What a waste of power!

in LeoFinance8 months ago

From one of my friends today, I got a message into a group chat about the electricity that Bitcoin uses and she asked if "I was okay" with that, since it was said that it uses the same power as the country of Norway to mine Bitcoin. I am not sure that they were calculating it right or not -but I think that even if it did, I still think it is energy well spent, even if it is inefficient.

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The reason I think this is that every new industry is going to have inefficiencies in it and like anything, the unit cost of production for the first units are astronomically expensive, until innovation advances the processes and tools and economies of scale are reached. For example, how much electricity does it take to mine HIVE? Well, that requires the nodes that process the transactions and the people using their computers and phones to interact with it, which because it is done on the surface at the second-layer, is effectively the same as the cost of surfing the internet.

I don't know what the electricity costs of running a HIVE node are, but maybe @blocktrades or @gtg have run the numbers.

I assume though, that is is just like running any other server with the same specs - and they don't need banks of servers in warehouses. The cost is in what type of server is required, the hard-drives and RAM etc. My point is, from a energy perspective, Hive is very efficient and even if you combine all activity on Hive that requires user-side electricity, most are doing things that they would do elsewhere anyway - such as posting to social media and gaming.

But all of this aside, I think that people miss the value of developing new technologies, remembering that this person is still a skeptic of the entire value of crypto and blockchain. What they miss is that everything they use today has gone through a litany of testing and development to bring it to the current level, whatever that may be. The same person wouldn't want the development of electric vehicles to stop and stay using fossil fuels, because the battery tech isn't efficient yet, so why is replacing the economy any different?

I think this is part of the legacy mindset, which I find interesting when it is held by people who are generally forward thinking in other aspects of life, including social development. People seem to want change, but only if that change is convenient, comes at no cost and never makes a mistake. Most people have never known anything other than the economy we have, or at least, haven't recognized alternative economies in their every day world, like that of trading cards and stamp collecting. Because of this, most people can't imagine different.

As I said to my friend, I think that a large part of the problem people have with accepting something like Bitcoin or digital assets is, they try to understand the theory of it, even though they haven't interacted directly with it. This means that they compare it to what they know with analogy, without actually knowing if this the analogy is suitable. With their understanding and example analogies all being connected to the legacy economy processes, it is hard to see how anything else could be better or fill the gaps.

As I said to her - if she is truly interested in learning, it would be far more practical to start participating and learning "on the job" so to speak. This way, she will be able to start to open up a world that has been hidden to her and interact with a large and highly diverse ecosystem with a range of economic tools to use, whether it be the PoW of Bitcoin or dPoS of Hive, the social frontends or the publishing platforms, the gaming and gambling applications, or the staking pools of DeFi. Taking part is really the only way to understand the flavors.

The problem with going from he perspective of theory is that a person tries to define what it is, without getting the sense that what it is, is completely dependent on how it is used. If people want to use Bitcoin as a store of value, it will serve the purpose - and if they want to use it as a currency, it will serve the purpose - albeit inefficiently. It is because of these inefficiencies though, that there is space for all kinds of tokenization and asset creation and how they are developed and more importantly, applied, will determine what they are and ultimately, the value they hold.

We waste electricity on billions of activities daily - I do not consider the the electricity used on innovating the economy so that it is more inclusive and valuable for all participants, a waste. What is a waste of power is us as people not using our potential to improve the world in which we live.

Taraz
[ Gen1: Hive ]

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This is exactly why one-person-one-vote republics fail on every level.
Lies are used to manipulate public sentiment.

Your friend (and many many others) are being misled by blatant propaganda. Big Oil and Central Banks around the world have a financial incentive to attack Bitcoin from any and all vectors.

The entire argument is doublespeak. Bitcoin is criticized for "wasting energy", thus it must be bad for this new Green initiative. In reality, it is funding renewable energy by allowing full scale operations to be built anywhere on the planet.

Before Bitcoin it was impossible to build an array of solar panels out in the middle of nowhere (say the desert). Sure, you can generate a lot of electricity, but how do you transport that resource to people that actually need it? This problem becomes compounded when considering energy monopolies and requiring permission to tap into the grid.

Solving the Byzantine generals problem is a legit miracle that allows energy to be turned into currency anywhere on Earth. So now we have the ability to build full scale renewable energy anywhere and mine Bitcoin with all of the excess energy generated: making the entire project financially viable. This in turn allows growth in that sector of the world to start flourishing because they have a cheap and renewable source of power.

Not only that, the byproduct of mining Bitcoin is heat itself, so if the Bitcoin is mined inside of buildings that required heating anyway, that's a double-whammy in efficiency. The days of Bitcoin miners just sitting in a warehouse collecting dust will not be a thing forever.

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Fuck - I hate failing to mention things to people at the right time. I feel like George Costanza.

Yeah but there isn't any easy way to do it.
They hit you with one sentence and the response is five paragraphs :D

An alternative would be...responding like a true Freudian — with a one line question of your own. Now that would save energy.

Also, they say no energy is lost. Turned into heat, as you pointed out, yeah.

Digitalize me that, Batman ;)

Energy costs for running Hive are quite low, because it uses proof-of-stake instead of proof-of-work to determine who gets to produce the next block in the blockchain. Energy costs for running a regular server in the US are probably around $10/month. Witness computation requirements are very low, so these can even be run on very low power servers at much cheaper rates, whereas an API server will consume more energy because it has to handle all the API traffic (so probably around $10/month for those). So I'd guess that less than $20K per year is spent on energy costs for operating the Hive network, including API servers, and the cost could be lower if anyone was trying to optimize that cost.

Plus free transactions :)

This is pretty much what I expected and thanks for the confirmation.

Out of curiosity, is it at all possible to know how many servers/nodes are supporting the Hive network, or is it blind?

Public nodes can be found by monitoring the p2p traffic. But people can also run private nodes as well. I haven't looked at data like that in a long while though, so I don't recall the numbers.

Bitcoin will have to change to a different model at some point. Right now it is the power of Norway, next year it will be the power of Europe, and after that who knows. The more it grows, the more power it needs to maintain it.

It just isn't sustainable. Same with ETH but they are already in the process of moving to a proof of stake model which is much more efficient.

Hive is much much more efficient energy wise. The power used to run Hive is doing that, running Hive. With Bitcoin 99.9999999% of the energy is used doing hashes that amount to nothing to "prove" your miner is working.

Yep, but there are alternatives out there ad likely more ways to come to handle the transactions. For now, the value of bitcoin is the energy it brings to the entire ecosystem.

I would have asked how much power it takes to keep the printing presses running to pump out all of that cash that the banks are doing now. How much money does it cost to store and protect the gold that they use for the reserves or how much power does it take to keep all of the bank branches open and running. It is things like that which people don't take into account. BTC despite how much power it seems to take now could save a lot of money and energy if it were adopted as a standard.

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I wish we had a 'like' function. I really do agree with your comment AND LOOK AT ALL THE POWER I'VE WASTED ANSWERING SOMETHING I AGREE WITH!!!

Wait? Your bank branches are open? Like people can freely go inside and do bank type transactions? Mine has the drive up window (two employees) open and nothing else. If you need to do anything in person you have to call for an appointment.

My brother the bank Vice President's words. "The pandemic has allowed us to give incredibly shitty service while reducing our work force without any sort of public outcry."

No, we have to only use the drive up. Remember I live in Michigan with the governor that everyone hates apparently (not me). They are still open with people manning the tills when all of this could be done via blockchain and crypto.

Yeah, but I have to use Fiat to pay my water bill and such.

I had a relatively simple problem that could have been handled by a human in maybe 10 minutes. I ended up with 3 hours of phone automated calling. FMB it was brutal. I have the branch manager's desk phone # but that suck up effort came up short when she started working from home.

So, it was my brother trying to send me money from my mother's estate. He said "If you banked with our bank I could handle this in 10 seconds." I said "If you were 1400 miles closer I would do that." We ended up using Apple Pay, and bumping the daily limit. It probably would have been just as fast to send a paper check, but I'd have to use the drive through to deposit.

That sucks! I am sorry you had to go through all of that.

How much money does it cost to store and protect the gold...

I recently heard that buying tickets for our subway system prior to 2020 (meaning, when it was packed full of people and close to bursting) only amounted to enough money to pay those who sold you the tickets. And There Be those ticket vending machines at each entrance, anyway.

Not to mention the risks of centralization.

I gabe examples of wafted energy, but the problem is that because they are already accepted, people don't see it as a waste. The thing is that most of what we do in this world is unnecessary, other than for keeping us busy. Would be nice to be busy doing something useful.

I still find it strange how people talk about how much electricity it cost to mine bitcoin. I wonder if they have ever stopped to think for one minute how much electricity it cost to make all the money in the world, and to protect that money; and all the pollution making that money causes.

No they haven't thought about this. Most people never do as they focus on one thing at a time, with no continuity to the next breath.

I think google has made it to easy for people to not think, just re-act. Some times that phrase "Don't shoot the messenger" should be re-thought.

It is the "re" that is the problem, isn't it. *REpeating what we already know doesn't work. Distribution of wealth is better than redistribution of wealth.

Definitely though. Avoidance has been made very easy, no matter how painful it becomes.

It is a problem, one I think not enough people see at times. It is so simple and so easy to just avoid and accept for people.

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Electricity is nothing - it is the power of the river falling into the abyss, it is the power of the wind, and so on - this is a dead end into which they are trying to lead you - do not care: it does not harm anything - wake up !!!

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This is the next phase. As new sources of electricity generation are developed, it becomes less relevant. As said, the same person wants more electric cars - that electricity needs to come from somewhere too.

I have a big experience and knowledge in GPU MINING. It was hard to mine a BITCOIN unlike ETHEREUM. I am mining ETH and earn more than 100 Dollar in just 1 month using 1 GPU only. And 200 Dollar for 3 GPU but it depends in your GPU model for the hash rate. The question there is the power consumption, Watts. This is the advantage of GPU, you can control the power consumption using the AFTER BURNER.

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The reason I think this is that every new industry is going to have inefficiencies in it and like anything, the unit cost of production for the first units are astronomically expensive, until innovation advances the processes and tools and economies of scale are reached. For example, how much electricity does it take to mine HIVE? Well, that requires the nodes that process the transactions and the people using their computers and phones to interact with it, which because it is done on the surface at the second-layer, is effectively the same as the cost of surfing the internet.

No. The massive energy use is the whole point.

Proof-of-Work deliberately uses a great deal of energy because the sink cost of mining prevents a 51% attack. What means is that if there was no cost to mining a block, then in such a permissionless blockchain such as Bitcoin, a single entity could attack the network by signing a very large number of blocks with falsified information to undermine consensus. Because a proof of work is required, a 51% attack on Bitcoin would be prohibitively expensive.

Proof-of-Stake chains require acquired stake from block validators. Delegated-Proof-of-Stake requires delegated stake from block validators, which is essentially permission granted by stakeholders.

Bitcoin's value proposition is high security through high cost of mining.

Efficiencies have nothing to do with it. Your colleagues asked whether paying the price for Bitcoin's security is worth it. The answer depends on how much you believe in authority. I don't trust monetary authorities and governments not to fuck up the economy eventually. (See @taskmaster4450's posts about the corner the Fed has painted itself in a corner already in the 1990's by printing money excessively and creating a perpetual low interest rate environment leading to the over-financialization of the economy, zombie corporations and so on and so forth.)

I think you have misunderstood, as this is about the entire industry. Also, the mass of power isn't necessary for security, although that is the case now in regards to bitcoin.

Also, it is possible that the value of bitcoin already mined and being used is more attractive than mining the remaining bitcoin, where what is left in the ground just isn't worth it. Transactions still need to be signed though.

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How much electricity does electricity use? The costs of power production is WAY up compared to 5 or 50 years ago. Even with the moves to renewables.

It is a bullshit question. How much does a gallon (or liter :)) of gasoline cost?

So what if BTC miners are using the same amount of power as Norway? It's gaslighting, it means nothing in practical terms.

BTC miners use what ever power it takes until it's too much more than the value of the coins. At which point the value will really soar. What will the last BTC cost?

And after all is said and done, what about Norway? They didn't have such a great year, either :)

We waste electricity on billions of activities daily - I do not consider the the electricity used on innovating the economy so that it is more inclusive and valuable for all participants, a waste. What is a waste of power is us as people not using our potential to improve the world in which we live.

Is it a waste of power to restore a '58 Edsel? Is it a waste of power to produce art that will only be seen and appreciated by an incredibly small fraction of the population?

I just couldn't agree with you more.

People seem to want change, but only if that change is convenient, comes at no cost and never makes a mistake.

Change comes with a trade off. If we want change, we need to accept some things comes from it. Progress comes with a cost and same goes with inventions. The Wright brothers gave as plane, but at the same time, it opens up to the possibility of crashing. If the trade offs for bitcoin is inefficient use of energy, I think we need to develop a technology that enables crypto mining to use electricity efficiently.

What they miss is that everything they use today has gone through a litany of testing and development to bring it to the current level, whatever that may be.

Most people don't realize that it takes time to have what we have rights now. Every technology introduced to us comes from carefully examining key points to make it safe to use and efficient. Blockchain and crypto has along way to go. The current concern on electricity consumption may not be valid later on. Only time will tell.

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