database.

… and you have warehouses full of computers burning electricity doing nothing, but those caveats aside, it is really accomplishing something amazing.

And it’s hard to figure out how to improve on this, and people go” well we’ll just use a different mining algorithm”, which is just a different way of printing lottery tickets, but those all kind of wind up of being the same

The way that you mine any Crypto that is truly distributed and that does really have a block-chain… It boils down to:

– you manufacturer custom hardware for doing your mining, then you burn electricity with that custom hardware to do your mining.

Bram Cohen

Learn more about Chia:

We’re excited to announce Chia’s Proof of Space competition. In Chia’s Proof of Space, rewards are given to farmers that can prove that they are allocating a portion of their disk space to farming Chia. In order to be used as a consensus method, Proof of Space is tied to Proof of Time. An open source implementation in C++ is available, that can be used as a starting point.

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