Gridcoin 4.0-2018 General Roadmap Poll - Receiving Earned Research Rewards

in #gridcoin2 years ago (edited)

Gridcoin 4.0-2018 General Roadmap Poll - Receiving Earned Research Rewards

This is the description and thread for the Gridcoin 4.0-2018 General Roadmap Poll pertaining to how Gridcoin users receive their earned research rewards. You can find the Cryptocurrency Talk thread, which contains information on all polls, here. Any questions asked on this thread should relate only to this poll. Any questions on the Cryptocurrency Talk thread that are related to this poll will be relayed here and vice versa. Please, do not be afraid to ask questions. We want to make sure that everyone understands what they are voting on.

You can find the poll on Gridcoinstats here.
The poll was made by @tomasbrod with address: SFhy5MRyNqVcC2pCtEYeMSULe6wA5SPYMk.


Earned Research Rewards (ERR) are the rewards a user has earned for crunching work units for BOINC projects. Currently, there is one way for a user to receive their ERR. They receive their ERR when they stake a block on the Gridcoin blockchain. As mentioned in the article covering poll #3, a user’s balance is the main variable that determines how likely a user is to stake a block. In other words, a user with a high balance is more likely to stake a block than a user with a low balance. For many users it is effectively impossible to stake a block and receive their ERR in a reasonable amount of time. This forces them to join a pool. When a user joins a pool, they lose all their BOINC stats and they cannot use their magnitude to vote in the Gridcoin client. There have been two ideas put forward that would allow non-staking balance users to be solo miners but still receive their ERR.

Manual ERR Claims (MERRC)

Manual ERR Claims intends to provide an alternative to receiving ERR through staking. Additionally, MERRC adds an economic tool to the Gridcoin ecosystem in the form of Manual Claim Fees.

MERRC works much like the rewards claiming of steemit. At any time, a user would have the option to manually claim their ERR in an upcoming block. This claim system would function as an alternative to standard staking and pools, which would remain unaffected. To prevent spam, a fee similar to a transaction fee would be required to manually claim your rewards. This is the Manual Claim Fee (MCF).

It is possible, though not immediately necessary, to distribute MCFs to an array of entities such as stakers, the GRC Foundation, Gridcoin development bounties and projects, BOINC projects, charities, relief efforts, causes and crowdsourcing. MCFs could also be used as an economic tool, for instance they could be burned to control inflation. There would need to be an extended conversation if we decide to develop MERRC in order to determine a future path. For simplicity of implementation it might make most sense to treat MCFs as transactions fees, fees that are added to blocks as rewards for staking.

More information on using MCF as a source of funding can be found here

Superblock Payouts

Another alternative is to pay all users with a ERR value greater than 5 in each daily superblock. The upsides are frequent payouts for everyone, including new users. On the downside, there is no incentive to hold mined coins. The large volume of transactions would also mean that the block size limit would likely have to be lifted for the size of these superblocks.

"Do you think we need a way other than staking a block for users to receive their earned research rewards?"

-Yes, focus on superblock payout
-Yes, focus on Manual ERR Claims
-Yes, I support exploring both options
-Yes, but I do not like either of these options
-Need more information


I absolutely reject the superblock payout concept for a few reasons:

  • Zero documentation/specs on how it could be done safely.
  • Superblocks have been proven insecure in testnet recently, and similarly in production back in september. We would require a massive overhaul of the NN system to even begin considering this concept.
  • We currently reward one user per block, increasing this to several hundred would potentially require significant compute time (an undocumented challenge).

Manual ERR claims sound interesting, but we will require balancing of economic policy in this scenario given that we would be removing one of the main reasons to hold GRC (to stake & earn your rewards). Burn based mag multiplier perhaps could offset the economic damage that MERR could cause in the short term.

Though, we already do have open source gridcoin pools for those with zero GRC, why make substantial economic policy changes for these users when external solutions already exist? I'm torn on this topic, bring economic balancing policies to the table.

These are my feelings too and summarize why I indicated that I do not think we should explore these options yet.

Personally, I think there is little reason to implement either superblock payouts or Manual Earned Research Reward Claims yet - development attention should be focused elsewhere for the time being. At the moment I will be voting "No". I am open to being convinced I'm wrong; change my view...

To expand on @tomasbrod's point, this is a poll gauging interest regarding the quest to get earned research rewards to users without them having to stake a block. If there is a yes vote, the goal to "find a way to get ERR to users other than staking a block" (or something similar) will be put on the general 2018 roadmap with a reference to the results of this poll. Where it is put on the roadmap will be a matter of discussion for developers. The results of this poll will help inform developers as to which idea, if any (or both), is generally supported by the community.

If you think that we do not need to find a new way to get ERR to users in 2018, vote no.
If you think we do, vote yes with your preferred option.

I may be misunderstanding: Do you mean that ERR distribution should not be an issue for 2018? If so, forget everything I've said. = ) I will express my opinion in another post, I just want to make sure there is no confusion here.

this post has been relayed to CCT

I should have been more clear in my comment as I'm aware that these polls are to gauge community interest in looking into these areas. Upvoted both your comments for clarity. ... However, I do mean that (in my mind) it should not be an issue for 2018.

I think here begins some dangerous misunderstanding. I thought, voting no on this poll means that you reject the idea of "claiming rewards aside from staking" altogether.
It is not only about our understanding, but also affects how results can be interpreted.

I agree, I think the best use of resources is to make the wallet rock solid stable and to create a light wallet such as crt's project.

Thanks for all the hard work!

I think it's wise to bring in as much expertise as possible. Manual ERR Claims sounds great to me, but is there any way we could have a professional do a security audit of this (and other proposals)?

Alternatively, if a well-established coin already implements a given mechanism, then that should count as provisional evidence for its security.

I agree that any development should be audited. This process needs to be discussed and described by devs. Regarding this and other roadmap polls, there is little or no code to implement for anything yet. These are more the culmination of months of discussions that will put the ideas onto a roadmap for 2018.

Once the ideas are developed fully, I'm sure there will be an auditing process.

Yeah, of course we have a development team who I'm sure is aware of the need to do security checks. So I don't want to sound like I'm belittling them. On the other hand, I think a third-party audit may be well worth the investment.

Anyways, I just wanted to make sure that factor was already in people's minds and we weren't rushing into things. For now, yeah, it makes sense to focus on getting a roadmap together!

If you want, you can have a look on the technical specification and express your thoughts. Your contributions are welcome! There is no bounty for it yet, but I am sure it can be arranged. The spec is currently more scattered than I would like, on tasks repository, the Original read-map article and github wikis

Just saw your comment now! My apologies. I will take a look if I can find the time. My expertise is not in the field of IT or computer science, but I do have a technical background so maybe I could still find a way to contribute.

Steemit is already a great example of a blockchain that does manual rewards

More technical and popular information regarding this topic can be found in the Original read-map article and a chain of progress reports.

I think security is definitely paramount. However, if there is a fee for rewards claim does this not defeat the purpose for low balance holders since they can already get rewards in the pool without paying fees.

Pools do deduct fees from your rewards already.

You are right, I thought had no fees. However, the fee is so small (0.05 grc per payout) that it is almost free.

You make a good point that definitely has to be considered. I think it is also important to keep in mind that transaction fees, as an example of what MERRC fees might look like, are only 0.01 GRC (recommended).

MERCTrX is likely going to use only so much resources as standard TrX, so they should undergo the same fees. @jringo's "side-staking" somewhat complicates fees policy.
Regardless of both, more extensive talk on the topic of fees will be needed (TrX spam, blocksize...).

Nice information

@jringo this article is brilliantly written in regards to a quick overview of pros and cons. Often I don't vote because I can't find a clear enough explanation and would rather make no choice than the wrong one. Thank you!

Can you possibly expand on this idea under Superblock Payments:

On the downside, there is no incentive to hold mined coins.

On behalf of everyone who helped, thank you! We're glad to be of service. There were half a dozen of us in the original article and an additional handful of us working on these in #poll-drafts on slack.

This statement is alluding to the requirements to receive your ERR. In order to receive your ERR you must stake. In order to stake, you must save up your GRC. Superblock payments would remove this requirement to receive your ERR. In truth, any removal of the stake barrier between a user and their ERR would remove this need to save to earn ERR, which could be viewed as good or bad... this is not phrased neutrally. I may need to edit this section. Thanks for bringing it to my attention!

I see. That makes perfect sense. Thanks as always @jringo.

How about a staking cue added to the current model?

Right now, if you stake you go into a 16 hour (?) hold while those coins are verified and then you go right back into the staking pool.

How about instead: when you stake you to to the back of a line. The next lucky person (based on the current model of staking chances) stakes and then takes a place behind you. In this way the low guys are just as are likely to stake a block as the high guys, but everyone gets a turn.

First time ERR earners are going to have trouble with the Manual Claim Fee (MCF). Where are they going to get coins to pay in order to get their coins? Sure, faucet could be an answer, but as someone new to crypto (still) and learning rapidly - I assure you that the simple application of the faucet was still a difficult concept to get my head around when I started reading. (anyone going back and looking at my earlier Reddit threads would agree.)

Superblock payouts are plausable early on IMHO, but given the rate that the GRC network is growing, I can imagine that it wouldn't take long for that to become a massive superblock - and a new approach would be needed.

I'll be reading this post and trying to figure it out before I vote.

Keep in mind that a principal purpose of transaction fees in blockchain tech, including with MERRC, is to prevent an adversary from spamming the network with data (transactions). General transaction fees for blockchains are very low. Gridcoin currently suggests a .001 GRC for transactions, and forces a .00011 fee for registering a beacon.

A MERRC fee is likely to be very similar to these fee structures. The intent is only to prevent someone from clicking the button a million times in a row.

Even so, where is that first time user going to get 0.0000001 GRC to try to get his claim? That is the foundation of my question.

SOURCE: I was dang nervous when I started this about when my payout was going to come to me. The correct answer was: "Patience Grasshoper" . What I lacked was patience. :-)

EDIT: Ya know.... I don't know why I didn't think about the faucet as the answer for this.
The answer becomes: Go to the faucet, then issue your pay me request.