Privacy Focused Crypto Coin Grin to Vote on Changes to Their System-Wide Upgrades

Privacy focused crypto project Grin has announced that they will be voting on crucial changes to the upcoming hard fork. Grin, whose official launch was on January 15, 2019, is based on a linear inflation algorithm, where the total offer of the cryptocurrency is unlimited.

Grin is a cryptocurrency created by an anonymous development team, based on the blockchain technology of MimbleWimble, which is distinguished by hiding transactions completely and its scalability, a highly valued aspect in a currency with massive adoption prospects. All transactions are made through wallets that connect directly with each other. The transactions are made anonymous before registering in the blockchain.

John Tromp, a lead developer of Grin and the inventor of proof-of-work mining algorithm Cuckoo Cycle, said that there will be changes made to the hard-fork that is currently set to happen in mid-July. The proposed changes will be voted on by developers of the project in the upcoming weeks.

Cuckoo cycle is one of the most promising ASIC-resistant PoW algorithms which was originally applied as a measure to prevent email spams. With its unique design, it sees fit for GPU mining. It focuses more on memory use, meaning the solution time is bound to memory bandwidth rather than the raw processor or GPU speed. Unlike other PoW algorithms that require maxing out the capacity of your hardware that drains a lot of power which produces heat, a memory-bound algorithm like Cuckoo cycle require far less energy than most other GPU, CPU or ASIC-bound PoW algorithms.

Tromp says:

“The announcement of single chip ASICs for [Cuckatoo-31] has undermined our phase out schedule… which looks like it won’t be able to serve its original intended purpose of thwarting single chip ASICs in the foreseeable future.”

Notably, when the project started, Grin had the first mover’s advantage. To keep this, they agreed to have a hard-fork every 6-months and major algorithm changes every 2 years. Although this is an unsustainable stance against mining centralization, developers had agreed to slowly move to an ASIC-friendly version of Tromp’s Cuckoo Cycle called Cuckatoo31+.

Through this, ASIC miners will have enough time to optimize the mining algorithm. However, currently, 81% of Grin blocks are being mined using the ASIC-resistant variant of Tromp’s Cuckoo Cycle called Cuckaroo29. Cuckaroo31 will end on August 19th of next year and the following phase, Cuckoo32 will have a share of 55% of Grin blocks mined.

Tromp and David Vorick argue over the schedule of the hard-fork. Vorick says:

“We’ve demonstrated with our single-chip [Cuckatoo-31] miner that multi-chip designs are not competitive, and if the phase-out is not delayed, we will be producing a [Cuckatoo-32] single-chip design as well. We believe that the mining ecosystem for Grin would be better if it stayed at [Cuckatoo-31], where costs are lower and it’s easier for new competitors to get involved,”

To this Tromp says:

“Any change to [Cuckatoo31+] cannot take effect until at least 18 months into the future, unless agreed upon by all affected parties. I’m proposing to proceed with more caution, to take a wait and see approach. But also to keep our commitment for the next 18 months as ASIC manufacturers must be able to rely on that for investment decisions.”

Althouugh Vorick doesn’t agree on this proposition as he thinks that mining manufacturers are never upfront about the nature of their hardware.

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