An independent review of RSK
Integrating Smart Contracts into the Bitcoin Network
RSK is seeking to integrate the smart contract element onto the bitcoin network. It is a fully open source project utilising merge mining and a 2-way peg mechanism with bitcoin. It aims to add value by lowering block intervals from 10 mins (bitcoin) to 10 seconds, faster confirmation times, providing scalability and sustainability to the bitcoin ecosystem.
RSK (also known as Rootstock) is incorporated in Argentina with an aim to introduce smart contracts to the legacy bitcoin blockchain. The primary goal is to reduce stakeholders’ conflict by integrating a governance model with a 2-way peg to BTC prices. Here are several issues that RSK seeks to resolve within the Bitcoin ecosystem:
•A fair governance system that represents all stakeholders of the Bitcoin community
•Sustainability of Bitcoin mining network through merge mining utility
•Lowering Bitcoin transaction fees, and reducing price volatility
•Faster confirmation times
Commercial & Technical Strategy
The platform seeks to drive scalability in the bitcoin network by integrating smart contracts, lowering transaction fees, maintaining current hash rate to ensure tighter security and increasing processing time, at the same time upholding the rigidity of bitcoin’s security. RSK is indeed creating a protocol to solve a prevailing issue within the bitcoin network. By introducing RSK Virtual Machine, smart contracts can be executed. They provide an alternative to existing solutions such as competition free infrastructure projects (Hyperledger and Ripple), and other scaling solutions (Lightning Network). RSK had mined its genesis block in early 2018 and will continue to open the mainnet up on a stage- by-stage basis.
RSK raised $1m in seed funding and $3.5m for pre-series A funding in mid- 2017. The latest round comes from a long list of investors with more information provided in the next segment. The project might have plans to conduct an ICO in the near future for their payment platform, and any updates will be posted on their official channels.
Several prominent investors have backed the project, including:
Bitmain - Bitmain is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of mining rigs with profits of $4b last year. They have stepped into venture capital and have invested in projects such as Circle, Path Network, BitKan, RSK labs, ChainLab.
Digital Currency Group (DCG) - DCG aims to build and support bitcoin and blockchain related companies. Past projects include Civic, Blockstack, Decentraland, Filecoin, Hedera Hashgraph.
RSK has entered a space to build a platform that competes against the major cryptocurrencies. However, several features embedded within the platform steers them away from being a direct competitor towards a more complementary nature. We have identified two projects that portray similarities in comparison to RSK.
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