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Author Topic: Will the bitcoin arms-race end with ASICs?  (Read 6079 times)
bitcoinarnold
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June 03, 2013, 06:39:59 AM
 #21

Well, if they do come up with a working, functionally complete quantum computer SHA256 calculations become trivial. I don't expect we'll have one any less than 20 years from now. They've only just barely got the first hybrid quantum chips working. I'd love to be wrong though, there are a lot of things we could do with quantum computers that current digital computers suck at.

ASICs will probably get better, especially if fabbed at smaller processes but quantum computers change the game enough that an SHA or scrypt-based Bitcoin would likely not survive. Quantum computers would change the field of cryptography significantly. Because these algorithms are all based on the sums of large primes Shor's algorithm could be used to solve them vast orders of magnitude faster than current computers. Fast enough that one system could conceivably calculate out any and all possible answers fairly quickly. That's just simple COMPSCI 101 stuff.


Sounds like your Compsci 101 failed you. Shor's Algo will not break hashing algo's like SHA, Grover's will. Shors will break ECDSA (bitcoin signing) by solving the ECDLP. I don't expect someone in Compsci 101 to know all of that though.
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af_newbie
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June 03, 2013, 05:43:06 PM
 #22

ASIC's will [probably] be the end of the road, but definitely not the first generation.
They'll just follow some moore law pattern, just like CPU's do.

I think that the hashrate will grow for the next 100 years and it'll still be profitable.
Current ASIC's are like cpu's from 2000. 0.11 micron process of Avalon ASIC's is just like Pentium 3 :-)

It is going to take some time to get to 28nm. 
Ente
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June 04, 2013, 10:44:36 AM
 #23

ASIC's will [probably] be the end of the road, but definitely not the first generation.
They'll just follow some moore law pattern, just like CPU's do.

I think that the hashrate will grow for the next 100 years and it'll still be profitable.
Current ASIC's are like cpu's from 2000. 0.11 micron process of Avalon ASIC's is just like Pentium 3 :-)

It is going to take some time to get to 28nm. 

..that's what we thought about ASICs just a year ago too ;-)

Ente
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June 04, 2013, 07:49:47 PM
 #24

Anyone stealing Bitcoins with quantum computers (or any other technology) is doing a 'Mutually Assured Destruction' of Bitcoin.  Once word is out that Bitcoins can be stolen via brute force attack on the blockchain, it's value as a secured medium of transaction is gone and the price plummets near instantly.

The game will be over for everyone.  Only some entity who wants to destroy Bitcoin would do this.

I hope this can never happen.

1YogAFA... (oh, nevermind)
glendall
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June 05, 2013, 09:58:23 PM
 #25

I'm confident quantum computers will come and they will, of course, be light-years beyond amazing for code-cracking and Bitcoin mining. But having said that, we are still a very long, long way from anything approaching a quantum comp that you can pick up from a local hardware store. It may not even be economically feasible to do this in ... what 40 years?

I haven't been keepin' up with my tech news reading as much these days, but a working reliable early expensive quantum-based computer available even for researchers to order and purchase is at least 10 years away, I'd imagine. So basically so far in the future of BTC that its not worth considering (due to the rate of change). Early working and reliable q. comp's will solely be the property of the NSA and other similar power entities' code-breaking organizations for the first stretch.

Since ASICS are by their nature specialized circuits for mining, they are the end-all for silicon-based, traditional computing Bitcoin mining. Of course we will see Moore's law progression in efficiency for ASICS as tech develops, but I can't see any disruptive change coming anytime reasonable soon that will be anything like the shift from CPUs to GPUs, and now GPUs to ASICS.  If anyone else has any ideas on any potential disruptive tech that could do bring this kind of change besides quantum computing, please share, I'd love to hear about it.
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June 06, 2013, 04:14:30 AM
 #26

There are other types of computers (mostly theoretical atm) that can give and check all possible answers in an equation.  Surely one will come out within 10 years.  It was mentioned they would just be for scientists and military, but if someone sees the profit to make one it will happen. 

I think the answer here is that there will always be encryption of some sort.  With greater computing power comes greater ability to encrypt.

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Ente
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June 06, 2013, 10:44:50 AM
 #27

There are other types of computers (mostly theoretical atm) that can give and check all possible answers in an equation.  Surely one will come out within 10 years.  It was mentioned they would just be for scientists and military, but if someone sees the profit to make one it will happen. 

I think the answer here is that there will always be encryption of some sort.  With greater computing power comes greater ability to encrypt.

Uhm. Yes, that's quantum computing.

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Don't forget we can easily replace the algorithm for mining at any time, as soon as enough miners agree on it. Not all algos are solveable by quantum computing.

Ente
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