Lightning Test Moves Bitcoin Scaling Into Striking Distance

By September 29, 2016Bitcoin Business

A lesser-known startup has successfully tested an important piece of bitcoin’s scaling puzzle. Widely considered to be the best way to boost bitcoin’s transaction capacity, the Lightning Network proposes a way to execute the majority of bitcoin transactions without involving the blockchain or compromising the network’s decentralized architecture. But, as a relatively new proposal, it’s still very much a work in progress. That’s one reason why recent tests completed by a French company called Acinq have generated so much excitement. Inspired by a white paper released by bitcoin mining firm Bitfury in July, the Acinq team launched 2,500 Amazon Web Service nodes this month as a way to test a proposed routing system for Lightning-style payments earlier this month. Conducted on 18th September, the test put the routing theory proposed in the white paper into practice. As it showed Lightning nodes could effectively route payments, Bitfury CEO Valery Vavilov argued that the test was a significant milestone for bitcoin. Vavilov told CoinDesk: "This test of Flare, with small modifications made by the Acinq team, shows that our solution for payment routing on the Lightning Network is not only theoretically feasible, but successful." For now, this puts to rest skepticism that Lightning routing was too difficult to be implemented at all, as Acinq’s routing tests pushed the idea out of theory and into practice. "We thought it would interesting to go beyond with a simulation because it showed that actual progress with routing issues and [that] we’re getting closer and closer to a working implementation," Padiou said. As the implementation assumes privacy, it also hints that the Lightning Network could succeed in keeping payments private , despite the fact that it effectively adds multiple new parties to bitcoin transactions in an effort to keep them off-chain. Proposed by developers Joseph […]

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