Outcompeting Blockchains: using a global store to replace lengthy chain histories

Karl gmkarl at gmail.com
Sun May 24 05:33:53 PDT 2020

I got a question on how one can "outcompete" without focusing on financial
return: an example of the pattern I describe is wikipedia, which has
replaced most search results on the internet but has no profit.  If your
benefit is strong enough you can eventually replace an industry entirely:
cloud storage instead of encyclopedias.

Note the proposed idea is vulnerable to malicious crucial data change a
little more than a blockchain (even if the protocol rejects it, system
compromises could alter what is expected), which could be patched by some
clients plugging into a blockchain to produce proofs-of-existence for now.

On Sun, May 24, 2020, 7:25 AM Karl <gmkarl at gmail.com> wrote:

> This is just a small part of outcompeting blockchains, but it's a big one
> to me.  (I'm using here the survival trait of sustaining everyone else
> giving you community support, to plan the outcompetition.)
> If people got together and made a globally usable filesystem using
> something like ceph, lizardfs, tahoe-lafs ... we could together replace the
> role of storage history in blockchains.  This would help soften the global
> shock around them, letting more people run nodes and making fewer people
> need to.
> You'd want to make a small patch to the system preventing deletion of
> important stuff.  Siacoin (which I only remember because I use their web
> interface) actually has enough storage to back thousands of terabytes on
> FUSE for reasonable cost if we wanted to preserve everything entirely.   I
> would let anybody mark something crucial with some kind of rudimentary spam
> detection (e.g. low entropy in file, only so much data from single source)
> to start with, and not let crucial things be deleted by anyone.  The open
> source community that would sprout as usage grew could handle the spam
> detection breaking.
> You'd shift your sense of security such that the ability to write to the
> filesystem is shared publicly and directly, via e.g. a public private-key.
> Once it got going, storage-based chains like storj and siacoin would pay
> such a network for providing storage.
> Any thoughts?
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