The developers of Vertcoin, the ASIC-resistant alternative cryptocurrency, answered questions Sunday in an ‘Ask Me Anything’ thread on the currency’s dedicated Reddit page, revealing improvements and new developments at play in the Vertcoin world.
Vertcoin developer a432511 announced a few key accomplishments and developments in progress that he hopes will improve Vertcoin value and combat price drops:
-PR/marketing campaign – A new PR and marketing campaign is under way that involves “a multi-channel advertising campaign starting with Facebook and ending with a press release (served through a press release service to the wire) after our successful release of Stealth Addresses.”
-Stealth Addresses – In what is said to be a huge achievement, developers announced the implementation of Stealth Addresses, which provide more privacy on the public ledger, in turn making the coin more viable for business use.
“Stealth addresses strike a good balance – all the transactions are still on the block chain to be seen, but the link between an address and an individual is obfuscated. One thing that not many people seem to consider when talking about anonymity systems in cryptocurrencies is that true anonymous payments make all the block chain tools you’re used to useless.
Stealth addresses increase privacy for a recipient by allowing you to publish a stealth address, which is like a seed that the sender then uses to generate a unique one-use Vertcoin address for the transaction. All the transactions remain public on the block chain, but knowing the entire transactional history of your stealth address is now no-longer possible except for you, the holder of the secret key.”
-iOS wallet (Vertiet) – Submitted to the Apple app store for approval last week.
-Windows Phone wallet (Vertlet for Windows Phone – in progress) – Currently a work in progress being developed by a432511 from scratch.
-Vertcoin.org redesign – Website redesign is in progress, which will provide a better look and feel.
-“Renewed discussion and commitment to ASIC resistance to keep our mining decentralized.”
-“Lines in the water for more payment processor acceptance.”
What is Vertcoin?
Vertcoin offers a solution to the problem of centralized mining so prevalently found in the Bitcoin world. In an attempt to monopolize mining power, companies spent millions of dollars building application specific integrated circuits (ASIC) devices, which made GPUs and CPUs obsolete in the mining process.
When Bitcoin first started out, nearly anyone with a computer could mine for coins. But as the mining difficulty increased, people began spending tens of thousands of dollars on specialized mining devices known as ASICs. Most Bitcoin mining is now completed by large scale, expensive data centers, resulting in a more centralized network – the opposite of what Bitcoin is designed to be. As these large scale mining pools (Ghash.io, CEX.io) grow bigger, so does the threat of a 51 percent attack (as recently seen with GHash.io).
Litecoin attempted to fix this problem by utilizing the Scrypt hashing algorithm to deter ASIC use, but there are now Scrypt ASICs by dedicated Scrypt ASIC companies and older Bitcoin ASIC mining companies as well.
That’s where Vertcoin comes into play. “By taking the foundations of Bitcoin and making some adjustments, Vertcoin punishes miners who use powerful machines and work together in ‘pools’ to monopolize the mining market,” reported the Intentional Business Times.
To do this, Vertcoin developers introduced the “Adaptive N-Factor” component, which allows Scrypt to determine how much memory is required to compute the hashing functions. Per the white paper, Vertcoin N-Factor increases with time to stay one step ahead of any possible ASIC development.
“For the long, foreseeable future, GPU computing will be the fastest method of computation for Vertcoin, but CPU computation will eventually make gains as N-factor increases.Vertcoin was created using Litecoin as a base, and has an adaptive N-factor applied based on the timestamp of blocks generated. Instead of using a fixed value of 10, such as Litecoin does, the Vertcoin N-factor begins at 11 and gradually increases over time.”