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Ethereum

Ethereum Classic gets ready to go to Atlantis

  • ETC developers team announced two significant updates.
  • ETC/USD broke above SMA50 weekly for the first time since August 2018.

Ethereum Classic developers have released  Astor testnet update to make the network resistant to 51% attack. Astor is based on ECIP-1059 and uses SHA3 or Keccack256 cryptographic signature.

“SHA3 Mining on Astor Testnet has begun! My 2 CPU miners are currently putting out a combined 435,000 hashes per second. A remarkable performance from SHA3 – a true mark of quality,” Alex Tsankov tweeted.

He also said that SHA3 protocol would ensure transparency and allow for equal opportunity to the miners around the globe.

In a separate development, the team behind  Ethereum Classic announced the last call before a major Atlantis upgrade. ETC Core Developers are supposed to finalize the update today during a conference call. They will have to either accept or reject Atlantis (ECIP-1054) which is in the last call state.

Meanwhile, Ethereum Classic (ETC) has gained over 10% in recent 24 hours and hit $8.89 during early Asian hours, which is the highest level since November 2018. By the time of writing, ETC/USDretreated to $8.5, though the upside momentum remains strong as long as the coin stays above $8.00.

ETC broke above SMA50 (Simple Moving Average) on a weekly chartfor the first time since August 2018. If the price manages to settle above this barrier, the long-term technical picture will improve significantly with the next focus on $10.00. Once it is cleared, the upside is likely to gain traction and take the price to $13.00-$13.20 (23.6% Fibo retracement for the significant downside movement from all-time high).

ETC/USD, weekly chart

Ethereum

DeFi attacks reignite centralization dilemma, debates on protocol reliability

With so much innovation going on in the space, DeFi has become a big rising star over the years. In a more recent milestone, DeFi apps on the Ethereum network hit an all-time high of $1.21 billion on 15 February. And while it has had its problems, given its short history, maybe hiccups are merely part and parcel of its development.

Source: DeFi Pulse | Total Value Locked [USD] in DeFiWhile a little turbulence in the still-nascent space is inevitable, the faith in DeFi is being tested after the decentralized protocol bZx was compromised recently in back-to-back “flash loan” attacks. This attack shook the DeFi realm. However, according to Arcane Research’s recent blog,“Most DeFi applications are based on Ethereum and therefore have a seed that provides administrator access for the dev team. Different protocols have approached this point of centralization differently”

Centralization conundrum

Some address this point of centralization by adding an anonymization element to the smart contracts on the protocol, while others leverage an administrator intervention delay dynamic. The latter enables users to respond to changes to the protocol before the changes take effect.

However, the worrying part is the fact that there are a few protocols that are not as transparent. This puts a big question mark, not only on the reliability of the protocol’s dev team, but also on the operational security of the team, with the team forced to assure people that their administrator key will not be compromised by other malicious entities.

What this recent attack did was reignite the age-old centralization conundrum and the fact that nothing is ever 100% decentralized. Arcane Research also noted,

“Ultimately, its of upmost importance that users of DeFi applications are aware that the DeFi apps are not necessarily fully decentralized, and the implications this may entail.”

Besides Ethereum

And while Ethereum takes a large chunk of the cake when it comes to decentralized finance [DeFi] applications, other blockchain networks such as EOS, Cosmos, and Polkadot. The centralized architecture of EOS has called some bad press lately, however, there are a number of financial projects that are being built on it.

Cardano, a project whose next phase Goguen will focus on smart contracts, also has a roadmap for DeFi on its network. However, at this point, Ethereum dominates the space and not everyone in the Cardano ecosystem is happy about it. In fact, on an episode of The Cardano Effect, Nicolás Arqueros, CTO of Emurgo as well as Cardano Foundation Council Member, had said,

“A lot of the startups just follow the users. So, right now most of them are building in Ethereum, but they do not like it at all. Whenever there is a new option that is better, they are ready to jump as long as it does not affect their users. Also, it’s not only important to focus on the startups, because they do not have that much money and they are trying to survive.”

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Ethereum poised for 200% pump; just ask the options traders

It’s no surprise Ethereum traders are high on optimism, but looking at the derivatives market for the altcoin, their heads are certainly in the clouds.

Since the beginning of the year, the price of Ether has skyrocketed by over 100 percent, surpassing even the likes of Bitcoin. No other altcoin can compare to Ethereum’s bullish run and if the expectations of traders turn to market-reality, the most valuable altcoin will become even more valuable.

With Ether priced at just under $280 at press time, its Options market pegs its price at a whopping $800 in the next 7 months, a 200 percent-plus increase. The option contract with a strike price of $800 and an expiry of 25 September 2020 was trading with a volume of 400 ETH, prior to the price drop.

Deribit- ETH Options Volume | Source: skew

Other ETH Options contracts traded on Deribit have a far more measured but bearish outlook, given the immediate price drop. As the ETH price dropped by over 2.5 percent in the past 4 hours, taking the price to $256, the option contract with a strike of $255 saw over 950 ETH in volume, with an expiry date of 26 February.

The ETH at the money volatility structure shows an increase in the skew to June, rising as high as 87 percent, followed by a drop to 84 percent as September comes around.

For the people that hold the $800 ETH Options contracts, the odds are not looking too good, however, from the current market perspective. The probability of the spot price rallying alongside such optimism, to put it mildly, and touching the price of $800 in September, is a measly 4 percent.

Probability of ETH above maturity | Source: skew

Owing to the price rebounding from the high of $288 to a low of $255, this price breakout has been tested for the past two weeks. Based on this retreat, the implied volatility for Ether, in the short 1-month time frame which was above its 3-month and 6-month equivalents, fell on 24 February, owing to low volatility.

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HOW TO BUILD AN ETHEREUM MINING RIG AT HOME IN 2020

The Rundown

  • Ethash Still Accessible to Home-Based Mining Rigs
  • How to Build an Ethereum Mining Rig
  • Ethereum Mining Continues to Grow
  • Mining 1 ETH May Also Cost 1 ETH

Ethereum (ETH) has become more appealing in 2020, with prices rising above $270. Mining has also picked up, awarding 2 ETH each 15 seconds, or 8 ETH per minute.

ETHASH STILL ACCESSIBLE TO HOME-BASED MINING RIGS

In 2020, the Ethash algorithm is still amenable to home-based mining, and it is possible to build a rig and compete for block rewards.

An Ethereum mining rig is best built using GPU. Currently, there are specialized rigs with about 200 million hashes per second. However, the Ethereum community favors a potential hard fork to disable any Ethash-optimized ASIC.

Thus, it is safer to still use GPU, which is more agile and in a cinch, can be directed at new networks. Yet, some GPUs are optimized and achieve better performance with Ethash. At-home mining necessarily uses consumer electricity, which may affect profitability. However, mining is also a risky game and in cases of rising market prices for ETH, it may have a more significant payout further down the line.

HOW TO BUILD AN ETHEREUM MINING RIG

Building up sufficient hashing power is a matter of connecting more GPUs to achieve the rig’s final setup. Currently, AMD Radeon VII is the most powerful card, producing 90 MH/s, with ProgPoW reaching 30 MH/s. Combining several video cards will quickly raise the price of the rig, as the AMD Radeon VII retails for above $500.14 BTC & 30,000 Free Spins for every player, only in mBitcasino’s Crypto Love Affair! Play Now!

Building a rig also requires side components, including a power supply, a CPU, LAN components, as well as a physical crate for holding and ventilating as many GPUs as desired. Experts at the EthereumMiningBot also recommend a smart power plug, to track electricity usage.

Essentially, an Ethereum mining rig would resemble an entire computer, a dedicated machine to avoid overloading consumer electronics. A basic Intel i3 CPU is recommended, as well as just basic 4GB RAM and a solid-state drive. Assembling the actual rig can be easier with custom-designed racks or cases, allowing the connection of six GPUs (or 540 MH/s potential). To connect the GPUs, a motherboard with six slots and possibly an additional power button to make switching on technically easier also go into the building of an Ethereum mining rig. For more than three GPUs, a set of connectors may be needed to place the GPUs conveniently and connect them to the motherboard.

An SSD memory completes the machine, with the potential to add a hardware wallet, or another basic tool to operate mining pools and receive ETH into a wallet.

The power connector will be extremely important for an efficient rig, and the recommendation is to use a model with platinum connectors, to avoid losses. The 1.2 kW Corsair CP-9020140-UK HX1200 allows for maximum power efficiency, to which a smart outlet may be added for tracking.

Assembling the computer components may pose difficulties, but an instructional video may help with the task.

ETHEREUM MINING CONTINUES TO GROW

Mining ETH at home is also a matter of achieving sufficient hashing power and joining the right pool to get a part of the daily rewards. The Ethereum network currently rewards 2 ETH per block each 15 seconds, down from as high as 5 ETH per block in previous reward periods. After the latest hard fork, only 2 ETH will be awarded, leading up to the intentional switch to ETH 2.0, which will rely on staking.

But because the Ethereum network has been so slow in introducing staking, mining is still growing. In the past month, mining expanded again above 180 TH/s. At current competition levels and difficulty, ETH mining is once again favorable.

Until January 2020, ETH difficulty increased and made some miners give up. After a small emergency hard fork, miners were once again invited to join in, showing a clear pickup in mining activity in the past few weeks. The advantage of a home-based rig is that it is possible to mine while the process shows good profits, disabling the rig in cases of increased difficulty.

MINING 1 ETH MAY ALSO COST 1 ETH

Building a mining rig for Ethereum may be comparable to buying an Antminer S17 ASIC price-wise. With a price tag of close to $2,000 for a two-GPU setup, mining ETH is also an expensive bid. During times of scarcity, and depending on the supplier, GPU may be scarce or more expensive than expected. Still, it is possible to spend $500 on a GPU with high Ethash performance.

With such a setup, producing 180 MH/s, the expected payout would be 4.21 ETH per year. This cost is close to the mining of Bitcoin (BTC), where there is a very thin breakeven. It would, once again, cost 4.21 ETH to mine 4.21 ETH.

There is currently one advantage to at-home mining in comparison to cloud mining. A Genesis contract will require about $1,500 to mine at 75 MH/s for a year. Having an at-home setup at 180 or even 200 MH/s is not much more expensive, and will have a longer lifetime. Downtime is also a decision that does not depend on Genesis mining, but on the rig’s owner.

Currently, Ethermine and f2Pool mine about 47% of all ETH blocks. Smaller pools manage to gather around 2 to about 10% of the daily reward, but the final daily gain will only be seen in hindsight. Joining a pool is necessary, as solo mining at this stage is impossible and the chances of discovering a block are astronomical. But a pool like Ethermine has a 24% chance of discovering a block and sharing the reward.

As of February 2020, ETH reached $266.32, still up more than 100% since the lows last December. Mining ETH profitably is still a dynamic bet, depending on whether the rally continues, and on mining competitors adding hashing power.

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