S12 E10: Paul Sztorc on Baltic Honeybadger 2022 & BIP 300

Paul Sztorc’s Drivechains are today’s most fascinating and divisive proposal for Bitcoin scalability and expansion. If BIP 300 and 301 get merged into Core, then we’re going to witness a new age for Bitcoin maximalism: altcoin blockchains will find themselves in the middle of an existential crisis which drains all of their utility and moves it on the more secure, predictable, sustainable, and monetarily profitable Bitcoin network. Instead of focusing on creating new networks that require security systems, projects will be able to make use of Bitcoin’s existing miners who can secure all chains and become more profitable thanks to the expanded fees.

In a world of Drivechains, there will be no excuse (other than short-term speculation) for altcoin developers to not build on top of Bitcoin. Also, bitcoiners will have no reason to turn their attention to low-liquidity shitcoins when they require a particular use case. If we consider the security budget issue, then Drivechains are also beneficial for miners who need to collect more fees as the main chain block rewards get halved every 210,000 blocks.

On the other hand, there’s a significant tradeoff in terms of checks and balances in the Bitcoin network: miners will become even more powerful and serve more prominent roles. Furthermore, an alternative blockchain can take most of Bitcoin’s transactions, thus turning the original network into a ghost town like Liquid. Also, existing mining pools can become even more powerful, as their operational risks diminish and we won’t see the same “rise and fall” dynamics which enabled today’s competitive environment.

During the 2022 edition of the Baltic Honeybadger conference, Paul Sztorc was invited to present his vision for 100% Bitcoin dominance, have a one on one debate with John Carvalho, and also join a panel about unpopular opinions. However, due to reasons which concern my plan to popularize the BTCTKVR magazine, I haven’t been able to see any of these events.

For this reason, I’ve decided to approach Paul Sztorc in order to interview him about his talks. The result is pretty humorous and filled with cultural references (which range from Dr. Strangelove to The Eagles). We even talked about books worth reading, we gossiped about other podcasters, and we greeted people who were walking around the room while we were recording. Hope you’ll enjoy it!

Listen to Paul Sztorc on Apple Podcasts, Spotify & YouTube!

Of course, you don’t need to be on any of these big tech platforms. If you want to listen with more privacy and without the requirement to sign up to any service, then I recommend you to use this native player. It has all the features, you can even use the Tor browser to listen, and it’s also the source from where Apple and Spotify get the audio. Pretty sure Paul Sztorc would prefer this way.

On the other hand, if you’re on Spotify or Apple Podcasts then I’d really appreciate it if you subscribe to the show and leave feedback (especially on Apple, which enables ratings and comments). The number of subscribers is not just a vanity metric, as it also contributes to the discoverability of the show. Unfortunately, the more obscure content gets deboosted by the search and recommendation algorithms. So I have to ask you every time to support the show with likes and subscribes, as it’s the most effective way to grow beyond my social circles.

Same goes for YouTube, where you can also find a couple of short clips from this interview. Please subscribe and leave your feedback!

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Vlad Costea

I'm here for the freedom, censorship-resistance, and unconfiscatability. What about you?

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