Bram Cohen is the infamous coder who invented BitTorrent. He has recently kick started a new company under the name Chia Network, in the hopes of creating a cryptocurrency that will ultimately rival with bitcoin. One of the main reasons he thinks this will win over bitcoin is the fact that bitcoin consumes a huge amount of energy. It takes the same amount of energy to get a block of bitcoin transactions as it does to power the average home in the United States for an entire week. While that energy is critical to keeping the network active and secure, it is still a ton of energy none-the-less.
Chia Network is hoping to change the playing field by launching a cryptocurrency that is not based on bitcoin’s proof of work, but rather, on proofs of storage and time. Chia Network is being promoted as an economically friendly cryptocurrency thanks to the fact that it will be harnessing abundant, cheap underutilized storage space on hard drives that will prove its blockchain. Seeing as the resources that are required to energize Chia Network are already on computers, they simply are not being used, it seems logical to harness that power and put it to good use.
A Quick History Lesson About Bram Cohen
In the early 2000s, Bram Cohen invented BitTorrent, which he is widely known for, as it made is possible for peer to peer transfers over the internet.
Bram then worked with Valve, aiding in the development of Steam. This was when he changed the way live video transfers through peer to peer transfers took place by using his original work with BitTorrent. While there was a problem with management and the project fell apart, he left the company in August. Though Steam is still in the works, Bram is no longer apart of the project. Instead, he turned his attention to Chia Network.
Bram teamed up with Ryan Singer, who is widely known as they COO of Tradehill, which was a bitcoin exchange.
What Makes Chia Different From Bitcoin?
Bitcoin has an advantage in the sense that it requires proof of work in order to prove the blockchain. This means that bitcoin is insanely secure since it is extremely expensive to try to fake a blockchain. This is because there just would not be enough work shown as compared to a real blockchain. There just is not enough energy to make a fake blockchain pass as real.
While that may seem like a great plan to have in place, there are complications that come along with that protocol. As time passes, those who are hosted in areas where electricity is less expensive and it is naturally cool, will have an advantage over those who do not. That is because those people would have lower overhead costs than people who live elsewhere, which leads to the mining power being centralized and that is not what cryptocurrency is all about seeing as eventually, that would centralize the control in the bitcoin community.
This is why Bram Cohen originally wanted to start Chia Network – to offer an alternative to bitcoin and its work done procedure. Chia Network runs on proofs of space in a storage file. This gives everyone a fair shot as nearly everyone has file storage available, which in turn, means they can farm for this cryptocurrency for free. Another thing that they have going for them is that they have combined proofs of time with proofs of space. This means that it cannot be attacked as easily as other proofs of space currencies have.
So How Does Chia Network Work?
Chia Network’s main goal is to make an improved version of bitcoin while solving the problem of centralization. While Chia is moving past bitcoin’s proof of work policy, it is bringing more to the table by allowing farmers – their version of miners – a stronger foundation to build with economically in the future.
The process is as follows:
When a new block is farmed, it is spread very quickly to all full nodes. This is when farmers begin working on the very top of that block. There is a full network of nodes that keeps the full history of the network and all of the pending transactions saved and readily available. The nodes quickly spread three of the heaviest histories that are known to every peer. This is in comparison to bitcoin’s only spreading one heavy history between its peers. New blocks are published to the network, before farmers find the best proof of space they have available to them. After that, three of the best proofs quickly spread the change to the whole network while proof of time servers begin working on the top of them. When the time server is complete, the whole thing is published as a validated block which is then released into the network to build on top of again, thus using far less energy than that of bitcoin and their process.
Chia Network Conclusion
While they decline to comment on just how much money has been raised, Chia Network has successfully gained some funding to back this project. Chia Network has stated that they hope to begin releasing Chia in the second quarter of next year with their initial coin offering being launched by the tail end of next year.
In November, Chia Network officially launched their website and have been building a following ever since. While there is not a lot of information readily available right now, it is expected that by the beginning of next year, there will be more and more information about Chia Network and what they plan to bring to the cryptocurrency community.
With any luck, their vision of becoming the better version of bitcoin will come into view. They have a strong foundation and a legendary inventor and coder backing them and it will be interesting to see where this project, company and cryptocurrency goes in the years to come.