Who wants to upgrade their home appliances to mine crypto?

Last week a company called Canaan Creative, a major competitor to Bitmain, launched a television that can also mine Bitcoin. The Bitcoin generated by these machines can then be used to purchase content through Canaan's platform. This week, Bitmain also announced they have Wifi routers that can mine cryptocurrencies (Litecoin, Siacoin, and Dash):

The product specs:


(Source: Bitmain website)

Commentary on the profitability of the wifi miner

While the earning ability of these devices are questionable given the hashrate, the focus on home appliances is certain an interesting approach. The view on how mining hardware will evolve over time is rather split. Some thinks mining rigs should become smaller, quieter, friendlier, and hides in everyday items; some others think mining will become more industrial, concentrated, and power-dense. As David Vorick, the founder of Obelisk ASICs, pointed out on Decred Slack channel:


(For a longer conversation on this topic, listen to our podcast with the Obelisk team.)

What does this trend imply? Will the house appliance miners actually make mining more decentralized and accessible to average people? Or are they just scams mining giants dump on clueless consumers as the hardware competition become more fierce?

Technical Updates

Grin/Mimblewimble consensus governance update
(Grin Forum)

"The council should also decide on distributing excess funds to contributors in the Grin project. As measuring and assessing merit in each contribution is difficult to do fully objectively, the distribution will be done at the council’s discretion. It will be up to the council to decide on a fair and reasonable process to do so (including when distributing excess funds to council members)."

New faster z-enemy 1.15a Nvidia GPU miner with HEX support
(Crypto Mining Blog)

"The working principle of HEX is calculating the block hash with a pseudo-random sequence of 16 different algorithms (kernels): BLAKE / BMW / GROESTL / JH / KECCAK / SKEIN / LUFFA / CUBEHASH / SHAVITE / SIMD / ECHO / HAMSI / FUGUE / SHABAL / WHIRLPOOL / SHA2. The latest public release of z-enemy-1.15a has a fix for the difficulty and allows you to use maximum intensity of up to 25 in order to further increase the performance of HEX with another +7% to +15% if your GPUs can handle the extra load properly. If you are looking for new coins using new mining algorithms, then XDNA and HEX might be an interesting choice for you, though XDNA is actually not a new coin release, it has been available for a while, just the HEX algorithm is new."

SpiderOak warrant canary to be replaced by 'transparency report'
(BoingBoing, by Rob Beschizza)

"SpiderOak is a cloud backup service with a warrant canary: a formal statement that assured users that the company and its operators had never been made to secretly cooperate with the government, law enforcement or other surveilling authority. The canary reportedly disappeared this weekend, then reappeared, along with a statement saying it was being replaced by a 'transparency report.'"

The economics of hacking an election

"There are two assertions I'll make up front. First, the attacker—any attacker—is resource-limited. They may have vast resources, and in particular they may have more resources than the defenders—but they're still limited. Why? They'll throw enough resources at the problem to solve it, i.e., to hack the election, and use anything left over for the next problem, e.g., hacking the Brexit II referendum… There's always another target."

Experts criticize West Virginia's plan for smartphone voting
(arsTechnica, by Timothy B.Lee)

"Over the last decade, there has been a growing consensus that a voter-verified paper trail is essential to making the voting process secure and fully auditable. Electronic voting machines can be hacked, and there's no foolproof way to prevent or even detect attacks on voting machines. So experts argued that the paperless electronic voting machines many states adopted in the early 2000s posed a serious threat to the integrity of our election systems."

Voting on blockchain is terrifying

News & Commentary

Bitcoin, we don't expect new highs in 2018
(The Cryptoconomy Podcast)

Paranoia makes Bitcoin resilient

ICO funding continues to increase despite the market getting slaughtered

Report: Feds investigating whether Musk's buyout tweet broke the law
(arsTechnica, by Timothy B.Lee)

"Companies usually halt trading of their stock before announcing big news so shareholders can't later file lawsuits claiming they traded on incomplete or misleading information. For the same reason, normal companies are careful to release the full details on a proposal like this all at once instead of dribbling the information out one tweet at a time."


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