Cosmos, a highly anticipated blockchain, itself designed to improve interoperability between multiple blockchains, has officially released live software.
With the exploitation of its first block at 23:00 UTC, the project launched Cosmos Hub, the first in a series of game validation block chains to be created in the Cosmos ecosystem.
At the present time, network users will not be able to trade chips between strings of blocks or connect to the Cosmos Hub network with existing blockchain networks until that time. that the validators officially vote for the activation of the protocol called IBC (Inter-Blockchain Communication).
The first phase of the launch of the Cosmos network takes place after nearly three years of planning and development. Having launched the blockchain interoperability platform concept in the summer of 2016, Cosmos then collected more than 16 million US dollars in an initial offer of coins ( ICO) in 2017.
Since then, Tendermint Inc. – a for-profit entity behind the core technology of the Cosmos Network – has released preliminary products for developers.
S addressing CoinDesk, Zaki Manian, director of Tendermint Inc, explained:
"We want to move the blockchain development cycle from idea to implementation, from a few years to several months. That's how we try to transform the blockchain space. "
As such, Manian said that the Cosmos Software Development Kit (SDK), which debuted in February 2018, is already being used by major cryptographic companies, such as the Binance Exchange.
In addition, Tendermint Core – the network and consensus mechanism underlying the Cosmos Hub – is another essential tool that, according to Manian, will help "fundamentally remove the barriers to innovation" in space and "create an entirely new financing system ".
"Of all these building blocks, [you’ll be able to compose] an open financial system … that works at scale and can be composed of individual and specialized channels performing different tasks, "said Manian.
Today's launch was an important step towards this expanded and expansive vision – a breakthrough that Manian believes will "take years to fully manifest." The main goal of the launch of Cosmos Hub is to establish a wider ecosystem of validators, entities leading tokens on the network. , while the Manian team continues to work to create inter-linked capabilities.
"In order to realize this vision of connecting block chains, it is necessary to set up a set of operators who have the skin of the game to coordinate this network of block chains," said Manian.
Normally, in a work verification system similar to Bitcoin or Ethereum, these validators are miners who compete for bulk rewards by operating computer servers and spending large amounts of electricity.
Validators in a payment system, on the other hand, are "selected" by the system on the basis of a separate metric of implicit chips to participate in block creation and transaction completion.
"Proof of participation, costs and benefits [of the system] are internal, "said Manian. "So we had to develop a very sophisticated system of rewards distribution, distribution of the speculator tax system, punishment of people for malicious behavior, punishment of people who go offline."
"All of this has to be internal to the system and that's why proof of participation is as important a technical feat as proof of work."
And although Cosmos participants have successfully tested this validation system with about 200 computer servers called nodes in a former fictional environment called Game of Stakes, participants had never really put their money into play before.
"[Today’s launch] It's about releasing these real economic incentives and having a risk-value for the first time, and then leaving that set of economic incentives that we've designed [validators] are, "said Manian.
According to Manian, this is a crucial fundamental step on which the developers of Cosmos are cautious.
He told CoinDesk: "Build interoperability. Establishment of mechanisms allowing workers to keep bitcoin or ether or ERC-20 assets and to display synthetic versions [the Cosmos] environment. If you do not know who your validators are, this is not possible. "
At the moment, Cosmos users are not allowed to transfer their holdings in the native network currency, the ATOM tokens, for the moment.
ATOM chips are intended to serve as a "guarantee that people are in danger of losing [validators] in the system "according to Manian, these tokens will be strictly used as" mechanism of selection of the membership of the system ".
But once the system and the validator group are deemed to be in a stable state, the token holders will vote on the moment to enable live ATOM transfers.
Subsequently, a secondary vote will be organized to connect new blockchains, also known as "zones", to the Cosmos hub and start exchanging heterogeneous crypto-currencies and non-fungible tokens (NFTs).
"In these early days, we can expect to have problems, updates and bugs," warned the InterChain Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to the development of the Cosmos network, in an article on his blog:
"Existing tools require advanced technical skills and involve risks that are beyond the control of the Interchain Foundation and / or the Tendermint team. … please be extremely careful!
Staking as a service
Manian told CoinDesk that there are 70 validators at the launch of Cosmos Hub who are committed to securing the network. Some of these validators focus on staking chips as a service to larger ATOM holders.
In a sense, it is almost a question of renting cryptographic assets to generate revenue and can encourage new users to wade into the cosmos ecosystem.
Shayne Coplan, founder of the Union Marketplace for such service providers, whose launch is scheduled for April, told CoinDesk that over the next few months, an "inter-network reputation layer" would emerge for these validators.
"If you look at these different betting service providers, many of them operate on multiple networks at once," Coplan said, referring to other staking networks such as Tezos and the Tendermint-based network. "From now on, with Cosmos as another very valuable channel with picketing and delegation, it will put a major focus on the inter-network reputation of validators."
The rewards earned by these grades and their holders are generally obtained with the ATOM token, but can also be in the future encapsulated form of alternative crypto-currencies such as Bitcoin and Ether.
While Union Marketplace has quietly collected about 230 validators on all of its staking networks at the time of its launch, Mr. Coplan hopes that the launch of Cosmos will in particular encourage more players to experiment with this type of service.
"There are a huge number of people interested in these types of betting services, from individual investors to investment funds," said Hendrik Hofstadt, co-founder of the validation start-up, Certus One, at CoinDesk. "Some larger funds contacted us."
In addition, Certus One's Telegram group for retail ATOM users has recruited 60 members within 24 hours of opening, added Hofstadt.
For his part, Joe Pindar, co-founder of the block3 validator startup, told CoinDesk that this type of ecosystem paves the way for a new kind of investment opportunity.
Speaking about how Cosmos regularly rewards policymakers, compared to investing in income, Pindar added:
"In reality, you start to generate revenue or revenue through these rewards and to appreciate more and more ATOM, which, in my opinion, is a different investment model and I'm looking forward to to see how that goes. "
Leigh Cuen contributed to the report.
Earth from space via Shutterstock