Skip to main content
The Chaincode Podcast

The Chaincode Podcast

By Chaincode Labs
A podcast about Bitcoin protocol development
Listen on
Where to listen
Apple Podcasts Logo

Apple Podcasts

Breaker Logo

Breaker

Castbox Logo

Castbox

Google Podcasts Logo

Google Podcasts

Overcast Logo

Overcast

Pocket Casts Logo

Pocket Casts

RadioPublic Logo

RadioPublic

Spotify Logo

Spotify

Stitcher Logo

Stitcher

Currently playing episode

Chaincode Decoded: Blockchain - Episode 14

The Chaincode Podcast

1x
Chaincode Decoded: Blockchain - Episode 14
In this Chaincode Decoded segment we talk about the fundamental role of Bitcoin's blockchain and some of its peculiarities. We discuss: Purpose of the blockchain (0:40) Mining is a lottery, not a race (1:57) Why doesn't the same miner always win? (5:12) What happens if two blocks are found at the same height? (6:12) The longest reorgs (9:11) How does the blockchain work? (12:18)  - Headers-first synchronization and Ultraprune: Episode 1 with Pieter Wuille  - Episode 5: The UTXO set Why does Bitcoin converge on one chain? (15:20)  - Selfish mining paper: Majority is not Enough: Bitcoin Mining is Vulnerable Will we always find a new block? (18:04)  - Entropy sources in the block header Mining pools have disjoint hashing spaces (19:30)  - Correction: mining pools do not have a separate pay-out address for each participant, but give out a unique coinbase transaction stub for each.  - Eschaton block Thanks to Caralie for the sound engineering.
23:07
May 27, 2021
Matt Corallo and Lightning Development Kit - Episode 13
In Episode 13, we sit down again with Matt Corallo and discuss his work on the Lightning Development Kit (LDK). In this conversation we cover: - Starting Rust-Lightning (1:20) - Language bindings challenges (4:09)  - FFI (5:32) - Interoperability of Lightning (7:10) - Zero-value invoices (7:35) - Keysend/push payments/spontaneous payments (8:20) - What is the LDK stack? (9:29) - Anchor Outputs (10:41)  - Child pays for parent (CPFP) (11:02) - Who tracks the onchain state when using LND? (12:30) - LDK tracks the channel commitment transaction, how is that done? (13:45)  - Compact block filters - Contrasting multiple implementations working from a spec in Lighting vs. no spec with one dominant reference implementation in Bitcoin (14:58)  - The Lightning Spec - What's the state of the Lightning Network? Have we moved beyond #reckless? (18:49)  - Denial of Service (DoS) vulnerabilities    - Channel Jamming (22:00) - Eltoo and the punishment dynamic (22:45) - Will the network trend to trusted relationships and lend itself to KYC? (24:50) - FATF updates its guidance on Virtual Asset Service Provider (VASP) (26:50) - Where LDK goes from here? (29:55) Thanks to Caralie for the sound engineering.
31:55
May 13, 2021
Chaincode Decoded: Mempool - Episode 12
The Chaincode Decoded segment returns and we jump into the deep end of the mempool. Child Pays for Parent (CPFP) (2:15) How miner evaluate fee rates (4:34) Why is it hard to estimate fee rates? (6:03) How do exchanges estimate fees? (8:00) Will the mempool empty again? (9:23) Miner/pools and the need for a high fee environment (11:04) Replace by Fee (RBF) (14:05) - BIP 125 Mempool eviction and the problems it can cause (19:04) Anchor Outputs (20:50) Package Relay (21:06) Ways to use the blockspace more efficiently (22:15) - blockchain.com implements Segwit Thanks to Caralie for the sound engineering.
26:56
April 26, 2021
Chaincode Decoded: Bech32m - Episode 11
This revisits a segment we call Chaincode Decoded. In this episode, we'll learn how to say Bech32 and also what it and Bech32m are. Enjoy! Correction: The characters removed from the set are 1 B I O (2:20) Why do we need Bech32? (0:57) What is the distinction between Bech32 and native SegWit? (3:20) Why does Taproot need a new address format? (4:13) Bech32 length extension mutation weakness (11:20) - mailing list post Bech32m (12:25) - BIP350 Further resources: Pieter Wuille: New Address Type for SegWit Addresses (presentation) Sipa demo Bech32 adoption (Some of) the math behind Bech32 addresses Thanks to Caralie for the sound engineering.
14:44
April 16, 2021
Carl Dong and Modularizing the Bitcoin Consensus Engine - Episode 10
In part 2 of this sit down with Carl Dong, Murch and Jonas cover the delicate work of modularizing the Bitcoin consensus engine. In this conversation, we cover:   - Carl's De-globalize ChainstateManager PR (2:25)   - Async Block Processing PR   - Deglobalize class of chainstate manager (g_chainman) (3:40)   - AssumeUTXO   - global variables and main (5:25)   - scripted diff (9:35)   - 0.8 upgrade consensus failure (11:25)   - Jorge Timon's libconsensus project (13:10)   - current libbitcoinconsensus only does script verification (13:25)   - the case for multiple implementations (14:40)   - ABI (15:10) Thanks as always to Matthew Zipkin for the sound engineering.
19:23
December 15, 2020
Carl Dong and Build Systems - Episode 9
In part 1 of this sit down with Carl Dong, Murch and Jonas get into the weeds of all things build system. Stay tuned for the second half of this conversation when Carl describes his recent adventures isolating the libconsensus engine. In this conversation, we cover: - GUIX (2:25)  - talk at 2019 Breaking Bitcoin about reproducible builds - Gitian builds (4:15) - Fake time (4:50) - Timestamps and reproducibility of packages (6:33) - reproducible-builds.org (6:57)  - SOURCE_DATE_EPOCH - Toolchains (14:40) - Windows Builds and reproducibility (15:20)  - GCC libtool pointer confusion - NSIS (20:25) - Using Debian as an example (22:56) - User choice in their security model (28:15) - Making the process accessible (31:20) - Mac OS X Toolchain & SDK and cross-compiling (33:30) Thanks as always to Matthew Zipkin for the sound engineering.
45:28
November 30, 2020
Murch and Enterprise Wallets/UTXO Management - Episode 8
After a long hiatus, we return to talk with new Chaincode member Murch and get his take on enterprise wallets and UTXO management. In this conversation, we cover: - Enterprise UTXO management (3:35) - The impact of the 2017 hype cycle (4:30) - The importance of UTXO set minimization (5:30) - The fee market today (6:44) - Batching Transactions (9:15)  - Payment Batching - Consolidations (11:05)  - Consolidation of 4 Million UTXOs at Xapo - Change splitting (14:10) - Replace By Fee (16:04)  - RBF in the wild  - Fee bumping - SegWit (21:10) - How enterprises estimate fees (25:00) - Omnibus wallets (28:05) - Off-chain sending (31:50) - Taproot (33:57) Other resources: - Bitcoin Optech Field Report: How segwit and batching could have saved half a billion dollars in fees Thanks as always to Matthew Zipkin for the sound engineering.
36:01
November 9, 2020
Nadav Kohen and Payment Points - Episode 7
In Episode 7, we chat with Nadav Kohen of Suredbits and discuss payment points as an alternative to HTLCs on the Lightning Network. In this conversation we cover: Payment points (1:55) - Blog post part 1 - HTLCs (2:00) Timelocks (4:16) HTLC drawbacks (5:38) - Payment decorrelation - Wormhole attack presented in Anonymous Multi-Hop Locks for Blockchain Scalability and Interoperability (6:35) Point time lock contracts (PTLCs) (9:50) - Adaptor signatures on Schnorr Proof of payment (13:25) Invoiceless transactions (15:05) Hashes, pre-images, and HTLC mechanics (16:35) Onion analogy (18:55) PTLC mechanics (19:30) Why don’t we use PTLCs today? (22:15) Lightning in Scriptless Scripts posting by Andrew Poelstra March 2017 Improving proof of payment (26:10) Stuckless payments (30:46) Spam on Lightning (35:46) Selling Signatures and Schnorr signatures off the main chain (36:55) Contingent payments (39:20) Escrow contracts (41:28) Atomic multiparty setup and payment renegotiation (46:02) ETA of payment points (48:02) Thanks as always to Matthew Zipkin for the sound engineering.
49:44
March 30, 2020
Matt Corallo and Compact Blocks/FIBRE - Episode 6
In Episode 6, we sit down with Matt Corallo and discuss his work on compact blocks and the FIBRE network. In this conversation we cover: Selfish mining (2:03) - Majority is not Enough: Bitcoin Mining is Vulnerable - Optimal Selfish Mining Strategies in Bitcoin Ethereum's larger pools making superlinear profits (5:10) Defining selfish mining (9:52) Compact blocks (12:37) - FAQ - BIP152 - Reference implementation FIBRE (20:28) Forward error correction (24:14) - Shamir secret sharing Difference between TCP and UDP (29:21) Thanks as always to Matthew Zipkin for the sound engineering.
32:18
March 12, 2020
Chaincode Decoded: The UTXO Set - Episode 5
This is our first Chaincode Decoded Podcast. In this new podcast format, we'll dive into the details of a concept we've talked about on previous shows. No guests, no news, just Jonas and John talking about Bitcoin. A podcast by Bitcoin nerds for Bitcoin nerds. In the first episode, we talk about the UTXO set. We'd love to know what you think! Ultraprune - episode 1 (1:20) Assume UTXO - episode 4 (1:28) The cache layer (8:02) Dbcache parameter (9:48)   - John talks about latency comparisons on a human scale. (Note: He incorrectly says that 1 second for RAM access equates to "months or years" for disk access. Actually 4 minutes for RAM access equates to 1-9 months for disk access.) Different ideas on how to keep track of the UTXO set (11:29)   - utreexo (13:48) What’s the future of the size of the UTXO set? (13:54) UTXO consolidation (15:02) UTXO selection (16:48) Murch’s thesis on coin selection Branch and bound H/T to Amiti for the idea of the format. Thanks as always to Matthew Zipkin for the sound engineering.
17:49
February 26, 2020
James O'Beirne and Assume UTXO - Episode 4
Next in the studio, we caught James O'Beirne, who until recently was a co-worker of ours at Chaincode. We talked to James about his experience at the Chaincode residency, his most recent project Assume UTXO (GitHub issue, proposal, talk) and how he champions and effects change in Bitcoin Core. Discussed in this episode: - 2018 residency (2:42)  - Choosing what to work on (5:40) - Fork detection framework (6:55) - Initial block download (IBD) (8:10)  - What a node does during IBD 1110 - DNS seeds (11:30) - UTXO set (12:30)  - Parallelized signature validation (14:20)  - Assume valid (14:40)  - Different than checkpoints (17:30)  - Updating assume valid value in the code (0.19, 0.18) (19:00) - Assume UTXO (21:20)  - Platform and memory considerations (27:15) - Criticisms (27:55) - Championing a big change in Bitcoin Core (32:20) If you like this, find more shows at podcast.chaincode.com. Thank you to Matthew Zipkin for sound engineering.
36:14
February 12, 2020
Jeremy Rubin and CHECKTEMPLATEVERIFY - Episode 3
For our third episode, we talked to Jeremy Rubin about his recent CHECKTEMPLATEVERIFY proposal. During our discussion, we touch on the history of covenant proposals, vaults, payment pools, CTV's synergies with Taproot and more. Notes: What is CHECKTEMPLATEVERIFY (CTV)? (4:30) What is a covenant? (5:25) - CoinCovenants using SCIP signatures, an amusingly bad idea (2013) (7:15) - Bitcoin Covenants AKA MES16 paper (2016) (8:15) - Talk at Stanford Blockchain Conference (2017) (9:20) Why covenants? (11:43) Utxos.org Vaults (12:10) - Annuity type vaults (13:40) Payment pools (18:00) Synergies with Taproot (22:11) SIGHASH_NOINPUT/ SIGHASH_ANYPREVOUT (24:31) CTV and lightning channels (26:30) Congestion control (32:04) CreateNewBlock() (33:09) If you like this, find more shows at podcast.chaincode.com. Thank you to Matthew Zipkin for sound engineering.
38:31
January 30, 2020
Pieter Wuille (part 2 of 2) - Episode 2
For our second episode, we pick up where we left off with Pieter Wuille in episode 1. If you missed that one, you should go back and listen to it first. Pieter has been a Bitcoin protocol developer and contributor to Bitcoin Core since 2011. In that time, he’s authored or contributed to some of the most important developments, including segwit, bech32, libsecp, HD wallets, schnorr and taproot, and many others. We talked to Pieter about his thoughts on the lessons learned from the March 2013 Consensus Fork as well as libsecp and Pieter’s thoughts about Bitcoin in 2020. Discussed in this episode: Lessons learned from the 0.8 consensus failure (1:00) BIP66 - Strict DER signatures (3:13) Satoshi’s usage of OpenSSL (3:47) OpenSSL and DER encoding (5:35) libsecp256k1 (12:12) Hal Finney’s post on the special properties of the secp256k1 (12:50) Peter Dettman and Bouncy Castle (16:58) Imagining P2SH from the beginning (26:20) If you like this, find more shows at podcast.chaincode.com. Thank you to Matthew Zipkin for sound engineering.
33:16
January 28, 2020
Pieter Wuille (part 1 of 2) - Episode 1
For our first episode, we talked to Bitcoin Core contributor Pieter Wuille. Pieter has been a Bitcoin protocol developer and contributor to Bitcoin Core since 2011. In that time, he’s authored or contributed to some of the most important developments, including segwit, bech32, libsecp, HD wallets, schnorr and taproot, and many others. We talked to Pieter about his thoughts on some of those influential PRs, including headers-first syncing and ultraprune, and hear about the motivation for those changes and how he thinks about them now. This is a two-parter and in the next episode, we’ll hear about libsecp and Pieter’s thoughts about Bitcoin in 2020. Discussed in this episode: Headers-first syncing (3:30) Tracking peer state and finding good peers (13:00) How Bitcoin Core development culture has changed in the last 9 years (18:11) Bitcoin test evolution (19:00) Ultraprune (21:55) March 2013 Consensus Fork (26:50): - March 2013 Chain Fork Post-Mortem - Analyzing the 2013 Bitcoin fork If you like this, find more shows at podcast.chaincode.com. Thank you to Matthew Zipkin for sound engineering.
34:21
January 28, 2020