Bitcoin Core: It is well known that competition stimulates business. This must have been what the employees of the research department of the BitMEX crypto exchange must have thought when they started to set up their own client for the further development of Bitcoin. With the new client, BitMEX wants to demonstrate that the supposed dominance of the Bitcoin core implementation is not carved in stone.
Bitcoin Core is still the most common implementation of Bitcoin. More than 95 percent of nodes on the network use Bitcoin Core, which is based on Satoshi Nakamoto’s original reference code. BitMEX’s research department has now investigated how to increase competition in development without compromising the crypto currency through events such as chain splits.
More than 9 out of 10 nodes run with Bitcoin secret
BitMEX first analyzed which forms of competition exist in the further development of the protocol. According to the analysis of the Crypto Exchange, projects competing with Bitcoin secret can largely be divided into two categories:
Competition between different chains
This category includes software projects that provide new rules for consensus building for existing implementations of the protocol. These can be soft and hard forks. An example of competing chains is the Bitcoin ABC vs. Bitcoin SV debate at BCH. BitMEX describes this approach as „risky“, as it can possibly lead to a chain split. This is also feared by BCH. Other examples of this approach are Bitcoin UASF and BTC Classic.
Competition between independent implementations
Another approach is to implement the Bitcoin Core protocol on a new code basis. This re-implementation must include the same consensus-building rules as Bitcoin Core. Nevertheless, there may be conflicts in the consensus mechanism if the re-implementation behaves differently than the dominant client of the network due to its different code base. In the worst case, a chain split can also occur here. Examples for the re-implementation of the Bitcoin Core protocol include BTCD, Libbitcoin and bcoin.
The third way
BitMEX is looking for a third way to compete with Bitcoin Core. Neither the consensus rules nor the code base of Bitcoin Core should be touched. Instead, a software fork is carried out. This bears the – not exactly original – Bitcoin BitMEX Research. The client should illustrate that a healthy form of competition is possible with Bitcoin Core. It also aims to prove that Bitcoin’s fate is not inextricably linked to the Bitcoin Core client. After all, each node operator has the free choice of which implementation to choose. And this corresponds to the Bitcoin ideal rather than constantly focusing on a supposed Bitcoin core development team.