Pay-with-stake – No more need for consensus

The full article was originally published by Olaf van Wijk on Medium. Read the full article here.

In this article, I shortly describe a mechanism for a vote-free and consensus-free mechanism in distributed ledgers to provide instant payments. A mechanism that could be added to most ledgers.

The idea here is to provide usability (like 0 block confirmations) over privacy and security.


Consensus, the holy grail of distributed ledger technology. It is the process of ‘what to agree on’. This process kicks in when there is something to vote on. Like bitcoin having two transactions trying to spend the same money. Consensus is the mechanism that chooses, it picks. Whether it is active (voting) or passive (deterministic through random oracles).

The benefit

Consensus is often considered to be a requirement because an adversary can gain benefit from trying to influence the choice. Like getting the real world assets but having the transaction reversed because consensus chose the transaction that wasn’t related. In other words, produce a double-spend.

With these short statements I make the claim:

If there is no benefit to be gained, you don’t need consensus.

Introducing pay-with-stake.

The main idea here is that when a conflict occurs between the transaction being issued and when it confirms all tokens/coins/credits/whatever gets burned. Simply destroyed, recursively until the source transaction is credited for.

A requirement for this is that proof of ownership in the next transaction must be included in the form of a remainder address.

Read the full Article

The full article was originally published by Olaf van Wijk on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

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