Jack Dorsey’s Block asks for input on proposed ‘mining development kit’

Payments company Block, formerly known as Square, is delving deeper into the crypto mining industry with potential plans to build a “mining development kit.”

A March 7 blog post revealed that the multi-national technology company founded by Jack Dorsey was contemplating its latest vision for advancing its Bitcoin (BTC) mining ambitions. Senior product leader for mining hardware, Naoise Irwin, asked for feedback on the concept via email.

The mining development kit (MDK), if it goes ahead, will provide developers with a “suite of tools” with the aim of increasing the “accessibility and openness” of Bitcoin mining.

Block noted that the kit would include several components, including an “industrial-grade Bitcoin mining” hashboard designed to be compatible with the company’s custom control board and third-party controllers such as Raspberry Pi.

In addition, there will be a custom controller board designed to work with the “hashboard”.

The company asked what features users would like to see on the proposed hardware, such as power requirements, connections required, and how much it should cost.

There will also be open-source firmware, a software API and a web front-end, “allowing developers to customize key performance parameters of the hashboard,” it said.

Block asked for additional feedback on the software, reference materials, and supporting documentation.

“The intent behind the MDK is to provide developers with a suite of tools to help unlock creativity and innovation in Bitcoin mining hardware.”

The plan replicates the Bitcoin Developer Kit and Lightning Developer Kit projects developed by Block Subsidy Spiral.

Related: Block continues to hunt for wallet partners nearly two years later

In October 2021, Dorsey announced plans for an open-source Bitcoin mining system for businesses and individuals. Those plans were confirmed in January 2022 and development began.

Irwin stated that since then “we have built a team to explore our mining hardware strategy, and have kicked off the long process of developing our own Bitcoin mining semiconductor chips (ASICs)”,

He ended the blog post by indicating that there will be further updates on the mining hardware program in the coming weeks and months.