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Why i’m bullish on Zilliqa (long read)

Edit: TL;DR added in the comments
 
Hey all, I've been researching coins since 2017 and have gone through 100s of them in the last 3 years. I got introduced to blockchain via Bitcoin of course, analyzed Ethereum thereafter and from that moment I have a keen interest in smart contact platforms. I’m passionate about Ethereum but I find Zilliqa to have a better risk-reward ratio. Especially because Zilliqa has found an elegant balance between being secure, decentralized and scalable in my opinion.
 
Below I post my analysis of why from all the coins I went through I’m most bullish on Zilliqa (yes I went through Tezos, EOS, NEO, VeChain, Harmony, Algorand, Cardano etc.). Note that this is not investment advice and although it's a thorough analysis there is obviously some bias involved. Looking forward to what you all think!
 
Fun fact: the name Zilliqa is a play on ‘silica’ silicon dioxide which means “Silicon for the high-throughput consensus computer.”
 
This post is divided into (i) Technology, (ii) Business & Partnerships, and (iii) Marketing & Community. I’ve tried to make the technology part readable for a broad audience. If you’ve ever tried understanding the inner workings of Bitcoin and Ethereum you should be able to grasp most parts. Otherwise, just skim through and once you are zoning out head to the next part.
 
Technology and some more:
 
Introduction
 
The technology is one of the main reasons why I’m so bullish on Zilliqa. First thing you see on their website is: “Zilliqa is a high-performance, high-security blockchain platform for enterprises and next-generation applications.” These are some bold statements.
 
Before we deep dive into the technology let’s take a step back in time first as they have quite the history. The initial research paper from which Zilliqa originated dates back to August 2016: Elastico: A Secure Sharding Protocol For Open Blockchains where Loi Luu (Kyber Network) is one of the co-authors. Other ideas that led to the development of what Zilliqa has become today are: Bitcoin-NG, collective signing CoSi, ByzCoin and Omniledger.
 
The technical white paper was made public in August 2017 and since then they have achieved everything stated in the white paper and also created their own open source intermediate level smart contract language called Scilla (functional programming language similar to OCaml) too.
 
Mainnet is live since the end of January 2019 with daily transaction rates growing continuously. About a week ago mainnet reached 5 million transactions, 500.000+ addresses in total along with 2400 nodes keeping the network decentralized and secure. Circulating supply is nearing 11 billion and currently only mining rewards are left. The maximum supply is 21 billion with annual inflation being 7.13% currently and will only decrease with time.
 
Zilliqa realized early on that the usage of public cryptocurrencies and smart contracts were increasing but decentralized, secure, and scalable alternatives were lacking in the crypto space. They proposed to apply sharding onto a public smart contract blockchain where the transaction rate increases almost linear with the increase in the amount of nodes. More nodes = higher transaction throughput and increased decentralization. Sharding comes in many forms and Zilliqa uses network-, transaction- and computational sharding. Network sharding opens up the possibility of using transaction- and computational sharding on top. Zilliqa does not use state sharding for now. We’ll come back to this later.
 
Before we continue dissecting how Zilliqa achieves such from a technological standpoint it’s good to keep in mind that a blockchain being decentralised and secure and scalable is still one of the main hurdles in allowing widespread usage of decentralised networks. In my opinion this needs to be solved first before blockchains can get to the point where they can create and add large scale value. So I invite you to read the next section to grasp the underlying fundamentals. Because after all these premises need to be true otherwise there isn’t a fundamental case to be bullish on Zilliqa, right?
 
Down the rabbit hole
 
How have they achieved this? Let’s define the basics first: key players on Zilliqa are the users and the miners. A user is anybody who uses the blockchain to transfer funds or run smart contracts. Miners are the (shard) nodes in the network who run the consensus protocol and get rewarded for their service in Zillings (ZIL). The mining network is divided into several smaller networks called shards, which is also referred to as ‘network sharding’. Miners subsequently are randomly assigned to a shard by another set of miners called DS (Directory Service) nodes. The regular shards process transactions and the outputs of these shards are eventually combined by the DS shard as they reach consensus on the final state. More on how these DS shards reach consensus (via pBFT) will be explained later on.
 
The Zilliqa network produces two types of blocks: DS blocks and Tx blocks. One DS Block consists of 100 Tx Blocks. And as previously mentioned there are two types of nodes concerned with reaching consensus: shard nodes and DS nodes. Becoming a shard node or DS node is being defined by the result of a PoW cycle (Ethash) at the beginning of the DS Block. All candidate mining nodes compete with each other and run the PoW (Proof-of-Work) cycle for 60 seconds and the submissions achieving the highest difficulty will be allowed on the network. And to put it in perspective: the average difficulty for one DS node is ~ 2 Th/s equaling 2.000.000 Mh/s or 55 thousand+ GeForce GTX 1070 / 8 GB GPUs at 35.4 Mh/s. Each DS Block 10 new DS nodes are allowed. And a shard node needs to provide around 8.53 GH/s currently (around 240 GTX 1070s). Dual mining ETH/ETC and ZIL is possible and can be done via mining software such as Phoenix and Claymore. There are pools and if you have large amounts of hashing power (Ethash) available you could mine solo.
 
The PoW cycle of 60 seconds is a peak performance and acts as an entry ticket to the network. The entry ticket is called a sybil resistance mechanism and makes it incredibly hard for adversaries to spawn lots of identities and manipulate the network with these identities. And after every 100 Tx Blocks which corresponds to roughly 1,5 hour this PoW process repeats. In between these 1,5 hour, no PoW needs to be done meaning Zilliqa’s energy consumption to keep the network secure is low. For more detailed information on how mining works click here.
Okay, hats off to you. You have made it this far. Before we go any deeper down the rabbit hole we first must understand why Zilliqa goes through all of the above technicalities and understand a bit more what a blockchain on a more fundamental level is. Because the core of Zilliqa’s consensus protocol relies on the usage of pBFT (practical Byzantine Fault Tolerance) we need to know more about state machines and their function. Navigate to Viewblock, a Zilliqa block explorer, and just come back to this article. We will use this site to navigate through a few concepts.
 
We have established that Zilliqa is a public and distributed blockchain. Meaning that everyone with an internet connection can send ZILs, trigger smart contracts, etc. and there is no central authority who fully controls the network. Zilliqa and other public and distributed blockchains (like Bitcoin and Ethereum) can also be defined as state machines.
 
Taking the liberty of paraphrasing examples and definitions given by Samuel Brooks’ medium article, he describes the definition of a blockchain (like Zilliqa) as: “A peer-to-peer, append-only datastore that uses consensus to synchronize cryptographically-secure data”.
 
Next, he states that: "blockchains are fundamentally systems for managing valid state transitions”. For some more context, I recommend reading the whole medium article to get a better grasp of the definitions and understanding of state machines. Nevertheless, let’s try to simplify and compile it into a single paragraph. Take traffic lights as an example: all its states (red, amber, and green) are predefined, all possible outcomes are known and it doesn’t matter if you encounter the traffic light today or tomorrow. It will still behave the same. Managing the states of a traffic light can be done by triggering a sensor on the road or pushing a button resulting in one traffic lights’ state going from green to red (via amber) and another light from red to green.
 
With public blockchains like Zilliqa, this isn’t so straightforward and simple. It started with block #1 almost 1,5 years ago and every 45 seconds or so a new block linked to the previous block is being added. Resulting in a chain of blocks with transactions in it that everyone can verify from block #1 to the current #647.000+ block. The state is ever changing and the states it can find itself in are infinite. And while the traffic light might work together in tandem with various other traffic lights, it’s rather insignificant comparing it to a public blockchain. Because Zilliqa consists of 2400 nodes who need to work together to achieve consensus on what the latest valid state is while some of these nodes may have latency or broadcast issues, drop offline or are deliberately trying to attack the network, etc.
 
Now go back to the Viewblock page take a look at the amount of transaction, addresses, block and DS height and then hit refresh. Obviously as expected you see new incremented values on one or all parameters. And how did the Zilliqa blockchain manage to transition from a previous valid state to the latest valid state? By using pBFT to reach consensus on the latest valid state.
 
After having obtained the entry ticket, miners execute pBFT to reach consensus on the ever-changing state of the blockchain. pBFT requires a series of network communication between nodes, and as such there is no GPU involved (but CPU). Resulting in the total energy consumed to keep the blockchain secure, decentralized and scalable being low.
 
pBFT stands for practical Byzantine Fault Tolerance and is an optimization on the Byzantine Fault Tolerant algorithm. To quote Blockonomi: “In the context of distributed systems, Byzantine Fault Tolerance is the ability of a distributed computer network to function as desired and correctly reach a sufficient consensus despite malicious components (nodes) of the system failing or propagating incorrect information to other peers.” Zilliqa is such a distributed computer network and depends on the honesty of the nodes (shard and DS) to reach consensus and to continuously update the state with the latest block. If pBFT is a new term for you I can highly recommend the Blockonomi article.
 
The idea of pBFT was introduced in 1999 - one of the authors even won a Turing award for it - and it is well researched and applied in various blockchains and distributed systems nowadays. If you want more advanced information than the Blockonomi link provides click here. And if you’re in between Blockonomi and the University of Singapore read the Zilliqa Design Story Part 2 dating from October 2017.
Quoting from the Zilliqa tech whitepaper: “pBFT relies upon a correct leader (which is randomly selected) to begin each phase and proceed when the sufficient majority exists. In case the leader is byzantine it can stall the entire consensus protocol. To address this challenge, pBFT offers a view change protocol to replace the byzantine leader with another one.”
 
pBFT can tolerate ⅓ of the nodes being dishonest (offline counts as Byzantine = dishonest) and the consensus protocol will function without stalling or hiccups. Once there are more than ⅓ of dishonest nodes but no more than ⅔ the network will be stalled and a view change will be triggered to elect a new DS leader. Only when more than ⅔ of the nodes are dishonest (66%) double-spend attacks become possible.
 
If the network stalls no transactions can be processed and one has to wait until a new honest leader has been elected. When the mainnet was just launched and in its early phases, view changes happened regularly. As of today the last stalling of the network - and view change being triggered - was at the end of October 2019.
 
Another benefit of using pBFT for consensus besides low energy is the immediate finality it provides. Once your transaction is included in a block and the block is added to the chain it’s done. Lastly, take a look at this article where three types of finality are being defined: probabilistic, absolute and economic finality. Zilliqa falls under the absolute finality (just like Tendermint for example). Although lengthy already we skipped through some of the inner workings from Zilliqa’s consensus: read the Zilliqa Design Story Part 3 and you will be close to having a complete picture on it. Enough about PoW, sybil resistance mechanism, pBFT, etc. Another thing we haven’t looked at yet is the amount of decentralization.
 
Decentralisation
 
Currently, there are four shards, each one of them consisting of 600 nodes. 1 shard with 600 so-called DS nodes (Directory Service - they need to achieve a higher difficulty than shard nodes) and 1800 shard nodes of which 250 are shard guards (centralized nodes controlled by the team). The amount of shard guards has been steadily declining from 1200 in January 2019 to 250 as of May 2020. On the Viewblock statistics, you can see that many of the nodes are being located in the US but those are only the (CPU parts of the) shard nodes who perform pBFT. There is no data from where the PoW sources are coming. And when the Zilliqa blockchain starts reaching its transaction capacity limit, a network upgrade needs to be executed to lift the current cap of maximum 2400 nodes to allow more nodes and formation of more shards which will allow to network to keep on scaling according to demand.
Besides shard nodes there are also seed nodes. The main role of seed nodes is to serve as direct access points (for end-users and clients) to the core Zilliqa network that validates transactions. Seed nodes consolidate transaction requests and forward these to the lookup nodes (another type of nodes) for distribution to the shards in the network. Seed nodes also maintain the entire transaction history and the global state of the blockchain which is needed to provide services such as block explorers. Seed nodes in the Zilliqa network are comparable to Infura on Ethereum.
 
The seed nodes were first only operated by Zilliqa themselves, exchanges and Viewblock. Operators of seed nodes like exchanges had no incentive to open them for the greater public. They were centralised at first. Decentralisation at the seed nodes level has been steadily rolled out since March 2020 ( Zilliqa Improvement Proposal 3 ). Currently the amount of seed nodes is being increased, they are public-facing and at the same time PoS is applied to incentivize seed node operators and make it possible for ZIL holders to stake and earn passive yields. Important distinction: seed nodes are not involved with consensus! That is still PoW as entry ticket and pBFT for the actual consensus.
 
5% of the block rewards are being assigned to seed nodes (from the beginning in 2019) and those are being used to pay out ZIL stakers. The 5% block rewards with an annual yield of 10.03% translate to roughly 610 MM ZILs in total that can be staked. Exchanges use the custodial variant of staking and wallets like Moonlet will use the non-custodial version (starting in Q3 2020). Staking is being done by sending ZILs to a smart contract created by Zilliqa and audited by Quantstamp.
 
With a high amount of DS; shard nodes and seed nodes becoming more decentralized too, Zilliqa qualifies for the label of decentralized in my opinion.
 
Smart contracts
 
Let me start by saying I’m not a developer and my programming skills are quite limited. So I‘m taking the ELI5 route (maybe 12) but if you are familiar with Javascript, Solidity or specifically OCaml please head straight to Scilla - read the docs to get a good initial grasp of how Zilliqa’s smart contract language Scilla works and if you ask yourself “why another programming language?” check this article. And if you want to play around with some sample contracts in an IDE click here. The faucet can be found here. And more information on architecture, dapp development and API can be found on the Developer Portal.
If you are more into listening and watching: check this recent webinar explaining Zilliqa and Scilla. Link is time-stamped so you’ll start right away with a platform introduction, roadmap 2020 and afterwards a proper Scilla introduction.
 
Generalized: programming languages can be divided into being ‘object-oriented’ or ‘functional’. Here is an ELI5 given by software development academy: * “all programs have two basic components, data – what the program knows – and behavior – what the program can do with that data. So object-oriented programming states that combining data and related behaviors in one place, is called “object”, which makes it easier to understand how a particular program works. On the other hand, functional programming argues that data and behavior are different things and should be separated to ensure their clarity.” *
 
Scilla is on the functional side and shares similarities with OCaml: OCaml is a general-purpose programming language with an emphasis on expressiveness and safety. It has an advanced type system that helps catch your mistakes without getting in your way. It's used in environments where a single mistake can cost millions and speed matters, is supported by an active community, and has a rich set of libraries and development tools. For all its power, OCaml is also pretty simple, which is one reason it's often used as a teaching language.
 
Scilla is blockchain agnostic, can be implemented onto other blockchains as well, is recognized by academics and won a so-called Distinguished Artifact Award award at the end of last year.
 
One of the reasons why the Zilliqa team decided to create their own programming language focused on preventing smart contract vulnerabilities is that adding logic on a blockchain, programming, means that you cannot afford to make mistakes. Otherwise, it could cost you. It’s all great and fun blockchains being immutable but updating your code because you found a bug isn’t the same as with a regular web application for example. And with smart contracts, it inherently involves cryptocurrencies in some form thus value.
 
Another difference with programming languages on a blockchain is gas. Every transaction you do on a smart contract platform like Zilliqa or Ethereum costs gas. With gas you basically pay for computational costs. Sending a ZIL from address A to address B costs 0.001 ZIL currently. Smart contracts are more complex, often involve various functions and require more gas (if gas is a new concept click here ).
 
So with Scilla, similar to Solidity, you need to make sure that “every function in your smart contract will run as expected without hitting gas limits. An improper resource analysis may lead to situations where funds may get stuck simply because a part of the smart contract code cannot be executed due to gas limits. Such constraints are not present in traditional software systems”. Scilla design story part 1
 
Some examples of smart contract issues you’d want to avoid are: leaking funds, ‘unexpected changes to critical state variables’ (example: someone other than you setting his or her address as the owner of the smart contract after creation) or simply killing a contract.
 
Scilla also allows for formal verification. Wikipedia to the rescue: In the context of hardware and software systems, formal verification is the act of proving or disproving the correctness of intended algorithms underlying a system with respect to a certain formal specification or property, using formal methods of mathematics.
 
Formal verification can be helpful in proving the correctness of systems such as: cryptographic protocols, combinational circuits, digital circuits with internal memory, and software expressed as source code.
 
Scilla is being developed hand-in-hand with formalization of its semantics and its embedding into the Coq proof assistant — a state-of-the art tool for mechanized proofs about properties of programs.”
 
Simply put, with Scilla and accompanying tooling developers can be mathematically sure and proof that the smart contract they’ve written does what he or she intends it to do.
 
Smart contract on a sharded environment and state sharding
 
There is one more topic I’d like to touch on: smart contract execution in a sharded environment (and what is the effect of state sharding). This is a complex topic. I’m not able to explain it any easier than what is posted here. But I will try to compress the post into something easy to digest.
 
Earlier on we have established that Zilliqa can process transactions in parallel due to network sharding. This is where the linear scalability comes from. We can define simple transactions: a transaction from address A to B (Category 1), a transaction where a user interacts with one smart contract (Category 2) and the most complex ones where triggering a transaction results in multiple smart contracts being involved (Category 3). The shards are able to process transactions on their own without interference of the other shards. With Category 1 transactions that is doable, with Category 2 transactions sometimes if that address is in the same shard as the smart contract but with Category 3 you definitely need communication between the shards. Solving that requires to make a set of communication rules the protocol needs to follow in order to process all transactions in a generalised fashion.
 
And this is where the downsides of state sharding comes in currently. All shards in Zilliqa have access to the complete state. Yes the state size (0.1 GB at the moment) grows and all of the nodes need to store it but it also means that they don’t need to shop around for information available on other shards. Requiring more communication and adding more complexity. Computer science knowledge and/or developer knowledge required links if you want to dig further: Scilla - language grammar Scilla - Foundations for Verifiable Decentralised Computations on a Blockchain Gas Accounting NUS x Zilliqa: Smart contract language workshop
 
Easier to follow links on programming Scilla https://learnscilla.com/home Ivan on Tech
 
Roadmap / Zilliqa 2.0
 
There is no strict defined roadmap but here are topics being worked on. And via the Zilliqa website there is also more information on the projects they are working on.
 
Business & Partnerships
 
It’s not only technology in which Zilliqa seems to be excelling as their ecosystem has been expanding and starting to grow rapidly. The project is on a mission to provide OpenFinance (OpFi) to the world and Singapore is the right place to be due to its progressive regulations and futuristic thinking. Singapore has taken a proactive approach towards cryptocurrencies by introducing the Payment Services Act 2019 (PS Act). Among other things, the PS Act will regulate intermediaries dealing with certain cryptocurrencies, with a particular focus on consumer protection and anti-money laundering. It will also provide a stable regulatory licensing and operating framework for cryptocurrency entities, effectively covering all crypto businesses and exchanges based in Singapore. According to PWC 82% of the surveyed executives in Singapore reported blockchain initiatives underway and 13% of them have already brought the initiatives live to the market. There is also an increasing list of organizations that are starting to provide digital payment services. Moreover, Singaporean blockchain developers Building Cities Beyond has recently created an innovation $15 million grant to encourage development on its ecosystem. This all suggests that Singapore tries to position itself as (one of) the leading blockchain hubs in the world.
 
Zilliqa seems to already take advantage of this and recently helped launch Hg Exchange on their platform, together with financial institutions PhillipCapital, PrimePartners and Fundnel. Hg Exchange, which is now approved by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), uses smart contracts to represent digital assets. Through Hg Exchange financial institutions worldwide can use Zilliqa's safe-by-design smart contracts to enable the trading of private equities. For example, think of companies such as Grab, Airbnb, SpaceX that are not available for public trading right now. Hg Exchange will allow investors to buy shares of private companies & unicorns and capture their value before an IPO. Anquan, the main company behind Zilliqa, has also recently announced that they became a partner and shareholder in TEN31 Bank, which is a fully regulated bank allowing for tokenization of assets and is aiming to bridge the gap between conventional banking and the blockchain world. If STOs, the tokenization of assets, and equity trading will continue to increase, then Zilliqa’s public blockchain would be the ideal candidate due to its strategic positioning, partnerships, regulatory compliance and the technology that is being built on top of it.
 
What is also very encouraging is their focus on banking the un(der)banked. They are launching a stablecoin basket starting with XSGD. As many of you know, stablecoins are currently mostly used for trading. However, Zilliqa is actively trying to broaden the use case of stablecoins. I recommend everybody to read this text that Amrit Kumar wrote (one of the co-founders). These stablecoins will be integrated in the traditional markets and bridge the gap between the crypto world and the traditional world. This could potentially revolutionize and legitimise the crypto space if retailers and companies will for example start to use stablecoins for payments or remittances, instead of it solely being used for trading.
 
Zilliqa also released their DeFi strategic roadmap (dating November 2019) which seems to be aligning well with their OpFi strategy. A non-custodial DEX is coming to Zilliqa made by Switcheo which allows cross-chain trading (atomic swaps) between ETH, EOS and ZIL based tokens. They also signed a Memorandum of Understanding for a (soon to be announced) USD stablecoin. And as Zilliqa is all about regulations and being compliant, I’m speculating on it to be a regulated USD stablecoin. Furthermore, XSGD is already created and visible on block explorer and XIDR (Indonesian Stablecoin) is also coming soon via StraitsX. Here also an overview of the Tech Stack for Financial Applications from September 2019. Further quoting Amrit Kumar on this:
 
There are two basic building blocks in DeFi/OpFi though: 1) stablecoins as you need a non-volatile currency to get access to this market and 2) a dex to be able to trade all these financial assets. The rest are built on top of these blocks.
 
So far, together with our partners and community, we have worked on developing these building blocks with XSGD as a stablecoin. We are working on bringing a USD-backed stablecoin as well. We will soon have a decentralised exchange developed by Switcheo. And with HGX going live, we are also venturing into the tokenization space. More to come in the future.”
 
Additionally, they also have this ZILHive initiative that injects capital into projects. There have been already 6 waves of various teams working on infrastructure, innovation and research, and they are not from ASEAN or Singapore only but global: see Grantees breakdown by country. Over 60 project teams from over 20 countries have contributed to Zilliqa's ecosystem. This includes individuals and teams developing wallets, explorers, developer toolkits, smart contract testing frameworks, dapps, etc. As some of you may know, Unstoppable Domains (UD) blew up when they launched on Zilliqa. UD aims to replace cryptocurrency addresses with a human-readable name and allows for uncensorable websites. Zilliqa will probably be the only one able to handle all these transactions onchain due to ability to scale and its resulting low fees which is why the UD team launched this on Zilliqa in the first place. Furthermore, Zilliqa also has a strong emphasis on security, compliance, and privacy, which is why they partnered with companies like Elliptic, ChainSecurity (part of PwC Switzerland), and Incognito. Their sister company Aqilliz (Zilliqa spelled backwards) focuses on revolutionizing the digital advertising space and is doing interesting things like using Zilliqa to track outdoor digital ads with companies like Foodpanda.
 
Zilliqa is listed on nearly all major exchanges, having several different fiat-gateways and recently have been added to Binance’s margin trading and futures trading with really good volume. They also have a very impressive team with good credentials and experience. They don't just have “tech people”. They have a mix of tech people, business people, marketeers, scientists, and more. Naturally, it's good to have a mix of people with different skill sets if you work in the crypto space.
 
Marketing & Community
 
Zilliqa has a very strong community. If you just follow their Twitter their engagement is much higher for a coin that has approximately 80k followers. They also have been ‘coin of the day’ by LunarCrush many times. LunarCrush tracks real-time cryptocurrency value and social data. According to their data, it seems Zilliqa has a more fundamental and deeper understanding of marketing and community engagement than almost all other coins. While almost all coins have been a bit frozen in the last months, Zilliqa seems to be on its own bull run. It was somewhere in the 100s a few months ago and is currently ranked #46 on CoinGecko. Their official Telegram also has over 20k people and is very active, and their community channel which is over 7k now is more active and larger than many other official channels. Their local communities also seem to be growing.
 
Moreover, their community started ‘Zillacracy’ together with the Zilliqa core team ( see www.zillacracy.com ). It’s a community-run initiative where people from all over the world are now helping with marketing and development on Zilliqa. Since its launch in February 2020 they have been doing a lot and will also run their own non-custodial seed node for staking. This seed node will also allow them to start generating revenue for them to become a self sustaining entity that could potentially scale up to become a decentralized company working in parallel with the Zilliqa core team. Comparing it to all the other smart contract platforms (e.g. Cardano, EOS, Tezos etc.) they don't seem to have started a similar initiative (correct me if I’m wrong though). This suggests in my opinion that these other smart contract platforms do not fully understand how to utilize the ‘power of the community’. This is something you cannot ‘buy with money’ and gives many projects in the space a disadvantage.
 
Zilliqa also released two social products called SocialPay and Zeeves. SocialPay allows users to earn ZILs while tweeting with a specific hashtag. They have recently used it in partnership with the Singapore Red Cross for a marketing campaign after their initial pilot program. It seems like a very valuable social product with a good use case. I can see a lot of traditional companies entering the space through this product, which they seem to suggest will happen. Tokenizing hashtags with smart contracts to get network effect is a very smart and innovative idea.
 
Regarding Zeeves, this is a tipping bot for Telegram. They already have 1000s of signups and they plan to keep upgrading it for more and more people to use it (e.g. they recently have added a quiz features). They also use it during AMAs to reward people in real-time. It’s a very smart approach to grow their communities and get familiar with ZIL. I can see this becoming very big on Telegram. This tool suggests, again, that the Zilliqa team has a deeper understanding of what the crypto space and community needs and is good at finding the right innovative tools to grow and scale.
 
To be honest, I haven’t covered everything (i’m also reaching the character limited haha). So many updates happening lately that it's hard to keep up, such as the International Monetary Fund mentioning Zilliqa in their report, custodial and non-custodial Staking, Binance Margin, Futures, Widget, entering the Indian market, and more. The Head of Marketing Colin Miles has also released this as an overview of what is coming next. And last but not least, Vitalik Buterin has been mentioning Zilliqa lately acknowledging Zilliqa and mentioning that both projects have a lot of room to grow. There is much more info of course and a good part of it has been served to you on a silver platter. I invite you to continue researching by yourself :-) And if you have any comments or questions please post here!
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The Unofficial Cardano FAQ - V3

(if you would like to add information or see mistakes, just comment below and I will credit you)
What is Cardano? Cardano is an open source and permissionless "Third Generation" blockchain project being developed by IOHK. Development and research started in 2015, with the 1.0 mainnet launching in 2017. Cardano blockchain is currently being developed into two layers. The first one is the ledger of account values, and the second one is the reason why values are transferred from one account to the other.
  1. Cardano Settlement Layer (CSL) - The CSL acts as the ledger of account or balance ledger. This is an idea created as an improvement of bitcoin blockchain. It uses a proof-of-stake consensus algorithm known as Ouroboros to generate new blocks and confirm transactions.
  2. Cardano Computation Layer (CCL) - The CCL contains the data how values are transferred. Since the computation layer is not connected to balance ledger, users of the CCL can create customized rules (smart contracts) when evaluating transactions. (https://support.bitkub.com/hc/en-us/articles/360006678892-What-are-the-two-layers-of-Cardano-)
IOHK has the contract with an undisclosed party to develop the project until the end of 2020, at which point the community may elect another development team - on the assumption that the voting infrastructure has been completed. However CEO Charles Hoskinson has stated that they will develop the project until it is completed, and they are simply financed until the end of 2020.
Cardano was the first project built on a peer-reviewed scientific development method, resulting in dozens of research papers produced by IOHK. Among these papers is Ouroboros Genesis, proving that a Proof of Stake protocol can be just as secure as Proof of Work - which was originally developed for Bitcoin, and refined for Ethereum. This PoS protocol considerably lowers the resources cost to maintain network while still maintaining security and network speed.
Cardano as a financial infrastructure is not yet completed, With significant development to be rolled out.
What were the other two generations of blockchain? Gen 1 was Bitcoin. It exists by itself and talks to nobody but Bitcoin. It is capable of peer to peer transactions without a third party in such a way that you cannot cheat the system. This was a major step forward for the E-cash concept that people have been working on for the 20 years prior.
Gen 2 was Ethereum and other smart-contract platforms that allow other coins and platforms to be built on top of their infrastructure. These coins can interact with others on the platform, but cannot interact with other platforms. Meaning it is still not truly interoperable. Most Gen 2 blockchains are also using Proof of Work likes Bitcoin, which effects scaling. Also missing is a built-in method to pay for upgrades and voting mechanics for decision making.
Gen 3 blockchains are a complete package designed to replace the current financial infrastructure of the world. Cardano is using Proof of Stake to ensure security and decentralisation(Shelley). Scaling through parallel computation (Hydra in Basho), Sidechains to allow the platform to interact with other platforms (Basho), and also include mechanisms for voting for project funding, changes to the protocol and improvement proposals (Voltaire). Finally smart contracts platform for new and established projects that are developer friendly (Goguen).
Who is the team behind Cardano? There are three organisations that are contributing to the development of Cardano. The first is the Cardano Foundation, an objective, non-profit organisation based in Switzerland. Its core responsibilities are to nurture, grow and educate Cardano users and commercial communities, to engage with authorities on regulatory and commercial matters and to act as a blockchain and cryptocurrency standards body. The second entity is IOHK, a leading cryptocurrency research and development company, which holds the contract to develop the platform until 2020. The final business partner is Emurgo, which invests in start-ups and assists commercial ventures to build on the Cardano blockchain.
www.Cardano.org www.emurgo.io https://cardanofoundation.org/en/
What is the difference between Proof of Work and Proof of stake? Both these protocols are known as “consensus protocols” that confirm whether a transaction is valid or invalid without a middleman like Visa or your bank. Every node (active and updated copy of the blockchain) can agree that the transaction did take place legitimately. If more than half validators agree, then the ledger is updated and the transaction is now secured. Proof-of-Work (PoW) happens when a miner is elected to solve an exceptionally difficult math problem and gets credit for adding a verified block to the blockchain. Finding a solution is an arduous guessing game that takes a considerable amount of computing power to compete for the correct answer. It is like “pick a number between 1 and one trillion” and when you get it right, you get $30,000 in Bitcoin, so the more computers you have working on it, the faster you can solve it. Also the more people who are trying to solve the same block, the harder the algorithm, so it may become 1 in 20 trillion. The downside is the massive amounts of power required to run the computers that run the network, and the slow pace that blocks are solved. To “Hack” a PoW system, you need 51% of the computing power, which would allow you to deny transactions, or spend the same coin twice. At the moment there are 8 main mining operations for bitcoin, and 4 of them make up more that 51% of the mining power.
PoS instead selects a coin at random that already exists, and the person who owns that coin is elected to put the work in to validate the block. This means there is no contest and no guessing game. Some computer power is required, but only a fraction of a PoW system. The complex nature of selecting a coin that exists on the correct and longest chain and is owned by someone who can complete the block, AND in such a way that it is secure AND that computer currently running AND that person also having an incentive to complete the work, has made the development of PoS very slow. However only a few years ago it wasn’t even possible. In this method, the more of the coin (ADA) you stake, the more likely you are to be selected to close a block. Cardano also allows you to delegate your stake to someone else to validate the block so they do the work, and you share in the reward for doing so.
To “hack” a PoS blockchain you need to own 51% of the tokens, which is significantly harder than owning 51% of the computing power.
What is ADA and how is it different to Cardano? Cardano is the name of the network infrastructure, and can be thought of like a rail network. ADA is the native token that has been developed alongside Cardano to facilitate the network operation. This helps confusion and maintains distinction, compared to Ethereum being the native token of Ethereum. Similar to bitcoin or any other token, ADA can be sent peer to peer as payment, but is also the reward for running the network, and what is taken as transaction fees.
In this metaphor “Cardano” is the train tracks, that everything runs on. A stake pool would be the locomotive, facilitating transactions on the network while ADA is the coal that powers the locomotive. The train carriages are Decentralised applications (Dapps) that are also running on cardano tracks, but are not actively powering the network.
What is staking Cardano is a Proof of Stake protocol, and uses already existing coins like a marker to ensure security. The protocol chooses a coin at random and the owner of that coin is elected to validate a block of transactions. Staking is the process of adding your ADA coins to a Pool that has the resources to run the network. If the pool you have chosen to "delegate" your stake to is chosen to close/validate a block, then you get a portion of the rewards. The ADA never leaves your wallet, and you can "undelegate" whenever you like. this increases stability of the network and also gives an incentive to pool operators to invest the time and hardware required to run a pool.
What is a stake-pool and how does it work? Cardano.org FAQ on the issue goes into much more detail
A stake pool is where the computing power of the network takes place. During ITN there was 1200 registered stake pools while 300 were creating blocks. You can manage your own stake-pool or delegate your ADA to an already registered pool. Rewards are determined by the protocol, however the pool may elect to charge fee Percentages, or flat rate fee to upkeep their pool.
Can I Stake my ADA right now? The staking testnet has closed, If you participated in the Incentivised Test Net and earned rewards, instructions to check the balance are here.
However if you have just purchased some or it was held on an exchange, then you will need to wait until the Shelley mainnet launch happening at the end of July 2020.
Where do I stake my ADA? Daedalus Flight wallet, and Yoroi Wallet (as a chrome extension) are the current best options. Adalite and several other third-party wallets also exist. Coinbase will also allow staking as a custodial service, and many exchanges may offer “staking as a service” so you can leave your coins on the exchange and still earn rewards if you enjoy trading. I do not recommend leaving coins on an exchange unless you are actively trading.
What are the staking rewards now and what can I expect on a return in the future? The Incentivised Test Net (ITN) Delivered 10%-15%pa returns on average. The future of staking will most likely be lower, but will depend on the amount of ADA staked across the network and the amount of network traffic.
Check https://staking.cardano.org/en/calculato for a clearer picture.
what is a Pledge? To stop one person operating many pools, the rewards that a pool earns will vary depending on the amount of personal ADA they “pledge” to open the pool. This means that 50 pools with a 1,00ADA pledge each will be overall less profitable than 1-2 pool with the max ADA pledge (unknown but likely around 300k). Even if the 50 pools have the same over stake delegated by other users and have a better chance of being selected to close a block, the 50 pools may receive lower rewards.. (at least that is the theory)
Who is IOHK? IOHK is a for-profit software engineering company founded by CEO Charles Hoskinson and Jeremy Wood in 2015 that has taken a scientific approach to the development of blockchain. IOHK started with “first principles” and looked at questions like “what is a blockchain” and “what should a blockchain be able to do” rather than accepting the established paradigm of Bitcoin and Ethereum. IOHK was originally Input Output Hong Kong, but is now Input Output Global and is based in Wyoming USA employing over 230 staff. IOHK has established research labs in several universities in order to complete the Cardano project, and is also developing Ethereum Classic, Atala, Mantis and possibly other Blockchain related programs and infrastructure.
Who is Charles? Charles Hoskinson is an early adopter of cryptocurrencies, American entrepreneur and cryptocurrency specialist. Charles Co-founded Ethereum with Vitalik Buterin and 5-8 others, However he only worked on that project for approximately six-months. Charles is now the CEO of IOHK and the director of The Bitcoin Education Project.
Why isn’t ADA on coinbase? Cardano and coinbase have recently connected in a big way. With IOHK turning over all their ADA to the custodial services of Coinbase. This means that Cardano and Coinbase have been working together for some time and there is a strong partnership forming. Staking and cold storage will be available and trading on Coinbase will most likely become available after the release of Shelley (although no official word yet)
Why Doesn’t Cardano have a Wikipedia Page? Wikipedia has strict guidelines on what can be turned into an article. As there has been no coverage of Cardano from mainstream media or “noteworthy” sources, there is no article yet. Wikipedia will also not accept sources from IOHK as they are not considered “reliable” and must come from a third party. This will most likely change soon.
Cardano does have a dedicated community driven wiki
https://cardanowiki.info/wiki/Home
What is Atala and why do I care?*
Atala is a suite of services being developed on top of the cardano blockchain by IOHK that focusses on credential certification, for things like education, work history and degrees (Atala Prism). Product counterfeiting protection through registering products on a blockchain and create taper-proof provenance. This does not only apply to Gucci handbags, but also medication, art, and anything that can be counterfeited (Atala Scan). As well as supply chain tracking to see issues and inefficiencies with greater transparency(Atala Trace).
Im new, how much is a good investment?
Cardano is still a speculative market and although there is amazing potential here, it is still only potential. When investing in any High risk market like Crypto, only every invest what you are willing to lose. Cardano may be testing the 10c barrier now. But in March it dumped to 1.7c. And if you suddenly need your money back during the dump then you are out of luck. Do your research before you FOMO in. Start with a small amount and send it between wallets and exchanges to understand how the system works. Store your private keys offline (or online cloud service but encrypted) with a method that is unlikely to be damaged AND have multiple copies. So in the case of a house fire or a blow to the head, or the cloud service being shutdown/destroyed, you do not lose your money.
Timelines
https://roadmap.cardano.org/en/
Shelley Decentralisation rollout and news
Goguen smart contract rollout
Voltaire Voting mechanics – no official roll out timeline (though promised for 2020)
Basho scaling and sidechains – no official roll out time line (most likely 2021)
submitted by YourBestMateRobbo to cardano [link] [comments]

EOS is highly undervalued because there was so much FUD

Because so much FUD has been produced in the last year (including by coindesk), the price of EOS has dropped quite a bit against other coins like Ethereum. But the technology, the developers and the community are still growing in secret. The community is just waiting for the big breakthrough to come.
Very good Collection against EOS FUD: eosbasecamp . com
A lot of people are saying the network is congested, but it is working as designed. You can rent EOS on REX very cheap. Much cheaper than ETH gas fees. Or you just use a wallet like anchor from Greymass and you can continue with free transactions (as designed the big players offers free transactions for their users).
BP's were never and are not a chinese cartel. There are a lot of big players competing against each other. The government is improving with token holders and big proxies starting to set criterias for the Block Producers. In fact the block producers developed a Framework for exchanges, so the users can vote if they have their token on a exchange: medium . com/@generEOS/open-source-exchange-voting-portal-ede575090ee3
BlockProducers have a contract to perform. If one miss too much blocks, he can get temporarily removed from 15 out of 21 BP's. BP's and block one working together to improve the IT infrastructure for EOS regularly. Just check the huge improvement in the last 6 month with the EOS benchmark: alohaeos . com/tools/benchmarks#networkId=1&timeframeId=12
Block one is continuously developing EOSIO Software. With EOS 2.0 the network is able to process around 10'000 tx/s (Proved on the testnet). EOS 3.0 is in development.
With eosio.evm (Ethereum virtual machine) there is now a possibility for Ethereum developers to take advantage of the speed from EOS.
BOSIBC just created interblockchain communications between the EOSIO chains. Dan is working on IBC as well with 4 chains (private EOSIO chains interacting with the EOS mainchain).
With Voice coming out this summer, there will come out as well a KYC method/solution with face ID without the need for government documents.
There are several promising products who start the DeFi development on EOS. Interview with Yves La Rose June 2020: esatoshi . club/satoshi-club-x-eos-ama-recap-from-june-8
And with the DAPP Network you can do unlimited scaling with childchains and sharding (Yes this îs already a working product!), develop/connect with any or multiple blockchains, universal account - one user account for all blockchains you want to use, maximal affordable decentralized storage, decentralized and trustless oracle similar to chainlink, but without needing a separate blockchain and with never seen low latency, easily create scheduled tasks and timers, boundless computational power, Easily implement randomness without resorting to vulnerable, complex, or expensive methods… As a developer with DAPP Network you can do whatever you want and whatever you need and connect anything with everything.
There was just so much FUD about EOS and everybody fell for it! I think that whoever started the EOS FUD is just scared like shit, that EOS actually delivers what they promised! Everybody who is a little bit smart understand the potential from EOSIO and DAPP Network. EOS is now there, where Ethereum will be in 5 years.
And no, there are not only Gambling Dapps on EOS:
everypedia . org: everyone’s decentralized encyclopedia
peos . one: private & untraceable transactions on EOS (Monero tech combined with the speed from EOS)
eosdt . com: over-collateralized stable coin (like MAKER)
vigor . ai: world's first multi-collateral insured token protocol available everywhere
chintai . io: issuance and management and secondary trading of tokenized securities
eosoptions . com: low latency on-chain options platform
prediqt.everipedia . org: prediction market protocol and #DeFi platform
acueos . io: decentralized moneymarket protocol for lenders and borrowers
pizza . live: PIZZA-USDE generate USDE stablecoin, decentralized financial ecosystem
liquidapps . io and dappsolutions . app: DAPP Network with LiquidOracles, LiquidChain (childchains and sharding), LiquidX (Connect any blockchain), vRam, vCPU, universalAccounts, LiquidScheduler, LiquidRandomness
newdex . io: the world's leading decentralized exchange
eosfinex . com: A high-performance exchange built on EOSIO
dexeos . io: EOS-based Decentralized Exchange
ive . one: global investment & issuing platform for digital assets
dgoods . org: A digital, distributed, open standard for virtual items on blockchain
sense . chat: Messenger built to communicate, organize, and reward your communities and friends
wordproof . io: wordpress plugin to protect website content
joinseeds . com: ecosystem to empower humanity and heal our planet
emanate . live: instantly rewards artists and music lovers for their creative expression
travala . com/payment/eosio-eos: Book Hotels and Accommodations, Worldwide
marketcap . one: EOS Pricefeeds
gallery . pixeos. art: International Marketplace for Collecting Art
prospectors . io: exciting strategy game on EOS and WAX (IBC connected) gives players endless opportunities to earn crypto
darkcountry . io: NFT Card Game with export functions to all possible blockchains
turncoatgalaxies . com: Turncoat Galaxies Strategy game
blankos . com: Huuuge Mythical NFT Game
voice . com: freedom of Speech. where truth has a voice
effect . ai: earn with the perfect combination of human and machine
Piña: eoslongisland . com/pina : is a restaurant review, rate reward app
Lifebank: youtube . com/watch?v=tgbZWs5vE5s : blood donation app
Fabblink: youtube . com/watch?v=AynFqe7GBAw : enable transparent, secure and reliable distributed automated manufacturing
Qure: devpost . com/software/qure-d3ihje : economic virtual meetup community
Kyros: youtube . com/watch?v=TwVbfJNvvGA : certificates Hub
transledger . io: Move Bitcoin, Litecoin or Bitcoincash to faster networks (EOS)
For sure I forgot some and a lot more will follow for sure...

vc . eos . io: PartneInvestments and Grants Overview from EOS VC and partners Galaxy Digital, EOS Global, SVK Crypto and FinLab
And EOS VC Grants Program continues investing in projects (today 34 companies) who use EOSIO software which will all benefit EOS in some ways: eos . io/news/blockone-announces-eos-vc-grants-recipients
and other investments to grow the EOSIO ecosystem: Gapless receives 5.5 million euros after support from the FinLab EOS VC Fund and Porsche AG, Expects 100,000 Listed Vehicles by EOY: chainbulletin . com/car-app-gapless-holds-successful-funding-round-expects-100000-listed-vehicles-by-eoy/
Major U.S. accounting firm Grant Thornton has announced a new platform for its clients to handle their intercompany transactions using the EOSIO blockchain. By doing this, they capture a small slice of an area worth $40 trillion annually: cointelegraph . com/news/grant-thornton-moves-intercompany-transactions-to-eosio
sparrowexchange . com Singapure based options trading platform. Stefan Schuetze, Managing Director of FinLab EOS VC Fund, said, "We are excited to invest in Sparrow, which is developing the next generation of financial products by leveraging EOSIO for their on-chain settlement layer." prnewswire . co.uk/news-releases/sparrow-raises-usd-3-5-mil-in-series-a-funding-874437988.html
submitted by CryptoDae to eos [link] [comments]

COSS DEX listing Enjin Coin ENJ


https://preview.redd.it/9xi7xl8guzb51.png?width=2000&format=png&auto=webp&s=93dadd21548940a8f792136b292c4f3af7ef8d44
Hello, everyone.
We are expanding our list of supported assets on COSS DEX by adding support for Enjin Coin ENJ.
ENJ is now available on the ENJ_USDT pair on https://dex.coss.io/trade/ENJ_USDT.

Enjin

Enjin offers an ecosystem of integrated products that make it easy for everyone to develop, trade, monetise, and market with blockchain.
Since its founding in 2009, Enjin has been deeply involved with the gaming industry. The same year, the company launched a gaming community platform called the Enjin Network and has grown it to more than 20 million users over the course of a decade.
In 2017 following a successful ICO that raised $18.9 million, Enjin established itself as a leading blockchain ecosystem developer, building a suite of user-first blockchain products that enable anyone to easily manage, explore, distribute, and integrate blockchain assets.
Built on top of a robust on-chain infrastructure and comprised of the Enjin Platform, Marketplace, Wallet, Beam, and other tools and services, the Enjin ecosystem enables game industry businesses to increase revenue, gain a competitive edge, and innovate in previously impossible ways.
Forged in gaming, Enjin’s tools and services can also be used by companies of all sizes and industries seeking to create blockchain products or utilise tokenised digital assets as part of their acquisition, retention, engagement, and monetisation strategies.
The Enjin ecosystem is fuelled by Enjin Coin (ENJ), an Ethereum-based cryptocurrency used to directly back the value of Enjin-powered blockchain assets.

COSS DEX

COSS DEX is a spot trading platform which provides cross-chain trading, deep liquidity, fast trade execution and settlement, and enables trading for its own COS token. 50% of trading fees generated on the COSS DEX is shared with COS token holders as part of their Fee Split Allocation (FSA) entitlement.
The platform is not limited to ERC20 tokens such as wrapped-BTC as with most commonly known DEXes — users are now able to trade BTC (core), LTC, BCH, XRP, and more right from their COSS DEX wallet.
COSS DEX operates on the ByteTrade blockchain and has a high speed matching engine supported by the protocol. The “Match-Chain” built on the ByteTrade layer-2 scaling structure provides stable and high- speed order matching services. This is different from any decentralised exchange you have heard of. Users enjoy an on-chain trading experiences as fast as 1 second, which is both fast and secure.

COSS DEX offers:

We are making every effort to bring only the best digital assets to our users and expand our partnerships.
COSS Team
Official Announcement: medium.com/coss-official/coss-dex-listing-enjin-coin-enj-fae6267674b1
submitted by satyarthm to CossIO [link] [comments]

How are FPGAs used in trading?

A field-programmable gate array (FPGA) is a chip that can be programmed to suit whatever purpose you want, as often as you want it and wherever you need it. FPGAs provide multiple advantages, including low latency, high throughput and energy efficiency.
To fully understand what FPGAs offer, imagine a performance spectrum. At one end, you have the central processing unit (CPU), which offers a generic set of instructions that can be combined to carry out an array of different tasks. This makes a CPU extremely flexible, and its behaviour can be defined through software. However, CPUs are also slow because they have to select from the available generic instructions to complete each task. In a sense, they’re a “jack of all trades, but a master of none”.
At the other end of the spectrum sit application-specific integrated circuits (ASICs). These are potentially much faster because they have been built with a single task in mind, making them a “master of one trade”. This is the kind of chip people use to mine bitcoin, for example. The downside of ASICs is that they can’t be changed, and they cost time and money to develop. FPGAs offer a perfect middle ground: they can be significantly faster than a CPU and are more flexible than ASICs.
FPGAs contain thousands, sometimes even millions, of so-called core logic blocks (CLBs). These blocks can be configured and combined to process any task that can be solved by a CPU. Compared with a CPU, FPGAs aren’t burdened by surplus hardware that would otherwise slow you down. They can therefore be used to carry out specific tasks quickly and effectively, and can even process several tasks simultaneously. These characteristics make them popular across a wide range of sectors, from aerospace to medical engineering and security systems, and of course finance.
How are FPGAs used in the financial services sector?
Speed and versatility are particularly important when buying or selling stocks and other securities. In the era of electronic trading, decisions are made in the blink of an eye. As prices change and orders come and go, companies are fed new information from exchanges and other sources via high-speed networks. This information arrives at high speeds, with time measured in nanoseconds. The sheer volume and speed of data demands a high bandwidth to process it all. Specialized trading algorithms make use of the new information in order to make trades. FPGAs provide the perfect platform to develop these applications, as they allow you to bypass non-essential software as well as generic-purpose hardware.
How do market makers use FPGAs to provide liquidity?
As a market maker, IMC provides liquidity to buyers and sellers of financial instruments. This requires us to price every instrument we trade and to react to the market accordingly. Valuation is a view on what the price of an asset should be, which is handled by our traders and our automated pricing algorithms. When a counterpart wants to buy or sell an asset on a trading venue, our role is to always be there and offer, or bid, a fair price for the asset. FPGAs enable us to perform this key function in the most efficient way possible.
At IMC, we keep a close eye on emerging technologies that can potentially improve our business. We began working with FPGAs more than a decade ago and are constantly exploring ways to develop this evolving technology. We work in a competitive industry, so our engineers have to be on their toes to make sure we’re continuously improving.
What does an FPGA engineer do?
Being an FPGA engineer is all about learning and identifying new solutions to challenges as they arise. A software developer can write code in a software language and know within seconds whether it works, and so deploy it quickly. However, the code will have to go through several abstraction layers and generic hardware components. Although you can deploy the code quickly, you do not get the fastest possible outcome.
As an FPGA engineer, it may take two to three hours of compilation time before you know whether your adjustment will result in the outcome you want. However, you can increase performance at the cost of more engineering time. The day-to-day challenge you face is how to make the process as efficient as possible with the given trade-offs while pushing the boundaries of the FPGA technology.
Skills needed to be an FPGA engineer
Things change extremely rapidly in the trading world, and agility is the name of the game. Unsurprisingly, FPGA engineers tend to enjoy a challenge. To work as an FGPA engineer at a company like IMC, you have to be a great problem-solver, a quick learner and highly adaptable.
What makes IMC a great fit for an FPGA engineer?
IMC offers a great team dynamic. We are a smaller company than many larger technology or finance houses, and we operate very much like a family unit. This means that, as a graduate engineer, you’ll never be far from the action, and you’ll be able to make an impact from day one.
Another key difference is that you’ll get to see the final outcome of your work. If you come up with an idea, we’ll give you the chance to make it work. If it does, you’ll see the results put into practice in a matter of days, which is always a great feeling. If it doesn’t, you’ll get to find out why – so there’s an opportunity to learn and improve for next time.
Ultimately, working at IMC is about having skin in the game. You’ll be entrusted with making your own decisions. And you’ll be working side by side with super smart people who are open-minded and always interested in hearing your ideas. Market making is a technology-dependent process, and we’re all in this together.
Think you have what it takes to make a difference at a technology graduate at IMC? Check out our graduate opportunities page.
submitted by IMC_Trading to u/IMC_Trading [link] [comments]

COSS DEX listing Enjin Coin ENJ

COSS DEX listing Enjin Coin ENJ

https://dex.coss.io/trade/ENJ_USDT
Hello, everyone.
We are expanding our list of supported assets on COSS DEX by adding support for Enjin Coin ENJ.
ENJ is now available on the ENJ_USDT pair on https://dex.coss.io/trade/ENJ_USDT.

Enjin

Enjin offers an ecosystem of integrated products that make it easy for everyone to develop, trade, monetise, and market with blockchain.
Since its founding in 2009, Enjin has been deeply involved with the gaming industry. The same year, the company launched a gaming community platform called the Enjin Network and has grown it to more than 20 million users over the course of a decade.
In 2017 following a successful ICO that raised $18.9 million, Enjin established itself as a leading blockchain ecosystem developer, building a suite of user-first blockchain products that enable anyone to easily manage, explore, distribute, and integrate blockchain assets.
Built on top of a robust on-chain infrastructure and comprised of the Enjin Platform, Marketplace, Wallet, Beam, and other tools and services, the Enjin ecosystem enables game industry businesses to increase revenue, gain a competitive edge, and innovate in previously impossible ways.
Forged in gaming, Enjin’s tools and services can also be used by companies of all sizes and industries seeking to create blockchain products or utilise tokenised digital assets as part of their acquisition, retention, engagement, and monetisation strategies.
The Enjin ecosystem is fuelled by Enjin Coin (ENJ), an Ethereum-based cryptocurrency used to directly back the value of Enjin-powered blockchain assets.

COSS DEX

COSS DEX is a spot trading platform which provides cross-chain trading, deep liquidity, fast trade execution and settlement, and enables trading for its own COS token. 50% of trading fees generated on the COSS DEX is shared with COS token holders as part of their Fee Split Allocation (FSA) entitlement.
The platform is not limited to ERC20 tokens such as wrapped-BTC as with most commonly known DEXes — users are now able to trade BTC (core), LTC, BCH, XRP, and more right from their COSS DEX wallet.
COSS DEX operates on the ByteTrade blockchain and has a high speed matching engine supported by the protocol. The “Match-Chain” built on the ByteTrade layer-2 scaling structure provides stable and high- speed order matching services. This is different from any decentralised exchange you have heard of. Users enjoy an on-chain trading experiences as fast as 1 second, which is both fast and secure.

COSS DEX offers:

  • Liquidity — All assets and pairs listed on COSS DEX are supported by market makers who ensure available liquidity for quick order matching.
  • Cross-chain — Non Ethereum assets such as Bitcoin and Litecoin are available to trade from a single multi-coin wallet.
  • Security and ownership — Your private key, your wallet. Your COSS DEX multi-coin wallet is secured on the ByteTrade Open Network blockchain, and you remain in control of your account as long as you have access to your seed phrase or private keys.
  • Free transfers to other COSS DEX users — You can instantly transfer any asset supported on COSS DEX to any other COSS DEX user by simply sending to their username. The transfer is settled on the ByteTrade blockchain and there are no fees for wallet-to-wallet transfers.
We are making every effort to bring only the best digital assets to our users and expand our partnerships.
COSS Team
Official Announcement: medium.com/coss-official/coss-dex-listing-enjin-coin-enj-fae6267674b1
submitted by satyarthm to COSSexchange [link] [comments]

Interview With Eddie Jiang: How CoinEx Is Adapting To The Exchange Space And Growing

Interview With Eddie Jiang: How CoinEx Is Adapting To The Exchange Space And Growing
Written by chaintalk.tv
https://preview.redd.it/v238540taz751.jpg?width=1280&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=2a852e171a74e49da802d7c12fadba452cf4cf43
We recently had the opportunity to interview the VP of ViaBTC Group, Eddie Jiang. ViaBTC Group owns popular crypto exchange CoinEx and ViaBTC Pool. In this interview Eddie discusses being the first exchange to use BCH as the base currency, ViaBTC Pool and integrating with CoinEx, new features and ambassador program, and competing with other exchanges like Binance and Huobi. Please enjoy the interview below.
How come you decided to open up CoinEx to other cryptos other than just BCH?
Eddie Jiang: CoinEx is the world’s first exchange to implement Bitcoin Cash as a base currency. At that time, it was evident that there was a demand for BCH trading markets, and we are the first to explore this opportunity. It also shows our determination to support the BCH’s development.
As CoinEx is developing, our goal becomes bigger and we are aiming at the global market. We need to constantly improve our product diversification to meet the different needs of more users, so we open up to other cryptos. In the past six months, we have listed more than 50 new tokens. Up to now, we have listed 129 cryptos and 313 markets. Besides, in addition to spot trading, CoinEx also supports perpetual contract and other derivatives trading.
How does CoinEx integrate with the ViaBTC Pool?
Eddie Jiang: ViaBTC Group announced a strategic upgrade, which included a new organizational structure, product innovations and service improvements, on 30 May.
As part of the change, the Group has established three dedicated business units (BU): the financial services BU, consisting of ViaBTC mining pool and CoinEx exchange; the infrastructure services BU, including ViaWallet and Blockchain Explorer; and the ecological development BU, focusing on the research and development of public chain technology and the construction of the ecology.
After halving, the combination of mining and finance will become closer and closer. Investing in mining machines is like buying a Bitcoin option. Miners need more flexible financial products to maintain and increase the value of assets, or hedging services. Based on this judgment, the operations of ViaBTC mining pool and CoinEx exchange will be integrated in the future to realize the financial empowerment of the mining pool to meet the diverse financial needs of miners.
Features of this integrated product upgrade can be summarized as: “ The mining pool is the wallet, and the wallet is the transaction.” ViaBTC is the world first mining pool that has a wallet embedded in the mining pool account. Users do not need to transfer the mined coins, and can realize the function of coin exchange within the wallet. For example, they can directly convert the mined coins into USDT to pay electricity bill. What’s more, users can store, deposit and withdraw their revenue, and transfer assets to CoinEx at any time without charge, as well as complete other operations on the exchange, such as purchasing wealth management products for asset preservation and appreciation. In addition, we also provide hedging services. All of the above functions can be completed in one stop in the mining pool, without the need to transfer assets between different platforms.
The exchange empowers the mining pool, and the mining pool will further bring more traffic and resources to the exchange. The two complement each other and development coordinately.
CoinEx has recently added many new features. Can you talk about what new updates were made to the platform and why you made them?
Eddie Jiang: We have always attached great importance to the development of overseas markets since our establishment, and one of our major goals this year is to cover at least 10 different languages speaking markets.
To realize this and to meet the needs of more users worldwide, CoinEx has been continuously optimizing and upgrading its operating strategies, products and services. Our product diversifications are constantly improving. As I said before, we have launched leverage trading, perpetual contract trading, and wealth management products in addition to just spot trading. However, we don’t ignore the importance of spot trading. More mainstream, popular, and high-quality tokens have been listed, and up to now, there are 129 tokens and 313 trading pairs on CoinEx.
During the epidemic, we have never slowed down our development. Lacking of the OTC service has always been a shortage for CoinEx. In March, we partner with Simplex to integrate the first fiat onramp to our platform. People now can buy crypto with their credit cards, which lowers the threshold for more people to enter the crypto world. Moreover, we announced global strategic partnership with Matrixport to provide people with large amount of fiat to crypto needs the OTC service. These newly launched services also help to attract more users.
At the same time, CoinEx has been launched in Arabic, Italian, English, Japanese, Russian, Korean and other 16 languages. Earlier we also carried out product upgrades, making the UI and function sections clearer.
In terms of operations, we launched an upgraded CoinEx Ambassador program in March. To best utilize each ambassador’s personal strengths, there are four categories of CoinEx Ambassador with different responsibilities, namely Referral Ambassador, Marketing Ambassador, Operation Ambassador, and Business Ambassador, which will expand our brand’s exposure and help CoinEx grow into a more international exchange platform.
From March until now CoinEx has seen a 100% increase in user registrations. Why is that and are you able to see where they are coming from?
Eddie Jiang: Because of the efforts mentioned above, in 2020, we’ve seen an exponential increase in activity in just the past few months alone. In this year alone, CoinEx’s daily registered users increased by 100%. These new users mainly come from markets such as the Middle East, Asia Pacific, and more.
Interestingly, we saw an uptick in traffic from the Middle East in March. User growth in Southeast Asia also picked up significantly, newly registered users increased by 133.6% in April.
With Binance, BitMex, Huobi, Bybit, and Deribit, controlling most of the crypto futures and options markets, where do you see CoinEx fitting in? How do you plan to capture market share from these large exchanges?
Eddie Jiang: We won’t compete with others. We focus on ourselves to improve products and our goal is to be better than yesterday.
Our pace is solid and steady, instead of focusing on temporary heat and flow. We have always attached great importance of spot trading, and we are committed to be responsible for users’ investment. We have set up CoinEx Institution, which is dedicated on project research. A listing committee consist of core team members review and vote on projects recommended by the CoinEx Institution. In this way, fraud projects are avoided as much as possible.
Besides, we will focus on niche areas with great potential. For example, Southeast Asia and the Middle East. CoinEx can serve users in those countries well by providing a platform with rich cryptos to trade, and will pay more efforts on refined operations in different countries.
Moreover, CoinEx has a very complete ecosystem. Financial services, infrastructure, and ecological development, the three business units complement each other. The infrastructure BU is our cornerstone and is positioned as a defensive product; the financial service BU is a cash cow and is positioned as an aggressive product; the ecological development BU focuses on the public chain ecology and is the future infrastructure.
What is the geographical breakdown of the CoinEx userbase?
Eddie Jiang: The current proportion of CoinEx’s overseas users has reached 80% of the total registered users, and mainly in Australia, Southeast Asia, North America, Middle East and South Korea.
Do you have plans to focus on any certain jurisdictions? How will you do that?
Eddie Jiang: When we evaluate regions, two things matter: policy and potential.
Whether an exchange’s business expansion in a region is smooth or not largely depends on the region’s policies. If the region is not very friendly towards cryptocurrency or has repeated attitudes, there will be more difficulties and the cost will be much higher.
For a region’s development potential, we need to think about the demand and market development status. South Korea, Southeast Asia, the Middle East and other regions are all areas with good potential for cryptocurrency development. Compared with Europe and America, policy risks in these countries are lower, and the supervision mechanism is relatively complete. The public has a high degree of awareness of cryptocurrencies. Besides, some regions or countries have inflation problems due to political and economic reasons.
CoinEx will continue to focus on the Middle East and South Asia, which are relatively niche. India has just lifted ban on cryptocurrency trading this year, and there are many cryptocurrency investors in Indian. CoinEx can serve them well by providing a platform with rich cryptos to trade. More people in the Middle East are interested cryptos, especially in countries that are subject to economic sanctions or high inflation. For those people, cryptocurrencies are one of the best choices for asset preservation.
Since the CoinEx Ambassador program launched in March, it has been almost three months. We are conducting the second round of ambassador recruitment. This time, we will use the power of ambassadors to expand our recruitment coverage and strive to attract more crypto enthusiasts from all over the world to grow together with CoinEx. Moreover, we will launch the National Expansion plan and leverage on the CoinEx and ViaBTC mining pool resources, to further explore the Russian market. At the market level, we will make more PR efforts in local markets, and start refined operations.
What is CoinEx Chain and CoinEx DEX?
Eddie Jiang: CoinEx Chain is a public chain built on the Tendermint consensus protocol and the Cosmos SDK. It consists of three dedicated public chains parallel to each other. Among these three chains, CoinEx DEX meets the most basic needs of DeFi for token issuance, transfer, and transactions. The Smart Chain is designed to meet the needs of complex financial scenarios and delivers programmable cash. The Privacy Chain facilitates privacy and security.
On November 11, 2019, we took the lead in launching the Mainnet of CoinEx DEX. CoinEx DEX is the world’s first public chain dedicated to decentralized transactions. Users can easily manage their digital assets on it.
CoinEx DEX can fully satisfy the following conditions: users have private keys at their own disposal; transfers and transactions are all completed on-chain, which is 200% transparent and checkable; the issuance, transfer, and transaction of tokens do not require review or permission; the community governance and operation is decentralized, similar to EOS, and validators are introduced to the community ecosystem construction and governance. There are currently 41 validators.
It also has extreme performance. TPS reaches as high as 10,000 and transactions are confirmed within seconds. The transaction fee, 0.0001 US dollars for each transaction, is negligible.
Third, it’s simple and easy to use. The new operation interface design helps beginners get started quickly; with the one-click token issuing module, users only need to fill in a few items to issue tokens; the built-in automated market-making module guarantees liquidity.
How will CoinEx DEX improve the decentralized exchange space that has been unable to gain much adoption?
Eddie Jiang: There are many challenges and difficulties facing centralized exchanges. The first difficulty is security. Security is a huge concern for CEXs. Over the last 10 years, hackers have stolen more than $1.5 billion from centralized exchanges. In fact, research groups estimate that hackers stole somewhere between $950 Million and $1 Billion from centralized exchanges in 2018 alone. There were also incidents of coin thefts in other exchanges in 2019. Many exchanges, such as Mt. Gox, Youbit, were forced to file for bankruptcy and shut down as a result of hacks.
The second is high management costs. Centralized exchanges need to list a large number of cryptocurrencies and each of them have different trading pairs. That entails huge efforts in development and maintenance and, thus, high management costs.
The last is global policies. Cryptocurrency is faced with different regulatory policies in different countries. Every time a centralized exchange enters a country, it needs to adapt itself to local regulatory policies for compliance. This is a holdback for the exchange’s rapid market expansion globally. Such adaptation will also bring a huge learning cost for the exchange team.
Obviously, these problems can be well solved by DEX. CoinEx DEX is a true DEX with full open source and full community governance, as well as without depending on official nodes, websites, wallets, etc. On DEX, users are able to in charge of their own private keys and assets all by themselves. Their assets are more safe and secure. Transfers and transactions are all completed on-chain, which is 200% transparent and checkable; and the issuance, transfer, and transaction of tokens do not require review or permission. What’s more, CoinEx DEX provides a great and convenient user experience.
How will CoinEx Chain and DEX help the crypto industry as a whole?
Eddie Jiang: The public chain is the cornerstone of the blockchain industry. CoinEx Chain has the parallelism of multiple dedicated public chains, each of which performs its own functions, by cross-chaining for both high performance and flexibility.
CoinEx Chain is committed to building the next generation of blockchain financial infrastructure. It is a more complete ecosystem built around the DEX public chain. The DEX public chain is a dedicated public chain developed specifically for token issuance and trading and the biggest improvement on trading speed, so it only supports the necessary functions, not smart contracts.
But smart contracts are the foundation for building more complex financial applications. Outside the DEX public chain, CoinEx Chain also includes a Smart Chain that supports smart contracts.
Moreover, as privacy issues on the current blockchain have been criticized, it is one of the core tasks of CoinEx Chain to safeguard users’ privacy. Similar to the Smart Chain, the Privacy Chain specifically supports transaction privacy protection. With cross-chain circulation, it can improve the privacy characteristic of the entire CoinEx Chain ecosystem.
Nowadays, 1.7 million people in the world have no bank accounts; however, among them, two thirds are smartphone users with huge demands for financial services. The public chain will empower DeFi applications’ development and popularization, not only help more companies to seize the huge market opportunity, but also to bring lasting transformations and improvements in people’s lives.
With so many crypto exchanges, what is the future outlook of CoinEx when it comes to the crypto exchange space?
Eddie Jiang: It has been nearly 3 years since CoinEx has been launched, but it’s quite young for an entrepreneurial team. We have seen too many projects’ failures due to governance issues. CoinEx has a very elite team with high technical and management capabilities. In terms of business, CoinEx has gradually developed with diversified business and a complete ecosystem. It’s clear that the market will still grow very fast in the future, and the market size is still very large. We will continue to improve our products, put more efforts in marketing and operations, as well as look for more high-quality projects, to increase the number of users and transactions on the platform. Lay a solid foundation, and I’m sure the time will come for us to shine.
What updates is the CoinEx team most excited for?
Eddie Jiang: We are very excited about the National Expansion Plan which will be launched later this year. It is an important part in CoinEx’s globalization strategy. We will actively explore some new markets while consolidate the original ones. CoinEx will set aside 10 million US dollars to set up a “Pioneer Fund” to support this plan. This fund will be used to support local cryptocurrency projects and promote the development of the local cryptocurrency communities through investment or cooperation. Our goal this year is to invest in projects and communities that are conducive to expanding the CoinEx ecosystem in countries with high development potential.
Original article
Click HERE to register on CoinEx
submitted by CoinExcom to btc [link] [comments]

TkeyNet: release date, a brief analysis of the system, future plans

TkeyNet: release date, a brief analysis of the system, future plans

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During the development of the project, we published 3 documents about the technology that we are developing and preparing for the market. Some decisions were changed, but the main idea and goal remained the same — effective financial management.
Since the ICO boom, several years have passed, blockchain and cryptocurrencies have become synonymous and are perceived only as a means of earning money and the obvious advantages of using the technology itself in combination with others are of little interest to anyone. A user, business representatives, or some government officials associate the word “blockchain” directly with cryptocurrency or Bitcoin, without thinking about using systems built on a distributed registry in the current reality.
As we mentioned above, during the development of the project, several documents were published in which we announced our technology and clearly said that we are mixing modern concepts and approaching the market from an economic and scientific point of view, borrowing the best from Bitcoin, Ethereum, DASH, and other alternative currencies.
It is important to note that the concept of Bitcoin or Monero will be different from the concept of TkeyNet. These are other areas and practical application that some market participants may perceive as similar, but this is far from the case.
“When you innovate, you must be prepared for a prolonged lack of understanding of your actions on the part of your environment. You can do something you believe in, but for a long time, people who only wish you well may criticize your endeavors. When faced with such criticism, ask yourself — Are they right? And if you answer this question positively, accept the criticism and adjust your work accordingly. If the answer is negative, if you are firmly convinced of your rightness, you should prepare for a long defense, defending your positions. This approach is a key component of innovation.” ©
The idea of Bitcoin is beautiful, even if it has not yet been accepted by society as planned, but at least the idea of using Bitcoin as a means of accumulating value and storing savings has a place to be. Bitcoin actively strives for a high price mark and dominates the market by more than 50%, and this is a great result. Bitcoin set the necessary vector for many developers around the world, people were able to review the systems used and make their own decisions based on the Bitcoin core, for example, DASH or Ethereum, and users, in turn, learned about such a phenomenon as cryptocurrency.
In General, what was this introduction for? That TKEY should be considered as a universal asset, without defining it as a cryptocurrency. The question may immediately arise, why is this so? It doesn’t have explicit currency properties? Bitcoin also does not have the properties of cash but is called a cryptocurrency, and the types of applications of the peer-to-peer payment system Bitcoin and TkeyNet can differ significantly from each other.
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The purpose of this publication is to tell you about the new features of TkeyNet, when the official transition to the new Protocol will take place, and why TKEY is a universal asset that simply needs liquidity? In General, we will talk about the clear advantages of switching to new technologies that we have been striving for so long and about your benefits of using them accordingly.

What is TkeyNet, and what are its advantages?

TkeyNet is an infrastructure that combines various solutions for users, businesses, and the public sector. Secure corporate networks, payment processors, liquidity, cross-border payments, trading tools, information security, instant exchanges, investment tools. One platform — millions of opportunities.
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When creating TkeyNet, we immediately turned to e-cash protocols, concepts of electronic currencies, considered the movements of Bank international transfers, and also drew attention to the obvious complexity of these systems. Therefore, to build a high-quality architecture of TkeyNet, the team took as a basis — blockchain technology, cryptography, payment and banking system, electronic cash protocols, exchanges, stock markets, DHT, and other p2p networks.
Now more than ever, businesses, users, and most financial market participants need reliable and modern systems that will meet the needs of the market.
For example, a user wants to quickly send funds to another user, and they do not want to think about how the blockchain works and who the “miners” are and what they do for the network. Any of us want to open the app and click a few buttons on the screen to pay for a particular service or send money to relatives abroad and the most importantly, know that the funds will reach you quickly and with a minimum Commission. Or let’s say you came to India, you have some funds in Bitcoin, but you would like to pay for your purchases in the local currency — the Indian rupee without extra conversions.
You are the owner of a payment system or Bank, and you want to receive % for conversion transactions, or banks want to create their consortium for cross-border payments. Either you are an entrepreneur and plan to open an exchange or trading platform for trading various assets, not necessarily digital, but, for example, gold and diamonds, or you are a young and purposeful startup team and want to quickly launch your Digital Bank, or you do not want to do business, and you have several million euros or dollars, you want to get % of their use.
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TkeyNet makes these features available to all participants.
As we can see with you, there are quite a lot of use cases, and it may seem that TKEY is again torn into 100500 different directions, but this is far from the case. Here, a specific and clear direction is Finance and its movement.

How TkeyNet works

Remember, we said that — “to develop the platform on a global level, it is necessary to reach a consensus between government regulation, business, and society. We understand that it is impossible to achieve 100% of this, but it is possible to create favorable conditions favorable to all parties.”
How will the system work? All participants are connected to the system using TkeyNet technology that allows the financial gateway to control their transactions with increased speed, transparency, and efficiency. Independent verification servers constantly compare their transaction records. To hack the system, you will need to get access to all the devices that are logged in.
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TkeyNet solutions offer a cryptographically secure, end-to-end payment flow with the immutability of transactions and redundancy of information contained in them. It is developed to meet each financial gateway’s risk, privacy, and compliance requirements. Since the software is developed to be easily integrated into the existing financial infrastructure, it minimizes any integration costs and failures, and also meets international standards (ISO, etc.).

TkeyNet can be a neutral utility for financial institutions and systems

A gateway is an organization that allows users to invest money and take money out of a pool of liquidity. The gateway accepts currency deposits from users and issues balances to the TkeyNet blockchain.
TkeyNet Protocol provides a single source of truth for counterparties while maintaining the confidentiality of payment data of Bank clients.
TKEY is a universal bill (digital obligation) in the distributed registry TkeyNet.
Gateways install specialized software for interacting with the distributed registry and other system participants. Users, brokers, and other participants interact with the system via mobile or web interfaces. Gateways act as a link between the distributed registry, brokers, users, and other services that allow you to make quick transactions.
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The participants of the system make payments between themselves by using cryptographically signed transactions denominated in digital obligation. This type of transaction uses an internal registry.
In the case of working with Fiat currency and other assets, such as securities and precious metals, the registry records the amounts owed with assets presented as debt obligations. All accounts and transactions are cryptographically secure and verified algorithmically. Payments can only be authorized by the account holder, and all payments are processed automatically, without any third parties or intermediaries. The TkeyNet Protocol checks balances and accounts inside the system for transferring payments and sends payment notifications with minimal delay, which ensures fast calculations in the system.
For more specialized solutions can be created by the Central gateways and the gateways just. A Central gateway is an organization that allows users to invest money and take money out of the liquidity pool. Gateway is an organization that interacts with the Central gateway. Accepts and exchanges digital liabilities for other assets, such as securities.
TkeyNet globally reduces the number of different expenses and automates operational tasks, simplifies and reduces the cost of conducting monetary transactions, and improves traditional financial services.
We understand that it is not easy to tell all the principles of the TkeyNet system in a single publication, especially one that deals with neither one nor two issues. Therefore, you should consider this material as a basis, a base that will help you learn the information that is related to the TkeyNet Protocol most easily after the release of TkeyNet.
Moving a little away from corporate solutions, we suggest you recall some theses from our roadmap, which was published on the official website in the period from September 2018 to November 2019:
“The introduction of the exchanger in web wallets and the app will allow users to send money in one currency, and the recipient will receive it in another currency. For example, a user can buy Tkeycoin for dollars and exchange it for euros or Bitcoin or Ethereum at the current exchange rate.This functionality provides full control of funds through a single trusted and most secure source. Users no longer need to create multiple accounts on third-party resources to make an exchange into a particular currency.With the development of the network, it is possible to implement a multi-exchange that works on the principle of a payment bridge, when the user sends funds to Tkeycoin, and the recipient chooses the receiving currency, let’s say Litecoin, the funds are automatically converted” ©
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We wrote above that TKEY can in principle be used as a universal asset, acting as a digital obligation or an asset as an exchange. By the way, references to this were also published on the official website — tkeycoin.com. In simple words, using one of our web interfaces, you can access TKEYRUB or TKEYUSD or any other asset, such as TKEYGOLD.
TKEYUSD, TKEYRUB, and TKEYGOLD are symbols and can be called differently in the system, for example, TKUSD or GOLDTKEY, so now they should be considered as an example.

Why is TKEY a universal asset?

As before, you can easily and quickly send TKEY to any member of the network and TKEY will have liquidity on the exchange also, TKEY allows you to fast exchange for euros, dollars, or other currencies.
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For the interface, the applications will display functions of digital assets 1:1 to a particular currency, for example, TKEY to RUB, TKey to EUR, or TKEY to Dirhams or TKEY to the pound and vice versa, respectively.
https://preview.redd.it/0ipx86fqc1b51.png?width=700&format=png&auto=webp&s=a406e9c0f181a5d0b1ecde347511954ba61bf433
Therefore, as we said above, TKEY should not be regarded as a cryptocurrency, it is a universal unit inside the system TkeyNet, which may refer to transaction information as exchanges of obligations between banks and transaction TKEY -> TKEY between users, or to carry information about the exchange on the exchange or the exchange of digital assets or gold variations quite a lot, for most of the functions we describe in the release day TkeyNet.

What are the advantages for companies and developers?

First of all, we strive to open the doors for all platform participants. Only through synergy and cooperation can we accelerate the pace of development of the entire system and the introduction of new technologies in the market.
The platform will open doors for developers, who in turn can create technological solutions based on TkeyNet. A working environment will be created, and integration with the TkeyNet platform will be as easy as with the documented SDK or plug-ins. In the course of development, API documentation and ready-made SDKs for developers will be published.
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This will make it easy to use and implement TkeyNet technology in various types of applications, for example, you want to create fast exchanges, we provide you with a framework, back-end, and API, and you create a front-end and launch your service, get your Commission, and are an independent project in the market. An important point is that integration into the existing infrastructure takes place while maintaining the decentralization of the TkeyNet system so that all its internal and external operations remain confidential and verified at the same time.

What are the advantages for users?

This means getting a universal tool for working with financial markets and easily converting an asset into any other asset: euro, dollars, or gold.

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Also, TKEY owners should clearly understand that the more the system develops and there are more participants, namely the corporate segment, projects, and partners, the company will be more stable and thus the project assets will grow stronger.
The popularity of the platform and trust in it directly affects the price of assets, these are the key points of growth signs, the wider and more influential the spread of the company in various areas, the higher its performance in the market.

When will the long-awaited transition to TkeyNet take place?

What changes will be made to the products?

As you understand, everything will change, and this is for the better. At a minimum, products will become faster, lighter, safer, and more versatile.
Changes and new releases will be released as soon as they are ready. In TkeySpace, the TKEY libraries will be rewritten under TkeyNet. A web version of the wallet will appear, and eventually, an application with an exchange interface will be released for quick trading and exchange of various assets, not limited to digital ones. The Tkey Messenger will be adapted for TkeyNet and will be released for previously announced platforms: iOS, Android, Linux, macOS, Windows immediately with the ability to translate directly in the messenger. We will tell you about the messenger architecture on the release day.
All changes and releases will be published and announced after the release of TkeyNet.

What is radically new in TkeyNet?

There will be funds, the Protocol will become much more universal, as well as the TKEY itself. The Protocol will also exclude the possibility of attacks that could have been in Core 1.0, also, the principles of the platform will change. We will publish all technical specifications on the day of release.

Timeline for switching to TkeyNet

The transition to TkeyNet will not take place until August 2020. We will release news and instructions for switching to TkeyNet, so we recommend that you subscribe to the newsletter immediately: https://tkeycoin.com/en/newslette.

Listing on crypto exchanges

The liquidity of the TKEY asset is urgently needed for the development of the entire TkeyNet system, so the company will provide trading platforms for TKey trading and exchange.

Conclusion

The introduction of technologies using digital currencies will create the fastest transition of users and the corporate market to a new level.
FinTech direction makes it possible to manage finances in the most efficient and secure way, without violating the law. This system simplifies, reduces the cost of conducting monetary transactions, and actually improves traditional financial services.
The solution is interesting to everyone who works with money and is used to getting maximum efficiency from it: business, investors, traders, users of banking solutions, the corporate segment, etc. When using the system, large businesses get solutions for interacting with customers online, without using specialized points.
We, in turn, are open to various offers and cooperation on flexible terms. If you have any suggestions or interesting concepts, please contact us at [[email protected]](mailto:[email protected]).
submitted by tkeycoin to Tkeycoin_Official [link] [comments]

AMA Recap: Heatherm Huang, Co-Founder of Measurable Data Token, discusses how Alternative Data rise midst of Covid Wave

AMA Recap: Heatherm Huang, Co-Founder of Measurable Data Token, discusses how Alternative Data rise midst of Covid Wave

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Guest Bio
Heatherm Huang
Huang is the Co-Founder of Measurable Data Token (MDT), a decentralized data exchange ecosystem connecting users, data providers, and data buyers and denominates the value of data.
As a Serial Entrepreneur, Huang got himself involved in the Research & Development of the world’s first ever talk-and-hold voice chat system, TalkBox, then the number one mobile chat application in China and across Southeast Asia in 2010. The hype around Talkbox had Tencent offering to acquire the mobile chat application that was turned down. Tencent then released a new version of Wechat, that holds the same talk-and-hold voice chat system that Talkbox has, now familiar to all,and it was at that time that Wechat broke the telecommunications industry. Talkbox and its competitors faded in the industry soon after.
Huang’s Talkbox venture was adapted in Chinese drama, Entrepreneurial Age, with renowned celebrities, Xuan Huang and Angelababy being the main characters.
Kiana Shek
Kiana formerly worked as Deputy General Manager of Business at Baidu. Along with her strong financial education background, Kiana holds rich experience in Big Data, AI, finance & international business development. She joined DigiFinex as Co-Founder at the end of 2017, and is committed to build a secure, convenient and transparent environment for high-quality blockchain asset transactions for users globally. She is also an active speaker at different industry conferences around the globe.

The AMA
Kiana Shek (Left) & Heatherm Huang (Right)
Kiana: Hi Heatherm, it's our honor to have you here with us today. Could you please give us an introduction of MDT?
Heatherm: Hi Kiana, my pleasure to be here today. Definitely. The MDT is a blockchain-based distributed computing platform with smart contracts securely stored in the Ethereum blockchain. It denominates the value of data in this new economy. It connects users, data providers, and data buyers and denominates the value of data. The MDT launched two products:
  1. MyMDT Data Wallet, a decentralized application (Dapp) based on Ethereum that allows users to get rewarded for sharing anonymous data points and is a user-oriented portal in the MDT ecosystem.
  2. Measurable AI, a business-oriented alternative data analysis platform that turns anonymous data into sophisticated consumer insights.
Kiana: That's such an interesting concept. I am curious to know, and I'm sure so does everyone, how did MDT come about?
Heatherm: The mission behind MDT is to solve our own problems. Back in 2016, our team started venturing into data under the guidance under the guidance of Gmail creator, Paul Buchheit. Paul mentioned that the most valuable thing about Gmail is not the service itself, but the data. Gmail data enables Google to create personalized and intelligent products for its users, and helps Google build better artificial intelligence. Our product, Measurable AI, is also built to understand the market by gathering electronic receipts from billions of online consumers, thereby increasing consumer data value. The more familiar we are with the big data industry, the better we can understand its problems. In data, privacy and traceability have always been contradictory issues. Although Google uses user data to provide better services to users, it is still resisted by users to date.
As data providers, we often try to prove that our data sources are real, and all data points come from real users of our own platforms. However, to prove this, the privacy and anonymity of real users will be compromised to some extent. On the other hand, data buyers also find it a challenge to ensure that the data products they will get are effective. In data, blockchain can solve this problem. After many years of exploration in the field of consumer products and big data, our team realized that we have to compensate consumers who have contributed valuable data.
We finally launched MDT at the end of 2017. We believe that the monetization of user data will be ubiquitous in the future, and we hope to use the results we have established to start this ecosystem.
Kiana: Thank you so much for explaining in such detail. I want to know who your target markets are and how you strategize in marketing your products across different regions of the world?
Heatherm: Southeast Asia, China, Brazil, and India will be our main target markets. They all have huge potential to expand and sustain the development of Measurable AI. At present, the main promotion channel of MyMDT data wallet is still the mainstream of users based on MailTime. Our upcoming independent app that focuses on the concept of "data cashback" will also become a major promotion channel, and its audience covers not only the cryptocurrency user group, but also the mainstream user group. Promotion services in different regions will be tailored to local market conditions. For example, the most common transaction data in the European and American markets is still credit card data, but in some emerging markets such as China, it is mobile payment data, and the consumer behavior and habits of users are also different. In different countries and regions, we will also adopt different promotion forms and modify our products to suit varying needs.
Kiana: Got it. Back to today's topic, what is MDT's alternative data that users should be concerned about? How is it related to MDT?
Heatherm: Alternative data refers to unconventional, unexpected, and unidentified potential data. Unlike traditional data sources such as public financial reports, alternative data is not well known. This is where its value lies. Measurable AI is a blockchain-driven alternative data provider at the present day.
Kiana: I believe users have a new understanding of alternative data now. Is MDT an option for both data providers and crypto asset investors? How will MDT benefit investors?
Heatherm: Alternative data providers are responsible for collecting, cleaning, analyzing and understanding data collected from non-traditional sources. For example, providers can assess the community's response to crypto assets to predict their future value and price movements. Although they are valuable, they do not fully reflect the company's operating conditions.
In today's data-driven era, investors need more than endless numbers on spreadsheets. They need insightful data to make informed decisions in the market. Certain financial markets, such as encrypted assets, do not revolve around traditional financial data sources. Cryptocurrencies like Ethereum or Bitcoin cannot be effectively analyzed through financial statements because their prices are determined by factors other than common data sources. Alternative data fills this gap. As the name suggests, alternative data refers to information obtained from non-traditional sources (such as social media and consumer trends), which helps investors have a deeper understanding of investment tools.
Kiana: The novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is rampant, has Measurable Data been affected in development? What measures have you taken to counter the challenge for the safety of the team? What contribution has MDT made to society against COVID-19?
Heatherm: Due to the pandemic, the MDT team worked at home for 3 months until May when the team returned to office. However, the great impact COVID-19 has on the global economy, the demand for alternative data has increased for hedge fund clients. In the past few months, we have served more than 10 hedge funds and seller research institutions, providing them with first-hand consumer insights for many listed companies to analyze the pandemic's impact on the revenue of these companies and the speed of recovery. A few weeks ago, I accepted an interview with Bloomberg. I mentioned that the recent pandemic and the Luckin Coffee scandal has greatly boosted the demand for alternative data because hedge funds hope to use alternative data to monitor the pandemic's impact on major companies and its recovery rate. This is the value of alternative data.
Kiana: What do Alternative Data providers do? Is MDT an Alternative Data provider and Cryptoasset investor at the same time? How does the data benefit the investor?
Heatherm: Alternative data providers are the ones responsible for collecting, cleaning, analyzing, and making sense of data collected from non-traditional sources. For example, a provider may assess how the community is reacting to a crypto asset to predict its value and price movements in the future. Though valuable, they don't give the full picture of how a company is doing.
In today's data-driven landscape, investors require more than endless numbers on spreadsheets. They need insightful data that is actionable enough for them to make informed decisions in the market.
Certain markets like crypto assets also don't revolve around traditional financial data sources. Cryptocurrencies like Ethereum or Bitcoin cannot be analyzed efficiently with financial statements since their prices are determined by factors outside of commonly used data sources.
Alternative data fill this gap. As the name suggests, alternative data is information derived from non-traditional sources — like social media and consumer trends — that help investors obtain more in-depth insights on investment vehicles.
Kiana: Wow, Alternative Data providers play such a crucial role in the economy. How does MDT ensure that data security and privacy are well protected under regulations like GDPR?
Heatherm: In an increasingly digitized world, huge quantities of "alternative data" are being generated every day which can complement or substitute for traditional financial data (such as information on loan payments, defaults and bankruptcies) and open the door to financial services for previously unserved or underserved customers.
Data protection and privacy require a new way of thinking and preparation as regulatory or institutional frameworks to protect individuals and firms either do not exist or are rapidly outpaced by technological advances.
Kiana: Makes sense. The world will only get more digitized each day. Who do you consider your competitors and why do you think you are better than them?
Heatherm: Projects that share similar ideas of compensating users for sharing rewards are DataWallet, and GXChain.
DataWallet recently pivoted to a data compliance service platform for startups. GXChian also rewards users for sharing data, however, their focus is on users' personal information for credit checking and user profiling.
MDT is focused on anonymous and aggregated consumer transactional data for industry insights' purpose, and we endeavour to never involve any personal data.
Although we both reward users for sharing data points, we share different business models and positioning on what type of data to get involved in and how users can monetize over their data.
We believe the scenarios MDT creates now is more likely to be adopted by the public.
  1. It involves only aggregated and anonymous data points for a transparent purpose
  2. It is easier for users to get started without privacy issues (on blockchain, but accessed through user-friendly dapps
  3. It benefits the data buyers financially and socially for joining an initiative of a company compensating users for data.
Watch
We had a fruitful AMA session with Heatherm Huang, and learnt on how MDT as a decentralized data exchange ecosystem enables for honest, efficient, and transparent trading in the crypto financial market. To watch the AMA Live, click: AMA | Measurable Data Token: Unveil Covid-19 Impacts with Alternative Data
Please stay tuned to our next episode of AMA Live.

Source/s: Measurable Data Token
submitted by DigiFinex to u/DigiFinex [link] [comments]

Anyone tried Prance Gold? Is it an MLM company?

Hey guys!
I came across this company, Prance Gold, and was wondering if anyone had tried the platform? I’m just doing a bit of research because I have experienced in some cryptocurrency MLM niche and just making sure that this isn’t what it is.
Here’s what I found out so far:
  1. From the website, they advertise their 7-hour investment return and this is what sparked my interest for the site. For me this shows that my money won’t be locked-in for a long time.
  2. To earn money for your investment, it operates using an algorithm for its crypto arbitrage. According to the site “Prance Gold Algorithm (PGA) is the highly coveted cutting-edge trading algorithm system developed for high speed triple-directional arbitrage trading on various cryptocurrency exchanges.” I think this is a good thing because a bot does the trade for you, no need to manually do it. Saves a hell lot of time.
  3. It accepts cash and bitcoin which is good for people who want to try crypto trading but doesn’t know how.
From what I found out so far, it’s pretty great and no sign of MLM. What about your experience guys?
Btw, this is the site and where I found all the info I mentioned above.
https://prancegoldholdings.com/
submitted by chesiboi0310 to Crypto_General [link] [comments]

Why i’m bullish on Zilliqa (long read)

Hey all, I've been researching coins since 2017 and have gone through 100s of them in the last 3 years. I got introduced to blockchain via Bitcoin of course, analysed Ethereum thereafter and from that moment I have a keen interest in smart contact platforms. I’m passionate about Ethereum but I find Zilliqa to have a better risk reward ratio. Especially because Zilliqa has found an elegant balance between being secure, decentralised and scalable in my opinion.
 
Below I post my analysis why from all the coins I went through I’m most bullish on Zilliqa (yes I went through Tezos, EOS, NEO, VeChain, Harmony, Algorand, Cardano etc.). Note that this is not investment advice and although it's a thorough analysis there is obviously some bias involved. Looking forward to what you all think!
 
Fun fact: the name Zilliqa is a play on ‘silica’ silicon dioxide which means “Silicon for the high-throughput consensus computer.”
 
This post is divided into (i) Technology, (ii) Business & Partnerships, and (iii) Marketing & Community. I’ve tried to make the technology part readable for a broad audience. If you’ve ever tried understanding the inner workings of Bitcoin and Ethereum you should be able to grasp most parts. Otherwise just skim through and once you are zoning out head to the next part.
 
Technology and some more:
 
Introduction The technology is one of the main reasons why I’m so bullish on Zilliqa. First thing you see on their website is: “Zilliqa is a high-performance, high-security blockchain platform for enterprises and next-generation applications.” These are some bold statements.
 
Before we deep dive into the technology let’s take a step back in time first as they have quite the history. The initial research paper from which Zilliqa originated dates back to August 2016: Elastico: A Secure Sharding Protocol For Open Blockchains where Loi Luu (Kyber Network) is one of the co-authors. Other ideas that led to the development of what Zilliqa has become today are: Bitcoin-NG, collective signing CoSi, ByzCoin and Omniledger.
 
The technical white paper was made public in August 2017 and since then they have achieved everything stated in the white paper and also created their own open source intermediate level smart contract language called Scilla (functional programming language similar to OCaml) too.
 
Mainnet is live since end of January 2019 with daily transaction rate growing continuously. About a week ago mainnet reached 5 million transactions, 500.000+ addresses in total along with 2400 nodes keeping the network decentralised and secure. Circulating supply is nearing 11 billion and currently only mining rewards are left. Maximum supply is 21 billion with annual inflation being 7.13% currently and will only decrease with time.
 
Zilliqa realised early on that the usage of public cryptocurrencies and smart contracts were increasing but decentralised, secure and scalable alternatives were lacking in the crypto space. They proposed to apply sharding onto a public smart contract blockchain where the transaction rate increases almost linear with the increase in amount of nodes. More nodes = higher transaction throughput and increased decentralisation. Sharding comes in many forms and Zilliqa uses network-, transaction- and computational sharding. Network sharding opens up the possibility of using transaction- and computational sharding on top. Zilliqa does not use state sharding for now. We’ll come back to this later.
 
Before we continue disecting how Zilliqa achieves such from a technological standpoint it’s good to keep in mind that a blockchain being decentralised and secure and scalable is still one of the main hurdles in allowing widespread usage of decentralised networks. In my opinion this needs to be solved first before blockchains can get to the point where they can create and add large scale value. So I invite you to read the next section to grasp the underlying fundamentals. Because after all these premises need to be true otherwise there isn’t a fundamental case to be bullish on Zilliqa, right?
 
Down the rabbit hole
 
How have they achieved this? Let’s define the basics first: key players on Zilliqa are the users and the miners. A user is anybody who uses the blockchain to transfer funds or run smart contracts. Miners are the (shard) nodes in the network who run the consensus protocol and get rewarded for their service in Zillings (ZIL). The mining network is divided into several smaller networks called shards, which is also referred to as ‘network sharding’. Miners subsequently are randomly assigned to a shard by another set of miners called DS (Directory Service) nodes. The regular shards process transactions and the outputs of these shards are eventually combined by the DS shard as they reach consensus on the final state. More on how these DS shards reach consensus (via pBFT) will be explained later on.
 
The Zilliqa network produces two types of blocks: DS blocks and Tx blocks. One DS Block consists of 100 Tx Blocks. And as previously mentioned there are two types of nodes concerned with reaching consensus: shard nodes and DS nodes. Becoming a shard node or DS node is being defined by the result of a PoW cycle (Ethash) at the beginning of the DS Block. All candidate mining nodes compete with each other and run the PoW (Proof-of-Work) cycle for 60 seconds and the submissions achieving the highest difficulty will be allowed on the network. And to put it in perspective: the average difficulty for one DS node is ~ 2 Th/s equaling 2.000.000 Mh/s or 55 thousand+ GeForce GTX 1070 / 8 GB GPUs at 35.4 Mh/s. Each DS Block 10 new DS nodes are allowed. And a shard node needs to provide around 8.53 GH/s currently (around 240 GTX 1070s). Dual mining ETH/ETC and ZIL is possible and can be done via mining software such as Phoenix and Claymore. There are pools and if you have large amounts of hashing power (Ethash) available you could mine solo.
 
The PoW cycle of 60 seconds is a peak performance and acts as an entry ticket to the network. The entry ticket is called a sybil resistance mechanism and makes it incredibly hard for adversaries to spawn lots of identities and manipulate the network with these identities. And after every 100 Tx Blocks which corresponds to roughly 1,5 hour this PoW process repeats. In between these 1,5 hour no PoW needs to be done meaning Zilliqa’s energy consumption to keep the network secure is low. For more detailed information on how mining works click here.
Okay, hats off to you. You have made it this far. Before we go any deeper down the rabbit hole we first must understand why Zilliqa goes through all of the above technicalities and understand a bit more what a blockchain on a more fundamental level is. Because the core of Zilliqa’s consensus protocol relies on the usage of pBFT (practical Byzantine Fault Tolerance) we need to know more about state machines and their function. Navigate to Viewblock, a Zilliqa block explorer, and just come back to this article. We will use this site to navigate through a few concepts.
 
We have established that Zilliqa is a public and distributed blockchain. Meaning that everyone with an internet connection can send ZILs, trigger smart contracts etc. and there is no central authority who fully controls the network. Zilliqa and other public and distributed blockchains (like Bitcoin and Ethereum) can also be defined as state machines.
 
Taking the liberty of paraphrasing examples and definitions given by Samuel Brooks’ medium article, he describes the definition of a blockchain (like Zilliqa) as:
“A peer-to-peer, append-only datastore that uses consensus to synchronise cryptographically-secure data”.
 
Next he states that: >“blockchains are fundamentally systems for managing valid state transitions”.* For some more context, I recommend reading the whole medium article to get a better grasp of the definitions and understanding of state machines. Nevertheless, let’s try to simplify and compile it into a single paragraph. Take traffic lights as an example: all its states (red, amber and green) are predefined, all possible outcomes are known and it doesn’t matter if you encounter the traffic light today or tomorrow. It will still behave the same. Managing the states of a traffic light can be done by triggering a sensor on the road or pushing a button resulting in one traffic lights’ state going from green to red (via amber) and another light from red to green.
 
With public blockchains like Zilliqa this isn’t so straightforward and simple. It started with block #1 almost 1,5 years ago and every 45 seconds or so a new block linked to the previous block is being added. Resulting in a chain of blocks with transactions in it that everyone can verify from block #1 to the current #647.000+ block. The state is ever changing and the states it can find itself in are infinite. And while the traffic light might work together in tandem with various other traffic lights, it’s rather insignificant comparing it to a public blockchain. Because Zilliqa consists of 2400 nodes who need to work together to achieve consensus on what the latest valid state is while some of these nodes may have latency or broadcast issues, drop offline or are deliberately trying to attack the network etc.
 
Now go back to the Viewblock page take a look at the amount of transaction, addresses, block and DS height and then hit refresh. Obviously as expected you see new incremented values on one or all parameters. And how did the Zilliqa blockchain manage to transition from a previous valid state to the latest valid state? By using pBFT to reach consensus on the latest valid state.
 
After having obtained the entry ticket, miners execute pBFT to reach consensus on the ever changing state of the blockchain. pBFT requires a series of network communication between nodes, and as such there is no GPU involved (but CPU). Resulting in the total energy consumed to keep the blockchain secure, decentralised and scalable being low.
 
pBFT stands for practical Byzantine Fault Tolerance and is an optimisation on the Byzantine Fault Tolerant algorithm. To quote Blockonomi: “In the context of distributed systems, Byzantine Fault Tolerance is the ability of a distributed computer network to function as desired and correctly reach a sufficient consensus despite malicious components (nodes) of the system failing or propagating incorrect information to other peers.” Zilliqa is such a distributed computer network and depends on the honesty of the nodes (shard and DS) to reach consensus and to continuously update the state with the latest block. If pBFT is a new term for you I can highly recommend the Blockonomi article.
 
The idea of pBFT was introduced in 1999 - one of the authors even won a Turing award for it - and it is well researched and applied in various blockchains and distributed systems nowadays. If you want more advanced information than the Blockonomi link provides click here. And if you’re in between Blockonomi and University of Singapore read the Zilliqa Design Story Part 2 dating from October 2017.
Quoting from the Zilliqa tech whitepaper: “pBFT relies upon a correct leader (which is randomly selected) to begin each phase and proceed when the sufficient majority exists. In case the leader is byzantine it can stall the entire consensus protocol. To address this challenge, pBFT offers a view change protocol to replace the byzantine leader with another one.”
 
pBFT can tolerate ⅓ of the nodes being dishonest (offline counts as Byzantine = dishonest) and the consensus protocol will function without stalling or hiccups. Once there are more than ⅓ of dishonest nodes but no more than ⅔ the network will be stalled and a view change will be triggered to elect a new DS leader. Only when more than ⅔ of the nodes are dishonest (>66%) double spend attacks become possible.
 
If the network stalls no transactions can be processed and one has to wait until a new honest leader has been elected. When the mainnet was just launched and in its early phases, view changes happened regularly. As of today the last stalling of the network - and view change being triggered - was at the end of October 2019.
 
Another benefit of using pBFT for consensus besides low energy is the immediate finality it provides. Once your transaction is included in a block and the block is added to the chain it’s done. Lastly, take a look at this article where three types of finality are being defined: probabilistic, absolute and economic finality. Zilliqa falls under the absolute finality (just like Tendermint for example). Although lengthy already we skipped through some of the inner workings from Zilliqa’s consensus: read the Zilliqa Design Story Part 3 and you will be close to having a complete picture on it. Enough about PoW, sybil resistance mechanism, pBFT etc. Another thing we haven’t looked at yet is the amount of decentralisation.
 
Decentralisation
 
Currently there are four shards, each one of them consisting of 600 nodes. 1 shard with 600 so called DS nodes (Directory Service - they need to achieve a higher difficulty than shard nodes) and 1800 shard nodes of which 250 are shard guards (centralised nodes controlled by the team). The amount of shard guards has been steadily declining from 1200 in January 2019 to 250 as of May 2020. On the Viewblock statistics you can see that many of the nodes are being located in the US but those are only the (CPU parts of the) shard nodes who perform pBFT. There is no data from where the PoW sources are coming. And when the Zilliqa blockchain starts reaching their transaction capacity limit, a network upgrade needs to be executed to lift the current cap of maximum 2400 nodes to allow more nodes and formation of more shards which will allow to network to keep on scaling according to demand.
Besides shard nodes there are also seed nodes. The main role of seed nodes is to serve as direct access points (for end users and clients) to the core Zilliqa network that validates transactions. Seed nodes consolidate transaction requests and forward these to the lookup nodes (another type of nodes) for distribution to the shards in the network. Seed nodes also maintain the entire transaction history and the global state of the blockchain which is needed to provide services such as block explorers. Seed nodes in the Zilliqa network are comparable to Infura on Ethereum.
 
The seed nodes were first only operated by Zilliqa themselves, exchanges and Viewblock. Operators of seed nodes like exchanges had no incentive to open them for the greater public.They were centralised at first. Decentralisation at the seed nodes level has been steadily rolled out since March 2020 ( Zilliqa Improvement Proposal 3 ). Currently the amount of seed nodes is being increased, they are public facing and at the same time PoS is applied to incentivize seed node operators and make it possible for ZIL holders to stake and earn passive yields. Important distinction: seed nodes are not involved with consensus! That is still PoW as entry ticket and pBFT for the actual consensus.
 
5% of the block rewards are being assigned to seed nodes (from the beginning in 2019) and those are being used to pay out ZIL stakers.The 5% block rewards with an annual yield of 10.03% translates to roughly 610 MM ZILs in total that can be staked. Exchanges use the custodial variant of staking and wallets like Moonlet will use the non custodial version (starting in Q3 2020). Staking is being done by sending ZILs to a smart contract created by Zilliqa and audited by Quantstamp.
 
With a high amount of DS & shard nodes and seed nodes becoming more decentralised too, Zilliqa qualifies for the label of decentralised in my opinion.
 
Smart contracts
 
Let me start by saying I’m not a developer and my programming skills are quite limited. So I‘m taking the ELI5 route (maybe 12) but if you are familiar with Javascript, Solidity or specifically OCaml please head straight to Scilla - read the docs to get a good initial grasp of how Zilliqa’s smart contract language Scilla works and if you ask yourself “why another programming language?” check this article. And if you want to play around with some sample contracts in an IDE click here. Faucet can be found here. And more information on architecture, dapp development and API can be found on the Developer Portal.
If you are more into listening and watching: check this recent webinar explaining Zilliqa and Scilla. Link is time stamped so you’ll start right away with a platform introduction, R&D roadmap 2020 and afterwards a proper Scilla introduction.
 
Generalised: programming languages can be divided into being ‘object oriented’ or ‘functional’. Here is an ELI5 given by software development academy: > “all programmes have two basic components, data – what the programme knows – and behaviour – what the programme can do with that data. So object-oriented programming states that combining data and related behaviours in one place, is called “object”, which makes it easier to understand how a particular program works. On the other hand, functional programming argues that data and behaviour are different things and should be separated to ensure their clarity.”
 
Scilla is on the functional side and shares similarities with OCaml: > OCaml is a general purpose programming language with an emphasis on expressiveness and safety. It has an advanced type system that helps catch your mistakes without getting in your way. It's used in environments where a single mistake can cost millions and speed matters, is supported by an active community, and has a rich set of libraries and development tools. For all its power, OCaml is also pretty simple, which is one reason it's often used as a teaching language.
 
Scilla is blockchain agnostic, can be implemented onto other blockchains as well, is recognised by academics and won a so called Distinguished Artifact Award award at the end of last year.
 
One of the reasons why the Zilliqa team decided to create their own programming language focused on preventing smart contract vulnerabilities safety is that adding logic on a blockchain, programming, means that you cannot afford to make mistakes. Otherwise it could cost you. It’s all great and fun blockchains being immutable but updating your code because you found a bug isn’t the same as with a regular web application for example. And with smart contracts it inherently involves cryptocurrencies in some form thus value.
 
Another difference with programming languages on a blockchain is gas. Every transaction you do on a smart contract platform like Zilliqa for Ethereum costs gas. With gas you basically pay for computational costs. Sending a ZIL from address A to address B costs 0.001 ZIL currently. Smart contracts are more complex, often involve various functions and require more gas (if gas is a new concept click here ).
 
So with Scilla, similar to Solidity, you need to make sure that “every function in your smart contract will run as expected without hitting gas limits. An improper resource analysis may lead to situations where funds may get stuck simply because a part of the smart contract code cannot be executed due to gas limits. Such constraints are not present in traditional software systems”. Scilla design story part 1
 
Some examples of smart contract issues you’d want to avoid are: leaking funds, ‘unexpected changes to critical state variables’ (example: someone other than you setting his or her address as the owner of the smart contract after creation) or simply killing a contract.
 
Scilla also allows for formal verification. Wikipedia to the rescue:
In the context of hardware and software systems, formal verification is the act of proving or disproving the correctness of intended algorithms underlying a system with respect to a certain formal specification or property, using formal methods of mathematics.
 
Formal verification can be helpful in proving the correctness of systems such as: cryptographic protocols, combinational circuits, digital circuits with internal memory, and software expressed as source code.
 
Scilla is being developed hand-in-hand with formalization of its semantics and its embedding into the Coq proof assistant — a state-of-the art tool for mechanized proofs about properties of programs.”
 
Simply put, with Scilla and accompanying tooling developers can be mathematically sure and proof that the smart contract they’ve written does what he or she intends it to do.
 
Smart contract on a sharded environment and state sharding
 
There is one more topic I’d like to touch on: smart contract execution in a sharded environment (and what is the effect of state sharding). This is a complex topic. I’m not able to explain it any easier than what is posted here. But I will try to compress the post into something easy to digest.
 
Earlier on we have established that Zilliqa can process transactions in parallel due to network sharding. This is where the linear scalability comes from. We can define simple transactions: a transaction from address A to B (Category 1), a transaction where a user interacts with one smart contract (Category 2) and the most complex ones where triggering a transaction results in multiple smart contracts being involved (Category 3). The shards are able to process transactions on their own without interference of the other shards. With Category 1 transactions that is doable, with Category 2 transactions sometimes if that address is in the same shard as the smart contract but with Category 3 you definitely need communication between the shards. Solving that requires to make a set of communication rules the protocol needs to follow in order to process all transactions in a generalised fashion.
 
And this is where the downsides of state sharding comes in currently. All shards in Zilliqa have access to the complete state. Yes the state size (0.1 GB at the moment) grows and all of the nodes need to store it but it also means that they don’t need to shop around for information available on other shards. Requiring more communication and adding more complexity. Computer science knowledge and/or developer knowledge required links if you want to dig further: Scilla - language grammar Scilla - Foundations for Verifiable Decentralised Computations on a Blockchain Gas Accounting NUS x Zilliqa: Smart contract language workshop
 
Easier to follow links on programming Scilla https://learnscilla.com/home Ivan on Tech
 
Roadmap / Zilliqa 2.0
 
There is no strict defined roadmap but here are topics being worked on. And via the Zilliqa website there is also more information on the projects they are working on.
 
Business & Partnerships  
It’s not only technology in which Zilliqa seems to be excelling as their ecosystem has been expanding and starting to grow rapidly. The project is on a mission to provide OpenFinance (OpFi) to the world and Singapore is the right place to be due to its progressive regulations and futuristic thinking. Singapore has taken a proactive approach towards cryptocurrencies by introducing the Payment Services Act 2019 (PS Act). Among other things, the PS Act will regulate intermediaries dealing with certain cryptocurrencies, with a particular focus on consumer protection and anti-money laundering. It will also provide a stable regulatory licensing and operating framework for cryptocurrency entities, effectively covering all crypto businesses and exchanges based in Singapore. According to PWC 82% of the surveyed executives in Singapore reported blockchain initiatives underway and 13% of them have already brought the initiatives live to the market. There is also an increasing list of organisations that are starting to provide digital payment services. Moreover, Singaporean blockchain developers Building Cities Beyond has recently created an innovation $15 million grant to encourage development on its ecosystem. This all suggest that Singapore tries to position itself as (one of) the leading blockchain hubs in the world.
 
Zilliqa seems to already taking advantage of this and recently helped launch Hg Exchange on their platform, together with financial institutions PhillipCapital, PrimePartners and Fundnel. Hg Exchange, which is now approved by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), uses smart contracts to represent digital assets. Through Hg Exchange financial institutions worldwide can use Zilliqa's safe-by-design smart contracts to enable the trading of private equities. For example, think of companies such as Grab, AirBnB, SpaceX that are not available for public trading right now. Hg Exchange will allow investors to buy shares of private companies & unicorns and capture their value before an IPO. Anquan, the main company behind Zilliqa, has also recently announced that they became a partner and shareholder in TEN31 Bank, which is a fully regulated bank allowing for tokenization of assets and is aiming to bridge the gap between conventional banking and the blockchain world. If STOs, the tokenization of assets, and equity trading will continue to increase, then Zilliqa’s public blockchain would be the ideal candidate due to its strategic positioning, partnerships, regulatory compliance and the technology that is being built on top of it.
 
What is also very encouraging is their focus on banking the un(der)banked. They are launching a stablecoin basket starting with XSGD. As many of you know, stablecoins are currently mostly used for trading. However, Zilliqa is actively trying to broaden the use case of stablecoins. I recommend everybody to read this text that Amrit Kumar wrote (one of the co-founders). These stablecoins will be integrated in the traditional markets and bridge the gap between the crypto world and the traditional world. This could potentially revolutionize and legitimise the crypto space if retailers and companies will for example start to use stablecoins for payments or remittances, instead of it solely being used for trading.
 
Zilliqa also released their DeFi strategic roadmap (dating November 2019) which seems to be aligning well with their OpFi strategy. A non-custodial DEX is coming to Zilliqa made by Switcheo which allows cross-chain trading (atomic swaps) between ETH, EOS and ZIL based tokens. They also signed a Memorandum of Understanding for a (soon to be announced) USD stablecoin. And as Zilliqa is all about regulations and being compliant, I’m speculating on it to be a regulated USD stablecoin. Furthermore, XSGD is already created and visible on block explorer and XIDR (Indonesian Stablecoin) is also coming soon via StraitsX. Here also an overview of the Tech Stack for Financial Applications from September 2019. Further quoting Amrit Kumar on this:
 
There are two basic building blocks in DeFi/OpFi though: 1) stablecoins as you need a non-volatile currency to get access to this market and 2) a dex to be able to trade all these financial assets. The rest are build on top of these blocks.
 
So far, together with our partners and community, we have worked on developing these building blocks with XSGD as a stablecoin. We are working on bringing a USD-backed stablecoin as well. We will soon have a decentralised exchange developed by Switcheo. And with HGX going live, we are also venturing into the tokenization space. More to come in the future.”*
 
Additionally, they also have this ZILHive initiative that injects capital into projects. There have been already 6 waves of various teams working on infrastructure, innovation and research, and they are not from ASEAN or Singapore only but global: see Grantees breakdown by country. Over 60 project teams from over 20 countries have contributed to Zilliqa's ecosystem. This includes individuals and teams developing wallets, explorers, developer toolkits, smart contract testing frameworks, dapps, etc. As some of you may know, Unstoppable Domains (UD) blew up when they launched on Zilliqa. UD aims to replace cryptocurrency addresses with a human readable name and allows for uncensorable websites. Zilliqa will probably be the only one able to handle all these transactions onchain due to ability to scale and its resulting low fees which is why the UD team launched this on Zilliqa in the first place. Furthermore, Zilliqa also has a strong emphasis on security, compliance, and privacy, which is why they partnered with companies like Elliptic, ChainSecurity (part of PwC Switzerland), and Incognito. Their sister company Aqilliz (Zilliqa spelled backwards) focuses on revolutionizing the digital advertising space and is doing interesting things like using Zilliqa to track outdoor digital ads with companies like Foodpanda.
 
Zilliqa is listed on nearly all major exchanges, having several different fiat-gateways and recently have been added to Binance’s margin trading and futures trading with really good volume. They also have a very impressive team with good credentials and experience. They dont just have “tech people”. They have a mix of tech people, business people, marketeers, scientists, and more. Naturally, it's good to have a mix of people with different skill sets if you work in the crypto space.
 
Marketing & Community
 
Zilliqa has a very strong community. If you just follow their Twitter their engagement is much higher for a coin that has approximately 80k followers. They also have been ‘coin of the day’ by LunarCrush many times. LunarCrush tracks real-time cryptocurrency value and social data. According to their data it seems Zilliqa has a more fundamental and deeper understanding of marketing and community engagement than almost all other coins. While almost all coins have been a bit frozen in the last months, Zilliqa seems to be on its own bull run. It was somewhere in the 100s a few months ago and is currently ranked #46 on CoinGecko. Their official Telegram also has over 20k people and is very active, and their community channel which is over 7k now is more active and larger than many other official channels. Their local communities) also seem to be growing.
 
Moreover, their community started ‘Zillacracy’ together with the Zilliqa core team ( see www.zillacracy.com ). It’s a community run initiative where people from all over the world are now helping with marketing and development on Zilliqa. Since its launch in February 2020 they have been doing a lot and will also run their own non custodial seed node for staking. This seed node will also allow them to start generating revenue for them to become a self sustaining entity that could potentially scale up to become a decentralized company working in parallel with the Zilliqa core team. Comparing it to all the other smart contract platforms (e.g. Cardano, EOS, Tezos etc.) they don't seem to have started a similar initiatives (correct me if I’m wrong though). This suggest in my opinion that these other smart contract platforms do not fully understand how to utilize the ‘power of the community’. This is something you cannot ‘buy with money’ and gives many projects in the space a disadvantage.
 
Zilliqa also released two social products called SocialPay and Zeeves. SocialPay allows users to earn ZILs while tweeting with a specific hashtag. They have recently used it in partnership with the Singapore Red Cross for a marketing campaign after their initial pilot program. It seems like a very valuable social product with a good use case. I can see a lot of traditional companies entering the space through this product, which they seem to suggest will happen. Tokenizing hashtags with smart contracts to get network effect is a very smart and innovative idea.
 
Regarding Zeeves, this is a tipping bot for Telegram. They already have 1000s of signups and they plan to keep upgrading it for more and more people to use it (e.g. they recently have added a quiz features). They also use it during AMAs to reward people in real time. It’s a very smart approach to grow their communities and get familiar with ZIL. I can see this becoming very big on Telegram. This tool suggests, again, that the Zilliqa team has a deeper understanding what the crypto space and community needs and is good at finding the right innovative tools to grow and scale.
 
To be honest, I haven’t covered everything (i’m also reaching the character limited haha). So many updates happening lately that it's hard to keep up, such as the International Monetary Fund mentioning Zilliqa in their report, custodial and non-custodial Staking, Binance Margin, Futures & Widget, entering the Indian market, and more. The Head of Marketing Colin Miles has also released this as an overview of what is coming next. And last but not least, Vitalik Buterin has been mentioning Zilliqa lately acknowledging Zilliqa and mentioning that both projects have a lot of room to grow. There is much more info of course and a good part of it has been served to you on a silver platter. I invite you to continue researching by yourself :-) And if you have any comments or questions please post here!
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