Faster Than Lightning? ‘Sprite’ Paper Envisions New Bitcoin Payments

lightning, storm

Announced in early 2015, the Lightning Network, has been heralded as a promising solution to bitcoin’s scaling challenges – one that, over the past year, has been inching closer to launch.

However, a new paper has laid out the framework for another payment system that researchers claim would be even faster.

Payment channels such as those proposed by the Lightning Network are one strand of the debate over scaling bitcoin which, although it often takes the form of arguments over block size, is ultimately about the volume of transactions the network can handle in a given length of time.

Larger block size is one way to improve transaction volume, but another strategy is to conduct payments ‘off-chain’, that is, in private payment channels between two or more parties where only the final balance is broadcast back to the main blockchain.

The authors of the new paper, titled “Sprites: Payment Channels that Go Faster than Lightning“, claim that the Lightning Network’s design is “more complicated than necessary” and assert that Sprite channels can reduce the maximum transaction time taken when each link in the transaction path suffers from a worst-case delay.

Stop and go

The idea of designing for worst-case scenarios is key to the Sprite proposal, which

Read more ... source: CoinDesk

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