The ‘Crypto Cold War’: Bitcoin’s Politics Of Scalability


David Floyd // Twitter

Writing on, bitcoin observer David Floyd claims the quest to increase the size of the bitcoin block is a critical issue for establishing bitcoin as a major currency. The quest, however, has no ready solution, Floyd notes in his essay, titled, “The Crypto-Cold War: Bitcoin’s Politics of Scalability.”

Floyd, who writes about investing, energy and politics, says at present, bitcoin’s processing capability dwarfs in comparison to Visa, which can process 56,000 payments per second.

Increase The Block Size?

Increasing the bitcoin block size could solve the issue, he writes, but this presents drawbacks. Floyd compares the debate over increasing the block size to the Cold War, in which one false move could “nuke the whole project.”

With the existing system for creating blocks, anyone can pop into the open source file, tweak one line of code and “save the nerd money.”

“But what if everyone doesn’t want your new-fangled Bitcoin? What if they like their Oldcoin? You’ve generated a fork, rendering Bitcoin a monstrous, two-headed thing and guaranteeing that, when it is all over, the people on the wrong chain have lost their money,” he writes.

March 2013: Historical Precedent


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