Primecoin is an innovative cryptocurrency, a form of digital currency secured by cryptography and issued through a decentralized mining market. Derived from Satoshi Nakamoto's Bitcoin, Primecoin introduces an unique form of proof-of-work based on searching for prime numbers.
IPFS— The New-gen Tech Revolution, or Another Illusion?
Founded in 2014, after 6 years of R & D as well as its expansion, and after nearly a year of extensive testing and preparation, IPFS (Interplanetary File System) was officially launched on the afternoon of October 15, 2020, UTC time. 12 hours after the mainnet went online, Its token price fluctuated between 50~70 USD/FIL. However, panic and pessimism began to spread between the IPFS community and FIL token holders. Based on the total amount of FIL (2 billion) and the unit price of 50 US dollars estimation, its market value has exceeded 100 billion US dollars, second only to BTC. As such a mega valued IPFS/FIL went online, if there is no enough application to support, the selling pressure after the FIL is gradually unlocked will become huge. According to calculations, on the first day of the mainnet launch, there will be 239,000 FILs to be sold. Assuming that the unit price is 30 USD, the released circulation will be 8 million USD. Assuming the unit price remains unchanged, the market will usher in a similar value on the 10th day. With a release amount of 15 million USD, it is very likely that the corresponding token price can be supported. IPFS is a network transmission protocol designed to create persistent and distributed storage and sharing of files. In terms of its current active projects and companies, IPFS has added more than 5 billion files, involving multiple industries, and there are also many blockchain companies using this technology. When the IPFS mainnet and its Filecoin goes online, the market value will be based on the applications brought by the IPFS network. After Bitcoin and Ethereum, Filecoin is an upstart in the blockchain industry with a revolutionary technological breakthrough. The market predicts that Filecoin’s market value will surpass Bitcoin. Now let us analyze this project together that was given high hopes: IPFS major features and disadvantages The basic application of IPFS, Filecoin’s financial attributes and its incentive mechanism make it a very exciting global collaborative open source project. On this basis, the data of all mankind is stored in the IPFS network, and no one can tamper with it. This magnificent scene provides at least three values for us:
It creates a storage network service that is license-free and trust-free. This is very important. When you want to access a digital file, you don’t need to get approval or filing from any organization, and strict certification. As for non-centralized trust, it does not require user to trust the supplier that provides storage services, which significantly reduces the cost.
The successful application of IPFS will most likely enable all idle storage resources in the world to be gathered to form a network and be effectively used, and such a network is unprecedented.
Through such a model, network redundancy can be effectively reduced, and the complete separation of data can be achieved. There is no need to store files in a fixed location, only the content needs to be stored in an IPFS and Filecoin network.
However, Plentiful in ideal yet bony in reality. The design flaws of the IPFS project make it difficult to truly apply in the practical environment. Its design flaws mainly focus in the following aspects:
Cannot support hot data storage.
Based on the principle of data timeliness, the higher the frequency of data access, the greater the value of the data possess. At present, IPFS only supports cold data storage scenarios. The lack of support for network transmission makes it impossible to establish a transmission network for hot data, which means the lack of the most valuable support for the network.
The disaster tolerance mechanism is missing.
Disaster tolerance means that when an IT system stops working due to an accident (such as fire, earthquake, etc.), the entire application system can be switched to another location so that the system functions can continue to work normally. IPFS / Filecoin does not provide reliable disaster recovery and recovery mechanisms for storage users. Storage miners arecentrally handling disaster recovery backup and recovery works, resulting in an increase in storage space redundancy by 2–3 times.
The storage performance is reduced by more than 60 times.
The IPFS data verification mechanism is too ideal and complex, and its storage performance is more than 60 times lower than that of a traditional centralized storage system. 1TB files usually need to be verified for more than 10 hours and cannot be stored normally and efficiently.
Centralized technology architecture.
IPFS requires pretty advanced hardware, which leads to a very high threshold for joining its storage network. At present, only specialized storage devices can join the IPFS network as storage nodes. This means that IPFS initially advertised to users that connecting ordinary idle storage and reducing storage costs, has become a flubdub. It is difficult to store the entire network in a centralized structure in a disguised form, which cannot greatly reduce the storage cost of the entire network and ensure the security of the entire network.
Due to the lack of the decentralized governance mechanism, its governance is too despotic, leading to a certain harm to the participated communities.
The above are the main obstacles currently hindering IPFS and Filecoin. The good news is that some of them can be improved and perfected, while some are design mechanism problems and cannot be fixed. Let’s take a look at another project initiated in the tech circle in 2017 — -HOP: What is HOP The HOP protocol provides a decentralized and completely anonymous traffic service for people all over the world based on block chain. HOP combines P2P network transmission and block chain technology to establish a block chain micro-payment protocol based on the block chain transmission encryption protocol between P2P network bandwidth contributors and bandwidth users, and merge it into traffic mining. In the mining pool side, the whole protocol is built on the main network, which has Micro Payment and mining functions. In addition, HOP also supports traffic mining of ERC20 in any currency. So far, HOP is the only protocol that combines the above functions and is officially available in commercial application. It can provide terminal nodes for secure access to decentralized networks. HOP features and comparison with IPFS HOP and IPFS have certain similarities. The following table is a comparison of the two projects in terms of technology and application characteristics: https://preview.redd.it/d4klovzngmt51.png?width=1178&format=png&auto=webp&s=f14f0b2290430f6861f6da27f2d1e47ed196b741 Why HOP might be a phenomenal project in the future Compared with the disadvantages of IPFS which are not supporting for hot data storage, low storage efficiency, low disaster tolerance and the high threshold of providing storage capacity, The advantages of HOP are summarized as follows:
High operating efficiency.
The smart micro-payment system runs payments with unlimited TPS, and the efficiency is 90% higher than Ethereum.
High level of open source. Supports all ERC-20 token access.
Low threshold of participation.
Any participant who has a certain fundamental knowledge of computer science and network technology can set up mining pools and miners.
It can be combined with Starlink satellites, repeaters, sim/esim cards and mobile phones in actual application scenarios to form a next-generation distributed interconnected communication network globally. At present, most of the participants of HOP are top tier tech specialists, famous investors and politicians with global vision. We believe that projects like HOP, due to the open source and far-sighted technical foundation, which can not only achieve internal self-consistent circulation, but also integrate well with external ecology. Just as water conservancy is invisible, HOP has unlimited inclusiveness and scalability, and has a strong platform-level vitality! We are looking forward to the accumulation of HOP, bringing a revolution in technology and applications to the blockchain and the practical universe!
Syscoin Platform’s Great Reddit Scaling Bake-off Proposal
https://preview.redd.it/rqt2dldyg8e51.jpg?width=1044&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=777ae9d4fbbb54c3540682b72700fc4ba3de0a44 We are excited to participate and present Syscoin Platform's ideal characteristics and capabilities towards a well-rounded Reddit Community Points solution! Our scaling solution for Reddit Community Points involves 2-way peg interoperability with Ethereum. This will provide a scalable token layer built specifically for speed and high volumes of simple value transfers at a very low cost, while providing sovereign ownership and onchain finality. Token transfers scale by taking advantage of a globally sorting mempool that provides for probabilistically secure assumptions of “as good as settled”. The opportunity here for token receivers is to have an app-layer interactivity on the speed/security tradeoff (99.9999% assurance within 10 seconds). We call this Z-DAG, and it achieves high-throughput across a mesh network topology presently composed of about 2,000 geographically dispersed full-nodes. Similar to Bitcoin, however, these nodes are incentivized to run full-nodes for the benefit of network security, through a bonded validator scheme. These nodes do not participate in the consensus of transactions or block validation any differently than other nodes and therefore do not degrade the security model of Bitcoin’s validate first then trust, across every node. Each token transfer settles on-chain. The protocol follows Bitcoin core policies so it has adequate code coverage and protocol hardening to be qualified as production quality software. It shares a significant portion of Bitcoin’s own hashpower through merged-mining. This platform as a whole can serve token microtransactions, larger settlements, and store-of-value in an ideal fashion, providing probabilistic scalability whilst remaining decentralized according to Bitcoin design. It is accessible to ERC-20 via a permissionless and trust-minimized bridge that works in both directions. The bridge and token platform are currently available on the Syscoin mainnet. This has been gaining recent attention for use by loyalty point programs and stablecoins such as Binance USD.
Syscoin Foundation identified a few paths for Reddit to leverage this infrastructure, each with trade-offs. The first provides the most cost-savings and scaling benefits at some sacrifice of token autonomy. The second offers more preservation of autonomy with a more narrow scope of cost savings than the first option, but savings even so. The third introduces more complexity than the previous two yet provides the most overall benefits. We consider the third as most viable as it enables Reddit to benefit even while retaining existing smart contract functionality. We will focus on the third option, and include the first two for good measure.
Distribution, burns and user-to-user transfers of Reddit Points are entirely carried out on the Syscoin network. This full-on approach to utilizing the Syscoin network provides the most scalability and transaction cost benefits of these scenarios. The tradeoff here is distribution and subscription handling likely migrating away from smart contracts into the application layer.
The Reddit Community Points ecosystem can continue to use existing smart contracts as they are used today on the Ethereum mainchain. Users migrate a portion of their tokens to Syscoin, the scaling network, to gain much lower fees, scalability, and a proven base layer, without sacrificing sovereign ownership. They would use Syscoin for user-to-user transfers. Tips redeemable in ten seconds or less, a high-throughput relay network, and onchain settlement at a block target of 60 seconds.
Integration between Matic Network and Syscoin Platform - similar to Syscoin’s current integration with Ethereum - will provide Reddit Community Points with EVM scalability (including the Memberships ERC777 operator) on the Matic side, and performant simple value transfers, robust decentralized security, and sovereign store-of-value on the Syscoin side. It’s “the best of both worlds”. The trade-off is more complex interoperability.
Syscoin + Matic Integration
Matic and Blockchain Foundry Inc, the public company formed by the founders of Syscoin, recently entered a partnership for joint research and business development initiatives. This is ideal for all parties as Matic Network and Syscoin Platform provide complementary utility. Syscoin offers characteristics for sovereign ownership and security based on Bitcoin’s time-tested model, and shares a significant portion of Bitcoin’s own hashpower. Syscoin’s focus is on secure and scalable simple value transfers, trust-minimized interoperability, and opt-in regulatory compliance for tokenized assets rather than scalability for smart contract execution. On the other hand, Matic Network can provide scalable EVM for smart contract execution. Reddit Community Points can benefit from both. Syscoin + Matic integration is actively being explored by both teams, as it is helpful to Reddit, Ethereum, and the industry as a whole.
Total cost for these 100k transactions: $0.63 USD See the live fee comparison for savings estimation between transactions on Ethereum and Syscoin. Below is a snapshot at time of writing: ETH price: $318.55 ETH gas price: 55.00 Gwei ($0.37) Syscoin price: $0.11 Snapshot of live fee comparison chart Z-DAG provides a more efficient fee-market. A typical Z-DAG transaction costs 0.0000582 SYS. Tokens can be safely redeemed/re-spent within seconds or allowed to settle on-chain beforehand. The costs should remain about this low for microtransactions. Syscoin will achieve further reduction of fees and even greater scalability with offchain payment channels for assets, with Z-DAG as a resilience fallback. New payment channel technology is one of the topics under research by the Syscoin development team with our academic partners at TU Delft. In line with the calculation in the Lightning Networks white paper, payment channels using assets with Syscoin Core will bring theoretical capacity for each person on Earth (7.8 billion) to have five on-chain transactions per year, per person, without requiring anyone to enter a fee market (aka “wait for a block”). This exceeds the minimum LN expectation of two transactions per person, per year; one to exist on-chain and one to settle aggregated value.
Tools to simplify using Syscoin Bridge as a service with dapps and wallets will be released some time after implementation of Syscoin Core 4.2. These will be based upon the same processes which are automated in the current live Sysethereum Dapp that is functioning with the Syscoin mainnet.
The Syscoin Ethereum Bridge is secured by Agent nodes participating in a decentralized and incentivized model that involves roles of Superblock challengers and submitters. This model is open to participation. The benefits here are trust-minimization, permissionless-ness, and potentially less legal/regulatory red-tape than interop mechanisms that involve liquidity providers and/or trading mechanisms. The trade-off is that due to the decentralized nature there are cross-chain settlement times of one hour to cross from Ethereum to Syscoin, and three hours to cross from Syscoin to Ethereum. We are exploring ways to reduce this time while maintaining decentralization via zkp. Even so, an “instant bridge” experience could be provided by means of a third-party liquidity mechanism. That option exists but is not required for bridge functionality today. Typically bridges are used with batch value, not with high frequencies of smaller values, and generally it is advantageous to keep some value on both chains for maximum availability of utility. Even so, the cross-chain settlement time is good to mention here.
Ethereum -> Syscoin: Matic or Ethereum transaction fee for bridge contract interaction, negligible Syscoin transaction fee for minting tokens Syscoin -> Ethereum: Negligible Syscoin transaction fee for burning tokens, 0.01% transaction fee paid to Bridge Agent in the form of the ERC-20, Matic or Ethereum transaction fee for contract interaction.
Zero-Confirmation Directed Acyclic Graph is an instant settlement protocol that is used as a complementary system to proof-of-work (PoW) in the confirmation of Syscoin service transactions. In essence, a Z-DAG is simply a directed acyclic graph (DAG) where validating nodes verify the sequential ordering of transactions that are received in their memory pools. Z-DAG is used by the validating nodes across the network to ensure that there is absolute consensus on the ordering of transactions and no balances are overflowed (no double-spends).
Unique fee-market that is more efficient for microtransaction redemption and settlement
Uses decentralized means to enable tokens with value transfer scalability that is comparable or exceeds that of credit card networks
Provides high throughput and secure fulfillment even if blocks are full
Probabilistic and interactive
99.9999% security assurance within 10 seconds
Can serve payment channels as a resilience fallback that is faster and lower-cost than falling-back directly to a blockchain
Each Z-DAG transaction also settles onchain through Syscoin Core at 60-second block target using SHA-256 Proof of Work consensus
Z-DAG enables the ideal speed/security tradeoff to be determined per use-case in the application layer. It minimizes the sacrifice required to accept and redeem fast transfers/payments while providing more-than-ample security for microtransactions. This is supported on the premise that a Reddit user receiving points does need security yet generally doesn’t want nor need to wait for the same level of security as a nation-state settling an international trade debt. In any case, each Z-DAG transaction settles onchain at a block target of 60 seconds.
Syscoin 3.0 White Paper (4.0 white paper is pending. For improved scalability and less blockchain bloat, some features of v3 no longer exist in current v4: Specifically Marketplace Offers, Aliases, Escrow, Certificates, Pruning, Encrypted Messaging)
16MB block bandwidth per minute assuming segwit witness carrying transactions, and transactions ~200 bytes on average
SHA256 merge mined with Bitcoin
UTXO asset layer, with base Syscoin layer sharing identical security policies as Bitcoin Core
Z-DAG on asset layer, bridge to Ethereum on asset layer
On-chain scaling with prospect of enabling enterprise grade reliable trustless payment processing with on/offchain hybrid solution
Focus only on Simple Value Transfers. MVP of blockchain consensus footprint is balances and ownership of them. Everything else can reduce data availability in exchange for scale (Ethereum 2.0 model). We leave that to other designs, we focus on transfers.
Future integrations of MAST/Taproot to get more complex value transfers without trading off trustlessness or decentralization.
Zero-knowledge Proofs are a cryptographic new frontier. We are dabbling here to generalize the concept of bridging and also verify the state of a chain efficiently. We also apply it in our Digital Identity projects at Blockchain Foundry (a publicly traded company which develops Syscoin softwares for clients). We are also looking to integrate privacy preserving payment channels for off-chain payments through zkSNARK hub & spoke design which does not suffer from the HTLC attack vectors evident on LN. Much of the issues plaguing Lightning Network can be resolved using a zkSNARK design whilst also providing the ability to do a multi-asset payment channel system. Currently we found a showstopper attack (American Call Option) on LN if we were to use multiple-assets. This would not exist in a system such as this.
Web3 and mobile wallets are under active development by Blockchain Foundry Inc as WebAssembly applications and expected for release not long after mainnet deployment of Syscoin Core 4.2. Both of these will be multi-coin wallets that support Syscoin, SPTs, Ethereum, and ERC-20 tokens. The Web3 wallet will provide functionality similar to Metamask. Syscoin Platform and tokens are already integrated with Blockbook. Custom hardware wallet support currently exists via ElectrumSys. First-class HW wallet integration through apps such as Ledger Live will exist after 4.2. Current supported wallets Syscoin Spark Desktop Syscoin-Qt
The One Thing EVERYONE Must Know About the Dev Funding Plan: IT'S COMPLETELY FREE.
sigh I get so tired of having to stop working to put out a post explaining issues. If anyone else wants to join in I could use help. (actually I've seen Jonald F. do this before too, so thanks JF!) Things are bad when even developers don't understand what's going on. So I'll try to clearly explain an important point on the Dev Funding Plan (DFP from now on) for the community: it's completely free. Yet we still get panicked posts saying Please Save Us from the TAX!!! Somebody Help! You may be for or against the DFP, but either way please at least understand what you're forming an opinion on. Let's start from the beginning. We know Bitcoin works on blocks and block coin rewards. The block reward, which started at 50 coins per block, and cuts in half approximately every 4 years, serves two purposes: it's a fair way to bring coins into circulation, but more importantly it provides security for the network. For simplicity, please think of "security" as being measured in power bars. When the network first started, with just Satoshi and Hal Finney, there was 1 power bar. This power bar was made up of the electricity their combined computer hardware used to find blocks. They were the first miners. Bitcoin uses a difficulty level to adjust how hard or easy it is to find blocks. This level is important for a key reason: we want the inflation rate of coins (how fast they come into circulation) to stay about the same, regardless how many miners (computing power) suddenly comes online. If the difficulty is set at super easy, but suddenly a super computer comes online that computer can gobble up thousands of coins in minutes if not seconds, creating massive rapid inflation. So the first thing to understand is that due to the Difficulty Level Adjustment the rate of coins coming into circulation will always stay about the same, regardless how many miners join or leave the network. Getting back to power bars. So the point of Bitcoin is there is no center, no fixed authority. The problem is we still need a decision made about which chain is valid. This is where proof-of-work comes in. Satoshi's fairly brilliant solution to a consensus decision, with no leader, was to simply look for the longest chain (technically the chain with most hashing work). The reasoning was: as there are far more ordinary people than there are governments and dictators a Bitcoin supported by the all the world's people should always be able to muster more hashrate than even rich governments. So Bitcoin began and people saw the brilliance: even with a weak power bar level of 1 (a couple computers), Bitcoin was safe from 51% attacks and attacking govs competing for control of the chain because a super low hashrate meant Bitcoin wasn't popular and govs wouldn't bother paying attention. By the time Bitcoin was big enough for govs to worry about attacking it should also have so many participants the power bar level would be far higher, providing strong defense. Let's say the ideal power bar level is 50,000. At this level no government on earth has enough resources to beat the grassroots network. We hear people brag about how much security BTC has. However, the marketcap for all of BTC is about $160B. Countries like the U.S. and China have GDP measured in many trillions; a trillion is 1,000 billion. Does 160B really seem untouchable? For numeric comparison the main U.S. federal food assistance program cost the government $70B in 2016, representing about 2% of the budget. So the entirety of the BTC market cap is about twice the size of one welfare program, representing 2% of the overall budget. Where should we place the current security power bars if we want guaranteed safety from a determined U.S. gov? If 50,000 is guaranteed safe we're far from it. I'd say BTC is more like 5,000. That's still pretty decent. Of course, BCH split from BTC... and didn't carry over all the miners and accompanying security. That's not an immediate concern because if BTC isn't on government's radar yet BCH sure isn't. However, that doesn't mean BCH doesn't need security from hostile forces. It's still a valuable network and needs defenses. Where would we put power bars for BCH? If BTC is 5,000 and BCH only has 3% of that hashrate then BCH has just 150. That's it. How the Developer Funding Plan Works Back to the DFP. What this says is as a community we agree to break off a piece of the block reward and instead of giving 100% to miners we give a small percent to developers. If each block is 10 coins and the price is $300 then winning a block means winning $3,000. Of course that's not all profit because miners have electricity and other expenses to pay before calculating profit. So if we reduce the portion of the miner reward by 10% so they get just 9 coins per block yet the price stays the same what happens? It means miners receive $2,700 for the same effort. We've just made it more expensive to mine BCH from the point of view of miners. What would any miner then rationally do? Seek profitability elsewhere if available. Suddenly BTC SHA256 hashing looks slightly more attractive so they'll go there. Hashrate leaves BCH and goes to BTC, but the key important point is BOTH chains have a difficulty adjustment algorithm which adjusts to account for rising or lowering miners overall, which keeps the coin inflation rate steady. This means BTC total hashrate rises (more miners compete for BTC) and its Difficulty Level rises accordingly, so the same rate of BTC pumps out; on BCH total hashrate falls (less miners compete for BCH) and its Difficulty falls, so the same rate of BCH pumps out. Inflation remains about the same on both coins so the price of both coins doesn't change any, beyond what it normally does based on news/events etc. So what difference is there? The difference is total network security. Hashrate totals have changed. BTC gains more miner securing hashrate while BCH loses it. So BTC goes from 5,000 to say 5,100 power bars. BCH goes from about 150 to 140. Does any of that matter in the grand scheme of things? Not in the slightest. Part of the reason is due to our emergency circumstances with BCH we had to rework our security model. Our primary defense is an idea I came up with, which BitcoinABC implemented, saying it's not sheer hashpower that dictates what chain we follow. We won't replace a chain we're working on if a new one suddenly appears if it means changing more than 10 blocks deep of history. This prevents all the threatening hashrate hanging over our heads from mining a secret chain and creating havoc unleashing it causing 10+ confimed txs to be undone, while exchanges, gambling sites etc. have long since paid out real world money. Switching $6M worth of block rewards from mining to devs just means we lose a bit of hashrate security, while we gain those funds for development. Nothing more. Nobody holding BCH pays in the form of inflation or any other way. It costs literally NOTHING BECAUSE The block reward is ALREADY ALLOCATED. It will EITHER go 100% to mining security if we do nothing, or go to both miners and devs if the plan is put into effect. Hopefully this helps. :) TL;DR: we switch security which we don't really need, for developer funding which we do.
[Researh] In 2017 bitcoin network consumed 5 TWh of energy, in 2018 – 29 TWh, in 2019 – 43 TWh. Banking industry consumes 74 TWh per year.
Electricity consumed by bitcoin network has been constantly and noticeably increasing. During the past years the consumption reached such big a scale, that it can be compared to electricity consumption of some countries, according to BlockchainAnalytics.pro research. The world’s first cryptocurrency is steadily becoming more popular and expensive every year. This motivates more individuals and companies to enter the mining business to earn a bitcoin share.
More miners, more efficient equipment
To validate a block of transactions and receive a reward, miners compete with each other by solving a deliberately complicated mathematical task, or puzzle. Those miners who own more computing power (hashrate) have more chances to win the competition. This incentivizes miners to buy more powerful equipment that consumes more electricity. At the same time, mining equipment efficiency is constantly improving, and with time less electricity is required to produce the same hashrate. This factor allows to slow down the increasing demand for electricity. For example, in 2016 Bitmain, world’s largest manufacturer of mining equipment, launched the legendary Antminer S9, which consumed 100 watts to produce one terahash per second, or 100 W/TH/s. The best modification of Antminer S15, released in 2018, consumed 57 W/TH/s. Currently, the most efficient Antminer S17 consumes only 40 W/TH/s. https://preview.redd.it/gh343l3p09j41.png?width=930&format=png&auto=webp&s=e350c1e7832e37c1e3c3aeac974428cca7f0f874 It is assumed that the market competition compels manufacturers to keep up with each other in developing more efficient hardware. If some manufacturer brings next-generation chips to market, other manufacturers start to produce chips with the same characteristics at about the same time. On the other hand, new miners are joining the network, thus increasing the hashrate. So the demand for electricity continues to grow. Also, it can be noticed later that the electricity consumption chart is similar to that of hashrate chart. https://preview.redd.it/3k32ci6q09j41.png?width=930&format=png&auto=webp&s=e70f600419bcbc9e7e82506b5f12bf4da6f00584
The incremental volume of electricity consumption is calculated by multiplying newly added hashrate by the best mining efficiency available at that moment. The sum of incremental volumes represents cumulative amount of electricity consumed by bitcoin network. The metric is expressed in terawatt-hours (TWh). To get annualized volume in terawatt-hours we multiply the consumption by 24 hours and 365 days. A 100-day moving average was applied to hashrate to make the final result less dependent on the short-term hashrate fluctuations. Assumptions, used in this study, are very conservative. It means that the results are in the lower limit of the range of possible volumes, and the actual electricity consumption can be higher. A detailed explanation and interactive charts are provided here: https://www.blockchainanalytics.pro/btc/electricity-consumption/ https://preview.redd.it/jol3703r09j41.png?width=929&format=png&auto=webp&s=252d4d67ff6882bb32ad63238537a41305719f05
Currently, annualized electricity consumption in bitcoin network is 57 TWh. To help readers get an idea of how much electricity the bitcoin network consumes, a comparison with some countries is provided alongside. Portugal consumes 49 TWh per year, Romania – 50 TWh, Czech Republic – 59 TWh. Some more numbers for comparison:
Your Guide to Monero, and Why It Has Great Potential
/////Your Guide to Monero, and Why It Has Great Potential/////
Marketing. It's a dirty word for most members of the Monero community. It is also one of the most divisive words in the Monero community. Yet, the lack of marketing is one of the most frustrating things for many newcomers. This is what makes this an unusual post from a member of the Monero community. This post is an unabashed and unsolicited analyzation of why I believe Monero to have great potential. Below I have attempted to outline different reasons why Monero has great potential, beginning with upcoming developments and use cases, to broader economic motives, speculation, and key issues for it to overcome. I encourage you to discuss and criticise my musings, commenting below if you feel necessary to do so.
Bulletproofs - A Reduction in Transaction Sizes and Fees Since the introduction of Ring Confidential Transactions (Ring CT), transaction amounts have been hidden in Monero, albeit at the cost of increased transaction fees and sizes. In order to mitigate this issue, Bulletproofs will soon be added to reduce both fees and transaction size by 80% to 90%. This is great news for those transacting smaller USD amounts as people commonly complained Monero's fees were too high! Not any longer though! More information can be found here. Bulletproofs are already working on the Monero testnet, and developers were aiming to introduce them in March 2018, however it could be delayed in order to ensure everything is tried and tested. Multisig Multisig has recently been merged! Mulitsig, also called multisignature, is the requirement for a transaction to have two or more signatures before it can be executed. Multisig transactions and addresses are indistinguishable from normal transactions and addresses in Monero, and provide more security than single-signature transactions. It is believed this will lead to additional marketplaces and exchanges to supporting Monero. Kovri Kovri is an implementation of the Invisible Internet Project (I2P) network. Kovri uses both garlic encryption and garlic routing to create a private, protected overlay-network across the internet. This overlay-network provides users with the ability to effectively hide their geographical location and internet IP address. The good news is Kovri is under heavy development and will be available soon. Unlike other coins' false privacy claims, Kovri is a game changer as it will further elevate Monero as the king of privacy. Mobile Wallets There is already a working Android Wallet called Monerujo available in the Google Play Store. X Wallet is an IOS mobile wallet. One of the X Wallet developers recently announced they are very, very close to being listed in the Apple App Store, however are having some issues with getting it approved. The official Monero IOS and Android wallets, along with the MyMonero IOS and Android wallets, are also almost ready to be released, and can be expected very soon. Hardware Wallets Hardware wallets are currently being developed and nearing completion. Because Monero is based on the CryptoNote protocol, it means it requires unique development in order to allow hardware wallet integration. The Ledger Nano S will be adding Monero support by the end of Q1 2018. There is a recent update here too. Even better, for the first time ever in cryptocurrency history, the Monero community banded together to fund the development of an exclusive Monero Hardware Wallet, and will be available in Q2 2018, costing only about $20! In addition, the CEO of Trezor has offered a 10BTC bounty to whoever can provide the software to allow Monero integration. Someone can be seen to already be working on that here. TAILS Operating System Integration Monero is in the progress of being packaged in order for it to be integrated into TAILS and ready to use upon install. TAILS is the operating system popularised by Edward Snowden and is commonly used by those requiring privacy such as journalists wanting to protect themselves and sources, human-right defenders organizing in repressive contexts, citizens facing national emergencies, domestic violence survivors escaping from their abusers, and consequently, darknet market users. In the meantime, for those users who wish to use TAILS with Monero, u/Electric_sheep01 has provided Sheep's Noob guide to Monero GUI in Tails 3.2, which is a step-by-step guide with screenshots explaining how to setup Monero in TAILS, and is very easy to follow. Mandatory Hardforks Unlike other coins, Monero receives a protocol upgrade every 6 months in March and September. Think of it as a Consensus Protocol Update. Monero's hard forks ensure quality development takes place, while preventing political or ideological issues from hindering progress. When a hardfork occurs, you simply download and use the new daemon version, and your existing wallet files and copy of the blockchain remain compatible. This reddit post provides more information. Dynamic fees Many cryptocurrencies have an arbitrary block size limit. Although Monero has a limit, it is adaptive based on the past 100 blocks. Similarly, fees change based on transaction volume. As more transactions are processed on the Monero network, the block size limit slowly increases and the fees slowly decrease. The opposite effect also holds true. This means that the more transactions that take place, the cheaper the fees! Tail Emission and Inflation There will be around 18.4 million Monero mined at the end of May 2022. However, tail emission will kick in after that which is 0.6 XMR, so it has no fixed limit. Gundamlancer explains that Monero's "main emission curve will issue about 18.4 million coins to be mined in approximately 8 years. (more precisely 18.132 Million coins by ca. end of May 2022) After that, a constant "tail emission" of 0.6 XMR per 2-minutes block (modified from initially equivalent 0.3 XMR per 1-minute block) will create a sub-1% perpetual inflatio starting with 0.87% yearly inflation around May 2022) to prevent the lack of incentives for miners once a currency is not mineable anymore. Monero Research Lab Monero has a group of anonymous/pseudo-anonymous university academics actively researching, developing, and publishing academic papers in order to improve Monero. See here and here. The Monero Research Lab are acquainted with other members of cryptocurrency academic community to ensure when new research or technology is uncovered, it can be reviewed and decided upon whether it would be beneficial to Monero. This ensures Monero will always remain a leading cryptocurrency. A recent end of 2017 update from a MRL researcher can be found here.
///Monero's Technology - Rising Above The Rest///
Monero Has Already Proven Itself To Be Private, Secure, Untraceable, and Trustless Monero is the only private, untraceable, trustless, secure and fungible cryptocurrency. Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are TRACEABLE through the use of blockchain analytics, and has lead to the prosecution of numerous individuals, such as the alleged Alphabay administrator Alexandre Cazes. In the Forfeiture Complaint which detailed the asset seizure of Alexandre Cazes, the anonymity capabilities of Monero were self-demonstrated by the following statement of the officials after the AlphaBay shutdown: "In total, from CAZES' wallets and computer agents took control of approximately $8,800,000 in Bitcoin, Ethereum, Monero and Zcash, broken down as follows: 1,605.0503851 Bitcoin, 8,309.271639 Ethereum, 3,691.98 Zcash, and an unknown amount of Monero". Privacy CANNOT BE OPTIONAL and must be at a PROTOCOL LEVEL. With Monero, privacy is mandatory, so that everyone gets the benefits of privacy without any transactions standing out as suspicious. This is the reason Darknet Market places are moving to Monero, and will never use Verge, Zcash, Dash, Pivx, Sumo, Spectre, Hush or any other coins that lack good privacy. Peter Todd (who was involved in the Zcash trusted setup ceremony) recently reiterated his concerns of optional privacy after Jeffrey Quesnelle published his recent paper stating 31.5% of Zcash transactions may be traceable, and that only ~1% of the transactions are pure privacy transactions (i.e., z -> z transactions). When the attempted private transactions stand out like a sore thumb there is no privacy, hence why privacy cannot be optional. In addition, in order for a cryptocurrency to truly be private, it must not be controlled by a centralised body, such as a company or organisation, because it opens it up to government control and restrictions. This is no joke, but Zcash is supported by DARPA and the Israeli government!. Monero provides a stark contrast compared to other supposed privacy coins, in that Monero does not have a rich list! With all other coins, you can view wallet balances on the blockexplorers. You can view Monero's non-existent rich list here to see for yourself. I will reiterate here that Monero is TRUSTLESS. You don't need to rely on anyone else to protect your privacy, or worry about others colluding to learn more about you. No one can censor your transaction or decide to intervene. Monero is immutable, unlike Zcash, in which the lead developer Zooko publicly tweeted the possibility of providing a backdoor for authorities to trace transactions. To Zcash's demise, Zooko famously tweeted:
" And by the way, I think we can successfully make Zcash too traceable for criminals like WannaCry, but still completely private & fungible. …"
Ethereum's track record of immutability is also poor. Ethereum was supposed to be an immutable blockchain ledger, however after the DAO hack this proved to not be the case. A 2016 article on Saintly Law summarised the problematic nature of Ethereum's leadership and blockchain intervention:
" Many ethereum and blockchain advocates believe that the intervention was the wrong move to make in this situation. Smart contracts are meant to be self-executing, immutable and free from disturbance by organisations and intermediaries. Yet the building block of all smart contracts, the code, is inherently imperfect. This means that the technology is vulnerable to the same malicious hackers that are targeting businesses and governments. It is also clear that the large scale intervention after the DAO hack could not and would not likely be taken in smaller transactions, as they greatly undermine the viability of the cryptocurrency and the technology."
Monero provides Fungibility and Privacy in a Cashless World As outlined on GetMonero.org, fungibility is the property of a currency whereby two units can be substituted in place of one another. Fungibility means that two units of a currency can be mutually substituted and the substituted currency is equal to another unit of the same size. For example, two $10 bills can be exchanged and they are functionally identical to any other $10 bill in circulation (although $10 bills have unique ID numbers and are therefore not completely fungible). Gold is probably a closer example of true fungibility, where any 1 oz. of gold of the same grade is worth the same as another 1 oz. of gold. Monero is fungible due to the nature of the currency which provides no way to link transactions together nor trace the history of any particular XMR. 1 XMR is functionally identical to any other 1 XMR. Fungibility is an advantage Monero has over Bitcoin and almost every other cryptocurrency, due to the privacy inherent in the Monero blockchain and the permanently traceable nature of the Bitcoin blockchain. With Bitcoin, any BTC can be tracked by anyone back to its creation coinbase transaction. Therefore, if a coin has been used for an illegal purpose in the past, this history will be contained in the blockchain in perpetuity. A great example of Bitcoin's lack of fungibility was reposted by u/ViolentlyPeaceful:
"Imagine you sell cupcakes and receive Bitcoin as payment. It turns out that someone who owned that Bitcoin before you was involved in criminal activity. Now you are worried that you have become a suspect in a criminal case, because the movement of funds to you is a matter of public record. You are also worried that certain Bitcoins that you thought you owned will be considered ‘tainted’ and that others will refuse to accept them as payment."
This lack of fungibility means that certain businesses will be obligated to avoid accepting BTC that have been previously used for purposes which are illegal, or simply run afoul of their Terms of Service. Currently some large Bitcoin companies are blocking, suspending, or closing accounts that have received Bitcoin used in online gambling or other purposes deemed unsavory by said companies. Monero has been built specifically to address the problem of traceability and non-fungibility inherent in other cryptocurrencies. By having completely private transactions Monero is truly fungible and there can be no blacklisting of certain XMR, while at the same time providing all the benefits of a secure, decentralized, permanent blockchain. The world is moving cashless. Fact. The ramifications of this are enormous as we move into a cashless world in which transactions will be tracked and there is a potential for data to be used by third parties for adverse purposes. While most new cryptocurrency investors speculate upon vaporware ICO tokens in the hope of generating wealth, Monero provides salvation for those in which financial privacy is paramount. Too often people equate Monero's features with criminal endeavors. Privacy is not a crime, and is necessary for good money. Transparency in Monero is possible OFF-CHAIN, which offers greater transparency and flexibility. For example, a Monero user may share their Private View Key with their accountant for tax purposes. Monero aims to be adopted by more than just those with nefarious use cases. For example, if you lived in an oppressive religious regime and wanted to buy a certain item, using Monero would allow you to exchange value privately and across borders if needed. Another example is that if everybody can see how much cryptocurrency you have in your wallet, then a certain service might decide to charge you more, and bad actors could even use knowledge of your wallet balance to target you for extortion purposes. For example, a Russian cryptocurrency blogger was recently beaten and robbed of $425k. This is why FUNGIBILITY IS ESSENTIAL. To summarise this in a nutshell:
"A lack of fungibility means that when sending or receiving funds, if the other person personally knows you during a transaction, or can get any sort of information on you, or if you provide a residential address for shipping etc. – you could quite potentially have them use this against you for personal gain"
Major Investors And Crypto Figureheads Are Interested Ari Paul is the co-founder and CIO of BlockTower Capital. He was previously a portfolio manager for the University of Chicago's $8 billion endowment, and a derivatives market maker and proprietary trader for Susquehanna International Group. Paul was interviewed on CNBC on the 26th of December and when asked what was his favourite coin was, he stated "One that has real fundamental value besides from Bitcoin is Monero" and said it has "very strong engineering". In addition, when he was asked if that was the one used by criminals, he replied "Everything is used by criminals including the US dollar and the Euro". Paul later supported these claims on Twitter, recommending only Bitcoin and Monero as long-term investments. There are reports that "Roger Ver, earlier known as 'Bitcoin Jesus' for his evangelical support of the Bitcoin during its early years, said his investment in Monero is 'substantial' and his biggest in any virtual currency since Bitcoin. Charlie Lee, the creator of Litecoin, has publicly stated his appreciation of Monero. In a September 2017 tweet directed to Edward Snowden explaining why Monero is superior to Zcash, Charlie Lee tweeted:
All private transactions, More tested privacy tech, No tax on miners to pay investors, No high inflation... better investment.
John McAfee, arguably cryptocurrency's most controversial character at the moment, has publicly supported Monero numerous times over the last twelve months(before he started shilling ICOs), and has even claimed it will overtake Bitcoin. Playboy instagram celebrity Dan Bilzerian is a Monero investor, with 15% of his portfolio made up of Monero. Finally, while he may not be considered a major investor or figurehead, Erik Finman, a young early Bitcoin investor and multimillionaire, recently appeared in a CNBC Crypto video interview, explaining why he isn't entirely sold on Bitcoin anymore, and expresses his interest in Monero, stating:
"Monero is a really good one. Monero is an incredible currency, it's completely private."
There is a common belief that most of the money in cryptocurrency is still chasing the quick pump and dumps, however as the market matures, more money will flow into legitimate projects such as Monero. Monero's organic growth in price is evidence smart money is aware of Monero and gradually filtering in. The Bitcoin Flaw A relatively unknown blogger named CryptoIzzy posted three poignant pieces regarding Monero and its place in the world. The Bitcoin Flaw: Monero Rising provides an intellectual comparison of Monero to other cryptocurrencies, and Valuing Cryptocurrencies: An Approach outlines methods of valuing different coins. CryptoIzzy's most recent blog published only yesterday titled Monero Valuation - Update and Refocus is a highly recommended read. It touches on why Monero is much more than just a coin for the Darknet Markets, and provides a calculated future price of Monero. CryptoIzzy also published The Power of Money: A Case for Bitcoin, which is an exploration of our monetary system, and the impact decentralised cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Monero will have on the world. In the epilogue the author also provides a positive and detailed future valuation based on empirical evidence. CryptoIzzy predicts Monero to easily progress well into the four figure range. Monero Has a Relatively Small Marketcap Recently we have witnessed many newcomers to cryptocurrency neglecting to take into account coins' marketcap and circulating supply, blindly throwing money at coins under $5 with inflated marketcaps and large circulating supplies, and then believing it's possible for them to reach $100 because someone posted about it on Facebook or Reddit. Compared to other cryptocurrencies, Monero still has a low marketcap, which means there is great potential for the price to multiply. At the time of writing, according to CoinMarketCap, Monero's marketcap is only a little over $5 billion, with a circulating supply of 15.6 million Monero, at a price of $322 per coin. For this reason, I would argue that this is evidence Monero is grossly undervalued. Just a few billion dollars of new money invested in Monero can cause significant price increases. Monero's marketcap only needs to increase to ~$16 billion and the price will triple to over $1000. If Monero's marketcap simply reached ~$35 billion (just over half of Ripple's $55 billion marketcap), Monero's price will increase 600% to over $2000 per coin. Another way of looking at this is Monero's marketcap only requires ~$30 billion of new investor money to see the price per Monero reach $2000, while for Ethereum to reach $2000, Ethereum's marketcap requires a whopping ~$100 billion of new investor money. Technical Analysis There are numerous Monero technical analysts, however none more eerily on point than the crowd-pleasing Ero23. Ero23's charts and analysis can be found on Trading View. Ero23 gained notoriety for his long-term Bitcoin bull chart published in February, which is still in play today. Head over to his Trading View page to see his chart: Monero's dwindling supply. $10k in 2019 scenario, in which Ero23 predicts Monero to reach $10,000 in 2019. There is also this chart which appears to be freakishly accurate and is tracking along perfectly today. Coinbase Rumours Over the past 12 months there have been ongoing rumours that Monero will be one of the next cryptocurrencies to be added to Coinbase. In January 2017, Monero Core team member Riccardo 'Fluffypony' Spagni presented a talk at Coinbase HQ. In addition, in November 2017 GDAX announced the GDAX Digit Asset Framework outlining specific parameters cryptocurrencies must meet in order to be added to the exchange. There is speculation that when Monero has numerous mobile and hardware wallets available, and multisig is working, then it will be added. This would enable public accessibility to Monero to increase dramatically as Coinbase had in excess of 13 million users as of December, and is only going to grow as demand for cryptocurrencies increases. Many users argue that due to KYC/AML regulations, Coinbase will never be able to add Monero, however the Kraken exchange already operates in the US and has XMfiat pairs, so this is unlikely to be the reason Coinbase is yet to implement XMfiat trading. Monero Is Not an ICO Scam It is likely most of the ICOs which newcomers invest in, hoping to get rich quick, won't even be in the Top 100 cryptocurrencies next year. A large portion are most likely to be pumps and dumps, and we have already seen numerous instances of ICO exit scams. Once an ICO raises millions of dollars, the developers or CEO of the company have little incentive to bother rolling out their product or service when they can just cash out and leave. The majority of people who create a company to provide a service or product, do so in order to generate wealth. Unless these developers and CEOs are committed and believed in their product or service, it's likely that the funds raised during the ICO will far exceed any revenue generated from real world use cases. Monero is a Working Currency, Today Monero is a working currency, here today. The majority of so called cryptocurrencies that exist today are not true currencies, and do not aim to be. They are a token of exchange. They are like a share in a start-up company hoping to use blockchain technology to succeed in business. A crypto-assest is a more accurate name for coins such as Ethereum, Neo, Cardano, Vechain, etc. Monero isn't just a vaporware ICO token that promises to provide a blockchain service in the future. It is not a platform for apps. It is not a pump and dump coin. Monero is the only coin with all the necessary properties to be called true money. Monero is private internet money. Some even describe Monero as an online Swiss Bank Account or Bitcoin 2.0, and it is here to continue on from Bitcoin's legacy. Monero is alleviating the public from the grips of banks, and protests the monetary system forced upon us. Monero only achieved this because it is the heart and soul, and blood, sweat, and tears of the contributors to this project. Monero supporters are passionate, and Monero has gotten to where it is today thanks to its contributors and users.
///Key Issues for Monero to Overcome///
Scalability While Bulletproofs are soon to be implemented in order to improve Monero's transaction sizes and fees, scalability is an issue for Monero that is continuously being assessed by Monero's researchers and developers to find the most appropriate solution. Ricardo 'Fluffypony' Spagni recently appeared on CNBC's Crypto Trader, and when asked whether Monero is scalable as it stands today, Spagni stated that presently, Monero's on-chain scaling is horrible and transactions are larger than Bitcoin's (because of Monero's privacy features), so side-chain scaling may be more efficient. Spagni elaborated that the Monero team is, and will always be, looking for solutions to an array of different on-chain and off-chain scaling options, such as developing a Mimblewimble side-chain, exploring the possibility of Lightning Network so atomic swaps can be performed, and Tumblebit. In a post on the Monero subreddit from roughly a month ago, monero moderator u/dEBRUYNE_1 supports Spagni's statements. dEBRUYNE_1 clarifies the issue of scalability:
"In Bitcoin, the main chain is constrained and fees are ludicrous. This results in users being pushed to second layer stuff (e.g. sidechains, lightning network). Users do not have optionality in Bitcoin. In Monero, the goal is to make the main-chain accessible to everyone by keeping fees reasonable. We want users to have optionality, i.e., let them choose whether they'd like to use the main chain or second layer stuff. We don't want to take that optionality away from them."
"Monero has all the mechanisms it needs to find the balance between transaction load, and offsetting the costs of miner infrastructure/profits, while making sure the network is useful for users. But like the interviewer said, the question is directed at "right now", and Fluffys right to a certain extent, Monero's transactions are huge, and compromises in blockchain security will help facilitate less burdensome transactional activity in the future. But to compare Monero to Bitcoin's transaction sizes is somewhat silly as Bitcoin is nowhere near as useful as monero, and utility will facilitate infrastructure building that may eventually utterly dwarf Bitcoin. And to equate scaling based on a node being run on a desktop being the only option for what classifies as "scalable" is also an incredibly narrow interpretation of the network being able to scale, or not. Given the extremely narrow definition of scaling people love to (incorrectly) use, I consider that a pretty crap question to put to Fluffy in the first place, but... ¯_(ツ)_/¯"
u/xmrusher also contributed to the discussion, comparing Bitcoin to Monero using this analogous description:
"While John is much heavier than Henry, he's still able to run faster, because, unlike Henry, he didn't chop off his own legs just so the local wheelchair manufacturer can make money. While Morono has much larger transactions then Bitcoin, it still scales better, because, unlike Bitcoin, it hasn't limited itself to a cripplingly tiny blocksize just to allow Blockstream to make money."
Setting up a wallet can still be time consuming It's time consuming and can be somewhat difficult for new cryptocurrency users to set up their own wallet using the GUI wallet or the Command Line Wallet. In order to strengthen and further decentralize the Monero network, users are encouraged to run a full node for their wallet, however this can be an issue because it can take up to 24-48 hours for some users depending on their hard-drive and internet speeds. To mitigate this issue, users can run a remote node, meaning they can remotely connect their wallet to another node in order to perform transactions, and in the meantime continue to sync the daemon so in the future they can then use their own node. For users that do run into wallet setup issues, or any other problems for that matter, there is an extremely helpful troubleshooting thread on the Monero subreddit which can be found here. And not only that, unlike some other cryptocurrency subreddits, if you ask a question, there is always a friendly community member who will happily assist you. Monero.how is a fantastic resource too! Despite still being difficult to use, the user-base and price may increase dramatically once it is easier to use. In addition, others believe that when hardware wallets are available more users will shift to Monero.
I actually still feel a little shameful for promoting Monero here, but feel a sense of duty to do so. Monero is transitioning into an unstoppable altruistic beast. This year offers the implementation of many great developments, accompanied by the likelihood of a dramatic increase in price. I request you discuss this post, point out any errors I have made, or any information I may have neglected to include. Also, if you believe in the Monero project, I encourage you to join your local Facebook or Reddit cryptocurrency group and spread the word of Monero. You could even link this post there to bring awareness to new cryptocurrency users and investors. I will leave you with an old on-going joke within the Monero community - Don't buy Monero - unless you have a use case for it of course :-) Just think to yourself though - Do I have a use case for Monero in our unpredictable Huxleyan society? Hint: The answer is ? Edit: Added in the Tail Emission section, and noted Dan Bilzerian as a Monero investor. Also added information regarding the XMR.TO payment service. Added info about hardfork
[META] New to PC Building? - September 2018 Edition
You've heard from all your gaming friends/family or co-workers that custom PCs are the way to go. Or maybe you've been fed up with your HP, Dell, Acer, Gateway, Lenovo, etc. pre-builts or Macs and want some more quality and value in your next PC purchase. Or maybe you haven't built a PC in a long time and want to get back into the game. Well, here's a good place to start.
Make a budget for your PC (e.g., $800, $1000, $1250, $1500, etc.).
Decide what you will use your PC for.
For gaming, decide what games and at what resolution and FPS you want to play at.
For productivity, decide what software you'll need and find the recommended specs to use those apps.
For a bit of both, your PC build should be built on the HIGHEST specs recommended for your applications (e.g., if you only play FortNite and need CPU power for CFD simulations, use specs recommended for CFD).
Here are some rough estimates for builds with entirely NEW parts: 1080p 60FPS ultra-settings modern AAA gaming: ~$1,200 1440p 60FPS high/ultra-settings modern AAA gaming: ~$1,600 1080p 144FPS ultra-settings modern AAA gaming: $2,000 4K 50FPS medium/high-settings modern AAA gaming: > $2,400 It's noted that some compromises (e.g., lower settings and/or resolution) can be made to achieve the same or slightly lower gaming experience within ±15% of the above prices. It's also noted that you can still get higher FPS on older or used PCs by lowering settings and/or resolution AND/OR buying new/used parts to upgrade your system. Make a new topic about it if you're interested. Also note that AAA gaming is different from e-sport games like CSGO, DOTA2, FortNite, HOTS, LoL, Overwatch, R6S, etc. Those games have lower requirements and can make do with smaller budgets.
Revise your budget AND/OR resolution and FPS until both are compatible. Compare this to the recommended requirements of the most demanding game on your list. For older games, you might be able to lower your budget. For others, you might have to increase your budget. It helps to watch gaming benchmarks on Youtube. A good example of what you're looking for is something like this (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9eLxSOoSdjY). Take note of the resolution, settings, FPS, and the specs in the video title/description; ask yourself if the better gaming experience is worth increasing your budget OR if you're okay with lower settings and lowering your budget. Note that you won't be able to see FPS higher than 60FPS for Youtube videos; something like this would have to be seen in-person at a computer shop.
After procuring your parts, it's time to build. Use a good Youtube tutorial like this (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IhX0fOUYd8Q) that teach BAPC fundamentals, but always refer to your product manuals or other Youtube tutorials for part-specific instructions like CPU mounting, radiator mounting, CMOS resetting, etc. If it everything still seems overwhelming, you can always pay a computer shop or a friend/family member to build it for you. It might also be smart to look up some first-time building mistakes to avoid:
If you have any other questions, use the search bar first. If it's not there, make a topic.
BAPC News (Last Updated - 2018/09/20)
https://www.tomshardware.com/news/intel-9000-series-cpu-faq,37743.html Intel 9000 CPUs (Coffee Lake Refresh) will be coming out in Q4. With the exception of i9 (8-core, 12 threads) flagship CPUs, the i3, i5, and i7 lineups are almost identical to their Intel 8000 (Coffee Lake) series, but slightly clocked faster. If you are wondering if you should upgrade to the newer CPU on the same tier (e.g., i5-8400 to i5-9400), I don't recommend that you do as you will only see marginal performance increases.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WDrpsv0QIR0 RTX 2080 and 2080 Ti benchmarks are out; they provide ~10 and ~20 frames better than the 1080 Ti and also feature ray tracing (superior lighting and shadow effects) which is featured in only ~30 games so far (i.e., not supported a lot); effectively, they provide +25% more performance for +70% increased cost. My recommendation is NOT to buy them unless you need it for work or have lots of disposable income. GTX 1000 Pascal series are still relevant in today's gaming specs.
The calculator part. More GHz is analogous to fast fingers number crunching in the calculator. More cores is analogous to having more calculators. More threads is analogous to having more filing clerks piling more work for the calculator to do. Microarchitectures (core design) is analogous to how the internal circuit inside the calculator is designed (e.g., AMD FX series are slower than Intel equivalents even with higher OC'd GHz speeds because the core design is subpar). All three are important in determining CPU speed. In general, higher GHz is more important for gaming now whereas # cores and threads are more important for multitasking like streaming, video editing, and advanced scientific/engineering computations. Core designs from both AMD and Intel in their most recent products are very good now, but something to keep in mind.
The basic concept of overclocking (OCing) is to feed your CPU more power through voltage and hoping it does calculations faster. Whether your parts are good overclockers depends on the manufacturing process of your specific part and slight variations in materials and manufacturing process will result in different overclocking capability ("silicon lottery"). The downside to this is that you can void your warranties because doing this will produce excess heat that will decrease the lifespan of your parts AND that there is a trial-and-error process to finding OC settings that are stable. Unstable OC settings result in computer freezes or random shut-offs from excess heat. OCing will give you extra performance often for free or by investing in a CPU cooler to control your temperatures so that the excess heat will not decrease your parts' lifespans as much. If you don't know how to OC, don't do it.
Intel CPUs have higher GHz than AMD CPUs, which make them better for gaming purposes. However, AMD Ryzen CPUs have more cores and threads than their Intel equivalents. The new parts are AMD Ryzen 3, 5, or 7 2000 series or Intel i3, i5, or i7 8000 series (Coffee Lake). Everything else is outdated. If you want to overclock on an AMD system, know that you can get some moderate OC on a B350/B450 with all CPUs. X370/X470 mobos usually come with better VRMs meant for OCing 2600X, 2700, and 2700X. If you don't know how to OC, know that the -X AMD CPUs have the ability to OC themselves automatically without manually settings. For Intel systems, you cannot OC unless the CPU is an unlocked -K chip (e.g., i3-8350K, i5-8600K, i7-8700K, etc.) AND the motherboard is a Z370 mobo. In general, it is not worth getting a Z370 mobo UNLESS you are getting an i5-8600K and i7-8700K.
CPU and Mobo Compatibility
Note about Ryzen 2000 CPUs on B350 mobos: yes, you CAN pair them up since they use the same socket. You might get an error message on PCPP that says that they might not be compatible. Call the retailer and ask if the mobo you're planning on buying has a "Ryzen 2000 Series Ready" sticker on the box. This SHOULD NOT be a problem with any mobos manufactured after February 2018. Note about Intel 9000 CPUs on B360 / Z370 mobos: same as above with Ryzen 2000 CPUs on B350 or X370 boards.
CPU Cooler (Air / Liquid)
Air or liquid cooling for your CPU. This is mostly optional unless heavy OCing on AMD Ryzen CPUs and/or on Intel -K and i7-8700 CPUs. For more information about air and liquid cooling comparisons, see here:
Part that lets all the parts talk to each other. Comes in different sizes from small to big: mITX, mATX, ATX, and eATX. For most people, mATX is cost-effective and does the job perfectly. If you need more features like extra USB slots, go for an ATX. mITX is for those who want a really small form factor and are willing to pay a premium for it. eATX mobos are like ATX mobos except that they have more features and are bigger - meant for super PC enthusiasts who need the features.
AMD Ryzen CPUs: go for X470s for Ryzen 7 and B450s for everything else. B350s will also work as a sub for B450 mobos and the same can be said for X370s for X470s, but they are being phased out and may require a BIOS update to support the Ryzen 2000 CPUs if it doesn't have a "Ryzen 2000 Series Ready" sticker on the box.
Intel Coffee Lake CPUs: go for Z370s for unlocked -K CPUs and B360s for everything else.
If you are NOT OCing, pick whatever is cheap and meets your specs. I recommend ASUS or MSI because they have RMA centres in Canada in case it breaks whereas other parts are outside of Canada like in the US. If you are OCing, then you need to look at the quality of the VRMs because those will greatly influence the stability and lifespan of your parts.
Part that keeps Windows and your software active. Currently runs on the DDR4 platform for new builds. Go for dual channel whenever possible. Here's a breakdown of how much RAM you need:
2x4GB = 8GB is the minimum recommended
2x8GB = 16GB recommended for gaming
2x16GB+ for workstations
AMD Ryzen CPUs get extra FPS for faster RAM speeds (ideally 3200MHz) in gaming when paired with powerful video cards like the GTX 1070. Intel Coffee Lake CPUs use up a max of 2667MHz for B360 mobos. Higher end Z370 mobos can support 4000 - 4333MHz RAM depending on the mobo, so make sure you shop carefully! It's noted that RAM prices are highly inflated because of the smartphone industry and possibly artificial supply shortages. For more information: https://www.extremetech.com/computing/263031-ram-prices-roof-stuck-way
Part that store your files in the form of SSDs and HDDs.
Solid State Drives (SSDs)
SSDs are incredibly quick, but are expensive per TB; they are good for booting up Windows and for reducing loading times for gaming. For an old OEM pre-built, upgrading the PC with an SSD is the single greatest speed booster you can do to your system. For most people, you want to make sure the SSD you get is NOT DRAM-less as these SSDs do not last as long as their DRAM counterparts (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ybIXsrLCgdM). It is also noted that the bigger the capacity of the SSD, the faster they are. SSDs come in four forms:
2.5" SATA III
M.2 NVME PCI-e
The 2.5" SATA form is cheaper, but it is the old format with speeds up to 550MB/s. M.2 SATA SSDs have the same transfer speeds as 2.5" SATA SSDs since they use the SATA interface, but connect directly to the mobo without a cable. It's better for cable management to get an M.2 SATA SSD over a 2.5" SATA III SSD. M.2 PCI-e SSDs are the newest SSD format and transfer up to 4GB/s depending on the PCI-e lanes they use (e.g., 1x, 2x, 4x, etc.). They're great for moving large files (e.g., 4K video production). For more info about U.2 drives, see this post (https://www.reddit.com/bapccanada/comments/8jxfqs/meta_new_to_pc_building_may_2018_edition/dzqj5ks/). Currently more common for enterprise builds, but could see some usage in consumer builds.
Hard Disk Drives (HDDs)
HDDs are slow with transfer speeds of ~100MB/s, but are cheap per TB compared to SSDs. We are now at SATA III speeds, which have a max theoretical transfer rate of 600MB/s. They also come in 5400RPM and 7200RPM forms. 5400RPM uses slightly less power and are cheaper, but aren't as fast at dealing with a large number of small files as 7200RPM HDDs. When dealing with a small number of large files, they have roughly equivalent performance. It is noted that even a 10,000RPM HDD will still be slower than an average 2.5" SATA III SSD.
SSHDs are hybrids of SSDs and HDDs. Although they seem like a good combination, it's much better in all cases to get a dedicated SSD and a dedicated HDD instead. This is because the $/speed better for SSDs and the $/TB is better for HDDs. The same can be said for Intel Optane. They both have their uses, but for most users, aren't worth it.
I recommend a 2.5" or M.2 SATA ≥ 250GB DRAM SSD and a 1TB or 2TB 7200RPM HDD configuration for most users for a balance of speed and storage capacity.
Part that runs complex calculations in games and outputs to your monitor and is usually the most expensive part of the budget. The GPU you pick is dictated by the gaming resolution and FPS you want to play at. In general, all video cards of the same product name have almost the same non-OC'd performance (e.g., Asus Dual-GTX1060-06G has the same performance as the EVGA 06G-P4-6163-KR SC GAMING). The different sizes and # fans DO affect GPU OCing capability, however. The most important thing here is to get an open-air video card, NOT a blower video card (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0domMRFG1Rw). The blower card is meant for upgrading pre-builts where case airflow is limited. For cost-performance, go for the NVIDIA GTX cards because of the cryptomining industry that has inflated AMD RX cards. Bitcoin has taken a -20% hit since January's $10,000+ as of recently, but the cryptomining industry is still ongoing. Luckily, this means prices have nearly corrected itself to original MSRP in 2016. In general:
Part that houses your parts and protects them from its environment. Should often be the last part you choose because the selection is big enough to be compatible with any build you choose as long as the case is equal to or bigger than the mobo form factor. Things to consider: aesthetics, case airflow, cable management, material, cooling options (radiators or # of fan spaces), # fans included, # drive bays, toolless installation, power supply shroud, GPU clearance length, window if applicable (e.g., acrylic, tempered glass), etc. It is recommended to watch or read case reviews on Youtube to get an idea of a case's performance in your setup.
Part that runs your PC from the wall socket. Never go with an non-reputable/cheap brand out on these parts as low-quality parts could damage your other parts. Recommended branded PSUs are Corsair, EVGA, Seasonic, and Thermaltake, generally. For a tier list, see here (https://linustechtips.com/main/topic/631048-psu-tier-list-updated/).
Wattage depends on the video card chosen, if you plan to OC, and/or if you plan to upgrade to a more powerful PSU in the future. Here's a rule of thumb for non-OC wattages that meet NVIDIA's recommendations:
1050 Ti: 300W
1060 3GB/6GB: 400W
1070 / 1070 Ti: 500W
1080 Ti: 600W
There are also PSU wattage calculators that you can use to estimate your wattage. How much wattage you used is based on your PC parts, how much OCing you're doing, your peripherals (e.g., gaming mouse and keyboard), and how long you plan to leave your computer running, etc. It is noted that these calculators use conservative estimates, so use the outputted wattage as a baseline of how much you need. Here are the calculators (thanks, VitaminDeity).
Pick ONE calculator to use and use the recommended wattage, NOT recommended product, as a baseline of what wattage you need for your build. Note that Cooler Master and Seasonic use the exact calculator as Outervision. For more details about wattage, here are some reference videos:
You might also see some info about modularity (non-modular, semi-modular, or fully-modular). These describe if the cables will come connected to the PSU or can be separated of your own choosing. Non-modular PSUs have ALL of the cable connections attached to the PSU with no option to remove unneeded cables. Semi-modular PSUs have separate cables for HDDs/SSDs and PCI-e connectors, but will have CPU and mobo cables attached. Modular PSUs have all of their cables separate from each other, allowing you to fully control over cable management. It is noted that with decent cooling and airflow in your case, cable management has little effect on your temperatures (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YDCMMf-_ASE).
80+ Efficiency Ratings
As for ratings (80+, 80+ bronze, 80+ gold, 80+ platinum), these are the efficiencies of your PSU. Please see here for more information. If you look purely on electricity costs, the 80+ gold PSUs will be more expensive than 80+ bronze PSUs for the average Canadian user until a breakeven point of 6 years (assuming 8 hours/day usage), but often the better performance, longer warranty periods, durable build quality, and extra features like fanless cooling is worth the extra premium. In general, the rule of thumb is 80+ bronze for entry-level office PCs and 80+ gold for mid-tier or higher gaming/workstation builds. If the price difference between a 80+ bronze PSU and 80+ gold PSU is < 20%, get the 80+ gold PSU!
Warranties should also be looked at when shopping for PSUs. In general, longer warranties also have better PSU build quality. In general, for 80+ bronze and gold PSU units from reputable brands:
These guys are engineering experts who take apart PSUs, analyze the quality of each product, and provide an evaluation of the product. Another great website is http://www.orionpsudb.com/, which shows which PSUs are manufactured by different OEMs.
Operating System (OS)
The most common OS. You can download the ISO here (https://www.microsoft.com/en-ca/software-download/windows10). For instructions on how to install the ISO from a USB drive, see here (https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-hardware/manufacture/desktop/install-windows-from-a-usb-flash-drive) or watch a video here (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gLfnuE1unS8). For most users, go with the 64-bit version. If you purchase a Windows 10 retail key (i.e., you buy it from a retailer or from Microsoft directly), keep in mind that you are able to transfer it between builds. So if you're building another PC for the 2nd, 3rd, etc. time, you can reuse the key for those builds PROVIDED that you deactivate your key before installing it on your new PC. These keys are ~$120. However, if you have an OEM key (e.g., pre-builts), that key is tied specifically to your mobo. If you ever decide to upgrade your mobo on that pre-built PC, you might have to buy a new Windows 10 license. For more information, see this post (https://www.techadvisor.co.uk/feature/windows/windows-10-oem-or-retail-3665849/). The cheaper Windows 10 keys you can find on Kinguin are OEM keys; activating and deactivating these keys may require phoning an automated Microsoft activation line. Most of these keys are legitimate and cost ~$35, although Microsoft does not intend for home users to obtain this version of it. Buyer beware. The last type of key is a volume licensing key. They are licensed in large volumes to corporate or commercial usage. You can find lots of these keys on eBay for ~$10, but if the IT department who manages these keys audit who is using these keys or if the number of activations have exceeded the number allotted on that one key, Microsoft could block that key and invalidate your license. Buyer beware. For more information on differentiating between all three types of keys, see this page (https://www.tenforums.com/tutorials/49586-determine-if-windows-license-type-oem-retail-volume.html). If money is tight, you can get Windows 10 from Microsoft and use a trial version of it indefinitely. However, there will be a watermark in the bottom-right of your screen until you activate your Windows key.
If you're interested in using MacOS, look into Hackintosh builds. This will allow you to run MacOS to run on PC parts, saving you lots of money. These builds are pretty picky about part compatibility, so you might run into some headaches trying to go through with this. For more information, see the following links:
Please note that the cost-performance builds will change daily because PC part prices change often! Some builds will have excellent cost-performance one day and then have terrible cost-performance the next. If you want to optimize cost-performance, it is your responsibility to do this if you go down this route! Also, DO NOT PM me with PC build requests! It is in your best interests to make your own topic so you can get multiple suggestions and input from the community rather than just my own. Thanks again.
Here are some sample builds that are reliable, but may not be cost-optimized builds. These builds were created on September 9, 2018; feel free to "edit this part list" and create your own builds.
Updated sample builds to include both AMD and Intel builds
Sorry for the lack of updates. I recently got a new job where I work 12 hours/day for 7 days at a time out of the city. What little spare time I have is spent on grad school and the gym instead of gaming. So I've been pretty behind on the news and some might not be up-to-date as my standards would have been with less commitments. If I've made any mistakes, please understand it might take a while for me to correct them. Thank you!
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