NEAR and the Blockchain Trilemma
OWS Education / NEAR Basics
Welcome to the second document of the ‘NEAR Basics’ batch, part of OWS Education and created by the OWS team. In this doc we will look into how NEAR is aiming to overcome the Blockchain Trilemma.
Recall that the Blockchain Trilemma is about concurrently achieving decentralisation, scalability, and security all at once. Essentially, transactions created by the users of the NEAR network must be computed and stored using a method that is decentralised, so that power funnels are avoided; scalable, so that transactions throughput and finality is rapid enough to handle high levels of traffic; and secure, so that malicious actors cannot compromise or corrupt information on the network.
So, how can this be achieved?
NEAR is a blockchain, so it must have a method to ensure that all transactions on the network are orderly and truthful. To reach this consensus, the NEAR network should have:
- A decentralised method to select a set of nodes, on any particular moment, so that those nodes can make decisions for the NEAR network.
- A scalable and secure method by which the selected set of nodes can process and compute transactions and come to an agreement about the current global state of the NEAR blockchain.
If these two points are achieved by the NEAR network, then we have overcome the Blockchain Trilemma.
- NEAR uses TPoS as its decentralised selection process.
- And uses Sharding for its scalable and secure agreement process.
So, a TPoS, Sharded, consensus protocol is the mechanism used by the NEAR blockchain to validate transactions and ensure that they are orderly and truthful.
In the next doc we will look at NEAR’s TPoS mechanism, and in the third doc of this batch we will look at NEAR’s Nightshade Sharding mechanism.
So, how does TPoS work on NEAR? Let’s go to the next doc and find out.
About Open Web Sandbox
A human-centric digital hub for everyone wishing to engage with projects building on top of the NEAR Protocol.
Written by Jacopo Nuti.