July 2014

Viewing posts from July , 2014

PoW Algorithm Upgrade : Lyra2


I am pleased to announce Vertcoin will be changing its Proof of Work algorithm to Lyra2. Lyra2 is a password hashing scheme much like Scrypt that is not easily parallelizable and has scaling hardware difficulty that depends on memory and processing power.

Vertcoin has always been and will continue to be the leader in decentralization of cryptocurrency. Lyra2 is a natural successor of Scrypt providing an improvement on the same fundamental purpose Рscaling hardware difficulty. The decision to move to this algorithm comes as a preemptive strike against ASICs and a move against Multipools. As many of you know, we have several concepts in the hopper to remain in step with the Vertcoin charter РVertcoin’s [algorithm] is designed to resist the development of custom mining hardware and multipool mining, ensuring that transactions are validated by a widely distributed network and avoiding the selling pressure when large mining pools indiscriminately flood the market with freshly mined coins.

The Lyra2 whitepaper details its performance against custom hardware and offers a comparison to Scrypt. Most notably, Lyra2 improves on Scrypt by offering separate control over memory and processing difficulty where in Scrypt they are tightly coupled. This level of control is important when reacting to specialized hardware that comes to market.

There is still much work to be done before we roll it out. Here is a approximate timeline:

  1. Derive appropriate initial memory and cpu levels to roughly match the current level (8/15/2014)
  2. Implement the new algo in all the wallets including mobile (10/15/2014)
  3. Run final testing on testnet (11/15/2014)
  4. Final release to mainnet (11/30/2014)

– These are estimates, we may move faster –

Bushido and I will be running point on this effort. During this time we are looking to add a developer to our ranks. The reality is that even developers have lives ( believe it or not ūüėÄ ) and can’t always dedicate tons of time to these projects. Diversifying our resource pool will only strengthen and quicken us.

If you have experience in C/C++, ObjC or Java and would like to join the team, please email [email protected]



Block Maturation Vote


As promised, the first “real” VertVote is live. Please visit https://vertvote.com to cast your vote on increasing (or not) the block maturation period.

A little background: This suggestion is to address Multipool mining because it increases the uncertainty of the value of each block mined. Multipools make a decision to mine a coin based on profitability with¬†the assumption they can quickly sell at the current price. Increasing the maturation time means they need to hold the coin longer and thus don’t know the price will be the same when it comes time to sell. Some have cited the obvious¬†negative of such a change would be that coins remain un-spendable for longer for everyone. Also, theoretically, if traditional pool operators decide to pay miners before the full block maturation period, it may¬†incent people to switch away from P2P, which by its nature requires the full block maturation period as rewards are paid directly.



Announcing VertVote


There has been much discussion surrounding updates to the coin and many have asked when we will make a decision on those changes.

The options we have been discussing would be significant changes to the coin and thus, it is only fitting we have a broader conversation on these matters.

So how do we pose these questions without opening ourselves up to non-Vertans attempting to sabotage the result? Turns out the solution is already an integral part of cryptocurrency – address signatures.

Enter VertVote: A way for the core development team to pose questions to the broader community helping to decentralize the decision making process. Much like VertVerser, VertVote is build on a flexible API that could be integrated into our wallets at any time. Imagine getting a slick notification that a new poll requires your vote!


Simple choose a response to the poll that is displayed, enter your vertcoin address and sign the message as requested. Once the balance on your address and the signature is validated, your vote will be recorded.



Note: There are no active polls at the moment. I will post again as soon as a new poll is up for your votes! (soon, very soon)

Multipools, Inflation, ASICs

Vertans and Visitors,

There is a lot of debate happening right now regarding how to handle multipools, inflation and –¬†to some degree¬†– what to do if¬†ASICs actually land for Scrypt-N.

Nothing has been decided, but here are some of the ideas on the table:

  1. Shark Bite Subsidy – A harsh reduction of the block subsidy when an increase in difficulty above the average increase in difficulty is detected. The subsidy then moves back toward the default subsidy over a period of a few days.
  2. Plain Vanilla Subsidy Reduction – An early reduction in the block subsidy.
  3. Increase Block Maturation Period – The idea here is that you have to hold your mined coins longer.
  4. Algorithm Change – This is mainly an early “what if” for ASICs.


This is all FDO (For Discussion Only) at the moment. We understand that any changes have serious implications, which is why we are taking our time weighing all the options if any change is made at all.


PR / Marketing Campaign

For those of you who haven’t been monitoring the Vertcoin sub-reddit, the Vertcoin team started a PR / Marketing fundraising campaign using vertcoinmarket.com¬†– a site much like Kickstarter. I am happy to say that we were successful in raising over 5,000VTC for this effort!


Considering you are already here reading this post, you know that we also have a new website! All the stars have aligned and it’s time to move forward with the advertisements.


So far the reddit and BitInfoCharts ads have been purchased. The BitInfoCharts ad will run for a month with over 50,000 impressions! The reddit campaign starts 7/14/2014 and will run on the /r/CryptoCurrency sub-reddit for 3 months.


Stay tuned for more updates!