PoS sucks?

This video claims that PoS sucks https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hyFwn36UFsA
…it is from a BTC maximalist who claims that PoS has hidden energy costs and that finally the total energy costs are not less that PoW, and with PoS there is less security.

He makes the comparison to how ‘electric cars’ give the illusion of less energy consumption whereas in reality is still takes the same amount of energy to move a car as with a gas engine, but with an electric car the energy production is only geographically removed from the place of burning that energy.

Any thought? Is this guy just a fanatic BTC guy trying to bash anything which is different than BTC or is there truth in what he is saying?

I think he has a point regarding the cost of electricity will be virtually the same, because you’ll still need an electronic device with the wallet turned on. Personally, for me, POS is much better for personal use, because I work as a developer, and I have my computer on 16h a day anyway, and since POS doesn’t use any processing power, I’m virtually staking all day, every day.

His point stops making sense once you develop cold storage POS though. What he says about gaming the block history seems nonsensical to me, at least in the context of Cardano. If the 'randomness" of the algorithm becomes manageable by people, they’ll just change it anyway.

It would seem to me that while yes POS uses PC power - as you say, people have their PCs on all the time anyway, so that power is being consumed anyway - I’d say POS uses far less power.

Also POS is not about randomly GUESSING some hash (as far as I understand), so this one difference would also mean less power consumption, no?


Exactly, there’s no processing power being used for it. So you can have your machine doing other stuff while you stake, which you obviously can’t while mining. Specially if IOHK can develop cold staking as they say.

The only question I have about POS is on the economical sense. If you imagine a world where every currency uses POS, there is no incentive to spend/invest the currency, because there’s no incentive to circulate the currency. Right now with fiat there’s an inherent incentive to spending or investing due to inflation, so when the inflation is bigger than the interests you get from your savings, you have a vested interest in investing that money. But I guess that’s more of a philosophical point of view, and there may be no right or wrong.

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I’ve seen this guy interview with Doug Polk… who also believes in Bitcoin, but is probably not what I would call a maximalist.

I think Jimmy Song is a smart guy, and he brings up some interesting points regarding PoW versus PoS. The idea that the “work” has to come from somewhere in both PoW and PoS does make sense. There is no free lunch right?

However, from my understanding, he believes that a PoS system will be more prone to attacks and thus would equal the same amount of “power” to run as a PoW system. Basically, someone somewhere is paying to run the stake pools and get the power needed. He contends that there will be power struggles that will be hidden from view, but still present in a PoS system. Whereas in a PoW system, nothing is hidden, these power struggles between miners is pretty transparent.


He believes PoW = Electronic (Computational) Power Consumption whereas PoS will be “behind the scenes” power consumption in the form of attacks and power struggles between stake holders/pools.

I guess we’ll see.


The most compelling points he makes is about PoS not being secure like PoW. He also argues that there must be some centralized means of determining who in a pool gets the stake reward. He also claims that you can hide in several staking pools. Most people concede that PoW is much more secure than PoS. How does the Cardano team overcome this inherent weakness ?


Is is secure, read more about Ouroboros

or view this video


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This guy’s assumption regarding cars is not adoptable for a PoW/S comparison.

If he want to compare PoW with mobility then this way:

A participant of the chain calls all parcel services and says that he has a parcel to be picked up without mentioning his address. He only says that he waits there at the roadside with a sign with a number with xxx leading zeros on it.
Immediately all service providers send all their trucks to find the address with full throttle as fast as possible.
The roads are filling up and a lot of gasoline is consumed. At some point one of the drivers is lucky and guesses the right road. For this he will be paid princely, and then together with all the others he will immediately start looking for the next magic package again.
As time goes on, more and more drivers are trying to find an address anywhere in the world. All of them push the accelerator as long and as hard as they can.
The accusation that they are consuming too much energy is countered by the fact that they are also consuming biofuel, which is obtained from food produced from large cultivation areas in the former Brazilian jungle. Or that they are willing to buy the energy generated from solar and hydroelectric power. Instead, regular consumers can continue to purchase coal and nuclear power instead of switching to these sustainable sources.


@werkof We need to develop a proof-of-comprehension algo to reward everybody who understands your post. LOL I enjoy your creative thinking. And I think we can project our own meaning onto your post so that it means whatever we want it to mean. That’s the best kind of poetry!


my “poetry” seems most likely to be quite strange to you, because I wrote it down in English during the lunch break, while I think about it in another language.
Anyway, I believe that Bitcoin is something like the old Token Ring network topology from the 1980s. A good and easy way to start and show that it can work. But -
after 9 years - still nothing scalable and efficient.
I also believe that PoW is so fundamental and important to their chains that it would be far too dangerous to rely on such a thing, because we already know right now and exactly that these are our critical and limited resources in the near and medium term. Or are people planning to use their huge gambling gains to buy new houses far away from all thus areas covered by seawater in the following decades?

People and companies who insist on PoW are very likely to do so because they want to maintain their influence and power with the hardware they have invested. This also explains why they are not interested in larger blocks or other intelligent improvements that could replace their “power”.

We as humanity are either in a position to solve this much smarter than PoW, or we should think again about the true value of banking services. Anything now announced as disruptive, at first should prove that it isn’t mainly destructive for this little blue ball we all live on.


Yes, I assumed English was not your first language and I enjoyed your comments anyway. I also shared some similar feelings here:


If a user or stakeholder is caught trying to scam the system, they lose their stake. Would a hacker be willing to lose their stake in a matter of possibly a couple days trying to game the system… especially on a system as easy to audit as Haskell?

Just trying to bring some practical thinking back into the mix here.

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sorry, I agree we became too philosophic.

even if the first 10 minutes are pretty much generic the just-published video about PoS tells a lot about the effective challenges in PoS

My impression is that we (they at IOHK) already know that we don’t know yet enough to solve this decentralization goal in short terms or in a way like the 2009-2015 approaches. They know that it needs some fundamental different and strategic approach, requiring time and a much more than good programming skills and good online marketing. This is good because it’s a very important step towards a solution.

Let’s see if the petrolic/carbonic/atomic bitcoin gang is able to accept that it’s not sustainable to continue rolling out their approach. If it turns out that PoS can’t resist against the dark side of human behaviour and also that PoW is not compatible with our earth’s nature, we either have to look for prove-of-x or go back to bankers.

The idea that there is a fixed amount of energy required to run the blockchain is completely false, as proven by history. Bitcoin 5 years ago processed the same number of blocks with far less electricity. Altcoins process more transactions with less. All of the numbers fluctuate daily.

There is no basis for assuming that PoS and PoW use the same amount of electricity, when PoW chains don’t even use the same amount as each other.


Isn’t comparing power consumption for POS vs POW as the same ridiculous? For me to stake, all I need is a laptop /small desktop running. For me to mine, I would have to make a mining rig. And those thing consume hell of a lot more power than my laptop. Also crazy inconvenient to run/make/buy a mining rig, which hampers adoption IMO.

As what I got from the IOHK whiteboard presentation, Cardano’s POS protocol Oroboros, it has been mathematically proven that it is secure with peer review. That doesn’t mean they will be able to implement it, but the roadmap is looking good.

And they gasoline/electric car argument is just pure bullshit. Buy electric cars. Just like Cardano, they are the future.

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“I think he has a point regarding the cost of electricity will be virtually the same, because you’ll still need an electronic device with the wallet turned on.”

– no you won’t.

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“Isn’t comparing power consumption for POS vs POW as the same ridiculous? For me to stake, all I need is a laptop /small desktop running.”

– you won’t even need that, because you can (and will probably want to) stake with a staking pool.

The staking pool, and ONLY the staking pool, will need to be running all the time. You will turn your computer on, open your wallet, delegate your stake, close wallet, turn off computer.



@werkof, that is great explanation you gave.

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All you have to do is… HODL

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