Ethereum Wants But Can’t Use Bitcoin Cash for Scaling, Dash Calls

Vitalik Buterin’s has suggested using the Bitcoin Cash (BCH) blockchain as a short-term scalable data layer solution for Ethereum. In his writing on an Ethereum research forum, the Ethereum lead cites BCH’s high data throughput (32 MB per 600 sec = 53333 bytes per sec) and very low fees as factors that make the network a perfect fit.

“We already have all the machinery we need to verify Bitcoin Cash blocks inside of Ethereum…” he says, “we just need to repoint it to the BCH chain and turn it back on… The BCH community seems to be friendly to people using their chain for whatever they want as long as they pay the tx fees.”

The BCH option is proposed as a stop-gap solution till Ethereum’s staking/sharding software is up and running. Ethereum 2.0’s planned 10 MB/sec data throughput, which is higher than that of any existing blockchain, will serve in the long term but still a year away. Its Proof of Stake switch is slated for early 2020 while the first phase of sharding (without contract execution) would likely happen late 2020, and contract execution on shards in 2021.

Buterin had once declared BCH as underrated particularly for its getting the Schnorr signature before Bitcoin (BTC).

Ethereum’s obstacle to using BCH

Buterin’s suggestion is a throwing of ideas around to seek deeper inputs. Nevertheless, the BCH network has a main weakness that kicks against Ethereum’s outlook: its 10 minute block time.

“This seems unlikely to change unfortunately,” Buterin writes. “However, there is active interest in the BCH community on strengthening zero-confirmation payments using techniques like Avalanche pre-consensus. If these techniques become robust for the use case of preventing double-spends, we could piggy back off of them to achieve shorter finality times as follows.”

Dash calls Ethereum 

Based on the BCH block time perceived obstacle, there have been calls from within the Dash community to look in their direction since they boast of having all what makes BCH the network of choice for Buterin. In addition, they claim a 2.5 mins block time and having already implemented secure 0-conf transactions (InstantSend).

Dash’s paid nodes are touted as supportive of scaling up to around six million transactions per day at fees no higher than $0.01 (as its masternodes have already voted to keep the fees). Its chainlocks can prevent 51% attacks as it requires not only to have 51% hashrate but also 20-25% of the total coin supply in active masternodes. However, Dash does not implement smart contracts but data contracts in its next major release.

Hey @VitalikButerin why not use $Dash? Instantly-confirmed, instantly-respendable transactions, more secure network than BCH thanks to ChainLocks. Seems much closer to what you're looking for and works today, not just maybe in the future.

— Joel Valenzuela (@TheDesertLynx) July 16, 2019

Arguments over using another blockchain 

While some think using the secure Layer 1 of another blockchain as its Layer 2 is a clever idea, others submit that the proposed plan will come out good for BCH than for Ethereum. The main argument is that for Ethereum to scale worse than a fork of Bitcoin as a platform written from the ground up, it doesn’t speak well of Ethereum’s development process in the last few years.

Ethereum has always aimed to be the main global settlement layer but has been limited by its network ‘s scalability trilemma – overcome the hurdle of achieving true scalability, security, and decentralization simultaneously – which the CEO of IOST blockchain, Jimmy Zhong says has to be overcome before Ethereum scalability’s can be achieved.

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