New Insights About SDK from Iker, Cryptographer at Lisk
Recently, Iker Alustiza, cryptographer at Lisk, provided some interesting details regarding the Lisk SDK and the issue of inter-blockchain communication. He answered some questions posted by Lichuan user and thepool user.
The first user expressed doubts regarding inter-blockchain communication, stating that in his opinion it is not possible to securely transfer assets between the sidechain and the mainchain. He argued that insecurity is due to the fact that the two chains depend on each other and that, furthermore, since the Lisk Consensus algorithm is DPOS and not POW, it is not possible to demonstrate if a transaction is on the mainchain or on the sidechain.
A first answer came from Karek aka thepool. He stated that there are a couple of solutions that can be discussed and that the POW algorithm is perfect for those coins that aim to be a store of value, but it is not not very suitable for dApps. In fact, POW has proven to be quite problematic for dApps on ETH.
Later, the Lightcurve cryptographer Iker supported Karek’s response regarding Lichuan’s post, calling it comprehensive. Furthermore, he added that the problem of inter-blockchain communication is much more complex than Karek managed to explain, as he considered only an ideally perfect trustless configuration. Considering the state of the art of this concept, on the other hand, we immediately notice that there is a variety of solutions with different security assumptions and trust levels.
Subsequently, Iker responded to other interesting Karek’s questions regarding the Alpha version of the SDK.
Iker explained that, as also Rachel Black stated, the alpha SDK will not have anything close to cross-blockchain communication or similar concept. Although, this is still an open topic of research and it is one of the most interesting challenges of the coming months for him and the other members of the Science Team (in this regard you can read this article). Moreover, he explained that this is not a problem that only concerns Lisk, but also the blockchain in general. Whereas, in fact, the trusted and centralized approach is already solved, the trustless and scalable solution is still an open problem (as Lichuan tried to say in his post), even if there are some proposals, not yet released.
To give an idea of the research they are pursuing on the subject, Iker explained that lately they are studying different data structures to create efficient proofs to be included in the destination blockchain from the origin blockchain.
Iker then added that if the challenge of a trustless and scalable solution turns out to be too complicated, initially they will provide a simpler solution for the first version of the production SDK and then they will continue to work on it until a final solution is found.
Iker concluded by saying that the main point concerns the definition of a “secure and scalable inter-blockchain communication protocol for the Lisk ecosystem”. It will be the sidechain developer to comply with them and make it compatible with the Lisk ecosystem.