Although the concept of blockchain existed before Bitcoin was created by Dr Craig S. Wright aka Satoshi Nakamoto in 2009, the world-famous Bitcoin white paper provided the first workable implementation thereof. In this article, we describe blockchain as a fundamental part of the peer-to-peer cash system as prescribed by Satoshi Nakamoto.
The term blockchain infrastructure can be used ambiguously. On the one hand, it can refer to the infrastructure that powers a blockchain. On the other hand, it can be used in the context of developers using blockchain as infrastructure for running their applications on top of.
Since both areas have connecting points that merge well with each other, we'll discuss both of these aspects of blockchain infrastructure in this article.
Blockchain infrastructure - running the blockchain
Blockchain infrastructure can refer to the underlying system that enables the functioning of a blockchain network, including hardware, software, and network components that work together to ensure the smooth operation of the blockchain. The infrastructure is responsible for maintaining the integrity of the data, verifying transactions, and securing the network from attacks.
To maintain the integrity of the ledger, a blockchain requires a network of nodes that validate transactions on the ledger. These nodes communicate with each other using a peer-to-peer (P2P) protocol, which allows them to share information and synchronize their records in real time.
Another important component of blockchain infrastructure is the consensus mechanism. Consensus is the process by which the network agrees on the validity of each transaction and ensures that all nodes have the same copy of the ledger.
While there are many different types of consensus-finding models, only proof-of-work (PoW) as used in Bitcoin SV has been shown to handle several million transactions per day and will be able to scale up to billions of transactions. Due to this scalability and contrary to common belief, PoW is also the most energy-efficient consensus mechanism.
Node connectivity and interfacing with the blockchain
In mainstream discourse, node connectivity is an overseen aspect when it comes to the scalability of a blockchain. The discussion focuses mainly on other aspects regarding scalability, however, it is node connectivity that determines whether a network operates fast or slow - whether a blockchain scales or not.
Other blockchains require developers, who build on their system, to run a node. This not only means that they have to invest time and resources in this activity but also leads to weaker performances in the network. Bitcoin SV on the other hand, allows you to use the blockchain simply as a user. For this purpose, LiteClient was developed to allow businesses to simply interface with BSV.
Using the blockchain as a plug ‘n play infrastructure is one of the reasons why the BSV blockchain is suitable for developers and businesses as a blockchain infrastructure, which leads us to the misconception that Bitcoin is not suitable for so-called smart contracts and for developing applications.
Turing completeness of Bitcoin
Turing Completeness expresses the ability of a programming language or system to perform any computation that a Turing machine, i.e. a computer that can compute anything, can compute.
Contrary to popular belief, Bitcoin is already Turing complete in the original protocol. It is only the later forks, BTC and BCH, that significantly limit the potential of the original protocol. This is what Dr Craig S. Wright, the inventor of Bitcoin, and Ryan X. Charles, founder of MoneyButton, have elaborated on in detail in a lecture.
In the lecture, they point out that Bitcoin is Turing Complete in three ways:
Unrolling Loops in Script
Emulating an Unbounded Tape
If you are interested in this topic, we recommend you to watch the lecture, which is available in full length here.
Bitcoin SV - the ideal choice for blockchain infrastructure
In this article, we have briefly touched on how Bitcoin's infrastructure helps it scale as a transaction system, making it suitable as an infrastructure for applications and services in general. While other blockchains lack either scalability, security or utility, Bitcoin SV delivers the whole package.
For a deeper insight into the matter, we recommend our courses on blockchain infrastructure, which you can sign up to attend online here.