Cryptocurrency and Blockchain News Headline Updated on 18 July 2020 – Block Size, Hard Fork, Block Reward, PoI, PoW, PoS, DPoS, dBFT, and more

The headline on 18 July 2020

What does Block Size mean?
Block size in bitcoin refers to the size of a block of code representing a recent chain of bitcoin transactions. At a given point, a bitcoin block is added to other blocks to form a continuous chain, which facilitates the authentication of bitcoin transactions.

The current bitcoin block size is capped at 1 MB. To date, a flurry of new proposals, protocol rollouts, and debates have challenged the idea of keeping the block size at 1 MB, and floated the idea of upping the block size limit to 2 MB or above. A protocol called “Segregated Witness” or SegWit may eventually lead to block size increases. However, any block size increase would necessitate a “hard fork” or forced split in the bitcoin chain, which would break off a new cryptocurrency setup to be strictly delineated by its own participating community of users, miners and developers.

What does Hard Fork mean?
A hard fork is a phenomenon in which a change forces certain divergences in the blockchain, as a result of miner or user activity or a change in rules. A hard fork does not resolve automatically according to user trends. There is widespread consensus that the emergence of Bitcoin Cash as an alternative to Bitcoin Classic was a hard fork – one good definition of a hard fork posted on forums is that in a hard fork, “node consensus diverges permanently” – for example, as a result of Bitcoin Cash, there are now two distinct bitcoin models that are completely separate, leading to the characterization of the change as a hard fork. By contrast, items like the implementation of Segregated Witness are generally called soft forks as they are more backwards-compatible.

What does Proof of Stake mean?
Proof of stake (PoS) is a method for cryptocurrency verification through distributed consensus. In a Proof of Stake system, stakeholders are chosen as creators of a block through analyzing criteria combined with randomization.

The general idea of Proof of Stake is meant to provide an algorithm that equalizes probability for figuring out a selection process for block creators. Some additional elements include delegated proof of stake protocols that use various nodes, and randomized proof of stake which, again, uses the principle of randomization.

What does Proof of Work mean?
Proof of Work (PoW) validate coin transaction status and asset management. Miners will use Proof of Work systems to show verification. For example, Bitcoin uses a hashcash proof of work system.

To understand Proof of Work, think about using a mining task as verification for a block. The system is able to validate coin asset creation by taking in input showing the mining process. One of the downsides of Proof of Work is energy-intensive to produce. Partly for that reason, engineers have been contemplating other types of methods for verifying transactions, such as Proof of Stake, which shows various forms of ownership, and Proof of Importance, which takes various metrics to substantiate transaction or asset status.

What does Block Reward mean?
The bitcoin block reward is a particular rule for the bitcoin cryptocurrency as a way to control circulation and dictates what amount miners get for mining bitcoin. Miners get bitcoin rewards by successfully mining a bitcoin block in the blockchain system. The miner claims the reward by adding it to the beginning of the block. At the time that bitcoin started, the bitcoin block reward was worth 50 bitcoin. Due to a principle of reward halving every 210,000 blocks, the value has gone down since then, and will eventually reach zero. Block rewards are the only way that new bitcoins can be created, and therefore, are essential to sustaining the bitcoin economy.

What does Proof of Importance (PoI) mean?
Proof of Importance (PoI) is a cryptocurrency term defined as blockchain consensus technique works to prove the utility of nodes in a cryptocurrency system, so that they can create blocks.

In some ways, the PoI mechanism is similar to the Proof of Stake, but PoI uses other various metrics in order to evaluate nodes including net transfers, amount of vested currency, and activity clusters – in one sense, the development of PoI is intended to address loopholes and problems with Proof of Stake where hoarding or other behaviour could result in a higher proof of stake score, but the Proof of Importance score with its more sophisticated measurements seeks to find better outcomes.

What does Delegated Byzantine Fault Tolerance (dBFT) mean?
Delegated Byzantine Fault Tolerance (dBFT), sophisticated algorithm to facilitate consensus on a blockchain, dBFT represents an alternative to simpler proof of importance, proof of stake, and proof of work methods.

The story of this as-of-yet theoretical algorithm is fascinating – it’s meant to handle a selected old-school game theory problem called the Byzantine generals’ problem. During this scenario, there are a variety of generals formulating a concept to attack a city. Consensus must be met since anything but a consensus results in significant battle failures. However, there are communication difficulties, and there’s an extra concern – within the Byzantine generals’ problem, planners should look out for individual treacherous actors – actors who might not even report the identical decision to all involved parties.

In the blockchain world, this is often explained by commenting that while some node operators are professionals, but others are amateurs with a less sophisticated view of markets and game theory and everything else. They can not be counted on, so this is often the complex issue that Delegated Byzantine Fault Tolerance addresses. Delegated Byzantine Fault Tolerance uses a two-thirds rule and other elements to make sure that consensus is achieved even with plenty of unknowns in order to handle this uncertainty.

What does Delegated Proof of Stake (DPoS) mean?
Delegated proof of stake (DPoS) refers to verification and consensus mechanism within the blockchain. It competes with other proof of stake and proof of work models to verify transactions and promote blockchain organization.

In a DPoS system, stakeholders build consensus according to their amount of stake in a cryptocurrency system. Experts comment that some of the values of delegated proof of stake are scalability and speed, which are the advantage of streamlining of digital transactions. However, security and problem with inequity come up around the concept that delegated proof of stake tends to centralize decision-making within the hands of the richest few in a given cryptocurrency market. Some worry that a delegated proof of stake model will lead to larger stakeholders forming cartels, which might cause multiple kinds of bad market actions.