Blockchain Gets Lean and Accessible

This article was first published on RChain Cooperative - Medium
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Last Finalized State Implementation

RChain, a blockchain consumer cooperative based in Seattle, Washington, recently achieved a technical milestone with the implementation of Last Finalized State (LFS).

What exactly is LFS?

Let’s break it down.

The genesis block is the first block of any blockchain. The RChain genesis block, for instance, was created on February 24th, 2020 with the launch of main-net. Since that time new blocks have been created, one on top of each other, building the blockchain. The first epoch of 250,000 blocks was completed in June 2020. The second epoch of 250,000 blocks finished in September 2020. As a result of this constant growth and expansion of the chain of blocks, it has become increasingly more difficult for node validators to set up a node and become an exact mirror image of all other nodes on the network. This process of updating to be identical to other nodes is commonly referred to as achieving current state.

With LFS new node validators can quickly arrive at the current state.

How is this possible?

With LFS RChain can now remove the blocks from the blockchain (for instance, a group of 250,000 blocks) which in turn lightens the blockchain. Having far fewer blocks to process for update creates greater efficiency which allows new node validators to quickly arrive at the current state. Any valid finalized block can serve as a genesis block for a fresh node validator as a starting point for LFS. The finalized block is validated by a majority of validators (by Casper consensus rules) and its child blocks cannot change this fact.

Another way to think of LFS is that it is a pointer to ‘the basis sufficient for required proof’ which keeps moving forward as blocks are created. LFS requires you to go back only a few blocks, rather than all the way ...

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RChain Cooperative - Medium

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