Ethereum developers held the next meeting, with the ProgPow algorithm as the main theme. The ProgPoW code was released in 2018 as a replacement for the existing Ethash mine algorithm. It was to serve as protection against the emerging trend of centralizing mining around companies and miners using ASIC.
The discussion initially focused on the technical viability of ProgPow, in particular the developers noted two vulnerabilities found by independent auditors and researchers. However, they came to the conclusion that they are easy to repair and then only used in specialized scenarios.
Some developers suggested removing all errors from the algorithm and changing them under a different name. But this idea did not satisfy the support, and the other side of the developers believes that ProgPow must be completely abandoned. Many fear that a more powerful ASIC will replace the current E3, creating a work cycle that iPhone users are familiar with – planned obsolescence. Opponents of ProgPow claim that whenever Bitmain produces a new ASIC, the network encounters problems and this undermines its security. This fear becomes even more relevant in view of the growing size of the Ethereum network.
Vitalik Buterin, the founder of Ethereum, also attended the meeting, but ProgPow remained silent during the discussions. James Hancock, coordinator of the hard fork of Ethereum, concluded that without absolute support the proposal cannot be implemented, even though it offers clear benefits for the network. Therefore, until ProgPoW is included in the hard fork diagram.
Participants also discussed the potential impact of the recent drop in the Ethereum hashere, as 4U RAM and Bitmain Em miner minerals can no longer handle Ethereum mining, even which algorithm is active. Here the developers could not reach a consensus and no solution has yet been found.