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The "hashgraph" is a data structure using a patented algorithm developed by Professor Leemon Baird. The hashgraph stores and updates information which allows a distributed and decentralised community to reach consensus between nodes/members in a fast (250,000 transactions per second) and secure (Strong Form Byzantine Fault Tolerant) way with mathematically proven fairness in the absolute ordering of transactions.
The data structure is a directed acyclic graph, where each vertex contains the hash of its two parent vertices. A hashgraph is updated by gossip where each member repeatedly chooses another member at random who gives them all the events that they don't yet know.
The hashgraph utilizes a protocol called "gossip about gossip" for information sharing. This means that part of the information transferred between members is an abbreviated history of how members have spoken to other members.
The information stored in a hashgraph is a history of how everyone gossiped. When Alice tells Bob everything she knows during a gossip sync, Bob creates a new block or "event" which commemorates the occurrence. The event becomes a vertex in the graph containing Bob's most recent event, the hash of Alice's most recent event, a timestamp, along with any new transactions that Bob wants to create at that moment. Combined, the hashgraph is the set of all known events. The hashgraph was first proposed in a white paper by Leemon Baird titled "The Swirlds Hashgraph Consensus Algorithm: Fair, Fast, Byzantine Fault Tolerance".
List of Hashgraph Implementations
- Baird, Leemon (May 31, 2016). "The Swirlds Hashgraph Consensus Algorithm". Tech Report. http://leemon.com/papers/2016b.pdf.
- "A New Approach to Consensus: Swirlds HashGraph" (in en-US). SAMMANTICS. http://sammantics.com/blog/2016/7/27/hashgraph-consensus.
- The Swirlds Hashgraph Consensus Algorithm: Fair, Fast, Byzantine Fault Tolerance