Safenetwork sustainability concerns - Bandwidth has an ongoing cost however Safenetwork is a pay once, benefit forever model


To stem the near doubling of bandwidth (backbone) each year would require something like a natural disaster. Research and current developments has a doubling each year for many many years to come.

So yes that is what is required to do what you are saying.’

AND you have been told this before. But reality does not sit well with you or your argument. Your argument is an artificial one and deny the reality of the situation .

Bandwidth not increasing and bandwidth/quota costs not decreasing to the consumer requires some sort of disaster (natural, political, war, etc) And then your argument is unreal in that situation. You know one in a 100 billion situation.


@foreverjoyful you are bringing this topic to the top for weeks and weeks now - I’m pretty sure everybody is aware of your concerns and will keep it in his/her mind when it comes to costs and safecoin implementation

Why don’t you let this rest now for a while until we reach the point where we discuss everything related to safecoin implementation - then every aspect will probably be discussed in detail and length… At least to me this lengthy discussion just has the effect that I’m annoyed by it… There have been many discussions about this ‘issue’ and it surely won’t be forgotten at safecoin implementation… But keeping it at top of the threads is simply annoying and won’t result in not discussing it later again… So… Why not wait for the right time :wink:


Yeah fair enough. I was just scared if the network launches it may be late causing everyone potentially to lose data but since they designed it so that the network could be changed without compromising existing data, I’m happy to wait and discuss it later :slight_smile:


Very interesting and informative thread. I wish it had been one of the first I came across when joining the forum (it would have been had I joined a few days earlier). I would say it would be a good one for every newcomer’s recommended reading list as it may clear up a lot of problems based on the "intuition"of old paradigms. Perhaps this points to the need for a “recommended reading” list in addition to the “Top 10 things you need to know” thread. For myself, having found this thread very early on would have provided some key background information that wasn’t readily gleaned elsewhere and solved a lot of problems in my thinking about SAFE. This would have also made conversations on other topics I’ve had with other members more productive.

The impression I got from @foreverjoyful was that he had good intentions when initiating the conversation and exploring these ideas. However, @happybeing, @neo, @Traktion, @riddim, and others (including Mr. Irving) do provide a rather convincing argument early on why farming would be sustainable. At the very least it would seem that educating new farmers/users about the concept that safecoin returned for storage is a payment for a piece of eternity is important, which is fairly easy to do (perhaps via an updated perpetual data video??). It was pointed out that as long as everyone is made aware of SAFE’s mode of operation then real world economic forces concerning perpetual bandwidth and hardware costs will likely be factored in when making their decision to provide resources to the network. For me, it is rather clear that the need for data storage is exploding, and SAFE will be the go to destination for that data as long as the security offered and “pay-once” model is better than offers such as the pay per GB-year. Since by definition and design it is a pay per GB-forever, there may be edge cases where competitors could offer lower cost for transient temp data that people only want to keep for a few years, but it seems that it would be rather easy for SAFE to offer lower cost/lower durability pricing such as the suggestion by @neo if the need arose.

While reading through I thought might be good to view @foreverjoyful’s arguments as a test run for the type of media inquiry and PR optics that will need to be navigated as the network becomes more mainstream. Having a detailed publication or media packet that describes how concerns such as his are easily overcome may help things progress faster… maybe this has already been done and I missed it. There will be other individuals and organizations much less tech savvy than @foreverjoyful who don’t have the same passion for ensuring SAFE’s success; they too will need to be educated/convinced about some of these details.

One question did come to mind while reading through. Perhaps this has already been answered in the forum ad nauseum and I missed the details in my read through, but I’ll ask anyhow to entice someone to help me understand the basics because I think it does pertain to farming sustainability.

  1. Considering farming rewards based on successfully retrieving a GET request, could an unequal distribution of valuable or “hot” data occur within the network? For example, some ‘old’ famers have been stable and have been storing the same stale data for a long time that nobody really has any interest in or that might only get accessed once a decade, while other farmers are providing a larger percentage of hot data that is accessed much more frequently. In other words, does the data continuously “swirl” around in order to make sure there is a random distribution of hot and cold storage to be shared among all the farmers in the network at any given time, thus ensuring a random distribution of farming reward? Is this where the constant migration of data due to caching comes in?


I believe farming is set up to be somewhat “competitive” among farmers. The ones with the fastest upload speed, most consistent “uptime” and fastest processing will reap the most rewards. Not sure if equitability is or should be the goal. Could be wrong here.

Note: This competitiveness will be mitigated to some extent by the planned “20% rule”, a cap on how much better one farming operation can be over the average measure. Everything beyond a 20% (or thereabouts) improvement over the average will be disregarded when calculating the farm rating.


When nodes leave the network, churn events occur, which cause the data to be copied to another node (if a copy threshold is reached). So, data does move about.

Vaults don’t have a choice about what they store and nor do they know what it is, so you can’t really be selective about it either. This is a good thing as it stops people hunting for hot data. Ofc, you can always rejoin the network as a fresh node again (an infant, new data chains terminology), but then you have to build reputation again, which will impact of farming rewards.

Perhaps there could be a mechanism to generate churn events, just to move stale data about. I suspect it could be added if needed, reusing exiting code.


If your reputation (farm rating) is posted you might be able to “hunt hot data” by turning off your machine after a prolonged period of low rewards, especially if you have strong reason to believe your specs should be producing more.

Restarting your machine might then result in a better “fetch” score. I am not sure what would keep a farm operator from doing this over and over until he was satisfied with the results.


It would become an infant and produce zero safecoin until it had matured. So you lose reputation and ability to earn, although you are farming or at least learning to as an infant


I suppose you would have to balance the effects of starting over for a period of time as an infant with the lack of results you are getting from your current “non-producing” vault. It is possible, isn’t it, that if you left your computer on you could get stuck with unpopular data in your vault for a long period of time? Might it then still be advisable to start over with an infant? You wouldn’t know to do this, of course, if you weren’t able to see your reputation score and reward total.


Yes, the constant searching for hot data by way of churn events was something that came to mind as a potential side effect, but the disincentive to churn due to loss of farming rewards would seem adequate for preventing this. Another concern might be from farmers getting “bored” since their vaults are full but no longer generating revenue because the data is not being accessed enough, so they would just get rid of them and leave the network permanently/indefinitely. As others have pointed out, it would seem that transaction fees (for data, not safecoin) could keep them interested. Thinking out loud for a moment… is it possible to split the total farming reward between the farmer’s vault and all other nodes that pass a data chunk to the requesting client, or is this essentially how it’s done now? It would seem that depending on the storage vs. transaction reward ratio it would help keep the vault managers/farmers motivated.

EDIT: Searching the forum I found some great discussion that was related to this topic in :


Their loss should be someone else’s gain. It will potentially create demand for more storage space, which could increase the farming reward. Obviously, we are talking small impacts by individuals, but the network as a whole will react in such a way.


“Another concern might be from farmers getting “bored” since their vaults are full but no longer generating revenue because the data is not being accessed enough, so they would just get rid of them and leave the network permanently/indefinitely.”

A worse scenario is the farmer constantly seeking a more active vault by rebooting his device after a prolonged period of inactivity in an effort to improve his returns. I know there will be a price to pay for this strategy (starting all over as an “infant”) but if his full vault is producing nothing, or close to nothing, as far as farming rewards go, he would not be losing anything by starting over. If enough farmers thought this way it could create an abnormally large volume of churn which probably would not be a good thing for the network.

What is needed to mitigate the waste of a full, non-performing vault is a “pass-through” fee. If a “fetch” goes through a node on the way to the desired data, that node (farmer) will share in the rewards with the destination farmer. This would be like an automatic toll booth along the highway. Not sure of the technical challenges of such a system but it sure makes the network more equitable for farmers.


This is not really feasible but is possible (like getting hit by lightening 100 times is possible). Data is distributed evenly across the address range so you will have parts of popular/unpopular data all in the same ratio as any other vault. At least that should be the case, it is all probabilities, but this probability is extremely high, otherwise the secure part would have to be removed from the hashing algorithm (so no SHA just HA :wink: )


Thanks for clarifying. Remarkable how often the Theory of Probability enters the picture. Btw, imho ToP is, over your lifetime, the most useful and rewarding subject anyone could study in the formative years (high school/college) no matter the specialized field. It could also be the least appreciated.


Theoretically, does this mean:

  1. If all farmers left their device running 24/7 and had exactly the same hardware and Internet specs, they would receive approximately the same reward?

  2. And since the assumptions above will not exist in real life:
    The largest increase in farming rewards above the average farming rewards will not be expected to exceed 20% (or the percentage the network settles on). Will this percentage be dynamic or will it have to be fixed at some point?


Glad to help and see the questions, it all helps :+1:


This is indicative right now, but when the algorithm becomes more concrete we will know more. I suspect the farming rewards will change over time, I fully expect these parameters though to be handled eventually by some deep learning tools. that is far away but they are better than humans at that kind of thing. Right now it will be static though IMO and possibly altered via updates as the network grows and we know more. I don’t expect too much movement though, until archive nodes come into play, then the extra resource will be used and rewarded for that as opposed to just a bigger peer in a group. The extra resource needs to be worth something to the network and archive or cross group data will be a good reason to increase rewards for the larger vaults.


To maintain incentive for those vaults to remain on, a sort of “heartbeat lottery” at a lower earn rate could be implemented to reward nodes for uptime.

It also comes at a loss to the network if too many nodes begin doing this. Increased churn, incomplete groups etc in addition to that already caused by other factors. Better to lessen the reasons one would restart their vault if it can be helped IMO.


Totally agree. Sustainability is very important indeed.


Wouldn’t this be a kind of “proof of stake”?


After reading this discussion, I thought it could be beneficial to summarize my interpretation of what I learned in a graphical form. Here it is:

It’s a chart plotting the development of hypothetical outflows and inflows of economic value into the SAFE ecosystem over time.

The all factors combined represent the sum of all costs (storage, bandwidth, CPU, labor…).
The virtual baseline represents “lifting” of the zero cost level caused by non-economic forces, like altruism, merit seeking, etc… This construct captures our intuition that people are willing to cary some economic costs without expectation of economic payback. The point in time where the all factors curve meets this baseline is the moment, where for all practical purposes all costs are zero. I called it NIRVANA.
The SAFE scenario represents the balance of the virtual SAFE network account, witch must not be below the all factors curve, if the economy is to be stable. It is calculated as a difference between the inflows and outflows of national currency into the economy. It is the national currency and not Safecoin, because all costs are also in the national currency. The points on the time line labeled S1 - S3 represent different scenarios of how the account balance might evolve. We do not know which one is going to be realized. Please note - any variants of this curve “terminating” to the right of the S2 time, would mean, that the SAFE network economy has surplus (is stable).
The usage fees scenario captures the proposal to introduce fees into the SAFE economy, to keep it stable regardless of the all factors curve shape. The green line representing this account balance evolution is lifted above the main all factors curve for clarity. It should sit right on top of it.

Do I have it right?