While i think it’s a good thing to make future plans i personally think this one will absolutly fail. I can see the valid logic behind the thoughts but it lacks forseeing the future in my opinion.
Here some points that make me sure it will fail if the change is related in anyway going GPU POW again:
by October/Novemember 2019, mostly the time when ETH will introduce POS GPU mining will be no more giving any profitablity for any private personal miner that hasn’t access to cheapest electricity. The ETH POS change will free up so much gpu hashpower and shift this haspower logically to the other still profitable coins that i would call it even flooding what’s going to happen. ETH announced that the upgrade period changed from 6 to 8 months these days, means if Constantinople goes online in February 2019 there is a good change POS will coming 8 months later, thus October 2019.
Transaction Speed. ZEC with POW is still one of the slowest coins, just limited obviously due POW minig. Seriously, it’s a pain to send slow coins somewhere at the moment compared to really fast ones. Going POS too would fix this issue.
Transactions per second. Again a huge limitation due POW. Currently we are on average 17 transactions per second. Nowadays this is a joke to be honest. My personal view is that everything below 1000 in future won’t be of any interest when talking about mass adoption and real use cases. Damn, 17 transactions, lol, we are at the end of the list with this transaction per second number only beaten by Bitcoin and some others. Again, currently only POS (POS like) conensus would improve this as well, but not POW.
Geographical centralization. Every project staying with POW will suffer from low electricity cost region centralization. Just logical. The majority of the Asic coins by now are only mineable in such regions, same goes allready for a lot of GPU coins allready and ones ETH goes POS this will as well favour the huge GPU mining farms with access to cheap electricity and of course private miners that luckely life in such regions, hence why i call it geographical centralization. That’s just the logical future of POW in generally. For example just ask how many miners are left in Germany with at average 0.30 USD/kw/h electricity costs??? With some expectations in east europe and iceland whole europe has very high electricity costs. Again POS would be a better solution as it doesn’t require electricity costs to run. While the move away from Asic is a good one it wouldn’t fix this problem. This factor would be eleminated for sure with a given POS design.
Security: , staying on POW still has a security risk, being from mining pools or from mining facilities doesn’t matter at all. Again, once ETH hashpower gets released we don’t know how this huge shifting of hashpower would affect another POW gpu algo used by ZEC than. Eventually nicehash ability to rent hashpower would than be a real threat again having in mind that x times the hashpower of ZEC gets released on a free market due the ETH POS switch. Same for mining pools. These 51% issues don’t get fixed at all, maybe with a new algo they get improved somehow, but not fixed. Again POS would eleminate them both, the 51% attack and the miningpool issue, instantly. From a security point of view POS (POS like) design would fix these issues best.
Venezuelans as you mentioned, these guys in a poor country have access to the cheapest electricity worldwide. While i’am all for helping them i’am not sure that giving them the best POW mining access is fair at all having in mind that 99% of the world has way higher electricity costs than venezuela.
FIAT: Why the hell rely on something that needs to be paid with FIAT? No matter if Asic or GPU, POW mining hardware is paid in FIAT. Money and Capital that could be used for directly investing into ZEC instead of driving out money from Cryptospace into FIAT. I would agree to the “gamers” argument if POW would still be on a CPU, but unfortunatly it’s not, hence the view gamers doesn’t play a role at all when it comes to mining.
Millions and Billions of FIAT have been paid for hardware and other Millions and Billions are still being paid in FIAT for electricity. That’s money that could be used directly in giving projects, direct investments into projects. Currently we invest MORE into hardware companies, electricity companies and even pay taxes and VAT for all this. This is a devils circle with POW. We have to mine and sell (soon or late) the reward to reverse it to FIAT to pay for hardware and electricity and at the end even to pay taxes (again in FIAT) in case we still made a profit. The current POW mining state isn’t establishing crypto at all, it fixes us miners to FIAT. Instead of people bringing in capital with POW we force it out. Again currently only POS like design fix this issue because everybody invests directly in his coin not wasting anymore FIAT for hardware, electricity, facilities, working hours whatever!!! Actually i think this is the strongest argument in POS even not many seem to realize it.
Rich get richer: While controversal here compared to POS it’s for sure a given fact for POW mining. The big pockets have cheap access to electricity, get cheaper hardware, maintain them cheaper and and and. This with the mentioned bevor geographical centralization issue is as well a major fact that in the long run only the big mining facilities with access to cheap electricity, maybe cheap working hours, countries that subsideize crypto mining are in the best position. Of course in POS you have a similar issue with the big pockets able to buy the biggest stake but than again:
a.) there are at least some mechanisms available to reduce this gap like maximum stake, reduced rewards after given stake amounts, penalty for bigger stakes, random factors and and and. So at all there is whole spectre the POS design would allow this gap to be smaller while in POW there is nothing to prevent this.
b.) actually here is even a security factor involved, as the bigger stake has no interest in whatever bad intention as he is liable with his stake.
c.) Sell pressure with a POS design would be removed if someone doesn’t need to sell constantly for covering electricity and hardware. This alone would close the gap a lot between the richer and the rest. In POW mining the rich with cheap electricity mining farms mines a ZEC for example way cheaper than we private miners. With POS the price would be equal for both. In best case the rich has gets just a minor discount, compared to his current POW advantages just a minor issue at all, hence again a mechanism to close the gap with POS.
Mass adoption: Yes, everybody is talking about it, but how many really do something for it??? I’am well aware that every miner (Asic/GPU) will say that mining helps mass adoption, mostly because they want to make profit with the hardware they invested in. But, if we really think honestly about it, how mass adopted can it be to use specialised high end mining hardware? Whose relatives really want to deal daily with mining pools, stratums, setups, special command in mining software and investments in hardware? That’s not mass adoption. Mass adoption is something that easly could be setuped and used by really everybody without hadware and technical knowledge restrictions. Just readed yesterday about a new project where the wallet is intregrated in the browser and another one an email wallet. Here a huge advantage of POA for example, mining with your ioT devices, be it a TV, a fridge or whatever has ioT. Or of course POS, installing an easy design POS wallet on your laptop, old PC or even cell phone should be an easy task. Even your grandma should be able to to so compard to setting up the stratums on the linux software, lol.
Decentralization: Each of the points above as well includes a portion decentralization improvement compared to POW in favour of a POS design. But the main issue here is that i think that with POS a real fair voting on proposals could happen. For example every 10 ZEC have 1 vote through the POS system. If i remember right in the last proposal their have been 65 voters, but would this be compared to 10.000’s of voters? This would be an easy task to implent in my opinion with a POS design and POS wallet.
Actually this brings me to the next point, the wallet issue with ZEC, not directly related with the topic, but still. How many do you really think can use these current wallets? Damn, it’s even mega hard for me as a miner to use them and i prefer the exodus intregration of ZEC as it’s just a hit button solution which i favour more than the privacy issue. How about you guys work on a top notch easy to use windows wallet. From all wallets i have installed so far (over 150) the ZEC and PASCAL wallets are the worst i have encountered so far when it comes to easyness. Just my personal view on the wallet issue and maybe i missed something.
Back to mass adoption. Want mass adoption? Than use something easy that everybody is interested in, everybody can use and everbody can handle and of course, everybody can afford. A POS design would way improve this issue providing even access to further developement like cellphone staking, ioT staking and and and. With about zero interest worldwide on bank savings this would even attract even normal people if they see they could get let’s say 3% of interest for their ZEC holding if staked. Just a thought.
This said i think currently ZEC is the best privacy coin around with Monero of course. But my fear is that we lose ground when it comes to adoption, easyness, scalability, transaction speed, transactions per second, security, whatever. I even think that too much resources are wasted on things that do not really improve the issues that need to be improved.
In my opinion POW’s days are counted expect for Bitcoin which is anyway by most only used as a store of value and the counter exchange part to all other crypto currencies. This together makes me wonder why continue with POW with so huge limitations and flaws and not investing resources to go eventually with a POS design or something totally new and even better or a mix of a new POS/POA/dPOS/ and if some kind of POW is really needed add some notarize to Bitcoin or Kommodo or whatever.
Edit: I’am well aware this pro-POS post won’t get much likes as it opposes the biggest 2 mining groups in ZEC, the Asic miners (me too) and the gpu miners. Both groups have naturally other interests than supporting a POS design as profitability and ROI of their investments are of course a huge factor for them. However, these groups will realize that with POW they have to invest more and more to make less and less. Even by now it makes more sense to buy directly a given coin as a private personal miner than to mine it, what’s left in future…