Archive for the ‘Crypto Coins’ Category

etherchain-ethereum-block-explorer

Blockchain explorers are a very useful tools for any crypto currency as the allow you to follow transactions and diagnose any possible problems when you are sending some coins or should be receiving them. You can also keep track of blocks that have been solved so far and other useful statistical information such as the accounts with the most coins in them and so on. With Ethereum things have been very active since the launch of the Frontier release at the end of last month and the network transactions actually starting to work a few days later. We already have a couple of useful Ethereum blockchain explorers that might be handy for anyone mining Ether (ETH) or willing to do so in the future, or if just interested on how things are progressing with the Ethereum network. Below is a list of Ethereum blockchain explorers that you might want to try out and see which one works best for you and has all of the information that you may need from such a service:

Etherchain
Etherscan
Etherapps
Ethercamp

We are using most of the time the Etherchain blockchain explorer, however the others do have some interesting features as well that might be useful at times, so we do recommend checking them all as we’ll probably see more similar services becoming available as well.

pooleum-new-ethereum-mining-pool

Since Ethpool, the only Ethereum pool up until now, stopped accepting new miners everyone else that wanted to mine for Ether (ETH) had to go solo mining. The good thing is that the community has reacted to this and started working on solutions to this problem with a Bounty being offered for an open-source Ethereum mining pool and releasing a new mining pool even though it is still in pre-alpha phase and there could be a whole lot of issues with it. The new mining pool for Ethereum is called Pooleum and it functions in a very similar way to Ethpool, essentially offering an alternative, though it is not yet so nice looking or with the full functionality. As already mentioned it is in pre-alpha stage and needs some work, but you can try mining with a single GPU if you have more than one at the new pool and reporting any issues you may find, so that we can get a good working alternative to Ethpool in no time. You can use our Quick Guide on How to Mine Ethereum on Windows to get started with the new pool, just replace the pool information, the rest is the same.

Update: We would advice to avoid this pool as apparently it has been left nonfunctional refusing connections for over 24 hours already!

There is just a bit over a week before the first halving of the block reward of Litecoin (LTC) happens. In less than 5000 blocks or sometime on Tuesday, August 25th the block reward for LTC will go down from the current amount of 50 to 25 coins. This is the first block reward halving for Litecoin as the coin in planned to halve the reward every 840000 blocks, so it will not be the last one. If you are a miner you might be worried about the price and profitability of Litecoin (LTC) after the block reward halving occurs, though the Litecoin Association feels “it is critical to mention that the price of Litecoin (while exciting) is not paramount to the goal of what we are trying to achieve as a cryptocurrency”. They have even produced an educational video on it, you can watch the clip embedded in this article. If you are a miner that has invested in hardware and still needs to pay back for the hardware before starting to make profit, then an event such as the halving of the block reward cannot be overlooked. If the price of LTC remains at its current level when the halving occurs it will mean that you will be making half of what you are currently earning mining for Litecoin. This could mean that continuing to mine may not be profitable anymore when you add in the price of the electricity you need to pay for example. As a result of this some miners may stop mining and thus the difficulty will start to go down, or the price could go up and thing may balance out again in a couple of days after the halving occurs.

There is no way to actually predict what will happen, but we know that things will balance and the mining and usage of Litecoin will continue after the halving just as it has happened with Bitcoin already. There is still a concern about the future of Litecoin however and it is related to the mining process, as things have moved past GPU mining for LTC and we’ve moved to the ASIC mining period last year things were still progressing well. But we have not seen new ASIC mining hardware and the first generation of miners are already getting obsolete, so fewer miners are still mining LTC and not much new miners are starting to mine LTC (there are other Scrypt coins also). So the block reward halving is actually not a problem for the future of LTC, it is something that should actually help in resolving the issue with mining in one way or another. However as mining becomes more and more unprofitable for normal people mining LTC and only large mining farms remain things may not end up well for the crypto currency in the future if the situation with the lack of new mining hardware remains the same. This is already happening with Bitcoin and if Litecoin follows in its footsteps things may not end up so well with other new alternatives popping up such as Ethereum that can be mined by a regular users with a GPU.


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