Emergent Consensus needs an explainer


Staff member
Aug 22, 2015
That would be extremely helpful. We have some source material which could be drawn from and integrated into a single explainer like you describe

◼ Zegers, A. “The Market for Consensus.” Medium. 2016 (link to article)

Bitcoin Unlimited empowers node operators to control how they enforce certain Bitcoin block validity rules on their own node. In this article, BU member Antony Zegers explores the market incentives facing node operators when they choose to enforce block validity rules, and how these incentives lead to an emergent consensus on the Bitcoin network.

◼ Swingle, J. “Bitcoin Etiquette: Choosing the Proper Fork.” Satoshi’s Vision Conference San Francisco. 2016 (link to video)

In this video, Bitcoin Unlimited member John Swingle argues that “hard forks” should generally be preferred over “soft forks” because while the former increase user and market choice, the latter undermine user and market choice by increasing the coordination cost of resisting an unpopular or controversial change. Swingle further argues that in many cases, the added constraints of making a protocol change as a soft fork necessitate the introduction of additional and inherently-dangerous complexity.

◼ Rizun, P. R. “The Excessive Block Gate: How a Bitcoin Unlimited Nodes Deals with ‘Large’ Blocks.” Medium. 2016 (link to article)

Bitcoin Unlimited’s consensus layer is concerned with preserving the money property of Bitcoin. Using simple animations, Peter Rizun explains how a BU node deals with blocks that are potentially problematic to accept for technical (non-monetary) reasons.

◼ Clifford, A., “Decentralizing the Block Size Limit.” Medium. 2016 (link to article)

Generally, a problem can rarely be solved unless it is properly recognized. Specifically, Bitcoin’s centralized maximum block size is put into historical context and a decentralized solution is presented. This article introduces emergence, which is a fundamental aspect of nature giving rise to many levels of complexity. Further, its important and long-term applicability for determining the optimum block size limit in the Bitcoin network is shown.