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In 2009, it was 50. In 2013, it was 25, in the time of writing it's 12.5, and sometime in the middle of 2020 it will halve to 6.25. .

At this speed of halving, the total number of bitcoin in circulation will approach a limit of 21 million, making the currency more scarce and valuable over time but also more expensive for miners to make.

Here's the catch. In order to get bitcoin miners to actually earn bitcoin from verifying transactions, two things have to happen. First, they need to confirm 1 megabyte (MB) worth of transactions, which can theoretically be as little as 1 transaction but are more often several thousand, depending on how much information each transaction stores.

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Second, in order to put in a block of transactions to the blockchain, miners should fix a complex computational math problem, also referred to as a"proof of labour " What they are actually doing is trying to come up with a 64-digit hexadecimal number, called a"hash," that's less than or equivalent to the hash.

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In other words, it is a gamble. .

The difficulty level of the most recent block at the time of writing is all about 7,184,404,942,701. In other words, the chance of a pc producing a hash below the target is just 1 in 7,184,404,942,701 less than 1 in seven trillion. That level is corrected every 2016 blocks, or roughly every two weeks, with the goal of keeping rates of mining constant.

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The reverse is also correct. If computational power is taken off of the network, the difficulty adjusts downward to earn mining simpler. .

"Say I tell three friends I'm thinking about a number between 1 and 100, and I write that number on a sheet of paper and seal it in an envelope. My friends don't need to guess the specific number, they simply have to be the very first person to figure any number that's less than or equal to the number I'm thinking of.

"Let us say I'm thinking about the number 19. If Friend A guesses 21they lose because 21>19. If Friend B supposes 16 and Friend C guesses 12, then they've both technically came at viable answers, because 16<19 and 12<19. There is no'extra credit' for Friend B, even though B's answer was closer to the target answer of 19. .

"Now imagine that I pose the'guess what number I'm thinking of' question, however I am not asking just 3 friends, and I am not thinking of a number between 1 and 100. Rather, I'm asking millions of would-be miners and I am thinking about a 64-digit hexadecimal number. Now you see that it's going to be quite hard to guess the right answer." .

If 1 in seven trillion doesn't sound difficult enough as is, here's the catch to the catch. Not only do bitcoin miners have to think of the right hash, they also must be the first to do it.

Because bitcoin mining is essentially guesswork, arriving at the ideal answer before another miner has everything to do with how fast your computer can create hashes. Only a decade ago, bitcoin miners could be carried out competitively on normal desktops. Over time, however, miners recognized that graphics cards commonly utilized for video games tend to be more capable of mining than desktops and graphics processing units (GPU) came to dominate the match.

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These can run from \$500 into the tens of thousands. .

Nowadays, bitcoin mining is so competitive it can only be done profitably with all the latest up-to-date ASICs. When using desktop computers, GPUs, or older versions of ASICs, the cost of energy consumption actually exceeds the revenue generated. Even with the newest unit available, one pc is seldom enough to compete with what what miners call"mining pools" .

A mining pool is a group of miners who combine their computing ability and split the mined bitcoin between participants. A disproportionately high number of blocks are mined by pools rather than by individual miners. In July 2017, mining pools and companies represented roughly 80% to 90% of bitcoin computing power. .

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Between 1 in 7 trillion chances, scaling difficulty levels, and also the massive network of users verifying transactions, one block of transactions is confirmed roughly every 10 minutes. However, its important to keep in mind that 10 minutes is a goal, not a guideline.

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The bitcoin network can process about seven transactions per second, with transactions being logged in the blockchain each 10 minutes. As blog here the network of bitcoin Web Site users continues to grow, however, the number of transactions made in 10 minutes will eventually exceed the number of transactions which can be processed in 10 minutes.