Ethereum Security Lead Joins Effort To Oust Blockchain’s Big Miners
There is a strong movement building inside of the Ethereum network to block ASIC miners. As many users believe that the decentralization is important, they seem concerned that ASIC miners could centralize the decision on the network too much and, because of this, some people are waging a war against these big miners.
During a recent meeting, Martin Holst Swende, the security lead of the Ethereum Foundation, has affirmed that he supports the idea to take action against the ASIC miners of the Ethereum platform. He is now working to ensure that code changes are not able to disrupt the way that Ethereum works.
Swende is now aligned with many leading developers that believe that people should act to block ASIC mining chips and go back to mostly GPU-based mining, as it was originally intended. The main issue is that many developers believe that the ASIC chips may reduce the number of people participating in the network because it will not be profitable to mine ETH anymore.
A software called ProgPoW would be used to block the chips and would make the ASIC miners unusable, which could potentially prevent the development of this type of hardware to go forward. Swende believes that this will make for a “very good change” and intends to include this change as soon as possible on the ETH protocol.
He has also noted that, unlike other proposals for software upgrades, ProgPow would not affect any smart contract or the Ethereum Virtual Machine at all, so it would be a small change for the most important aspects of the network, he defends.
Because of this, Swende has defended the idea that this new change could be tested on a separate testbed, especially because the Ethereum will hard fork soon with the Constantinople upgrade, which has been in the works for quite some time now. The update will happen on October 9. This way, they could test it for as much time as necessary before deciding whether to continue with it. Also, the devs have also stated that the upgrade could reduce the cost of privacy on the Ethereum network.
Some Concerns Still Remain
Some core developers of the Ethereum network like Pawel Bylica and Alexey Akhunov have affirmed that the ProgPow proposal still have to explain better how it will be actually able to make everything that it promises. According to the developers, there is a lot of misinformation about the program and about how it actually works, which is definitely an issue.
One of the developers has affirmed that the main goal of the protocol is not exactly to be ASIC-resistant (which it is) because all GPUs are, in fact, ASIC miners, but the protocol will be tied up to work specifically well with a single type of ASIC, which will be the GPUs. This way, the cost for miners can be considerably lower.
Some other developers have emphasized that it is very important to support the project not to waste so many hours with it.