Ethereum Foundation Partners With Filecoin To Provide Specialized Mining Hardware
On the 1st of November at Devcon, Prague, Ethereum Foundation researcher Justin Drake released introductory schemes for ASICs that are designed to support a forthcoming ethereum based technology called beacon chain.
Beacon Chain facilitates the transition of Ethereum into proof-of-stake and sharding concept. It basically connects the main blockchain and shard chains and it lets the main chain know which blocks from the shards need to be added over time. Once the main blockchain is validated through a proof-of-stake, it will always reside in the Beacon Chain and maintain a close connection to it.
The term ASIC used earlier might hold a different undertone to it than we are used to in the crypto ecosystem. The upcoming Ethereum 2.0 hardware doesn’t take part in a computationally-intensive process like traditional mining. Instead, this newly developed mining equipment will participate in a low-cost procedure called Verifiable Delay Function(VDF.)
VDFs take a prescribed time to compute, even on a parallel computer, yet produce a unique output that can be efficiently and publicly verified. They have a wide variety of decentralized systems: public randomness beacons, leader election in consensus protocols, and proofs of replication.
However, this project doesn't come cheap. Drake expects the entire project to take somewhere between $20-$30 million to develop. Just the cost of research and development is thought to be $15-$25 million. An additional $5 million will be required to construct 5,000 machines.
Notably, in September 2017, Filecoin had raised $257 million in ICO, which at that time was the biggest ICO ever done. For the development of this project, the Ethereum Foundation and Filecoin will be dividing the cost 50-50. Other projects interested can also participate with the two companies which can drive down the burden of expenses on these companies.
Drake is particularly excited about the brand new open-sourced ASICs, which hasn’t really been done before.