X11 is a relatively new mining algorithm that has gained some notoriety in a time when ASICs are just now being released for scrypt-based cryptocurrencies. Scrypt was supposed to be a mining algorithm that made mining a more decentralized process, but it seems that it has failed in preventing the creation of hardware that can mine litecoins, dogecoins, and other scrypt coins in a rather quick manner. Understanding the differences between X11 and the other major mining algorithms can be used to help figure out what this new mining algorithm is all about.

Benefits of X11

For any new mining algorithm to become widely popular these days, there needs to be a few extra features that set it apart from the rest of the pack. X11 makes some huge strides when it comes to security, energy efficiency, decentralization, and more.

First of all, X11 offers a superior security model by using eleven different hashing functions during the mining process. Everything from Blake to Keccak is used to secure coins that use this algorithm, which is one of the reasons that this coin has done so well for users who like to mine with CPUs. Creating a situation where the mining power is distributed among more users creates a situation where the coin using the algorithm is actually more secure.

Secondly, X11 is one of the most energy efficient algorithms in existence right now. The algorithm is able to reduce heat by 30% for GPU miners due to the fact that the graphics cards do not need to use as much processing power while mining the coins. In addition to providing cooler GPUs, the algorithm also provides faster hashing for CPUs. The effectiveness of this algorithm creates a situation where less electricity is needed to get involved in the mining process. The fact that less power is needed to mine X11 cryptocurrencies means that this algorithm could become more popular in areas where electricity costs are rather high.

When Satoshi Nakamoto first created Bitcoin, his intention was to have millions of different miners around the world using their CPUs to secure the network. ASICs through that plan out the window, which is why X11 was created in the first place. This algorithm allows for the decentralization of mining power, which helps build hype around any of the coins that decide to use it. Satoshi did predict the creation of ASICs, but we’ll probably never get to know what he thinks about alternative algorithms, such as X11.

Darkcoin

Although most people have probably heard of Darkcoin due to its dedication to anonymous transactions, the fact of the matter is that its usage of the X11 mining algorithm is just as interesting. The idea behind this coin is to pool all of the transactions together in the blockchain, which basically creates a situation where all transactions are mixed together by default. This increases the overall anonymity of the network quite dramatically over other options because users do not have to choose to mix their coins with others. When everyone mixes by default, it creates a larger pool of transactions. This makes it more difficult to figure out who is mixing the coins in the first place. A Darkcoin mining pool was recently added to GHash.IO, with the wallet for withdrawals coming up in the nearest time.

Other X11 Coins

Although this mining algorithm has only been around for a short period of time, there are a large number of different cryptocurrencies that have already put it to good use. In addition to Darkcoin, two of the other most popular X11 cryptocurrencies are Hirocoin and Juggalocoin. Hirocoin aims to provide a variety of extra security features, such as Nite’s Gravity Well and automatic checkpointing, while Juggalocoin gained a bit of attention in the media due to its connection with the fans of the Insane Clown Posse. The long term viability of these X11 coins is still unknown, but it’s interesting to see the large number of different alternatives already being created with the X11 algorithm.