This is what you need to know about Proof of Work in Cryptocurrency

Fredrick Awino

Proof of Work (PoW) is a system, which needs a feasible amount of effort in deterring malicious utilization of computing power. Basically, PoW is the mechanism used in verifying new transactions, creating new tokens, and adding them to the blockchain. Besides, it secures cryptocurrencies including Ethereum as well as Bitcoin.

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PoW is what manages the Bitcoin transactions while also securing the network. The main feature of crypto is its decentralization nature. Also, the PoW protocol helps during the mining process. For instance, in the mining process, nodes compete in ensuring that information in every transaction block is accurate.

Meaning of PoW

PoW was first used by Bitcoin and this makes mining and PoW highly linked. The miners are the ones who verify and secure the proof of work blockchains as they race to solve a mathematics puzzle. The miner updates the blockchain with the latest transactions. Also, the person is rewarded with the network with a certain amount of crypto which is predetermined.

How does PoW Actually Work?

In case an individual sends you crypto, the transaction is registered in a block having other transactions. The transaction is registered with a timestamp. After that, communication is made in a decentralized network.

The network nodes make validation of the information by competing among them in getting the solution to more difficult mathematical riddles. Also, they offer a solution on a trial-and-error basis till one gets the correct number. The number does not have to be exact; it may be almost the same as the other number. After getting the number, it is communicated to the other machines. After most of the nodes agree and the miner has solved a problem, traders achieve a consensus.

In this work, the miner gets a reward which comes as transaction fees. The transaction is then added to the decentralized ledger making it part of the blockchain. Meaning it cannot be removed or even deleted. Time, energy, and computational power are utilized before the varied nodes compete and reach a solution.

While the problems are increasing, the costs also increase the incentives one gets making it difficult for people to cheat. The miners are the ones who execute proof of work as it helps in adding new blocks in the crypto blockchain. The network accepts a new block every time a miner has a new winning proof of work. This takes place every ten minutes.

In short, PoW the following steps are involved:

  1. Pooling of transactions into a block
  2. Miners compete in being the first to solve a challenging mathematical problem
  3. Processing of new block
  4. Updating of blockchain.

The Role of Proof of Work in Cryptocurrencies

First, it is a good way of developing positive incentives for individuals. It is a reward for the resources that they invested. The process of computing a hash is mainly made challenging. Therefore, by making participants invest some amount of money, the PoW mechanism establishes a disincentive from trying to undermine the integrity of blockchain integrity.

Secondly, it is proof of work that reduces the potential of single crypto such as Bitcoin from being used severally. Double spending has been prevented as it would have destroyed crypto’s confidence. Moreover, it is the only way used by miners in creating well-formed transaction blocks in adding them to the blockchain. The miners are generally turning the energy, which they utilize in finding valid blocks to money.

Crypto mining is a competition in which miners race in being the first to solve the cryptographic puzzles. This enables them to add the next block in a blockchain as well as get paid in form of crypto coins such as Ethereum and Bitcoins. The winner gets a reward after other systems through PoW in the network verify that the solution is valid and correct.

The Cryptos Using PoW

  • Monero
  • Litecoin
  • Dogecoin
  • Bitcoin Cash
  • Monero

Importance of Proof of Work

PoW is important in enhancing trust in a trustless system. When the miners make an agreement in competing for a reward that creates the next block, they agree to work according to the rules. It means that there is no need for them to manipulate blockchain in benefitting them.

Increasing the difficulty of mining a coin as well as verification ensures that there is no excessive mining. In a way it keeps the network running by giving the miners incentives. PoW is also not scalable.

Advantages of Proof of Work

PoW has a very high level of security. Because of this, most cryptocurrencies including Bitcoin are using it. Also, it needs extensive computing resources making it challenging for other people to manipulate the system.  In a way, it provides a decentralized form of validating crypto transactions. It is through PoW that ensures miners earn the crypto rewards. After miners have validated new crypto transaction blocks, they earn a profit.

The disadvantages of Proof of Work

The first disadvantage of using this system is that it has so expensive fees and slow transaction speeds. Also, the energy used is so high meaning that a lot of power has to be used to support the mining activities. Thus, expensive hardware is needed.

Moreover, the equipment that is needed in performing the process is high and technical. For the new miners, this may be a difficult process. It means that because of the technicalities in PoW, large crypto mining firms, as well as pools, have high chances of succeeding as compared to individuals.

Getting PoW is challenging. The reason is that it is the only way of offering miners the need of winning new cryptos. It means that they must invest in specialized and expensive computers. Miners earn every crypto by guessing matching crypto.




Author Fredrick Awino