On Friday, Square CEO Jack Dorsey speculated that his company may start mining bitcoins.
After Dorsey tweeted, the price of bitcoin rose above $62,000 as the world’s most popular cryptocurrency grew toward its all-time high. The company is considering a “bitcoin mining system based on custom silicon and open source for individual and business users around the globe.”
The goal Dorsey sets for himself is to make crypto mining – the process of creating bitcoins through solving increasingly complex problems computationally – more accessible, just as Square’s original vision was to make credit card payments easier for small businesses and independent proprietors. It is currently impossible to use a simple power supply to practice bitcoin mining. The Bitcoin industry is dominated by large-scale players that can purchase thousands of ASICs, the type of specialty gear used to manufacture new coins.
It is expected that the Square hardware team, led by Jesse Dorogusker, will begin investigating the technology to carry out the project, per Dorsey.
In an announcement earlier this week, Square Hardware CEO Bodo Dorogusker wrote: “We will be incubating the bitcoin mining system project inside Square and will begin with engineering, design, and prototyping of more efficient silicon, hashing algorithms, and power architectures.”
Since silicon is at the core of this new initiative, Dorogusker said Afshin Rezayee will lead the project since he is an architect and a leader of Square’s Toronto silicon team since 2015.
Making a strong core in silicon is only the first step. Creating the value we envision demands a whole stack of components – silicon, hardware, software, manufacturing, and innovative distribution methods that can support a global network.” said Dorogusker.
Having been the CEO of Twitter as well as Square, Dorsey explained the reasoning behind the move of Square to join a crowded field.
In a tweet, Dorsey wrote that mining should be more decentralized. Bitcoin’s network becomes more resilient the more decentralized it is.”
As Dorsey shared in August, he was using bitcoin mining services provider Compass to mint his own bitcoins. Square CEO Ben Cohen also wrote a series of tweets late Friday advocating this kind of equitable access to mining.
Mines remain inaccessible to all, according to Dorsey. Putting a power source on should be no harder than mining bitcoins. The complexity of running a miner on your own isn’t motivating enough to motivate individuals.”
The Square CEO wrote that too much concentration of power is detrimental to vertical integration and silicon design, both of which are too central.
As well as bitcoin and carbon footprints, Square’s CEO discussed energy as well.
Achieving clean and efficient energy use will enhance the economic impact, scalability, and impact of bitcoin. Therefore, silicon, software, and integration will need to be innovated. What are the opportunities here?” concluded Dorsey.
Until now, China had been the world’s top bitcoin mining destination. Now, with Square’s announcement, the U.S. has become the world’s top destination for bitcoin miners. Renewable energy is also abundant in the U.S.
Hydropower mining farms abound in Washington state. As of 2011, New York was the state that produced the most hydroelectric power east of the Rocky Mountains, and its nuclear power plants counted toward its 100% carbon-free electricity goal. According to the Texas Energy Study, 20% of Texas’ power is generated by wind energy in 2019. Solar and wind power generation continue to grow rapidly in Texas.
Texas also offers free power spot pricing and its politicians are crypto-friendly. It also has a deregulated power grid. Mine owners who desire cheap energy and a friendly welcome are in luck.
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The geological, political, and judicial stability of the region is crucial to relocating mining operations from China. Core Scientific co-founder Darin Feinstein recommends protecting your assets while relocating them as well.