One Small Change to Unlock Bitcoin’s Programming Potential: Stacks CEO

• Stacks CEO Muneeb Ali discussed Bitcoin’s application potential at Consensus 2023. He argued that a small change to Bitcoin’s base layer could unlock a vast array of applications.
• Ali noted that two OP codes, “OP STARK verify” and “OP SNARK verify”, would enable true “ZK rollups” – a layer two scaling solution for batching transactions.
• Stacks has developed a protocol called sBTC to bridge BTC from layer 1 to layer 2 chains in a relatively decentralized manner.

Consensus 2023: Unlocking Bitcoin’s Programming Potential

The CEO of Stacks, Muneeb Ali, spoke at Consensus 2023 about Bitcoin’s potential as a settlement layer and the revival of developer culture within the community. He believes that with very little modification to the Bitcoin base layer, it can unlock an array of applications by using ZK Rollups – a Layer 2 scaling solution for batching transactions.

Two OP Codes for True ZK Rollups

Ali proposed two OP codes – „OP STARK verify“ and „OP SNARK verify“ – that he believes would enable true ZK rollups on the network. However, he doesn’t expect this change to happen until four or five years from now due to the slow pace at which changes are usually made on the network’s base layer.

Stacks‘ sBTC Protocol

In spite of this, Stacks has developed their own protocol called sBTC which bridges BTC from Layer 1 to Layer 2 chains in a more decentralized manner than other solutions. According to Ali, this is what is needed to kickstart DeFi on Bitcoin and make it programmable on Layer 2s.

Revival of Developer Culture

Ali also spoke about reviving the developer culture within the community in order for these changes and others like them to take place more quickly and effectively. He believes that by providing developers with tools they need in order to continue innovating on top of Bitcoin will be essential if it is going keep up with other blockchains out there today.


The unlocking of Bitcoin’s programming potential through two simple OP codes may be possible but not likely anytime soon due to its slow-moving nature when it comes to making changes at its base level; however companies like Stacks are doing their part by providing protocols such as sBTC that bridge BTC from one chain onto another while remaining more decentralized than other solutions. In addition, reviving developer culture within the community is essential if we want these changes implemented sooner rather than later so that Bitcoin can remain competitive in regards to other blockchains out there today