Ok here goes…
I got into bitcoin in April 2012 through mining on a GPU rig, one 7970 AMD served me well and I learnt a lot about the fundamentals through the mining experience. By this point Bitcoin was worth about $7 a coin and I saw my investment as the GPU and the bitcoins as a side bonus that might be worth something one day. The mining was all done on GPU, and it was dominated by pools, a few large GPU rigs were solomining but slush was the big one, but bitparkings pool was one that stood out as an interest with merged mining altcoins of namecoin, Ixcoin, I0coin and devcoin alongside bitcoin.
LTC was mining with a CPU and I could see the lay of the land for a mass POW mining arms race should the price of bitcoin ever shoot to the moon this would fund the development for LTC GPU miners. The market was happy and filled with people speculating on bitcoin with GPU rigs and anyone unable to afford the GPU was mining LTC with a CPU. Any “clonecoins” back in those days were quickly snuffed out by community members if they showed premining, no announcement, no variation etc… BBQcoin was one of these as an example.
Then one day while browsing the altcoin section of bitcointalk I see this announcement from SunnyKing that there will be a new coin launched in 9 days and source code released to all at same time in order to try this new POS hybrid method of securing the blockchain. Firstly I liked the style of the post, SunnyKing was announcing the launch date giving everyone time to review the paper and get ready for the launch of the coin so as to give equal opportunity to all in the early stages. Secondly there were a number of familiar big names in the bitcoin world posting, reviewing and commenting on this POS hybrid and how it was going to work. SunnyKing was relentless in answering them all and came across confident in his choices and fundamentals of ppcoin, it was in these early days I became aware that SunnyKing was not your average bitcoin user and rather someone whom is very visionary and capable of writing very good code. He inspired me to further myself and strive to know and be able to do more.
PPCoin was launched and it took me a few days to get completely up and running mining on my GPU, but oh the days when my 7970 with 600MH could mine about 3 blocks in a day and the reward per block was about 1200 PPC. I set 50,000PPC as a target to mine and hold in a wallet to try the POS minting in 30 days. The race was also on to set up a pool for POW mining as there were days I got unlucky and found no blocks. NothinG setup the first pool and most of my coins were minined through there, but I wanted to try and give something extra to the few of us who were interested in this new coin. So I setup https://www.peercointalk.org with a number of guides on how to mine, what your config file should look like etc and ran it as a Drupal forum site. Never run drupal before but inspired by this SunnyKing to try new things and step outside the box. Pretty much immediately swamped by spam on the forum and had to switch eventually to SMF as we are today with its better spam prevention and options.
I had found a new passion in life… Peercoin, with this variation on the bitcoin code suddenly all the github repo’s for bitcoin related tools were potential useful coding projects to teach myself new and exciting code. Peercoin was repeatedly said by Sunny to be an experiment and to think about what you are investing, his level-headedness and weekly updates provided the confirmation PPCoin was here to stay and the POW sha-256 worked as an excellent distribution method as a few other pools added PPC (coinotron, bitparking) people became interested in minting blocks especially as the trick was to leave the coins in a wallet for more than 30 days without moving. 95% of all you could do at this point with any bitcoins was gamble it on sites and people would sometimes double up what they mined and most lost all they had mined, so forgetting about coins for a month seemed like a great investment as well.
The POS environmentally friendly aspect of PPC was not really touted so much in the first year, as POS was yet to be securing the network, but as bitcoin mining went to FPGA and then ASIC the arms race had really begun and suddenly all SHA-256 coins were under threat from 51% attacks if someone ordered all the ASIC’s or if an attacker developer the chip first. Suddenly I realised the true brilliance of Sunnyking as PPC was becoming secured by POS at this point and the threat was completely countered by the actual design of the coin. Maintaining a public ledger through POS as the ones that hold the most have the most to loose reduced the heavy expense of maintaining the blockchian through POW. Bitcoin price has always been tied to the cost of electricity and the difficulty of the network, Peercoin allowed for the same public ledger but without the overheads of daily electricity consumption.
Peercoin as a backbone currency is something that SunnyKing has always said, but it was Jordan Lee who made that a reality through the creation of Peershares. I believe there will be some exciting times ahead for Peercoin as more Peershares implementations are launched. The peercoin community has always been there for me, I have had some tough times but there are some great people capable of amazing things when they put their minds to it. Peercoin has attracted some very capable developers and there are some amazing projects like peerbox that just add to the interest peercoin has to offer.
One of the most memorable events for me in Peercoin would be the introduction of ASIC’s to the mining scene. Suddenly Peercoin was unique. Never would we see a SHA-256 coin launched with Peercoin’s parameters as the security could no longer be guaranteed through POW as a bitcoin pool would easily be able to attack the coin. Peercoin had made another unique feature about it that just made me believe I should invest my time with this coin and community.