ALEX Lab Foundation: Moving towards decentralized indexing, building the first trustless on-chain indexer for BRC.
ALEX Lab Foundation is building the first trustless on-chain indexer for BRC, moving towards decentralized indexing.
Creator of BRC20 token standard, domodata, joins ALEX Lab Foundation’s advisory committee to guide the construction of the first trustless on-chain indexer. They co-authored an article analyzing the importance of on-chain indexing, the nature of trustless decentralization, and the plan to achieve this goal.
BRC20 was established only three months ago and is still a new token standard that relies on centralized indexers to maintain global balance status. The BRC20 index is a database that tracks wallets and holdings of BRC20 tokens. Those who establish and maintain this database are indexers. Bitcoin is not a “virtual machine” like Ethereum’s L1. The scope of Bitcoin’s smart contracts is limited to “send” and “receive” transactions. It is impossible to fully express the smart contract capabilities to implement decentralized applications on the Bitcoin core protocol.
At the time of publication of this article, the market value of $ORDI was close to $200 million. What prevents malicious users from attempting to deploy and forge $ORDI again if the inscription is just a text file? This is why indexers are crucial to the BRC20 infrastructure. If there is no on-chain code to create an error “error: $ORDI already exists,” then it is up to the BRC20 market indexers to determine whether $ORDI is genuine or counterfeit. Without indexers, there is no market, only text files that are almost indistinguishable from chaos.
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To ensure the long-term survival and growth of the BRC20 community, it is essential to focus on building a decentralized indexer that is universally accessible and immutable. This decentralized on-chain indexer can work with off-chain indexers to provide a single source of truth based on immutable proofs and verifiable smart contract logic. The ALEX team, along with thought leaders from Stacks, is building a universal and immutable indexer, and the first version will be released in the coming months. Through transparent smart contracts, as the BRC20 standard matures and develops, it is possible to begin minimizing the “trust” required for off-chain indexers to realize its full potential.