Bare metal podcast with Bo: Osmosis <> Polymer <> Base explained

@morue on Discord raised this question:

I watched Bo Du’s video in the “Bare Metal Podcast” channel that Rahil sent.I think the virtual commitment issue is proceeding with the logic of a pawnshop.The communication between Base and Osmosis will be handled by Polymer, which provides virtual commitment through IBC.Base will send the information to Polymer.Osmosis will ask Polymer, not Base, to verify the information.In this way, IBC will reliably perform the communication between different networks.Do I understand correctly?

Reference to podcast:


Yes, that’s correct. Between Osmosis and Polymer (both having a native IBC implementation) you’d have a regular IBC connection. Base however, does not at the moment have a native IBC implementation which is why Polymer runs their IBC load on its behalf through our solution called “virtual IBC”.

Check out the docs here to learn more:


For example, Osmosis has a vulnerability, Osmosis didn’t know about it, so the malicious person communicated with Base through IBC using Polymer and the fraud took place. What is Polymer’s responsibility here?


So Polymer essentially provides permissionless integration with the IBC network to consumer chains, we call them virtual chains. Anyone could create IBC connections to any supported chain with different security vs latency trade-offs.

In other words, it would be the responsibility of the IBC application developers to ensure they are using underlying IBC connections that match their security needs.

Of course, this is also a concern in the wider IBC community, for example Osmosis developed “IBC rate limiting middleware” that can reduce the effects a potential compromise could have. (Effectively putting a cap on the volume on a specified time interval).

Additionally, the design of IBC provides the opportunity for fault isolation by providing a channel for every application to send packets over. For example, if someone DDOSing one particular channel, that doesn’t necessarily affect other channels.


I’m glad you appreciated the explanation, and it’s great to hear that you’re excited about Polymer’s idea. I wish you success with your interest in Polymer!

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