Spencer Yang

@spenceryang

Expecto patronum — a starter user guide to Grin & Mimblewimble

Peeling the invisibility cloak to reveal what magic of Grin and the magical world of the MimbleWimble blockchain implementation

Expecto patronum — go away bears!

Expecto Patronum — Grin is conjured

Grin has just launched as of 11PM GMT+8. I’m extremely excited for this event and have chosen to put together this content piece to help commemorate this milestone and make an easy to read piece for people who are new to Grin. This should bring you in as first years and equip you with enough resources to venture to the second year and beyond.

You can use this post as a guide, read the links and come back later to finish the rest of the post. Onwards~

Read the whitepaper(s) to understand why Mimblewimble or Grin

On 19 July, 2016 — A person or a group nicknamed: “Tom Elvis Jedusor” dropped the whitepaper for Mimblewimble on the world in a private IRC channel as an introduction to Grin: https://download.wpsoftware.net/bitcoin/wizardry/mimblewimble.txt

“I call my creation Mimblewimble because it is used to prevent the blockchain from talking about all user's information” - Tom Elvis Jedusor

Within a span of 3 months, Andrew Poelstra submitted a follow-up whitepaper solving various issues and thus bringing us deeper down the rabbit hole. https://download.wpsoftware.net/bitcoin/wizardry/mimblewimble.pdf

If you’re relatively new to cryptocurrencies and blockchain, I’d suggest this explanation of the benefits of Mimblewimble by the Beam team:
https://medium.com/beam-mw/mimblewimble-explained-like-youre-12-d779a5bb483d

You can then supplement the information with the official documentation and introduction to Grin and Mimblewimble:
https://github.com/mimblewimble/grin/blob/master/doc/intro.md

Note that Grin and Beam are both implementations of the MimbleWimble blockchain. Now that you understand what’s Elliptic Curve cryptography, Pederson commitment, and how it enables the node to never know what the transaction amounts were, you can proceed.

How many Grin coins does Gringotts have?

The number of Grincoins can be modeled in the following chart. The total supply at any time can be determined by block height * 60 since Grin is designed to have a block every 60 seconds on average with 60 Grincoins in each block.

One can see that this is very similar to that of Bitcoin. CryptoProfG goes in depth and analyses Grincoins’ monetary model in detail with his views as a store of value: https://medium.com/@CryptoProfG/grin-money-explained-4-exploring-grins-monetary-model-e48b1761653

Am I contributing to someone’s pockets again?

Since last year, we’ve seen many companies where the team receives outsized rewards and have not delivered on product. Grin is not doing an ICO, there’s no premine and the development of Grin is entirely funded by donations and the community. Needless to say, this gets us very excited to be a part of the community to actively contribute. Supply starts from 0.

Let the chanting (mining) begin

As Ethereum miners shut down their miners due to profitability issues, we’ve seen significant mining demand for Grin. Most large pools are now supporting Grin: f2pool, SparkPool, MWGrinpool, Grinmint to name the top few.

Grin Mainnet will accept Cuckaroo29 and Cuckatoo31+ with the latter comprising 10% of blocks mined. Cuckatoo31+ is meant to be ASIC friendly and will likely be 100% after 2 years, giving manufacturers ample time to plan ahead and develop ASICs.

The primary proof-of-work is designed to be ASIC friendly and is not expected to change in the future. ASICs manufacturers are encouraged to design specialized machine to mine it.

For existing GPU holders, the estimated GPU mining stats for the various supported cards can be found here: https://github.com/mimblewimble/docs/wiki/GPU-Mining-Stats

If you are curious on what the network hashrates and difficulty are, keep close tabs on this resource by the BlockCypher team.

Viewing the Triwizard Grin tournament

Not everyone can participate in mining, but if you want to just watch the blocks get created, I’d recommend you build or use a Grin block explorer (Grinscan maybe? I checked and it’s bought by some cunning folk).

Our friends at Counter.network built this too: https://grin.merklepath.com/

You can also head over to CoinMarketCap.com and CoinGecko.com to observe prices and other information once they have successfully integrated the APIs.

Greed is good

As with any amazing cryptocurrency project, we all have to admit speculation is part of the fun. Exchanges, decentralized exchanges, OTC networks and derivatives markets all serve that purpose and more. We also need a healthy market and liquidity to make sure all participants have a healthy playground. We see a growing list of exchanges throwing their hats to the game.

bisq.network
counter.network
bitmesh.com
galleon.exchange
grinpay.org
chainrift.com
hb.top
nexex.io
vinex.network
kkex.vip
bitforex

These exchanges will be possible places to store your tokens. I’d also recommend holding them in your own wallet with your own keys. You can follow this guide to install and run a Grin node + wallet on your MacOS or Linux device: https://medium.com/luxor/how-to-install-and-run-a-grin-node-wallet-32f344591478.

Wallet713 for Grin by Vault713: https://github.com/vault713/wallet713

I definitely hope to see good hardware wallet solutions being developed. Time to get to work Ledger, KeepKey, Cobo Vault, Trezor and imKey team.

Keep the party going

Donation is a key part of making sure Grin core developers continue making Grin more awesome. You can buy Grin merchandise, organize events, attend events and contribute to the general fund: https://grin-tech.org/funding

Meet other fellow wizards

What’s a community without conversations, discussions and debates? You can discuss over telegram chats, meetups, conferences

Gitter: https://gitter.im/grin_community/Lobby
Discord: https://discordapp.com/invite/Z3sEfEU
Grinhub Telegram Group: t.me/GrinCoin
Grinfans Telegram Group: t.me/grinfans
Grincon US: https://grincon.us/
Grin Asia meetup: https://meetup.com/grinasia/

Spencer Yang can be found lurking on Telegram @spenceryang.

He’s a partner at Hashtag Capital. Hashtag Capital is a multi-strategy electronic trading fund. We specifically provide OTC services for Grin. We will donate a certain % of profits to the Grin community fund. We co-organize events like Grin Asia (meetup.com/grinasia) in Singapore on 23 January, 2019.

The partners of Hashtag Capital have supported the growth of companies like CryptoAudiences, Counter Network, CryptoKitties, CoinMarketCap, Cobo, Chainrock, Akio Labs, PledgeCamp, EOSIO.SG and many others over the past 2 years.

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