Kaspa ($KAS) Overview: What is it and How Does it Work?

Discover Kaspa, a Layer-1 blockchain project that's revolutionizing the crypto industry with its unique consensus mechanism and scalability.

Jul 25, 2023 - 18:02
Oct 19, 2023 - 16:20
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Kaspa ($KAS) Overview: What is it and How Does it Work?
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Kaspa, launched in 2021, is a Layer-1 blockchain that uses the proof-of-work consensus mechanism. Unlike traditional PoW blockchains, Kaspa is extremely fast, suggesting that its creators, led by Yonatan Somplinsky, have come close to solving the blockchain trilemma.

KAS is the project’s native currency and is used for all on-chain transactions and to distribute mining rewards. Unlike tokens, KAS is a Layer-1 coin, reinforcing the decentralized nature of the Kaspa blockchain.

How Does Kaspa Work?

Kaspa is currently considered to be the fastest PoW blockchain. A single block containing about 200 transactions is mined an average of once every second, and it takes no more than 10 seconds to confirm transactions. But how does Kaspa achieve such high speeds?

To achieve these high speeds using PoW, the creators of Kaspa came up with the idea of storing data on something called a blockDAG, or a directed acyclic graph of blocks. The GHOSTDAG protocol is responsible for reaching consensus, while PoW ensures on-chain security.

BlockDAG: Unlike traditional blockchains where blocks are added linearly, Kaspa has no direct sequence of blocks. The blockDAG allows miners to work in parallel and, when blocks with conflicting transactions appear, they are added to a directed acyclic graph (DAG) instead of being discarded. This system means that miners can work in parallel, and the network doesn’t need to expend resources on removing invalid chains.

GHOSTDAG Protocol: The GHOSTDAG protocol brings order to the blockDAG by assigning indexes to blocks and using special rules. These rules ensure that blocks are ordered correctly, preventing the same transaction from appearing in the blockchain twice.

Why is Kaspa Special?

The most obvious difference between Kaspa and traditional blockchains is their use of GHOSTDAG, a proof-of-work consensus protocol. Instead of orphaning blocks created in parallel, GHOSTDAG allows these blocks to coexist and orders them in consensus.

This process also allows Kaspa to circumvent the "traditional security-scalability-decentralization tradeoff" of blockchains by allowing them to improve on block rates, all whilst maintaining the "security guarantees of Bitcoin". Kaspa prides itself in being a community project - KAS was distributed via fair launch, and the project’s marketing materials maintain that Kaspa is a fully community-governed and community-funded project.

This community-centric approach has fostered a growing community of believers and investors who see potential in the platform’s unique consensus approach and its native token’s performance.

The price of KAS, the native token of the Kaspa network, has been on an upward trajectory, reaching 4 cents and edging close to a new all-time high. This development has caught the attention of crypto enthusiasts and investors who are closely monitoring its performance.

The anticipation surrounding Kaspa is further amplified by speculation about the launch of smart contracts on the platform. Such speculation adds fuel to the fire, driving discussions within the crypto community about the potential impact of the smart contract integration on Kaspa’s market position and the broader cryptocurrency market.

Despite being in a bear market, Kaspa has shown remarkable resilience, leading some to predict further growth. As the crypto market continues to evolve, it remains to be seen how Kaspa will fare in the long term. 

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