Cointelegraph: crucial question of cryptocurrency community

Cointelegraph: crucial question of cryptocurrency community

According to Cointelegraph, SegWit activation will lead to a real revolution in the world of bitcoin. The protocol is already fixed, and in fall, the block (SegWit2x) increase is coming. It will ensure the drop of the network congestion and introduction of new improvements. However, before further bitcoin blockchain changes, the crucial long-pending question of the cryptocurrency community should be answered: “How much decentralization is enough for bitcoin?”

Block increase supporters and detractors

As far back as 2014, the community realized the need for bitcoin code changes. They were related to the network ability to scale successfully: the interest in bitcoin was growing and the network failed to function properly with its current speed (4 transactions per second). One part of the community supported larger blocks, another part chose a more technically nuanced solution that resulted in SegWit appearance. The latter implies that signatures and transaction data are split, then compressed and placed in a separate block (blockchain).

Block size and decentralization

The block size defines the number of network supporters since the bigger blocks are, the more difficult and labor consuming the node maintenance is. From this point of view, SegWit was more favorable but nobody was sure about its consequences for the network (whether it would require a soft fork or a hard fork).

All this boiled down to the question: “How much decentralization is enough for the network stable work?” According to the Cointelegraph article, such a large-scale project as bitcoin cannot bank on 100-200 nodes. However, with the network increase up to dozens of thousands of nodes, there appears distribution, not decentralization: it is difficult to make decisions in such a network.

Currently, almost 9200 nodes serve the bitcoin network. Is it enough for decentralization? Are 4000 nodes enough? 1000? According to the article authors, this is the main question to be answered by the community before introducing further improvements in the leading cryptocurrency blockchain.

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