A Community-Led Discussion: Keep Cross Chain?

Members of our community discuss how the Keep Network and Keep providers can potentially work cross-chain.

Recently the Keep community brought up several great questions around multiple blockchains and whether or not Keep would work on or with these different providers. Below is this discussion. Please note that it is slightly condensed and edited for both privacy of our community members as well as for clarity. Enjoy!

Photo by Joshua Hoehne on Unsplash

Keep Community Member (KCM): Matt, there’s right now a lot of attention on NEO, Qtum, and ICON as smart contract blockchains. Stellar, EOS, IOTA, and Cardano have people looking at them, too, as ones who will eventually have smart contracts.

KCM: Don’t forget about rChain!

KCM: Also, OmiseGO’s plasma chains should probably be implemented this year.

KCM: Yeah. There’s a lot! VeChain, Ark, Dragonchain, Walton, rChain, aelf, HPB, etc. Also, Lisk

Matt: So many chains, but! I actually think the stuff behind Dfinity is interesting because… *drumroll*… we’re porting a lot of their work to ETH so the technical due diligence has been done. Definitely thinking ETH + Plasma will be amazing. Eventually, we’d like to see providers work cross-chain, and make money on whichever chain pays the best. We’ll also see some chains that are faster / provide other features. We are focused on ETH for the foreseeable future, though.

KCM: Matt, will there be different prices to access Keep from different chains?

Matt: It’ll be based on the chain-specific market. “Market” -> pricing is one-sided, but there’s still an implied market.

KCM: So, that means that one Keep can only service one chain? There won’t be a generalized Keep?

Matt: One keep, yes. One provider — I’d like to see the clients combined. One of the open questions is how staking can work cross-chain without skewing incentives or adding an attack vector. Probably 1:1 swaps between the chain-specific tokens. This has the benefit of inheriting Sybil resistance from the token on ETH, which should be a wider network, but we’ll see how everything goes. For some chains that might not be feasible.

KCM: If we have 1:1 swap between tokens and the # of keep tokens remain the same even with the addition of more chains, then if there’s a generalized Keep there would be unified pricing between chains.

Matt: Maybe. We’d need the minimum stake to remain the same every chain, but the underlying network (eg ADA) could be less favorable for whatever reason for providers making the client price on that chain higher.

KCM: I think in the future, blockchains that handle transactions between blockchains like ICON/Wanchain/Aion/Ark will be really important. And if you pick one of them as a main base, you’ll have the interface to interact with every other smart contract chain.

Matt: The problem with that is we’d rather not have the whole cross-chain network depend on a single chain. Plus picking any of these meta-chains right now is…gambling at best.

KCM: Regarding dependency on one chain, I think you’ll need to pick one chain to keep track of token supply. Is there a way around that?

Matt: Yep, with cross-chain swaps where the receiving side locks deposits. Alternatively, we could do some sort of airdrop for existing token holders with each new chain so the supply goes up and can float, no cross-chain, but it’s just “forked”, not actually inflation.

KCM: What do you mean by depending on a single chain? I think that’s my disconnect.

Matt: If we use a messaging chain as the “base” that controls token issuance or staking and that chain has an issue all other chains suffer versus treating them all as siblings- one goes down, the rest are fine.

KCM: That makes sense. Keep up the good work (I bet you hear that too much).

Matt: We like it!

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A Community-Led Discussion: Keep Cross Chain? was originally published in Keep Network on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

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