TEAMTALKS #24 — SNOWBLOSSOM
TEAMTALKS PROVIDES A SOAP BOX FOR THE CRYPTO TEAMS THROUGH RAW AND UNEDITED Q&A — THIS TIME I MET WITH JOSEPH GLEASON THE FOUNDER OF SNOWBLOSSOM
Who are you?
I am Joseph Gleason (aka Fireduck).
I’ve been involved in various cryptocurrency projects since around 2011.
I have a few more notes here.
What is your role on SnowBlossom?
I designed and implemented Snowblossom. We’ve had a few other contributors and other people have certainly been idea sounding boards but most of it was me.
What are SnowBlossom’s key features?
- As a complete start from scratch project I think the code base is fairly simple and approachable
- The ASIC resistant PoW function using random IO. I hope we will be keeping mining at the hobbyist level. My goal was a modern gaming computer should be a cost effective miner. We shall see.
- Being in a position ready for quantum computers that can break the normal 256-bit EC that almost everyone is doing (https://wiki.snowblossom.org/index.php/Quantum_Tough)
- Building UTXO set merkle root into the block header. This makes it easy to have light clients that can’t be lied to about things in the UTXO set. They can even see if the server is omitting results.
Why does the world need SnowBlossom?
I’m not entirely sure it does. I made it to try some things and to avoid some of the mistakes that were made in Bitcoin. Not trying to fault Bitcoin, it is just that we have learned a lot in these past 10 years. Some key mistakes as I see it:
- Combined node and wallet — these should be separate
- Fee implicit vs explicit. In Bitcoin, the fee is anything left over after you’ve created the outputs. In Snowblossom, the fee has to be explicitly set in the transaction and inputs must equal outputs plus fee. This avoids the situation of a user accidentally sending a huge fee when they just forgot to put in a change output. This isn’t a huge problem, but to a few people, an important and costly mistake to make.
- Everything about script. I think most of a confusion and complexity of Bitcoin came from the script implementation and all the various ways an output address may be specified and the silly things people can do with scripts. But for a simple currency, you don’t need that. In snowblossom everything is a plain multisig address. (1 of 1 multisig for a single key address) There is no script language to do strange things with and no bugs related to it.
I think the world make need a simple cryptocurrency that isn’t trying to do everything. One that has the features it needs but no more.
Who are SnowBlossom’s competitors?
I don’t actually know. I know a lot about Bitcoin and Bitcoin Cash, but I have intentionally stayed out of the alt space.
Why is SnowBlossom superior/different?
Made with love? Again, I don’t know. I think we have a lot of clones of Bitcoin, of course. Sure some of them have some real merit but that code base has a lot of things going on and is pretty hard to read or understand. C++ isn’t the most accessible language these days.
Can you give a quick rundown of important tokenomics?
So no ICO, I think those are bullshit. No premine, also bullshit. I have no idea who the top people on the Snowblossom richlist are but they are certainly not me.
Emission schedule is just like bitcoin, 50 per block, halving every 4 years to give a 21 million total supply. Currently 2.3 million out there.
Can you give a quick rundown of the SnowBlossom motor?
Consensus is PoW mining based on a random reads into a large snow field. This makes the mining more IO bandwidth intensive than CPU/GPU/ASIC. Sure, someone could build something that does more raw IOPS than a regularly available NVME drive or DDR4 stick, but it probably won’t be much more price effective. This means mining will be in the hands of a large number of people. Hopefully.
In more detail, the hashing algorithm is based on doing reads into the large snow field files. They started at 1gb, but are up to 256gb right now. Each hash operation requires 6 lookups into that field. The field is generated using a nightmarish algorithm that ensures that you can’t just quickly make a few chunks of the file in memory as you need them. People can generate the file, the algorithm is checked in, but it writes sectors over and over as it progresses through its rounds so it takes some time. Most people download the torrents. But the merkle roots of these files are checked in as well, so nodes and clients don’t need these huge files to validate blocks. The block headers include a merkle proof for each of those reads to prove the data was there as included in the headers. It makes the headers a few kb larger than other coins but I think it is a reasonable trade-off.
As far as governance, we have a system built into mining to allow pools to vote on issues. It isn’t enforced by the protocol. I could check in whatever I wanted and people could decide to run it or not but I see no reason to not respect the votes.
How does the SnowBlossom core team look right now?
Mostly it is me on the coding and some folks helping out with tooling and an occasional pull request. We also have a guy who made the Android wallet.
Are there plans of team expansion & in which part(s) of the team?
Not specifically. With no premine it isn’t like we have a bit warchest to pay anyone from. I do have some tips sent to me via mining pools optional configuration but I am keeping that separate and will probably use it to help pay people to do things.
Where is SnowBlossom based?
There is no legal entity for Snowblossom. I am in Seattle, WA, US.
How does SnowBlossom relate to local legislation?
Same as any other non-ICO cryptocurrency, I imagine.
How does SnowBlossom relate to worldwide regulation?
Same as above.
How does SnowBlossom get income from the project?
It doesn’t. I am already pretty well off from previous adventures and am doing this as a hobby/passion project. I do get some tips from people’s mining pools, but it isn’t much.
What are the future plans for income for the project?
Well, obviously lambo moon. I have future plans for the project which might end up increasing the value of Snowblossom, but mostly I am doing them because I think they are good ideas that should be done.
How will the man on the street experience/use SnowBlossom?
Honestly, right now, he won’t. We have an android app, but that doesn’t mean there is adoption.
How will ordinary shop owners & small businesses?
We have some plans for web property owners. We have a payments and auth system on the design board that will help with micro transactions for ad free or premium content.
How will government bodies and large corporations?
I don’t see that happening any time soon. Those groups are generally conservative. They will come to new things, but only after they are out and established a long time and seem safe.
How will the crypto investor?
At this point, Snowblossom, like many other cryptocurrencies is a high risk, highly speculative investment. I would suggest to anyone thinking about it, think in the long term and be ready to weather the risk.
$SNOW is traded on qTrade.io.
What is the next big thing for SnowBlossom?
We have two pretty exciting things in the works.
One is a peer to peer content distribution system called Snow Channels.
That is important work that someone needs to do right. We have some code in place, currently the only thing that works is a really killer global scale distributed hash table. That is an important part, but just a part of the larger project.
Check the github on Snow Channels here.
The other is the payment and auth setup I mentioned earlier.
Where do you see SnowBlossom in 5 years?
95% chance a minor footnote in the storm of crypto-alts
5% chance world domination
THANKS TO SNOWBLOSSOM FOR TAKING THE TIME TO PARTICIPATE! I, FOR ONE, WILL BE FOLLOWING THIS PROJECT CLOSELY!
NOW; IF U ENJOYED THIS ARTICLE, PLEASE TAKE THE TIME TO PRESS THE CLAP BUTTON AS MANY TIMES AS YOU SEE FIT!
MUCH OBLIGED, FLASHY GORDY