As a matter of transparency and of user and community education, I think it is important to properly catalog and make public the side-tangle-to-tangle stitching process that has been conducted by either the IOTA Foundation (IF) or a private party.

As the IF has publicly stated, there are not many concerns with the side-tangle as stated in a Medium blog entry by Lewis Freiberg of the IOTA foundation, “What’s up with the Tangle?”, then there should be no need for secrecy or confidentiality with this information—especially for a network that is aiming for eventual full-decentralization.

What is the stitching process?

  • Who is doing the stitching?

  • If this is not the IF, then who, and are they doing this in cooperation with the IF?

  • How are the nodes for stitching selected?

  • What is the exact process undertaken?

For all developers in the community, the sharing of the process would be immensely useful and helpful.

  • Hi Saint Hill, are you sure you had the correct link? The linked blog did not have the title you had in your question. I edited to match what you linked. If you wanted to link something different please correct that.
    – Helmar
    Jul 21, 2018 at 7:40

1 Answer 1


This is my speculation on how it is done. Due to the fact that the algorithm is randomized and I am not involved in the process, it may as well be a different algorithm.

  • I don't know who is doing the stitching. The network is quite anonmyous, and the only thing I can say that it is somebody who is running a spammer and has modified the tip selection algorithm. Probably it is the same party that is responsible for the side tangle, probably it is someone completely different that shares the motive of confusing users and/or causing disruption in the network. Maybe some people discussing this Github issue participated in the stitching as well.

  • Likely this is not in cooperation with the IOTA foundation. Parasite chains harm least when they are not connected back, and also permanodes that only keep confirmed transactions will have a smaller database in case the (not confirmed) side tangle is not stitched back. Not to forget the confusion of users which might negatively affect IOTA's reputation. But nobody knows (unless they write here and tell us).

  • My guess is that the tip selection algorithm is changed to do a MCMC random walk from a random (or maybe fixed) node from the side tangle (selected by address), and another MCMC random walk from a recent milestone. When you use these two tips for a new transaction, it will be a "guaranteed stitch".

  • Modify a node (or client library) to perform this modified tip selection algorithm, then "connect" a spammer (there are off-the-shelf spamming tools, or write one yourself) to your modified node/client library. Make sure you have a bit of hashpower so you can spam fast (or have multiple spammers). Wait and watch your work (if you are curious).

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