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However, just how can you create a system that has a decentralized ledger How do you give someone the ability to upgrade the ledger without giving them a lot of powerin case they become corrupt or negligent in their work
Well, Bitcoins rulesalso known as the Bitcoin protocolsolves this in a very creative way I like to call Who Wants to Be a Banker
In a nutshell, anyone who wants to take part in updating the ledger of all Bitcoin transactions, known as the blockchain, can do this. All you need is to suppose a random number that solves an equation generated by the system. Sounds simple, right
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Of course, this guessing is all done by your computer. The stronger your computer is, the further guesses you can create in one second, increasing your chances of winning this match. If you manage to figure correctly, you earn bitcoins and have to write the next page of Bitcoin transactions on the blockchain. .
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1. Once your mining pc comes up with the right guess, your mining program determines which of the current pending transactions will be grouped together into the next block of transactions. Compiling this cube represents your moment of glory, as youve now become a temporary banker of Bitcoin who gets to update the Bitcoin transaction ledger known as the blockchain. .
2. The block youve created, along with your solution, is sent to the entire network so other computers can affirm it. Its a bit similar to some Rubiks cube: The solution is very hard to achieve but quite easy to validate.
3. Every computer that validates your solution upgrades its copy of the Bitcoin transaction ledger with the transactions you chose to include in the cube.
4. The system generates a fixed amount of bitcoins (currently 12.5) and rewards them to you as compensation for time and energy you spent solving the math issue.
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5. Additionally, you get paid any transaction fees that were attached to the transactions you inserted into the next block.
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6. All the transactions in the cube youve only entered are now confirmed from the Bitcoin network and therefore are virtually irreversible.
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So thats Bitcoin mining in a nutshell. Its called mining because of the fact that this process helps mine new Bitcoins from the system. But if you think about it, the mining component is merely a by-product of the transaction confirmation procedure. Therefore that the name is somewhat misleading, since the main goal of mining is to maintain the ledger in a decentralized manner. .
As you can imagine, since mining is based on a type of guessing, for each block, a different miner will guess the number and be granted the right to update the blockchain. Obviously, the miners with computing power will succeed more often, but on account of the law of statistical probability, its highly unlikely that the same miner will succeed each time. .
Now you know what Bitcoin mining is, you may be thinking, Cool! Free money! Where do I sign up Well, not so fast
Satoshi Nakamoto, who invented Bitcoin, crafted the principles for mining in a way that the more mining energy the network gets, the harder it is to imagine the answer to the mining mathematics problem. So that the difficulty of this mining process is actually self-adjusting to the gathered mining power the network possesses. .
If more miners join, it is going to get more difficult to address the issue; when many of them fall off, it will get easier. This can be known as mining issue.
Now, remember, this is on average. We can have two cubes being added minute after minute and then wait an hour to the next block. In the long run, this will even out to ten minutes on average.
As you can imagine, this type of self-adjusting mechanism has made a sort of arms race to acquire the most efficient and powerful miners as soon as possible.
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When Bitcoin first started out, there werent a lot of miners out there. In fact, Satoshi, the inventor of Bitcoin, and his friend Hal Finney were a few the only people mining Bitcoin back at the time with their own personal computers.
Using your CPU (central processing unityour computers brain and an integrated right here component in any computer) was enough for mining Bitcoin back in 2009, since mining issue was low. Since Bitcoin began to catch on, people looked for more powerful mining solutions.