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Author Topic: Bitcoin Addresses: What happens after 20 years?  (Read 3566 times)
S4VV4S
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May 28, 2014, 07:44:32 PM
 #1

So, from what I understand is that Bitcoin addresses can be created "on the fly" at whatever number at a time without the fear of generating a duplicate address because of the chances.

Well, Bitcoin seems to be doing pretty well, so,
what happens after 20 years?

I am pretty sure that at some point unique addresses are going to start running out....

So what happens?

 
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farlack
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May 28, 2014, 07:49:22 PM
 #2

There are this many addresses

1,461,501,637,330,902,918,203,684,832,716,283,019,655,932,542,976


S4VV4S
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May 28, 2014, 07:51:33 PM
 #3

There are this many addresses

1,461,501,637,330,902,918,203,684,832,716,283,019,655,932,542,976




What, currently or possible?
Syke
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May 28, 2014, 07:52:42 PM
 #4

So, from what I understand is that Bitcoin addresses can be created "on the fly" at whatever number at a time without the fear of generating a duplicate address because of the chances.

Well, Bitcoin seems to be doing pretty well, so,
what happens after 20 years?

I am pretty sure that at some point unique addresses are going to start running out....

The sun will run out of fuel before we run out of addresses.

Buy & Hold
farlack
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May 28, 2014, 07:53:47 PM
 #5

There are this many addresses

1,461,501,637,330,902,918,203,684,832,716,283,019,655,932,542,976




What, currently or possible?

Possible. We wont ever reach that.
DeathAndTaxes
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May 28, 2014, 07:54:10 PM
 #6

There are this many addresses

1,461,501,637,330,902,918,203,684,832,716,283,019,655,932,542,976




What, currently or possible?

The number of possible addresses (2^160)

Currently there are only 6M addresses associated with any unspent output ("funded").

If you are worried assume there are 1 billion Bitcoin users and they each generate 1 billion new addresses per day.  How long would it take to generate 1% of the possible addresses.
steelboy
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May 28, 2014, 07:54:21 PM
 #7

So, from what I understand is that Bitcoin addresses can be created "on the fly" at whatever number at a time without the fear of generating a duplicate address because of the chances.

Well, Bitcoin seems to be doing pretty well, so,
what happens after 20 years?

I am pretty sure that at some point unique addresses are going to start running out....

So what happens?

 

lol, i don't know exactly but the figures are ridiculous. Something like if an address is created every second it would be trillions of years before we run out. Probably more to be honest Cheesy
farlack
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May 28, 2014, 07:56:01 PM
 #8

Everyone on the planet would have to have like 200,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 wallets to duplicate.
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May 28, 2014, 08:17:11 PM
 #9

There are 2^160 unique addresses, that is around 1.4 x 10^48
The blockchain reports that only 200000 unique addresses were ever used, that is 2 x 10^5
https://blockchain.info/charts/n-unique-addresses

Estimated from the chart, used addresses triple every year.
In 20 years time, we could have used 7 x 10^14 addresses,
The address space will still be 2 x 10^33 times more than the used addresses.

Probability of address collision is still extremely low, but yes, it does made you feel less assured.

GogglesPisano
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May 28, 2014, 08:33:14 PM
 #10

Very informative, I have often wondered about this myself.

dandate2
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May 28, 2014, 08:54:53 PM
 #11

Possibility of abiogenesis (life created on earth without God) has been calculated:

1 out of 10,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000

So don't think we'll run out of wallets
Jcw188
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Carpe Diem


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May 28, 2014, 09:20:05 PM
 #12

I assume this factors in the fact that many people are trying to get vanity addresses?  how fast can these generators generate new addys?
jc01480
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May 28, 2014, 09:30:48 PM
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We'll all be 20 years older.

DannyHamilton
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May 28, 2014, 09:46:12 PM
 #14

I assume this factors in the fact that many people are trying to get vanity addresses?  how fast can these generators generate new addys?

It doesn't matter.  It isn't a concern.

Many people seem to have a very difficult time comprehending just how big the numbers we are dealing with are.

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May 28, 2014, 09:52:37 PM
 #15

That is a giant scale simply put their are enough generated addresses that it would not run out for a long time
Anyways here is the FAQ should help answer most questions
https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/FAQ

drrussellshane
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May 28, 2014, 10:37:21 PM
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I assume this factors in the fact that many people are trying to get vanity addresses?  how fast can these generators generate new addys?

It doesn't matter.  It isn't a concern.

Many people seem to have a very difficult time comprehending just how big the numbers we are dealing with are.

In their defense, the human brain itself is not particularly good with grokking such large numbers.

Buy a TREZOR! Premier BTC hardware wallet. If you're reading this, you should probably buy one if you don't already have one. You'll thank me later.
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May 28, 2014, 10:47:34 PM
 #17

At my current calculations it would take all 7 billion people in the world to use 2,087,859,481,901,289,883,148 addresses. in other words, they would all have to generate 114,403,259,282,262,459 a day for 50 YEARS to run out of addresses. Running out of addresses is unfathomable.

galbros
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May 28, 2014, 11:05:54 PM
 #18

At my current calculations it would take all 7 billion people in the world to use 2,087,859,481,901,289,883,148 addresses. in other words, they would all have to generate 114,403,259,282,262,459 a day for 50 YEARS to run out of addresses. Running out of addresses is unfathomable.

Stuff like this is actually helpful.  While I realized the number of addresses was huge the thought had occurred to me that each person makes millions of financial transactions and so putting the number in terms like that really helps.

And yes, people are really poor with really big numbers, even distinguishing between millions, billions, and trillions taxes them.

Good Luck!
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May 28, 2014, 11:06:56 PM
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This topic made me chuckle Smiley

nkocevar
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May 28, 2014, 11:26:17 PM
 #20

At my current calculations it would take all 7 billion people in the world to use 2,087,859,481,901,289,883,148 addresses. in other words, they would all have to generate 114,403,259,282,262,459 a day for 50 YEARS to run out of addresses. Running out of addresses is unfathomable.

Stuff like this is actually helpful.  While I realized the number of addresses was huge the thought had occurred to me that each person makes millions of financial transactions and so putting the number in terms like that really helps.

And yes, people are really poor with really big numbers, even distinguishing between millions, billions, and trillions taxes them.

Good Luck!

haha hey, these calculations literally took 45 seconds. All I did was copy and paste into the windows calculator xD Glad I could help though!

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