Blockchain is only half of ...
Immutable data itself is not as helpful as we thinkThe only reason that blockchain is innovative is because it takes data, distributes it, and uses unbiased code to make sure everyone plays by the same rules in keeping or changing that data. Immutable data storage — that’s it. Nobody can go back and say something was recorded when it wasn’t. The tokens, smart contracts, side-chains, lightning networks, automation, and hype, all stem from the “Trust by Computation” that makes recorded data immutable once it’s in a blockchain.So when we say that Blockchain is going to change industries, yes we’re right, but really immutable data itself is not as helpful as we think. While data storage in a blockchain is technically and mathematically trusted, there is still a significant obstacle in being able to actually use blockchain to innovate the many industries targeted.Primarily, what happens when you put the wrong information into an immutable record? Let’s not make the mistake of assuming that just because data is permanent, that it’s correct.An immutable ledger is not trustworthy if the data contributed to it is not reliable. What if, for example, you have permanently tattooed the wrong person’s name on your arm? It would actually better if the record was NOT immutable, so you could go back and change it when needed.The evolution of blockchain Smart Contracts opens new business opportunities by enforcing rules and automatically executing transactions when coded parameters are met. The parameters and the preset/agreed outcome are both stored immutably on the blockchain, waiting for a signal of its fulfillment to execute.A simple example would be the case where a Smart Contract is created to remit payment to a recipient when a particular action is done. Let’s say I’ll pay you 5 bitcoin to review this article. The Smart Contract would hold the parameter of “Review the article” and the outcome “pay 5 bitcoin”, and will automatically pay you the 5 bitcoin when you’ve reviewed my article. That means no more accounts payable/receivable processing — a huge potential cost saving for businesses!The ProblemWith just blockchain, Smart Contract parameters (and therefore payment) could execute erroneously, without parameters being met in the real world, i.e. you didn’t really review my article, just set up a bot to open the page and clap 4 times, but the smart contract would still pay you my 5 bitcoin. And because Blockchain is permanent and immutable, the invalid transfer of my 5 bitcoin would be irreversible.No sophisticated party [like myself] would take the kind of execution risk that exists today with blockchain. Many different bots can be created, or malicious actors in the real world with access to Keys or API’s, to attest to misinformation without proper systemic contestation, recourse or rectification.This raises a key question in the blockchain ecosystem: As Smart Contracts enforce predetermined outcomes, how can distributed consensus validate Contract settlement before it’s immutably posted to the blockchain?Given the nature and scale of the operations being executed, trustworthy inputs are crucial. The disconnect between real-world confirmation and Smart Contract validation is of primary importance for instituting daily and industrial applications of blockchain Smart Contracts.The other half (data input)To gain enterprise (and my) adoption of blockchain systems, they must be integrated with systems validating data input. While blockchain has great value, it still needs to be applied with the right systems and measures to make sure that its data is valid before being immutably recorded. As anyone working in IT can tell you, “dirty data is dangerous”. This has never been more true than in the case of Blockchain. For serious users to be able to trust Blockchain, they need a type of checks and balances for cases of misinformation or nefarious inputs, to ensure that Smart Contract inputs can be validated before being irreversibly recorded.In my case, before paying you my 5 bitcoin, I want the ability to contest settlement if necessary, and have it validated. Because the contract parameters contain a live, verifiable event, there are a large but finite number of actors that could validate (or contest) the event actually happening. Incentive mechanisms must be put in place for immediate and long-term effects ensuring the distributed participants can be trusted on a larger scale.The SolutionDigital [nonhuman] inputs like RFID or satellite feeds can help, although even these technologies are not tamper-proof. Human actors in expert networks that have financial and reputational stake can help, although people work in erratic ways at times. So, as with most real-world solutions, the real answer will likely be a combination of both.The team at iCash saw this opportunity and set out to create it.iCash proposes the Proof of Trust (PoT) protocol to allow distributed validation of Smart Contract inputs, to be able to ensure, and potentially insure, valid settlement.PoT works concurrently with any blockchain system as a mechanism for assessing, auditing and affirming data inputs to execute with distributed trust. The integration of iCash’s PoT in the technology stack of IoT data sharing bridges the critical gap left between real world inputs and blockchain’s immutable records.With a network of accountable participants acting as decentralized oracle inputs (Delegates), PoT uses an algorithm to create, monitor, and report reputational trustworthiness over time, along with financial stake on majority consensus. Delegates can be both digital and human inputs. Smart Contracts are broken down to binary logic and voted on for majority consensus before being executed on the blockchain. To reach validity probabilities of a near-zero chance of incorrectness, Users are given the ability to contest even the Consensus determination of the Delegates and raise the query to SuperDelegates who have proven perfect reputation by always inputting correct determinations.This development aims to support reliable institutional services within a decentralized framework, and take full advantage of the trust and efficiency that blockchain has the potential to avail. By adding a layer of Trust to the application layer of data input, further advances in blockchain scaling and IoT device integration can realize the future we envision for technological development.The next article will address the different types of existing distributed oracle solutions proposed in the marketplace, and why iCash is uniquely positioned to succeed.Now that you’ve read and reviewed my article, I can send you the 5 bitcoin — just need your private key :)Blockchain is only half of the solution was originally published in iCash io on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.
18. 11. 13
5 Key Takeaways from Devcon4
Here I will cover the highlights of my trip to Prague for the Devcon4 conference. This conference was a showcase for all major players involved in building blockchain technology.I started off the day with an interview with Sasha at BIG Crypto about iCash. We covered a variety of topics: his entertaining story on how he first heard about the iCash team while at Consensus Singapore, an in-depth look at the most prevalent trends in blockchain technology, and how iCash will scale it’s Proof Of Trust (PoT) protocol for dispute resolution.We’ll be providing a link to the full video clip as soon as it becomes available.At the end of the discussion, I was asked to predict the 5 most important discussion points gained from attending the conference. I will now share those points after an amazing week of being surrounded by, and learning, from the best of the best. It should also serve to give readers a better insight as to the goings-on within the Cryptocurrency and Blockchain communities:1. The Future of Privacy and Scalability: ZK StarksZK StarksThe most packed talk of the conference was the Starkware lecture about ZK Starks.In a room that typically fits 150, I sat/stood with over 300 people crammed in to the space, listening and getting the firsthand knowledge of the latest development in ZK Stark technology.Meeting Starkware CTO Oren KatzI learned that they have a partner program where Starkware actively helps projects design their protocol. Oren also asked me more about how iCash uses ZK Snark technology to build the privacy layer for smart contract contestations.Starks will be commonplace, and a scaling solution for Ethereum. Given the right partnership opportunity, we would not hesitate to build our tech robustly to be the best long term dominant solution.2. The need for Decentralized TrustCongress Center, Prague, Czech RepublicHandshake (HNS)I noticed a rising interest in Decentralized DNS. There seems to be a recurring theme that a secure network system should be built with proper first principles.In order to truly decentralized the internet, built from the ground up using first principles; trust must be established at all layers in the protocol stack starting with root.In the case of HNS, the root or backbone of their protocol is the Domain Name System.This idea has been around since the early days of Bitcoin. Handshake (HNS) is a relatively new project headed by Joseph Poon that has both raised significant funding - as well as donating generously to open source software foundations that have been around since the early days.I learned that it exists today as a fork of bitcoin with a different approach to mining:Handshake works seamlessly with the existing DNS system. The domain names of the top 100,000 websites on the internet are being set aside for their legitimate owners to claim on Handshake .Handshake PaperThe fundamental issue that Handshake is solving is that in order to trust any website, one must also trust the Certificate Authority that generated the TLS or SSL certificate that validated the authenticity of that particular website to the user’s browser.Ethereum Name ServiceEthereum Name Service (ENS) is the domain name service that gives an alphabetic character name to your Ethereum address or dApp. They announced that apart from the .eth domain, two other top-level domains (TLDs) are becoming available in the next weeks: “.xyz” and “.luxe” are purchasable via traditional DNS registrars.At the Congress Center in Prague, bright and early overlooking the 2nd floor.Origin ProtocolWe talked about a mechanism which enables smart contracts to allow interactions from reputable people. They have submitted a proposal for ERC725 tokens to allow for that trusted transfer.Origin Protocol Co-Founders Matt Liu and Josh Fraser.Day 1 Closing ThoughtsIn order to truly decentralized the internet from the ground up using first principles, trust must be established at all layers in the protocol stack starting with root.Therefore, for Smart Contracts to be fully trusted and decentralized, they too must have a protocol to secure incoming and outgoing data (parameters, execution logic) such that the authenticity or validity can be proved in a deterministic manner. In light of this, there exists a deterministic way to contest and reclaim value that otherwise would have been lost.A blockchain system must properly decentralize trust in all layers in the protocol3. Vitalik Buterin TalkDevcon4 Day 2, the future of EthereumVitalik talked Ethereum 2.0 (Serenity), and the centerpiece of his talk was about a blockchain system called the “beacon chain”. The beacon chain is the “main chain” of the PoS system.Devcon4 Day 2, 10:45 am, main stageThe beacon chain’s 3 core functions serve to:Store and maintain the set of active, queued, and slashed validatorsProcess crosslinksProcess its own block-by-block consensus, as well as the finality gadget.My notes for the talk:Vitailk Buterin SpeechWhat this means for iCash is that we are on the right track. I’m getting confirmations from multiple sources, such as my in person meeting with Parity VP of Product, that Beacon chains and relay chains are the future of scalability in the near term.The Smart Contracts of the future will be more likely written eWASM over Solidity.eWasm is based off of WebAssembly(Wasm), a new Assembly standard being built for the web. The main advantage of using Wasm is performance (both speed and size).Wasm is a kin to LLVM IR and Low Level Instruction Set Architectures (ISAs). It is an defined as an Abstract Syntax Tree (AST) which has a textual representation using s-expressions. As an AST it has some higher level semantics than pure hardware ISAs. Including functions and basic flow control. Wasm is not finished a specification and still in flux. This EIP suggest using a subset of wasm to allow us to tailor the semantics to Ethereum. This spec is designed so that the minimum amount of changes a wasm VM would need to be implemented. This should make existing implementations of wasm easy to integrate and provide a way to run Ethereum-flavored wasm on an unmodified wasm VM.Source: EIP-140The EIP first came out in May, since then it has been additionally pushed forward by Dr. Gavin Wood (Ethereum cofounder) and his team at Parity. eWASM will make Smart Contract development more secure, cheaper, faster to develop (being able to re-use existing libraries that have been around for 30 years), and most importantly, will improve runtime performance of the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM).4. CTO Investor DinnerI participated in an exclusive dinner for blockchain CTOs during Devcon 4.There I led a discussion on iCash’s Proof of Trust Protocol, dispute arbitration and its importance in the ecosystem, how Security Tokens bring extreme value to user-based, top-down platforms built on blockchain, securities in blockchain, and more.What went downThis event brought together the best and brightest of the space, to enjoy a night away from the hectic schedules of Devcon 4 attendees. It created an intimate setting where after every conversation, a CTO could walk away feeling like they could freely express their ideas and learn from each other, without the daily pressures of business and competition.Devcon 4 CTO & Investor DinnerAttendee thoughtsFrom left to rightEugene Joo, CTO at Blockcrafters CapitalZane Witherspoon, CTO at Dispatch LabsIt was really great to discuss the idea of network liveliness with the VP of Eng of Algorand and technical leads of different investment firms~ Zane Witherspoon, CTO at Dispatch LabsMakoto Inoue, CTO at Ethereum Name Service (ENS) and Kickback center leftMesbah Sabur, Cofounder of Circularise center rightI talked with Makoto from ENS team and talked about its use case for IoT. The ENS team was interested in discussing my suggestion for IoT further since ENS team is concurrently looking for added use cases.I am planning to reach out to Nick Johnson to talk about this. Circularize CEO and I had very interesting conversation on implementation of blockchain to build circular economy, and he is looking for blockchain network to develop it. He might come to Korea next year in March where a future relationship can be nurtured.~ Hyungsuk Kang, Ethereum Foundation Research Scholar5. Adoption and PartnershipsAlgorand MeetupAlgorand is a first-of-its-kind technology that fulfills the promises of blockchain technology, through a platform that solves the “blockchain trilemma” — offering the decentralization, scalability and security necessary for both businesses and developers. They are often compared to Dfinity (a well-regarded decentralized and high throughput blockchain).Meeting with their Algorand founder Silvia and VP of Engineering Naveed discussing the technical details of their projectAlgorand sees themselves as a platform that can handle accounts and transactions as well as smart contracts. Their founder is an MIT professor who actually came up with the concept and methodology of their consensus 20 years ago. Algorand may be a public permission-less blockchain (that can be configured to be private permissioned) that can handle the scale and complexity that we require at iCash. We also agreed that projects like Algorand are always proactively looking for end use-case DApps and Protocols to be built on their platform.Currently, they are in the infrastructure phase. They need desktop wallets, mobile DApps, DEX’s, Centralized Exchanges. Currently their testnet supports sending (signing) and receiving Algorand native currency transactions. It also supports their model of non-binding provably fair staking method of block production.ConclusionThere will be ideas exchanged, and partnerships forged, that completely change the trajectory of the space as a whole. With many of the best and brightest attending this event, I’m grateful to celebrate and learn from this collection of amazing human beings as we move blockchain technology one step closer into the mainstream.5 Key Takeaways from Devcon4 was originally published in iCash io on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.
18. 11. 13
Ling Qing Meng at San Franc...
The first two weeks of October marked important events for the blockchain industry, with both the highly anticipated San Francisco Blockchain Week and Global Blockchain Forum. For iCash, this meant more opportunities to share our expertise and connect with important industry leaders.Global Blockchain ForumOn October 4th, our CTO Ling Qing Meng attended the Global Blockchain Forum in San Francisco, an event connecting movers and shakers of the blockchain industry. Topics ranged from blockchain adoption and infrastructure to ICOs vs IPOs.Ling was present as a VIP speaker, where he discussed the economic models of dispute resolution on the blockchain. The panel entitled ‘Tokenomics: The Business of Trust’, featured other prominent figures such as Li Jiang, Head of China at GSV Capital, Abhishek Punia, Investor at Draper Associates, Managing Partner at BlockTeam Ventures, Andrey Verbitsky, Token Economy Architect at ICO Box and Tyler Yasaka, Software Engineer at Origin Protocol. You can see the full panel below!Ling also had an interview with Newconomy, a news portal focused on fresh perspectives on the future of money, where he shared information on iCash’s Proof of Trust protocol and incentivization structure. Stay tuned for the upcoming article!ETH San FranciscoHeld from October 5th to 7th, ETH San Francisco was the kickoff event to San Francisco Blockchain Week. Gathering some of the world’s best developers and industry experts, the three day hackathon was a great opportunity for the iCash team to meet relevant players in blockchain and discuss the latest trends in the technology.Ling Qing Meng and the iCash team talking with Vitalik Buterin at ETH SFLing was present to deliver a step-by-step tutorial on how to use Zero Knowledge Proofs (ZKPs) to secure both voter identity on voter information on-chain. You can read more about it on our blog post here.The lecture was one of the highlights of the ETH SF Hackathon. Watch Ling’s full tech talk below:https://medium.com/media/77cb0def6aa84116c067577191efe353/hrefDon’t forget to follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Reddit and to join us on Telegram or Kakao.The iCash TeamLing Qing Meng at San Francisco Blockchain Events was originally published in iCash io on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.
18. 10. 19
Beware of iCash Copycats
Bitcoin Exchange Guide and other sites published articles identifying a trading bot that operates as a Ponzi scheme. Unfortunately, it shares our name. We do not endorse this activity, nor are we affiliated with it. We at iCash Ltd. (“iCash”) are in the business of validating smart contract settlements and do not partake in crypto trading algorithms. At iCash, we are developing a Proof-of-Trust protocol and only offer our tokens through regulatory compliant sales practices.Please note that iCash’s official site is this one. Do not visit any other sites claiming to be us! They are scams!Our team is formed by professionals with decades of experience. You can learn more about Will McDonough, our CEO and founder in our recent blog post. You can also learn about iCash, our team and advisors in the following video:https://medium.com/media/3a74915c4c64d7be263c6a26153e076f/hrefIf you have any concerns, please contact our Telegram admins below:@iCash_Nick@iCashAsiaSincerely,The iCash TeamBeware of iCash Copycats was originally published in iCash io on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.
18. 10. 11
iCash’s September Asia Trip
iCash has a full-time presence in Hong Kong, Seoul, and Tokyo, and our executives travel throughout the region at least every other month. On this month’s trip, the team made its way across 3 major cities over the span of 3 weeks; iCash met with friends, partners, advisors, participated in panels, attended Blockchain events, and hosted some notably successful Meetups of their own.Will McDonough, iCash Founder and CEO, speaking at World Blockchain MarvelsFirst stop: Seoul, South Korea. On September 19th, our CEO Will McDonough gave a keynote speech at World Blockchain Marvels, an event gathering around 100 of Seoul’s leading CEO’s and “Marvels” in the Blockchain industry. This fueled even more interest from our Seoul community supporters, and many conversations with new potential partners.Without pause, the team flew to Singapore the next day to attend Coindesk’s Consensus Singapore! Extending over a two-day period, the conference featured over 75 speakers discussing the present and future of all things Blockchain and Crypto. This gave Will and Jonathan Malveaux, iCash Co-Founder and President, the perfect opportunity to connect with key advisors, partners, and industry leaders. The conversations held alongside, before, and after the conference proved just as fruitful as connections made inside.(Left) Will with iCash advisor and founder of Beyond Blocks, Saber Aria. (Right) Will with Binance CEO, Changpeng Zhao.The next leg of iCash’s roadshow was in Tokyo, Japan, where the team held a panel discussion at the Tokyo FinTech Summit and co-hosted a Meetup with QUOINE, one of Asia’s leading fintech companies. Held at the prestigious 1OAK Tokyo, guests were able to meet the team and celebrate the launch of Liquid.com, Quoine’s exchange. (You can participate in the iCash Token pre-sale which is currently listed on the exchange! Register here to participate.) Tweeting from the event were renowned Japanese football player, Hidetetsu Nishimura from the Fujitsu Frontiers, Nye ‘the Crypto Guy’, and many other partners and friends.Kicking off the iCash x QUOINE/Liquid.com launch party.iCash came full circle on September 29th when Will and Jon flew back to Korea to meet iCash’s Korean advisors, including Richard Yun (COO of Coinplug and Metadium), Michael Cho (Board of Directors member of Kakao), Henry Chung (founder of Draper Athena), and Jonathan Lee (COO of Yello)! The next night, iCash hosted its own Blockchain Meetup in Seoul with over 100 attendees from the iCash community (notably one of the larger Meetups in the city). During the Meetup several of our advisors took the stage to share their excitement and why they support iCash.iCash has made Asia a cornerstone of its growth, with key advisors, partnerships, and investors throughout the region. The team is thankful for such a successful roadshow and looks forward to what is ahead. Stay tuned for more updates and participate on our pre-sale at sale.icash.io or on app.liquid.com/ico-market/ICASH.Will kicking off the Seoul MeetupiCash’s September Asia Trip was originally published in iCash io on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.
18. 10. 05
iCash Probability Modeling
The iCash Community are an astute bunch, and you’ve asked some highly informed questions about the probability modeling behind our Proof of Trust protocol.Our Whitepaper, website, and marketing materials, all give a brief overview of how iCash uses a validation layer to lower the possibility of an incorrect determination on a blockchain transaction from one in 20, to one in a billion. That first number represents an unacceptably high risk that no company and few individuals would take (outside of Las Vegas, at least). The second number is almost beyond the dreams of even the most conservative risk manager. It nearly strains credulity!And that’s a problem. Because the numbers are credible. Our experienced team of computer scientists, economists, mathematicians and bankers have worked it out.Proof Of Trust Layer 1Proof Trust Layer 2Many of you out there who are reading this — you’re just as smart as the people on our team. So we think it’s only fair that we open our probability modeling up for you to review and come to your own conclusions. It’s a full 10 pages of charts, graphs, definitions and formulas:iCash Probability ModelingiCash Probability Modeling was originally published in iCash io on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.
18. 09. 28
Beginner’s guide to Proof o...
Trust — it’s one of the promised attributes of the Blockchain. While most have proven useful to ensure trust between parties, not many have addressed the issue of trusting oracle inputs into a Smart Contract. With hopes of wider Blockchain adoption, trust is becoming an increasingly necessary component.Blockchain and Smart Contracts are fairly secure technologies to store and execute diverse information. An innate, immutable environment without any central authority or intermediary is regarded as the biggest advantage. But not enough attention is paid to the negative impact of incorrect or malicious data.What happens when a Smart Contract is executed based on manipulated, or faulty inputs and the result is forever recorded to the Blockchain?iCash’s Proof of Trust Protocol was born from that logical skepticism; to enable real-world inputs to be validated. After a party in the Smart Contract contests an outcome and requires adjudication, the PoT Protocol evaluates and pre-validates the information entered into Smart Contracts to safeguard transactions ranging from a few bitcoin to thousands of them.Here’s How the Proof-of-Trust Protocol WorksA layer, or stage, of the PoT protocol is added to a Smart Contract. Whenever data input is contested by one of the Smart Contract parties, a decentralized network of qualified participants validate the data before the execution of the contract. Those participants, called Delegates, could be a person, a group, or a company, with the relevant proven experience to provide validation.To ensure accountability, each Delegate must go through an agreed-upon KYC process. Once on-boarded, Delegates will be able to use a dedicated internal portal to set up open APIs for database query/responses like below. iCash admins may also use this portal to send notifications or inquiries to the Delegate community. With total anonymity to prevent collusion, Delegates stake their iCash tokens and reputation each time they take on contract adjudication.Delegates are asked to escrow iCash Tokens which are used as collateral in a familiar PoS fashion, but relative to the size of contract that they may adjudicate. For instance, a Delegate that escrowed 100 iCash Tokens when on-boarding may participate in validating a contract worth 1,000 iCash.What incentivizes the Delegates to take part in the majority consensus is the Reputation reward. Based on the result of voting for each Smart Contract query, a Delegate’s Reputation can either be retained or degraded. Fluctuating Reputation directly impacts financial reward and input capability for future contracts. For example, Delegate 1 in the case below will receive more rewards than others for maintaining the perfect Reputation.This algorithm also “punishes” a Delegate with the wrong input by lowering his/her reputation score, hence significantly reducing the rewards the Delegate receives. If a Delegate’s reputation score is below 75% then they cannot participate in any validation until certain time and tests have passed.SuperDelegates, on the other hand, are actors in the PoT network with impeccable reputation by always inputting consensus-driving Smart Contracts determinations with close to one hundred percent accuracy. SuperDelegates have reputations in the highest percentile and they maintain their rank by voting honestly consistently over time. To reach even lower chance of incorrectness, this additional layer would provide indelible majority consensus, and thus be considered valid.Delegate selection is random, which means it is exploit and collusion resistant. The specific Delegates that will execute the contract will be chosen by a combination of reputation, their escrowed stake, and the chronological order in which they entered. Optimized for gamification, the iCash Delegate selection is similar to the Uber model, in which Delegates are rewarded based on honest behavior.While many corporations have been searching for opportunities to utilize this new technology, there has been a risk of trust. Automated, immutable processes of Smart Contracts with possibility of loss cannot be trusted, or at least not until the data input is proven trustworthy.Collective intelligence to assure the validity of Smart Contracts — it’s the perfect solution.The iCash teamBeginner’s guide to Proof of Trust was originally published in iCash io on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.
18. 09. 27
Processes for Arbitration o...
The Importance of GovernanceGovernance is one of the unsung pillars of the blockchain. Along with the other core pillars such as scalability, privacy, security, and decentralization, some would say governance is the most important problem to solve. Governance pertains to a blockchain ecosystem, in which a near perfect process is in place that allows automation and a self-sufficient economy to survive. Many have come up with variants from the initial Proof of Work to Proof of Stake, Delegated Proof of Stake, Federated Byzantine Fault Tolerance, but we are at a stage where evolution is occurring and there has yet to be a winner.With the many pillars such as governance and decentralization that Blockchain Technology is comprised of, there is a shift from traditional structures to transact in new ways that previously required trust in a centralized entity. Blockchain solutions with the most efficient governance will be the most trusted, thus the most dominant and widely accepted.Blockchain Governance IssuesRecent issues around EOS have emphasized how challenging the governance issues may become. EOS was built on four pillars: flexibility, usability, governance, and scalability; of which, the governance pillar was tested foremost.Certain users fell victim to a phishing attack, they, in turn, sent private key information resulting in stolen funds. In response, the EOS Core Arbitration Forum (ECAF) alike to a centralized government body, directed block producers to not process these transactions without supplying logic behind such decisions. EOS attempted to resolve issues by offering to take back power from ECAF, furthering confusion.Processes for Arbitration on Smart ContractsThe blockchain community criticized the ECAF for overstepping their boundary on what they could enforce in the EOS ecosystem. Initially, they were only responsible for arbitrating on decisions guiding the direction of the EOS blockchain as a whole.Now, having the power vested in ECAF to vote on whether individual transactions may take place effectively goes against the basic decentralized decision-making process which blockchain was meant to address.Following this event, Dan Larimer proposed a revised draft of the EOS Constitution. He stated that arbitrators shall extend only into disputes regarding the intent of the code, as opposed to overseeing users’ assets.In a world where protocol-level dispute resolution is limited to fixing bugs in the code, how does one protect against fraud and theft of keys? The answer is to opt-in to a banking Ricardian contract which controls the tokens on behalf of their owners.Transfers within the Smart Contract are subject to dispute resolution where the contract-appointed arbitrators have the power to reverse transactions and freeze tokens. Any withdrawals from the banking Smart Contract would be subject to a 3-day delay after which it would not be reversible.Furthermore, he revised the EOS constitution to incorporate the following changes:If there is a dispute on the intent of the code, then intent shall be determined by a supermajority vote of elected producers or an arbiter mutually agreed to by the parties to the dispute and enacted by producers. A supermajority may, at their discretion, freeze a contract during an active dispute until such time as the code to fix the contract is available. The parties to the dispute must produce proposed replacement code. The producers may charge a fee and/or place other requirements on the parties to the dispute. A supermajority is defined as 2/3+1.The Impact of ArbitrationArbitration is a process of dispute resolution between two parties, led by an independent third party. The third party can be one or many arbitrators. The goal of arbitration is to obtain a fair resolution of the dispute without unnecessary costs or delays. Generally speaking, the dispute may arise in any situation. One common example is when business A has a written agreement with business B, they dictate the terms into the contract. When the contract needs to be enforced, the arbitration clause comes into play.As most people understand Smart Contracts being self-executing that the terms of the agreement are represented by lines of software code; in the advent of blockchain technology, we imagine permissionless Smart Contracts shall quickly replace traditional contracts. Discounting a few examples (e.g., contracts used for raising capital) for the vast majority of contracts, this has yet to come true.Hereinafter, to illustrate a few examples. A Services Agreement is a contract used for employers to set forth terms and conditions for vendors or contractors. It seems from a first glance that blockchain Smart Contracts would be a perfect use case for a decentralized Upwork. Using continuous integration, a bounty is placed on a company’s open source Github. When a developer successfully creates a pull request that passes all of the verification tests, that developer is paid out the bounty automatically by the continuous integration system. All of these events are verifiable on the blockchain — so why hasn’t it become a prevalent use case yet?At some point, human intervention is required in deciding whether certain terms have been satisfied for a subjective and just stance. For instance, our software service, even if the verification tests passed, the submitted code could still be of poor quality, runs slowly, or simply does the bare minimum in order to pass the tests. Successful service marketplaces such as Airbnb and Uber thrive on the fact that it is very simple to computationally verify whether a driver has driven from point A to point B or, whether a residence had a vacancy for guests. When verification is easy, quality of service can be standardized and the app becomes capable of solving problems on a global scale. When verification is challenging and without human’s discernment, self-executing contracts would still miss a crucial piece that renders them successful in the supposed decentralized world.iCash’s Proof of Trust (PoT) Protocol is an Automated Arbitration Mechanism that is Subjective in Nature and Objective in Function.iCash2–1There are countless amounts of contracts that require subjective human intervention. A Smart Contract for an insurance policy with a single input source in verifying whether an event (e.g., natural disaster) has occurred is one example which demands human intervention.A financial derivative contract requires an accountable party to give the closest floating point precision price for the underlying asset at an exact moment in time. Both of which are multi-billion dollar industries.At iCash, our vision is to bridge the gap between subjective and objective Smart Contracts using automated arbitration. iCash’s Proof of Trust (PoT) protocol arbitrates conflicts before events are verified and prior to being recorded on the immutable blockchain. This allows for contestation before settlements deemed irreversible.Who verifies these inputs? A network of Oracles being delegates that have a proven legitimacy. They are incentivized by the financial gain in verifying the Contract and held accountable via staked iCash tokens and in the KYC registration process. These delegates are ranked and tracked by an algorithm that ensures consistent performance of these delegates. This way, trust is distributed among trusted agents creating a happy medium in the decentralized world with a system of checks and balances without having the power be vested in ECAFOnce parameters are entered into a Smart Contract on the blockchain, 50 basis points (in iCash tokens) are placed into an escrow. If there is no contestation to the initial determination of the Smart Contract, then it enters into the blockchain; and, the funds in escrow are released back to appropriate parties.If the original Smart Contract determination is contested, the matter is elevated from the Smart Contract, and a full network call is incited. In this case, 25 basis points are paid to delegates. These delegates validate the data in a Boolean voting process (i.e., True/False, 1/0).If there is no agreement, a second layer of contestation would take place, wherein delegates with the highest trust score (called SuperDelegates) for a given Smart Contract domain will then vote again to reach consensus. If approved by these SuperDelegates, then the prior arbitration is overturned. The decision of the SuperDelegates is what’s ultimately recorded on the immutable ledger.Based on correctly voting, delegates are given a PoT score on their accuracy. The vision of the iCash team is to enable delegates in providing non-binary or continuous data entries and determinations with respect to probabilities. These determinations become automated, requiring minimal intervention, and offer scalability.Conclusion: Blockchain’s Governance Authority and Decentralization OutlookWe have seen that this key value of blockchain can be a double-edged sword. Both EOS and Ethereum have identified that it is of utmost importance for transactions to flow freely without a central authority. As Smart Contracts increase in complexity and prevalence, we will continue to witness this issue being tested. It is an issue of where one draws the line between having a secure user experience v.s. true decentralization.In June 2016, Ethereum’s governing body, the DAO was compromised and millions of ether were stolen from a Smart Contract. That smart contract was intended to operate a certain way; however, due to human intervention (quite literally) it was exploited and operated in a way that directly goes against the contract’s intended purpose. Like EOS, Ethereum’s core members made the decision to reverse the transactions of the stolen ether, and effectively overstep the system of checks and balances.During this process, the major decisions on governance shall be created, and many more prior decisions will likely be overturned. These situations will continue to occur as the blockchain community matures and properly defines the standards for governance. Through the process of clearly defining the factors for which each decision is judged on, we utilize prior decisions as precedents to assist in assessing future decisions. This is the start of a standardized process, meaning having a protocol for arbitration, where we make a decentralized arbitration offer consistent, transparent and impartial settlements. With reliable decentralized arbitration, we can then trust Smart Contracts to operate as intended. The Proof of Trust protocol is built so that blockchain governance can evolve to fully exemplify the fundamental values of the blockchain.In essence, iCash is able to protect users from nefarious data inputs having incorporated a layer of trust and assurance inter-operable across the Smart Contract blockchains. Confidence in the system is hence achieved, paving the way for widespread adoption.Author: Ling Meng, CTO iCashProcesses for Arbitration on Smart Contracts was originally published in iCash io on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.
18. 08. 20
Building Out from the Secur...
With all growth stories there are tales and times of struggle. Purity is beautiful, motivating, and timeless in its seductive allure. It also limits growth. The meteoric rise of Crypto and the Blockchain has, perhaps inevitably, produced simmering debate between growth and purity.We at ICash see both sides of the debate, and even internally, we have key players that lean in the two opposite directions. The siren song of a secure, immutable web, freeing folks to commerce, anonymous, rule-based engagement, and expanded access and transparency, is loud and sweet. Broadening and deepening this to include billions, presently underserved is a powerful draw as well. But, there is that trade-off between purity and reach?iCash is dedicated to building out the community. Our Proof of Trust protocol seeks to deliver speed and assurance of smart contract input accuracy. Why? Our experience, research, and advisory network have turned our eyes to a key and underexplored area. Distributed ledgers are potent, efficient and secure at recording and securing information. This has broken open a wide range of new possibility and opened access to billions.However, there remain real and pressing issues with what we are chiseling into the digital tablets. Before we make it indelible, let’s make sure we make sure it is correct. Solving for accuracy in inputs to ledgers and facilitating fast and low cost transactions brings diversity and scale to Crypto.Adding a layer of verification and authentication offers a major stride forward for the distributed ledger. There may be an increment of sacrificed purity. To absolutely minimize the loss of purity, we strove to use trust — not simply sanction — to build veracity of input and ability to appeal outcome. The trust layer means faster, further and greater use of distributed ledger. Yes, there is a touch of centralization in selecting criteria and voices to serve as assurance of accuracy and ability to appeal inputs. We think a simple, transparent and artful layer of trust building can largely preserve decentralization, while vastly increasing the community. Hence, Proof of Trust was born.Our CEO likes the turn of phrase, measure three times and cut once. Proof of trust is this philosophy in digital action. We have been building scoring and sorting capabilities to allow fast, inexpensive, and secure data. We have also begun to build. We would love to add you to the community. We may not have achieved purity, but we act with purpose.Building Out from the Secure Core was originally published in iCash io on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.
18. 05. 30
What is the Global Blockcha...
Despite Blockchain’s decentralized nature, there are several areas vying to be Blockchain hubs. Even though New York granted only the fifth Bitlicense in existence recently, the city is quickly becoming the leading global hotbed for Blockchain tech and commerce.Yet, there are other locales vying to be the next hub including Silicon Valley, Chicago, Austin, and Boulder. Blockchain, also known as Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT), is looking to set up shop elsewhere with Bermuda, Seoul, Hong Kong, Tokyo, as well as Estonia and Malta, all emerging as prominent contenders. It seems Blockchain technologies are more mainstream overseas than they are in North America.In order for the movement to legitimize itself in the eyes of institutions, it must have a settled and acceptable regulatory framework. The biggest problem market participants and potential entrants face are the seemingly ever-changing decisions regarding jurisdiction and enforcement, as well as different regulatory agencies producing diverging guidance. Here at iCash, we operate in multiple jurisdictions and presently work with 25 different law firms across the world. In close concert with these advisers, we constantly strive to adhere to regulations that are in flux.These regulatory decisions will have far-reaching network effects. Geographies with regulatory clarity and consistent guidance will see higher capital inflows and larger numbers of Blockchain businesses, largely because these jurisdictions are trying to solve a big sector issue. Market participants that are drawn to these locales involve everything from Blockchain users, exchanges, firms, along with hedge funds bringing innovation, employment, tax revenues and media attention. The question as to whether or not “Blockchain is going mainstream” is being answered every day in dollars and cents.We think going “mainstream” — both in terms of intention and applicability — are two different things. DLT’s applications, acceptance, and mainstream use are certainly gaining momentum, and this is a development we are at the forefront of.Blockchain topics now have an entire slot on the calendar as evidenced during New York Blockchain Week, evolving from singular events like Ethereal and Consensus 2018.Today it is no longer a question of “if”, but rather “when” Blockchain goes fully mainstream, and the answer is growing increasingly apparent. The more people living outside of our “Blockchain world” who can understand “What is Blockchain?” and “What is cryptocurrency?”, the greater the certainty we all have knowing that this movement will become widespread and embraced globally.To learn more about our Token Offering, visit us at iCash.ioWhat is the Global Blockchain Community? was originally published in iCash io on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.
18. 05. 25