52 episodes

Block Shots provides a basic understanding of the most important blockchain concepts in five minutes. Learn about blocks, transactions, consensus, finality, governance, etc. and many more fundamentals while having your morning coffee, commuting, or whenever you’ve got a moment.

episodes.blockshots.fm

Block Shots - Blockchain in 5 minutes‪!‬ Gautam Dhameja

    • Technology

Block Shots provides a basic understanding of the most important blockchain concepts in five minutes. Learn about blocks, transactions, consensus, finality, governance, etc. and many more fundamentals while having your morning coffee, commuting, or whenever you’ve got a moment.

episodes.blockshots.fm

    Episode 52 - Maximal Extractable Value (MEV)

    Episode 52 - Maximal Extractable Value (MEV)

    In this episode, we cover Maximal Extractable Value (MEV) and how it works.
    Miners or Validators are responsible for selecting and including the transactions in a block. They are free to choose any transactions from the mempool. Miners can choose not to select certain transactions. They can also manipulate the order of transactions. This leads to MEV.
    Music: https://www.purple-planet.com


    This is a public episode. If you would like to discuss this with other subscribers or get access to bonus episodes, visit episodes.blockshots.fm

    • 5 min
    Episode 51 - Censorship Resistance

    Episode 51 - Censorship Resistance

    In this episode, we cover what makes Blockchains and decentralized systems censorship resistant.
    Centralized systems are owned or controlled by organizations. They could limit the usage of some actors depending on local laws.
    Decentralized systems are not controlled by any single party. They are made equal for everyone, based on the rules of the network. No local laws apply. 
    Users could send their transaction to several nodes, and one of them would include it in a block. No user is disallowed to use the system.
    Music: https://www.purple-planet.com


    This is a public episode. If you would like to discuss this with other subscribers or get access to bonus episodes, visit episodes.blockshots.fm

    • 4 min
    Episode 50 - Zero Knowledge Proofs

    Episode 50 - Zero Knowledge Proofs

    Blockchains are built for transparency and verifiability. Most of the data on a blockchain is publicly verifiable. For example, all transactions sent to bitcoin are public and anyone could query the balance of any account. Generally, this is not an issue because blockchain accounts are random strings and it is not easy to link an account to a human. This property of blockchains is also called pseudo anonymity. 
    However, sometimes we need privacy on blockchains for some use cases. For example, let’s say two supply chain participants want to transact over a blockchain and they don’t want to disclose their vendor costs to other participants who could be their competitors. In such a scenario, we need a way to hide data on the blockchain. Zero-knowledge proofs are one way of doing it.
    Zero-knowledge proofs allow a prover to prove that they have some data without disclosing the actual data itself.
    Music: https://www.purple-planet.com


    This is a public episode. If you would like to discuss this with other subscribers or get access to bonus episodes, visit episodes.blockshots.fm

    • 4 min
    Episode 49 - Light Clients

    Episode 49 - Light Clients

    In the episode 3 of the podcast, I covered different kind of blockchain nodes and one of them is light client. In this episode, I’ll cover light clients in a bit more detail. 
    Light clients are special in the sense that they allow more decentralization. Unlike full nodes, light clients do not process all the transactions and blocks. They only synchronize block headers and are much light in terms of resource usage. Any user could run a light client without using any specialized hardware or servers. 
    Music: https://www.purple-planet.com


    This is a public episode. If you would like to discuss this with other subscribers or get access to bonus episodes, visit episodes.blockshots.fm

    • 4 min
    Episode 48 - Blockchain Bridges

    Episode 48 - Blockchain Bridges

    There are different blockchains built to serve different kind of users and use-cases. Bitcoin is for peer to peer transfer of currency while Ethereum is a smart contracts platform. Flow is for NFTs while ZCash is for private transactions. What if applications and users on these blockchains need to interact or integrate with each other?
    Imagine a use-case where a smart contract on Ethereum, on successful execution, needs to transfer some bitcoin from one account to another on the Bitcoin blockchain.
    This is where blockchain bridges come into the picture. Bridge allow message passing between two blockchains. Using a bridge, a user on one blockchain could move their assets or token to an account on a different blockchain. The way it works is by locking or burning assets on the source chain and then minting them on the destination chain. The communication to mint the assets on the destination chain is done via messages sent over bridges.
    Simply put, bridges deploy smart contracts on both source and destination chains and have message relayer software in between the two chains. The user takes action on the source chain smart contract which emits an event. Based on the event the message relayer relays a message to the destination chain. The smart contract on the destination chain then executes the logic on the destination chain based on the message received.
    Bridges have different kinds of security models. Trusted and trustless. In trusted bridges, some third parties operate relayer nodes and bridging smart contracts on either side. The users and DApps have to rely on the honesty of these third parties. In trustless bridges, the state of either side (chains) is verified using smart contracts and the dependency on third parties is minimal.
    Music: https://www.purple-planet.com


    This is a public episode. If you would like to discuss this with other subscribers or get access to bonus episodes, visit episodes.blockshots.fm

    • 4 min
    Episode 47 - Lifecycle of a Block

    Episode 47 - Lifecycle of a Block

    A block is a collection of transactions and some metadata. Let’s take a look at how a block is produced. Let’s just assume that according to the algorithm we already have the node (validator or miner) selected to produce the next block. 
    The first thing that this block producer node would do is to choose which block to build on. Remember blockchain is a chain of blocks. For each new block we need to refer to the hash of the previous block. Hence, the node would first choose or select which block to build on. Recall that all nodes in a blockchain store all the data about the state of the blockchain. So, the node would just pick the hash of the latest block from its local state.
    Next, the node would pick the transactions waiting in its transaction queue or mem-pool and create a new block by ordering and packaging them together. This process is call block building. The output would be a block — a data object with metadata and a list of included transactions.
    Once the block is built, it is then broadcasted on the peer-to-peer network for other nodes to download and verify it. The details of broadcast and propagation are depend on the specific implementation of networking protocol for different blockchains. Each node in the network then verifies the block by executing all the transactions in it. If they find everything ok, they update their local state based on the transactions in the block. And the block is added to the chain.
    This is how a fully decentralized network of nodes updates the state of a distributed ledger.
    The next block is the built on top of this block, and the process continues. 
    Music: https://www.purple-planet.com


    This is a public episode. If you would like to discuss this with other subscribers or get access to bonus episodes, visit episodes.blockshots.fm

    • 4 min

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