- A panel of four major players in the ASIC space took the stage at Bitcoin 2022 to discuss the state of the application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC) market and future outlooks.
- The panel included Nishant Sharma, Johnny Yao, Mike Francis, Chris Manzano and Kristy-Leigh Minehan, all of whom have a plethora of experience in ASICs
- The conversation spanned innovation, consensus change, supply shocks, upcoming hardware and future outlooks.
Sharma moderated while Yao, Francis, Manzano and Minehan took the Mining Stage at Bitcoin 2022 to discuss the current state of application-specific integrated circuits (ASICs). These machines are colloquially referred to as "miners," or the equipment used to mine bitcoin, and have historically had a somewhat volatile market with price swings and supply constraints.
Sharma is a founder and partner of BlocksBridge Consulting which focuses on public relations and marketing advisory for blockchain companies, and previously served as the director of public relations for Bitmain, one of the world’s leading ASIC manufacturers.
Sharma started the conversation with an easy question, “What are the current ASICs available?”
After each of the panelists discussed the options available, the conversation went more toward supply shocks and technical upgrades for equipment in the space, specific to the idea that we have been stuck on 7 nanometer (nm) chips for quite some time.
"We are all waiting for the market to see it, and let it go,” Yao, vice president of global sales for Canaan Creative, said on launching 5 nm miners. But not everyone on stage agreed.
“We don’t think the focus should be on nanometers or chip size," said Manzano who works with Bitmain, a leading ASIC manufacturer.
Necessity breeds innovation,” said Francis, the chief executive officer of U.S.-based Distributed Ledger Inc, which provides mining infrastructure, cloud services and blockchain infrastructure for governments, enterprise corporations and private entities. He eluded to the future of innovative hardware which is hard to predict, and noted that not every company can afford data centers, which will lead to specific forms of innovation.
Closing out the conversation, Sharma asked the panel, then he turned specifically to Minehan to ask about her thoughts on what changing the proof-of-work consensus model for bitcoin looks like.
“Anyone who is suggesting to change bitcoin’s proof of work, simply does not understand how elegant Bitcoin’s design is,” Minehan answered.
Minehan serves as a technical advisor for Merkle Standard, which is a sustainable mining company, and as an expert witness for the Round Table Group.
This panel concluded after addressing the need for innovation in the space and the ability to adapt in supply shocks. Speaking on the conversation of changing consensus models, Minehan made it clear that industries have risen from proof-of-work, and to abandon that would be nonsensical. The mining industry has vastly evolved over time, and has more room still yet to grow.
Bitcoin 2022 is part of the Bitcoin Event Series hosted by BTC Inc, the parent company of Bitcoin Magazine.