BITCOIN - Mercatus Center

Report on Filecoin And PoC Projects

Report on Filecoin And PoC Projects
Author: Gamals Ahmed, CoinEx Business Ambassador
ABSTRACT
A Blockchain is a continuously growing record, called blocks, which are linked and secured using cryptography such as hashing. Each block contains a hash pointer as a link to the previous block, a timestamp and transaction data. Filecoin is a decentralized storage network that turns cloud storage into an algorithmic market. The market runs on a blockchain with a native protocol token (also called Filecoin), which miners earn by providing storage to clients. The first section of report is demonstrate the filecoin which is a decentralized storage system used to encrypt files that we need to share it through blockchain platform. The second section is explain briefly blockchain Proof of Concept (POC) which is a process of locate whether a Blockchain project idea can be feasible in a real-world situation, need of proof of concept and blockchain proof of concept stages.
1.Introduction
Filecoin is a protocol token whose blockchain runs on a novel proof, called Proof-of-Space time, where blocks are created by miners that are storing data. Filecoin protocol provides a data storage and retrieval service via a network of independent storage providers that does not rely on a single coordinator, where: (1) clients pay to store and retrieve data, (2) Storage Miners earn tokens by offering storage (3) Retrieval Miners earn tokens by serving data.
Filecoin is a decentralized storage network that turns cloud storage into an algorithmic market. The market runs on a blockchain with a native protocol token (also called Filecoin”), which miners earn by providing storage to clients. Conversely, clients spend Filecoin hiring miners to store or distribute data. As with Bitcoin, Filecoin miners compete to mine blocks with sizable rewards[1].
Filecoin mining power is proportional to active storage, which directly provides a useful service to clients (unlike Bitcoin mining, whose usefulness is limited to maintaining blockchain consensus). This creates a powerful incentive for miners to amass as much storage as they can, and rent it out to clients. The protocol weaves these amassed resources into a self-healing storage network that anybody in the world can rely on. The network achieves robustness by replicating and dispersing content, while automatically detecting and repairing replica failures. Clients can select replication parameters to protect against different threat models. The protocol’s cloud storage network also provides security, as content is encrypted end-to-end at the client, while storage providers do not have access to decryption keys. Filecoin works as an incentive layer on top of IPFS [1], which can provide storage infrastructure for any data. It is especially useful for decentralizing data, building and running distributed applications, and implementing smart contracts [2].
Filecoin[2] based on IPFS[3] proposes a completely decentralized distributed storage network where customers and storage miners request services and submit orders to the storage and retrieval markets. And the miner provides a service to view matching quotes to initiate a transaction. The protocol guarantees the integrity of data storage by copying proofs and space-time certificates. The Filecoin protocol writes the order book, token transactions, and integrity challenge response records to the blockchain.
1.1 Blockchain
Blockchain is a characteristic data structure formed by combining data blocks in a chain order inchronological order[4], and cryptographically guarantees decentralized, non-tamperable, unforgeable distributed shared ledger system.
Figure 1 Blockchain Structure
1.2 Elementary Components in Filecoin
The Filecoin protocol builds upon four novel components :
  1. Decentralized Storage Network (DSN): We provide an abstraction for network of independent storage providers to offer storage and retrieval services.
  2. Novel Proofs-of-Storage: We present two novel Proofs-of-Storage,(1) Proof-of Replication allows storage providers to prove that data has been replicated to its own uniquely dedicated physical storage. Enforcing unique physical copies enables a verifier to check that a prover is not deduplicating multiple copies of the data into the same storage space, (2) Proof-of-Space time allows storage providers to prove they have stored some data throughout a specified amount of time.
  3. Verifiable Markets: We model storage requests and retrieval requests as orders in two decentralized verifiable markets operated by the Filecoin network. Verifiable markets ensure that payments are performed when a service has been correctly provided. We present the Storage Market and the Retrieval Market where miners and clients can respectively submit storage and retrieval orders.
  4. Useful Proof-of-Work: We show how to construct a useful Proof-of-Work based on Proof-of Space time that can be used in consensus protocols. Miners do not need to spend wasteful computation to mine blocks, but instead must store data in the network[2] [4].
1.3 Filecoin: Lifecycle of a File
In this section we mentioned the lifecycle for file in Filecoin, as follow:
  1. Put: Clients send information about the file, storage duration, and a small amount of Filecoin to the Storage Market as a bid. Simultaneously, Miners submit asks, competing to offer low cost storage. Deals are made in the Storage Market, on the blockchain.
  2. Send: The Client then sends the file to the Miner, and the Miner adds the file to a sector. The sectors are cryptographically sealed, with verification sent to the blockchain.
  3. Manage: Miners continuously prove they are storing all sectors they agreed to store. The client’s payment is released in installments. Additional currency is minted over time and awarded to Miners as a block reward, proportional to the storage they provide.
  4. Request: A Client requests a file with some payment in Filecoin to the Retrieval Market (off chain); the first Miner to send the file is paid. Eventually, the contract expires and the storage is once again free[5].
Figure 2 Filecoin Lifecycle of a File
1.4 Filecoin is Built with IPFS
The Interplanetary File System (IPFS) is a next-generation protocol to make the Web faster, safer, decentralized, and permanent. Since the initial IPFS release in January 2015, it has gained strong traction in a variety of industries and organizations. Today, IPFS is a foundational technology for many applications in the blockchain industry. Over 5 billion files have been added to IPFS, spanning scientific data and papers, genetic research, video distribution & streaming, 3D modeling, legal documents, entire blockchains and their transactions, video games, and more. IPFS and Filecoin are complementary protocols, and the adoption of the underlying IPFS protocol is a leading indicator of market demand for a faster, safer, decentralized storage service [6].
Some IPFS Users
Figure(3) IPFS users
1.5 IPFS Open Source Community
The IPFS Project is a large community of open source contributors driven to decentralize the web. The community is made up of thousands of developers and users who have been working together for several years, building valuable and widely used software tools. The same seasoned core developers of IPFS are also leading the design and development of Filecoin. The IPFS team has experience building ambitious sotware projects and coordinating thriving developer communities. A significant portion of the IPFS community plans to join the Filecoin network, building tools and applications on this new, exciting platform [ 7].
2. PoC PROJECTS:
2.1 What is PoC?
PoC is abbreviate of Project of Concept which is a process of determining whether a Block-chain project idea can be feasible in a real-world situation. This process is necessary to verify that the idea will function as envisioned. The best part about proof of concept blockchain meaning is that it will help you to get a clear idea of what you are doing before you even get started. Furthermore, the proof of concept in the blockchain niche isn’t for exploring the marketplace for ideas only. Moreover, you won’t determine the best way to start the production process. Instead, you’ll only work on your possible blockchain solution option and see whether it’s capable of being a reality or not. Developing a blockchain proof of concept would require an investment of time, money and resources. In reality, you’d need to get your hands on supporting technologies or even the physical components needed to get the perfect plan. Going through the process is necessary for enterprises to see whether their idea is visible before using all production level equipment for it. According to a recent Gartner survey, 66% of CIOs think that blockchain is here to disrupt the existing marketplaces. And many will spend more than $10 million on the experimentation of the technology. So, if you were confused with what is proof of concept blockchain, now you know just what it is [8]. PoC is used to demonstrate the feasibility and practical potential of any blockchain project in any field such as Energy, Communication, Services, Insurance and Healthcare. A PoC can either be a prototype without any supporting code or any MVP (Minimum Viable Product) with bare feature set. A PoC is a prototype that is used for internal organization who can have a better understanding of a particular project.
2.3 Why Companies Need a Proof of Concept?
Usually, the blockchain proof of concept is awfully popular among the startups in the market. However, proof of concept in blockchain can also be a great tool for the Enterprises as well. Mainly there are three points for needing it.
  • Test out the blockchain project before going for mass production.
  • Identify possible pain points that can make the project not useful.
  • Save an enormous amount of time and money.
Although anyone who comes up with a blockchain project idea will think that it will work, however, proof of concept in blockchain will test out your idea to ensure that you get the best version out of it, which will save up a lot of time and money in the process. Another major reason for you to use proof of concept for blockchain is to ensure that all the stakeholders love your idea and would be interested in investing in it. Whether you are just adding up a new type of feature in the existing blockchain solution or developing it from scratch blockchain proof of concept would let you take the fastest route possible. This relatively gives a different edge in the proof of concept blockchain meaning [9].
2.4 Proof of Concept Phases
Its explain as follows:
Figure (4) explains the steps of blockchain PoC
Step-1: Finding the Proper Blockchain Application Sectors That Adds Value
Let’s start with the first step of the theoretical build-up stage. Many of you don’t really know which application sectors are great for blockchain Proof of concept [10]. That’s why we are outlining some major application sector where you can use your solution. These are:
1.Finance
Let’s start with the financing sector. This sector is relatively popular among the blockchain community. Furthermore, there are many projects already that cover this sector and offer a lucrative solution for major issues. So, in that sense, this sector is quite competitive in case of blockchain PoC development. 2. Medical
The medical sector is another major blockchain application sector at present. There are count-less scenarios where blockchain can truly shine. Hospitals have to deal with a lot of falsifying reports and counterfeit drugs.
3. Asset Management
Maintaining asset in these times are relatively hard due to all the bad players in the market. Simple paper-based record keeping isn’t enough now. Moreover, due to political and other reasons, ownership management is at risk of becoming a corrupted sector.
4. Government
Many governmental institutions are falling behind in the race of digitization. Moreover, every citizen needs a better infrastructure which will give them the security they need. In reality, the government sector is unable to reserve the citizen rights properly.
5. Identity
Identity management is a big hassle when it comes to enterprises. Furthermore, many often impersonate other people’s identity and commit serious crimes. Even in trade financer, many companies have to deal with fake companies and fake documents.
6. IoT
Internet of things is a wonderful sector for proof of concept in blockchain development. Furthermore, this sector is responsible for linking all your smart applications together. Moreover, the device to device connection in a secured platform is necessary.
7. Payments
The payments sector is another awesome application point for your enterprise-grade solution. The blockchain system is more than capable of handling payments, and many of it also offer micro payments. Furthermore, it takes a really small amount of time to send money compared to the traditional banking system. Not to mention the reduction of fees in overseas payment.
8. Supply Chain
Big enterprise needs to have their eyes and ears in every step of the supply chain process. Furthermore, any minor errors could end up in a million dollars of loss. Obviously, you would not want that. Tracking where the raw materials are coming from and whether your products are truly authentic or not is one of the major pain points.
9. Insurance
The insurance industry is facing some serious problems regarding insurance claims and document authentication. Also, the enormous amount of paperwork that every single employee has to fill out is overly dreadful. Detecting fraud, managing all the documents in a secure environment is tough. So, if you introduce a blockchain framework that can solve all these issues would be a huge factor. However, the competition in this marketplace is a bit high; still, with proper blockchain proof of concept, it should be a great opportunity.
Step-2: Defining the Product
In the second stage of the theoretical build-up, you would need to think your blockchain Proof of concept just like any other product. Furthermore, you need to have a solid plan along with full support from all stakeholders. PoC Feature Requirements Define all the features that your enterprise blockchain solution needs. After deciding your blockchain application, you would probably have some idea on what features to add up.
Step-3: Investigating the Technology
After you’ve come up with the solid idea of what features to include and how to focus the road map, you would need to hand them off to the engineering team. Therefore, your team will then research the technology based on your requirements and come up with the best plat-form to develop it on.
  • Advice to make a successful Proof of Concept As we knew, a proof of concept is a project, and like any project it must be clearly defined. That means breaking down the process into these four steps in order to can manage it better.
  • Focus on a Specific Business Issue If you want to make the blockchain PoC framework a success, then you have to start with focusing your real-life problems. At the beginning of the theoretical build-up stage when you are looking for a popular sector of deployment, look for a specific issue. Furthermore, any problem that your idea can fix would be a big plus from the consumers’ end. Many blockchain proof of concept only focuses on the capabilities of the technology only. However, they just don’t resolve any new issues or even old issues.
  • Take Small Steps, Avoid Scope Creeps Another major thing that the enterprises face is the scope creeps. While choosing what features you might need for the blockchain proof of concept many go for too much from the start. However, making a flashier entrance in the market won’t mean 100% success. Further-more, get the ones that you can truly deliver, not the ones you aren’t capable of.
  • Connect All Ideas and Control Them You won’t be the only one coming up with all the ideas. As you already know you’d need to get yourself a good team that will back you up and helps you come up with a compact solution. However, not every single member of your team would agree with the same idea. Furthermore, they have different ideas and vision regarding the blockchain development too.
  • Construct a Thorough Plan Another hurdle in the way of proper proof of concept blockchain is the misinterpretation of the blockchain implementation challenges. Obviously, blockchain implementation isn’t an easy task. At the first stage, it might have many flaws that would end up in possible failure scenarios.
  • Test A Million Times After getting the design done, you’d need to go into the testing phase. However, the problem is many seem to enroll the MVP before properly testing it, which end up in failure. So, test out the MVP a lot of time before making it accessible to the end-users.
  • Collaborate With Other Parties Collaborating with other enterprises could help to take down the overall costing of the block-chain proof of concept. Furthermore, if you are a small to medium level enterprise than collaborating with other parties could help out with the production costing. It will solely depend on the feature or the type of blockchain PoC framework you want to work on.
  • The Right Amount of Staff The right amount of stuff is always necessary to pull off a blockchain proof of concept project. Furthermore, you would need to recruit staffs that have blockchain skills or have an intellectual concept of the technology. Get the necessary amount of stuff with blockchain skill set to perfect the Blockchain Proof of Concept..
3. Conclusion
This report explain a distributed storage scheme based on blockchain technology( Filecoin), and introduces the system design in detail in first part , we have studied about blockchain technology related for Filecoin(decentralized storage network), Filecoin, a highly-anticipated decentralized storage network (under development), announced that there will be more delays before its Mainnet can be officially launched. Created by Protocol Labs, Filecoin has been developed using the InterPlanetary File System (IPFS), an established peer to peer data storage network. The Filecoin software will allow users to trade storage space in an open and decentralized market place.In the second part we mentioned a proof of concept (PoC), The Blockchain Proof of Concept is a demonstration to verify that certain concepts or theories have the potential for real-world application. PoC represents the evidence demonstrating that a project or product is feasible and worthy enough to justify the expenses needed to support and develop it.
REFERENCES
[1] Juan Benet. IPFS — Content Addressed, Versioned, P2P File System. 2014.
[2] Protocol Labs. Filecoin: A Decentralized Storage Network. https://filecoin.io/ filecoin.pdf, 2017.
[3] Benet J. IPFS-content addressed, versioned, P2P file system[J]. arXiv preprint arXiv:1407.3561, 2014.
[4] Liu AD, Du XH, Wang N, Li SZ. Research Progress of Blockchain Technology and its Application in Information Security. Ruan Jian Xue Bao/Journal of Software,2018,6,14:1–24.
[5] Protocol Labs, Inc,[email protected] , Filecoin Primer July 25, 2017.
[6] Protocol Labs, Inc,[email protected] , Filecoin Primer July 25, 2017.
[7] Retrieved from IPFS internal monitoring July 6, 2017.
[8] https://www.projectmanager.com/blog/proof-of-concept-definition.
[9] https://www.blockchainappfactory.com/poc-blockchain-application
[10] https://101blockchains.com/blockchain-proof-of-concept/#prettyPhoto
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Last updated 2018-01-29
This post is a collaboration with the Bitcoin community to create a one-stop source for Lightning Network information.
There are still questions in the FAQ that are unanswered, if you know the answer and can provide a source please do so!

⚡What is the Lightning Network? ⚡

Explanations:

Image Explanations:

Specifications / White Papers

Videos

Lightning Network Experts on Reddit

  • starkbot - (Elizabeth Stark - Lightning Labs)
  • roasbeef - (Olaoluwa Osuntokun - Lightning Labs)
  • stile65 - (Alex Akselrod - Lightning Labs)
  • cfromknecht - (Conner Fromknecht - Lightning Labs)
  • RustyReddit - (Rusty Russell - Blockstream)
  • cdecker - (Christian Decker - Blockstream)
  • Dryja - (Tadge Dryja - Digital Currency Initiative)
  • josephpoon - (Joseph Poon)
  • fdrn - (Fabrice Drouin - ACINQ )
  • pmpadiou - (Pierre-Marie Padiou - ACINQ)

Lightning Network Experts on Twitter

  • @starkness - (Elizabeth Stark - Lightning Labs)
  • @roasbeef - (Olaoluwa Osuntokun - Lightning Labs)
  • @stile65 - (Alex Akselrod - Lightning Labs)
  • @bitconner - (Conner Fromknecht - Lightning Labs)
  • @johanth - (Johan Halseth - Lightning Labs)
  • @bvu - (Bryan Vu - Lightning Labs)
  • @rusty_twit - (Rusty Russell - Blockstream)
  • @snyke - (Christian Decker - Blockstream)
  • @JackMallers - (Jack Mallers - Zap)
  • @tdryja - (Tadge Dryja - Digital Currency Initiative)
  • @jcp - (Joseph Poon)
  • @alexbosworth - (Alex Bosworth - yalls.org)

Medium Posts

Learning Resources

Books

Desktop Interfaces

Web Interfaces

Tutorials and resources

Lightning on Testnet

Lightning Wallets

Place a testnet transaction

Altcoin Trading using Lightning

  • ZigZag - Disclaimer You must trust ZigZag to send to Target Address

Lightning on Mainnet

Warning - Testing should be done on Testnet

Atomic Swaps

Developer Documentation and Resources

Lightning implementations

  • LND - Lightning Network Daemon (Golang)
  • eclair - A Scala implementation of the Lightning Network (Scala)
  • c-lightning - A Lightning Network implementation in C
  • lit - Lightning Network node software (Golang)
  • lightning-onion - Onion Routed Micropayments for the Lightning Network (Golang)
  • lightning-integration - Lightning Integration Testing Framework
  • ptarmigan - C++ BOLT-Compliant Lightning Network Implementation [Incomplete]

Libraries

Lightning Network Visualizers/Explorers

Testnet

Mainnet

Payment Processors

  • BTCPay - Next stable version will include Lightning Network

Community

Slack

IRC

Slack Channel

Discord Channel

Miscellaneous

⚡ Lightning FAQs ⚡

If you can answer please PM me and include source if possible. Feel free to help keep these answers up to date and as brief but correct as possible
Is Lightning Bitcoin?
Yes. You pick a peer and after some setup, create a bitcoin transaction to fund the lightning channel; it’ll then take another transaction to close it and release your funds. You and your peer always hold a bitcoin transaction to get your funds whenever you want: just broadcast to the blockchain like normal. In other words, you and your peer create a shared account, and then use Lightning to securely negotiate who gets how much from that shared account, without waiting for the bitcoin blockchain.
Is the Lightning Network open source?
Yes, Lightning is open source. Anyone can review the code (in the same way as the bitcoin code)
Who owns and controls the Lightning Network?
Similar to the bitcoin network, no one will ever own or control the Lightning Network. The code is open source and free for anyone to download and review. Anyone can run a node and be part of the network.
I’ve heard that Lightning transactions are happening “off-chain”…Does that mean that my bitcoin will be removed from the blockchain?
No, your bitcoin will never leave the blockchain. Instead your bitcoin will be held in a multi-signature address as long as your channel stays open. When the channel is closed; the final transaction will be added to the blockchain. “Off-chain” is not a perfect term, but it is used due to the fact that the transfer of ownership is no longer reflected on the blockchain until the channel is closed.
Do I need a constant connection to run a lightning node?
Not necessarily,
Example: A and B have a channel. 1 BTC each. A sends B 0.5 BTC. B sends back 0.25 BTC. Balance should be A = 0.75, B = 1.25. If A gets disconnected, B can publish the first Tx where the balance was A = 0.5 and B = 1.5. If the node B does in fact attempt to cheat by publishing an old state (such as the A=0.5 and B=1.5 state), this cheat can then be detected on-chain and used to steal the cheaters funds, i.e., A can see the closing transaction, notice it's an old one and grab all funds in the channel (A=2, B=0). The time that A has in order to react to the cheating counterparty is given by the CheckLockTimeVerify (CLTV) in the cheating transaction, which is adjustable. So if A foresees that it'll be able to check in about once every 24 hours it'll require that the CLTV is at least that large, if it's once a week then that's fine too. You definitely do not need to be online and watching the chain 24/7, just make sure to check in once in a while before the CLTV expires. Alternatively you can outsource the watch duties, in order to keep the CLTV timeouts low. This can be achieved both with trusted third parties or untrusted ones (watchtowers). In the case of a unilateral close, e.g., you just go offline and never come back, the other endpoint will have to wait for that timeout to expire to get its funds back. So peers might not accept channels with extremely high CLTV timeouts. -- Source
What Are Lightning’s Advantages?
Tiny payments are possible: since fees are proportional to the payment amount, you can pay a fraction of a cent; accounting is even done in thousandths of a satoshi. Payments are settled instantly: the money is sent in the time it takes to cross the network to your destination and back, typically a fraction of a second.
Does Lightning require Segregated Witness?
Yes, but not in theory. You could make a poorer lightning network without it, which has higher risks when establishing channels (you might have to wait a month if things go wrong!), has limited channel lifetime, longer minimum payment expiry times on each hop, is less efficient and has less robust outsourcing. The entire spec as written today assumes segregated witness, as it solves all these problems.
Can I Send Funds From Lightning to a Normal Bitcoin Address?
No, for now. For the first version of the protocol, if you wanted to send a normal bitcoin transaction using your channel, you have to close it, send the funds, then reopen the channel (3 transactions). In future versions, you and your peer would agree to spend out of your lightning channel funds just like a normal bitcoin payment, allowing you to use your lightning wallet like a normal bitcoin wallet.
Can I Make Money Running a Lightning Node?
Not really. Anyone can set up a node, and so it’s a race to the bottom on fees. In practice, we may see the network use a nominal fee and not change very much, which only provides an incremental incentive to route on a node you’re going to use yourself, and not enough to run one merely for fees. Having clients use criteria other than fees (e.g. randomness, diversity) in route selection will also help this.
What is the release date for Lightning on Mainnet?
Lightning is already being tested on the Mainnet Twitter Link but as for a specific date, Jameson Lopp says it best
Would there be any KYC/AML issues with certain nodes?
Nope, because there is no custody ever involved. It's just like forwarding packets. -- Source
What is the delay time for the recipient of a transaction receiving confirmation?
Furthermore, the Lightning Network scales not with the transaction throughput of the underlying blockchain, but with modern data processing and latency limits - payments can be made nearly as quickly as packets can be sent. -- Source
How does the lightning network prevent centralization?
Bitcoin Stack Exchange Answer
What are Channel Factories and how do they work?
Bitcoin Stack Exchange Answer
How does the Lightning network work in simple terms?
Bitcoin Stack Exchange Answer
How are paths found in Lightning Network?
Bitcoin Stack Exchange Answer
How would the lightning network work between exchanges?
Each exchange will get to decide and need to implement the software into their system, but some ideas have been outlined here: Google Doc - Lightning Exchanges
Note that by virtue of the usual benefits of cost-less, instantaneous transactions, lightning will make arbitrage between exchanges much more efficient and thus lead to consistent pricing across exchange that adopt it. -- Source
How do lightning nodes find other lightning nodes?
Stack Exchange Answer
Does every user need to store the state of the complete Lightning Network?
According to Rusty's calculations we should be able to store 1 million nodes in about 100 MB, so that should work even for mobile phones. Beyond that we have some proposals ready to lighten the load on endpoints, but we'll cross that bridge when we get there. -- Source
Would I need to download the complete state every time I open the App and make a payment?
No you'd remember the information from the last time you started the app and only sync the differences. This is not yet implemented, but it shouldn't be too hard to get a preliminary protocol working if that turns out to be a problem. -- Source
What needs to happen for the Lightning Network to be deployed and what can I do as a user to help?
Lightning is based on participants in the network running lightning node software that enables them to interact with other nodes. This does not require being a full bitcoin node, but you will have to run "lnd", "eclair", or one of the other node softwares listed above.
All lightning wallets have node software integrated into them, because that is necessary to create payment channels and conduct payments on the network, but you can also intentionally run lnd or similar for public benefit - e.g. you can hold open payment channels or channels with higher volume, than you need for your own transactions. You would be compensated in modest fees by those who transact across your node with multi-hop payments. -- Source
Is there anyway for someone who isn't a developer to meaningfully contribute?
Sure, you can help write up educational material. You can learn and read more about the tech at http://dev.lightning.community/resources. You can test the various desktop and mobile apps out there (Lightning Desktop, Zap, Eclair apps). -- Source
Do I need to be a miner to be a Lightning Network node?
No -- Source
Do I need to run a full Bitcoin node to run a lightning node?
lit doesn't depend on having your own full node -- it automatically connects to full nodes on the network. -- Source
LND uses a light client mode, so it doesn't require a full node. The name of the light client it uses is called neutrino
How does the lightning network stop "Cheating" (Someone broadcasting an old transaction)?
Upon opening a channel, the two endpoints first agree on a reserve value, below which the channel balance may not drop. This is to make sure that both endpoints always have some skin in the game as rustyreddit puts it :-)
For a cheat to become worth it, the opponent has to be absolutely sure that you cannot retaliate against him during the timeout. So he has to make sure you never ever get network connectivity during that time. Having someone else also watching for channel closures and notifying you, or releasing a canned retaliation, makes this even harder for the attacker. This is because if he misjudged you being truly offline you can retaliate by grabbing all of its funds. Spotty connections, DDoS, and similar will not provide the attacker the necessary guarantees to make cheating worthwhile. Any form of uncertainty about your online status acts as a deterrent to the other endpoint. -- Source
How many times would someone need to open and close their lightning channels?
You typically want to have more than one channel open at any given time for redundancy's sake. And we imagine open and close will probably be automated for the most part. In fact we already have a feature in LND called autopilot that can automatically open channels for a user.
Frequency will depend whether the funds are needed on-chain or more useful on LN. -- Source
Will the lightning network reduce BTC Liquidity due to "locking-up" funds in channels?
Stack Exchange Answer
Can the Lightning Network work on any other cryptocurrency? How?
Stack Exchange Answer
When setting up a Lightning Network Node are fees set for the entire node, or each channel when opened?
You don't really set up a "node" in the sense that anyone with more than one channel can automatically be a node and route payments. Fees on LN can be set by the node, and can change dynamically on the network. -- Source
Can Lightning routing fees be changed dynamically, without closing channels?
Yes but it has to be implemented in the Lightning software being used. -- Source
How can you make sure that there will be routes with large enough balances to handle transactions?
You won't have to do anything. With autopilot enabled, it'll automatically open and close channels based on the availability of the network. -- Source
How does the Lightning Network stop flooding nodes (DDoS) with micro transactions? Is this even an issue?
Stack Exchange Answer

Unanswered Questions

How do on-chain fees work when opening and closing channels? Who pays the fee?
How does the Lightning Network work for mobile users?
What are the best practices for securing a lightning node?
What is a lightning "hub"?
How does lightning handle cross chain (Atomic) swaps?

Special Thanks and Notes

  • Many links found from awesome-lightning-network github
  • Everyone who submitted a question or concern!
  • I'm continuing to format for an easier Mobile experience!
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Weekly Update: Parachute Digestive, #UptrenndOC Contest, launch of Defswap, Harmony in India... – 8 Nov - 14 Nov'19

Weekly Update: Parachute Digestive, #UptrenndOC Contest, launch of Defswap, Harmony in India... – 8 Nov - 14 Nov'19
Hiya Parachuters! We are almost there. Just one more update to go after this to get completely upto speed with the latest week. So, here’s your week at Parachute + partners (8 Nov - 14 Nov'19):

Cap published the first Parachute Digestive ever - a biweekly summary of Parachute and ParJar-focused updates. That’s right – 21k users, 512k tips, 20k deposits, 33k withdrawals. Massive! OG Parachuters might have received an email as well. In trivias this week, we had a movie quiz in TTR for 2500 $PAR per Q and another one with a 25k $PAR prize pool. Charlotte’s Math trivia was another fun one with 2500 $PAR in prizes per question. Harry hosted a Netflix and TV show trivia. All your hours spent binging finally came to fruition. Tiproom games has moved to a new channel. This week’s creative contest by Jason involved creating a Christmas-themed promo poster to capture the spirit of Parachute that draws new people in to join. 50k $PAR in store for the winners of #Parichristmas. Yay! LordHades shared the first update of Fantasy Premier League (#FPL) this week. LH is at the top with 696 points followed by NovelCloud with 681 points and Chris (@Loki25) with 672 points.
#Parichristmas entries from A: Alejandro, B: Carlos Alfredo, C: Nat, D: Ali, E: Eva, F: Richi, G: FlareofFlame, H: Emma, I: Marcos, J: Carlos
Jason hosted a writing contest as well: “…write a scary short story, I mean really short. The max amount of words is 20. You need to have a parachute element in it somehow.” 10k $PAR in prizes each for top 3 winners of #donkeysattentionspan. Proud pet owners showed off their awesome pets and shared some of their stories in this week’s #wholesomewed. TTR Dance Contest started this week with prize pool of 15k $PAR for the top 5 winners and another 15k $PAR for participants. Videos would have to be to the rhythm of the TTR theme created by Jose. Super fun! In this week’s update of the Parachute Fantasy Football League (#PFFL), Clinton (8-2), Hang (8-2) and Chris (7-3) are still in top 3 with Chris sliding down to 3rd position. It is a four-way tie for 4th place with Alexis, Nilz, Ken and Andy, all at 6-4. Two-for-Tuesday this week was about bands or song titles named after a place - could be a city, state or country. Gian also unveiled the official logo for Two-for-Tuesday. A masterpiece by Jose:
This is too good, Jose!
aXpire’s article from last week on ResolvBilDigitalShares was published on Hackernoon this week and also got a shoutout from them. Nice! CEO Gary Markham travelled to an AltsMIA event to spread the word on aXpire. He also visited the Blockchain Center in Miami to explore partnership opportunities there. The team will be putting MatchBX on the backburner for the time being and shift all its focus to Resolvr, Bilr, Digital Shares, and PayBX. Click here to read more about the strategy. The latest weekly update video can be seen here. The weekly 20k $AXPR burn went ahead as per schedule. Remember the AMA form shared a few weeks back to collect all community questions? Matt posted detailed responses to them. How will the LegalTech space look in the future and what role could Bilr play in it? Read this article to find out. 2gether Ambassadors are the most active folks from the community who help make the 2gether brand more widespread. Looking good in that list Crypto French! CEO Ramón Ferraz spoke at a Cecabank event on Securities which was covered by the news outlet Expansión. As a special offer, Mike made posting on WednesdayClub dApp free on Wednesday for this week. Hope you didn’t miss the opportunity to post for free and earn some cool $WED in return. Winner of the Birdchain Copywrite Challenge was announced this week. If you are an ETHOS fan, don’t forget to follow Voyager on Twitter for the latest scoop. While the Tron chain support was scheduled to go live on the Switch-backed McAfeeDex this week, technical issues have resulted in delays. As $BOMB token reached 4.38% burn in total supply, Benjamin delved deep into the current market cycle. Take notes, trading enthusiasts!
Benjamin’s analysis videos are always the Bomb. Pardon the pun. Haha
The 3rd edition of Foundations of Fantom analysis report was published by Benjamin. This covers all recent happenings in Fantomverse and $FTM price action. Fantom officially announced its plans to enter the DeFi space. Exciting! The project had sponsored a CryptoBazar Serial Hacking meetup at the Seoul Blockchain Week last month. Here’s Technical Advisor Andre Cronje’s views on the participants at the event. Sikoba Network released the first version of the Isekai framework which was built with support from Fantom. This is a verifiable computation framework which allows you to verify a transaction on a third party computer without the computer having to do the transaction. So even if the third party is not to be trusted, the framework ensures that the verification is valid. Hope this makes sense. If not, read this. Fantom is hosting a blockchain challenge at AfricArena 2019 in partnership with XAR Network. The grand prize includes cash prizes and incubation. The 3 finalists were revealed this week. The latest technical paper from Fantom explores quick peer discovery in Proof-of-Stake protocols for faster consensus. The team will be applying results of the research to Lachesis. The crew will be sitting down for an AMA session with the Trust Wallet community next week. CMO Michael Chen also attended a "deals over dinner" event organised by RVO Internationaal and TNW X (a unit of TheNextWeb) this week in Singapore. In Constellation news, a flash $DAG node bounty for a Ledger Nano integration was scooped up quickly. VP Finance Mateo Gold travelled to the Blockchain Convergence in Europe representing Constellation. Drew Taylor and Brent Bates from Wild West Crypto Show interviewed founders Wyatt Meldman-Floch and Ben Jorgensen at the World Crypto Con 2019 in Las Vegas. As promised, here’s some more pics from Uptrennd’s visit to the Blockchain Summit in Malta: Pic 1, Pic 2 and here’s one with the BOMB/XIO crew. A number of fruitful connections were made at the Summit. Jeff wrote about it in a detailed post. An #UptrenndOC Contest was launched to encourage Original Content writers on the platform. The winners of the Uptrennd Flyer contest were announced too.
Some of the winning entries of #UptrenndFlyer contest
The latest District Weekly and Dev Update from District0x covers news such as introduction of a Discord tipbot, work on Meme Factory NSFW filter etc. WeTrust featured Ethlance in the latest CryptoUnlocked newsletter in their DApp Spotlight section. Check out the pics from Hydro’s visit to the AIBC Summit in Malta. Hydrogen hosts demo days to do product showcases of all their offerings. Click here to see the latest one which will be the last for this year. The beta version of the Hydro Digital Art dApp is about to be released on their dApp Store. In preparation of the event, Hydro Labs posted a thread to explain the objectives of the dApp. For a summary of all the updates in Silent Notary’s Ubikiri wallet, click here. We had covered some of these last week. The Bitcoin News covered the platform in a recent article. Last week, the Sentivate community voted to have more ELI5 content on core web technologies. This week, they voted on Blockfolio to have this content in Video format. For a start, here’s a primer on the core technologies of the web written by the team. Founder Thomas Marchi's interview Mr. Backwards was released. If you missed OST CEO Jason Goldberg's keynote speech "Designing Crypto User Experiences for Humans" at San Francisco Blockchain Week, fret not. Here's the video and write-up of his entire presentation. Pepo has been gaining quite the traction for some weeks now. This was an opportune moment, to publish a detailed piece and tweet thread on it. The app was also reviewed by Crypto Insights Journal. The OST/Pepo crew set up shop at BlockShow in Singapore where Pepo will be launched officially in Asia and Jason will deliver another keynote speech in the same lines as SFBW. Catch up on all SelfKey news that you may have missed in October from the latest roundup. We have covered most of these in our previous updates.
<- Sneak peek into an average day at Parachute / Pitch decks & new landing page being prepared ->
Dirtybags.org is an aggregator site where you can earn $BAGS tokens by sharing linked articles and news items from the cryptospace. Try it out! Arena Match has started a weekly raffle for $AMGO holders where the top 212 holders get automatically entered into a draw to win NFT prizes. Sweet! Check out the prizes of next week’s raffle here. Pynk’s engagement game is always on point. As evident from their merch giveaway activity at the Blockchain Summit in Malta. To get started with the equity fund raise on Seedrs, the team shot a promo video. Do you track Gold prices and want to track $BTC now or vice versa? Their tracking metrics may not be as similar as you thought. Pynk explains why in this article. Shuffle Monster founder Agustín Aguilar launched Defswap which is a Uniswap extension for deflationary tokens hosted in a decentralised manner. Wibson participated in a CryptoMondays event in Buenos Aires hosted by VC firm NXTP and ONG Bitcoin Argentina for networking and discussions on crypto. $WIB community voted for Shopping Gift Cards in a poll to decide the nature of rewards on the Wibson Reward Marketplace. Harmony's #HSMtalks this week focused on Harmony DAO Maker. The $ONE crew travelled to India to talk shop and get a feel of the Indian crypto ecosystem. From Bangalore to Delhi, they covered 2 major startup hubs. As part of #CryptourUkraine, Harmony was invited to a meetup at Dnipro by Okex. Next week they will be at Odessa. Harmony is heavily invested in the future of DeFi and continues to do research and development in this segment. In light of that, they released two articles - one on how Harmony will set its foundation in the DeFi ecosystem and the other on how it will advance the space and its Cross-Fi plans (Cross-Fi = DeFi + Cross-Border txns). Harmony’s staking ROI is already No. 1 as per EarnCryptoInterest.com. What is staking? Watch this. A new Team Challenge launched this week - win $ONE tokens for building local communities. Neat! The latest episode of Harmony Insights introduces us to the engineers building on the platform.

And with that, it’s a wrap. See you again with another update. Cheerio!
submitted by abhijoysarkar to ParachuteToken [link] [comments]

Staking — The New Way to Earn Crypto for Free

Staking — The New Way to Earn Crypto for Free

https://preview.redd.it/jpadsinyz3c41.png?width=616&format=png&auto=webp&s=c0dc410484430b863b0488727f92135f218edff2
Airdrops are so 2017, free money was fun while it lasted but now when someone says free money in crypto, the first thoughts are scams and ponzi schemes. But in 2020, there is a way to earn free money, in a legitimate, common practice, and logical manner — staking.
Staking is the core concept behind the Proof-of-Stake (PoS) consensus protocol that is quickly becoming an industry standard throughout blockchain projects. PoS allows blockchains to scale effectively without compromising on security and resource efficiency. Projects that incorporate staking include aelf, Dash, EOS, Cosmos, Cardano, Dfinity and many others.

https://preview.redd.it/luczupo004c41.png?width=616&format=png&auto=webp&s=2a2aba11c35c9962e42d1ea56b9e4f33532750ef

PoW — Why change

First, let’s look at some of the issues facing Proof-of-Work (PoW) consensus that led to the development of PoS.
  1. Excessive energy consumption — In 2017, many concerns were raised over the amount of electricity used by the bitcoin network (Largest PoW blockchain). Since then the energy consumption has increased by over 400%, to the point where 1 single transaction on this network has the same carbon footprint of 736,722 Visa transactions or consumes the same amount of electricity as over 20 U.S. households.
  2. Varying Electricity Costs — The profit of any miner on the network is tied to two costs, the initial startup cost to obtain the hardware and infrastructure, and more critically, the running cost of said equipment in relation to electricity usage. Electricity costs can vary from fractions of a cent per kWh to over 50 cents (USD) and in some cases it is free. When a user may only be earning $0.40 USD per hour then this will clearly rule out certain demographics based purely on electricity costs, reducing the potential for complete decentralization.
  3. Reduced decentralization — Due to the high cost of the mining equipment, those with large financial bases setup mining farms, either for others to rent out individual miners or entirely for personal gains. This results in large demographic hotspots on the network reducing the decentralized aspect to a point where it no longer accomplishes this aspect.
  4. Conflicted interests — The requirements of running miners on the network are purely based on having possession of the hardware, electricity and internet connection. There are no limits to the amount a miner can earn, nor do they need to hold any stake in the network, and thus there is very little incentive for them to vote on upgrades that may benefit the network but reduce their rewards.
I want to take this moment to mention a potential benefit to PoW that I have not seen anyone mention previously. It is a very loose argument so don’t take this to heart too strongly.
Consistent Fiat Injection — The majority of miners will be paying for their electricity in fiat currency. At a conservative rate of $0.1 USD per kWh, the network currently uses 73.12 TWh per year. This equates to an average daily cost of over $20 million USD. This means every day around $20 million of fiat currency is effectively being injected into the bitcoin network. Although this concept is somewhat flawed in the sense that the same amount of bitcoin will be released each day regardless of how much is spent on electricity, I’m looking at this from the eyes of the miners, they are reducing their fiat bags and increasing their bitcoin bags. This change of bags is the essence of this point which will inevitably encourage crypto spending. If the bitcoin bags were increased but fiat bags did not decrease, then there would be less incentive to spend the bitcoin, as would see in a staking ecosystem.

https://preview.redd.it/8dtqt6e204c41.png?width=631&format=png&auto=webp&s=065aedde87b55f0768968307e59e62a35eac949d

PoS Variations

Different approaches have been taken to tackle different issues the PoS protocol faces. Will Little has an excellent article explaining this and more in PoS, but let me take an excerpt from his piece to go through them:
  • Coin-age selection — Blockchains like Peercoin (the first PoS chain), start out with PoW to distribute the coins, use coin age to help prevent monopolization and 51% attacks (by setting a time range when the probability of being selected as a node is greatest), and implement checkpoints initially to prevent NoS problems.
  • Randomized block selection — Chains like NXT and Blackcoin also use checkpoints, but believe that coin-age discourages staking. After an initial distribution period (either via PoW or otherwise), these chains use algorithms to randomly select nodes that can create blocks.
  • Ethereum’s Casper protocol(s) — Being already widely distributed, Ethereum doesn’t have to worry about the initial distribution problem when/if it switches to PoS. Casper takes a more Byzantine Fault Tolerant (BFT) approach and will punish nodes by taking away (“slashing”) their stake if they do devious things. In addition, consensus is formed by a multi-round process where every randomly assigned node votes for a specific block during a round.
  • Delegated Proof-of-Stake (DPoS) — Invented by Dan Larimer and first used in Bitshares (and then in [aelf,] Steem, EOS, and many others), DPoS tackles potential PoS problems by having the community “elect” delegates that will run nodes to create and validate blocks. Bad behavior is then punished by the community simply out-voting the delegated nodes.
  • Delegated Byzantine Fault Tolerance (DBFT) — Similar to DPoS, the NEO community votes for (delegates) nodes, but instead of each node producing blocks and agreeing on consensus, only 2 out of 3 nodes need to agree on what goes in every block (acting more like bookkeepers than validators).
  • Tendermint — As a more sophisticated form of DBFT and a precursor to Casper, Jae Kwon introduced tendermint in 2014, which leverages dynamic validator sets, rotating leader elections, and voting power (i.e. weight) that is proportional to the self-funding and community allocation of tokens to a node (i.e. a “validator”).
  • Masternodes — First introduced by DASH, a masternode PoS system requires nodes to stake a minimum threshold of coins in order to qualify as a node. Often this comes with requirements to provide “service” to a network in the form of governance, special payment protocols, etc…
  • Proof of Importance (POI)NEM takes a slightly different approach by granting an “importance calculation” to masternodes staking at least 10,000 XEM. This POI system then rewards active nodes that act in a positive way over time to impact the community.
  • “Proof-of-X” — And finally, there is no lack of activity in the PoS world to come up with clever approaches and variants of staking (some are more elaborate than others). In addition to BFT protocols such as Honeybadger, Ouroboros, and Tezos, for further reading, also check out “Proof-of-”: Stake Anonymous, Storage, Stake Time, Stake Velocity, Activity, Burn, and Capacity.
https://preview.redd.it/n28a8n5404c41.png?width=604&format=png&auto=webp&s=0ea8827fd0458e768d4eb3a0a1fa88c984ba0a82

Earning Your Stake

In order to understand how one can earn money from these networks, I’ll break them down into 3 categories: Simple staking, Running nodes, and Voting.
Simple Staking - This is the simplest of the 3 methods and requires almost no action by the user. Certain networks will reward users by simply holding tokens in a specified wallet. These rewards are generally minimal but are the easiest way to earn.
Running a node - This method provides the greatest rewards but also requires the greatest action by the user and most likely will require ongoing maintenance. Generally speaking, networks will require nodes to stake a certain amount of tokens often amounting to thousands of dollars. In DPoS systems, these nodes must be voted in by other users on the network and must continue to provide confidence to their supporters. Some companies will setup nodes and allow users to participate by contributing to the minimum staking amount, with a similar concept to PoW mining pools.
Voting - This mechanism works hand in hand with running nodes in relation to DPoS networks. Users are encouraged to vote for their preferred nodes by staking tokens as votes. Each vote will unlock a small amount of rewards for each voter, the nodes are normally the ones to provide these rewards as a portion of their own reward for running a node.

Aelf’s DPoS system

The aelf consensus protocol utilizes a form of DPoS. There are two versions of nodes on the network, active nodes & backup nodes (official names yet to be announced). Active nodes run the network and produce the blocks, while the backup nodes complete minor tasks and are on standby should any active nodes go offline or act maliciously. These nodes are selected based upon their number of votes received. Initially the top 17 nodes will be selected as active nodes, while the next 100 will stand as the backup ones, each voting period each node may change position should they receive more or less votes than the previous period. In order to be considered as a node, one must stake a minimum amount of ELF tokens (yet to be announced).

https://preview.redd.it/47d3wqe604c41.png?width=618&format=png&auto=webp&s=062a6aa6186b826d400a0015d4c91fd1a4ed0b65
In order to participate as a voter, there is no minimum amount of tokens to be staked. When one stakes, their tokens will be locked for a designated amount of time, selected by the voter from the preset periods. If users pull their tokens out before this locked period has expired no rewards are received, but if they leave them locked for the entire time frame they will receive the set reward, and the tokens will be automatically rolled over into the next locked period. As a result, should a voter decide, once their votes are cast, they can continue to receive rewards without any further action needed.
Many projects have tackled with node rewards in order to make them fair, well incentivized but sustainable for everyone involved. Aelf has come up with a reward structure based on multiple variables with a basic income guaranteed for every node. Variables may include the number of re-elections, number of votes received, or other elements.
As the system matures, the number of active nodes will be increased, resulting in a more diverse and secure network.
Staking as a solution is a win-win-win for network creators, users and investors. It is a much more resource efficient and scalable protocol to secure blockchain networks while reducing the entry point for users to earn from the system.
submitted by Floris-Jan to aelfofficial [link] [comments]

IOTA and Tangle discussion/info, scam or not?

In the past weeks I heard a lot pros and cons about IOTA, many of them I believe were not true (I'll explain better). I would like to start a serious discussion about IOTA and help people to get into it. Before that I'll contribute with what I know, most things that I will say will have a source link providing some base content.
 
The pros and cons that I heard a lot is listed below, I'll discuss the items marked with *.
Pros
Cons
 

Scalability

Many users claim that the network infinitely scales, that with more transactions on the network the faster it gets. This is not entirely true, that's why we are seeing the network getting congested (pending transactions) at the moment (12/2017).
The network is composed by full-nodes (stores all transactions), each full-node is capable of sending transactions direct to the tangle. An arbitrary user can set a light-node (do not store all transactions, therefore a reduced size), but as it does not stores all transactions and can't decide if there are conflicting transactions (and other stuff) it needs to connect to a full-node (bitifinex node for example) and then request for the full-node to send a transaction to the tangle. The full-node acts like a bridge for a light-node user, the quantity of transactions at the same time that a full-node can push to the tangle is limited by its brandwidth.
What happens at the moment is that there are few full-nodes, but more important than that is: the majority of users are connected to the same full-node basically. The full-node which is being used can't handle all the requested transactions by the light-nodes because of its brandwidth. If you are a light-node user and is experiencing slow transactions you need to manually select other node to get a better performance. Also, you need to verify that the minimum weight magnitude (difficulty of the Hashcash Proof of Work) is set to 14 at least.
The network seems to be fine and it scales, but the steps an user has to make/know are not friendly-user at all. It's necessary to understand that the technology envolved is relative new and still in early development. Do not buy iota if you haven't read about the technology, there is a high chance of you losing your tokens because of various reasons and it will be your own fault. You can learn more about how IOTA works here.
There are some upcoming solutions that will bring the user-experience to a new level, The UCL Wallet (expected to be released at this month, will talk about that soon and how it will help the network) and the Nelson CarrIOTA (this week) besides the official implementations to come in december.
 

Centralization

We all know that currently (2017) IOTA depends on the coordinator because the network is still in its infancy and because of that it is considered centralized by the majority of users.
The coordinator are several full-nodes scattered across the world run by the IOTA foundation. It creates periodic Milestones (zero value transactions which reference valid transactions) which are validated by the entire network. The coordinator sets the general direction for the tangle growth. Every node verifies that the coordinator is not breaking consensus rules by creating iotas out of thin air or approving double-spendings, nodes only tells other nodes about transactions that are valid, if the Coordinator starts issuing bad Milestones, nodes will reject them.
The coordinator is optional since summer 2017, you can choose not implement it in your full-node, any talented programmer could replace Coo logic in IRI with Random Walk Monte Carlo logic and go without its milestones right now. A new kind of distributed coordinator is about to come and then, for the last, its completely removal. You can read more about the coordinator here and here.

Mining-Blockchain-based Cryptocurrencies

These are blockchain-based cryptocurrencies (Bitcoin) that has miners to guarantee its security. Satoshi Nakamoto states several times in the Bitcoin whitepaper that "The system is secure as long as honest nodes collectively control more CPU power than any cooperating group of attacker nodes". We can see in Blockchain.info that nowadays half of the total hashpower in Bitcoin is controlled by 3 companies (maybe only 1 in the future?). Users must trust that these companies will behave honestly and will not use its 50%> hashpower to attack the network eventually. With all that said it's reasonable to consider the IOTA network more decentralized (even with the coordinator) than any mining-blockchain-based cryptocurrency
You can see a comparison between DAG cryptocurrencies here
 

IOTA partnerships

Some partnerships of IOTA foundation with big companies were well known even when they were not officialy published. Some few examples of confirmed partnerships are listed below, others cofirmed partnerships can be seem in the link Partnerships with big companies at the pros section.
So what's up with all alarming in social media about IOTA Foundation faking partnerships with big companies like Microsoft and Cisco?
At Nov. 28th IOTA Foundation announced the Data Marketplace with 30+ companies participating. Basically it's a place for any entity sell data (huge applications, therefore many companies interested), at time of writing (11/12/2017) there is no API for common users, only companies in touch with IOTA Foundation can test it.
A quote from Omkar Naik (Microsoft worker) depicted on the Data Marketplace blog post gave an idea that Microsoft was in a direct partnership with IOTA. Several news websites started writing headlines "Microsoft and IOTA launches" (The same news site claimed latter that IOTA lied about partnership with Microsoft) when instead Microsoft was just one of the many participants of the Data Marketplace. Even though it's not a direct partnership, IOTA and Microsoft are in close touch as seen in IOTA Microsoft and Bosch meetup december 12th, Microsoft IOTA meetup in Paris 14th and Microsoft Azure adds 5 new Blockchain partners (may 2016). If you join the IOTA Slack channel you'll find out that there are many others big companies in close touch with IOTA like BMW, Tesla and other companies. This means that right now there are devs of IOTA working directly with scientists of these companies to help them integrate IOTA on their developments even though there is no direct partnership published, I'll talk more about the use cases soon.
We are excited to partner with IOTA foundation and proud to be associated with its new data marketplace initiative... - Omkar Naik
 

IOTA's use cases

Every cryptocurrency is capable of being a way to exchange goods, you pay for something using the coin token and receive the product. Some of them are more popular or have faster transactions or anonymity while others offers better scalablity or user-friendness. But none of them (except IOTA) are capable of transactioning information with no costs (fee-less transactions), in an securely form (MAM) and being sure that the network will not be harmed when it gets more adopted (scales). These characteristics open the gates for several real world applications, you probably might have heard of Big Data and how data is so important nowadays.
Data sets grow rapidly - in part because they are increasingly gathered by cheap and numerous information-sensing Internet of things devices such as mobile devices, aerial (remote sensing), software logs, cameras, microphones, radio-frequency identification (RFID) readers and wireless sensor networks.
 
It’s just the beginning of the data period. Data is going to be so important for human life in the future. So we are now just starting. We are a big data company, but compared to tomorrow, we are nothing. - Jack Ma (Alibaba)
There are enormous quantities of wasted data, often over 99% is lost to the void, that could potentially contain extremely valuable information if allowed to flow freely in data streams that create an open and decentralized data lake that is accessible to any compensating party. Some of the biggest corporations of the world are purely digital like Google, Facebook and Amazon. Data/information market will be huge in the future and that's why there so many companies interested in what IOTA can offer.
There are several real world use cases being developed at the moment, many of them if successful will revolutionize the world. You can check below a list of some of them.
Extra
These are just few examples, there are a lot more ongoing and to explore.
 

IOTA Wallet (v2.5.4 below)

For those who have read a lot about IOTA and know how it works the wallet is fine, but that's not the case for most users. Issues an user might face if decide to use the current wallet:
Problems that could be easily avoided with a better understand of the network/wallet or with a better wallet that could handle these issues. As I explained before, some problems during the "congestion" of the network could be simply resolved if stuff were more user-friendly, this causes many users storing their iotas on exchanges which is not safe either.
The upcoming (dec 2017) UCL Wallet will solve most of these problems. It will switch between nodes automatically and auto-reattach transactions for example (besides other things). You can have full a overview of it here and here. Also, the upcoming Nelson CarrIOTA will help on automatic peer discovery for users setup their nodes more easily.
 

IOTA Vulnerability issue

On sept 7th 2017 a team from MIT reported a cryptographic issue on the hash function Curl. You can see the full response of IOTA members below.
Funds were never in danger as such scenarios depicted on the Neha's blogpost were not pratically possible and the arguments used on the blogpost had'nt fundamentals, all the history you can check by yourself on the responses. Later it was discovered that the whole Neha Narula's team were envolved in other concurrent cryptocurrency projects
Currently IOTA uses the relatively hardware intensive NIST standard SHA-3/Keccak for crucial operations for maximal security. Curl is continuously being audited by more cryptographers and security experts. Recenlty IOTA Foundation hired Cybercrypt, the world leading lightweight cryptography and security company from Denmark to take the Curl cryptography to its next maturation phase.
 
It took me a couple of days to gather the informations presented, I wanted it to make easier for people who want to get into it. It might probably have some mistakes so please correct me if I said something wrong. Here are some useful links for the community.
This is my IOTA donation address, in case someone wants to donate I will be very thankful. I truly believe in this project's potential.
I9YGQVMWDYZBLHGKMTLBTAFBIQHGLYGSAGLJEZIV9OKWZSHIYRDSDPQQLTIEQEUSYZWUGGFHGQJLVYKOBWAYPTTGCX
 
This is a donation address, if you want to do the same you might pay attention to some important details:
  • Create a seed for only donation purposes.
  • Generate a address and publish it for everyone.
  • If you spend any iota you must attach a new address to the tangle and refresh your donation address published before to everyone.
  • If someone sends iota to your previous donation address after you have spent from it you will probably lose the funds that were sent to that specific address.
  • You can visualize how addresses work in IOTA here and here.
This happens because IOTA uses Winternitz one-time signature to become quantum resistent. Every time you spend iota from a address, part of the private key of that specific address is revealed. This makes easier for attackers to steal that address balance. Attackers can search if an address has been reused on the tangle explorer and try to brute force the private key since they already know part of it.
submitted by mvictordbz to CryptoCurrency [link] [comments]

BankDex - The First Exchange to Overcome High Latency in Cryptocurrency Exchanges

BankDex - The First Exchange to Overcome High Latency in Cryptocurrency Exchanges
BankDex is a user-friendly decentralized exchange, which ensures fiat trading with fast withdrawals and near-feeless transactions. Our team aims to involve new users in blockchain community by eliminating barriers relating with the complexity of buying, transferring & cashing out assets. In this article we research crypto exchanges market and our potential share at first, and then show our benefits and solutions and how it works.
DEX market overview
Encrybit team revealed real-time cryptocurrency exchange problems survey insights1. 1108 crypto traders were questioned: “What are the biggest concerns that you see in currently available exchanges!”. The main issues faced are:

https://preview.redd.it/z22h0m5g2lh31.png?width=500&format=png&auto=webp&s=f215be996b422c10f24bf5c273feb3cc19eab3ab
The second question was which exchange do you like, and virtually all respondents referred to centralized exchanges (CEX) here. This survey can be supported by market researches. Trading data from six major centralized exchanges (Binance, Bitfinex, Bithumb HitBTC, Huobi and OKEX) was compared to that from nine leading decentralized exchanges (Bancor Network, BitShares, DDEX, EtherDelta, ForkDelta, IDEX, OpenLedger, StellarTerm, and the Waves Platform). The share of DEX was only 2% of the total trading volume2. The reason is clear: the current generation of DEX has made progress only in security concerns3, while contributing to all other problems and suffering new, like fragmented markets4, no fiat support5, no scaling6, the impossibility of transactions between different blockchains7. Also clear that market is looking forward to flagman product which will eliminate challenges and will enable market growth. Experts highly estimate its potential. Increasing the number of institutional investors8, DEXs should reach up to 4% of total crypto market volume within the next two years. This would mean growth of 5–20x for DEX usage.
A Primer to BankDex
BankDex is a decentralized exchange built in response to the demands of the cryptocurrency users, for a simplified and enhanced trading platform. The platform is built on a robust ecosystem that promotes an enriched user experience, low latency, greater liquidity and security for user transactions.
BankDex employs a loose mesh topology powered by kernel nodes which are responsible for faster transaction persistence and validation. In addition to ensuring faster transactions that can be completed in less than a second, they are also highly resistant to security attacks by being Asynchronous Byzantine Fault Tolerant (aBFT).
The exchange features an impressive collection of crypto — crypto pairing across its network. The array of its supported tokens and cryptocurrencies currently includes BTC, XRP, XLM, ADA, ETH, TRX, EOS, QNT, VIBE, MKR, ZIL and REM, with many more to be added along the timeline.
BankDex allows its users to withdraw funds for free from their wallet. Third party wallet integration is also one of those features to be integrated in the near future. The BankDex transaction management system is both unique and secure, ensuring a flawless trading platform for cryptocurrency users.
Latency and Cryptocurrency Exchanges
Traders handling large quantities of cryptocurrency trade often find themselves in need of an exchange with one particular feature — low latency. In the simplest of terms, latency can be defined as the delay to receive a response after a request is made. As it connects with trading, latency affects the amount of time required for traders to mingle with the market.
Latency, in trading terms, implies to the speed with which a trading platform can react to the present status of the market. Trading platforms integrate programs specially designed to buy and sell assets in less than a second. Low latency means that these platforms are able to react faster to the actions of the market. The rapid nature of today’s market enables traders to make a significant amount of money.
Traders who take part in such kind of trade look for very low latency, somewhere in the range 10 milliseconds to 0.1 milliseconds. This kind of speed limit can be reliably accomplished by machines only. For low latency trades to be worthwhile and lucrative, users require an exchange that can handle such high speeds. The ideal latency will figure around a speed of 0.5ms, but this is quite difficult to accomplish.
Managing Latency in BankDex
BankDex decentralized cryptocurrency exchange addresses the latency issue with the lightning network concept, which ensures faster and safer trade of crypto & fiat currency. It overcomes the scalability issues, inherent to blockchain and enhances the throughput and latencies associated with a transaction.
The trading exchange consists of seven blockchains, which communicate with the core through a set of communication protocols. The communication between the different blockchains is established with the help of an interoperable blockchain router.

https://preview.redd.it/hl2x804p2lh31.png?width=500&format=png&auto=webp&s=1acd6b6db00d287cce3fd537a1593c45e06e73d8
BankDex and the Lightning Network
A lightning network can be described as a protocol layer that enables low-latency, high volume digital micropayments without the help of an intermediary. The fundamental technology of lightning network involves a payment channel, a local two-party consensus.
Both the parties involved in the transaction sends an initial amount of Bitcoin, or any cryptocurrency token into a multisignature transaction. The multisignature transaction involves a local consensus on the existing balance that is allocated between the two parties in the transaction.
Any update regarding the allocation of the existing balance can be only be made with the cooperation of both entities involved in the transaction. This is done with the help of a new transaction that spends the funds allocated for the multisignature transactions allocated to each party.
Website : https://www.bankdex.io/ Twitter : https://twitter.com/bank_dex Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/bankdex.io Telegram : https://t.me/BankdexChatOfficial Whitepaper : https://www.bankdex.io/index.php/white-pape Technical Paper : https://www.bankdex.io/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/Technical-Paper.pdf
Bounty0x username : nefsim

https://preview.redd.it/gbwx5k8a3lh31.png?width=250&format=png&auto=webp&s=5fc0532ff9dfa10013faf2b36a4dcf1fca45b419
submitted by hayrimavi1 to ico [link] [comments]

Bitcoin protocol upgrade (hard fork) mega thread

There has been a lot of forking-related questions recently. This thread serves to provide a platform to talk about forking and what it means to you as a Bitcoin user. Just like with everything, this is a work in progress and we need the community’s input on what it should contain. The below is just a primer. If you want to add to it, please leave a comment below with what you want to add. If you have general questions about forking, feel free to post that in this thread’s comments too and others will try to answer.
What is a hard fork?
A hard fork is when a block is broadcast under a new and different set of protocol rules which is accepted by nodes that have upgraded to support the new protocol. In this case, Bitcoin diverges from a single blockchain to two separate blockchains (a majority chain and a minority chain).
There will be two blockchains after a fork, is that right?
Yes, that is correct. Some argue that having two chains is problematic, but that is only the case if you believe that the minority chain will survive and have more market value than the majority chain.
Is a hard fork bad?
Hard forks are just protocol upgrades. If you want to have a better designed Bitcoin protocol, periodically you will have to upgrade (fork) to make it happen. A planned fork is nothing to panic about. In fact, just like with Bitcoin halving every four years, protocol upgrades can be celebrated too.
What will happen to my bitcoin when a fork happens?
Don’t worry, your bitcoin is safe! The most important thing as a user who wants to control their own money (bitcoin), is that you will want to store your bitcoin in a wallet where you have control over the private key. As long as you do that, post-fork you can spend your coins however you’d like. But if you leave your coins on an exchange for example where you may not have control over your private key, post-fork the exchange will have to determine which blockchain your coins belong to.
When will the fork happen?
Every fork is different, so generally speaking there isn’t one answer that can fit every scenario. Most recently the protocol upgrade that has caused the most news has been Bitcoin Unlimited (BU) and the consensus mechanism Emergent Consensus (EC is also supported by Bitcoin Classic), which removes the temporary Bitcoin block size limit like the original client and lets the free market decide what block size is best, allowing for on-chain scaling. BU doesn’t have a set activation period. Once there is consensus among Bitcoin user nodes and mining nodes that signal an acceptable block size using BU, the blockchain will begin to diverge. For more information for miners on how to safely fork to BU, please read the ViaBTC Miner Guide.
Has a hard fork ever happened before?
Forks have successfully been implemented often in other cryptocurrencies. In fact there are very few instances of hard forks failing. On the Bitcoin blockchain there has already been one successful hard fork in the past. This hard fork was carried out in response to a serious bug found in Bitcoin that could be used to create billions of bitcoin. A hard fork was planned and carried out in a short amount of time to fix this big.
Why is a hard fork likely to happen?
A fork is likely to happen due to a fundamental disagreement between different groups of the Bitcoin community on how the Bitcoin protocol will progress in the future. A long and important debate has carried on within the community for the past several years and consensus has been unable to be found on a path forward. A hard fork is one method for finding a way forward using using Nakamoto Consensus; read the Bitcoin whitepaper to understand the underlying architecture of how Bitcoin was built.
I’ve heard about replay attacks when forking, what are they?
When there is a chain split, you may end up with coins on both sides of the blockchain (two coins), for example Bitcoin Core (BTC-C) and Bitcoin Unlimited (BTC-U). A replay attack is when a user broadcasts both coins on both blockchains, taking advantage of exchanges that might not have protection against these attacks. Recently exchanges have reached out to the Bitcoin community for suggestions on the best way to handle these situations.
How can I keep track of the ongoing consensus finding of the fork?
There are many sites to keep track of how people are voting within the community. For example you can see how people are economically voting, how miners are signaling (also over last 1000 blocks), and how user nodes are signaling. If you're unsure, you can always submit a post and ask your peers what they think!
Thanks to the following people for helping with the questions/answers:
submitted by BitcoinXio to btc [link] [comments]

Elastos ($ELA): Why you should be paying attention to 2018's most bullish project!

Elastos (ELA) is arguably the biggest coin with the brightest future that no one has heard of. Apart from a recent ad in Times Square (https://twitter.com/fayliela/status/958884043004657664), Elastos has been under the radar, but that is about to change. The amount of collaborations, investors, and new dApps being announced is staggering and it's difficult for me to keep up with all of them so as always, DYOR and treat this as a primer on ELA.
What is Elastos?
Elastos aims to create a new Internet powered by blockchain technology. Rong Chen, founder of Elastos, and his team have created Elastos OS, an entire operating system as well as a virtual machine and runtime that can help developers integrate Elastos into existing applications we use and love on every major operating system, today. So you can literally integrate Elastos into an iOS or Android app, or a Windows or Mac app (credit to matrixapp). Elastos has already delivered on this promise having just released their prototype mobile OS https://twitter.com/bytesizecapital/status/961812042305777665.
On this new Internet, people will be able to own digital assets, generate wealth from them, run distributed applications, all while utilizing the immutable and superior security of the blockchain. Today, there is a seemingly infinite supply of digital books, movies, music and games. But people do not necessarily own their digital property. You can purchase a digital book, for example, but you can’t sell it to anyone else. So, do you really own it? Elastos wants to make digital assets scarce, identifiable and tradable. Property rights pave the way for wealth creation, and Elastos intends to build a new World Wide Web that respects those rights.
Bitcoin = Trustworthy Ledger
Ethereum = Trustworthy Ledger + Smart Contracts
Elastos = Trustworthy Ledger + Smart Contracts + Monetizable Dapps and Digital Assets
Elastos already has already delivered a mobile OS, mainnet, wallet, and has announced the first 5 dApps for the platform.
Who are Elastos backers/partners?
Together, they're the owners/developers/publishers/China distributors of the following games: Counterstrike GO, Magic the Gathering, Star Trek Online, Dota 2, Dungeons & Dragons, Neverwinter, and more (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Perfect_World_Entertainment).
What is G3?
Da Hongfei of NEO and Jihan Wu of Bitmain are both early investors and advisors to Elastos. Jihan Wu has committed to redirecting hashing power from Bitcoin mining to Elastos. G3 is a co-operation between NEO, Elastos and Bitmain who share a vision of a decentralized economy and smart web. Key features of the smart web include the virtual machine, runtime environments and trust zone, provided by Elastos and Bitmain, consensus provided by NEO and KYC provided by Ontology.
G3 is meant to cooperate with Chinese government regulations and considering two of the leading figures of Chinese blockchain are involved (Jihan Wu and Da Hongfei), the likelihood that these projects will greatly succeed when the Chinese adopt crypto-friendly regulations is very, very high. China appears poised to change their cryptocurrency regulations soon: http://news.8btc.com/chinese-scholar-china-to-release-new-policy-on-cryptocurrency-and-ico-in-2018
How is the ELA token used?
ELA tokens have a low coin supply, only 33 million in total will ever exist. Circulating supply is 6.5 million according to Huobi, but because of the 1-3 year token lockup program Elastos has introduced that number is expected to decrease (see: https://medium.com/@elastos/elastos-token-distribution-mechanism-position-locking-and-return-plan-acaa015592ef). Locking your ELA tokens generates a annual return rates of between 4-6% depending on the amount of time you elect to lock your tokens for. Refer to link above for more details.
ELA tokens are mined using 'shared mining' with Bitcoin which means ELA mining piggybacks on Bitcoin mining. Essentially, no additional resources are used to mine ELA (which is important environmentally). ELA will be a staking token in later 2018. ELA holders will receive airdrops of all coins created on the Elastos ecosystem which they refer to as ‘sugar dividends’, there are more details to be released on this but further reading can be found in the white paper as well as: https://twitter.com/fayliela/status/959909521756848128, https://medium.com/@elastos/ecosystem-collaboration-governance-reward-mechanism-690d1adf331b
Any tokens generated on Elastos will be required to lock 2-5% of their total token supply in ELA. This is huge considering dApps by companies as massive as Zapya (400m users), Huawei, Alibaba, and the unnamed massive gaming company (as well as more to come which has been hinted at many times by Elastos team) will need to generate their own tokens on Elastos or utilize ELA for transaction fees and creating digital assets on the Elastos blockchain.
Resources
Where to buy?
$ELA is purchasable on Huobi
submitted by stardawg777 to CryptoCurrency [link] [comments]

EASY CRYPTO CURRENCY WITH VOLENTIX

EASY CRYPTO CURRENCY WITH VOLENTIX

https://preview.redd.it/frpr4y90o5131.jpg?width=780&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=6433f475a3da8f93ce9986a170250cc379ff0f2e
The journey of volentix began two years ago with blockchain technology and the philosophy of being a decentralized platform. At a time when bitcoin mining developed very fast, peer-to-peer technology enabled the development of a system that enabled the change of assets, used artificial intelligence (AI), and encouraged participation.
VOLENTIX, creating a decentralized, natural mass investment environment, aims to enable the masses to take advantage of the power they have created themselves through DAO (decentralized Autonomous Organization).
VOLENTIX is preparing to introduce its own digital value unit VTX token.

The Volentix project is the result of a joint effort to enhance the use of cryptocurrency. For this purpose, a decentralized cryptocurrency swap exchange, a wallet supporting multiple currencies, a cryptographic currency analytical engine with a control panel listed by artificial intelligence, and vtx coins published on the EOS blockchain that does not store the user's securities or personal information.

Volentix can be both described above and a lot more. Because the joint effort for the project is supported by independent developers and developers working to achieve mutually complementary goals around the world.


https://preview.redd.it/1dszwd41o5131.png?width=785&format=png&auto=webp&s=c5ae4ed9c1676a479eda9faf310bbd817d12e33d

MARKET ENTRY:
To enter the prevailing market mandate, the VOLENTIX ecosystem introduces an initializing array of four digital applications known as VENUE, VERTO, VESPUCCI, and VDEX.
Venue: Venue is a dynamic community platform that recruits and aligns members of the VOLENTIX community to facilitate distribution of the native VTX token, and to promote awareness of VOLENTIX community initiatives. Please visit https://venue.volentix.io for more information.
Verto: Verto is a multi-currency wallet for use with the VDEX exchange and intends to provide custody for private keys in peer-to-peer transactions. Both private and public keys will be locally managed, with the goal of eliminating any risks of devastating losses associated with the traumatic failures of central operators. Please read the VERTO primer by visiting http://verto.vdex.io/
Vespucci: Vespucci is envisioned as an analytics engine, accessible via a user-friendly interface with real-time treasure troves of market data, such as ratings and sentiment analysis.
Vespucci wishes to empower users with tools to graph and compare tradeable digital assets, give the ability to access and parse historical trading records, plotting trends, and patterns, and monitoring open-source software developments.
VESPUCCI seeks to bring you confident and comprehensive market-relevant data by aggregating the information currently scattered throughout many different blockchains, websites, chat rooms, and exchanges.
VDEX: as I specified in the beginning.

Website: https://volentix.io/
White Paper: https://github.com/Volentix/documentation/blob/masteVDexWhitePaper-v0.1.3.pdf

Author: Arif Çakır
Bounty0x username: arifcakir13
submitted by bacaran to ICOAnalysis [link] [comments]

Mimblewimble in IoT—Implementing privacy and anonymity in INT Transactions

Mimblewimble in IoT—Implementing privacy and anonymity in INT Transactions

https://preview.redd.it/kyigcq4j5p331.png?width=1280&format=png&auto=webp&s=0584cd96378f51ead05b447397dcb0489995af4e

https://preview.redd.it/rfc3cw7q5p331.png?width=800&format=png&auto=webp&s=2b10b33defa0b354e0144745dd20c2f257812f29

The years of 2017 and ’18 were years focused on the topic of scaling. Coins forked and projects were hyped with this word as their sole mantra. What this debate brought us were solutions and showed us where we are right now satisfying the current need when paired with a plan for the future. What will be the focus of years to come will be anonymity and fungibility in mass adoption.
In the quickly evolving world of connected data, privacy is becoming a topic of immediate importance. As it stands, we trust our privacy to centralized corporations where safety is ensured by the strength of your passwords and how much effort an attacker dedicates to breaking them. As we grow into the new age of the Internet, where all things are connected, trustless and cryptographic privacy must be at the base of all that it rests upon. In this future, what is at risk is not just photographs and credit card numbers, it is everything you interact with and the data it collects.
If the goal is to do this in a decentralized and trustless network, the challenge will be finding solutions that have a range of applicability that equal the diversity of the ecosystem with the ability to match the scales predicted. Understanding this, INT has begun research into implementing two different privacy protocols into their network that conquer two of the major necessities of IoT: scalable private transactions and private smart contracts.

Mimblewimble

One of the privacy protocols INT is looking into is Mimblewimble. Mimblewimble is a fairly new and novel implementation of the same elements of Elliptic-Curve Cryptography that serves as the basis of most cryptocurrencies.

https://preview.redd.it/dsr6s6vt5p331.png?width=800&format=png&auto=webp&s=0249e76907c3c583e565edf19276e2afaa15ae08

In bitcoin-wizards IRC channel in August 2016, an anonymous user posted a Tor link to a whitepaper claiming “an idea for improving privacy in bitcoin.” What followed was a blockchain proposal that uses a transaction construction radically different than anything seen today creating one of the most elegant uses of elliptic curve cryptography seen to date.
While the whitepaper posted was enough to lay out the ideas and reasoning to support the theory, it contained no explicit mathematics or security analysis. Andrew Poelstra, a mathematician and the Director of Research at Blockstream, immediately began analyzing its merits and over the next two months, created a detailed whitepaper [Poel16] outlining the cryptography, fundamental theorems, and protocol involved in creating a standalone blockchain.
What it sets out to do as a protocol is to wholly conceal the values in transactions and eliminate the need for addresses while simultaneously solving the scaling issue.

Confidential Transactions

Let’s say you want to hide the amount that you are sending. One great way to hide information that is well known and quick: hashing! Hashing allows you to deterministically produce a random string of constant length regardless of the size of the input, that is impossible to reverse. We could then hash the amount and send that in the transaction.

X = SHA256(amount)
or
4A44DC15364204A80FE80E9039455CC1608281820FE2B24F1E5233ADE6AF1DD5 = SHA256(10)

But since hashing is deterministic, all someone would have to do would be to catalog all the hashes for all possible amounts and the whole purpose for doing so in the first place would be nullified. So instead of just hashing the amount, lets first multiply this amount by a private blinding factor*.* If kept private, there is no way of knowing the amount inside the hash.

X = SHA256(blinding factor * amount)

This is called a commitment, you are committing to a value without revealing it and in a way that it cannot be changed without changing the resultant value of the commitment.
But how then would a node validate a transaction using this commitment scheme? At the very least, we need to prove that you satisfy two conditions; one, you have enough coins, and two, you are not creating coins in the process. The way most protocols validate this is by consuming a previous input transaction (or multiple) and in the process, creating an output that does not exceed the sum of the inputs. If we hash the values and have no way validate this condition, one could create coins out of thin air.

input(commit(bf,10), Alice) -> output(commit(bf,9), BOB), outputchange(commit(bf,5), Alice)
Or
input(4A44DC15364204A80FE80E9039455CC1608281820FE2B24F1E5233ADE6AF1DD5, Alice) ->
output(19581E27DE7CED00FF1CE50B2047E7A567C76B1CBAEBABE5EF03F7C3017BB5B7, Bob)
output(EF2D127DE37B942BAAD06145E54B0C619A1F22327B2EBBCFBEC78F5564AFE39D, Alice)

As shown above, the later hashed values look just as valid as anything else and result in Alice creating 4 coins and receiving them as change in her transaction. In any transaction, the sum of the inputs must equal the sum of the outputs. We need some way of doing mathematics on these hashed values to be able to prove:

commit(bf1,x) = commit(bf2,y1) + commit(bf3,y2)

which, if it is a valid transaction would be:

commit(bf1,x) - commit(bf2+bf3,y1+y2) = commit(bf1-(bf2+bf3),0)

Or just a commit of the leftover blinding factors.

By the virtue of hashing algorithms, this isn’t possible. To verify this we would have to make all blinding factors and amounts public. But in doing so, nothing is private. How then can we make a valued public that is made with a private-value in such a way that you cannot reverse engineer the private value and still validate it satisfies some condition? It sounds a bit like public and private key cryptography…
What we learned in our primer on Elliptic-Curve Cryptography was that by using an elliptic curve to define our number space, we can use a point on the curve, G, and multiply it by any number, x, and what you get is another valid point, P, on the same curve. This calculation is quick but in taking the resultant point and the publically known generator point G, it is practically impossible to figure out what multiplier was used. This way we can use the point P as the public key and the number x as the private key. Interestingly, they also have the curious property of being additive and communicative.
If you take point P which is xG and add point Q to it which is yG, its resulting point, W = P + Q, is equal to creating a new point with the combined numbers x+y. So:
https://preview.redd.it/yv0knclr6p331.png?width=800&format=png&auto=webp&s=9a3abccdc164e615651147141736356013e4b829
This property, homomorphism, allows us to do math with numbers we do not know.
So if instead of using the raw amount and blinding factor in our commit, we use them each multiplied by a known generator point on an elliptic curve. Our commit can now be defined as:
https://preview.redd.it/aas2wm0u6p331.png?width=800&format=png&auto=webp&s=c3ebb5728f755f30e878ce5f1885397f6667d4f3
This is called a Pedersen Commitment and serves as the core of all Confidential Transactions.
Let’s call the blinding factors r, and the amounts v, and use H and G as generator points on the same elliptic curve (without going deep into Schnorr signatures, we will just accept that we have to use two different points for the blinding factor and value commits for validation purposes**). Applying this to our previous commitments:
https://preview.redd.it/zf246t8z6p331.png?width=800&format=png&auto=webp&s=17e2e155c59002f05f38ccb27082f79a5dd98a1f
and using the communicative properties:
https://preview.redd.it/km4fuf017p331.png?width=800&format=png&auto=webp&s=13541d62ec3f6e5728388b7a8d995c3829364a42
which for a valid transaction, this would equal:
with ri, vi being the values for the input, ro,vo being the values for the output and rco, vco being the values for the change output.

This resultant difference is just a commit to the excess blinding factor, also called a commitment-to-zero:
https://preview.redd.it/tqnwao667p331.png?width=800&format=png&auto=webp&s=9da5ecab5c670024f171a441e0d2477cf8f41a56
You can see that in any case where the blinding factors were selected randomly, the commit-to-zero will be non-zero and in fact, is still a valid point on the elliptic curve with a public key,
https://preview.redd.it/19ry9i297p331.png?width=800&format=png&auto=webp&s=4fb6628a01dc784816e1aea43cc0f5cfb025af52
And private key being the difference of the blinding factors.
So, if the sum of the inputs minus the sum of the outputs produces a valid public key on the curve, you know that the values have balanced to zero and no coins were created. If the resultant difference is not of the form
https://preview.redd.it/71mpdobb7p331.png?width=800&format=png&auto=webp&s=143d28da48d40208d5ef338444b3c7edea1fab9c
for some excess blinding factor, it would not be a valid public key on the curve, and we would know that it is not a balanced transaction. To prove this, the transaction is then signed with this public key to prove the transaction is balanced and that all blinding factors are known, and in the process, no information about the transaction have been revealed (the by step details of the signature process can be read in [Arvan19]).
All the above work assumed the numbers were positive. One could create just as valid of a balanced transaction with negative numbers, allowing users to create new coins with every transaction. Called Range Proofs, each transaction must be accompanied by a zero-knowledge argument of knowledge to prove that a private committed value lies within a predetermined range of values. Mimblewimble, as well as Monero, use BulletProofs which is a new way of calculating the proof which cuts down the size of the transaction by 80–90%.

*Average sizes of transactions seen in current networks or by assuming 2 input 2.5 output average tx size for MW

Up to this point, the protocol described is more-or-less identical between Mimblewimble and Monero. The point of deviation is how transactions are signed.
In Monero, there are two sets of keys/addresses, the spend keys, and the view keys. The spend key is used to generate and sign transactions, while the view key is used to “receive” transactions. Transactions are signed with what is called a Ring Signature which is derived from the output being spent, proving that one key out of the group of keys possesses the spend key. This is done by creating a combined Schnorr signature with your private key and a mix of decoy signers from the public keys of previous transactions. These decoy signers are all mathematically equally valid which results in an inability to determine which one is the real signer. Being that Monero uses Pedersen Commitments shown above, the addresses are never publically visible but are just used for the claiming, signing of transactions and generating blinding factors.
Mimblewimble, on the other hand, does not use addresses of any type. Yes. That’s right, no addresses. This is the true brilliance of the protocol. What Jedusor proved was that the blinding factors within the Pedersen commit and the commit-to-zero can be used as single-use public/private key pairs to create and sign transactions.
All address based protocols using elliptic-curve cryptography generate public-private key pairs in essentially the same way. By multiplying a very large random number (k_priv) by a point (G) on an elliptic curve, the result (K_pub) is another valid point on the same curve.
https://preview.redd.it/pt2xr33i7p331.png?width=800&format=png&auto=webp&s=1785cebcc842cab19b3987d848b2029032ae1195
This serves as the core of all address generation. Does that look familiar?
Remember this commit from above:
https://preview.redd.it/w9ooxudk7p331.png?width=800&format=png&auto=webp&s=d94ad3ac103352aa4c9653934d61cccc25a6bf8f
Each blinding factor multiplied by generator point G (in red) is exactly that! r•G is the public key with private key r! So instead of using addresses, we can use these blinding factors as proof we own the inputs and outputs by using these values to build the signature.
This seemingly minor change removes the linkability of addresses and the need for a scriptSig process to check for signature validity, which greatly simplifies the structure and size of Confidential Transactions. Of course, this means (at this time) that the transaction process requires interaction between parties to create signatures.

CoinJoin

Even though all addresses and amounts are now hidden, there is still some information that can be gathered from the transactions. In the above transaction format, it is still clear which outputs are consumed and what comes out of the transaction. This “transaction graph” can reveal information about the owners of the blinding factors and build a picture of the user based on seen transaction activity. In order to further hide and condense information, Mimblewimble implements an idea from Greg Maxwell called CoinJoin [Max13] which was originally developed for use in Bitcoin. CoinJoin is a trustless method for combining multiple inputs and outputs from multiple transactions, joining them into a single transaction. What this does is a mask that sender paid which recipient. To accomplish this in Bitcoin, users or wallets must interact to join transactions of like amounts so you cannot distinguish one from the other. If you were able to combine signatures without sharing private keys, you could create a combined signature for many transactions (like ring signatures) and not be bound by needing like amounts.

In this CoinJoin tx, 3 addresses have 4 outputs with no way of correlating who sent what
In Mimblewimble, doing the balance calculation for one transaction or many transactions still works out to a valid commit-to-zero. All we would need to do is to create a combined signature for the combined transaction. Mimblewimble is innately enabled to construct these combined signatures with the commit of Schnorr challenge transaction construction. Using “one-way aggregate signatures” (OWAS), nodes can combine transactions, while creating the block, into a single transaction with one aggregate signature. Using this, Mimblewimble joins all transactions at the block level, effectively creating each block as one big transaction of all inputs consumed and all outputs created. This simultaneously blurs the transaction graph and has the power to remove in-between transactions that were spent during the block, cutting down the total size of blocks and the size of the blockchain.

Cut-through

We can take this one step further. To validate this fully “joined” block, the node would sum all of the output commitments together, then subtract all the input commitments and validate that the result is a valid commit-to-zero. What is stopping us from only joining the transactions within a block? We could theoretically combine two blocks, removing any transactions that are created and spent in those blocks, and the result again is a valid transaction of just unspent commitments and nothing else. We could then do this all the way back to the genesis block, reducing the whole blockchain to just a state of unspent commitments. This is called Cut-through. When doing this, we don’t have any need to retain the range proofs of spent outputs, they have been verified and can be discarded. This lends itself to a massive reduction in blockchain growth, reducing growth from O*(number of txs)* to O*(number of unspent outputs)*.
To illustrate the impact of this, let’s imagine if Mimblewimble was implemented in the Bitcoin network from the beginning, with the network at block 576,000, the blockchain is about 210 GB with 413,675,000 total transactions and 55,400,000 total unspent outputs. In Mimblewimble, transaction outputs are about 5 kB (including range proof ~5 kB and Pedersen commit ~33 bytes), transaction inputs are about 32 bytes and transaction proof are about 105 bytes (commit-to-zero and signature), block headers are about 250 bytes (Merkle proof and PoW) and non-confidential transactions are negligible. This sums up to a staggering 5.3 TB for a full sync blockchain of all information, with “only” 279 GB of that being the UTXOs. When we cut-through, we don’t want to lose all the history of transactions, so we retain the proofs for all transactions as well as the UTXO set and all block headers. This reduces the blockchain to 322 GB, a 94% reduction in size. The result is basically a total consensus state of only that which has not been spent with a full proof history, greatly reducing the amount of sync time for new nodes.
If Bulletproofs are implemented, the range proof is reduced from over 5kB to less than 1 kB, dropping the UTXO set in the above example from 279 GB to 57 GB.

*Based on the assumptions and calculations above.

There is also an interesting implication in PoS blockchains with explicit finality. Once finality has been obtained, or at some arbitrary blockchain depth beyond it, there is no longer the need to retain range proofs. Those transactions have been validated, the consensus state has been built upon it and they make up the vast majority of the blockchain size. If we say in this example that finality happens at 100 blocks deep, and assume that 10% of the UTXO set is pre-finality, this would reduce the blockchain size by another 250 GB, resulting in a full sync weight of 73 GB, a 98.6% reduction (even down 65% from its current state). Imagine this. A 73 GB blockchain for 10 years of fully anonymous Bitcoin transactions, and one third the current blockchain size.
It’s important to note that cut-through has no impact on privacy or security. Each node may choose whether or not to store the entire chain without performing any cut-through with the only cost being increased disk storage requirements. Cut-through is purely a scalability feature resulting in Mimblewimble based blockchains being on average three times smaller than Bitcoin and fifteen times smaller than Monero (even with the recent implementation of Bulletproofs).

What does this mean for INT and IoT?

Transactions within an IoT network require speed, scaling to tremendous volumes, adapting to a variety of uses and devices with the ability to keep sensitive information private. Up till now, IoT networks have focused solely on scaling, creating networks that can transact with tremendous volume with varying degrees of decentralization and no focus on privacy. Without privacy, these networks will just make those who use it targets who feed their attackers the ammunition.
Mimblewimble’s revolutionary use of elliptic-curve cryptography brings us a privacy protocol using Pedersen commitments for fully confidential transactions and in the process, removes the dependence on addresses and private keys in the way we are used to them. This transaction framework combined with Bulletproofs brings lightweight privacy and anonymity on par with Monero, in a blockchain that is 15 times smaller, utilizing full cut-through. This provides the solution to private transactions that fit the scalability requirements of the INT network.
The Mimblewimble protocol has been implemented in two different live networks, Grin and Beam. Both are purely transactional networks, focused on the private and anonymous transfer of value. Grin has taken a Bitcoin-like approach with community-funded development, no pre-mine or founders reward while Beam has the mindset of a startup, with VC funding and a large emphasis on a user-friendly experience.
INT, on the other hand, is researching implementing this protocol either on the main chain, creating all INT asset transfer private or as an optional and add-on subchain, allowing users to transfer their INT from non-private chain to the private chain, or vice versa, at will.

Where it falls short?

What makes this protocol revolutionary is the same thing that limits it. Almost all protocols, like Bitcoin, Ethereum, etc., use a basic scripting language with a function calls out in the actual transaction data that tells the verifier what script to use to validate it. In the simplest case, the data provided with the input calls “scriptSig” and provides two pieces of data, the signature that matches the transaction and the public key that proves you own the private key that created it. The output scripts use this provided data with the logic passed with it, to show the validator how to prove they are allowed to spend it. Using the public key provided, the validator then hashes it, checks that it matches the hashed public key in the output, if it does, it then checks to make sure the signature provided matches the input signature.
https://preview.redd.it/5u6m1eiv7p331.png?width=1200&format=png&auto=webp&s=3729eb12037107ae744d15cea9f9bc1e18a3c719
This verification protocol allows some limited scripting ability in being able to tell validators what to do with the data provided. The Bitcoin network can be updated with new functions allowing it to adapt to new processes or data. Using this, the Bitcoin protocol can verify multiple signatures, lock transactions for a defined timespan and do more complex things like lock bitcoin in an account until some outside action is taken.
In order to achieve more widely applicable public smart contracts like those in Ethereum, they need to be provided data in a non-shielded way or create shielded proofs that prove you satisfy the smart contract conditions.
In Mimblewimble, as a consequence of using the blinding factors as the key pairs, greatly simplifying the signature verification process, there are no normal scripting opportunities in the base protocol. What is recorded on the blockchain is just:

https://preview.redd.it/dwhiuc8y7p331.png?width=1200&format=png&auto=webp&s=69ea0a7797bc94a9766a4b31a639666bf9f1ebc4
  • Inputs used — which are old commits consumed
  • New outputs — which are new commits to publish
  • Transaction kernel — which contains the signature for the transaction with excess blinding factor, transaction fee, and lock_height.
And none of these items can be related to one another and contain no useful data to drive action.
There are some proposals for creative solutions to this problem by doing so-called scriptless-scripts†. By utilizing the properties of the Schnorr signatures used, you can achieve multisig transactions and more complex condition-based transactions like atomic cross-chain swaps and maybe even lightning network type state channels. Still, this is not enough complexity to fulfill all the needs of IoT smart contracts.
And on top of it all, implementing cut-through would remove transactions that might be smart contracts or rely on them.
So you can see in this design we can successfully hide values and ownership but only for a single dimensional data point, quantity. Doing anything more complex than transferring ownership of coin is beyond its capabilities. But the proof of ownership and commit-to-zero is really just a specific type of Zero-knowledge (ZK) proof. So, what if, instead of blinding a value we blind a proof?
Part 2 of this series will cover implementing private smart contracts with zkSNARKs.

References and Notes

https://github.com/ignopeverell/grin/blob/mastedoc/intro.md
https://github.com/mimblewimble/grin/blob/mastedoc/pow/pow.md
https://github.com/mimblewimble/grin/wiki/Grin-and-MimbleWimble-vs-ZCash
https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=30579
[poel16] http://diyhpl.us/~bryan/papers2/bitcoin/mimblewimble-andytoshi-INCOMPLETE-DRAFT-2016-10-06-001.pdf
** In order to prove that v=0 and therefore the commit to zero, in fact, has no Hcomponent without revealing r, we must use Schnorr protocol:
prover generates random integer n, computes and sends point 𝑇←n𝐻
verifier generates and sends random integer 𝑖
prover computes and sends integer 𝑠←𝑖𝑏+n modq, where q is the (public) order of the curve
verifier knowing point r𝐻 computes point 𝑖(r𝐻), then point 𝑖(r𝐻)+𝑇; computes point 𝑠𝐻; and ensures 𝑖(r𝐻)+𝑇=𝑠𝐻.
[Arvan19] https://medium.com/@brandonarvanaghi/grin-transactions-explained-step-by-step-fdceb905a853
[Bulletproofs] https://eprint.iacr.org/2017/1066.pdf
[Max13] https://bitcointalk.org/?topic=279249
[MaxCT]https://people.xiph.org/~greg/confidential_values.txt
[Back13]https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=305791.0
http://diyhpl.us/wiki/transcripts/grincon/2019/scriptless-scripts-with-mimblewimble/
https://tlu.tarilabs.com/cryptography/scriptless-scripts/introduction-to-scriptless-scripts.html#list-of-scriptless-scripts
http://diyhpl.us/~bryan/papers2/bitcoin/2017-03-mit-bitcoin-expo-andytoshi-mimblewmble-scriptless-scripts.pdf
submitted by INTCHAIN to INT_Chain [link] [comments]

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