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Author Topic: Will fund ASIC board for mining community. Need Hardware devs.  (Read 40216 times)
speeder
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June 13, 2011, 12:25:50 AM
 #61

Throw that on GLBSE!!!! PLEASE!

I would gadly invest on that, even if the return is 0 Cheesy

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June 13, 2011, 10:38:00 PM
 #62

My issue with all of this is, that the hadware spec won't be Open Source, only the finished ("compiled") chips should be sold.

Sorry, but this approach creates a centralized entity again. If it's really so hard and expensive anyways to produce ASICs, you could open source the hardware plan anyways, as there won't be someone else to copy it who has not a few million bucks to play with.

I won't develop (or help developing) anything that in the end will only output a centralized miner chip that noone can audit (who says this design I implement doesn't use 10% of it's power to submit my private shares?) or improve. It is my believe that as much about Bitcoin as possible should be open source - this includes miners in software AND hardware!

The hardware effort is already in the open source realm: http://forum.bitcoin.org/index.php?topic=9047.0;all
Maybe it will be required to make extra hardware mechanism to ensure integrity of the deployed computational power.

Once the chip exists, it only a matter to make it available to hardware developers (e.g.: make it buyable from digikey.com) that will be able to cook up hardware around the chip. Right now all the money is going to AMD...I think it would be more decentralized if we could all build our own hardware.

I say let's make a project on www.kickstarter.com (in the technology/open hardware section) to get as much cash as possible and let's build the damn thing. Projects on kickstarter have gathered as much as 300-400k$ in the past...so it's possible to put some real money togther. People could fund the project by pre-ordering their board. Funds should go to and be managed by bitcoin founders/bitcoin.org...the chip's IP too.
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June 14, 2011, 12:42:54 AM
 #63

We better get our skates on as a community before someone else does it.  Somebody somewhere will be working on a GPU killer, and keeping it for themselves.
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June 14, 2011, 12:52:12 AM
 #64

We better get our skates on as a community before someone else does it.  Somebody somewhere will be working on a GPU killer, and keeping it for themselves.

This, times 10.

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ttul
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June 14, 2011, 08:11:56 PM
 #65

We better get our skates on as a community before someone else does it.  Somebody somewhere will be working on a GPU killer, and keeping it for themselves.

This, times 10.

I have posted this elsewhere in the forum, but perhaps because I'm a new user, people haven't noticed. I'm actively working with a group of experienced product managers and ASIC engineers to build a Bitcoin ASIC, and expect first units to arrive in September or October. This is a well financed project, and we will likely eclipse what the community can do through Kick Starter. This is not to say that the community should not build its own ASIC - I just don't want people to be pouring their life savings into Kick Starter only to be surprised that some startup has surpassed them.

We know that our product will be valueless unless we support the Bitcoin community and encourage the kind of grass roots engineering that has taken the system so far in such a short time. To this end, we are planning to make as much of the design open as we possibly can; for example, the device drivers will be completely open source to encourage innovation. For obvious competitive reasons, the digital design will remain proprietary.

I don't want to say more about the product at this time; however, if you are interested in getting on our announcement list or if you have suggestions for us, please visit the form at the following address:

http://www.largecoin.com

Thanks,
The LargeCoin Team
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June 14, 2011, 09:02:27 PM
 #66

i'm skipping the gpu fad. never bought a computer that came with a video card. dont mind buying a custom fgpa or asic.
anyone not accounting for moores law is retarded.
also, THANK YOU Mr. Tremblay, this community needs to work like a well oiled machine if bitcoin is to succeed.
also, WHEN CAN MY 3D PRINTER CREATE ASIC FISHES N CHIPS?

like my politics? thanks! help me buy sum Silky Asic Fpga
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TheSeven
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June 14, 2011, 09:55:38 PM
 #67

I have posted this elsewhere in the forum, but perhaps because I'm a new user, people haven't noticed. I'm actively working with a group of experienced product managers and ASIC engineers to build a Bitcoin ASIC, and expect first units to arrive in September or October. This is a well financed project, and we will likely eclipse what the community can do through Kick Starter. This is not to say that the community should not build its own ASIC - I just don't want people to be pouring their life savings into Kick Starter only to be surprised that some startup has surpassed them.

We know that our product will be valueless unless we support the Bitcoin community and encourage the kind of grass roots engineering that has taken the system so far in such a short time. To this end, we are planning to make as much of the design open as we possibly can; for example, the device drivers will be completely open source to encourage innovation. For obvious competitive reasons, the digital design will remain proprietary.

Could you elaborate on some questions, which I believe are not interfering with your competetive reasons, but might be helpful for the community to prepare?
- Will the ASIC itself be sold by your company (or e.g. through digikey)?
- Will ready-to-use boards containing your ASIC be sold by as well, or should the community handle that?
- Have you already decided on the ASICs external interface?
- Are you planning to sell PCIe mining boards based on your ASIC?
- If yes, will the ASIC itself have a PCIe interface, or will the ASICs have a more simple interface, with multiple ASICs connecting to some controller that handles the PCIe interface? (I would strongly encourage the latter)
- Are you planning to sell standalone mining boards, equipped with ethernet and some small CPU running linux, doing the highlevel work? (Not having a PCIe interface for the individual ASICs would pay off here, I'd really like to have an ARM-based backplane connecting to like 8 miner boards containing 8 or 16 ASICs each, even if that thing might cost a fair bit of money.)
- Will there be a public datasheet for the device, which contains physical/electrical/thermal specifications along with a specification of the software interface (I2C register map or something)? (I consider this way more useful than e.g. an open source linux driver. This is work that the community can do for you if you provide the specs.)

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June 14, 2011, 10:04:04 PM
 #68

Subscribe. Sorry for not contributing anything, but I haven't a clue about hardware stuff (my geekiness stops at the kernel).

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June 14, 2011, 11:22:29 PM
 #69

i'm skipping the gpu fad. never bought a computer that came with a video card. dont mind buying a custom fgpa or asic.
anyone not accounting for moores law is retarded.
also, THANK YOU Mr. Tremblay, this community needs to work like a well oiled machine if bitcoin is to succeed.
also, WHEN CAN MY 3D PRINTER CREATE ASIC FISHES N CHIPS?

Wow.
You sound exactly like one of those middle-aged drill sergeants from Vietnam.
Sure you weren't in the marines?

Do you go online with a large pocket calculator and 28k dial-up?

Sent you a few bitcoins.

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ttul
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June 15, 2011, 05:02:21 AM
 #70

Could you elaborate on some questions, which I believe are not interfering with your competetive reasons, but might be helpful for the community to prepare?
- Will the ASIC itself be sold by your company (or e.g. through digikey)?

We haven't determined this yet, but I would argue it's most likely that we'll be selling complete mining units rather than individual processors. There are applications for Bitcoin technology outside of the public Bitcoin network, and we want to address these opportunities, which don't have an active hobbyist community behind them.

- Have you already decided on the ASICs external interface?
- Are you planning to sell PCIe mining boards based on your ASIC?
- If yes, will the ASIC itself have a PCIe interface, or will the ASICs have a more simple interface, with multiple ASICs connecting to some controller that handles the PCIe interface? (I would strongly encourage the latter)

I can't comment on this yet, except to say that you'll be really delighted by the interface choice. It will permit very easy management of a mining cluster with "zero configuration".

- Are you planning to sell standalone mining boards, equipped with ethernet and some small CPU running linux, doing the highlevel work? (Not having a PCIe interface for the individual ASICs would pay off here, I'd really like to have an ARM-based backplane connecting to like 8 miner boards containing 8 or 16 ASICs each, even if that thing might cost a fair bit of money.)
- Will there be a public datasheet for the device, which contains physical/electrical/thermal specifications along with a specification of the software interface (I2C register map or something)? (I consider this way more useful than e.g. an open source linux driver. This is work that the community can do for you if you provide the specs.)

Documentation will be provided - as I said in my post, we really want the community to get involved in building tools and services around the hardware.
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June 15, 2011, 11:22:20 AM
 #71

Could you elaborate on some questions, which I believe are not interfering with your competetive reasons, but might be helpful for the community to prepare?
- Will the ASIC itself be sold by your company (or e.g. through digikey)?

We haven't determined this yet, but I would argue it's most likely that we'll be selling complete mining units rather than individual processors. There are applications for Bitcoin technology outside of the public Bitcoin network, and we want to address these opportunities, which don't have an active hobbyist community behind them.

It does of course make sense to sell ready-to-use mining units in one or another way. However, I'd expect that the community would build some alternative mining platforms based on your ASIC if you sell the raw chip as well. As you're probably making the big money with the chip and not the board, this might actually increase revenue, as it will probably increase the total number of ASICs sold. (Some enthusiasts would certainly build their own mining rigs based on your chip, and possibly sell those as well.)

- Have you already decided on the ASICs external interface?
- Are you planning to sell PCIe mining boards based on your ASIC?
- If yes, will the ASIC itself have a PCIe interface, or will the ASICs have a more simple interface, with multiple ASICs connecting to some controller that handles the PCIe interface? (I would strongly encourage the latter)

I can't comment on this yet, except to say that you'll be really delighted by the interface choice. It will permit very easy management of a mining cluster with "zero configuration".

If I interpret your answers from above correctly, you're focusing on a standalone mining solution, and not PCIe accelerator cards. I think that's the long-term way to go. This means that the external interface of it is most likely ethernet, with possibly some additional daisy chaining interface.
Oh, and as I said above, if you focus on this, just sell the raw ASICs as well, and let the community care about how to do a PCIe card solution if they want that.

- Are you planning to sell standalone mining boards, equipped with ethernet and some small CPU running linux, doing the highlevel work? (Not having a PCIe interface for the individual ASICs would pay off here, I'd really like to have an ARM-based backplane connecting to like 8 miner boards containing 8 or 16 ASICs each, even if that thing might cost a fair bit of money.)
- Will there be a public datasheet for the device, which contains physical/electrical/thermal specifications along with a specification of the software interface (I2C register map or something)? (I consider this way more useful than e.g. an open source linux driver. This is work that the community can do for you if you provide the specs.)

Documentation will be provided - as I said in my post, we really want the community to get involved in building tools and services around the hardware.

That's nice to hear Smiley
Don't make the same mistakes as certain GPU vendors Wink

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June 15, 2011, 08:02:11 PM
 #72

I'd just like to have the complete design open source, i.e. that I can produce my own chips with enough money.
I think this is what we will have in the end and certainly need as well to keep a dezentralized currency.
Greets, M
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June 15, 2011, 08:03:19 PM
 #73


- Are you planning to sell standalone mining boards, equipped with ethernet and some small CPU running linux, doing the highlevel work? (Not having a PCIe interface for the individual ASICs would pay off here, I'd really like to have an ARM-based backplane connecting to like 8 miner boards containing 8 or 16 ASICs each, even if that thing might cost a fair bit of money.)
- Will there be a public datasheet for the device, which contains physical/electrical/thermal specifications along with a specification of the software interface (I2C register map or something)? (I consider this way more useful than e.g. an open source linux driver. This is work that the community can do for you if you provide the specs.)

Documentation will be provided - as I said in my post, we really want the community to get involved in building tools and services around the hardware.

That's nice to hear Smiley
Don't make the same mistakes as certain GPU vendors Wink

Cool - glad you like the idea. I can see why the GPU vendors guard their drivers, because there is a lot of intelligence in the driver. In our case, the management software and drivers are not giving away much. Just making an ASIC requires a huge NRE investment; and of course we know that the guts of the chip are not rocket science, save for a few careful optimizations. By contrast, the guts of a GPU are rocket science.

I wanted to share some of the results of the above-mentioned survey link. The following pie chart breaks down (in real-time -- thanks, Google Docs!) the community's feedback regarding what would cause them to move from GPU mining to ASIC mining.

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June 15, 2011, 08:06:59 PM
 #74

I'd just like to have the complete design open source, i.e. that I can produce my own chips with enough money.
I think this is what we will have in the end and certainly need as well to keep a dezentralized currency.
Greets, M

I am quite sure that the community is going to provide this regardless of whether our commercialization effort is a success, and having multiple options to choose from will only strengthen Bitcoin. A few things to keep in mind for the community effort, based on what we have learned from our many years of commercializing ASIC designs:

1. The NRE (non-recurring engineering costs) are truly stunning for ASIC production, unless you use simple techniques like a gate-array, which have performance and density drawbacks;

2. ASICs are a "wild west" business, and a great deal of haggling and negotiating is required to get a reasonable price out of the various service providers you'll need to work with to get chips made; and,

3. There are numerous physical pitfalls that can render a design completely useless, introducing delays and increased costs - for example, you may find that you've made a tiny error that can't be corrected in software.

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June 18, 2011, 10:30:40 PM
 #75

So what's going on? Can I already buy some board? Wink

I don't expect anything, but I am listening at 18WN5YRGaBKGPus4n8QHuF7YnyzyDxMRQ6 Wink
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June 19, 2011, 01:06:56 AM
 #76

Watching this thread.

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June 19, 2011, 01:17:32 AM
 #77

Watching this.
Just commenting so I can follow the thread.
bookmarked
Just posting to follow this thread
Following.
Subscribe.
Watching this thread.

Thanks for letting us know, guys, but please use the notify button next time.
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June 19, 2011, 08:03:15 AM
 #78

the notify button, also sends you a mail Sad

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June 22, 2011, 08:04:55 PM
 #79

the notify button, also sends you a mail Sad
aye  Sad

Change your email settings to something it's not.  Try "null".  What other reason would you have your real email address registered at this forum, if not to receive notices?

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July 13, 2011, 12:54:29 AM
 #80

So is this actually happening? Or was it just noise? Or what?

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