A blockchain platform for visionaries and innovators, Cardano has the technologies and tools to enact positive global change. The decentralized community that built this blockchain protocol, comprised of engineers, scientists, and pacesetters, joined efforts to rise to the challenge of igniting this change.
Holders of ADA, Cardano’s token, also have a stake in the platform’s network which basically means they are contributing to the security and decentralization of the network (and for that they get delegation rewards).
To earn rewards, holders can delegate their ADA to a stake pool. In the near future (within a month from writing), we should have the ability to earn regards by voting. This is truly amazing as not only do we as a community get to participate in the direction and improvement of the platform, but we get rewarded for that as well. Holders will be able to use ADA for various different services and applications on the platform in the future, and these will be enabled by Goguen which is the smarts contracts functionality coming very soon..
Many talk about how safe cryptocurrencies are because they are transparent, immune to inflation, etc. However, those broaching the subject of environmental sustainability are markedly fewer. Miners use computing power quite extensively in proof of work protocols. In fact, this power consumption averages 17 million kWh a day.
Ouroboros: The Most Environmentally Sustainable Blockchain Protocol
Enter Ouroboros, a proof of stake protocol that provides the same security guarantees as a proof of work protocol but at a negligible energy cost. The first peer-reviewed, research-based blockchain protocol in the world is provably secure. It applies combinatorics, cryptography, and mathematical game theory to ensure performance, sustainability, and integrity of all related distributed networks.
The protocol combines mathematically-validated mechanisms and unique technology, which integrate economic philosophy and behavioral psychology to guarantee the sustainability and security of the blockchain relying on the protocol. As a result, Ouroboros can boast tried and true security features and guarantees. These can facilitate the proliferation of world networks with practically non-existent energy requirements, of which Cardano is the first.
Infinity is at the core of Ouroboros, which becomes important when the mission of the platform is to bring economic identity to billions who don’t have it. It is important to make it possible for global networks to grow ethically, sustainably, and preserve value while augmenting and increasing it. Equally as important is that the transactional fees do not grow expensive as a result of volume as you see with the current issues that Ethereum faces. This is exactly what Ouroboros does. Simply put, Ouroboros is the most scalable, most secure, and most energy-efficient blockchain protocol to have ever existed. Soon when Hydra is implemented, we will have unlimited transactions per second. Basically, Hydra will allow transactions to process in parallel by using “Heads”. Each head can process 1000 transactions per second so if we scale up to 1000 heads we would have 1 million TPS. This rivals existing dominant global payment systems and positions Cardano as a legitimate player in terms of tech.
If you want to take a deep dive on the implementations of Ouroborus, the whitepapers are here:
The Essence of Cardano: Community
Decentralized Consensus and Governance
The community is what defines Cardano, and Individuals are encouraged to participate. While the recent summit in July 2020 had over 10,000 people attend online, the community is just getting going. For example, in July Shelley had not yet launched and now the community is playing a major role in producing blocks, securing the network, and getting rewarded for it. Further, the previously mentioned Voltaire involves the rewarding of community for participating in voting. The platform records votes immutably. This was ensured so users could decide on the platform’s future and its applications, including the use of its treasury funds. Perhaps even more significant for community involvement is the fact that the voting is based on WHO the treasury funds will go to- meaning, community is built around the creativity and innovation submitted in the proposals that we vote upon.
One can apply this advanced technology and model to practically any system or society. The platform is the harbinger of lasting change, bringing much-needed safety to all by doing away with middlemen and redistributing power. In addition, the Voltaire voting system can be easily used by Apps that are developed on the Cardano platform, a nice little added bonus for contributing development skills.
The Future of Cardano
Rewards and incentives became possible through Shelley, a historic hard fork Cardano underwent in the spring of 2020. Shelley delivered the start of delegation, the creation of stake pools, and the path to full network decentralization (platform will be 100% decentralized early 2021). The next historic step is Goguen, which makes it possible to build applications. When complete, Goguen will enable all users to launch and execute smart functional contracts on the platform’s network.
The creation of Plutus, a development language for smart contracts using Haskell, is a key milestone of Goguen. Plutus testing is already underway. Marlowe, a domain-specific, high-level financial contract language, will make Cardano accessible to even more users. It will allow economic and financial experts to create smart contracts without a technical background. For example, a financial engineer wants to structure a DeFi contract. Instead of coding it or hiring a team of developers, they could just use Marlowe to build the contract. Marlowe is built on Plutus, and the combination of the two will usher in a new era of smart contracts for enterprises, governments, and end users. For more information on developing in Plutus and Marlow, click here
Finally, Goguen will add a multi-currency ledger, allowing users to create new tokens that are supported natively. They will be able to create mutually interchangeable as well as non-interchangeable tokens, supporting the tokenization of all kinds of physical and digital assets and the creation of new cryptocurrencies on the Cardano platform. Easier integration of decentralized applications (DApps) and smart contracts using multiple cryptocurrencies is yet another feature of Goguen.