Not So Secret Handshake, Demystifying the HNS Ecosystem
Part 2: 6Block Pool
In this series I’ll be covering all the projects building on Handshake. After writing a short article with a high level take on the project I decided to take a deeper dive. If there is a project or person you’d like me to cover, reach out to me on Twitter.
Project Feature: 6block
This is going to be a very short article. The 6block team are a secretive bunch. They are the creators of one of the mining pools on Handshake. Currently their pools accounts for roughly 3.9% of the hashrate, but that may change in the coming weeks (they are preparing the launch of an ASIC, one of the first for Handshake).
Before we jump into their background, lets meet the team…
That’s right! The 6block team is anonymous, and they prefer to keep it that way. I was however able to connect with them via Telegram and get some details about the them. During the quarantine I’ve become an investigative journalist, what else is there to do?
Who Are These Mystery Folk?
The 6block team are no spring chickens (for the younger folks, that means “newbs” in old folk talk). Most of the team has been mining cryptocurrency since 2013/14. Since that time they have built a strong track record of running mining pools and farms. Before writing this series I used the 6block pool to mine HNS with a friend of mine and we found the experience to be streamlined and their support to be fast. It’s clear they know what they’re doing — they did choose to mine HNS early, so they’ve got good taste.
During our chat they wanted to get across to people that they are dedicated to Handshake and mining pools at large for the long haul. I asked point blank if they are in this for the money, or if they really believe in the tech, what followed was a wall of text…
The 6block team said they are driven by a desire to see Handshake succeed. One can infer that if they have been mining at scale since 2013, they perhaps don’t need the money. It shouldn’t be surprising that a team who wants to remain anonymous is also passionate about decentralizing domains. Like many of us they were impressed by the success thus far of the HNS launch and the fact that it’s working as intended.
ASICs in Development for HNS Mining
6block recently announced the very first ASIC miner for Handshake, which is expected to ship sometime in May. I’m not sure about the history of ASIC’s and new proof of work chains, but this seems like an insanely fast launch (albeit HNS’s PoW was purpose-built to not be ASIC resistant, this is still impressive). At the current price of 0.2720 BTC (about $1950 USD), you too can be the proud owner of a Handshake ASIC called the “Mars H1”.
With 80GHs of hashing power, this rig puts my two Nvidia 2080TI’s to shame. In fact it’s equivalent to having 150 of my puny cards. Taking into account that I paid $800 for my two cards, this is a steal. The current hashrate on Handshake is 49/THs, so it will be interesting to see what happens when the Mars H1 comes online.
As a root anchor for the decentralized web, HNS needs as much PoW security as it can get. With so many mining HNS this early, we can likely expect others with similar announcements in the future regarding their own custom built ASICs, so they can remain competitive as the difficulty rises from 6Block introducing their new hardware on the network.
How can I connect with these mysterious makers of dollarydoos?
*The dollarydoo for Handshake is the equivalent of a Satoshi (or “sats”) on the Bitcoin blockchain.
Join me a Remote Crypto Con
If you’re enjoying these posts and want me to keep them coming you can tip me some $HNS: hs1qpqtj33nrzmt9lyulah6p2s73zjg5zshkq7r2sq
Or you can buy some Handshake Merch
Edited By: Steven McKie