n00b question #1: Edit
Looking at block explorer it looks like we're on block 134516 (is that correct?)
And at the end of each block, the hasher gets to "mint" a certain number of bitcoins... (correct?)
Right now it's 50 (yes)? Did it used to be more? (100?) or did it start at 50? (don't know how to locate older blocks that aren't on the first page...)
Anyway, assuming each block is sequential (are they?), and that they started at 1 (did they?), there would be 50 x 134516 (or 6`725`800) BTC in existence. That can't be right-- right?
Just curious how close we are to that 2 million mark.
: hmm found part of the answer here: https://forum.bitcoin.org/index.php?topic=12530.0
, it is about 6 million (http://blockexplorer.com/q/totalbc
...) So what's the total? Is it 21 million? I thought it was something with a 2...Edit
: ahh yeah, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bitcoin#Monetary_differences
It is 21 million.n00b question #2:
The mining difficulty increases every so often right? Is there a way to find the history of difficulty increases? I was hoping to coorelate difficulty increases to the different exchanges' prices and see if there was anything to see... (yay, let's try science!)n00b question the third:
As a pool miner, how do I know that 100% of the work I'm being sent is actualling mining work and that I'm not helping the operator build a hash table or something on the side? (I'm assuming my client calls 'getwork', gets back data, I hash it, and send the results back, yes?) -- also if we hit that 2 million mark (or max mark, whatever), and we have all this uber Th/s infrastructure in place for mining, what's to stop those pools from collectively cracking people's wallet encryptions (or other encryptions...?) I'm assuming since each trasnaction is signed by the sender, that addresses that have never sent anything (or only send very little) would be easier to crack (because there will be more matching solutions that can fool the network), right?
Thanks, any insight into the above would be appreciated.