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“Make Bitcoin Decentralized Again”. Yes that is the tagline of the latest Bitcoin Fork called “Bitcoin Gold” which came into existence today i.e. 25th Oct 2017. It is to be noted that the previous Bitcoin fork, Bitcoin Cash, had taken place earlier this year in Aug 2017.
Off late, Bitcoin Gold has managed to remain the talk of the town and for a variety of reasons. The cryptocurrency community has split into two facets, one being the supporter of BTG (short code of Bitcoin Gold) and the other that stands against it. No matter what ones stance for BTG has been, but no one can deny the fact that Bitcoin Gold has played a mammoth part in driving the Bitcoin prices go pass $6000.
Purpose of BTG:
The team behind BTG had a vision, a vision to make Bitcoin decentralize again. In their opinion, Satoshi Nakamoto’s original vision of “one CPU one vote” is being curbed by a handful and deep pocketed mining equipment manufactures and large scale Bitcoin miners. The current Bitcoin system is tilted towards these whales of the network, so much so, that in some of them have engaged in abusive practices against small scale miners and the Bitcoin network as a whole.
BTG says that BTC’s current PoW algorithm, SHA256, (a memory demanding hashing algorithm that is tough and expensive to implement as an ASIC.) is the reason behind the supremacy of a few large players on the Bitcoin network. Whereas the new PoW algorithm i.e. ‘Equihash’, which BTG has adopted will ensure that the specialized SHA256 mining equipment—used for mining Bitcoin—will become obsolete for mining BTG. In this way BTG will provide a plane field to a countless individual miners, around the world, who would be able to participate in the mining operations of BTG by using equipment (which are relatively inexpensive) that are manufactured by a lot of mainstream manufacturers.
In BTG’s opinion, this more democratic and decentralized platform is much closer to what Satoshi Nakamoto had envisioned.
Bitcoin Gold’s official website lists the below 4 as their distinguishing features, from the rest:
BTG has come up with a new proof of work algorithm, Equihash, which renders those hardware obsolete that are manufactured specifically for mining Bitcoin. This way BTG’s platform presents an equal opportunity to all those individual miners who otherwise would not have had a chance to stand against the whales of the Bitcoin mining community.
When a new cryptocurrency is generated from the genesis block, a substantial amount gets retained by the core development team of the project. Even if the aforesaid doesn’t happen for a specific coin, there are good chances that while distributing the coins to the masses, during Initial Coins Offering, the majority of supply goes into the kitty of a few whales alone. This mode of coins distribution gives an undue advantage and stronghold on the system to a select few individuals. These whales can manipulate the prices of these coins at will, with the firepower they possess upon the system.
As per BTG, their digital asset has been distributed with complete fairness, where everyone holding BTC has been provided with the exact same amount of BTG as well.
Bitcoin Gold has implemented a full replay protection protocol, which ensures safety of the Bitcoin ecosystem that prevents user’s coins from getting spent accidentally.
Bitcoin Gold is an open source project with an ever increasing developer community from across the globe.
As per this website, the Bitcoin Gold’s founder Mr. Jack Liao is a businessman and the founder of a mining firm called “Lightening ASIC”, based out in Hong Kong.
Although, the identity of the lead developer of the project has not been revealed on their official website, where a code name of ‘h4x3rotab’ has been put up. Also to note is that, there is no picture provided for the lead developer.
The Bitcoin Gold is being supported by some of the well-known names in the cryptocurrency exchange business. Some of them are listed out below (not exhaustive):
1- HitBTC Exchange
2- Yobit Exchange
3- gold pool
4- BitStar Exchange etc.
As per the Bitcoin Gold’s roadmap, the below are planned to be implemented in the future.
1- Core protocol
2- Lightning network
3- Bech32 addresses
5- Cross-chain atomic swaps
6- Decentralized exchange
Acceptance Indication and Price:
Bitcoin Gold got listed on the cryptocurrency exchanges on 23rd Oct 2017, with the listing price of circa $479. Almost immediately the sell wall got build around BTG and its prices started to slump. Bitcoin Gold saw its steepest fall today, on its first day of existence, when its value shrunk by close to 62%. At the time of writing this post the price of BTG is lurking at around $144.
If price fluctuation is an indicator, then we can say that Bitcoin Gold hasn’t got the kind of reception its team would have hoped for. Since investors do not see real growth potential in the project, hence they are taking the initial gains and exiting from BTG ecosystem.