An Introduction To Casanova

Pyrofex introduces Casanova, a leaderless optimistic consensus protocol designed for use in the blockchain contexts. Casanova produces blocks in a directed acyclic graph (DAG) rather than in a chain and combines voting rounds with block production by singling out conflicting transactions. As a result, Casanova is poised to be one of the first provably safe, live, and correct consensus algorithms that can operate at global transaction scale. With Casanova, Pyrofex looks forward to unlocking the next generation of blockchain technology.

The Details

The problem of achieving consensus over asynchronous networks of distrustful parties has been a subject of research for decades. With the introduction of BitCoin, a new class of consensus algorithms emerged. These include proof of work (PoW), proof of stake (PoS), and proof of elapsed time (PoET) protocols, among others.

Proof of work algorithms are inherently inefficient because their security properties come from “wasted” computation, e.g. brute forcing hash pre-images. The blockchain community is naturally interested in finding reliable and scalable consensus algorithms suited to use in a proof of stake context.
To this end, Pyrofex developed Casanova: a leaderless optimistic consensus protocol optimized for the blockchain, but which borrows from pre-Nakamato consensus protocols. Casanova is appropriate for a proof-of-stake blockchain and a variety of additional applications. It shows that one can pipeline voting and message-passing rounds by combining block creation with votes, and optimizes for the overwhelmingly common case that a transaction is not a double spend.