- What is Bitcoin?
- The Bitcoin Blockchain
- Bitcoin Mining
- Bitcoin Cash
- The Lightning Network
- The “Golden” Hard Fork
- BTG RoadMap
What is Bitcoin?
Bitcoin is a peer-to-peer digital currency known as a crypto-currency. So, you can use bitcoins to buy or sell goods and services anywhere in the world. Most importantly, you can send or receive bitcoin from one person to another without the need for a bank or payment service.
The Bitcoin Blockchain
Instead, Bitcoin uses the Blockchain as a public ledger. For reference, every bitcoin transaction is time-stamped and recorded to the Blockchain. It’s a distributed ledger. Meaning, Millions of computers from around the world work together to maintain it’s accuracy.
“Mining” is the process of securing and recording transactions to the Blockchain. Anyone can use their home computer to “mine” for Bitcoin. Miners are what makes bitcoin “decentralized” (without having one central area of command). To understand the fine details of mining read Bitcoin Mining Explained Like You’re Five.
All Crypto-currencies have their own set of rules and protocols. These rules ensure the security and consistency of the network. They are usually described in detail and published as a “White Paper.”
Satoshis “Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System” defined the original rules for Bitcoin. For example:
- Blockchain Structure
- Block size
- Mining difficulty
- Transaction fees
- Cryptographic Hash Algorithm
You can find a great reference to the Bitcoin Protocol on this wiki page.
The rule of consensus is this, miners understand the rules and need to agree that each block meets the requirements for it to be valid. Therefore, bitcoin rules are set by a democratic “public agreement.” For a rule to change, at least 51% of miners must agree to the change. Otherwise, a “Hard Fork” is necessary.
Usually, Each fork starts with a debate of how to solve a problem. Recently, there were two major debates within the bitcoin community. Both debates have resulted in hard forks, the creation of Bitcoin Cash and Bitcoin Gold.
Bitcoin Cash wanted to make the network more scalable. Their solution was to increase the blocksize limit and remove SegWit from the code. The decision was final on August 1, 2017, when Bitcoin Cash hard-forked the blockchain.
At first, mining Bitcoin Cash appeared to be profitable. Over time Bitcoin Cash has shown sporadic block generation. As a result, mining has become less profitable and unpredictable.
Since its beginning Bitcoin Cash has attracted heavy criticism. Nick Szabo called the network “centralized sock puppetry” last year. Microsoft described solutions offering bigger block sizes like Bitcoin Cash as “degrading decentralization.” On February 13, 2018, Altcoin News CryptoPay deemed it “unsafe to Enable Bitcoin Cash.”
Unfortunately, The solution itself seems to have been a bust. A recent analysis shows that Bitcoin still handles more transactions in the same period as Bitcoin Cash. Thankfully, Bitcoin had already planned scalability solutions, the SegWit and Lighting Network upgrades.
The Lightning Network
The lightning network is a trust-less payment technology used by Bitcoin. It’s capable of committing thousands of transactions per second. For Bitcoin, it is the second-layer(sidechain) solution to its Scalability problem.
Microsoft will use the Lightning Network
Microsoft has announced developments using Blockchain Technology with Second-layer Solutions. Claiming that the Lightning Network is necessary for Bitcoin to reach a global scale.
Bitcoin Gold will also use the Lightning Network
The “Golden” Hard Fork
Bitcoin Gold hard forked on Nov. 12, 2017. It started as a small group in the bitcoin community. First of all, their mission is to preserve the democracy of bitcoin mining. Another goal is to make mining decentralized again like it was in the early days of Bitcoin.
The hard fork created a new version of bitcoin while still maintaining its history. If you owned bitcoins before the fork, you now own an equal amount of “gold” bitcoins.
What makes Bitcoin Gold special?
It comes as no surprise that many people ask “What makes Bitcoin Gold any different than every other hard forks like Bitcoin Cash?” My answer to them is that the BTGold empowers new people from around the world to get involved in the mining process. Coupled with the fact that BTG is a non-profit group, who are dedicated to serving the community. On top of that, they are helping the next generation of young entrepreneurs prepare to change the world. The MIT business competition gathers the top business students from around the world, to meet with some of the most successful business experts . conventional business thinking.
The BTG team are official sponsors of CaseIT. CaseIT is an international Business case competition. Top students from around the world meet with industry experts to challenge conventional thinking. The competition encourages students to redefine business and technology. It also helps build global connections. Although in most ways Bitcoin Gold works the same as Bitcoin always has, there are a couple of differences:
- Bitcoin Core and Bitcoin Cash allow unfair ASIC mining devices. Their block difficulty adjusts every two weeks.
- Bitcoin Gold changed from SHA256 to Equihash. Its block difficulty adjusts every block.
Equihash vs. ASIC mining
The idea behind Equihash is that the algorithm relies more on memory, rather than exhausting computing power. It is designed to block the use of ASIC devices. Finally, It’s profitable to mine bitcoin again, and with only standard computer hardware.
Bitcoin Gold Ecosystem
Below is a copy of the 2018 RoadMap update for details and more information click here