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Dash has recently activated the DKG (distributed key generation) DIP 0006, which is a protocol that enables the formation of Long-Living Masternode Quorms to enhance the performance and scalability of the network.

The spork comes not too long after the release of version 0.14 which utilizes LLMQs to lock-in blocks on a first seen rule. This mitigates 51% attacks since a miner cannot secretly mine and then suddenly reveal their chain and attempt to reorg the blockchain.

“Each member of the LLMQ will generate its own contribution to the DKG and then relay it. At the same time, each member will receive the contributions of all other members and verify the individual contributions.

A contribution consists of a “verification vector” and an individual secret key contribution for all members (including for itself). The verification vector is meant to be public and can be seen by all other members. It resembles the public P(x) polynomial described in the BLS M-of-N Threshold Scheme.”

According to the github page, “[t]he DKG Network protocol is based on the DKG Protocol described in BLS M-of-N Threshold Scheme and Distributed Key Generation”. This DKG protocol and LLMQs enable Dash to advance beyond the “short living and very small (10 members)” quorums used in InstantSend and Masternode payment voting that “requires the network to fully propagate one vote per quorum member” and thus “do[es] not scale very well”.

Using Proof of Service to incentivize optimal performance

As the tweet highlighted, this new system will be utilizing Proof of Service (PoSE) as a way to qualify if Masternodes are providing value to the network and thus should get paid for doing so, which is detailed in the Dash Documentation.

PoSe is a scoring system used to determine if a masternode is providing network services in good faith. A number of metrics are involved in the calculation, so it is not possible to game the system by causing masternodes to be PoSe banned for failing to respond to ping requests by e.g. a DDoS attack just prior to payment. Each failure to provide service results in an increase in the PoSe score relative to the maximum score, which is equal to the number of masternodes in the valid set. If the score reaches the number of masternodes in the valid set, a PoSe ban is enacted and the masternode must be repaired to ensure it provides reliable service and registered in the list again using a ProUpServTx.”

Dash Docs further goes on to detail that the “current scoring rules as of Dash 0.14” include:

  • Failure to participate in DKG= 66% punishment
  • Each subsequent block reduces PoSe score by 1

This determines whether or not a masternode has provided enough uninterrupted service to the network and thus qualifies for payment for services rendered.

Innovating for self-sustainable scaling

Many within the cryptocurrency community agree that one of top priorities for further adoption is scaling after Bitcoin’s fees skyrocketed during the last price appreciation in late 2017/early 2018 and Bitcoin did not have the block capacity to support demand. Dash has instead been finding ways to scale and improve its blockchain performance through increased block sizes, automatic InstantSend to increase speed of transactions, PrivateSend enhancements, and Chainlocks to further prevent against 51% attacks.

Dash utilizes its Masternode network to make these features possible at large-scale levels, to the tune of over 3 million transactions within 24 hours and no significant increase in fees during the last stress test. Thanks to the incentivization built into the Dash code, these Masternodes have the users’ best interests in mind by optimizing the blockchain in order to continue receiving the maximum amount of rewards.