Zooko talking about PoS. PoS vs PoW Discussion


It seems days of mining Zcash with ASIC might be numbered, @zooko just talked about switching to PoS, read it on his twitter bellow.

I personally am for anything that pulls Zcash away from greedy ASIC manufacturers, but as few Chinese pools now have over 51%, is it dangerous to talk public about switch, as they might retaliate and do a 51% attack. What do you guys think ?

Let’s talk about ASIC mining
Let’s talk about ASIC mining

ProgPOW is my preference for now. Zcash shouldn’t move to PoS as long as the company has such a large stash of ZEC. It should be delayed until well after the Founder’s Reward ends. The key to security is to have a high enough price to support enough miners with decentralized GPU’s to make the network secure. A high enough price so that rented GPU hashpower is not sufficient to attack the coin.

But shouldn’t Zcash first get BOLT and core implemented? I think those should come first with a switch to ProgPOW and then a switch to PoS might be in order once the network is mature.


100% confirmed.

How about the thousands that have invested in ASIC?


i didn’t know zooko was sunny king, weird


I will Ebay mine before it happens. It would be a year at least before it would be possible to do it.


I couldn’t care less for those people. They forced GPU miners out of the network.


I’am all for POS in the mid/long run. POW mining by now is way to flawed, no matter if GPU or Asic, just let’s prepare for POS and use all resources for a perfect and fair POS system.


So you think if zcash was only minable by GPU you’d still be making a profit?

Only because people mine with ASIC doesn’t mean they support them. Many of us didn’t have an alternative and spitting on our actions is just disrespectful.



PoS is basically untested (though other small projects may have run it for a little while now), and there’s really nobody that could say it will work for ethereum 100%
but assuming it does work (securely) then what does it mean beyond that? I.e. SoV, MoE what is Zcash really used for and which consensus protocol (while being secure) best fulfills that, the economic and sociological effects of a portrayed function vs actually utilization
Zcash and Ethereum are very different ecosystems too, both could be considered stores of value but does incentivizing storing into a non-liquid time lock for a small gain (a bank) affect its overall usability? I.e. zcash is great currency but we buy it primarily for cold storage now, also theres a limited amount so it makes sense to freeze it in stake

I really dont know either way


i’m not a huge fan of PoS, but PPC’s PoS scheme has been deployed in the wild since 2012/2013.

edit: sunny king dropped PPC’s white paper august 2012


I mean “untested” by a non-chíte coin (im not a fan either)


Which would be better, a pure PoS system or a PoW Masternode/Observer node system?

What are the chances of a 51% attack?

why not PoS with Observer?


With PoS there is no way 51% attack so PoS /Observers seems like it would be redundant.

Also: https://www.coindesk.com/one-musicians-creative-solution-to-drive-asics-off-monero/


Why not?


Well technically you could but it’s a bad idea.

I’ll let Vitailk explain:

Theoretically, a majority collusion of validators may take over a proof of stake chain, and start acting maliciously. However, (i) through clever protocol design, their ability to earn extra profits through such manipulation can be limited as much as possible, and more importantly (ii) if they try to prevent new validators from joining, or execute 51% attacks, then the community can simply coordinate a hard fork and delete the offending validators’ deposits.


@zooko oS… Who do you think has the money to stake up front after you buy the equipment especially non-ASIC equipment? i.e. “greedy ASIC manufactures…” Not little guys like me who are tying to make a mark for themselves. So before you do something stupid, realize that I stopped mining Ethereum for a reason and I won’t go back. I spent over $7800 for two GPU miners, had over a $400 electric bill and only made about $150 ±10% for that month. The day I received my ASIC miners is the day I took my GPU miners mining ETH offline while they where only less then 24hrs from paying out the .2 ETH. And the money is still sitting there. I won’t go back and that should tell you something… I’ll be damed if im gonna pay out $7800 for two GPU miners then have to stake money upfront in order for me to mine “x amount…” I don’t have the money nor would I want to no matter how much I believed in your coins project. Nor would I want you to merge with Ethereum.

“With PoS the only people who have the money to stake upfront are the BIG TIME INVESTORS…”

“Not us little guys.”


If ZCash is interested about POS or zooko himself only I invite you to the POS Alliance https://posalliance.org/ - to discuss about the advantages & disadvantages of POS.

The Proof of Stake Alliance is a group of developers, researchers, advocates, projects and businesses that have come together to improve and promote the use of Proof of Stake as a consensus mechanism.



I agree that we need a long-term solution so that we’re not changing the algorithm every few years. The options are to either stick with ASICs until ProgPOW research is done, or just prepare for a POS system that increases coin distribution fairness.

By increasing fairness I’m referring to eliminating the electrical rate discrepancy between larger and smaller miners and eliminating manufacturer pre-mining (Innosilicon). Another advantage of POS is removing the fossil fuel argument against POW coins in general.

If we were on a POS system a year or two from now I would be happy. It’s not perfect conceptually, but its benefits outweigh the negatives of POW.

There are other things to think about: what if POW becomes outlawed by governments after the next bull run. Electrical companies could (and already have) started making policies that specifically target cryptocurrency mining. ISPs could start blocking ports (8333, 8233, 8232), and unfortunately, at least in the US, there is a big ISP monopoly. There are other threats to POW as well.

As the price goes higher leading to more people being involved it will inevitably become harder to make some of these changes.


What about the Founder’s Reward and the company and investors having the largest stake? I don’t think that would go over too well. It appears to be a conflict of interest. It would be less so if they waited until the Founder’s Reward expired.

That is two years from now so a ProgPOW solution should work until then. Bitmain would have to design GPU’s to be able to mine. A memory-hard ProgPOW with high memory requirements (4GB+) would discourage them from even trying. They might be able to survive with lower margins, but with more PoS talk it would be a heavily risky investment for them to make.