Saving the world, one browser at a time

Published in El Pais, 8 May 2018.

By now everyone has heard about Bitcoin and the high value it has accumulated. What many do not know is that bitcoin must be mined to release new coins into the world and verify transactions. This is done through computers using their power to solve algorithms and doing so gets you bitcoin as a reward. Before you decide to quit your job and use your computer to mine for Bitcoin you should know that mining requires a lot of computing power and it could take up to 100 years for a traditional computer to mine a single coin. Those who are serious into mining invest thousands of dollars in special computers designed only for mining and even then, there is no guarantee of a positive return of investment. This should not totally discourage you from getting involved however, as organizations such as UNICEF are making it possible for thousands of users to contribute some of their computing power to mine for various cryptocurrencies to help fund their cause.

To be a part of UNICEF’s pool is simple, simply go onto the website (https://www.thehopepage.org/), click start donating and decide how much of your computer’s power you would like to contribute. What you contribute individually may not be much but collectively (over 9000 at time of writing this column) UNICEF could mine a substantial amount. They are not the first to do this either as last November the New inquiry launched Bail Bloc to use donated computer power to help post bail for those who cannot afford it.

If you are not excited about either of these projects, this is still a subject that many should keep an eye on this could be a painless way for organizations to ask for contributions. Instead of asking for money, simply ask users to visit their website when online.

Of course, it will take time to measure the success of such ideas. Although mining has been around since Bitcoin’s inception is still a new concept for many and so far the amount of money raised by the two mentioned organizations is around $1,000-$3,000 a month. But as cryptocurrency becomes more mainstream so to will mining, and while to get involved in crypto mining for personal gain may be out of reach. When that happens, many may be excited by the prospect of helping out simply by doing what many already do for several hours a day, surf the web.

About Matthew Glezos 141 Articles
Matthew is Canadian and has a Master in Business Administration. He has international experience in marketing and strategy. He has a strong interest in technology and combines it with the business side.

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