There’s no exact, measurable evidence that this will happen as of yet, but one startup seems to be doing everything that it can to make it true. According to a report by CoinDesk today, Spacemesh is looking to truly revolutionize the consensus protocol space.
Overall, their idea appears to be seen more as an innovation and less as a completely new form of consensus protocol, though its name is intriguing. Despite this, Spacemesh’s primary aim for the future is to develop the consensus protocol that replaces existing Proof of Work and Proof of Stake protocols.
They’re calling it, “Proof-of-space-time,” or “PoST.”
What exactly does this mean? CoinDesk isn’t exactly crystal clear on the subject, choosing to focus mainly on specific features over the overall picture of what this new protocol will bring about.
With a look at Spacemesh’s chief whitepaper, the whole idea becomes clearer but before we discuss the information that’s there, it’s important to state a quick disclaimer. In their own words, Spacemesh’s product is far from finished and anything could change as their research continues.
Even so, from the beginning, it’s clear that outside reports on Spacemesh aren’t currently using all of the relevant information on their future product offering.
First, Spacemesh isn’t just developing a new consensus protocol. Overall, they are developing what they call “a block mesh operating system,” that provides the energy needed to run a cryptographically secure, smart-contract run, supercomputer.
Even so, Spacemesh terms their consensus protocol “the heart” of their product. For the purpose of clarity, however, we’ll stick to a quick discussion of the protocol for this piece, but expect further pieces to dig deeper into Spacemesh’s offering.
Unlike a Proof-of-Stake network, which requires large collateral deposits in order for nodes to participate in it, and Proof-of-Work, which requires excessive computing power, PoST appears to work with any computer. Spacemesh adds to this by saying that participating nodes will get frequently rewarded from block creation.
The initial, logical question that still comes to mind is: what are the exact storage requirements to effectively be a Masternode on the Spacemesh network? The answer to this can be found in how Spacemesh describes the process of setting up a participating node.
Interestingly enough, Spacemesh does in fact use Proof-of-Work, but only briefly to prove that the would-be node has enough storage space to be on the network. It’s also essential to state here that Spacemesh isn’t clear about minimum network requirements related to storage space, except to say that the more you allocate, the more rewards you get.
Here is where the major red flag comes to light related to this project.
As of now, at least, it really isn’t any different from other popular projects like Dash, that directly incentivizes network participation by the most powerful nodes. Spacemesh appears to currently be a storage-space based, Masternode network. Therefore, even though the initial idea for PoST is innovative, this is a perfect example of the importance of doing your own research on all things crypto.