The Consensus Algorithm of bitcoin, Proof of Work, has long been the subject of controversy within the crypto space. PoW makes bitcoins network secure, immutable transparent and harder to hack, but for all the amiable features it provides it still gets downtrodden for the cost that is associated with it. The cost has been increasing proportionally to hash rates. Mining Bitcoin can be an arduous task that requires tons of computing machinery and entire farms to power up the mining rigs. And the more heavily equipped groups or individuals have a greater chance of unlocking blocks. This essentially incentivizes the entire system and makes it secure as well.
Recently BlockPublisher approached Sky Guo, the CEO of Cypherium, a decentralized platform that employed a rather evolved consensus mechanism, an improvement built upon Satoshi Nakamoto’s Proof Of Work, that minimizes the scalability issues. Upon inquiry, Sky Guo elaborated how as secure as PoW is, there are a number of issues that still exist within the protocol. He said:
As with all technologies, Proof-of-Work consensus mechanisms certainly have their faults. However, PoW has proven to be the only reliable consensus mechanism to date, serving as both an incentive mechanism and security measure while maintaining its decentralization.
It should be brought into consideration that PoW is extremely reliable, but there are certain issues which reared their ugly heads in the past specifically the problem of scalability. PoW is not able to cater to thousands of transactions without causing a delay. This problem has existed from the beginning, and only a few saw through it. But rather than creating a solution for this particular issue, many have resorted to creating their own consensus protocols, which does not essentially uphold the decentralization of the platform. Sky added on:
While security vulnerabilities and energy inefficiencies are still major hurdles that need to be addressed in PoW models, sacrificing decentralization to improve other technological shortcomings will only prevent the technology from making its way to mainstream.
Even Ethereum’s blockchain has had the same problem which has made them consider migrating to the Proof of Stake protocol. In addition to Ethereum making the move, there are certain other crypto projects that have not resorted to any of the above mentioned protocols rather they have incorporated an entirely different approach. pertaining to this Sky Guo told:
Rather than abandoning PoW entirely, the blockchain industry would benefit greatly from taking a more hybrid approach to its protocols. By modifying the effects of existing infrastructure, new generations of decentralized consensus can focus on improving the designs of Satoshi and Vitalik instead of starting from scratch.
Cryptocurrencies and Blockchain, being merely over a decade old, is still considered to be in stages of infancy, on which improvements can be incorporated in order to perfect the technology whilst maintaining the true essence of decentralization.