What Is Bitcoin, and How Does it Work?

Primecoin

Discussion about Primecoin and its infra. Primecoin is a very innovative cryptocurrency, being the 1st non Hash-Cash PoW crypto, naturally scarce (not artificially), with very fast confirmations (1min), elastic readjusting reward & a useful mining (byproducts are primes). Primecoin is sustainable (miners are guaranteed to have revenues), and decentralized (ASIC/FPGA are not particularly advantaged). Sidechain for decentralized data applications (e.g. Storj) currently in development.
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Myriad - A coin for everyone.

Myriad (XMY) is a Multi-PoW consensus protocol secured by 5 mining algorithms. Each one suits different hardware.
[link]

QuarkCoin Cryptocurrency

Quark is a decentralized digital monetary system. It facilitates sending Quarks to Friends, Family Members Online Payments free of charges and charge-backs. Military Grade Encryption. No Bank or Government Control. Quark coins are based on the original idea of Bitcoin but improved, more secure, faster transaction times and zero fees. With improvements to design and security. There is also a greater coin supply with higher block rewards for miners. Quark is fully Open Source.
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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!
submitted by haveyouheardaboutit to CryptoCurrency [link] [comments]

Giant Call of Duty update....again.

Okay, let my just preface this by saying I haven't really put much thought into this. This is more of just a thought I had that seems weird but also completely possible.
So, the Call of Duty Warzone update is again HUGE! 85 gigs for xbox players to be exact. I started to think why that could be when there was just an update not too long ago that was like 50 gigs or something. There is a lot of controversy around the size of this update, some people may not even be able to fit it on their systems because it is so big!
Thought 1: could this be some sort of blockchain that they are adding on with the update? Think about it, things like bitcoin need someone somewhere processing all these mathematical transactions. If you have ever "downloaded" the bitcoin blockchain you would know that it is actually quite massive! Currently it is at around 270 gigs. So I don't think this is bitcoin, but it could perhaps be some other kind of blockchain technology?
Thought 2: Artificial Intelligence. I think everyone is aware that for an advanced artificial intelligence to exist it would need A LOT of computing power, perhaps millions of gaming systems equipped with decent GPU's? A lot of these gaming systems are often set up to auto-update, ie. turn on in the middle of the night and "update". However, could it be possible that these updates actually just consist of gaming system running some kind of AI script, perhaps even just training an AI. Training an AI can consist of performing operations on a massive dataset. Could this huge update for warzone just be a huge dataset broken up into pieces to be ran on millions of xbox's, later to have the result be sent back to whoever is running this operation? (For anyone that is knowledgeable in CS, I do also find it weird that they wouldn't just stream this data instead of downloading it, but finding out that your xbox streamed 200 gigs of data would seem even more suspicious than just a large update.)
Sounds crazy? Believe me I know! However, this is known as something called Grid Computing. It is used in a range of projects, from the Large Hadron Collider to researching cell structure(ahem, coronavirus). I don't think that this is really that far out there of a theory to be honest, I mean it is a known thing that a lot of researchers use it to make their projects possible, however in most cases it is used with the consent of the computer owner. Check out some of the projects here: Grid Computing projects
I could definitely be wrong, and lets be real, I probably am. The COD update is most likely just a big map or something, however that does beg the question: If this is possible, and very powerful, what is stopping them from doing this? Isn't it weird every time you go to play a game you have to download a 5 gig update or something?
Let me know if you have any thoughts on this!! Very interesting to think about at the very least, and honestly might not be a bad idea to use this for good if the world wasn't so sketchy.
TLDR: Are gaming systems covertly being used in a Grid Computing operation?
submitted by DoWhatIsRIghtYo to conspiracy [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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Mining and Dogecoin - Some FAQs

Hey shibes,
I see a lot of posts about mining lately and questions about the core wallet and how to mine with it, so here are some facts!
Feel free to add information to that thread or correct me if I did any mistake.

You downloaded the core wallet

Great! After a decade it probably synced and now you are wondering how to get coins? Bad news: You don't get coins by running your wallet, even running it as a full node. Check what a full node is here.
Maybe you thought so, because you saw a very old screenshot of a wallet, like this (Version 1.2). This version had a "Dig" tab where you can enter your mining configuration. The current version doesn't have this anymore, probably because it doesn't make sense anymore.

You downloaded a GPU/CPU miner

Nice! You did it, even your antivirus system probably went postal and you started covering all your webcams... But here is the bad news again: Since people are using ASIC miners, you just can't compete with your CPU hardware anymore. Even with your more advanced GPU you will have a hard time. The hashrate is too high for a desktop PC to compete with them. The blocks should be mined every 1 minute (or so) and that's causing the difficulty to go up - and we are out... So definitly check what is your hashrate while you are mining, you would need about 1.5 MH/s to make 1 Doge in 24 hours!

Mining Doge

Let us start with a quote:
"Dogecoin Core 1.8 introduces AuxPoW from block 371,337. AuxPoW is a technology which enables miners to submit work done while mining other coins, as work on the Dogecoin block chain."
- langerhans
What does this mean? You could waste your hashrate only on the Dogecoin chain, probably find never a block, but when, you only receive about 10.000 Dogecoins, currently worth about $25. Or you could apply your hashrate to LTC and Doge (and probably even more) at the same time. Your change of solving the block (finding the nonce) is your hashrate divided by the hashrat in sum - and this is about the same for Doge and LTC. This means you will always want to submit your work to all chains available!

Mining solo versus pool

So let's face it - mining solo won't get you anywhere, so let's mine on a pool! If you have a really bad Hashrate, please consider that: Often you need about $1 or $2 worth of crypto to receive a payout (without fees). This means, you have to get there. With 100 MH/s on prohashing, it takes about 6 days, running 24/7 to get to that threshold. Now you can do the math... 1 MH/s = 1000 KH/s, if you are below 1 MH/s, you probably won't have fun.

Buying an ASIC

You found an old BTC USB-miner with 24 GH/s (1 GH/s = 1000 MH/s) for $80 bucks - next stop lambo!? Sorry, bad news again, this hashrate is for SHA-256! If you want to mine LTC/Doge you will need a miner using scrypt with quite lower numbers on the hashrate per second, so don't fall for that. Often when you have a big miner (= also loud), you get more Hashrate per $ spent on the miner, but most will still run on a operational loss, because the electricity is too expensive and the miners will be outdated soon again. Leading me to my next point...

Making profit

You won't make money running your miner. Just do the math: What if you would have bougth a miner 1 year ago? Substract costs for electricity and then compare to: What if you just have bought coins. In most cases you would have a greater profit by just buying coins, maybe even with a "stable" coin like Doges.

Cloud Mining

Okay, this was a lot of text and you are still on the hook? Maybe you are desperated enough to invest in some cloud mining contract... But this isn't a good idea either, because most of such contracts are scams based on a ponzi scheme. You often can spot them easy, because they guarantee way to high profits, or they fake payouts that never happened, etc.
Just a thought: If someone in a subway says to you: Give me $1 and lets meet in one year, right here and I give you $54,211,841, you wouldn't trust him and if some mining contract says they will give you 5% a day it is basically the same.
Also rember the merged mining part. Nobody would offer you to mine Doges, they would offer you to buy a hashrate for scrypt that will apply on multiple chains.

Alternative coins

Maybe try to mine a coin where you don't have ASICs yet, like Monero and exchange them to Doge. If somebody already tried this - feel free to add your thoughts!

Folding at Home (Doge)

Some people say folding at home (FAH - https://www.dogecoinfah.com/) still the best. I just installed the tool and it says I would make 69.852 points a day, running on medium power what equates to 8 Doges. It is easy, it was fun, but it isn't much.
Thanks for reading
_nformant
submitted by _nformant to dogecoin [link] [comments]

[UPDATE][M] Ryo Currency 0.5.0.0 "Fermi Paradox"

[UPDATE][M] Ryo Currency 0.5.0.0
https://preview.redd.it/o6o6y8g9rwi41.jpg?width=1920&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=fe52faff108d163f476907e004cac1ef47aaa1a9
[M] - Mandatory. The update contains security fixes or contains fork update (wallet will stop working after some height reach).
IMPORTANT: The latest version is 0.5.0.1 (contains minor update after 0.5.0.1)
Meet Ryo Currency 0.5.0.0 update - Fermi Paradox. In this update we will discuss 3 updates and do one announcement in the source code, 2 of them will be the first among any Cryptonote projects:
  • Wallet Scan speedup thanks to ECC and multi-threading library. Increased wallet scan speed when processing blockchain. New Elliptic Curve Cryptography library combined with implemented multi-threading that ustilises user's CPU results in reduced block verification up to 5x times compared with previous modes.
  • Plateau emission curve. Ryo's block reward changes every 6-months following a "Plateau Curve" distribution model. The modification of emission curve was initiated and debated with Ryo community. The following fork will finalise and implement that change.Notice: the difference between previous and this model will take effect at block height 394470.Read more about Ryo plateau emission curve
  • Various code edits, refactoring and minor fixes. There are multiple code fixes and edits that could be considered minor when looked in particular, but when looked in general - result in more than 35.000 lines of code being changed making core code more clean, optimised and bugfixed.Check Ryo Github repository
https://preview.redd.it/qv27xxdarwi41.png?width=2000&format=png&auto=webp&s=34836461eb348619f37f75fbc91e94a58dc065f8
Research and studies of Ryo Dev team showed that current ring signature technology as it is - is obsolete and has too many flaws to be considered as a means for reaching the goal of the second level of of privacy. Therefore we will be replacing ring signatures with second generation ZK-proofs technology in observable future and temporarily downgrade privacy level to 1.
In general, you can consider privacy levels like that:
  • level 0 - everyone can look into your wallet and know your transactions (BTC level)
  • level 1 - nobody can see inside of your wallet, but each note has a serial number (yes, this is real life money level and in CN coins is implemented using stealth addresses)
  • level 2 - notes you have don't have a serial number to a guy that gave you one, and no-one can't know if you spent it later (In CN coins it is implemented using ring signatures - which are the failing ones)
What we are saying is over the past year or two, researches stripped ring signatures of their privacy properties so much, that we think it is no longer fair to say that we (or Monero, which is even worse since it has even smaller ring size compared to Ryo) or any other CN project that uses it - meet the level 2 of privacy.
So, summarising in non-tech words what does it mean - when you are doing a transaction and want to imagine how it looks like in system:
  • bitcoin - "I spent output 10, worth 1 BTC and output 22, worth 0.5 BTC"
  • ring signature (current CN coins) - "I spent output 10, 14, 18 or 20, and output 16, 18, 19, or 22"
  • zk-proof - "I spent something."

Fork is scheduled on block 362000: you can check fork countdown on Ryo Currency website

Please update your wallets before this block, or your previous wallet will stop synchronising after the block 362000:
  • Ryo Wallet Atom: download latest Atom installer when annouced update to version 1.5.0, start it and perform reinstall.
  • Ryo cli binaries: download or compile from source updated binaries from Github version 0.5.0.0 and unzip it, and place your wallet key files in new folder.
  • Pool owners and exchanges are notified about updating their nodes to the latest version before the fork.
Questions you might have regarding the fork:
  • What will happen with mining algorithm - will it change or what does "fork" mean - coin is split on 2? No, "fork" basically means major code update that is being activated on a specified block height. There will be no mining algorithm change or chainsplit.
  • Ryo roadmap indicates that you had in plans reaching 100x ring sizes. In light of future introduction of ZK-proofs does it mean that this is not aplicable? Yes, we eventually will be replacing ring signature technology on ZK-proofs, which is more fundamental change than trying to "beat dead horse" with ring signatures.
  • What about atomic swaps? Ryo roadmap indicates it being planned, is it still possible with introducing ZK-proofs? Yes it is! And we aim to implement this feature after all necessary updates in core code. It is important to have everything implemented and tested before adding that feature.
  • What is a ZK-proof? ZK stands for zero-knowledge. In cryptography, a zero-knowledge proof is a method by which one party (the prover) can prove to another party (the verifier) that they know a value x, without conveying any information apart from the fact that they know the value xYou can read more about zero-knowledge proof (with real life examples) here.
  • Will blockchain grow faster (what about tx size) when moving to ZK-proofs? Overall, transactions and blocks using ZK-proofs will be even smaller in size than pre-fork ring signatures with bulletproofs! Plus it enables transactions to be aggregated together - this is obviously a major scalability gain for Ryo Currency.
  • I heard or as far I understand that ZK-proofs are somewhat less private? Does it mean that you are not privacy-oriented project anymore? No, in short - we decided to do this change to second gen. ZK-proofs, because ring signatures as is are too weak on providing enough for us default level of privacy and overall are considered now as an obsolete technology. So we don't want to say that we have a privacy level of 2, when research shows that it is not.
  • Ok, after 0.5.0.0 fork - will we be using uniform payment ID-s to do transactions on exchanges? Yes. There are no changes regarding usage of payment ID-s and integrated addresses. We will be still using ring signatures, but also are announcing our goal on moving to ZK-proofs.
  • What else is there in plans/ideas you have in development of Ryo? Besides all plans and development ongoing with Ryo (wallets, infrastructure, core code and researches) we also developed and improve Mining platform RagerX. It is a all-in-one mining platform that unites a miner, pplns pool, OS, GUI flasher utillity, pool frontend and has advanced social features as well as 2 level affiliate program. In observable future we will add Cryptonight-GPU mining possibillity.We are implementing RagerX so people can mine CPU coins and Ryo simultaneously. Which means more eyes on Ryo, especially from fresh members.
  • Are the ring signature issues that have been discovered are applicable to other ring signature based coins like Monero? Yes.
https://preview.redd.it/x5jqtb8brwi41.png?width=1000&format=png&auto=webp&s=06a0de33b10014e0fdf1b847939718475cbe6fbe
submitted by RyocurrencyRu to ryocurrency [link] [comments]

Salad MEGATHREAD [FAQs & More]

Hello there Chef, in this thread, you will find a lot of useful information about Salad. If you have any major questions, you can find it in this thread (FAQ's are updated frequently). And of course, if you have any confusions, please feel free to contact us. So without any further ado, lets dive right in! Don't see your question here? Feel free to ask in the comments and we will try our best to answer you.

Salad Related Questions Miscellaneous (Tips & Useful Articles)
What is Salad? How does it make me money? Does Mining hurt my GPU?
How does Salad make a Profit for itself? How does Mining affect my PC?
Will Salad damage my PC? A brief guide on Share Tracking
Do you Support MacOS and Linux? A Gamers Guide to Cryptocurrency and Blockchain
I can't run Salad, can I still earn? What is your computers actual worth?
How much Electricity does Salad use? In Depth description of Cryptocurrency
Can I play games or watch videos while running Salad? Is Mining Profitable?
How can I partner up with Salad? Calculating your Electricity Bills
Does this application sell my Data? Legality of Cryptocurrency Mining
How much of my earning does Salad get? Updating your Graphics Driver for Maximum performance
submitted by usernameisugandian to SaladChefs [link] [comments]

Dogecoin: The Meme That Turned Into A Cryptocurrency With A $300 Million Market Cap, An Important Portal To The Crypto Space

Dogecoin: The Meme That Turned Into A Cryptocurrency With A $300 Million Market Cap, An Important Portal To The Crypto Space
http://www.cypherpunklabs.com/dogecoin-the-meme-that-turned-into-a-cryptocurrency-with-a-300-million-market-cap-an-important-portal-to-the-crypto-space/
Dogecoin (DOGE), a cryptocurrency which now has a market cap of over $300 million, and at one point a market cap in excess of $2 billion, traces its origins back to a Japanese kindergarten teacher who posted pictures of her Shiba Inu in February 2010. There was one particular picture where the Shiba Inu was glaring sideways with raised eyebrows, and for some reason this picture has a similar allure as the Mona Lisa. The picture leaves it open for interpretation as to what the Shiba Inu is thinking, and people began plastering words all over the picture to indicate the dog’s thoughts. This meme was then nicknamed the doge.

https://preview.redd.it/o5a3qeyoxmk31.png?width=500&format=png&auto=webp&s=2d34893576658da1e88576d001c8a40371e65ffd
By 2013 the doge had become a full fledged viral internet sensation, and this simultaneously coincided with the rise of alternative cryptocurrencies. In 2009 the first cryptocurrency, Bitcoin, was released. Around 2013, and perhaps a little before then, people began to fork Bitcoin’s code and create all sorts of alternative cryptocurrencies.
Billy Markus, a programmer from Oregon, decided to create a cryptocurrency that would be more fun and reach a wider audience than Bitcoin. Markus teamed up with Jackson Palmer, a marketer for Adobe Systems, and they made this new fun cryptocurrency a reality. They chose the doge meme as the basis for their cryptocurrency, since it was quite popular at the time, and also adopted the algorithm from Luckycoin, where the block rewards are random like a lottery, unlike the fixed Bitcoin block rewards. Luckycoin derived its code from Litecoin, which is the #1 Scrypt cryptocurrency, and Litecoin itself is a derivation of Bitcoin.
Also importantly, Dogecoin’s Scrypt algorithm made it so miners had a low barrier to entry. Bitcoin mining had already become so competitive that only people with specialized and expensive equipment could realistically mine Bitcoin, whereas Dogecoin could be successfully mined with a GPU or even a CPU on a regular computer. This means anyone interested could easily start mining Dogecoin without spending money on mining rigs.
Further, despite being based on a meme, Dogecoin is decentralized, which puts it ahead of most of the alternative cryptocurrencies. Dogecoin has no premine and no initial coin offering (ICO), meaning all Dogecoins in circulation were distributed via mining, and the market is less prone to centralized dumping. Dogecoin uses the proof of work (PoW) algorithm which ensures the network is decentralized as well, rather than more centralized options like proof of stake (PoS).
Dogecoin launched at the exact right time to ride the dual waves of the doge meme’s popularity and the popularity of new alternative cryptocurrencies, and less than two months after launch Dogecoin had become a major cryptocurrency with a market cap in excess of $60 million.
After that, Dogecoin continued to be quite popular for a couple of reasons. As originally intended, Dogecoin ended up being a fun cryptocurrency, and a community developed around Dogecoin, especially on the Dogecoin subreddit. People began to tip each other Dogecoin constantly, especially since there were on the order of 100 billion Dogecoins, as compared to a maximum supply of only 21 million Bitcoins. This means that someone could easily tip hundreds or thousands of Dogecoins since it is not very expensive, while it is simultaneously exciting.
The general Dogecoin culture of tipping and generosity attracted many new users who had never been involved with cryptocurrency before. Newbies would first start accumulating Dogecoin tips, and then within the community they would learn how to accumulate even more Dogecoin by mining, and this represented a launching point where such users could go on to dive into the rest of the crypto space.
That is the reason why Dogecoin is still a major cryptocurrency to this day and will likely be a major cryptocurrency for the foreseeable future. The Dogecoin community is welcoming, generous, fun, and insightful. Essentially, Dogecoin is an important portal for the crypto space.
submitted by turtlecane to dogecoin [link] [comments]

Monero Deep Dive: The Cryptocurrency To Use If You Want True Anonymity, Far More Anonymous Than Bitcoin

http://www.cypherpunklabs.com/monero-deep-dive-the-cryptocurrency-to-use-if-you-want-true-anonymity-far-more-anonymous-than-bitcoin/
In the early days of cryptocurrency Bitcoin was considered the best payment method for those who wished to stay anonymous. At the time this was true, since Bitcoin required no personal identification information while fiat payment methods like banks and PayPal required a full suite of personal identification information. However, all Bitcoin transactions in history are stored on a publicly accessible block explorer, and with the rise of blockchain forensics it is now possible to figure out who owns a Bitcoin address and what they have been doing with their Bitcoin. Although it is possible to increase Bitcoin’s anonymity by using Tor, VPNs, and CoinJoin, as will be discussed in future Cypherpunk Labs articles, Bitcoin can only be considered pseudo-anonymous rather than fully anonymous.
Nicolas van Saberhagen recognized that Bitcoin lacked full anonymity, in addition to the fact that it is a slow and difficult process to change Bitcoin’s code. Saberhagen proposed to create a new cryptocurrency that was far more anonymous, in addition to correcting some other apparent deficiencies in Bitcoin, and wrote up these ideas in the CryptoNote White Paper.
The first cryptocurrency to utilize the ideas in the CryptoNote White Paper was Bytecoin (BCN), which is a lesser known but still functional stealth cryptocurrency. Bitcointalk user thankful_for_today modified the code from Bytecoin and created BitMonero), but there was community criticism since not everything in the CryptoNote White Paper was adopted. This caused thankful_for_today to apparently abandon the project, but a group of users led by Johny Mnemonic quickly took over and renamed the cryptocurrency Monero (XMR).
One of the most critical pieces of stealth technology that Monero uses is ring signatures. With Bitcoin a transaction is signed with a user’s private key and can be verified with the public key. With a ring signature a transaction is signed by your key as well as the public keys from several other outputs on the blockchain using a triangular distribution method. Essentially, each Monero transaction is signed by a group of keys, and it is not possible to distinguish which key the transaction originated from. This can be thought of as decentralized and trustless mixing, and ultimately ring signatures hide the destination and origin of a transaction.
Eventually Monero upped the ante and implemented ring signature confidential transactions (RingCT), which uses multi-layered linkable spontaneous anonymous group signatures to hide the amount of a transaction. However, RingCT transactions required a large amount of data in order to ensure that the sum of inputs and outputs equaled zero, and bulletproofs were implemented to solve this problem. More about bulletproofs can be read in this paper. Essentially, bulletproofs helped reduce transaction size, lowering transaction fees on the Monero network, and also made it cheaper to create transactions with higher degrees of complexity.
Another critical piece of technology that makes Monero anonymous is stealth addresses. The sender creates a random one-time address for every transaction on behalf of the recipient. This allows a recipient to have just one published address but all of their incoming transactions go to different addresses on the blockchain. Thanks to stealth addresses, only the sender and receiver can determine where a payment was sent, while an outside observer cannot figure that out.
A Monero user can see incoming transactions with their view key, and anyone without the view key cannot see the incoming transactions to any particular address. This view key can be shared, so Monero can be considered optionally transparent, but the default is stealth.
When a Monero user decides to spend their coins, the Monero in a stealth address is broken down into its components and combined with other equivalent components via ring signatures. For example, if 42.42 Monero is sent, then the coins are split into 40 + 2 + 0.4 + 0.02 and combined with other 40’s, 2’s, 0.4’s, and 0.02’s somewhere else in the blockchain. This renders outputs fundamentally indistinguishable, and Unlike Bitcoin’s CoinJoin, no participation from anyone else is needed since already present outputs are being mixed.
Further, Monero tried to increase decentralization of its network by being incompatible with application specific integrated circuits (ASICs) via the CryptoNight protocol. This was originally accomplished by requiring a MB of internal memory, which was unacceptable to ASICs at the time. Also, Monero fit into the L3 cache of modern CPUs, while simultaneously being slower on GPUs, hindering the efficiency of GPU mining firms. That being said, it seems if a cryptocurrency is valuable enough then an ASIC is eventually created for it, and the Monero developers have been in a long term battle where they have to periodically change their mining protocol in order to prevent ASICs from overtaking the network. Monero is expected to release their new mining algorithm, RandomX, in October in order to stomp out the ASICs once again.
It seems the Monero developers are succeeding in their fight against ASIC centralization, and generally Monero is the most profitable cryptocurrency to mine on a personal computer while it is not that profitable with ASICs. This is important because it allows regular joes to mine Monero on their personal computer, decentralizing the network hash rate, as opposed to Bitcoin which is practically impossible to mine on a personal computer and most of the hash rate is in the hands of big mining farms.
Also, Monero uses dynamic block sizes, ensuring low transaction fees and fast confirmation times, as opposed to Bitcoin which often has a clogged mempool which can lead to long waits for confirmations and high transaction fees.
Additionally, Monero technically has an infinite supply since the minimum block reward is 0.6 XMR, and this will be reached in 2040. This ensures that miners will always have an incentive to secure the network long term, even if transaction fees are kept as low as possible. Compare this to Bitcoin where block rewards will approach zero, which may wreck the mining community if transaction fees are not high enough.
Thus, Monero’s ring signatures, RingCT, bulletproofs, and stealth addresses combine to obfuscate the sender, receiver, and amount of the transaction, and transactions are split into chunks that are indistinguishable from other transactions. This provides far more privacy than Bitcoin, since Bitcoin transactions are easily traced on a block explorer. It is clear that Monero is an excellent choice for those that want true anonymity when using cryptocurrency. That being said, it is important to use encrypted messaging as well when organizing a Monero transaction, since anonymity can be compromised if a message regarding a Monero transaction is intercepted.
submitted by turtlecane to Monero [link] [comments]

Bitcoin Gold a Shitcoin Vulnerable to Attack Despite $200 Million Market Cap

Bitcoin Gold a Shitcoin Vulnerable to Attack Despite $200 Million Market Cap

https://preview.redd.it/vddehe8qfo321.png?width=690&format=png&auto=webp&s=44a4111dddd126729769612bd27e1ebc30753e14
https://cryptoiq.co/bitcoin-gold-a-shitcoin-vulnerable-to-attack-despite-200-million-market-cap/
The War On Shitcoins Episode 1: Bitcoin Gold (BTG). The war on shitcoins is a Crypto.IQ series that targets and shoots down cryptocurrencies that are not worth investing in either due to their being scams, having serious design flaws, being centralized, or in general just being worthless copies of other cryptocurrencies. There are thousands of shitcoins that are ruining the markets, and Crypto.IQ intends to expose all of them. The crypto space needs an exorcism, and we are happy to provide it.
There are more than 2,000 cryptocurrencies listed on CoinMarketCap, and Bitcoin Gold (BTG) is near the top at number 25 with a market cap of $207 million. This would seem to indicate that Bitcoin Gold is a major cryptocurrency, but it is simply a copycat of Bitcoin with one key and debilitating difference that makes it worse than Bitcoin. Bitcoin Gold is designed to block ASIC miners, leaving only GPU miners.
The idea was that GPU miners would rally around Bitcoin Gold since GPU Bitcoin miners were disenfranchised by ASIC miners years ago. Ultimately, this decision to only allow GPUs resulted in such a low mining hash rate that Bitcoin Gold is vulnerable to 51 percent attacks, and a serious 51 percent attack has already happened once. Further, Bitcoin Gold has had centralization problems from the very beginning.
When Bitcoin Gold launched in November 2017 the developers did a massive premine of 8,000 blocks, which yielded them about 100,000 BTG. At today’s price $12 this is $1.2 million, and when BTG’s price peaked near $500, this was $50 million. This premine is unfair to other BTG miners, traders, and investors. Supposedly, the premined BTG were placed in an “endowment,” which means the developers will receive all of that money eventually, just not all at once. There is no way to verify if this is even true