- Ethereum is far ahead of Bitcoin in terms of having a Turing-complete smart contract.
- Bitcoin is using the Bitcoin Script to create necessary agreements.
- Bitcoin cash is also working towards improving its smart contract functions.
Ethereum is far ahead of Bitcoin in terms of having a Turing-complete smart contract even though Bitcoin is using the Bitcoin Script to create necessary agreements. Bitcoin cash is also working towards improving its smart contract functions.
All these platforms have their methods and advantages. This article aims to understand the prominent differences between their functioning and features:
Ethereum, the largest smart contract platform, is implemented using the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM), which can calculate anything when enough resources are available. This Turing complete virtual machine’s quick contract code is executed by all Ethereum nodes, thus ensuring the validity of the transaction.
As a reward, all Ethereum opcodes have their respective gas costs, which paid with ETH. The ‘block gas limit’ is used to limit the number of calculations each node performs. The contract s stored in 3 different data locations during implementation – stack, contact memory, and ultimately contact storage.
Several high-level languages like Solidity used for writing smart contracts. Vyper used for EVM. Ethereum allows two different ways to interact with smart contracts: by the ‘read-only’ process of calls and the real write operation of Transactions.
Another feature is that even though intelligent contracts can communicate with each other, they require an external account to trigger the transaction. The Turing complete EVM and persistent storage of Ethereum aides in the creation of a decentralized application which runs on blockchain.
Bitcoin uses the stack-based programming language, ScriptScript, to support all its transactions. These stacks are used to store values and perform calculations.
There is only one data location here as compared to three in Ethereum, making it difficult to store multiple values and modify them during contract execution. This is the most significant difference between the two platforms’ smart contracts. Ethereum is stateful and Bitcoin is stateless.
Further, the Bitcoin script cannot support specific functions and has an ultimate size limit of 520 bytes and can contain a maximum of 2091 opcodes. Smart contracts in Bitcoin belong to several simple contract types like HTLC or multi-signature deal.
Every transaction is realized through the “transaction output”. When these are available in the account, they are called unused transaction outputs (UTXOs) which is locked by a lock script, or scriptPubKey. The smart contract is written using the P2H model.
Bitcoin pays less attention to using high-level languages, and even though the ScriptScript itself is complex, the language they wrote in is simple. Ivy is its most refined ‘high level of language.’ Bitcoin is currently working on creating abstract complexity.
Bitcoin cash works towards making smart contracts more useful while still retaining the primary attributes of Bitcoin and allow the performing of stateless verification. Bitcoin Cash releases bi-annual upgrades, which usually released in May and November.
Many improvements, such as Schnorr signatures, have introduced through this. The developers of Bitcoin Cash resolved issues of unsafe opcodes and made it possible to encode and decode structured data.
Another update, OP_CHECKDATASIG helped users to verify the signature of any message in Bitcoin Script. It is currently working on two large projects Spedn and CashScript . These tools are under development and make smart contracts easy to process.