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"Quark is a crypto-currency that allows online coin transactions. Quark uses nine rounds of secure hashing from six different algorithms to encode Quark transactions securely."

Quark Coin logo
Date introduced: 21 July 2013
Inflation ~ 0.5% p.a inflation[1]

Quark Coin or Quark (code: QRK) is a peer-to-peer cryptocurrency that implements multiple rounds of hashing to make it more secure against cryptographic attacks while enabling CPU mining at the same time. It was conceived by developer Max Guevara in July 2013.[1]

Quark implements 9 rounds of hashing from 6 hashing functions (BLAKE, Blue Midnight Wish[2], Grøstl, JH, Keccak or SHA-3 and Skein). Quark was inspired by Bitcoin, and it shares much of the source code and technical implementation of Bitcoin.

As of 19 December 2013, Quark is the fourth largest cryptocurrency by market capitalization, with a total market cap of US$ 27,614,712.[3]

Distinguishing Features

  • Different proof-of-work system: Bitcoin's proof-of-work system is Hashcash,[4] which utilizes the SHA-256 secure hash algorithm. Bitcoin uses the Hashcash algorithm to mine new Bitcoins, and to make Bitcoins prohibitively expensive to counterfeit.[5] Bitcoin's use of SHA-256 presents a single point of failure. If SHA-256 is cracked, then the whole system may come to a halt due to the possibility of double-spending.[4] Quark claims to solve this issue by using 6 different hashing algorithms for its proof-of-work. In case one of these algorithms is cracked, the system will still be resilient, according to the currency's author.[6]
  • Faster block generation time: The Bitcoin protocol aims for a target rate of creating 1 new block every 10 minutes.[4] In contrast, The Quark protocol's target rate is 1 new block every 30 seconds.[6]
  • Faster transaction confirmations: Since Quark blocks are generated 20 times as fast as Bitcoin blocks on average, Quark transactions are confirmed approximately 20 times as fast.[6]
  • Smoother but limited difficulty adjustment: The Bitcoin protocol adjusts its difficulty every 2016 blocks (approximately 2 weeks) to achieve its the target rate of 1 block per 10 minutes.[6] In contrast, the Quark protocol adjusts its difficulty every 20 blocks (maximum 10% up or 50% down).[1]
  • Faster Exponentially decaying block reward: Compared to Bitcoin, most of the Quarks were distributed within the first few weeks, as distribution began at 2048 QRK per block for three weeks, then 1024 for three weeks, and so on. Ultimately, the block reward will reach 1 QRK per block after about seven months but never fall below that level.[1][6]

Proof-of-work system

The Proof of work system consists of six algorithms, (BLAKE, Blue Midnight Wish[2], Grøstl, JH, Keccak or SHA-3 and Skein). The six algorithms are implemented in series, with nine steps; three of the steps randomly apply one of two out of these six functions depending on the value of a bit. This is intended to counter the possible cracking of a single algorithm as well as to make it more difficult for GPU and ASIC miners to mine faster in an unfair manner as compared to CPU miners.[6]


Quark has been criticized by some in the crypto currency community for distributing most of its coins within the first few weeks of release, otherwise known as "pre-mining" or "insta-mining".[7] However, according to Quark proponents, this is to ensure that the supply of Quarks remains more stable in the near term, leading to a more stable inflationary currency model.[8] Some popular media figures in the crypto currency community, such as Max Keiser and Bill Still have become firm proponents of Quark, with a belief that the multiple encryption scheme of the currency serves as a privacy protection mechanism against spying by intelligence agencies such as the NSA.[9]

Cryptocurrency exchanges

Quark can be bought and sold on several online cryptocurrency exchanges for Bitcoins and Litecoins.


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  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Nakamoto, S. (2008). Bitcoin: A peer-to-peer electronic cash system. Retrieved from http://bitcoin.org/bitcoin.pdf
  5. Back, A. (n.d.). Hashcash. Retrieved from http://www.hashcash.org/ 7/29/2013.
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See also


External links


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