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Dash Core Group recently unveiled the path to full implementation of version 0.13.0 that will be accomplished as more masternodes and miners upgrade their systems, which highlights the important aspects of Dash.

Source: Dash Talk Discord (StayDashy.com) – announcements channel

Once each masternode and miner upgrades their system, PrivateSend through that system has the new denomination of 0.001 Dash for mixing, which will help make attaining privacy faster and cheaper for Dash users. DIP 3, which contains the code for the upgrade, then has a period of 4,032 blocks, or about 7 days, to have 80% of blocks signal to lock-in the change and another 4,032 block period to activate DIP3.

Source: https://chainz.cryptoid.info/dash/#!network

However, the activation of major improvements in version 0.13, such as Deterministic Masternode Lists (DML) and automatic InstantSend require the activation of Spork 15 and Spork 16, respectively. These require greater than 80% of masternodes to have registered using the new Provider Registration special transaction (“the ‘protx’ command”). At the time of writing, 59.8% of nodes have upgraded their systems to the new version 13.0. Nevertheless, once the upgrade to DML is accomplished, there is a depreciation of the last system, all proposal votes are reset, and thus, revoting will have to occur. The network is quickly approaching this threshold that will enable further evolutionary features that will make Dash even more usable in everyday life.

Progressing towards major changes

Deterministic Masternode Lists will allow masternode operators to split their keys into three parts; the collateral owner, the operator, and the voter, without having to trust each position with power crossover into other duties. This enables the possibility for more efficient masternode operations since there can be a specialization of labor between individuals that previously would not have been trusted with the masternode collateral access. Furthermore, automatic InstantSend will enable sub-2 second confirmation lock-ins for no additional fee on any transaction with four inputs or less, which is around 90% of all network transactions. This will further increase the economic surplus of both consumers and merchants that do not have to worry about the possibility of doublespend attacks, which is key for faster and cheaper point-of-sale service.

As might have been noticed, these upgrades utilize another Dash invention; the spork. Dash Documentation outlines the usefulness of this attribute to make the upgrade process more seamless.

“A multi-phased fork, colloquially known as a “spork”, is a mechanism unique to Dash used to safely deploy new features to the network through network-level variables to avoid the risk of unintended network forking during upgrades.”

These sporks allow code to be introduced to the network, but not turned on until a sufficient majority of the network adopts the changes, in this case 80%. Additionally, should any unforeseen problems arise, “the code can be deactivated in the same manner, without the need for a network-wide rollback or client update”. Sporks have already demonstrated their potent potential in the past since Dash’s network upgrades have occurred without incident.

Source: https://dashintel.org/masternode_network

During this upgrade, as has happened during past upgrades, the number of masternodes temporarily decrease as individuals take their systems offline to conduct upgrades. At the time of writing, there are currently 4,633 active masternodes and 402 inactive masternodes, but active counts typically recover quickly. The chart illustrates (blue line) the same pattern repeating during every upgrade cycle. Nevertheless, while this is happening, the network is still hovering around 2.257 PH/s at the time of writing. Additionally, the network recently passed the psychological threshold of 1 million blocks (currently at 1,011,880 blocks).

Dash incentivize cooperative behavior

Cryptocurrency aims to solve censorship and excessive fees by distributing power over many individuals and excluding a central point of authority. However, this can cause different problems, such as dysfunctional nodes and a community that cannot reach consensus to progress forward. Dash is able to avoid these issues and achieve a functional network by incentivizing masternodes and miners to upgrade since individuals running old software will not get paid their share of the block reward. This benefits the everyday users of Dash with speedy, inexpensive, and secure transactions through a responsive network. This ability to incentivize cooperation to create a reliable network service also helps separate Dash from its competitors through offering quality service.