What is Bitcoin Gold?
Bitcoin Gold is a fork of the Bitcoin blockchain. At block 491407, Bitcoin Gold miners will begin creating blocks with a new proof-of-work algorithm, and this will cause a bifurcation of the Bitcoin blockchain. The original Bitcoin blockchain will continue on unaltered, but a new branch of the blockchain will split off from the original chain. The new branch is a distinct blockchain with the same transaction history as Bitcoin up until the fork, but then diverges from it. As a result of this process, a new cryptocurrency is born.
What is the purpose of Bitcoin Gold?
The purpose of Bitcoin Gold is to make Bitcoin mining decentralized again. Satoshi Nakamoto’s idealistic vision of “one CPU one vote” has been superseded by a reality where the manufacture and distribution of mining equipment has become dominated by a very small number of entities, some of which have engaged in abusive practices against individual miners and the Bitcoin network as a whole. By changing Bitcoin’s proof-of-work algorithm from SHA256 to Equihash, all of the specialized SHA256 mining equipment will be obsolete for mining the Bitcoin Gold blockchain. Thus, Bitcoin Gold will provide an opportunity for countless new people around the world to participate in the mining process with widely-available consumer hardware that is manufactured and distributed by reputable mainstream corporations. A more decentralized, democratic mining infrastructure is more resilient and more in line with Satoshi’s original vision.
Who controls the Bitcoin network?
Nobody owns the Bitcoin network much like no one owns the technology behind email. Bitcoin is controlled by all Bitcoin users around the world. While developers are improving the software, they can’t force a change in the Bitcoin protocol because all users are free to choose what software and version they use. In order to stay compatible with each other, all users need to use software complying with the same rules. Bitcoin can only work correctly with a complete consensus among all users. Therefore, all users and developers have a strong incentive to protect this consensus.
If I have BTC in long-term cold storage, where are my BTG?
If you have BTC in a paper wallet, hardware wallet, multi-signature address, or any other form of secure private key storage, you will be able to claim your corresponding BTG at any time in the future. There is no expiration date for claiming your free BTG. If you have BTC in cold storage that you did not plan to touch for many years, do not change your plans because of this fork. Your BTG will still be there decades from now.
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