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Now that the Bitcoin Scaling conference has ended what is the way forward?

Mon Dec 07, 2015 12:41 pm

The much-hyped Bitcoin Scaling conference is over.

Devs, mining pool owners, speakers will go home. Those of us who didn't attend will catch up on talks that we missed when we couldn't pay attention to the streaming.

But for the BTC bitcoin scaling debate. . how has it evolved since a few days ago before the conference? What is the way forward? What will different actors do in the next few weeks to resolve this drama/debate?
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Re: Now that the Bitcoin Scaling conference has ended what is the way forward?

Mon Dec 07, 2015 2:31 pm

I'm not sure what "consensus" came out of it, but there was a lot of heads turning when Segregated Witness was submitted as a proposal to increasing the blocksize using a soft fork. I don't technically fully understand it (over my head), so I'm just going to post some comments from others that have tried explaining it below. I'm not sure if this is the way forward or not, but many people are excited about it (not sure if rightfully so or not yet though).
Basically, all scriptPks (output scripts) become something like [hash] OP_TRUE inside the block and when another tx references them as an input the true scriptSig is stored outside the block, and a hash of all the block's signature data is stored somewhere within the block. Blocks are transmitted with their extra data, and inside the block all the signatures are blank.

edit: If I've helped you understand a bit better, please upvote my post here too (they're np, if you want to upvote you need to remove that). ... of/cxptrr9
The original implementation of segregated witness was also CryptoNote coins, as I mention here. Wuille's presentation fails to credit this alternative cryptocurrency at all (as did the Elements sidechains presentations/implementation/notes). Ironically the second time a major Bitcoin soft fork has come from an alt. ... of/cxpxi5t
It makes fraud proofs easier, which is ultimately one of the most promising scaling strategies: Not everybody checks the whole blockchain, but assuming someone is checking every part of it, and you are able to receive communications from that someone, you're almost as secure as if you were.

It reduces the amount of data you need to download in some circumstances
To the extent that it's adopted, it moves the content of blocks out of the jurisdiction of the 1MB limit, which is equivalent to raising the limit, but by doing it non-explicitly it avoids setting a precedent, and by using a soft fork it works around the extreme consensus requirements some people have tried to set up for hard forks.

It's an amazing political solution with something in it for all the most opposed people: Malleability fixes are need for Lightening, separating signatures allows /u/nullc to oppose future block size increases without dynamiting his own (very cool) Confidential Transactions work which has bigger signatures, and it should be easy to persuade /u/luke-jr not to make a big voting war like he did over p2sh since the soft fork technique was his idea.
Basically the same as BIP16/P2SH, except you put the signature data outside of the transaction and merge-mine those commitments.
Sources: ... k_a_block/ ... _day_2_of/

Edit: now with video too, by Pieter Wuille explaining SW (starts @ 36m)

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Re: Now that the Bitcoin Scaling conference has ended what is the way forward?

Mon Dec 07, 2015 5:42 pm

there will be no decision in the next weeks. the idea of the Bitcoin Scaling conference was that people talk about different options and BIPs to scale bitcoin.

99% of all people want bigger blocks. how big and when is the question.

i guess we will see a solution in the next 3-6 months.

Jeff Garzik did a good summary of all BIPs:

switch to 3:52:46
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Re: Now that the Bitcoin Scaling conference has ended what is the way forward?

Mon Dec 07, 2015 7:08 pm

For me, one of the most interesting parts of the conference, other than seeing OKcoin in person for the first time since their shenanigans, was that all the miners, representing more than 90% of all Bitcoin hashing power, all came together and agreed on the panel that the block size should be raised. The only question was by how much. They also seemed eager to defer to the devs to write the code for bigger blocks so they could implement it. That seems a lot closer to consensus than we have ever been on this subject.
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Re: Now that the Bitcoin Scaling conference has ended what is the way forward?

Mon Dec 07, 2015 8:25 pm

I got the impression that some kind of consensus around implementing segwit had been achieved, but that might have just been what theymos wanted r/bitcoin to represent. |

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