Instant Transfer / Confirmation

Discussion in 'Technical Development' started by adam2312, Feb 10, 2016.

  1. 2017/12/15 - Decred v1.1.2 released! → Release Notes  → Downloads
  1. adam2312

    adam2312 Jr. Member

    Jan 11, 2016
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    With Decred, does it seem feasible, in the future, to pay for a bag of doritos at a local convenient store? I mean, is it reasonable to expect transactions/confirmations to be instant (less than a second), or does the technology somehow limit the speed?

    If the technology does limit the speed, does our governance model result in sufficient flexibility to improve the system with future changes or is it a limitation that may always exist?
     
  2. ceejep

    ceejep Sr. Member
    Developer

    Dec 14, 2015
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    It is possible to easily do instant transactions with the lightning network. The Golang implementation of the lightning network already uses a lot of code produced by Company Zero. Note that it is designed not for Bitcoin "segregated witness" but a test network with immalleable transaction IDs, which we have. We also have OP_CHECKLOCKTIMEVERIFY and comparable changes to "segregated witness" already. The only other things required for the lightning network are OP_CHECKSEQUENCEVERIFY and a couple other minor BIPs which we will soon add through soft fork.

    Whether or not you can use that for small purchases is a different question. Scalability hasn't yet been addressed by Decred and is an extremely difficulty issue.
     
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  3. adam2312

    adam2312 Jr. Member

    Jan 11, 2016
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    Thanks for the quick reply, ceejep.

    I don't immediately see a challenge in making a small purchase. Perhaps, if the value were such that a bag of doritos cost 0.000001 DCR, there may be an issue if the transaction fee were somewhere around the same amount (or much higher). Is that a possible issue? Other than that, anything else immediately obvious?

    I'm confident (though may be wrong) scalability will be addressed successfully with Decred's system of governance; this was the main attraction of the project to me. I'm just trying to get a better understanding of the potential feasibility of what I dream the day-to-day utility would be.

    Thanks for entertaining these questions.
     
  4. zsnorbi

    zsnorbi New Member

    Feb 5, 2016
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    Should we understand that decred will have instant transfers one day? ;)
     
  5. ceejep

    ceejep Sr. Member
    Developer

    Dec 14, 2015
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    Microtransactions are a difficulty problem because a hashed linked list ("blockchain") that must be maintained as an identical copy among network participants is an extremely inefficient way to preserve and distribute data. It's also poor for privacy. A different, more scalable data structure that is tethered to the blockchain would be a better idea. What this might be is still up in the air. The solution must be simple, which I have not seen anyone yet propose. The known sharding and directed acyclic graph schemes are very complex. Sidechains offset the problem to peripheral chains and have some security issues.

    Block scalability being addressed by the governance system is a short term goal. A flat blocksize is undesirable, but it should also be the case that blocks are small enough that nodes may run cheaply.
     
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  6. ceejep

    ceejep Sr. Member
    Developer

    Dec 14, 2015
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    So long as the lightning network functions correctly.
     
  7. adam2312

    adam2312 Jr. Member

    Jan 11, 2016
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    It may be early in time to ask this one, and forgive me if you've already answered the question and I missed it as it may be over my head: what about volume of transactions per unit time? Encountering this article today (https://www.technologyreview.com/s/600781/technical-roadblock-might-shatter-bitcoin-dreams/) I wonder if we already have the issue covered with Decred to handle on the order of 10,000 transactions per second? If not, is the technical infrastructure such that we will be able to fork or overhaul the code as necessary to handle that kind of volume per time?
     
    sambiohazard likes this.

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