Today, Jack Dorsey announced the launch of the Ocean initiative for Bitcoin mining.
Jack Dorsey is the famous co-founder and former CEO of Twitter, before it was acquired by Elon Musk.
For years now, Dorsey has been primarily involved in Bitcoin, as well as his financial company Block (formerly Square).
Jack Dorsey: Ocean’s Bitcoin mining
The Ocean initiative, however, is not the classic mining pool.
This is actually a decentralized mining pool for Bitcoin.
Mining pools are platforms where many miners can pool their computing power together in order to share any potential earnings in proportion to the computing power they contribute to the pool.
The problem is that generally these pools are actually centralized, meaning they are managed by a single entity that in theory could also impose its own will on the pool as a whole.
In order to avoid this, the Ocean initiative was born, which aims to decentralize the pools.
Ocean is therefore a decentralized mining pool, in which there is no single entity that can make arbitrary decisions and effectively impose them on all participants.
The problem of decentralization
Decentralization is not only the best feature of Bitcoin, in addition to its immutable, predictable, and deflationary monetary policy. It is also, in fact, a critical issue.
In other words, if Bitcoin were to ever lose decentralization, it would be a dead project.
Currently, there are only five major miners in the world, one of which is not a pool (Binance).
In the past, there have been cases where there were only two pools that together possessed more than 50% of the hashrate, and this endangered the real decentralization of Bitcoin.
Currently, a similar situation is also occurring, with the two main pools (the Chinese AntPool and the American Foundry) together accounting for about 55% of the hashrate.
In theory, if these two pools were to agree and had the support of all the miners that make them up, they could even launch a 51% attack on Bitcoin.
In reality, nothing like this has ever happened because getting all the miners in a pool to attack Bitcoin is practically impossible.
To solve the problem at its root, there is however a solution: make the pools decentralized.
Jack Dorsey and Ocean’s solution: decentralized Bitcoin mining
So, what Ocean does is make the Bitcoin protocol even more resilient.
Being a decentralized pool, it is not possible for anyone to manipulate it in order to use it to attack Bitcoin.
To be honest, until now it has always been extremely difficult to manage a mining pool in a truly decentralized way, so it’s no wonder that all the major pools are still centralized.
But finally there is a solution, developed by the Dorsey team and released in the form of a truly decentralized pool.
Ocean is not only a decentralized platform, which makes it transparent, verifiable, controllable, and with nothing to hide. It is also non-custodial, so that the miners who participate in it directly receive any BTC earned in real time from the platform.
In addition, it is also permissionless, meaning that anyone can participate without any obstacles or limitations.
Ocean is based on the Eligius pool, active since 2011. In twelve years, Eligius has managed to mine a staggering 11,631 blocks, earning a total of 348,326 BTC.
It is also easy to use, because you just need to enter mine.ocean.xyz:3334 in the ASIC interface and add the Bitcoin address to receive any earnings.
At this moment, the entire Ocean pool has a total hashrate of 140 PH/s.
Note that a month ago they were less than 240 TH/s (which is 0.24 PH/s), and just the day before yesterday they were only 8.8 PH/s.
So after Jack Dorsey’s official launch, it has really grown a lot, although it is not yet able to compete with the other major mining pools.
Currently, the average global hashrate is about 490 EH/s, which is 490,000 PH/s. Therefore, Ocean has less than 0.03% of the world’s hashrate.
For example, the two largest pools, AntPool and Foundry, have 140 EH/s and 132 EH/s respectively. In other words, Ocean has one thousandth of the computing power of AntPool.
However, this does not exclude the possibility of undermining some blocks. One is undermined approximately every 10 minutes, which is about 144 per day. Ocean should therefore theoretically be able to undermine an average of about 1.3 per month.
Inside there is a single miner with 22% of the total hashrate, and in total at the moment there are 15 miners.
In other words, its growth potential is still significantly high, especially considering that it is probably the most transparent and secure pool in the world for miners.