Proof of Work

A type of work function used in blockchain consensus algorithms that involves a race to solve to invert a function to find a specific number which is added to a block of transactions to add it to a chain of blocks. In computer science terms, the participants in this system race to compute the preimage to a hash function.

Proof of work mining has been criticized for being intentionally wasteful and consuming vast amounts of silicon resources and compute time.

See also mining, proof of stake, environmental footprint of crypto.


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