Why can't they use super computers to mine all the bitcoins?

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You can bet that some supercomputers are spending time on Bitcoin mining. Since the overall rate of payout is formulated on a calendar-schedule, the payoff per kilowatt hour consumed is low.

A 2014 article by Business Insider claims that supercomputers no longer come close to the power of dedicated ASICS designed for bitcoin mining. I have recently consulted to the lab that operates the largest supercomputer in Asia (and current world record holder) to help them determine if it makes sense to mine in their spare time. Conclusion: Yes, but not by a wide margin. Additionally, they have a special edge.†

But this doesn't stop people from trying…

One year ago (in November 2014), an ex-German military cryptographer Mark Welle and his brother Maik began offering a mining service based on their “Two Brothers” supercomputer. Incidentally, they operated for two years in stealth mode. Their decision to work for others is most likely related to the lower payouts available as we head...
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Dear Lifehacker,
Everywhere I go, I see Bitcoin popping up more and more. Many web services accept payments in the form of Bitcoin, and some even sell their homes for the stuff. I know it's a digital currency, but where does it come from and how is its value determined? More importantly, should I bother earning it and using it for any reason?

Sincerely,
Bitconfused

Dear Bitconfused,
As you've noted, Bitcoin is a digital currency used to pay for a variety of goods and services. In many ways, it works the same as paper money with some key differences. Although physical forms of Bitcoin exist, the currency's primary form is data so you trade it online, peer to peer, using wallet software or an online service. You can obtain Bitcoin's either by trading other money, goods, or services with people who have them or through mining. The mining process involves running software that performs complex mathematical equations for which you're rewarded a very small...

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Once upon a time, money - in the form of precious metals - used to be literally dug out of the earth. Limitations on the amount that could be mined, and on how much growth could be borrowed from the future (all debt is, is future consumption denied), is why eventually the world's central bankers moved from money backed by precious metals, to "money" backed by "faith and credit", in the process diluting both. It was the unprecedented explosion in credit money creation that resulted once money could be "printed" out of thin air that nearly destroyed the western financial system. Which brings us to Bitcoin, where currency "mining" takes place not in the earth's crust, or in the basement of the Federal Reserve, but inside supercomputers.

It is these supercomputers, that are the laborers of the virtual mines where Bitcoins are unearthed, that the NYT focuses on in a recent expose:

Bitcoins are invisible money, backed by no government, useful only as a speculative...

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Want to learn how to mine bitcoins? First, mining bitcoins is done via SHA256.

To get started mining bitcoins you could get a Antminer S9 for about $500 or a Spondoolies Tech SP20 for about $500.

Learn about how to use the best Bitcoin mining pools.

Learn how to buy bitcoins and trade it

Learn about Bitcoin cloud mining.

Learn about how to use gift card websites using Bitcoin

Transcript - Bitcoin For Beginners - Learn How To Mine Bitcoin ! - Part 1

Hello and welcome to my Bitcoin for Beginners Tutorial. Now in this video tutorial I’m going to cover what Bitcoin is? How to mine it and some tips and tricks that you can use to make more money mining Bitcoin. I just want to start off by saying if you want to skip the tutorial everything that I’m going to talk about is in the video description and is labeled accordingly. So, you can just click on the video description, download the mining software, click on the link to view a calculator...

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For some, Bitcoin conjures ideas of a utopian decentralized currency, but many others these days think of it as a quick way to make a buck. Countless hordes of Bitcoin prospectors are now using their computers to “mine” for Bitcoins by solving for specific hashed values. Now, the processing power of these miners is being estimated to be six to eight times greater than the top 500 supercomputers combined.

A Bitcoin-centric site called The Genesis Block recently broke down the data that shows just how powerful the Bitcoin mining network actually is. The processing power estimates passed one exaflops (1018 floating-point operations per second) recently, and that is no small feat. Sequoia, one of the world’s fastest supercomputers, is capable of 16.32 petaflops, but that’s only 1.6% of the estimated power of the Bitcoin mining network. As it turns out, the processing power of these computers dedicated to mining for Bitcoins is somewhere between six and eight times greater than...

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Whereas most faucets only allow you to claim once per hour or once per...

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Find answers to recurring questions and myths about Bitcoin.

Table of contents

General

What is Bitcoin?

Bitcoin is a consensus network that enables a new payment system and a completely digital money. It is the first decentralized peer-to-peer payment network that is powered by its users with no central authority or middlemen. From a user perspective, Bitcoin is pretty much like cash for the Internet. Bitcoin can also be seen as the most prominent triple entry bookkeeping system in existence.

Bitcoin is the first implementation of a concept called "cryptocurrency", which was first described in 1998 by Wei Dai on the cypherpunks mailing list, suggesting the idea of a new form of money that uses cryptography to control its creation and transactions, rather than a central authority. The first Bitcoin specification and proof of concept was published in 2009 in a cryptography mailing list by Satoshi Nakamoto. Satoshi left the project in late 2010...

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Bitcoin value is up over 200% from this time last year. How’s the dollar doing?

Today I will extend to you three key reasons why the Bitcoin value versus the “Almighty Dollar” is of little significance, and may be totally irrelevant both now, and in the future.

One reason can be from distilled from lessons learned in our history of decentralized networks versus other centralized networks. One can be realized through the present day landscape, and one looks into the future of money as we know it. So let’s begin with our ability to learn from history.

Twenty years ago, when the Internet was just starting to gain momentum, it was in a similar state of development as Bitcoin is in today. “The Web” was replacing ancient communication methods like typewriters and snail mail at a slow, but steadily increasing rate. These wouldn’t be instantly replaced,...

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Bitcoin, Dogecoins, and other cryptocurrencies have grabbed a lot of headlines for their explosive growth (and bust, and growth, and, well…). The trick is that generating this currency—"mining" it—requires an awful lot of computing power. But wait! Instead of computers, let's use lots of smartphones!

Unfortunately, security company Lookout says that the math on mobile mining just doesn't add up.

Mobile Mining Number Crunch
The numbers say it all. Lookout's researchers calculated that if you're mining for 24 solid hours on a Samsung Galaxy SIII, you'd only earn .00000007 Bitcoin or $0.00004473. In order to make just one Bitcoin in a day, Lookout says you'd need 14,285,714 phones working full-tilt simultaneously.

Bitcoins are hugely valuable (over $600USD per Bitcoin), and therefore require huge resources to mine. But even less valuable cryptocurrency, like Litecoin, are beyond the reach of mobile miners. If you took 3,752 SIII phones and let them work for...

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There's an entire industry of Bitcoin miners out there, people that set up specialized computer rigs to run 24 hours a day to mine the digital currency. Thanks to a 23-year-old kid from Brooklyn, this cottage industry is about to change. Yifu Guo, a digital media student on hiatus from NYU-Poly, has released the first batch of ASICs, which are chips custom-built to do one thing: mine Bitcoins.

These ASICs are capable of mining Bitcoins at a far higher rate than is possible with common computer equipment — Guo's design, called the Avalon V1, can mine Bitcoins about 50 times faster than a high-end rig, and offers a much more attractive price-to-performance ratio. ASICs also consume much less power than GPU-based machines, but they don't give miners the option to play the most demanding PC games.


Being the first company to get this new technology into customers' hands is big news in the Bitcoin community, where early adopters consistently reap a lion's...

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Have you been wondering, How to Start Mining Quarkcoins?

Direct Youtube link

New Release – Version 2.0 – CPU Mining Software

Lately, I’ve been trying to earn some money by mining the Bitcoin alternatives, Quarkcoin. After spending the entirety of last week attempting to get free money, I may have succeeded, to an extent. This introductory article covers how I got started mining cryptocoins and which coin provides the best returns on investment, for beginners. It’s shockingly easy.

If you know nothing about Bitcoins and virtual currencies then here’s a short primer: Bitcoin is an uncollateralized digital cryptocurrency subject

entirely to the market forces of supply and demand. As long as individuals demand it, it will possess value, although that value will fluctuate wildly. It establishes ownership through a peer-to-peer network, which keeps track of who owns what, known as a “Blockchain”.

For those of you not familiar with the...

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New chips from Butterfly Labs, a leading Bitcoin equipment manufacturer, promise speeds of 4.5 gigahashes per second to 1,500 gigahashes per second.

Jim O’Shea, a web programmer, gadget lover, and family man living in Pennsylvania, became a digital gold miner in June of 2011.

The resource he mines is not World of Warcraft currency, personal data, or fancy new domain names. It’s Bitcoin, the internet-native currency that many believe has the potential to become a revolutionary new universal currency independent of governments, banks, and PayPal.

O’Shea has 24 computers running constantly in a shed behind his house, making Bitcoins. "My setup is kind of... ghetto. I have bugs crawling around on my rigs and there’s dust and pollen and cigar smoke," he told The Verge recently by phone. "I'm out here now, I don’t know if you can hear them in the background. Can you hear the hum?"

The race to mine Bitcoins has drawn a rush of digital '49ers

Bitcoin has...

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Police departments in midcoast and northern Maine said they have paid ransom to hackers to keep their computer files from being destroyed, WCSH-TV reported Friday night.

The Portland station said the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office and four towns paid $300 to the hackers after a virus, called a “megacode,” was downloaded on a computer system they share. Lincoln County Sheriff Todd Bracket said that the computer system was unusable until the fee was paid, and that the hackers claimed the program, called “ransomware,” would wipe the entire computer system clean if the fee wasn’t paid.

The creator of the virus gave the sheriff’s office a code to unlock the computer system after the money was received. The county paid in bitcoins, an online currency.

“We needed our programs to get back online,” said Damariscotta Police Chief Ron Young. “That was a choice we all discussed and took to get back online to get our information.”

Brackett told WCSH that the FBI...

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