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But just how do you create a system that has a decentralized ledger How can you give someone the ability to update the ledger without giving them too much powerin case they become corrupt or negligent in their job
Well, Bitcoins rulesalso known as the Bitcoin protocolsolves that in a very creative manner I like to call Who Wants to Be a Banker
In a nutshell, anyone who wants to participate in updating the ledger of all Bitcoin transactions, known as the blockchain, can do so. Whatever you need is to suppose a random number that solves an equation generated by the system. Sounds easy, right
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Obviously, this guessing is all done by your PC. The stronger your computer is, the further guesses you can create in a second, increasing your chances of winning this match. If you manage to guess correctly, you earn bitcoins and get to write the next page of Bitcoin transactions on the blockchain. .
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1. Once your mining pc comes up with the right suspect, your mining program determines which of these current pending transactions will be grouped together into the next block of transactions. Compiling this block represents the moment of glory, as youve now develop into a temporary banker of Bitcoin who gets to upgrade the Bitcoin transaction ledger known as the blockchain. .
2. The block youve created, along with your solution, is sent to the entire network so other computers can validate it. Its a bit much like a Rubiks cube: The solution is very tough to attain but very easy to validate.
3. Every computer which validates your solution updates its copy of the Bitcoin transaction ledger together with the transactions you chose to include in the block.
4. The machine generates a predetermined amount of bitcoins (currently 12.5) and benefits them as compensation for time and energy you spent solving the math problem.
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5. Additionally, you get paid any transaction fees which were attached to the transactions you inserted into the next block.
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6. All the transactions in the block youve only entered are now confirmed by the Bitcoin network and therefore are virtually irreversible.
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So thats Bitcoin mining in a nutshell. Its called mining because of the simple fact that this procedure helps mine new Bitcoins from the computer system. But if you think about it, the mining component is just a by-product of this transaction confirmation process. Therefore that the name is a bit misleading, since the main goal of mining is to maintain the ledger in a decentralized manner. .
As you can imagine, since mining is based on a form of guessing, for each block, a different miner will guess the number and also be granted the right to upgrade the blockchain. Of course, that the miners with computing power will succeed more often, but due to the regulation of statistical probability, its highly unlikely that the exact same miner will succeed every time. .
Now you know what Bitcoin mining is, you may be thinking, Cool! Free money! Where do I sign up Well, not so fast
Satoshi Nakamoto, who invented Bitcoin, crafted the principles for mining in a way that the more mining power the network has, the harder it is to guess the answer to the mining math issue. Therefore that the difficulty of the mining process is really self-adjusting into the accumulated mining power the network possesses. .
If more miners join, it is going to get harder to solve the issue; if many of them drop off, it will get easier. This is known as mining difficulty.
Now, remember, this is on average. We can have two cubes being added best site minute after minute and then wait an hour to the next block. In the long run, this may even out to ten minutes on average.
As you can imagine, this kind of self-adjusting mechanism has created a sort of arms race to get the most efficient and strong miners as soon as possible.
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When Bitcoin first started out, there werent a lot of miners on the market. In fact, Satoshi, the inventor of Bitcoin, and also his friend Hal Finney were a couple of the only people mining Bitcoin back in the time with their own personal computers.
Using your CPU (central processing unityour computers brain and an integrated component in any computer) was enough for mining Bitcoin back in 2009, since mining difficulty was reduced. As Bitcoin started to catch on, folks looked for more powerful mining solutions.