Ethereum update: ASICs and Ethereum
I’m interested to see again that there’s lots of talk about changing Ethereum’s PoW algorithm to exclude purpose-built mining hardware (usually described as ASICs but I’m not convinced that name is accurate).
The original intent behind the design of Ethereum’s ethash algorithm was to be resistant to ASICs by depending on repeated memory access. The theory being that to perform better on the algorithm you’d basically need better hardware, but there weren’t significant gains to be had just by making hardware tailored to Ethash.
Presumably then, the custom hardware now available for mining Ether is not actually application-specific (as in Application Specific Integrated Circuit, ASIC) but is generally optimised for performing memory-hard calculations.
In that case any tweak to Ethereum’s PoW algorithm will not get rid of this hardware, which will just be reconfigured for the new algorithm.
Am I wrong? Or do any of the people calling for an algorithm change know specifically what would be required?
Ethereum is a decentralized platform that runs smart contracts: applications that run exactly as programmed without any possibility of downtime, censorship, fraud or third-party interference.
Don’t forget to share the post if you love it !