Just noticed... The difficulty algo needs to be looked at/fixed. We have some people playing with the blockchain. I feel this is more important than getting the client code updated to the latest LTC release. Fixing the algo will require a hardfork so it needs to be done carefully with plenty of time (perhaps months) for people to upgrade.
Look at blocks around 769152 to see what im talking about.
I appreciate you calling attention to this. We've faced problems with this before. I'll note that a handy workaround that I've used before is adding a high (100-300 NYAN) transaction fee to make it profitable for prohashing to solve the next block (the fundamental problem is external hit-and-run pools taking advantage of our low difficulty to get a lot of easy NYAN, then leaving once the difficulty is gone, and not having enough baseline hashing power to make that unprofitable to start and to solve it once it happens; prohashing is smart enough to consider pending transaction fees, and so since the block reward is 168.5, it can be pretty cheap to make the coin profitable enough to mine).
Copying my reply from Reddit before for laziness (for the rest reading this, the whole thread is at: https://www.reddit.com/r/nyancoins/comments/3dnjth/blockchain_being_toyed_with/
I appreciate the suggestion, but I am not yet convinced of the necessity.
I am extremely conservative about making hard fork changes. The switch to PoS would have been huge and I would have been willing to try the risks involved. But that developer disappeared, and I think at this point, we need to work with what we've got.
I don't think that our system is unworkable. We just need people, like yourself, who are willing and able to mine Nyancoins for the sake of Nyancoins rather than an immediate market sale (which is unworkable because it means we lose the miners with a difficulty spike).
The difficulty *should* spike when we get a lot of hashing power coming in.
I don't think the alternatives suggested are preferable. AuxPOW: this means that miners who don't have any inherent interest in Nyancoins get the mining rewards. I would much rather have people decide to dedicate hardware in order to mine. AuxPOW allows cost-free attacks: we could face exactly the same situation we're facing now (hit-and-run) and they wouldn't even lose the use of the hardware for mining other coins during the hit. This would allow them to drive up the difficulty far more at no cost. In addition, we lose the incentive to dedicated miners.
This is, to a large extent, a learning coin. We want to provide opportunities to newcomers in all areas. One of the ways to do this, in mining, is to keep what we have: we have a very low barrier to entry for people to be able to get a mining unit which will be able to make a significant impact on our reliability and allow them to earn a significant amount of Nyancoins. If we were on AuxPOW, the barrier to entry would be significantly higher.
I don't know the details of POSv, but as I recall, and from the name, it's a PoS variant. There are a number of issues with this. One of them is that it means abandoning our current major pool, prohashing. I don't want to do this. Although my current plan for Nyancoins 2.0 involves a hardfork, it's one that I believe they will follow (they need an exchange, and that's the more challenging part, but they won't inherently resist it). They are good enough that if we had consensus, they might agree to stop mining the old PoW if we went PoS, but they are a Scrypt PoW based pool and would not be able to help secure our network if we went to PoS.
I do think it's worth considering a PoS Nyancoins in the future. But I believe that Nyancoins PoW must and will continue no matter what. Further, I don't believe we're strong enough for two coins at the present time. What this means to me is: we work with what we've got and we consider fancy new stuff in the future (counting PoS here even though, yes, it's stable and established at this point; but it's shiny and new compared to Nyancoins tech).
I hope I can persuade you, as it sounds like you could be a major miner for us. I would much rather see us have a small, relatively centralized couple of Nekonauts mining rather than AuxPOW. And I don't want the risk (guarantee) of a community split that would come from PoS at this point. If PoS had come when it was first proposed, or even a few months ago, I think it might have had a chance. And, of course, as a major holder, I would have, at least on the surface, stood to benefit quite a bit from eliminating the dependence on mining hardware and changing the rewards to going to the large holders willing to maintain a server. I would have basically taken over the processing at that point.
But, again, with where we are now, I think we need to move forward as best we can. I don't think the difficulty algorithm is fundamentally flawed. Instead, we are simply seeing what happens when we depend on external-to-our-community power which dwarfs our own.