Exciting news from MIT researchers – a new cryptocurrency has been developed which dramatically reduces the data needed in order for people to join and use a cryptocurrency network. Incredibly, the efficiencies achieved by a research team has led to a 99 percent reduction in data requirements.
Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are digital currencies that are built on top of a distributed blockchain database and as such require the sequencing and storing of data as individual blocks. Each block contains the financial records of every transaction sequenced on the blockchain. However, the very storage of an entire history of transactions can create scalability problems. For example, user’s must off and download and store all of the transaction data from hundreds of thousands of blocks.
Out of the Vault
MIT researchers have developed a new type of blockchain dubbed ‘Vault’ – a cryptocurrency which allows users to interact with the network but only requiring them to download a tiny fraction of the total transactional data. Novel proprietary techniques allow for the deletion of empty accounts which are taking up unnecessary blockchain bandwidth, allowing for the verification of the most recent transaction data to be divided in shared the network. The result is a significant net reduction in the individual’s needs to store blockchain data locally.
“Currently there are a lot of cryptocurrencies, but they’re hitting bottlenecks related to joining the system as a new user and to storage. The broad goal here is to enable cryptocurrencies to scale well for more and more users,” – says Derek Leung, a graduate student in the Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL).
In comparative experiments against Bitcoin, Vault reduced the required bandwidth for joining its network by 99% comma as well as 90% when compared to Ethereum. Impressively all nodes on the vault network validate all transactions comma contributing to total network security. By utilizing a new cryptocurrency network called Algorand, developed by Silvio Micali – the Ford Professor of Engineering at MIT, the development teams are able to take advantage of a decentralized, and most importantly, infinitely more scalable foundation than many other cryptocurrencies on the market today.
Whether this new joint venture achieves the potential and promises that it has demonstrated in its infancy remains to be seen. What is clear, however, is the exponentially increasing demand for greater efficiency within the distributed ledger technology ecosystem.