Can you make the inscription disappear? How much permission do Bitcoin Core developers have?

This article is approximately 3758 words,and reading the entire article takes about 5 minutes
Defend or sacrifice? Do early Bitcoin Core developers really have the right to make inscriptions disappear?

Original author:JaleelKaori,BlockBeats

Original editor: Zhang Wen, BlockBeats

On December 6, Bitcoin Core developer Luke Dashjr posted on social media that “Inscription” was exploiting a vulnerability in the Bitcoin Core client to send spam information to the blockchain. Since 2013, Bitcoin Core has allowed users to set additional data size limits when forwarding or mining transactions. Inscriptions circumvent this limitation by obscuring their data into program code.

To put it simply, this experienced Bitcoin client developer believes that the inscription track, represented by ORDI, which is now in the top 50 in market capitalization, is a bug and can be repaired.

Can you make the inscription disappear? How much permission do Bitcoin Core developers have?

Luke Dashjr said, “This vulnerability was recently fixed in Bitcoin Knots v2 5.1. Due to the severe disruption to my workflow late last year (v2 4 was completely skipped), the fix took longer than usual. In the upcoming v2 6 version, Bitcoin Core is still vulnerable. I can only hope that it will be finally fixed before v2 7 next year.”

Luke Dashjr made it clear in a reply to the comment below the tweet that if this bug is fixed, Ordinals inscriptions and BRC 20 tokens will no longer exist.

As a Bitcoin OG, Luke Dashjr has been an outspoken critic of the Ordinals protocol. In February this year, Dashjr tweeted that The Ordinals protocol is an attack on Bitcoin. In May, when the first wave of inscription craze appeared, the opposition of Dashjr and Bitcoin Core was once regarded as an uncertain factor in the development of inscription.

However, the previous scolding did not trigger a large-scale discussion. After all, Ordinals is still a product of market bias. But now ORDI, which has increased 20,000 times, has become a national meme. Luke Dashjr’s words caused ORDI’s market value to evaporate by 300 million US dollars in a few minutes.

The reason why the market is afraid is obvious: Does the Bitcoin core team really have the power to change the code at will?

Luke Dashjr: Early developer who joined in 2011

Is Luke Dashjr qualified to comment on Bitcoin? Of course he does. Luke Dashjr encountered Bitcoin in 2011 and soon joined the project as a developer. His programming knowledge quickly led him to become a major Bitcoin developer, helping with Bitcoins early construction. His early contributions to Bitcoin software focused on troubleshooting Bitcoin Cores security, performance, and advanced features.

Sorted by the number of submissions, as of now, Luke Dashjr isBitcoin Core code contributor rankingRanked 14th.

Can you make the inscription disappear? How much permission do Bitcoin Core developers have?

As an early developer who joined, Luke Dashjr participated in almost all important early events of Bitcoin.

Dashjr was one of the first to discover a Bitcoin hard fork in 2013 due to a software bug in Bitcoin Core. In 2014, Dashjr began to play a larger role in the Bitcoin ecosystem as it used a modified version of the BFG Miner that allowed the miner to work at a higher performance than other miners at the time.

In 2016, Dashjr launched BIP-2, a major improvement over the BIP format proposed by Amir Taaki, another Bitcoin developer and famous cryptographer. Dashjr was also a key player in activating Segwit in Bitcoin during 2016 and 2017. Dashjr’s other contributions to the development of Bitcoin include BIP-22 and BIP-23, which respectively aim to optimize the block generation structure and improve efficiency within the mining pool.

Can you make the inscription disappear? How much permission do Bitcoin Core developers have?

Luke Dashjr; Source: Crypto Times

Going back to the previous article, Luke Dashjr mentioned that this vulnerability was recently fixed in Bitcoin Knots v2 5.1, and it is hoped that it will be finally fixed before v2 7 next year. In this Bitcoin Knots, it is a complete Bitcoin client. The original idea also came from Luke Dashjr.

Luke Dashjr is also a cybersecurity extremist. In fact, he believes that Bitcoin has security holes in its current network state because its network is not yet fully decentralized. For this reason, it invites everyone using Bitcoin to install their own full node.

Why not like Ordinals?

Luke Dashjr’s dislike of Ordinals stems from his firm belief in preserving Bitcoin fundamentalism.

At the end of 2022, software engineer Casey Rodarmor created the Ordinals protocol, which numbers the smallest unit Satoshi in Bitcoin and stores file metadata through Taproot to create a unique NFT. On March 8, an anonymous developer named @domo released the BRC-20 protocol, which can create an alternative token standard on top of the Ordinals protocol. Then this year’s inscription craze started, which also led to the explosion of the Bitcoin ecosystem.

On February 1, Bitcoin mining company Luxor said it had mined the largest Bitcoin block ever, with a block size of 3.96 MB, slightly below Bitcoin’s 4 MB limit. The block contains an NFT based on the original magic internet money meme called Taproot Wizards.

Bitcoin ecosystem developers such as Luke Dashjr believe that this will cause the size of the Bitcoin blockchain to rapidly expand, and the equipment requirements for running full nodes will increase significantly, resulting in fewer full nodes on the entire network and reduced censorship resistance. At the same time, unexpectedly huge transactions and huge blocks will impact ecological facilities such as wallets, mining pools, and browsers, causing abnormalities in some facilities, such as certain transactions failing to be parsed normally. In addition, in order to reduce the time to synchronize and verify huge transactions and blocks, mining pools or miners may choose not to download and generate blocks without verifying the transactions and blocks, posing security risks.

They even severely criticized Taproot Wizard for this behavior, saying: This is an attack on Bitcoin. Bitcoin blocks have a 1M limit. Taproot Wizards 4M data is put on the chain in witness, and blocks and transactions are bypassed. After the 1 M limit, 4 M is fine, and 400 M is fine! In this sense, this is not an innovation, but an attack on vulnerabilities!”

On February 28 this year, Luke Dashjr stated on social media that an auction website was using his name and code to create and sell misleading NFTs without his consent. Screenshots show that the NFT, which contains an image of the code he wrote, was sold on the auction site for 0.41 Bitcoin.

I am not involved in the creation and sale of this or any other NFT, and I do not consent to my code or my name being used for this purpose. Luke Dashjr clarified on Twitter that worsened the criticism, Due to the misrepresentations involved and Due to the actual buyers confusion, I strongly request that 100% of the auction proceeds be returned to the buyer.

It can be seen that Luke Dashjr is a developer who has almost obsessive and high requirements for the healthy ecosystem of Bitcoin. Dashjr believes that Ordinals are not just spam that clogs the network, they are also an attack on the fungibility of Bitcoin, and if accepted, their existence will destroy the Lightning Network and CoinJoin.

Can you make the inscription disappear? How much permission do Bitcoin Core developers have?

And this is also the most unacceptable result for Bitcoin maximalists. In May, Luke Dashjr wrote on his Github account that he was very annoyed by the hype of BRC-20 and meme coins. To address Ordinals, corrective measures need to be taken immediately, and these measures should have been provided long ago.

Can you make the inscription disappear? How much permission do Bitcoin Core developers have?

Luke Dashjr GitHub interface; Source: Community

In an email to other Bitcoin developers and miners, Dashjr proposed integrating a spam filtering mechanism into Taproot transactions in order to prevent the proliferation of Ordinals and BRC-20 tokens on the Bitcoin network. He stated that “action should have been taken months ago. Spam filtering has always been a standard part of Bitcoin Core. It is a mistake that the existing filters are not extended to Taproot transactions, because this is a bug fix and does not actually need to wait for the main version released.

In Dashjrs view, people can own NFTs and collectibles on Bitcoin without sending spam or attacking the network. Taproot actually makes this easier. On the Bitcointalk forum, many people discussed taking a soft fork to enforce strict Taproot verification script size, how the protocol filters what they consider to be spam, and even taking a hard fork to revoke Taproot. But how easy is it for a Bitcoin hard fork?

Do developers have the final say in the development of Bitcoin?

Before describing the two questions Who needs to nod for a piece of code to be merged into the Bitcoin code base? and Who controls the Bitcoin core code base?, one thing that needs to be made clear is how does one control a GitHub? Code library.

For the GitHub code base of open source projects, developers with these two permissions have the greatest power, namely merging code permissions and submitting permissions.

Having permission to merge code means that their key is added to the trusted keys list on GitHub, giving them specific permissions. For the Bitcoin Core project, when a developers key is added to this list, they gain the ability to merge code. This means they can merge code changes that have already been reviewed and approved into the Bitcoin Core code base.

Therefore, having the ability to merge code means they can have a direct impact on the final version of the Bitcoin Core software. This is a recognition of developer trust and responsibility, as the ability to merge code allows them to directly influence the final version of the Bitcoin software. Developers with this access are typically experienced and reputable contributors who are required to follow strict quality control and review processes when merging code.

The difference between code submission rights and merge code rights is that merge rights allow developers to decide which code will eventually be included in the main branch of the project. So while committing permissions is an important milestone, merging permissions plays a more critical role in the decision-making of the project and the shaping of the final product. Both are important, but combined authority is often viewed as the most senior authority in terms of influence and responsibility.

Who controls Bitcoin’s core code

Can anyone merge the code into Bitcoin Cores GitHub repository?

Among Bitcoin Core developers, developers who have direct permission to merge and modify the Bitcoin code base are usually maintainers or long-term contributors to the project. For example, Wladimir J. van der Laan, as one of the main maintainers of the project, has the authority to merge the code.

Among the five previous developers with the highest authority in the Bitcoin code base, Pieter Wuille and Marco Falke left on July 8, 2022 and February 23, 2023 respectively, giving up their maintenance rights and requesting from trusted sources through Bitcoin GitHub. The key set removed their keys.

Can you make the inscription disappear? How much permission do Bitcoin Core developers have?

After the departure of Pieter Wuille and Marco Falke, currently only three Bitcoin Core developers, Wladimir J. van der Laan, Michael Ford and Hennadii Stepanov, have the authority to modify the Bitcoin Core code.

However, although these developers have permission to merge code, they typically follow a rigorous code review and community consensus process. Their job is more about coordinating and reviewing contributions than making changes unilaterally. The Bitcoin community places a high value on consensus and transparency, and any major code changes will be widely discussed and reviewed within the community.

When a piece of code is merged into the Bitcoin code base, who needs to “nod”?

For a piece of code to be merged into the Bitcoin code base, it needs to go through a rigorous and detailed process, which ensures the quality of the proposal and the consensus of the community. Here are the main steps of this process:

1. Write proposal and code: First, developers need to write a detailed proposal document. This document should clearly describe the motivation for the proposal, technical details, impact assessment, and any potential issues or challenges.

2. Community discussion: After the code proposal is submitted to the Bitcoin community, community members (including developers, miners, investors, and users) will discuss and review it. This stage is key to ensuring the feasibility of the proposal and gathering feedback.

3. Modifications and improvements: Based on feedback from the community, the author of the code may need to modify and improve the proposal.

4. Vote and reach consensus: For some important improvements (especially those involving changes to the Bitcoin protocol itself), community members need to reach a certain degree of consensus. This usually involves support from miners, who need to show their support for the proposal by including a specific signal in the blocks they mine.

5. Code implementation: Once consensus is reached, the code will be reviewed by the Bitcoin Core developer team. This step is required to ensure the quality and security of the code.

6. Merge into the code base: After passing the review, the code will be merged into the official code base of Bitcoin.

7. Deployment and activation: Finally, the new code needs to be deployed by miners and node operators into their systems. For protocol-level changes, there is usually an activation threshold, and improvements will only take effect when enough network participants upgrade to the new version.

Judging from past block size wars, no single individual or entity can directly confirm and decide whether a BIP has reached consensus or can be merged into the code base. Rather, it is a process that is shared by the Bitcoin community and includes collaboration and consensus from multiple key groups in addition to developers and reviewers:

Especially for miners, their support can be said to be decisive for those BIP proposals involving protocol changes. Miners express their support for BIP by including specific signals in the blocks they mine. If a certain threshold of miners do not choose to support the proposal, this is generally not considered consensus.

Full node operators also play an important role in the consensus formation process. They express their support by upgrading to software versions that support the new BIP. The increase in the number of nodes indicates the broad acceptance of the proposal by the community. In addition, although Bitcoin users and community members are not directly involved in the decision-making of code mergers, their opinions and discussions are crucial to forming consensus, and they can express their opinions through community forums, mailing lists, and social media platforms.

Is Bitcoin returning to its 2017 fork moment?

Of course, as mentioned above, the most influential among them are miners.

Although miners do not have permission to manage the Bitcoin Core code, they do own the mining machines, and miners decide which version of the Bitcoin software their mining machines run. Moreover, the group of miners is getting larger and larger, and they have the ability to compete with developers. In 2015, some Bitcoin Core developers proposed to change the upper limit of block size from 1 M to 2 M. However, this proposal was rejected by Chinese miners because Chinas bandwidth was insufficient to support 2 M blocks. Miners are the service providers in this system. They package every Bitcoin transfer so that the Bitcoin system can operate normally. It can be said that they occupy a very important position.

And of course there is the day that goes down in history as the most famous hard fork in the Bitcoin community. At 8 pm on August 1, 2017, the fork led by BCH miners began. They implemented the hard fork from block height 478558. Six hours later, the ViaBTC microbit mining pool mined the first BCH. Block, Bitcoin Cash was officially born.

Even if a hard fork occurs, everyone will use their real money to vote for a Bitcoin that meets everyones expectations. Therefore, although Bitcoin Core developers have code management rights, due to the open source nature of Bitcoin software and the decentralization of Bitcoin, no one team or person can fully control Bitcoin.

The miners wallets are untouchable

To put it bluntly, it is impossible for miners to make the inscription disappear.

As the third largest mining pool operator, the voice of Shenyu, the co-founder of F2Pool, has always been regarded as representing the position of miners. After Luke Dashjr said that Inscription used Bitcoin Core vulnerabilities to send spam information to the blockchain, Shenyu He has made his own comments many times in the community: Bitcoin is not Ethereum, and it doesnt matter what the developers say.

Can you make the inscription disappear? How much permission do Bitcoin Core developers have?

It is reported that in the ranking of Bitcoin mining pool computing power, Foundry USA, which ranks first, is a supporter of Luke Dashjr, but AntPool, which ranks second, and ViaBTC, which ranks fourth, have always opposed Luke Dashjr. Therefore, F2 Pool, which ranks third, has position appears to be crucial.

In the previous bull market, there was no need to worry about the profits earned by miners. But in a bear market, miners profits look a bit bleak.

In June 2022, the average daily income of Bitcoin miners was only US$27.19 million. Compared with the average daily income of miners in November 2021 of approximately US$62 million, the current average daily income of Bitcoin miners has dropped by 56%. Due to the unsatisfactory income of miners, the computing power level of the entire Bitcoin network was also affected. At that time, the BTC computing power dropped by more than 10%, and the number of blocks generated per hour also decreased to 5.85 BTC.

Whats more, with the halving of the Bitcoin block reward in 2024, if the price trend of BTC is not good, Bitcoin miners will face potential profitability problems.

However, the emergence of BRC-20 and the booming inscription trading have given miners a considerable increase in handling fees in the context of an uncertain bear market. Mining machines have also become easier to sell, and they are the direct beneficiaries.

On-chain data shows that the average transaction fee per transaction for BRC-20 BTC transactions began to increase significantly in May, rising from an initial US$2 to a high of US$31. According to data from The Block Pro, the revenue of Bitcoin miners increased by 30.1% to US$1.15 billion in November. According to data from Blockworks Research, a record 8.34 million Ordinals-related transactions occurred in November, creating approximately 3870 million for Bitcoin miners. million dollars in revenue.

Can you make the inscription disappear? How much permission do Bitcoin Core developers have?

Bitcoin miner fees in 2023; Source: BitlnfoCharts

Mati Greenspan, Bitcoin OG, former eToro executive and founder of Quantum Economics, said in an interview with the media: I talked to a miner yesterday and he said his income doubled, which is good, especially after the halving. Before, so this is beneficial to the miners. Obviously, as the biggest beneficiaries after the explosion of the Bitcoin ecosystem, the miners are holding on to their own money bags and will definitely not let the inscription disappear in the Bitcoin ecosystem.

To defend the inscription, what voices do the community have?

Luke Dashjr’s words sparked a wave of discussion in the community.

The mainstream view in the Chinese community is that the explosion of the Bitcoin ecosystem has caused miners income to soar, and miners dominate the BTC ecosystem. Asian inscriptions are popular, American miners are making a lot of money, European and American developers do not recognize it, and European and American developers and European and American miners are not allowed to fight. Get up. Most people were watching the next developments with a theatrical mentality.

Founder of SlowMist Technology@evilcosThinking that there is no need to fix this bug, he said, “The impact of accidentally opening this magic box due to the introduction of Taproot (a good thing) is not only piles of Spam, but also the activeness of the Bitcoin ecosystem, which is not just about serial numbers/ This set of inscriptions. Of course, if this is fixed, there can be a compatibility solution to better open up the Bitcoin ecosystem, and the long-term pain will be worse than the short-term pain.

crypto analyst@thecryptoskandaIn the comment section of Luke Dashjr’s tweet, he said, “We don’t see Satoshi Nakamoto’s vision here. All we see is an awakened developer trying to place his pathological good or bad Walkerist values ​​over Satoshi Nakamoto’s original On top of the consensus. How can you still call Bitcoin the most decentralized currency after this?”

Can you make the inscription disappear? How much permission do Bitcoin Core developers have?

Affected by the recent enthusiasm for inscriptions, the Chinese community’s views on Luke Dashjr are more of a disapproval attitude. Crypto KOL@ 11 dizhuHe said, No one can represent Bitcoin. You have your own ideas, and others have other peoples ideas. Hard forks are really not possible.

In the English community, many people say that the current Bitcoin network is severely congested and users need to pay very high gas fees. They bluntly said, I hope developers can find a way to fix the loopholes that are being exploited. Cryptozoologist@Elder 24601 Calling Inscription some kind of dust attack can be fixed by increasing the default threshold (currently 546 sats).

Some crypto users commented that they supported Luke Dashjr’s censorship because they missed the entire BRC-20 outbreak.

Can you make the inscription disappear? How much permission do Bitcoin Core developers have?

As mentioned earlier, this is not the first time that the crypto community has disputed the existence of Ordinals NFT and BRC-20, and opposition voices at that time believed that if Ordinals continued to have a huge impact on the Bitcoin network, they could choose to fork Bitcoin. to modify or remove Taproot options.

In May of this year, DeFi Watch founder Chris Blec said that if enough Bitcoin ecosystem participants (users, node operators, miners) reach a consensus that Bitcoin should fork in a way to reduce spam transactions, then it is not Censorship. You can still mine and use the current fork and cast your stupid jpgs there.

Can you make the inscription disappear? How much permission do Bitcoin Core developers have?

Behind these debates are not only differences about technology, but also about the purpose of Bitcoin and the philosophical concepts behind it. Governance of decentralized open source projects remains a challenge.

We all know that Bitcoin does not have a single real controller. Bitcoin’s governance structure consists of users who pay transaction fees, miners who build the Bitcoin blockchain, and node operators who verify the transaction ledger. This decentralized structure ensures the security and decentralization of Bitcoin to a certain extent, but it also creates governance challenges. Needless to say, the position of the miners is more based on the incentive level. They choose the consensus on the future of Bitcoin based on the incentives they receive.

Despite Luke Dashjr’s clear stance, it is clear that the Bitcoin community has different voices regarding the future of Inscription, and the power of Bitcoin Core developers cannot make Inscription disappear.

Even in the worst-case scenario, the Bitcoin community may once again face a fork event similar to 2017. But community members have now gained valuable experience and insight compared to those years ago. This time, everyone will come with a deeper understanding and more mature strategies to deal with the challenges that may arise.

Defend or Sacrifice inscription? The story of Bitcoin is far from over.

Original article, author:区块律动BlockBeats。Reprint/Content Collaboration/For Reporting, Please Contact;Illegal reprinting must be punished by law.

ODAILY reminds readers to establish correct monetary and investment concepts, rationally view blockchain, and effectively improve risk awareness; We can actively report and report any illegal or criminal clues discovered to relevant departments.

Recommended Reading
Editor’s Picks