[Cryptography] Digital currencies

Jeff Burdges burdges at gnunet.org
Mon Jun 20 11:36:16 EDT 2016

On Mon, 2016-06-20 at 07:25 +0100, Howard Chu wrote:
> Blockchains as currently envisioned would never scale anyway.
> It's not like any of this is a newly discovered problem of
> distributed computing. The only way to make any system scale
> is to leverage locality.  
> Broadcasting all txs and blocks globally across the entire
> network/blockchain is inherently a non-starter. A system
> designed to work with global broadcasting is doomed from the
> start. You need a system designed with segmentation and
> partitioning built in.

This is also true.  

You might still imagine a social hierarchy where a vanishingly small
minority of powerful banks and ultra-rich individuals do their financial
transactions in the real BitCoin ledger, and everyone else uses some
sort of off-blockchain transaction systems like side chains or Taler or
whatever.  I'd expect a bitcoin style proof-of-work cannot handle even
this scenario though, as attacks on the proof-of-work component remain
easy compared to breaking other forms of security. 

Ignoring blockchains, there are still scenarios where one might wish
wish to add some third parties to a transaction who were selected in a
weakly random way.  Proof-of-social-good schemes like filecoin or
proof-of-onion-routing do seemingly make this much easier. 


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