[Bitcoin-development] Proposed alternatives to the 20MB step function

Clément Elbaz clem.ds at gmail.com
Fri May 8 10:30:22 UTC 2015

Matt : I think proposal #1 and #3 are a lot better than #2, and #1 is my

I see two problems with proposal #2.
The first problem with proposal #2 is that, as we see in democracies,
there is often a mismatch between the people conscious vote and these same
people behavior.

Relying on an  intentional vote made consciously by miners by choosing a
configuration value can lead to twisted results if their actual behavior
doesn't correlate with their vote (eg, they all vote for a small block size
because it is the default configuration of their software, and then they
fill it completely all the time and everything crashes).

The second problem with proposal #2 is that if Gavin and Mike are right,
there is simply no time to gather a meaningful amount of votes over the
coinbases, after the fork but before the Bitcoin scalability crash.

I like proposal #1 because the "vote" is made using already available data.
Also there is no possible mismatch between behavior and vote. As a miner
you vote by choosing to create a big (or small) block, and your actions
reflect your vote. It is simple and straightforward.

My feelings on proposal #3 is it is a little bit mixing apples and oranges,
but I may not seeing all the implications.

Le ven. 8 mai 2015 à 09:21, Matt Whitlock <bip at mattwhitlock.name> a écrit :

> Between all the flames on this list, several ideas were raised that did
> not get much attention. I hereby resubmit these ideas for consideration and
> discussion.
> - Perhaps the hard block size limit should be a function of the actual
> block sizes over some trailing sampling period. For example, take the
> median block size among the most recent 2016 blocks and multiply it by 1.5.
> This allows Bitcoin to scale up gradually and organically, rather than
> having human beings guessing at what is an appropriate limit.
> - Perhaps the hard block size limit should be determined by a vote of the
> miners. Each miner could embed a desired block size limit in the coinbase
> transactions of the blocks it publishes. The effective hard block size
> limit would be that size having the greatest number of votes within a
> sliding window of most recent blocks.
> - Perhaps the hard block size limit should be a function of block-chain
> length, so that it can scale up smoothly rather than jumping immediately to
> 20 MB. This function could be linear (anticipating a breakdown of Moore's
> Law) or quadratic.
> I would be in support of any of the above, but I do not support Mike
> Hearn's proposed jump to 20 MB. Hearn's proposal kicks the can down the
> road without actually solving the problem, and it does so in a
> controversial (step function) way.
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