Basic Principles of PlatDot Cross-chain

3 min readApr 20, 2021

What is PlatDot?

In the field of blockchain, a bridge is a connection that allows tokens or arbitrary data to be transferred from one blockchain network to another blockchain network. Cross-chain refers to the use of bridges to transfer tokens or arbitrary data from one block to another. The chain state is transmitted to another network. The two chains can have different protocols, rules, communities, and governance models, but the bridge provides a compatible way to safely interoperate between the two parties.

PlatDot is such a bridge connecting the distributed privacy AI network PlatON and the Polkadot ecology.

The basic principle of PlatDot cross-chain

Bridges usually have different designs and are usually divided into two camps: bridges that rely on trust or alliances and are more concentrated, and bridges that are more decentralized and “trustless”.

The first stage of PlatDot: Witness mechanism (relying on a certain level of trust)

The cross-chain approach through witnesses is a typical representative of relying on trust. The notary mechanism is also called the witness mechanism. The notary mechanism is essentially an intermediary method. Specifically, assuming that the blockchains A and B themselves cannot directly interoperate, they can introduce a mutually trusted third party as an intermediary, and the mutually trusted intermediary will verify and forward cross-chain messages. The advantage of the notary mechanism is that it can flexibly support various blockchains of different structures (provided that the notary can access the information on the chain of related parties), but the disadvantage is that there is a risk of centralization.

The second stage of PlatDot: cross-chain (no trust required)

Compared with the witness mechanism, relaying cross-chain is undoubtedly a higher-level method. The relay cross-chain has all the advantages of the witness mechanism and makes up for any shortcomings of the witness mechanism. It is the most ideal cross-chain method. Through the relay client, everyone can submit block headers to light nodes and submit cross-chain messages for rewards. Through light nodes, transactions on another chain can be easily verified. Using a relaying cross-chain, users can enjoy extremely low handling fees and extremely fast cross-chain transaction processing speed, completely decentralized and trustless. However, the overall difficulty of relay cross-chain realization is the highest.

The significance of PlatDot cross-chain

Cross-chain is just a means of communication between chains. The sole purpose of cross-chain is to integrate the resources of different blockchains, allowing different assets and different communities to communicate efficiently, providing more possibilities, generating more value, and realizing a better future. Therefore, only a cross-chain interconnection is not enough, because cross-chain is only a requirement of communication technology, and it is a kind of infrastructure.

Why did PlatDot choose to cross-chain in two completely different ways?

Security, efficiency, and scalability are the unbreakable triangles in the blockchain. This is a well-known thesis of distributed systems. If we look at this issue from a future perspective, with the research on cross-chain technology and the improvement of infrastructure, we can continue to improve performance and will break through a zero point, meeting our needs. Just like the original Internet and computers, they can only meet the needs of a few people at first, but with the development of technology, they can finally meet the needs of most people.

PlatDot will not do something in the way of “guarding the present and waiting for the future”. Given its scale, it is not enough to only consider the realization of the technology. It is necessary to consider all aspects of the cost (including time cost, development cost, user cost, etc.). In many immature conditions, PlatDot chose the witness mode cross-chain approach. As time matures, PlatDot will evolve into a two-way light node + relay cross-chain approach.

About ChainX

ChainX, the earliest launched project in Polkadot’s ecosystem, is committed to the research and application of Bitcoin layer 2 expansion, digital asset gateway, and Polkadot second-layer relay chain, to realize cross-chain asset exchange, leading the new direction of Bitcoin Cross-DeFi.

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ChainX is a BTC Layer 2 solution compatible with EVM that utilizes Bitcoin as a gas fee, serving as the predecessor network of BEVM.