Hi there, with an avalanche of information circulating out there, I’ve become passionate about spreading knowledge while keeping it as simple as a watercooler conversation, I want to start at “Bite sized” series of articles in the interest of keeping the information easily chewable with the goal of it being easily digested, here goes ... ;-).
All the term “Hashing power” means in a nutshell is the number of times per second an input can be entered into what is called a “hash function” or “Hash table” to be output (the output is technically known as a “Digest”) into a certain size of data.
In simple terms (keeping it “Bite Sized”), you could technically say that a hash function is like a translation map that will convert a certain input (regardless of the length of characters) into a fixed size of random looking characters
The size of this output data is determined by what’s called a “hashing algorithm”. For the hashing algorithm called SHA-256 (SHA is an acronym for Secure Hash Algorithm), which is what the Bitcoin block chain uses, the output is 256 bits of data in length.
The output is “deterministic”, this means that every specific input will derive the exact same output.
So at a very basic level, the “hash power” is the number of inputs in a certain amount of time a processor (or your brain) can perform in an effort to find that “deterministic” output. A side note is that the hash function is only one-way. So there is no way to perform this function in reverse.
CPU’s and video cards come with a certain amount of “Hash Power”. This is one of the core fundamentals of how crypto currency “Mining” or “Proof of work” is performed. Bitcoin has by far the biggest most powerful “Hashing power” which makes many many experts believe it is by far the most secure block chain in existence.
Once again this article aims to keep cryptocurrency knowledge bite sized so that it is easily chewable and digestible. I intend to get into another bite sized portion in relation to the basic principles of how mining works and what “hashing power” means to mining, and also how and what block chain “security” is. Let me know if there are any other cryptocurrency bite sized topics interests you.