HASHRATE: 354.7 Ph/s LAST BLOCK: 831628 (5D AGO)


Message from OCEAN founder Luke Dashjr

Luke Dashjr
October 31, 2023

In 2011, I started the Eligius mining pool.

At the time, GPU mining was just getting started and the difficulty increases made it obvious that miners needed to work together if they were going to have any regularity in payouts. Over the course of that early period we found many blocks (11,631) and helped the community mine a lot of bitcoins (348,326).

We were very successful, and we had a lot of loyal users who appreciated the transparency and non-custodial payout system of Eligius. Eventually, wizkid057 stepped up to maintain the pool and allow me to focus more on Bitcoin Core development before he also had to step away and shut down the pool. Since that time, the centralization and overreach of other pool operators has changed Bitcoin to the point where

the security model of Bitcoin is at high risk; we have already lost the censorship-resistant property many tout as one of Bitcoin's primary benefits.

Today, pools operate like custodial bank accounts and have the ability to decide who can and who can't use Bitcoin. The so-called "51%" attack vector is already a reality because it only actually takes 20-30% of network hashrate to have a good probability of getting away with an attack.

As for censorship, it is no longer a matter of actual resistance but merely if and when the pools choose to do it there are 11 entities who decide what transactions go in (or stay out) of almost every block, and simply the 2 largest can impose censorship on everyone else with 100% success. This is not some future risk but a present reality, and it's not sustainable if Bitcoin is to remain a permissionless currency.

As we stand today, Bitcoin is not a censorship resistant network, rather it just happens to be a network that is not currently being censored. As with other forms of centralization (hardware, firmware, ...), the role of mining pools must change for Bitcoin to exist as a truly decentralized currency.

To that end, I am relaunching Eligius as OCEAN, a new type of pool that enables miners to be truly miners again. At the start, we are already the most transparent pool giving you full visibility into block templates, generation payouts, miner stats, etc. As miners, you should have the ability to know what transactions you are mining with your hashrate. We are also the only non-custodial pool, making you, the miners, recipients of new block rewards directly from Bitcoin.

Over the next year, I will be redesigning the process of block template construction, leveraging and improving Stratum V2 where possible, to truly decentralize mining. We also plan to incorporate Lightning payouts which will solve the dust problem for small miners. This will also serve the dual benefit of bringing more liquidity to Lightning.

To make it worth everyone's effort to switch, OCEAN will be at 0% for the first 2 months of operation. After that we will need to introduce fees, but they will be kept reasonable and fair for all sizes of miners.

~ Luke Dashjr, 2023