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Currently, all blockchain consensus protocols (eg. Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple, Tendermint) have a challenging limitation: every fully participating node in the network must process every transaction. Recall that blockchains have one inherent critical characteristic — “decentralization” — which means that every single node on the network processes every transaction and maintains a copy of the entire state.
While a decentralization consensus mechanism offers some critical benefits )fault tolerance, a strong guarantee of security, political neutrality, etc.) comes at the cost of scalability.
In traditional Proof-of-Work based blockchains, miners maintain the integrity of the blockchain data by racing to solve computation-intensive, Proof-of-work mathematical puzzles in exchange for rewards. In this regard, they help validate transactions with their CPU power, and the more CPU power you have the proportionately larger your ability to influence the network is. In Proof-of-Stake, stakeholders vote with their “dollars” instead of computing power.
Blockchain rent is a solution that aims to reduce the amount of data that is stored on the network in order to help speed up transaction times.
With Ethereum, users pay for computational steps, memory, transaction logs, and permanent storage. While most of these are resources are paid for in a properly incentivized manner, the claim here is that storage is not.
The basic premise here is that instead of nodes storing everything on the blockchain, they only store data that is more frequently requested locally and leave other data on the “cloud” via Swarm.
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