Ontology's New Multichain Design to Compete with Cosmos, Polkadot, and Plasma

The developers of Ontology, a blockchain-based “distributed trust” network for deploying decentralized applications (dApps), have argued that a single blockchain network cannot meet all types of business requirements.

Multiple Blockchains Are Needed For Different Business Requirements

As noted in a Medium blog post, published by the Ontology Team on May 17th, 2019, “blockchains with different architectures and features” are needed for various business use cases. Separate blockchain networks also need to communicate with each other and their “intended value” will not be “realized” if protocols are not developed to facilitate blockchain interoperability, Ontology’s developers wrote.

To facilitate communication between independent blockchains, Ontology’s team recommends creating a “multichain system.” To promote the development of such a system, the distributed trust network’s architects have released a design, or blueprint, for a “lightweight and safe” multichain solution which can manage cross-chain communication.

Allowing For Interaction Between Mainnet And Sidechains

As mentioned in Ontology Team’s blog, the solution will use the Ontology blockchain as its “main chain,” while integrating support for “side-chains whose architecture” is compatible with the Ontology mainnet. This type of setup, the platform’s developers explained, will allow for interaction “between the main chain and side-chains, and also between side-chains.”

A multichain contract will be issued (by the main network), in order to manage all sidechains that are linked to Ontology’s main blockchain, the Ontology team noted. Moreover, the "cross-chain interaction between source chain and target chain” is also performed by issuing a cross-chain management contract, Ontology’s developers explained.

The “proof of cross-chain interaction” is carried out by “synchronizing key block headers and other state information,” Ontology’s blog stated.

Comparing Ontology's Design With Other Blockchain Interoperability Platforms

Going on to compare Ontology with the other major platforms which aim to provide blockchain interoperability, the distributed trust network’s developers mentioned that Plasma, Cosmos, and Polkadot do not support “sidechain to sidechain crosschain” communication - whereas Ontology’s proposed solution does.

Moreover, Ontology and Polkadot’s cross-chain infrastructure supports “all information” whereas Plasma, designed by Vitalik Buterin and Joseph Poon, and Cosmos are only able to support “all assets.”

Notably, Ontology’s development team has already launched their cross-chain communication testnet. Developers of Cosmos, Polkadot, and Plasma have not yet released their cross-chain testnets, the Ontology team noted.