Gridcoin - State of the Union and Network Updates
There has been a lot of very exciting activity on the Gridcoin circuit recently, and I would like to take the time to introduce, summarise and discuss the key development and news items. This is especially relevant in the past month, as with the altcoin market in free-fall it is important to ensure you understand the coins you are invested in (or plan to buy into). This is because the price of a coin in the long run will be heavily determined by its underlying value proposition, quality of the dev team, and long term roadmap, rather than speculative booms. I hope that this article will help you establish a better view of the Gridcoin network as it is advancing today, and keep you up-to-date with developments on the circuit if you are already involved.Vote Opened to Pay Developers
As it stands, Gridcoin is actively developed by volunteer developers who donate their time to work on the project. Earlier this week, the original developer of Gridcoin, Rob, proposed a vote that will see all developers compensated at the rate of USD$30/h going forward. Funds are to be distributed from the central Foundation Wallet, which currently holds around 32 million GRC.
If passed, the first paid development period will run from August 1 this year to January 31 2018, and allow only hours with tangible results to be billed. This will result in higher quality work and more time committed from the dev team, as well as attract talent from outside the current GRC community to work on the platform. In effect, anyone will be able to make Gridcoin development a full time job - provided they can meaningfully contribute continuously.
In the immediate future we will see further client improvements, and ongoing work on superblock stability and whitelisted project inclusion. Watch this space!Branding Discussion
A considerable amount of activity has taken place discussing and mocking up the branding side of the GRC network in the hope of bringing the GRC logo in line with many of the other cryptocurrencies. While the current logo defines Gridcoin well at full resolution, the scaled down icon used on exchanges makes it hard to identify GRC. Taking charge of the concept discussion and generation, @joshoeah has provided some previews for this update. A post will likely follow from him in the next few days to ask for further community input. In the interim, he has provided some images of concepts currently on the table and invites feedback. If you would like to contribute to this discussion, please join the Gridcoin Slack Branding Channel.Stylised concept artwork of one of the logo designs currently being floated. Background colour is defaulted to green for the logo thumbnail. How the proposed design fits in with the thumbnails of other major coins Comparison of the current Gridcoin logo vs the introduced concept. It is vastly more recognisable than the grey blob the high resolution current logo is reduced to. Team Requirement Removal
With the return to function of the Gridcoin network polls we are expecting to see a decison made in the foreseeable future on whether or not the BOINC team requirement to mine GRC will be removed. Several possible technical solutions have been floated by the development team, but nothing can proceed unless the community finds in favour of such a change.
Opening up the option to mine GRC while remaining with their current team will increase the number of people eligible for GRC reward 100-fold instantly, as 99% of crunchers running BOINC are not eligible for reward at this time. We see this greatly increasing the value of the coin as the mining difficulty will rise sharply, which should also result in even further compute power being added to the BOINC grid.The Millionth Block is Inbound
The Gridcoin blockchain is rapidly approaching its millionth block, and discussions on how to celebrate it have been ongoing on Github, Reddit and Slack. In addition to classic celebrations, there is ongoing design happening to mint commemorative coins as well as a plethora of other suggestions. Get involved if you have any ideas to add or would like to contribute to any of the ideas the community has already fielded!
Following are height maps of some of the coin designs. If you have any ideas or suggestions, you can field them here or in the Slack Branding Channel. I have a couple of 3D renders currently running of coin models for community review later in the week.On the Plummeting Market
Despite the plummeting market value of practically every coin in the cryptosphere, remember that the ultimate value of each coin or token is determined by the value is provides society or the holder. Gridcoin is posed well for when the rebound occurs, having a solid development plan and roadmap in place, and adding significant talent to the development community over the last few months.
To add to this, GRC is one of the few coins (alongside the Graphene projects such as STEEM and BTS) that does not rely on POW in the classical sense that most other coins do. The future of blockchain tech is in trusting the mining to elected delegates, such as the Graphene projects do, or using the compute power of network machines to benefit society, as Gridcoin does. The crypto age of the endless POW hashing arms race is going to come to an end, and coins like these are the ones that will emerge on the other side.What Can The Average GRC User Do?
If you are not interested in participating actively in development, there are still many ways to get involved in the community that you should take advantage of to help shape the network and maintain your mint rate. In order of importance:At the time of writing there are 8 active polls available for you to vote on. The key polls center around paid developer work, and the addition and removal of specific projects from the Gridcoin Whitelist, which affects what projects are eligible for reward. These decisions affect everyone, so make your voice heard! Your voting power is a function of both your GRC balance and your mining magnitude. Upgrade to the latest wallet client, version v220.127.116.11. This includes a variety of improvements and bug fixes. If you are on Windows, the upgrade can be started from within the wallet client under Upgrade QT Client --> Upgrade Client. Review the project whitelist and modify your project contributions to suit. This is also a good time to review which projects are receiving the most compute from Team Gridcoin, and redirect your computing power to even out the spread.
To get further involved, or to read up and keep on top of current developments, check out the following communication and information channels serving the Gridcoin network:Gridcoin Developer Slack - General channels for troubleshooting, as well as developer and branding discussions. Gridcoin IRC - Join the linked channel, then register with NickServ using the instructions at the top of the page so you can join #Gridcoin. This is required to stop someone else stealing your nickname and the associated GRC. Gridcoin Steemit - You are here already! =) Gridcoin Homepage - The actively maintained and developed homepage of GRC globally. Gridcoin Subreddit - Anything GRC related. The developers read the comments posted here, and will in all likelihood directly address any questions you pose within the day. Gridcoin Forum and Main Thread - The ongoing megathread where you are most likely to find the original GRC developer Rob weighing in. Gridcoin Twitter - Keep up to date with GRC news.
Image credit, in order of appearance: State of the Union, me-shell GRC Logo Concepts, joshoeah Commemorative Coins, GRC Branding