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Why i’m bullish on Zilliqa (long read)

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

5 most promising Altcoins for long-term investments | Coinscapture

After the success of Bitcoin and the rise in the price of the first-ever cryptocurrency, many new coins were developed in cryptoworld. In simple words, any coin other than bitcoin is termed as “Altcoins”. These coins are created by tweaking the Bitcoin's or any other existing cryptocurrencies protocol. In the growing world of cryptocurrency, there are more than 3000 cryptocurrencies which came into existence and so it is a tough job to choose the right Altcoin to invest in it. Here are the 5 most promising Altcoins that can help you to narrow your search.
Disclaimer: This guide should not be considered as financial advice. It is highly recommended to do appropriate market research before any investments.

Litecoin

After the successful launch of Bitcoin, Litecoin was the next one to enter the Cryptoworld in 2011. Charlie Lee - a computer scientist created Litecoin by making some technical changes in the bitcoin’s source-code and made it the fastest peer-to-peer currency that enabled instant, near-zero cost payments to anyone across the world. Also, litecoin has a total supply of 84 million with an average block mining time of 2.5 minutes.

Reasons why to choose Litecoin as a Long-Term Investment

  • Improved: Litecoin algorithm is generally easier to mine but difficult to crack The bitcoin mining is highly processed intensive requiring, application-specific integrated circuit devices with high processing capabilities, while Litecoin mining is memory-intensive requiring less cost-intensive graphics processing units (GPU).
  • Faster block-processing rate: The technical changes done on Bitcoin’s source-code allows Litecoin to processes a block at a much faster rate and giving out rewards to the miner faster in every 2.5 minutes as compared to Bitcoin which processes a block in every 10 minutes. Litecoin network have more capacity to handle the transactions than bitcoin's network
  • SegWit upgrade: Litecoin's SegWit upgrade boost the capacity of the number of transactions a block can hold in litecoin's blockchain, thereby speeding up the transaction settlement times and lowering transaction costs.
  • Higher trading volume: The trading of Litecoin has begun since 2011 and since then it was in the top 10 list of coins. The popularity of Litecoins is so much that you won't face any problem selling them in the future which brings less fear of having risk as compared to other new coins.

Ethereum

Ethereum is the second-largest digital currency introduces Vitalik Buterin in late 2015. It has been a popular choice in many industries as its cool feature named Smart Contracts helps developers to build decentralized applications (dApps) on top of its (i.e. Ethereum's) blockchain which helps to avoid fraud, downtime, and control or interference from a third party. Ethereum can also be used for banking and financial service contracts, ICOS, prediction markets, replacing escrow, identity management. The Enterprise Ethereum Alliance founded in 2017 has over 200 organizations that are testing on various versions of Ethereum's blockchain in different industries. Ethereum has a circulating supply of 106,376,346 ETH, the market capitalization of $26,307, 580,992 and faster transaction of 6 minutes as compared to Bitcoin.

Reasons why to choose Ethereum as a Long-Term Investment

  • Multi-purpose usage- Other than trading Ethereum can be used for ICOs, prediction markets, building tokens and many more ways that very few cryptocurrencies can do as good as Ethereum.
  • Safety: The apps built on Ethereum’s blockchain termed as dApps or decentralized apps are significantly safer and more resistant to hacking than the software you use now.
  • Smart contracts: The smart contract feature offers significant business benefits over more traditional conventional forms of cloud computing and transaction-clearing.
  • Initial Coin Offerings: Ethereum is used ICOs (Initial Coin Offerings) that means it acts as a launchpad for new tokens which thereby makes it a valuable platform and price will increase with its use.

Ripple

Ripple is the hot choice in banking and financial institutions as it can be used as an intermediary for quick transaction-processing and settlement service; allowing to transact directly and instantly across national borders. XRP currently has a fast transaction processing time of about 4 seconds and a cheap transaction fee about $0.004 per transaction (which is less than half a cent). It has a circulating supply of 42,181,995,112 and a market capitalization of around 17 billion USD.

Reasons why to choose Ripple as a Long-Term Investment

  • Well distributed: Ripple is an open-source technology, built on the principles of blockchain with an increasing set of validators.
  • Highly Scalable: XRP has the potential to handle 1,500 transactions per second, 24x7, and can scale to deal with a similar throughput as Visa.
  • Highly Stable: The most stable record of Ripple makes it ready for institutional and enterprise use.
  • Global Bank partners: Ripple has partnered with over 100 banks like Bank of America, UBS, Standard Chartered, Barclays, JP Morgan, Santander, and American Express.

Stellar

Stellar offers the fastest and the cheapest online payment and cross-border payment services as compared to the other large companies. Also, it does not use proof of work verification which is time and energy consuming which allows processing a transaction in approx 5 seconds. It has a market capitalization of $2,378,213,121 and a circulating supply of 19.331,689,641.

Reasons why to choose Stellar as a Long-Term Investment

  • Low-cost transactions: Stellar’s payment protocol prioritizes profit, the low transaction time and high operational efficiency translates to a lower cost of transactions.
  • Currency exchanger: Stellar’s platform also acts as a currency exchanger between government-backed currencies, such as dollars to euros.
  • Creating tokens: Launching a token on the Stellar platform is super easy because of the simple programming.
  • Tech elements: Stellar can integrate with elements such as blockchain smart contracts, and multi signatures that enhances the functionality of the payment protocol

Binance Coin

Binance coin is the official coin of the Binance platform that offers a stage for trading cryptocurrencies. Binance is soon launching its own decentralized exchange, Binance DEX that would be available on all platforms, such as Windows, Linux, Mac OS, iOS and Android. BNB has a market capitalization of 4 billion USD and a circulating supply of 141,175,490.

Reasons why to choose Binance Coin a Long-Term Investment

  • Discounts: BNB can be used not only to pay сommissions for transactions on the exchange and also to get additional discounts for each purchase and exchange via Binance
  • Team: BNB has a great team that is ambitious and experienced in the cryptocurrency world
  • Referrals: BNB coin offers a smart referral scheme which attracts many users and thereby grows the platform’s adoption
  • Loyalty: BNB coin is the only cryptocurrency that rewards customers for their loyalty and creating a fair ecosystem within Binance
    https://coinscapture.com/blog/5-most-promising-altcoins-for-long-term-investments
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Humans help the Andalites... Again. Ch.1

The war against the Yeerks was over, both the Andalites and Humans races enjoyed a time of blossoming peace, trade, and prosperity. The Humans faired well in the aftermath of the war, Earth being spared mass commitment or damage, and little loss of life. The Andalites were advanced, but weakened, from the long war against the now defeated and subjugated parasitic slug-like race of Yeerks. The part deer, part scorpion, part human looking Andalite race was slowly recovering from the war and wearily exploring new opportunities for trade with its new "friend", the Humans.
The Andalites are a powerful race, with some of the best technology in their explored corner of the galaxy. A warrior species at heart, Andalites are well developed for combat, with 4 eyes, 2 of those eyes on bendable stalks, 4 strong legs, a deadly fast tail with a scorpion blade, and a bright mind. Though fairly gentle hearted by nature, the Andalite's 100 million or so members nonetheless appreciate the role of the warrior more than almost anything, other than maybe family, being that they live in close knitted groups in their outdoor homes called "scoops".
The Andalites were fairly proud race, and some may call them arrogant about their abilities, technology and their species. They did not think all that much of the Human race and what they could bring to the table, and were naturally suspicious due to the Yeerks betrayal of the Andalites in the past. The Humans, however, proved themselves to be very able at waging war, with a paltry 5 human teenagers and 1 Andalites cadet managing to topple the powerful Yeerk empire with well-timed guerrilla attacks and smart thinking, combined with illegally gifted Andalite morphing technology from the war-price Andalite hero Elfangor.
The Human race lost approximately 90,000 souls from the Yeerk infiltration of Earth. The slug-like Yeerks, who takes over their host's brains and bodies, can perfectly mimic a person and use their memories and brains to help them do so. Thousands of people were killed by their controlling Yeerks who rathered go out fighting then be starved to death from lack of their precious Kandrona rays generators. While few Humans were killed during the actual "war", there were some deaths from the Animorphs guerrilla fighters vs infested humans and free Human vs Yeerk forces. Tens of thousands of civilians were also killed during suicidal bombing attacks on Yeerk infestation centers by the small teenaged Human guerrilla force and their Andalite companion.
The Humans proved themselves to be tenacious, determined, adaptive, quick learning, and good in a fight. Surprising everyone, the Human race managed to beat back an invasion from a species most Humans had no idea existed. Humans did not just beat back the invasion, they managed to take over a pool ship, and transferred its command codes to the Andalite, allowing them to snap up a major yeerk fleet and the Yeerks top ranking general. With the Yeerk high command in turmoil, their top generals all dead or captured due to Humans, and in some cases civil-war between other yeerks, the Andalites were able to use the stolen Yeerk command data and a promise of morphing out of their bodies to subdue the Yeerks and blockade their homeworlds.
Humans were new to the galactic scene, but already were making waves, Human body morph permissions and foodcourt establishments on the Andalite homeworld promised Humans a big bargaining chip in trade with the Andalites. The Andalites did not have mouths themselves but could morph to human to experience taste, and it was becoming a booming trade, helping secure technology transfer deals to the Humans benefit. The technology transfers were coming somewhat slowly, but, Humans were already making giant leaps and their first faster than light spaceship was already under construction. Humans also reversed engineered some captured yeerk technology, circumventing the Andalites refusal to trade weapons tech.
The Andilites were somewhat wary of the Humans, while most Andalite civilians loved that Humans and Andalite cooperate well together and wanted good relations, Andalite command was less warm to the upstart and primitive race of humans. Andalites viewed human technology to be laughable, with every piece of human tech shocking Andalites with how old school it is, how dangerous it is, or how Humans even managed to get that far yet. Andalites high command viewed Humans as unpredictable, self-serving, primitive, and very weak looking creatures. Humans only had 2 legs, and 2 eyes, and looked as if they could barely stand up, lacking any tail! Humans were helplessly weak and had no real advantage to their bodies, the only reason yereks even wanted Humans was that they were too weak to resist, had fairly good senses and hands to handles technology, and had a supermassive 6 billion hosts bodies available. The one thing Andalite command hated the most about Humans, however, was that they could be competition.
Humans, as stated before, are in a laughably primitive state compared to Andalites or any other spare fairing civilization, such as the Skirt-Naa or the Leer. Most Andalites would be surprised to learn that a Human even knew about black holes. Most Andalite would be surprised that Humans invented books before the computer, as if the idea of powerless instantly accessible data was simple to think of. Most Andalites would be surprised to learn that Humans went from their first flight, to their moon, in just 60 years, 3 times faster than the Andalites. And most Andalites would be a bit nervous, more so than surprised, to find out that Humans went from having a man walk on their moon to discovering and inventing a Zero-space faster than light communication device in 50 years, right around the middle of the invasion of Earth by the yeerks.
The Human race works well with Andalites, both feeling a kindred with one another easily. Even before the invasion of Earth, a pair of teenage Humans would frequently surprise the to-be War price Elfangor when he was a cadet. Elfangor would be constantly surprised at how the soft, weak, and unsteady looking human body could take an amazing amount of punishment and still recover. and could be surprisingly strong and capable with their powerful and well-adapted arms and hands. Even the Humans unstable-looking 2 legs could be rather effective in giving the Human mobility in terms of running, jumping, and dodging. The young Elfangor found that both of his Human charges, kidnapped from their home planet, were rather determined. In fact, both of them had a key part to play in setting the stage for the eventual invasion of Earth. One for good, and one for evil. Truth be told, chances are the yeerks would have come either way, but, even 2 Human teenagers can have a huge impact on the galaxy many years down the road.
Peace now reigned, but it was to be short-lived, the Kelbrid bordered Andalite space, and may have killed an Andalite prince and former Animorph. Prince Aximilli, Elfangors younger brother, had survived the war on earth as a cadet and sole Andalite on the Animorphs team, and sole Andalite on earth, in general, most of the time. As a new prince and war hero, "Ax" was given the task of hunting down a rouge Yeerk force in a powerful "blade-ship" class cruiser. Ax's Andalites cruiser broke a treaty to stay out of each others space that was brokered with the Kelbrid, and after entering Kelbrid space Ax's cruiser was inspecting a craft it found via boarding party when the ship opened fire on Ax's vessel. Ax's ship had no choice but to run, and was subject to further attack, with only 1 survivor saved to tell the tale of Ax's capture on the strange ship they encountered during the search for the Blade ship.
The Andalite could not risk a war by entering Keldbrid space, even though they knew their hero was likely captured on a potentially Kelbrid ship. With 1 primary Animorph in addition to all the handicapped child auxiliary Animorphs killed, due to various suicide attacks at the end of the Yeerk war, 3 out of the 4 remaining Animorphs go on a mission to save their friend Ax, and all of them, the 3 rescuers and Ax, are killed in a suicide attack by the would-be rescuers, after learning their friend Ax was twisted into an abomination of a new sort, and that they were outclassed and under-prepared. The last known transmission from the Animorphs leader on the rescue mission was, "Ram the blade ship." There is only one confirmed Animorph left alive from the over 20 prime and auxiliary Animorphs during the war with the Yeerks, the intuitive tree hugger, Cassie. All known Animorph deaths have occurred due to suicide attacks, with the exception of one, and the possible exception of a second, (depending on if a suicide wish was granted to ease an evil traitor Animorphs pain of being stuck in rat morph to his arch-rival Animorphs who hovered on the edge of good and going too far down the path of becoming a monster herself. Nobody knows if she granted his death wish.)
With all known Animorphs dead, save for 1, and the Andalite war prince Ax believed dead, tensions rise in the command rooms for both Andalites and Humans, especially for the Andalites, who territorial space bordered the Kelbrid. The mission to rescue Aximilli lost Humanity its best heroes, and the Andalites lost their greatest war hero for good this time, the little brother of war-prince Elfangor was dead, as was almost the entire Animorphs team. Even Arborn, a fellow cadet and friend of Elfangor who was trapped in Taxxon morph, was dead, shot by a poacher on earth, after the war with the Yeerks ended. All the heroes who beat back the Yeerk invastion of the galaxy, with the exception of the tree hugger Cassie, were now dead, and not even the powerful time warping Ellimist would be able to bring them back this time, not being allowed in his comic game of chess to do them any other favors. The Andalites now had to worry about the fallout of the incursions into Kelbrid space, and both races would have to explain their Heros mysterious disappearances to its people using lies and tall tales.
As the Andalites desperately tried to predict what the Keldbrid race would do next, Humans continued to advance into making the transition to a galactic civilization. The moon was colonized with bases, thousands of humans now lived there in science and military outposts. Humanity continued to advance, the first "Zero Space" was launched, a second and third launched a few months later. With new each ship made, Humans modified, optimized, and resigned them to be better, faster, and more spaceworthy. Weapons on human spacecraft were still unheard of, but Human leadership was planning on adding those soon, the Human-modified dracon beams taken from the defeated yeerks being renamed "phasers" and given better damage and longer burst rates thanks to Human ingenuity. As the Andalites became to scan their borders fervently, Humans began to learn the art of weaponizing their space-ships with laser weaponry and began exploring captured shield tech and learning how it worked.
Years past, Andalite and Humans are rarely found in each other territory anymore. The Andalites have become recluse, nobody knows why, but they claim its to protect their species identity in these news times of species to species contact. The Humans and Andalites were working together on various business and governmental endeavors when suddenly, the Andalite high command issued orders to cease most contact with Humans, citing cultural identity concerns and the need to slow down and take more time to build trust. Humans were confused, the Andalite military folks could be a bit arrogant, but, Andalites and Humans got on pretty well, and Humans did not understand the sudden pullback in Andalite policy. Secretly, despite all the talk about "trust", Humans began to spy. They wanted to know what exactly was going on with the Andalites, and it did not help for Human leadership to secretly know that Andalite high command was planning on glassing planet Earth in a scorched earth policy during the war to stop the yeerks, and only reluctantly change gears after the Animorphs handed them a whole Yeerk fleet and the top general of the Yeerks.
The Andalites grew more distant, and Humanity watched from afar, using their secret Z-space telescopes to spy on Andalites planets and military movements. The Andalites were not an expansive race, having little desire to conquer new land, they only had 3 planets under their control. 20 years after the war with the yeerks, Humans were in the middle of terraforming Mars, and the moon was a full-fledged base of Humanity, with over 100,000 souls living there in domes and enclosed buildings. Humans had no real military space force, but the moon did contain powerful plasma turrets on its surface, with enough fire-power in its somewhat primitive model to surprise the Andalites, had they bothered to keep tabs anymore. The Andalites knew about the plasma turrets of course, but they did not care too much to check them out, and assumed humans had no real ability other than fighting wars limited to their own planet, and only shadow-based wars at that, believing humans to be unable to stand up to an advanced force of any kind with real numbers supporting them. The Andalites were occupied with something... Else... And Human leadership wanted to know what.
Andalite fleet movement had been detected by Human Z-space spy telescopes, lots of it, and Human leadership knew what it must be... War. They were not sure who the Andalites were gearing up to fight, but, Human leadership suspected it was the Kelbrid, knowing of the secret missions Andalites had taking place in their territory. The Kelbrid were considered to be advanced, powerful, and savage, but were known to keep their agreements, they would likely be very angry about their borders being intruded by Andalites after the agreement they made to stay out of each other's way. The Human leadership know what the signs pointed to, Humans had spent its whole existence fighting and killing, and it knew a fight brewing when it saw one. Humans made upgrades to their z-space spy scopes to take a better look at Andalite territory, what they found, was scary, if not surprising. The Andalites were indeed at war, and losing, badly.
The Andalites were in a panic, one of their worlds was burning, millions of Andalites dead, and the whole system it resided in was lost. The Andalites lost nearly half their fleet in trying to save their third planet and newest acquisition. After downsizing their military only 20 years ago, the newest generation of Andalites was tapped for war and hundreds of new ships were built at a frantic pace. The Andalite cadets knew what was expected of them.
Humans watched the development with great interest, they saw the third planet of the Andalites, Teeassic, burn. None seemed to be left alive, and the fleet around its orbit was devested. Humans watched as the Andalites pulled back to their remaining 2 planets, and build new more defense platforms to ring them. The Kelbrid were clearly a powerful foe, their ships massive in size, though old, and having massive firepower and defense shielding on their ships. Even the mighty Andalites dome ships, with shedder lasers that could punch a hole in a moon, were hard-pressed to stop even 1 Kelbrid battlecruiser. Humans watched as the Kelbrid matched the Andalites with 1 capital ship for every 3 of the Andalites own. The Andalites, while powerful, had clearly met their match, the Kelbrid was stronger than the yeerks and could push the Andalites back with their fierceness. Andalites, however, are brave to the point of ridiculousness, much like Humans, and the Andalites did not hesitate to self-sacrifice to attempt to win the war. Out of honor for their people, the Andalites forces again and again committed themselves to suicide attacks, fights that led to the self-destruction of the vessel they resided on, and just generally INSANE acts of heroism to try to stop the Kelbrid. But it was not enough, and the Andalites found themselves pushed out of open space and huddled around their 2 remaining planets.
All this time, the Andalites pretended nothing was wrong to the Humans. Civilian contact was cut off years ago, and Andalite military command, that acted as the species overall government more often than not, would send less frequent ambassadors, who nonetheless insisted everything was "fine" and the Andalite just wanted to take things slowly with Humans. For a time, Human leadership, consisting of the semi-centralized new earth government, took them at face value but grew less and less accepting of the excuses over time. The Humans did not want to admit to spying, but, it was a non-invasive long-range visual observation method, using holes in space-time, so they did not feel too ashamed of themselves for admitting it. Besides, the Andalites were losing and clearly needed help, badly. After witnessing a failed but close contested attack on the Andalites second planet, Luaminoa, Humans knew the Andalites were risking destruction and felt compelled to do something and say something.
Planet: Earth Year: 2022 Ambassador to the Andalites office, Washington D.C.
An old, haggard-looking Andalite of 160 years walks through the tall and wide door to the Ambassador's office, finding their species could not properly sit down like humans, a comfortable carpet would make due instead of a chair for the Andalite ambassador. The Andalite faces a middle-aged human of 40 years old, the blue-furred Andalite looks at the Human man standing before him, a man with bright blue clears eyes and a smile but sad smile on his face.
"Hello ambassador Theor-Getil-Illii", says the Human, using the Andalites full name rather then the shortened version. The Human did not shake the Andalites hand, knowing they are more fragile appendages than the ones Humans have. , said the Andalite telepathically, with a modest bow of its stalk-eyed head and human-like torso. , asked the Andalite. The small smiled faded off the Human ambassador's face, and in its wake was just sadness. "Theor", using the Andalites shorten named, "What is happening to your people?" The Andalite paused for a moment, seemed slightly taken aback, and responded. "Yes you do", the Human ambassador responded. "Your people are at war, and you are losing". The Andalites 4 eyes, trained on the Human, got big and his body tensed. The Human, not waiting for a response, continued. "We know you are down to 2 of your planets and are in a defensive position around their orbits, and we know about the Kelbrid and what is going on." The Andalite looked at ambassador Paul, and after a moment, asked,
the Andalite asked incredulously. "Well..." said the Human. "They really are more like micro cameras that look through micro holes in Z-space.", the Human explained. "Using just a tiny amount of energy, we can create a high-speed tunnel through Z-space, with nothing in the tunnel but a simple stream of quarks. The force of those quark streams keeps a small rift open that we peak inside of using a tiny camera that picks up on photons that enter the Z-space hole created as the quarks squeeze out of it.", the Human lectured. "This allows us to send tiny mass through Z-space at extremely high speeds, allowing for near-instant observation at the end of the tunnel created by the mass exiting Z-space at the target observation area." Shocked, Theor-Getil-Illii simply started at the Human, for a long time. The Human waited, and after a time, the Andalite seemed to find his thought-speak voice. , the Andalite babbled. , said the Andalite, trying to sound calm.
The old Andalite ambassador read Aximillis report, but could hardly believe it, let alone allow its impact to truly wash over him. However, the truth of Human now started to dawn him, and his body grew cold as his smart mind did the calculations and he thought to himself. The Andalite looked again at the Human, , the Andalite said slowly and half-mindedly> The Human nooded, understanding how the Andalite must feel, "Yes, we know we are the type to advance quickly compared to the most races we have learned of, it's just in our nature.", the Human said slightly sadly, "We just hope for the best", Paul said. Looking at the quite Andalite, Paul said, "Now, have you considered asking us for help? We would be willing to aid you, freely." Theor took a moment to think about that statement, before responding, Theor-Getil-Illii replied, borrowing the Human phrase to express a problem.
, Theor asked while taking a deep breath. "Certainly", said Paul. Theor started. Theor continued. Theor finished off. Theor said in thought-speak. Theor bristled. , ended the Andalite firmly. The Human ambassador looked on, knowing this would be a tough job, but one he would have to do.
"What if we offered you a million soldiers right now?" Paul asked. "Well trained, and we could even provide weaponry and supplies for them." Paul looked at the old Andalite. "We could even give you 3 million soldiers, armed and with some armored support, within 3 months time," Paul said. "China has already agreed to give a million soldiers today on the spot, and the United States and its alliances can provide 2 million after we formalize things a bit," Paul explained. "You could station them on Luaminoa, to use in defense in case of a troop based invasion.", Paul finished. The old Andalite stared, thought briefly, and said, Ambassador Paul nodded, but countered, "But you could still use the help when they try to take the planet as their own by troop invasion.", he said plainly. The Andalite ambassador countered, "Your people would all die." Ambassador Paul looked Theor in his 2 main eyes on his head, and said, "Yes, we know, but we are willing to do it to help you anyway. Out of friendship between the kin we know we have between our races.
The Andalite ambassador stood there that night, attempting to fall asleep in the middle of a moon-lit grass field, isolated and protected by security agents from the worlds cooperative governments for official Andalite guests to sleep in. No deal with struck today, just talk, the Andalite asked for an early recess to think and contact Andalite command. Theor-Getil-Illii would have preferred a tree to sleep by, in the half-asleep trance manner his forest and plains based species were accustomed to. The open field would have to do, however, not that his mind was letting him sleep. <3 million soldiers, in less than 3 months time?", he wondered to himself. The entire Andalite military force consisted of about 18 million Andalites, and that is even after the addition of female soldiers and higher than normal recruiting. A huge portion of the Andalite population was involved in the military in some way. It was like that in the time of the Yeerks, but now even more so, as the Kelbrid was a terrible enemy, and were using the entrance of 2 ships of Andalite belonging as a reason to continue to ignore any peace treaty and keep on the attack. Andalites understood their anger but believed this war to be a vast overreaction on the part of the Kelbrid.
3 million soldiers, the Andalite ambassador thought to himself, as he drifted off to sleep. It would be enough to nearly double the ground forces on their second world. It was a tempting offer, if the reports of humans being good ground-based soldiers were true. Allegedly Humans were tenacious ground-based combatants, who would not give up a fight easily and would use strategy and tactics as well as a wide variety of primitive but effective weaponry. Theor did the math, <3 million soldiers, out of over 6 billion people. That leaves them with 5 billion 997 million left, bare minimum.> Theor let the shock of that information wash over him. 3 million soldiers is a lot to Andalites sensibilities, and since yeerks were dependent on host bodies to do anything, it was a lot to the yeerks also. But to Humans, 3 million soldiers was a drop in the bucket, as Humans say it. It barely took a scratch out of their numbers. , the old Andalite thought to himself as he fell asleep. Humans had a vast population, and could make for very effective military use, should they be able to use weapons and have good mobility and senses. And they were primitive, vastly outmatched by all the other races in terms of technology, and bodies that could little to no damage to most creatures as well. And yet, somehow, Human minors, with the ability to morph from the Andalite Elfangor, were able to adapt and engineer the defeat of the Yeerks through guerrilla warfare. Theor-Getil-Illii slept while still pondering what to do about the Humans offer of soldiers and aid...
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My weekend with Titanium Blockchain Infrastructure Services, TBIS

This is my first ever blog post so please excuse me if I don’t adequately meet up to your writing expectations or answer all of your questions. Just a warning I tend to be wordy.
In the Telegram world, my name is “Titanium Big Fish” and I hold a 6-figure amount of Titanium’s utility token, TBAR. As many of you know, Titanium Blockchain Infrastructure was hacked February 21, 2018. Prior to the hack, I had always been active on the telegram channel and enjoyed talking of our future riches to others as I found myself loving the banter and comradery. Moon landings and Lambo’s were often the fun conversation. Unfortunately, this hack happened immediately after I sold my business and a week after my first child was born. I went from someone mentally retired on Titanium and crypto to someone unemployed with a newborn, having to now bust out my 2011 resume.
By February 21st, I was known to the top level in the company as a 6-figure token holder and I was still actively accumulating, so when I noticed A LOT of BAR being dumped on IDEX, I sent a telegram to Richard the COO questioning the ‘sale’ of so many tokens. Much to my surprise, and until today, I have kept this to myself, Richard asked me for my email and to sign an NDA and I was to call into a group chat. Much of what I write here might “bend” this NDA.
Besides myself on the call there were a few top-level managers. I was informed that there was a hack. Michael, the CEO sounded extremely upset. I could hear despondence and stress in his voice. Before they decided to go with their plan A, they wanted a token holders’ thoughts. Someone who might have some other insight into a different idea and hear how the community might react. I came up with an idea that was not feasible at the time which was to fork into the ‘ingots’ but Richard said the blockchain would not be ready for a few months and not a solution to stop the hacker from profiting. They then discussed an actual fork, that Richard and James could start working on ASAP. Everyone agreed that the fork was the best idea to prevent the hacker from profiting and TBAR was created at this point. Apparently, the team had previously contacted the exchanges, because our call ended when the IDEX owner called for Michael and Michael had to get off the phone with us to take that call.
There were 4 takeaways from this phone conversation that I had. One: I strongly suggested NOT to reveal this hack to the community and to make up ANY excuse but ‘hack’ to the token holders. I knew the mention of that word, would cause the BAR price to plummet and as a large holder I wanted to avoid that. Michael said, that we had to take the high road, and be honest and transparent. I really felt that was a strong statement for him to have made and it was something that I am certain that I would not have been able to do in that moment had I been the CEO. Two: I immediately noticed there was one top level manager NOT on the phone call, the CTO. I had been following Titanium and knew all the management and expected the CTO to be on this call. Literally that week I had run background checks on everyone so when someone was not there, I took notice, especially since his background check had some minor criminal issues. Three: when I asked whom I thought could possibly do something like this, it was evidently clear to me that the others on the call had a definite idea who the hacker was and it seemed Michael even wanted to blurt it out, saying something about not knowing who your true friends are. Four: I found myself somewhat on the ‘inside’ of the company.
The next few weeks were basically a nightmare. I had added to my holdings all month leading into the hack and even had a 5-figure order on the books that the hacker grabbed up. To say I was fully invested is an understatement. I became the voice of reason to many on the telegram channel, because I really believe in the project, and knew they would pull through and also suspected they knew whom the hacker was and his being caught was inevitable. Also, hearing Michael and Richards voices on the call to discuss options, gave me confidence that they had nothing to do with this. I also felt it best to be reasonable about my holding and think everything through logically and clearly before taking a negative stance on this. My logic and reasoning led me to fully believe in the team after seeing how hard they were working on resolving this. I always felt, if it was not for Hitbtc, this would have been a minor issue that would have been incredibly resolved quickly, brilliantly and with almost no loss of BAR. Over time, I started to grow closer to Richard and others on the team in my private discussions about the hack and my own Sherlock Holmes investigations. Unfortunately, I am still under my NDA and even now can not reveal things that I know because mostly they are circumstantial or might hinder the investigation. My NDA also prevented me from revealing other things that I had known in the past. For example, when a youtube interview was rescheduled, people blamed Michael for this. He seemed to be an easy fall guy, whom everyone felt just didn’t show up. However, I had known all along that it was cancelled by the interviewer and Michael was actually ready for the interview. One of the team members took the fall blaming themselves for this miscommunication. People questioned this when it was revealed, but I saw it as a team that never places blame on others and never speaks negatively about anyone, nor do they try to counter FUD even when they can and should. To me that is the sign of a company specifically thinking long term. I still have not seen a team member bad mouth anyone or any company (even HBTC).
On a whim, I reached out to Richard and said that I wanted to meet him, to see the office and meet Michael. I was concerned about my purchase, of course, and felt as a token holder I needed to see what was going on. There was a blockchain event coming up in LA and I was told that weekend would work as Martha, the CCO, would also be there.
For this trip, I rented my own car, paid for my own airfare and rented my own hotel room. Titanium did not pay for me to come out to LA and they did not suggest that I come. Titanium is not paying me to write this nor are they demanding I say or not say anything.
I never intended to write anything about my trip and my trip was not intended to answer Q and A for myself, nor did I take notes until the last day. My purpose of the trip was not to learn roadmap details nor product details, so I apologize to those that think I will fill you all in on the goodies. I was told many goodies, but I took them in stride as a big whole positive picture. I went to see if this was a long-term hold, if I should actually buy more, and to meet the humans behind Titanium, to get a feel for them specifically.
I have been careful in what I have written as to not excite people too much with mentioning things not fully completed nor have I mentioned things told to me that might violate others NDA and I do not go into detail at all on any road map dates nor many specific products really. For example, we discussed the Element wallet in detail, but I won’t mention it in this blog at all, nor will I mention many of the products being worked on. All I will say is that there are a lot of things going on.
It took me 2 weeks to get this blog out, and as we know in crypto 2 weeks is a lifetime, so many of the issues discussed below have been resolved, as well as some of the questions at the end, have already been answered.
My initial meeting with Richard and Martha was brief. It was a cordial meeting- the conversation focused on HITBTC, the big hack, the twitter hack, as well as the fud group. I initially asked what the plan was for HITBTC. Richard had told me he was waiting on their contact there to do what is asked of them, and though they seem to want to help, and they have agreed to help, they always seemed to stop short of helping. I asked if HITBTC wanted money to resolve this, he said yes, and he was willing to pay. Plan B, Richard said, will take place very soon. Although It is not an ideal solution, Richard would have to have each of the 1500+ wallet holders left on HITBTC send in proof that they have BAR on HITBTC, prove when that purchase was made, and individually, each wallet will be sent TBAR if they qualified. It would be a slow and tedious endeavor, that would use up a lot of manpower, but it would get done.
The conversation then turned to the hacker. I can’t speak to most of this as it is under investigation and I don’t know the full details, neither did Richard nor Martha. We all have our suspicions, and everything is unfortunately circumstantial at this point, so we just had an in-depth conversation on the circumstantial evidence. I can’t really discuss some of this information however, it is my opinion that this hack was a hack of vengeance, and not really for profit for they would have waited for a much better time to hack and BAR was really under the radar at this point with very low volume. This person does not want Titanium to succeed and more so, has a personal vendetta against Michael. The amount of people on this list is very, very small and it seems apparent that this is what the FUD group was set up for. Interestingly, this same person that I suspect is often in the FUD group. I suspect the person that publicly stated they did not want a fork and also publicly insinuated we should have paid the hacker, is to blame. You can all decide on that one… Interestingly, when I asked the telegram group to send over some Q and A, only 1 person asked about the hack. It seems that people are starting to move on from it.
The conversation then turned to the twitter hack and the FUD group (note: this group is currently shut down as of the writing of this blog). Much to my surprise these two things did not seem to bother Richard nor Martha very much at all as they were already past this and implemented new company protocols and procedures. They felt that they have done nothing wrong and were not concerned as the price of the token was moving downward with the market and was now currently sitting near or above ICO Ethereum price (actually as I finish this, it is double the ICO ETH price). It seems Richard was focused more on moving forward, hiring and getting the product created and out. Laser focused actually! We all suspected the twitter hacker and this FUD group are related. I suspect the same people. I learned, there is only 1 person that no longer works with the team, that would have access to the ‘released’ database (that was threatened to be released), and that person is active in that FUD group. That person still had access to the websites and I learned, apparently had shut them down a few times over the weeks. Richard said they are not even investigating the twitter takeover as it would not lead to much and they needed to focus on putting resources where they are better served. There were a lot of conversations back and forth between the founder of the FUD group and Richard. The founder of that group, was asking a large sum of ETH to do an AMA right after the hack. She was pretty upset that she was being ignored, to me it just made sense that during this moment of crisis, she obviously would not be priority #1, nor would a discord AMA be worth the price of many dozens of ETH. It is now old news, so lets move on.
Prior to my arrival in LA, I received a message from someone on Telegram who had “secret information” and correspondence from Michael regarding moving the office to Europe. This individual had once worked for the team and worked on setting up a possible international office and wanted me to know this information. I thought that would be a great idea, to get away from the regulations of the USA. Initially the person seemed to be telling me this as if it was secret FUD that he had, but when questioning him more, he said this was discussed months earlier and definitely not an escape plan, but more so to expand our offices internationally. I asked Richard his thoughts on moving the company, and he said that there are definitely no plans on doing so, however they do plan on running the DEX exchange in a favorable European country. Malta (where Binance recently opened office), Switzerland and Belarus had all come up, but no decisions were being made as to where. They went as far as looking into the intricacies of opening bank accounts and offices if necessary in these European locations, but it has not moved forward at this moment. More details might be released soon, and if so, it is not FUD, but a well thought out plan by Titanium. They truly thought everything through on this.
After about 90 minutes, Richard and Martha were heading to the office to meet Michael and interview 2 new engineers. My takeaway from the initial meeting was that I was surprised to hear Martha had recently just met Michael that morning, in person, for the first time. I had always thought they knew each other well, Michael always acted on the telegram that he was very personal with Martha, but I soon found out he is very warm and friendly to everyone. Richard and Martha had also just recently met face to face and only knew each other from Core through the ICO. My initial impression of meeting Richard is that he does not seem phased by anything. Every amount of FUD thrown his way he seemed to brush off with his answer of “we did nothing wrong, the product will speak for itself”. This seems to be his true belief. He is pretty certain of whom the hacker is, and does show some emotion when discussing that. Regarding the investigation, all Richard could say was that he was told something was definitely happening and news will be released soon. He is pretty calm and collected for someone basically running the helm here. Martha seemed to have her ducks in line and was very passionate about the project. She has the high energy and the knowledge it takes to fill her position with the company.
That night I met Richard and Martha in bar in LA. We had a few drinks and the topic of course turned to Titanium. Most of the discussion that we had made me super excited, as it detailed many of the future products. I recall texting “Dr Hodler” the telegram manager, that night and telling him I am loading up on more TBAR (since my trip my position has increased by 5 figures). Much of my memories of the conversation revolved around the master nodes. This is where my NDA really kicks in, so I can’t go into detail about them. I know they will be tiered and they will exist, though Richard mentioned unlike regular master nodes that we know of, because those pay a dividend and as a utility token we have to avoid paying a dividend. They will be blockchain rewards based. So token holders that have master nodes will earn block rewards. This was very well thought out. What I will say, and this was a running theme for the weekend, is that Richard is extremely brilliant. Not the nerdy brilliant, one-subject brilliant or boring brilliant but the type of brilliant that probably knows more about your profession, than you do. The Jeopardy champion brilliant. He thought of so many intricate details on every product and regarding these nodes, and this company, that his excitement, passion and intelligence made me excited. He did go into technical detail on these things, but I would never be able to explain it correctly. It was very detailed and thought out. Though after this evenings conversation, I do see why Michael mentioned Elon Musk once in a telegram chat.
What I would later find out about Richard was that at age 12 he was building and taking apart computers, and probably charging more to tutor people in computers, than a doctor was charging. He is someone that can lead Titanium to the top, someone that is motivated to, desires to, has the financial ability to, financial incentive to, and someone that will certainly be a huge success story in anything he wants. I am extremely confident in him and Titanium. Everyone wants to hear Michael speak, but Richard in my opinion is really the man behind the tech here. Unfortunately, like many tech guys (or geeks, though he does not come across as that), he is more comfortable behind the scenes instead of in front of a camera and never seemed to bite on my idea of getting him to do weekly video updates.
The next day we met at the Blockchain conference. It was not a great conference, but I did end up meeting 3 guys from the LA office, the amigos as Richard would say. They seemed excited to be working for Titanium. They were all intelligent and high energy, amicable and knowledgeable on this space. They were open to doing whatever it is that Richard asked of them. They were however not engineers and are part of the admin team working with Michael out of the LA office and they were there to help network with some of the youtube speakers at the conference and to get TBIS name out. Eventually one of the guys, Alex, got us in the backroom with the main speaker and a youtube personality that I follow. I was excited that this happened however that youtuber seemed only interested in how we could help him, and since his future ICO seemed like shit to me, that was not gonna happen. One takeaway was that I was a little dismayed at the teams elevator pitch. Hopefully in the future if they get to sit down with a big player off-the-cuff like that, it would be a bit more organized. I know it was the first time something like this might have happened, so next time hopefully they prepare better. Sales is extremely important in this space, and being able to spew EXACTLY what you need, what you do and how you do it, all within 30 seconds, has to be practiced. I can tell it was not. It did not matter because this guy was a dud, even though he was a main youtuber, it just goes to show these youtubers just are out only for themselves. Interestingly, in later conversation, I asked if Titanium ever paid “Supoman” and I was not surprised to hear that they 100 percent never had.
Our next stop after the conference was to head to the new office to meet Michael. One of my many reasons for investing into the ICO was because this was a USA based company, something located close enough that I could visit if I needed and because of Michael. When I first met Michael, I could see he was extremely well liked by his staff. A few of the guys that I met had come along to the office, and he hugged them when he saw them and seemed to be very warm, friendly and easy going. I have only heard great things about Michael from people that know him and worked with him and I remember our conversation on the phone after the hack how he seemed pleasant even in crisis. He was very professional as well as friendly, we shot the breeze a bit. It was mostly small talk. I had wanted to bombard him with a bunch of questions, but at the time, it didn’t seem appropriate as I was not one on one with him. Richard had already told me there was an investigation going on, but that it was secret and unless I could get alone with Michael I foresaw that was not going to be answered. He definitely seemed more the sweet, caring, puppy loving, family loving, honest and easy-going type, rather than anything else I could have imagined. I didn’t see any ‘snake oil salesman’, ‘used car salesman’ type at all. In fact, how this guy could have any enemies anywhere actually is surprising. I immediately liked him and could see why he would be good in sales. I assume anyone that does not like him, has clearly never met him.
When I thought about the office, I envisioned it where every techie developer on the team would be flown in worldwide, living out of a commune together and working 24/7 on Titanium. I envisioned team brainstorming meetings in a huge conference room with 100s of people running around. Well this I have come to understand is not what happens in the real ICO world. Titanium has a really nice office (the new carpet smell was prevalent) though it was not set up completely. It is perfect size for a start-up and I suspect mostly will be Michael’s home base /private office. Especially since Richard said he was not only not moving to LA, but that he was opening up his own office in Oregon (apparently Eugene is a tech town). Much to my dismay, the LA office is just not going to be an active hub of developers and engineers burning the midnight oil. What I have come to know is that the best developers and engineers, just don’t live in LA, nor do they want to, and I can definitely understand that. So, although Richard interviewed a few developers the day before, that might work in the office, he even said they could probably work from home (after implying he was hiring them). The LA office will house most of the admin people working for Michael and possibly the future sales staff, but really won’t be much of an active office with engineers working so anyone wanting that 24/7 camera set up in the LA office, I have given my two cents that it is stupid idea and a complete waste of time, money and energy as there will not be people burning that midnight oil like I suspected.
Previously, Richard had mentioned to me and to the telegram group that they have hired about 40 contractors and subcontracted engineers and Michael agreed with that statement when I brought it up. Richard has also told me they are hiring up to about 60 in total. I was pleasantly surprised to hear such a large number. He said they will be located worldwide and did mention what cities he was advertising in, but I have since forgotten. For the most part, people working for Titanium, will work remotely. Richard did state that anyone working for TBIS moving forward will be solely employed exclusively by TBIS and not allowed to work on any other project but ours. That was also refreshing.
Other things that were discussed with Michael was the FUD group. Again, I found it interesting that Michael did not seem to care too much about this group. I was under the impression he did not even know much about them at all. Seems the team doesn’t feel they have anything to worry about. The common theme is that they are a utility token, a product, sold to the public for future use in their ecosystem. When asked by me if they thought about getting a cease and desist on the group, they shrugged off the idea. Interestingly, everyone that bought into the ICO is now up money on TBAR compared to ETN, ETH and probably every other coin used to purchase BAR (unless fiat was used) Titanium is trading spectacularly compared to the rest of the market. One last thing that happened in the meeting with Michael was that when I revealed someone wanted me to reach out to the ex CTO for a conversation with him, Michaels demeanor completely changed. He went from a smiling happy guy shooting the breeze about the office furniture, to a complete 180 turn, becoming a stern father figure telling me exactly not to go play in shit. Basically, he gave me warning that it would be a bad idea and lets just leave it at that.
That night we ended up going back to Richards Airbnb. We all played a bit on the telegram and chatted about how inexpensive TBAR was. It was here that one of the main team members that I was with went on IDEX and purchased 12,000 TBAR after confirming the price was just too cheap at .25 cents. I also was told that recently another main team member bought a larger amount of TBAR in the 40 cent range. That was confidence building for me. Then it came up that immediately after the hack happened Richard and Martha confirmed that Richard went through ALL 22000+ wallets, one at a time, to take a snap shot of each wallets BAR holdings, to know who had what at the time. This took many hours. I was impressed. It seems that he has a lot of passion for this company and desire for it to succeed and, also that he doesn’t mind taking a back seat to all the work he does. I felt at that moment that I should write a little blog about my trip so that others can see how much work these guys are doing. Martha is also completely on the ball. She is overwhelmed I am sure with her duties, but seemed to handle everything perfectly in stride. She is also very intelligent and has her Master’s Degree in Communications from an amazing school. So even though she came from CORE, seems she is a great fit for the job.
Sunday afternoon we spent a little time going over some questions that were asked of me on the telegram chat. Much like some of my blog, some of the issues and questions have already been resolved. I apologize it took me so long to get this out.
I do want to make clear, the purpose of my trip was not for me to get answers to certain questions, it was for me to meet the team, see real substance, and get a better understanding of Titanium, it was not a Q and A session for me. It was about absorbing and getting a feel for TBIS. It was for myself and not really to make this blog. I am not technical, so I could not dig too deep into technical details, if you want those answers, hopefully the new Q and A weekly newsletter will answer those for you. I am under an NDA so some of the questions or concerns that I might have answers to, are tough for me to relay. But here are a few paragraphs of what came from these questions.
As far as partnerships are concerned, Titanium is obviously seeking out many strategic partnerships, but the product is high priority right now. Politically it is hard to discuss potential partnerships before they actually happen, so there was no set name of a partner that was mentioned. Nor did I ask. This seemed to be the theme with exchanges as well. There was a mention to me of a few exchanges that were seemingly definitely coming, but they cannot be revealed by me because there are NDA’s with those exchanges and of course things could change. I assure you from what was randomly said to me, possibly by accident, there is a real great one coming. But again, that can always change.
Product completion is imperative for acquiring customers as well, but I was happy to hear Richard and Michael are flying to Thailand to meet with a potential customer. That seems to be something Michael mentioned in a video and it was confirmed with me that it was indeed definitely happening.
As for seeing Michael more, Michael is now focused on the big picture of Titanium as a whole and will be fostering past and new relationships and partnerships for the most part. Due to this he won’t be available as much for video interviews going forward. Hopefully that changes, but the team feels that it is a positive for him to concentrate on the connections he has first and foremost.
Masternodes will be tiered and might be set up like block rewards as opposed to dividends. The larger the amount of tokens, the more possible rewards could be earned……. No word yet on how many tokens are needed for MN, rewards will be based off the new token and not TBAR. 10,000 was recently confirmed as one tier.
The way it is set up, the # of tokens will not be diminished in our lifetime, I am not sure exactly where this supply is coming from but when I asked where do the never ending supply of blockchain rewards come from, I was told, block rewards are similar to how bitcoin works and the economy is designed to last longer than any of our lifetimes.
Tbar will not be minable.
There are plans to un ban everyone that has been banned in telegram and start a new slate, once things clear up with all the TBAR HITBTC nonsense. It might be read only or they might open it back up with a short leash, but that is definitely on the agenda. I myself will probably unban everyone banned to read only shortly.
There are no patents at the moment- can’t really patent some of this kind of software but if they can they will try. They are looking into all IP patents however, and any patents they can get, they certainly will.
Technical whitepaper- a new version is coming with more tech specs and with a tech write up but not how things will work, that isn’t going to be released.
No public github but Richard will write a readme writeup for github explaining their open source stance. Some will be open source but it takes longer to open source. Companies often do this. Telegram for example has their app open sourced and some server tech but not all of it.
Titanium is concentrating on only hiring the best people around. When asked exactly how many are currently hired full time the answer was- there were already 35 direct hires and they have some contract employees working on a couple of the projects with them (I guess this is the 40 total mentioned before).
The website is being redeveloped because it was still in control of the ex CTO, who actually might have crashed it multiple times and took the ICO site offline a few times. Hmmmm, interesting.
Some of the new projects will have one-of-a-kind technology. Some were explained in depth and sound awesome…
As far as competitors go, Richard seemed happy that Google and others have been very clear on what they will be creating and he says it is not anything like what TBIS is doing.
Here are some other direct questions answered briefly. How can long term holders be rewarded? Staking of their tokens for services as well as Master Node options. Is there an ever a reduction of supply? Burning is being heavily considered as services are being paid for. Premium Michael promised after the hack? ICO supporters will have something. It is not solidified yet, the team can’t wait for ICO buyers to hear about it in the official announcement. When can we expect a working product? They currently have working versions of their product and it’s constantly evolving. Open Betas and Alphas are upcoming but I couldn’t get exact dates yet. Apparently, software design is often tricky but they have a good team and always hiring.
As far as some past FUD I would like to answer. Many brought up the home address as the address of record on TBIS website and incorporation. Those of you who question this have clearly never set up a small business in the USA. The process is simple. You can NOT lease an office without a corporate bank account, you can NOT get a corporate bank account without incorporating and you can NOT incorporate without an address. It is all one big catch 22. So, the VAST majority of business have 1 or 2 options. One is to use a home address or maybe a PO Box though I don’t think that is allowed in my state, the other option is to pay a ‘registered agent’ to collect your mail and use their random address. This is what a lot of companies do, but it costs money and there is no need for it. There is absolutely NO FUD nor concern that TBIS used a residential address as their initial address. All of my businesses have been incorporated at a residential address.
Also, I ran a background check on the 5 current and an ex main player of Titanium and 4 of the 5 background checks (the 4 current and new employee) were clean as can be, completely stellar, the 5th was not.
I also have a friend that works for the FBI. She is a psychological forensic profiler. Now I personally do not have an answer to whom was contacted regarding the hack, but my FBI friend said there is no chance, zero chance that the FBI will discuss any ongoing investigation with any Joe from the general public. She went on to say, unless you are an interviewed suspect or the victim, you would not be told about an ongoing investigation. She was very adamant about this. Even stating, “Do you think they would have fielded your call about Madoff?” However, she went on to say that the FBI would be the wrong people to contact regarding a crypto hack and that a private company that specializes in this stuff would be better, as FBI agents (in her words have no clue about this stuff) and make about 1/3 what a private company would pay their hackers.
So, this sums up my visit. I learned many things and I hope I could help you with some of your questions. I know I could not answer the whodunit question nor give a price prediction of the future of TBAR, nor resolve HITBTC for you, sorry. One of the most important things I realized is that this is truly a startup. If you are looking for a quick buck it is probably not happening. I think this frustrates many of you, causing unnecessary FUD. Much like my newborn stretching and kicking and making awkward faces, Titanium is in the newborn phase doing similar things. Finding their strong points, falling down a little, scratching themselves and even maybe a little crying / firing. Eventually, like my son, things will fall into place and what we will end up with is a very successful operation because all the groundwork is being laid right in front of our eyes. I was privileged to see the office blueprints, hear conversations about the hiring of team members, meet the CEO, hear about other offices being started, and the intricacies of products that are being built. I believe that once they overcome the hack and hitbtc and the fud, things will be smooth sailing when they can truly focus on all things positive. Those that are interrupting this process are like the big dumb schoolyard bully that doesn’t realize that instead of picking on the cool nerdy kid, they should join forces with this kid, help him off his feet as this will one day grow into something extremely successful. But like the big dumb bully, unfortunately you just can’t reason with stupid.
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Substratum leads Round 2 of Monthly Community Voting Round - AMA Transcript Inside!

Hey guys, If you haven’t noticed on Binance’s monthly community voting round – it has been a tight battle but Substratum has been taking the lead.
I wanted to explain why Substratum has seemingly come out of no-where but has garnered some attention. Substratum is creating a solution to a very big obstacle in the world web. The below has been taken from Justin Tabb aka the Founder of Substratum and summarises what the purpose of the network is.
I hope you guys can support their vision by voting for Substratum (SUB) on the https://www.binance.com/vote.html.
The Substratum Network will bring the decentralized web worldwide without the need of special software for the average internet user. We will be able to serve Substratum Requests directly to the default browser (Safari, Firefox, Chrome, Internet Explorer) without any special software installed on the average consuming users computer.
How Substratum Works
Ease of Use: currently nearly everything that has to do with crypto or the blockchain is very difficult to use and requires technical knowledge. Through our 10+ years of experience working with companies like Apple we understand the importance of a good user experience.
• The average internet user requires NO special software to use the Substratum Network. The default browser will service all requests for average users so they do not need to do ANYTHING different. Users who wish to service requests and receive SUB coins in return will have a point and click user interface that any user can setup. No technical knowledge required. SubstratumPay will be seamlessly integrated and geared towards high conversions of low technical expertise users. • Serving Up of Decentralized Content: Substratum provides a method for serving Decentralized Content (including Web Sites, Data, and Applications) through a Mac, Windows, and Linux application/service that is easy to install and run (requires no technical expertise) and serves up decentralized content using the toolkit that we have developed. This is a point and click process and requires zero technical knowledge. All the user has to do is install the application, click through a few settings and they are up and running and making Substratum Coin. Incentivizing Users to Serve the Content: in order to incentivize users to run the Substratum Network client on their machine we will be providing Substratum Coin to them for doing so. The coin is issued to the serving machine through a micro-transaction from the hosting site to the serving computer. By breaking fees down to a micro-transaction level this will greatly reduce the overall cost to companies and entities that want to host sites and applications on the internet solving yet another problem with the web as it stands today.
Privacy / Security / Encryption: by allowing millions of Substratum Network users to serve content the biggest concern becomes privacy and security. Substratum solves these issues through advanced cryptography algorithms rooted in Artificial Intelligence that ensures all data remains secure. Following the lead of BitCoin this is the strength of cryptocurrency and the crypto movement. Storage and Serving of Content: in order to serve millions of sites, databases, and applications the Substratum Network employs custom developed advanced compression algorithms and machine learning to geolocate the right Substratum Network machine to serve up the content to the appropriate user based on geolocation, this will ensure the fastest load time with the lowest amount of latency and strain on the Substratum Network and both the serving and receiving machine. DNS (Domain Name System): DNS or the Domain Name System is the system that currently tells your browser where to go when you type in a domain name. For instance when you go to Chrome and type in apple.com a DNS lookup is performed to check where to send that request, the DNS system comes back with an IP address and your request is routed there. In the first version of SubstratumDNS will be a complex, AI enabled DNS server that will receive DNS requests along with the geolocation of the requestor and find based off of that information the closest available SubstratumNode that is able to fulfill the request. Development Tools for the Decentralized Web: the Substratum Network will provide an API and SDK for developing tools on the Substratum Platform. This will bring in strong developer support and will accelerate the growth of the decentralized web on the Substratum Network. Net Neutrality: with the Substratum Network ALL web-sites and applications will have EQUAL ability to be broadcast in an equal and fair manner.
International Digital Barriers: currently countries like China have strict regulations on what their 1.379 billion citizens are able to interact with on the internet. Substratum will break down these barriers through a network of decentralized computers running the Substratum Network Software. Where other solutions that are currently used by residents in these countries require special software to be installed, like TOR, Substratum will take a reverse approach and require no special software for the average user.
High Hosting Costs: currently businesses must pay high hosting fees to get their web-sites on the internet. Amazon Web Services launched a 3.5BIL USD per year business by attempting to solve this problem. They allow you to pay for how many minutes you run a web / database server. Substratum completely solves this problem through the power of cryptocurrency by only charging for each request that is processed. You can check out the website here: • Substratum.net o And the whitepaper is available in multiple languages inclusive of Mandarin.
Furthermore, Substratum and the founders are very active in the slack – which they have recently hosted an AMA (ask me anything); I took the liberty of getting this information and if you are interested about the project to read more into it. Obviously they can’t reveal the inner workings of their product due to product sensitivity and being ahead of their competition but they are always up to date with the community through several videos on Youtube (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCxUJoTH0XLERKl55zGnFI6g) and announcements through their social media. I recommend you follow them.
Q: Any major talks with exchanges yet? A: We just announced that we are launching on our FIRST official exchange of COSS.IO on 9/30 trading against BTC and ETH. More to follow.
Q: Will I be able to run a supernode? A: From the beginning NO. Supernodes will only be for Substratum; however, they will run the SAME software that are used to run a NODE. In time we will develop a requirement list to run a supernode. If you qualify you can then run a SuperNode and receive a premium payout
Q: Is it possible to show a few examples of SUB payouts you get from running a node, and the tell us the ratios that affect the amount/way to calculate it somehow? (SUB owned, for how long you've been running a node etc..) Or is that still in testing? What's the difference in node rewards from someone who has 0 SUB's as opposed to someone who has X amount of SUB's? A: So the calculations for this are in process; however, you can watch our video "How Substrate Per Request Is Calculated" on our YouTube channel for an idea of what variables go into each calculation
Q: How do we prevent DDoS? A: The first step is not talking about how we prevent DDoS or any other hack. We call that security through obscurity. :slightly_smiling_face: Secondly, one of the primary ways to prevent a DDoS attack is decentralization. Well that's perfect. Lastly, there are other techniques, like black-holing and basically shutting a node down. The great news is that we will be decentralized so we are only talking about a node or specific IP Address that will not disrupt the network. :thumbsup:
Q: Say i got a website i want to publish on Substratum, how does this process go? A: Just a shout out if you ask for a lot of detail regarding technology stack and how exactly something will work we are most likely going to give you general answers. This is not to skirt the question. We want to be 10 steps ahead of anyone with nefarious plans before we get launched. You will be seeing more on this very soon. You should be seeing a video drop on this in the next week or two. The goal is to make this easy to use and powerful, plus empower others to use the tools. We're looking at things to different ways one is towards the average user who just want something sitting on their system and doesn't need any more details and the other is a super user who wants a lot of configuration options.
Q: When more people will use Substratum and more will run nodes, the value of SUB will increase. How will it be calculated how much SUB you get as a reward for running a node as value increases? Will it be calculated by Substratum itself or will it be changed manually every so often? A: We will be calculating against the live value of Substratum
Q: Is substratum detectable, for example if it’s used in a country like china and they are caught on these sites that are blocked by government… Can it be detected? A: The goal is to make it constantly moving. We do not want it to be. fast, easy, powerful, anonymous.
Q: Will there be Master Nodes? A: We will have some services that are available that will help provision nodes into the network. We are still story mapping this flow and architecture.
Q: Could we get more information about what you require to do to be a beta tester? A: To be a beta tester you only need to add yourself to the #beta-tester channel here in Slack. You will be notified when we are ready for you to download and install and the process and requirements to continue to run the software
Q: Will you keep us informed on a at least weekly base to tell/ show us the progress made? A: Yes! We will continue to drop at least 2 professionally made update videos each week (with Jason Burns the guy who does them) and we will be doing more and more candid videos
Q: Who is the winner of 10k subs and what idea did he give? And what about 2nd place and 3rd place. A: To be announced shortly. The Substrate is reserved for the payout
Q: Can we mine Sub without the software? A: I will personally be selling pick-axes on my personal website "pixaxesforsale.biz" for a low cost of $19.99
Q: Unless they disclose intelligent life in space, people are still going to be mad at the end of this. A lot more will be happy though A: Haven't found intelligent life in space. Some would question finding it on earth.
Q: From a legal stand point How are we protected if someone is running illegal content on our Node? A: Take a look at our video of "How Substratum Secures Your Site Content". You will never hold the entire piece of data except perhaps in memory if you are the one serving the request so you could never be culpable. Amazon isn't held responsible if I host illegal content now
Q: What about content control? child porno .. and so on ... ? Is there anything to control the content or? A: Excellent question. This was a big concern for us. We do not want Substratum to become the dark web. The goal is to allow the community to self-govern, vote up and down, call out illegal activity. The utilities will allow those with bad intentions to be called out. The more we grow the better we will be about wiping out things like child porn, and just as bad human trafficking.
Q: When will the raised money going to be donated? A: We have already donated $10K out and we have a pending wire for $40K going out Monday. We are working to find the BEST places with the IMMEDIATE needs.
Q: When will the livestream of the burn be? A: Burn #1 will be a livestream of my computer screen later tonight. I will announce on twitter at least an hour ahead of time and we will record it so people can see it later
Q: What will the final circulating supply be after all three token burns? A: We are still getting a FINAL number on this, we are still doing some FINAL Bonus sends but we will have the number VERY VERY soon and we will be posting it. We will be burning 60MIL tokens tonight so that should give you some kind of an idea.
Q: can you stop slack from freezing my firefox? A: Use the downloadable app, or get better internet, or get a new computer. Sounds like a dumpster fire.
Q: Everyone brings up the obvious choice of child porno that needs to be dealt with via content control. What about grayzones such as weed-selling sites? Its illegal in some countries, some not. How will Substratum deal with these grey-zones? A: Give me liberty or give me death.
Q: Could i have an invite to beta test channel on slack? A: Yes, just let a moderator know.
Q: could i get more information on what beta testers are required to do? I will happily be one if it helps the process and I actually manage to do it. A: Join the #beta-testers channel here
Q: when will we see a new homepage? A: This is being worked on now!
Q: is there a minimum amount of SUB needed to run a node? A: NO! 0 Substrate, don't worry, you will have some soon once you turn it on
Q: What about running an "micronode" on any phone (there is a big % using phones all the time), I mean an app installed on phone to run a node and to host only small content like a photos... Did you think about of this? A: https://youtu.be/h6tZ_ZFuFmY
Q: What if my website ethically and morally right and people downvote it out of jealousy will my website be removed if there are more number of downvotes and my content is clean? A: The process is NOT that simple, we will release more details later but this is being taken into consideration. I answered in a bit more detail above as well
Q: Does the Sub team ever sleep ? A: Only when driving
Q: Can I run a node on a VPS? A: I certainly won't be telling people how or where to run the node software. Do the best you can. I actually answered the VPS question above too. We will have a command line version if that is the question. That you can run on something like Ubuntu Server if you want
Q: Can the voting system for all illegal stuff on the internet also be used in a 'bad' way on the regular websites to for example gain commercial/business advantages? A: It should not, no one will have 'master control' All control, so the market decides always.
Q: Who will profit from cryptopay? How will this bring value to SUB tokens? A: Everyone will as we gain dominance. But also, Substratum the company will take a small percentage. This will enable us to continue building awesome apps. CryptoPay will be the cornerstone of many good things to come. Think retail, goods and services.
Q: I work at a games company with 200+ high powered pcs. If I install sub nodes on every single one of them at night, will IT be able to catch and fire me A: See your HR manual, or HR supervisor for those questions.
Q: How do websites and hosters remain protected from hacking, if sites are created with innate vulnerabilities does that expose other sites hosted by the same node? A: This is a great question. Hosting Nodes will have to vet out their security. Again, being decentralized goes a long way in providing security. So does encryption. We will help hosts be the best hosts possible.
Q: Please explain the earning in SUB by running a node? A: So the SUB comes FROM the HOST (who purchases the SUB) to the NODE for the cost of the transaction. https://youtu.be/LWZ1DIGGOoQ
Q: When will the tokens be sent for the 100 Sub giveaway A: Shortly
Q: How will Substratum market themselves towards countries that needs SUB the most but are hard to reach, such as North Korea, Africa, China? A: Think spider web. The more that join, and use, the less it can be controlled.
Q: How long will this bear market last for? A: Let me put the fortune teller hat on. Crypto is a young demographic currently. It will be bear'ish until we make the technology easier and they get older.
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XRP is risky and is being hyped! SEC needs to change crypto laws! Litecoin on the Bitcoin blockchain? Josh talks sidechains, the tech that can free all the coins! Intel - YouTube Lisk Berlin Meetup Livestream Nov 22, 2017 - Final Cut George Waller CEO & Co Founder BlockSafe Technologies Securing the Blockchain Ecosystem. Live Coding: Learning Rust from scratch Technology Evolves at Intel Living Entirely Off Of Crypto - Is It Possible? (Telugu/తెలుగు) What is Optane memory? Who can Use Optane Memory ?

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XRP is risky and is being hyped! SEC needs to change crypto laws!

Introducing Intel® Optane™ memory, a new revolutionary class of non-volatile memory that accelerates your system, unleashing amazing new experiences for the ... 0:01 Introduction 7:41 Marketing Community Update 16:46 Binance Announcement 19:06 Lisk Ecosystem Explained Simply 25:51 Lisk-JS 38:25 Lisky 48:25 Development Roadmap 1:05:00 Relaunch Announcement ... SanDisk 64GB memory card - https: ... #cryptocurrency #BAKKT #Bitcoin #altcoin #binance #kucoin #coinbase #ripple # cryptocurrencynews,#xrp #bnb #neo #bakkt #fidelitydigitalassets #bitcoinprice # ... Today we will explore the Rust programming language. I don't have any experience with Rust so we will start at the very beginning with learning how to do a Hello World. We will work on building a ... Layah Heilpern speaks to Dash Force's Joel Valenzuela who is currently living entirely off crypto. He tells us all the tricks and tips to make this possible. __ Thank You For Watching This Video ... Intel® Optane™ Memory – Changing the Face of Computing Intel Business - Duration: 1:32. Intel Business 74,947 views. 1:32. The Future of Autonomous Vehicles Nvidia CEO Full Interview ... Today Josh looks the technical side of sidechains and tries to explain how this technology is the future of blockchain and how we may be able to use any coin on any other blockchain, the benifits ... Easiest way to Buy Bitcoin in Europe: ... secondary exchanges like Binance, Coin Check, Mt. Gox and many others in the Cryptocurrency space. BlockSafe Technologies’ CryptoDefender™ is offering ... Founded in 1968 to build semiconductor memory products, Intel introduced the world's first microprocessor in 1971. This decade, our mission is to create and extend computing technology to connect ... Hi friends, intel released a new type of cache memory to boost any system performance. In this video i explain about intel optane memory, Price, and who can use this intel optane memory. what are ...

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