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The Mining Development Kit - Unlocking Innovation in Bitcoin Mining

The Mining Development Kit - Unlocking Innovation in Bitcoin Mining

Are you a developer or bitcoin miner interested in finding new or better uses for bitcoin mining hardware? We welcome you to collaborate and engage with us.

A little while back Jack announced that we were considering launching a bitcoin mining system based on custom silicon and open source, and our intention to build it in open collaboration with the community. The response was overwhelmingly positive, with everyone from home hobbyists to developers, startups and large mining operators expressing encouragement and interest in seeing us launch such a system. As a result, we announced our decision to move forward with the project.

Since then, we have been heads down building a team to explore our mining hardware strategy, and have kicked off the long process of developing our own bitcoin mining semiconductor chips (stay tuned for future updates). These purpose-built application specific integrated circuits (ASICs) are the leading way bitcoin is mined today and will serve as the foundation for a full suite of bitcoin mining products intended to increase the pace of innovation in bitcoin mining, improve energy efficiency and clean energy adoption in mining, decentralize the supply of this critical hardware, increase accessibility to mining, and improve the bitcoin mining user experience.

Today we want to share that we are considering building a mining development kit, or MDK, and we’re inviting you to help us define it. The MDK as we currently envision it will consist of:

1. A powerful, reliable, industrial-grade bitcoin mining hashboard. The hashboard will be designed to be compatible with our custom built control board, as well readily available third party controllers, such as Raspberry Pi. What hardware features do you want to see on the hashboard?

  • Backward compatibility with existing mining hardware?
  • Power requirements and power supply?
  • What are the top things to optimize for?
  • Improved reliability in the field? Ease of maintenance?
  • Increased uptime?
  • Performance? Cost?
  • Cooling methods?

2. A custom designed controller board designed to work with the hashboard. What features would you want to see on the control board?

  • Configuration methods? Are there specific interfaces you’d like to use?
  • What I/O options are needed? Ethernet, WIFI, USB, USB-C?
  • Smart Home API connectivity?

3. Open source firmware, a software API and a web front-end, allowing developers to modify the key performance parameters of the hashboard. What features of the firmware do you want to be able to modify or control via the API? What preferences do you have?

  • Programming language? (e.g. C, Rust, etc.)
  • Operating system preferences? (e.g. Linux)
  • Open source licenses?

4. Extensive reference materials and support documentation to facilitate easy customization of the hashboard. What kind of documentation and training materials would be helpful?

The intention behind the MDK is to provide developers with a suite of tools to help unlock creativity and innovation in bitcoin mining hardware. We anticipate the MDK being useful for development projects focused on integrating bitcoin mining into various novel use cases - such as heating solutions, off-grid mining, home mining or intermittent power applications - as well as optimization of bitcoin mining hardware for traditional commercial mining operations. With the MDK, we see significant opportunity to increase the accessibility and openness of bitcoin mining hardware, in order to accelerate innovation in the field.

Are you a developer or bitcoin miner interested in finding new uses for bitcoin mining hardware, or optimizing its use in existing applications? What challenges have you faced with existing offerings? What features would you like to see in the hashboard? What would you like to see from the MDK?

We’d love to hear from you. Please feel free to reach out to us at get in touch, ask questions, and share your thoughts. Stay tuned for further updates on our mining hardware program in the coming weeks and months.