Howard Chu is a musician. He’s also a dedicated developer on the Monero network, who spends most of his time trying to find ways to take ASICS out of the crypto mining sphere.
Coindesk’s piece on the subject talks about how Chu is working towards making the mining space fair again, while also mentioning the importance of the creativity that software developers put into the algorithms that they make.
In terms of the first part of this statement, what it all comes down to is that Chu has created an algorithm that he thinks will keep ASICS away for good. If this turns out to be true, then his creation just might be the best thing for the crypto space, in terms of upholding its ideals of decentralization.
Before jumping into exactly what his creation is, it is first important to understand something very specific about the Blockchain space. Overall, the creation of the bitcoin network was not just about decentralizing our currency system.
It can also be argued that at the same time, it was also created with the aim of making the same system fairer for the average person. To further clarify where this goal began would require only a quick look at Satoshi’s original white paper, in which it is said that our money system should be fair in terms of all users owning the funds they have access to, as well as in terms of all users having a similarly even chance at earning currency through cryptocurrency mining.
Despite this, crypto mining has evolved with its own level of centralization, which involves ASICs.
If you are not well versed on the current crypto mining climate, then before we go any further with this discussion, it is important to first understand what an ASIC is. When considered in the context of its usage for mining, it is easiest to think of an Application Specific Integrated Circuit as a highly powered Graphics Processing Unit or Graphics Card.
Think of something so highly powered that essentially nothing else stands a chance when compared to it.
When ASICS are used at scale by miners or mining firms with deep pockets like Bitmain, situations like one company, which is effectively one user, attaining half of the network’s hash power become commonplace.
Howard Chu’s argument appears to be that unless we find a solution to stop the rise of ASICs, we will be faced, time and time again with situations like this. In response to this, he has recently come up with a new approach to Proof of Work, called RandomJS.
This proprietary algorithm gets its name from the fact that Chu has designed it to use random code, which apparently refers to the practice of switching a consensus algorithm’s code enough to prevent ASICs from being compatible with it. According to Chu, this is because ASICS need a cryptocurrency network’s consensus algorithm to stay static in order to attach themselves to it.
All in all, as networks consider RandomJS, its success will depend on all of their users adopting it, above the current Proof of Work algorithms that these networks run. If, on the other hand, a large amount of resistance comes to pass, then it just might fall to the wayside instead of save Crypto mining, like Chu wants it to do.
By: BGN Editorial Staff