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The Scalability of Trustless Trust

  • Dominik HarzEmail author
  • Magnus Boman
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 10958)

Abstract

Permission-less blockchains can realise trustless trust, albeit at the cost of limiting the complexity of computation tasks. To explain the implications for scalability, we have implemented a trust model for smart contracts, described as agents in an open multi-agent system. Agent intentions are not necessarily known and autonomous agents have to be able to make decisions under risk. The ramifications of these general conditions for scalability are analysed for Ethereum and then generalised to other current and future platforms. Finally, mechanisms from the trust model are applied to a verifiable computation algorithm and implemented in the Ethereum blockchain. We show in experiments that the algorithm needs at most six semi-honest verifiers to detect false submission.

Keywords

Trustless trust Smart contract Agent Ethereum Blockchain Scalability Multi-agent system Distributed ledger 

Notes

Acknowledgement

The authors thank Babak Sadighi and Erik Rissanen for comments and discussions, and Daniel Gillblad for important support for Magnus Boman’s part of the project. Also, the authors thank Outlier Ventures Ltd. for partly funding Dominik Harz’ share of the project.

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Copyright information

© International Financial Cryptography Association 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.IC3RE, Imperial College LondonLondonUK
  2. 2.RISEKistaSweden
  3. 3.KTH/ICT/SCSKistaSweden

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