This is an adaptation of a report originally written for clients of Signum Global Advisors alongside Angela Dalton, Managing Partner for Technology.

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The launch of Application-Specific Integrated Circuits (ASICs) for Bitcoin mining 2013 set off a modern day gold rush. In the six years since, miners have scoured the globe in search of cheap electricity to power the commercial-scale operations made possible by such special purpose hardware. Their scramble has raised eyebrows along the way, with headlines decrying Proof-of-Work as some deal with the devil in the age of climate consciousness. This past year, however, miners found their work vindicated…

A Rebuttal to CoinShares’s November 2018 Mining Report

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The cryptocurrency community loves a good narrative: “Fat Protocols Thesis;” “Bitcoin as a Store of Value;” “Miner Death-Spiral” — the list goes on. Spurred on by a recent CoinShares report on mining trends, Bitcoiners have taken to arguing that the network’s energy demand has a net-positive environmental impact. Their reasoning is that, as energy buyers of last resort, miners have been drawn to cheap renewables in otherwise hopelessly remote locations: “stranded assets.”

… further studies may yet prove that, at least in terms of the environment, not only does cryptocurrency do no harm, it could actually be doing good… Bitcoin…

15 Projects, 1 Goal — create a more open financial system

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Last Thursday, #DeFi organized our first summit, a one-day community event comprised of collaborative strategic discussions on how to best build the open financial system. We hosted the event on the eve of ETHSanFrancisco, bringing together the enthusiasts, builders, and subject matter experts necessary for creating the open financial system we all strive toward. The end result was nothing short of spectacular: with topics ranging from wallet UX design to on-chain financial instruments, the caliber of the conversations blew us away. …

Tl;dr Bitcoin maximalists argue that the energy consumption of Proof-of-Work provides the network with a security moat. In reality, it introduces political risk because of the highly centralized nature of energy infrastructure and markets. Evidence points to Bitcoin being susceptible to sovereign censorship in the future as its network growth continues along existing geopolitical fault lines. Alternatives to completely miner-driven blockchains, like Lightning Network or Proof-of-Stake, reduce or avoid this issue by relying on endogenous factors (i.e. the native currency) for transaction validation.

Bitcoin has redefined what money means in the digital age. But as the “censorship-resistant” cryptocurrency enters its…

Maximilian Fiege

Committed to a Decentralized Future

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