Home Blockchain From Block-based to Blockless: A Paradigm Shift Towards Blockchain Interoperability – IEEE Blockchain Initiative

From Block-based to Blockless: A Paradigm Shift Towards Blockchain Interoperability – IEEE Blockchain Initiative

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Jiang Xiao; Xiaohai Dai; Hai Jin, College of Pc Science and Expertise, Huazhong College of Science and Expertise, China

IEEE Blockchain Technical Briefs, March 2019

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Background of Blockchain Interoperability

Right now, a brand-new age of ‘Net 3.0 period’ —sharing and unleashing the Web of worth—has begun. Blockchain know-how holds the promise of being the belief machine in ‘Net 3.0 period’. It’s foreseeable that there shall be a major variety of blockchain programs launched to disrupt all sectors of our life, reminiscent of Bitcoin [1], Ethereum [2], IOTA [3], Swarm [4], and so forth. On this gentle, ‘blockchain interoperability’ [5] is perceived because the distinguished attribute of facilitating the interactions amongst completely different blockchains (i.e., heterogenous or homogeneous) to empower the longer term ecosystem. A broad vary of eventualities for exploring such interoperability embody switch of cross-chain digital belongings, suggestion of digital forex, synergy of distributed storage, real-time cross-chain liquidation, id authentication of customers with a number of roles, cross-chain information share, cross-chain certification and so forth.

Mainstream blockchain programs have lengthy confronted the problem of designing an information construction as a elementary primitive of interoperability. Whereas many programs make use of `block-based’ construction to allow cross-chain interplay, the deficiencies of the advanced nesting of knowledge, repeated community transmission and redundant information storage [6] [7] render it unable to realize excessive effectivity. To be particular, because the transactions are packaged within the format of blocks, the supply chain has to parse a block into a number of transactions earlier than acquiring the required transaction. The method of parsing the blocks introduces additional overhead. Apart from, a chunk of legitimate information shall be broadcast twice. On the first time, the information is broadcast as a transaction. On the second time, the identical information is packaged in a block to be broadcast once more, which incurs repeated community transmission. Additional nonetheless, as blocks in numerous chains can’t be shared instantly in nature, information are saved redundantly. As a consequence, every chain is certain to be an remoted island, which can lower the vitality of blockchain neighborhood, and hinder the additional growth of blockchain ecosystem.

Design Rules In direction of a New Storage Paradigm

It’s pressing to design a brand new storage paradigm that goals to supply a versatile, safe and scalable blockchain infrastructure for interoperability. We hereby introduce the first ideas as follows:

  • Unified Transaction Format: The unified transaction format cannot solely scale back the information storage, but additionally decrease the design problem of inter-chain consensus. Moreover, if completely different chains are deployed in the identical community house, every unified transaction solely must be broadcast as soon as, thereby lowering the community overhead.
  • Parallelizable Extension: The transactions needs to be appended to the blockchain in parallel, thus selling each the efficiencies of a single chain and interoperability. For instance, an information construction of directed community could also be used to exchange the unique chain. Apart from, the method of packaging the transactions right into a block is sequential, which contradicts the precept of parallelization extension. Therefore, it’s fascinating to design a brand new information format as an alternative of the block-base ones.
  • Environment friendly Knowledge Question: Knowledge question is frequent within the state of affairs of interoperability, reminiscent of {that a} chain must verify if a transaction has been dedicated in one other chain. In conventional block-based format, the transactions must be packaged right into a block earlier than dedicated and unpackaged afterwards to be learn, which will increase the question overhead largely. Because of this, the information could also be organized within the format of transactions instantly, in order to keep away from the overhead in packaging and unpackaging the blocks. Moreover, information within the format of transactions might be parsed right into a relational database simply, thus facilitating the information evaluation of blockchain.

Total Design of Vine

We suggest Vine (Veritable Interoperability for Next-generation Blockchain Ecosystem), a novel block-less answer to help environment friendly and safe interactions amongst interdependent blockchains. The instinct is strongly impressed by DAG (Directed Acyclic Graph) that removes the block construction and organizes the information within the format of transactions instantly [8]. In comparison with block-less blockchain programs, DAG-enabled blockless system can present increased effectivity. An in depth comparability between block-based and DAG-enabled blockless blockchain programs is concluded in Desk 1. Totally different from the prevailing DAG-enabled tasks [3][9][10], which solely give attention to a single chain, Vine is the primary answer to use DAG to the state of affairs of interoperability. Aside from DAG, Vine additional unifies the transaction format of various chains and permits completely different chains to share the underlying community house, thus lowering the community and storage overhead largely.

Table 1

Desk 1. Comparability of block-based and DAG-enabled blockless blockchain programs

Determine 1 illustrates the schematic diagram of Vine. Three chains, specifically token chain, provide chain and finance chain, are painted in yellow, blue and pink colours respectively. To share the transactions among the many three chains, information layer and community layer are related collectively. Every transaction is represented by a rectangle within the information layer. To mark which chain is concerned about a transaction, the transaction is painted with the colour of the corresponding chain. For instance, the transaction labeled with quantity ‘1’ solely belongs to the token chain, whereas the transaction labeled with quantity ‘2’ solely belongs to the provision chain. As inexperienced is a mixture of yellow and blue, transactions painted in inexperienced belong to each token chain and provide chain, e.g., transaction labeled with quantity ‘3’. Equally, transactions painted in black represents the entire three chains within the transactions.

The unified information construction primarily based on DAG can successfully scale back the overheads and lift the effectivity when it comes to blockchain interoperability. To be particular, technique of block parsing is eliminated as a consequence of blockless construction, in order to keep away from the overhead in parsing the blocks. As well as, deploying completely different chains in the identical community house instantly can keep away from the repeated broadcast of the identical transactions. What’s extra, as information is saved within the format of transactions, the identical transaction in numerous chains might be shared simply.


Blockchain, the groundbreaking know-how behind Bitcoin and Ethereum is gaining rising consideration and experiencing a lift of world adoption. By constructing upon the novel ‘blockless’ storage paradigm, the large interdepend functions shall be sprout up and promoted within the next-generation blockchain ecosystem.

Figure 1

Determine 1. Schematic diagram of Vine


[1] Nakamoto, “Bitcoin: A peer-to-peer digital money system,” 2008.

[2] “Ethereum,” nftgamef.com/.

[3] Serguei, “The tangle,” 2016.

[4] Swarm, nftgamef.com/ethersphere/swarm/wiki/roadmap

[5] Jin, X. Dai, and J. Xiao, “In direction of a Novel Structure for Enabling Interoperability amongst A number of Blockchains,” in Proceedings of the 2018 IEEE thirty eighth Worldwide Convention on Distributed Computing Techniques (ICDCS). IEEE, 2018, pp. 1203-1211.

[6] “Btcrelay,” nftgamef.com/

[7] “Rootstock,” nftgamef.com/

[8] D. Lerner, “DagCoin: a cryptocurrency with out blocks,” 2015.

[9] Anton, “Byteball: A decentralized system for storage and switch of worth,” 2016.

[9] Colin, “Raiblocks: A feeless distributed cryptocurrency community.”, 2015.

[10] “Litecoin”, nftgamef.com/index.php/Main_Page

Dr. Jiang Xiao is at present an affiliate professor within the College of Pc Science and Expertise at Huazhong College of Science and Expertise (HUST), Wuhan, China. Jiang acquired the BSc diploma from HUST in 2009 and the Ph.D. diploma from Hong Kong College of Science and Expertise (HKUST) in 2014. She has been engaged in analysis on blockchain, distributed computing, massive information evaluation and administration, and wi-fi indoor localization. Awards embody Hubei Dawnlight Program 2018, CCF-Intel Younger College Analysis Program 2017, and Greatest Paper Awards from IEEE ICPADS/GLOBECOM 2012.

Xiaohai Dai acquired the M.S. diploma within the College of Pc Science and Expertise from Huazhong College of Science and Expertise (HUST), Wuhan, China, in 2017. He’s at present pursuing the Ph.D. diploma in College of Pc Science and Expertise from HUST. His present analysis pursuits embody blockchain and distributed system.

Hai Jin is a Cheung Kung Students Chair Professor of laptop science and engineering at Huazhong College of Science and Expertise (HUST) in China. Jin acquired his Ph.D. in laptop engineering from HUST in 1994. In 1996, he was awarded a German Tutorial Change Service fellowship to go to the Technical College of Chemnitz in Germany. Jin labored at The College of Hong Kong between 1998 and 2000, and as a visiting scholar on the College of Southern California between 1999 and 2000. He was awarded the Wonderful Youth Award from the Nationwide Science Basis of China in 2001. Jin is the chief scientist of ChinaGrid, the biggest grid computing undertaking in China, and the chief scientist of Nationwide 973 Fundamental Analysis Program Challenge of Virtualization Expertise of Computing System, and Cloud Safety. Jin is a fellow of the IEEE and a member of the ACM. He has co-authored 15 books and printed over 700 analysis papers. His analysis pursuits embody laptop structure, virtualization know-how, cluster computing and cloud computing, peer-to-peer computing, community storage, and community safety.


Dr. Ammar Rayes (IEEE Senior Member) is a Distinguished Engineer at Cisco’s Superior Companies Expertise Workplace specializing in Community Analytics, IoT and Machine Studying. He has authored three books, over 100 publications in refereed journals and conferences on advances in software program & networking associated applied sciences and over 25 patents. He’s the Founding President of nftgamef.com , Editor-in-Chief of “Advances of IoT” Journal and served as a Visitor Editor of a number of journals and IEEE Communication Magazines.

He acquired his BS and MS Levels in EE from the College of Illinois at Urbana and his Ph.D. diploma in EE from Washington College in St. Louis, Missouri.

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