Solving the Scalability Trilemma - LiquidApps
Written by LiquidApps
Blockchains face an existential challenge known as “The Scalability Trilemma” — the inherent tension between decentralization, scalability and security. This is derived from the fact that, up until now, blockchain developers could only solve for up to two of the three problems, but not all three at the same time.
Although optimizing decentralization and security is crucial, it also means designing a system that is both hard to change and shares the maximum amount of network information with a maximum number of peer-to-peer nodes. Most blockchain networks have been designed as such, with censorship-resistance and defense against attackers in mind. Decentralization purists are extremely hesitant to make any protocol changes that would compromise the trustlessness of the network in any way.
However, by choosing to prioritize decentralization and security, these networks are sacrificing the production capacity that would allow them to service scalable applications. On the EOS blockchain, for instance, this problem is evident in the decision teams are forced to make between storing their data on a limited RAM database at the expense of scalability, or moving the data off-chain at the cost of decentralization. dApp developers have to choose between housing their smart contract information on-chain or compromising the trustlessness of their application — until now.
End-to-End Decentralization featuring The DAPP Network
In order to optimize for all of scalability, decentralization and security, blockchains must be designed to store the minimum amount of information needed to verify future transaction validity. Serving as the “EOS Hard Drive”, the vRAM System allows RAM to act as a cache layer for in-operation data only, while the data is hosted by DAPP Service Providers (DSPs) on a distributed file storage system, such as IPFS. Once it is needed for a smart contract operation, the data is loaded into a temporary cache table on EOS RAM for the duration of the transaction. In addition to living on IPFS, any data stored using vRAM is ever-present as part of the chain history and can be reconstructed by simply replaying the history of the chain. EOS remains the settlement layer which dApps interact with, meaning that dApp developers will still need to stake EOS and buy RAM in order to deploy Smart Contracts.
Have Your Cake and Eat It Too
While currently still in an experimental phase, blockchain technologies are expected to take giant strides towards functional adoption in the coming years. Once the scalability trilemma is resolved, mainstream consumers will have access to widely-adopted dApps with all the security benefits of decentralization. vRAM reduces the data load on EOS RAM, allowing dApp developers to build scalable applications that are end-to-end decentralized. Its success in its mission to unlock scalability is largely dependant on the imagination and execution of the developers, users and DSPs that comprise the DAPP Network. The talent prevalent in the DAPP ecosystem indicates a bright future for decentralized technologies.
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