Sota Watanabe
Aug 4 · 4 min read

Interoperability is one of the scaling solutions. Polkadot provides transactional scalability by spreading transactions across multiple parallel blockchains, known as parachains. So, why do we need Plasma? Yes. This is a rational question because Plasma is also a scaling solution. In this article, we would like to discuss the reasons why we need Plasma in the Polkadot ecosystem, even though Polkadot itself is a scaling solution. But, let me introduce Plasm first :D

About Plasm

We are making Plasma modules called Plasm. Using our modular platform, any developer can create a high-speed blockchain with plasma technology within minutes. We use Substrate which enables anyone to create a custom blockchain easily. By adding Plasm to a Substrate chain, any developers can create a high-speed blockchain.

Here is our GitHub repo! (Star please⭐)

Since Plasm is a module for Substrate, we can also make a Plasma centric blockchain. We plan to be a parachain once Polkadot is successfully launched.

Based on the above, there are 2 ways to use Plasm.

1. Import Plasm to your Substrate chain for scaling.

2. Build an application or child chains on the Plasm parachain.

If you are interested, please check out our previous articles.

The reasons we need Plasma

There are at least 4 potential reasons here: more scalability, Polkadot’s parachain slots, Polkadot2.0, and bridging.

More scalability

First of all, more scalability. As I mentioned before, Polkadot becomes a highly scalable network by spreading transactions across multiple parallel blockchains. We will see many types of parachain such as an IoT chain, a gaming chain, an energy chain, and a payment chain. In addition to that, there will also be common-good chains like bridge chains, a smart contract chain, a Plasma chain, and a dex chain. We believe that some of these use cases need tremendous transaction throughputs on a parachain. Plasm makes it possible to build use cases that require high performance without sacrificing decentralization.

Polkadot’s Parachain Slots

Polkadot is a heterogeneous multichain framework. It empowers blockchain networks to work together under the protection of shared security. Many blockchains will be connected via Polkadot, but the number of connected chains is limited and you need to win the slot auction to join the network.

Plasm parachain can be a good option for you if you don’t have enough DOTs to win the slot auction because you can connect your chain to the Plasm parachain. It means your chain is indirectly connected to Polkadot. From this point of view, I think we can say Plasm chain is a common good chain.

Note: If you want to learn more about Polkadot parachains and the slots, you should check this article.

Polkadot2.0

Source: https://medium.com/polkadot-network/polkadot-the-foundation-of-a-new-internet-e8800ec81c7

Plasma is a scaling solution which has a hierarchical structure. It is a framework that allows the creation of child chains that use the main chain as a trust layer. We assume that we can use some parts of Plasma technology for Polkadot2.0 where a relay chain connects to another relay chain, providing infinite scalability. It is expected in 2020.

Bridge (Atomic swaps and smart contracts)

Polkadot is compatible with other blockchains like Bitcoin and Ethereum. It should be possible to make a bridge between them with Plasma though we have to think about many technical details like digital signature, hash functions, Hash Time-Locked Contract and so on. If we can make a bridge between Plasm parachain and another blockchain (e.g., Ethereum), it brings tremendous value to the ecosystem because Plasma provides a secure and trustless solution to move assets from A to B through plasma child chain.

Conclusion

We discussed a lot about the potential needs of Plasma in Polkadot network. However, we still have to verify the technical details and measure the performance. We are very excited to do so by using the Kusama Network!

Thanks, Ed Mazurek for reviewing.

If you have a question, feel free to contact me at @wsouta (Telegram) or @sota:matrix.org (Riot).

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Stake Technologies

Stake Technologies is a company who builds decentralized protocols.

Sota Watanabe

Written by

CEO of Stake Technologies // Twitter @WatanabeSota

Stake Technologies

Stake Technologies is a company who builds decentralized protocols.

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