Bit­coin min­ing can power neu­ro­science, says chief AI sci­en­tist

Financial Nigeria Magazine - - Development -

At the Block­Show Asia, last Novem­ber, Yang­dong Deng, chief AI sci­en­tist of Blockchain startup, MA­TRIX AI Net­work, ex­plained how in­sert­ing ar­ti­fi­cial in­tel­li­gence (AI) into the Blockchain ecosys­tem would make it pos­si­ble to use Bit­coin min­ing com­pu­ta­tional power for sci­en­tific in­no­va­tion.

The Blockchain is the tech­nol­ogy that pow­ers Bit­coin and other dig­i­tal cur­ren­cies. Ac­cord­ing to Deng, the cur­rent com­put­ing power be­ing used in Bit­coin min­ing op­er­a­tions is 8.23x10²² float­ing point op­er­a­tions (FLOPS) per sec­ond, while the to­tal com­put­ing power in the world is 1.2x10²³ FLOPS. Ac­cord­ing to these cal­cu­la­tions, Bit­coin min­ing is con­sum­ing 17 per­cent of to­tal global com­put­ing power, val­i­dat­ing the fre­quent ac­cu­sa­tions that Bit­coin min­ing is waste­ful.

MA­TRIX AI Net­work is seek­ing to rein­vent min­ing al­go­rithms by in­clud­ing AI into the equa­tion through a Bayesian min­ing sys­tem that uti­lizes a Markov chain Monte Carlo al­go­rithm (MCMC). Be­cause these com­pu­ta­tions func­tion sim­i­larly to tra­di­tional min­ing func­tions, they work well for Bit­coin min­ing.

As Deng ar­gues, us­ing AI, the com­put­ing power used to ver­ify trans­ac­tions on the Bit­coin net­work can be lever­aged for other uses out­side the world of cryp­tocur­ren­cies, in­clud­ing chem­i­cal re­ac­tion sim­u­la­tions, med­i­cal di­ag­noses and com­plex fi­nance mod­el­ling.

In­tel re­cently filed a patent for a Blockchain-based sys­tem that also works to har­ness the en­ergy used in cryp­tocur­rency min­ing for sci­en­tific de­vel­op­ment – in this case ge­netic se­quenc­ing.

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