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The structure of the Tangle — Number of approvers

In this blog, we talk about the number of direct approvers a tip can receive. In the Tangle, each transaction approves exactly two tips. While this implies that the average number of direct approvers is equal to two, the actual number of approvers can vary significantly between transactions. This is shown in Fig. 1. Here we will look in particular at the probability distribution P(n) to have exactly n approvers. In other words, we are interested in the likely number of potential paths that a random walk will choose from a random transaction. This metric is not only interesting for investigating the structure of the Tangle, but it also allows us to make some probabilistic predictions. For example, recent research showed that the probability distribution P(n) can be employed to make predictions on whether certain parts of the parasite chain attack would be successful, hence providing us with insight under which conditions we should apply c...

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