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‘Tectonic Shift’: CasperLabs Nabs Ethereum Developer Vlad Zamfir

Originally published on: CCN
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February 23, 2019

CasperLabs announced that Ethereum developer Vlad Zamfir, the creator of CBC Casper, will be coming on as their lead architect. CasperLabs is working on a proof-of-stake blockchain. They don’t have much else about them out there; their website is still in landing page mode.

Zamfir is the authority on CBC Casper. CBC stands for “correct-by-construction.” Vitalik Buterin explains it like this:

CBC Casper is designed to be fundamentally very versatile and abstract, and come to consensus on pretty much any data structure; you can use CBC to decide whether to choose 0 or 1, you can make a simple block-by-block chain run on top of CBC, or a 292-dimensional hypercube tangle DAG, and pretty much anything in between.

CBC Casper set out to explore the possibilities of proof-of-stake on Ethereum. Over time it became a variety of protocols for varying types of data sets. In the CBC Casper FAQ, this is explained:

There are currently multiple consensus protocols within the CBC Casper family, where different protocols come to consensus on different data types. Furthermore, CBC Casper research has expanded to include research into blockchain scalability in the form of sharding.

Zamfir is quoted in a press release as being very excited about his new position. He will provide “analysis and research on the development of core algorithms and systems related to CBC Casper.” Zamfir said:

I believe that decentralized, scalable, and secure public “proof-of-stake” consensus protocols that are much more usable and secure than existing blockchains are possible, and will eventually make mining and Nakamoto consensus obsolete. However, I am not sure if the Bitcoin and Ethereum blockchain communities are going to be able to upgrade their protocols.

The Next “Tectonic Shift” In Cryptocurrency?

This is an interesting stance for someone to take, especially someone so deeply embedded in the Ethereum community. One wonders if the comments will have him follow the path of Afri Schoedon.

Zamfir went on:

I’m excited that CasperLabs has taken an interest in implementing a scalable blockchain protocol from the CBC Casper family of protocols, and hope that their efforts are both independently successful and put pressure on other projects (like Ethereum) to adopt the technology. I am very grateful for CasperLabs’ support of my research and look forward to working with them to see it become a reality.

We don’t know a lot about what CasperLabs is actually building. They were launching today, at press time, and Zamfir described building their own proof-of-stake “scalable” blockchain:

We know that their current CEO Medha Parlikar has been with the company since November. If they’re building their own blockchain platform, it will be entering a sea of such platforms – EOS, Cardano, NEO, and the list goes on.

The first speaker in the above video said that CBC Casper might be “the next tectonic shift” in cryptocurrencies.

The above launch video seems to indicate that they are launching a “decentralized” blockchain system that is scalable. The contention is that Bitcoin and Ethereum are not scalable.

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