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New Plan to Build the Hardware for Ethereum 2.0

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The Ethereum Foundation is funding efforts to make specializing mining hardware in partnership with blockchain data storage network Filecoin.

Announced Thursday at Devcon, the yearly gathering of developers in Prague, Ethereum Foundation researcher Justin Drake unveiled preliminary layouts for application-specific integrated circuits, or ASICs, which will support an upcoming ethereum technology called the”beacon series”

In essence, the beacon series is a random number generator, and it’s predicted to form a part of the next significant iteration of the ethereum network — ethereum 2.0 — below an alternative, proof-of-stake consensus protocol (compared to this proof-of-work approach utilized today).

While the expression”ASIC” in the cryptocurrency area is more commonly linked to the technology employed to mining, the proposed ethereum 2.0 hardware is not engaging in the exact same, computationally-intensive process.

Rather, these ASIC apparatus will engage in a comparatively less expensive operation known as the Verifiable Delay Function. This will help to shuffle the validators that are intended to replace miners from ethereum’s proof-of-stake system. The idea is that the hardware will prevent any 1 person or organization from coalescing sufficient power to overtake system operations.

All told, the project is estimated to cost between $20 million and $30 million, according to Drake. That includes $15 million to $25 million to research and development, as well as $5 million to build an estimated 5,000 machines.

What’s more, the Ethereum Foundation and Filecoin — which increased more than $250 million through an initial coin offering (ICO) last year — will probably be splitting costs for project research and development fifty-fifty. Their general commitments could be decreased, as Drake left the door open to other blockchain projects contributing capital.

Looking at the work forward, Drake struck a positive tone — especially the prospect of designing and executing the strategy within an open-source fashion.

“Open-source ASICs haven’t been done before so it’s all very exciting for me,” Drake remarked.

Source: Bitcoin Market Insider