What is the relationship between the blockchain size and the transaction volume on the network?


The Bitcoin wiki page on scalability looks at what things would be like if transaction volume was similar to that of Visa. It states:

Today the Bitcoin network is restricted to a sustained rate of 7 tps by some artificial limits. These were put in place to stop people from ballooning the size of the block chain before the network and community was ready for it. Once those limits are lifted, the maximum transaction rate will go up significantly.

The page also contains various calculations on what the implications are of the Bitcoin network matching Visa's rate of transaction processing (which the page states as being around 2,000 transactions/sec). Figures on storage required for the blockchain are included in the calculations, but it's clear that as Bitcoin grows the core backend nodes will require commercial levels of investment in hardware &...

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Firing up the Thunder Network Rocket….

Today, we announced the release of the ThunderNetwork (click here to read) which has the ability to make live, nearly instant, and ultra-cheap transactions that settle back to the Bitcoin blockchain.

We’ve written about our R&D efforts before and you can read all about the details in our previous blog post. As a reminder, the ThunderNetwork is a way to send bitcoin “off-chain” to other parties in a trustless manner based on the lightning.network.

Yesterday afternoon, Mats and I made the very first payments using the Thunder network. Below is a quick tour of Thunder and a recap of what happened.

At a high level, the transaction movements looked like this:

First, we fired up both of our Thunder Network wallets and logged into our Blockchain Wallets (/shameless plug).

From there, I funded my Thunder...

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The blockchain is the new hot technology. If you haven’t heard about it, you probably know Bitcoin. Well, the blockchain is the underlying technology that powers Bitcoin. Experts say the blockchain will cause a revolution similar to what Internet provoked. But what is it really, and how can it be used to build apps today? This post is the first in a series of three, explaining the blockchain phenomenon to web developers. We’ll discuss the theory, show actual code, and share our learnings, based on a real world project.

To begin, let’s try to understand what blockchains really are.

What Is A Blockchain, Take One

Although the blockchain was created to support Bitcoin, the blockchain concept can be defined regardless of the Bitcoin ecosystem. The literature usually defines a blockchain as follows:

A blockchain is a ledger of facts, replicated across several computers assembled in a peer-to-peer network. Facts can be anything from monetary transactions to...

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Get to know this game-changing technology and IBM's contribution to it

Sloane Brakeville

and Bhargav Perepa

Published on May 09, 2016/Updated: December 15, 2016

Everyone is placing bets on how blockchain will revolutionize the way organizations conduct their business transactions. Let's look at how a blockchain network operates, what makes it unique, and how IBM is helping to advance the technology. First, a little background is in order.

The role of ledgers

In today's connected and integrated world, economic activity takes place in business networks that span national, geographic, and jurisdictional boundaries. Business networks typically come together at marketplaces where producers, consumers, suppliers, partners, market makers/enablers, and other stakeholders own, control, and exercise their rights,...

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"The practical consequence […is…] for the first time, a way for one Internet user to transfer a unique piece of digital property to another Internet user, such that the transfer is guaranteed to be safe and secure, everyone knows that the transfer has taken place, and nobody can challenge the legitimacy of the transfer. The consequences of this breakthrough are hard to overstate."

- Marc Andreessen

From a cruising altitude, a blockchain might not look that different from things you're familiar with, say Wikipedia.

With a blockchain, many people can write entries into a record of information, and a community of users can control how the record of information is amended and updated. Likewise, Wikipedia entries are not the product of a single publisher. No one person controls the information.

Descending to ground level, however, the differences that make blockchain technology unique become more clear. While both run on distributed networks (the internet),...

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(Mastering Bitcoin) Transactions are the most important part of the bitcoin system. Everything else in bitcoin is designed to ensure that transactions can be created, propagated on the network, validated, and finally added to the global ledger of transactions (the blockchain). Transactions are data structures that encode the transfer of value between participants in the bitcoin system. Each transaction is a public entry in bitcoin’s blockchain, the global double-entry bookkeeping ledger.

A transaction may have no recipient, or it may have several. The same can be said for senders! On the Blockchain, the sender and recipient are always abstracted with a ScriptPubKey, as we demonstrated in previous chapters.

If you use Bitcoin Core your Transactions tab will show the transaction, like this:

For now we are interested in the Transaction ID. In this case, it is f13dc48fb035bbf0a6e989a26b3ecb57b84f85e0836e777d6edf60d87a4a2d94

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Blockchain is being touted around the world as a disruptive technology that could revolutionize finance, trade, legal systems, digital media, and much more. But blockchain tech has one big obstacle: it’s hard to wrap your head around.

To help laymen better understand blockchain, we reached out to Bitcoin experts around the globe. We issued each of them a challenge: explain blockchain in 150 words or less. As it turns out, even they can struggle to explain blockchain in simple terms.

Blockchain tech is fairly complex, so condensing it down into a one or two paragraphs is no easy task. Comparitech took a stab at the challenge as well, but in video form. Here is our animated explanation of blockchain in less than 150 seconds.

And here are 10 explainers from our gracious experts. We’ve ordered them as best we can from simple and plainly worded to complex and thorough.

Ron Hose, founder of Coins.ph

The Blockchain is a decentralized ledger....

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The total number of unique addresses used on the Bitcoin blockchain.

The number of daily confirmed Bitcoin transactions.

Total number of transactions.

The number of Bitcoin transactions added to the mempool per second.

The number of transactions waiting to be confirmed.

The rate at which the mempool is growing per second.

The aggregate size of transactions waiting to be confirmed.

Breakdown of the mempool by fee level

The number of unspent Bitcoin transactions outputs (UTXO set size).

The total number of Bitcoin transactions, excluding the 100 most popular addresses.

The total number of Bitcoin transactions per day excluding long transaction chains.

The total value of all transaction outputs per day.

The total estimated value of transactions on the Bitcoin blockchain.

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Writer, reporter, and film producer Jim Epstein talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about mining Bitcoins in Venezuela as a way to import food. Venezuela is a tragicomic example of how policy can lead to strange and presumably unexpected outcomes. Epstein also discusses how Bitcoin is being used elsewhere in Latin America and the potential for the blockchain technology to lower the costs of owning and transferring property.

Right-click or Option-click, and select "Save Link/Target As MP3.

Readings and Links related to this podcast episode


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Every watt used for anything, fans, TVs, and in particular computers, makes the furnace run one watt less. Everything except light that escapes out the window turns into heat at a watt for watt basis.

So the furnace is only special in that it does nothing...

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