The investment trend of the currency circle in 2020: the degrading process of the public chain

Summary of this article

1. Tezos status and problems 2. Cosmos status and problems 3. Ethereum status and advantages 4. Public chain degrading process

Tezos status and issues

The Tezos 007 agreement will be proposed this summer and activated in the fall. The contents of the agreement include: integration of Sapling's privacy transaction function, state-baked account, environment upgrade, security randomness, governance, meta-transaction and Michelson. Cyrptium Labs, as the developer and one of the main bakers of Tezos, wrote two articles about the zero-knowledge technology Supersonic SNARK. This anonymous technology will be used for Tezos' next protocol upgrade.

The privacy track led by zk zero-knowledge technology may be the hotspot this year. From last month, the number of Zcash anonymous transactions doubled may be able to spy on one or two. Including Ethereum's Layer2 scheme zk-Rollup, Zcash's Layer2 scheme zk-channel on Bitcoin, Ethereum's ecological privacy project Aztec's ZK ^ 2 Rollup, Coda's zk-SNARK technology, MatterLabs' zk-sync, and Tezos Supersonic SNARK.

Because the highlight of this protocol upgrade is more than the integration of privacy transaction functions, we can also properly expect the price increase in the secondary market caused by the integration of this protocol.

It is difficult to imagine that the infrastructure in the Web3.0 era will be a PoS public chain with a very centralized degree whose nodes are in the hands of a few people. Tezos is currently the most decentralized PoS public chain, but the trend of nodes becoming centralized is still inevitable: Tezos ’top three exchange nodes Coinbase / Binance / Kraken account for a total of 19% of the voting rights of the Tezos network. And its weight ratio is increasing every month.

In contrast, the proportion of independent node service providers led by Cryptium Labs is gradually declining. This shows that currency holders are gradually pledged their coins to the exchange. As a node contributor led by Cryptium Labs, one of Tezos' largest contributors, a decrease in voting means a reduction in node revenue, which may also evolve into a reduction in node confidence and loss of motivation to contribute to the ecology. In the long run, this is not conducive to the ecological development of Tezos.

Tezos was originally designed to make the network sufficiently decentralized, but can the results really be as expected?

Several recent controversies. Tezos ’male founder Arthur was removed from the Tezos Foundation ’s technical committee, and said on the Reddit forum that he received a hidden threat. The female founder said on the Reddit forum that it has not been determined whether her card game Emergents is based on the Tezos platform. Although according to the announcement in the public media, this card game is clearly based on the Tezos platform.

These two things stirred up a debate in the Tezos community. Regarding Arthur's withdrawal from the Foundation's technical committee, I think the foundation needs to give the community a reasonable explanation. This is actually an open and transparent issue of the Tezos Foundation. Regarding the platform problem of the female founder's card game, I think the so-called community must do more based on the Tezos platform is a moral abduction. Based on the Tezos platform is naturally a good thing, if it is the rest of the other platforms, it is not unacceptable.

Personally think that Tezos is more important to deepen and improve on-chain governance than to do anything else. With assets on the chain, NFT is just a backup development plan. How can Ethereum fail Tezos in the NFT field? It just gives investors some confidence. On-chain governance is the fundamental difference between Tezos and Ethereum.

The Ethereum Foundation spent only US $ 6 million this year, while the Tezos Foundation consumed US $ 36 million in half a year. Among them, 13 Tezos global communities were funded with US $ 13 million, which means that each community received an average of US $ 1 million in funding awards. Although holding 600 million US dollars, is the burning rate of such funds too fast to ultimately support the long-term operation of the project? We admit that the possibility of continuing to burn money to make an ecology is not small, but is such a method of burning money reasonable? More money is not a reason for the Foundation to squander randomly, otherwise it will only repeat the mistakes of EOS and Block.One. In addition, it also involves the issue of transparency of the foundation. What is the monthly salary of the foundation members? Is it true that one's own selfish desires are carried out under the pretext of ecological assistance? I hope the fund will use the funds reasonably and save some money. After all, the goal of Tezos is the people of the next century, a social movement that has lasted for decades.

Bitcoin tzBTC on Tezos has also been released, which means that Bitcoin will enter all major public chains except Ethereum. A blockchain tokenization campaign for Bitcoin is starting. But what needs to be marked is, can public chains other than Ethereum successfully forge enough bitcoins on their own public chains, will users buy it?

In addition, Tezos still has no practical application. Of course, this is also a common feature of Ethereum killers. If there is any application, it is not called Ethereum killer, but "enough to contend with the public chain of Ethereum killer." And some of the biggestists in the Ethereum community often attack Tezos with no applications on Tezos. It can only be said that it will take some time. Overall, Tezos has done very well.

Cosmos status and issues

Cosmos 'Game Of Zones was officially opened, and a small episode was Game Of Zones' Twitter account that initially blocked all members of the Tendermint team. Tengmint designer Peng Zhong tweeted and condemned Zaki's shielding violation of Cosmos's spirit of agreement. Afterwards, GoZ official Twitter made an apology and lifted the shield.

This incident can be seen as a follow-up to Cosmos's previous internal power struggle. The previous internal disputes seemed to end with Zaki's resignation. However, Zaki and his supporters are still contributing to the Cosmos ecosystem. The conflict between the two parties has changed from intra-organizational conflicts to various frictions in Cosmos network cooperation.

It is unacceptable that IBC, as the core and most important development component of Cosmos, turned out to be 2-3 people who were kicked out of the company by the power struggle. But Tendermint has done nothing, either to maintain the Tendermint and cosmos-sdk systems themselves, or to work on projects of little significance such as Vigro.

The so-called multi-entity coexistence system makes the rights more dispersed, but it is just a pretext and an excuse. Zaki's Twitter claim that despite leaving Tendermint, he will still contribute to Cosmos, and it will only leave the two sides with a step down.

So far I have not seen this as a good collaboration model. What I saw was a handful of people fighting for the IBC alone, and still the most loved Cosmos people who were expelled from the company. Before the project is mature, take the so-called decentralization of the project to talk about things, rather than avoid doing things and responsibilities.

It is gratifying that although IBC development is slow, in the end, there is continuous progress. Game Of Zones is now officially open, and participating teams can sign up. Although I do n’t know the practicality of IBC after its development is completed, the good news is that IBC will definitely be able to be completed, but it ’s only a matter of time.

After IBC development is completed, the most important thing is to attract people to use the cross-chain standard IBC. This requires the team to take the initiative to promote and market. Instead of passively waiting for other project parties to come to use IBC. But according to the urinary nature of the current team, it seems that they cannot be expected to take the initiative to promote.

The only explanation is that the team has achieved financial freedom through the Cosmos project and has no other incentive to do things. As far as the project itself is concerned, Cosmos has done its best. After the completion of IBC, the technology promised in the original white paper was realized. How many teams can make the empty talk a reality. For private equity investors, more than 30 times the income is already very remarkable. The project members naturally obtained the initial wealth freedom because of the team's token incentive distribution.

Moreover, the project party did not give up the project, only that there was a large delay in the development progress, and our expectations for Cosmos were too high, so there was a large psychological gap.

The team lacks cohesion, core development has left Tendermint company, Jae as CEO does not act, he has a lot of responsibilities. Cosmos itself holds a pack of king bombs, has a first-mover advantage, but plays an indestructible card. Its series of confusing behaviors and sao operations are really regrettable.

But on the whole, the Cosmos project has done its job. It's just that investors in the secondary market didn't make money.

At the beginning of this year, the Cosmos Governance Working Group was established to help Cosmos Hub propose governance and reduce the threshold for governance participation. Up to now, the parameter change document and the demonstration document of the community fund expenditure proposal have been released, and the establishment of a governance community is under way.

The governance process of Cosmos is much shorter than that of Tezos. Tezos requires at least three months, while Cosmos takes less than one month. If the team is more aggressive, it should take the initiative to lead the Cosmos network to upgrade regularly. For example, upgrade once a month. However, it has been 3 months since the last upgrade of Cosmos, but no one person or organization has come up with a new proposal. It is really disappointing.

Ethermint developed by Cosmos aims to migrate Ethereum's ecological applications to Cosmos, but at present, the actual adoption rate of Ethermint is almost zero. And Ethermint has a certain technical history debt. Although it was outsourced by the Chainsafe team, but observing their code base, Chainsafe mainly developed Ethereum and Polkadot. The development of Ethermint has been stalled for a long time.

Cosmos also has the advantage of its underlying ecology. The DEX of mainstream exchanges such as Binance is issued based on cosmos-sdk, as well as projects such as kava and IRISnet. In the short to medium term, these low-level ecological projects are not easily destroyed. Although the Cosmos team is torn apart, the CEO leadership is insufficient, and IBC development is seriously lagging behind, but due to the richness of its underlying ecology, it will not reach the point of zeroing and death. Cosmos's first mover advantage is enough to allow it to eat for a long time.

Ethereum status and advantages

tBTC recently completed a $ 7.7 million financing led by Paradigm in an attempt to bring Bitcoin into the Ethereum ecosystem. The demand for decentralized financial applications on Ethereum is obvious, and Bitcoin is the world's largest cryptocurrency. It makes sense to build a bridge that allows Bitcoin to interact with DeFi, and tBTC is a reliable attempt to do so.

Once tBTC has taken shape, combined with the Uniswap exchange, transactions between Bitcoin and Erc20 tokens can be conducted within the Ethereum ecosystem, allowing DeFi's overall market value to rise by billions or even tens of billions of dollars.

There is also competition among Uniswap-type AMM automated market makers. Uniswap's competitor Balancer recently received US $ 3 million led by Placeholder, and gained liquidity of US $ 190,000 three days after its launch. At the same time, Uniswap itself will be upgraded to version 2.0, adding new features such as lightning loan, protocol charging mechanism, and exchange between Erc20 tokens. On the other hand, Uniswap and Balancer may themselves be hit by Uniswap competitors with token economies.

312 The market crash did not destroy Ethereum's DeFi ecosystem. Uniswap and Kyber's trading volume broke through a new high, reaching a daily volume of more than 30 million US dollars, which is comparable to centralized exchanges. The anti-fragility of the DeFi ecosystem has already emerged.

In the past month, the market value of global stablecoins has increased by US $ 1.5 billion, and the market value of the stablecoin BUSD issued by Binance has increased from US $ 100 million on March 12 to US $ 200 million in just two weeks. Coinbase injected Uniswap with USD1 million USDC to increase liquidity. The total market value of stablecoins reached US $ 7 billion. Nearly 90% of them are issued based on Ethereum.

Currently USDT ranks 4th, USDC ranks 18, PAX ranks 28, BUSD ranks 35, and TUSD ranks 37. It can be predicted that the proportion of stable coins in the total market value will increase in the future, and the market value of individual stable coins will also move toward Top20 or even Top10.

What situation has this caused? Take a look at the composition of the Top 10 market cap: currency, stablecoin, and platform currency. There are only two smart contract platforms left: ETH and EOS. And EOS will be squeezed out of Top10 in the future. The two centralized products of stablecoins and platform coins gradually erode Top10, which inevitably makes people feel a trace of magicism.

Why does DeFi only work on Ethereum? Because when billions of dollars of assets are locked in the contract, the project party will become very cautious, so it will only choose a platform that is decentralized and safe enough. Although decentralization is slow, this is a continuous source of innovation, and this is also the power of blockchain. Only enough decentralization, safety and fairness can attract developers to your ecology.

Will Ethereum's new generation of Layer 2 technology, Rollup, repeat Plasma's mistakes, or open up a new path. Why Layer2 has not been practically applied for many years. Will Rollup be falsified in the end?

The degrading process of the public chain

In 2020, we can't help but re-examine those new public chains, the so-called Ethereum killers. Haseeb's words are true: we have reached half of the war on the public chain, and every new public chain soldier who reached the front line was beheaded by Ethereum. We underestimated the network effects of Ethereum. We also finally understood how difficult it is to defeat Ethereum.

When everyone in the Tezos community is saying that EOS is so fast, Tezos is so slow, and has not rushed to improve TPS, Tezos founder Arthur once said that the main thing is: Tezos' top priority is to make Tezos enough to be decentralized. Looking back, this sentence was very precious during the great leap forward of the public chain at that time.

The reason why Ethereum 2.0 is so slow is the same here. The basic goal of the community is to improve TPS under the premise of sufficient decentralization, not by reducing the number of nodes. If Ethereum 2.0 is made, it will become the most decentralized PoS on the market. Each PoS node only needs to deposit 32ETH, and there will be hundreds or thousands of PoS nodes.

From this perspective, these new public chains lost from the beginning. Because they focus on high performance. They did not realize that the degree of decentralization is irreversible, but performance can be improved iteratively. In other words, for a public chain, the priority of the degree of decentralization is higher than performance. So, can it be said that in this public chain war, the Ethereum killers lost before they even fought, and Ethereum directly lay to win?

In the new year, we should also re-examine Polkadot and Cosmos. Their advantages are not that great. Because each public chain can make its own set of cross-chain communication guidelines, each public chain can have its own cross-chain characteristics. In other words, the cross-chain can either be used alone as a track, or it can only exist as one of the characteristics of the public chain.

Recently, VB tweeted to call on the Ethereum community to quickly develop Ethereum's cross-chain function. Summa quickly responded to VB's cross-chain call and open-sourced several Ethereum cross-chain bridges. In addition, Nervos, Solana and other projects also have their own cross-chain development plans. All of this can't help but make me look at the cross-chain duo Polkadot and Cosmos even more. I think there will be a war between public chains in the future: the battle of cross-chain communication standards.

Each public chain can be equipped with a set of cross-chain guidelines: Polkadot's XPCM, Cosmos 'IBC, Nervos' cross-chain guidelines, Ethereum's cross-chain guidelines, etc. Competition will be fierce. But such competition is also worthwhile. Competition between standards is the highest level of competition.

So who will win the battle of cross-chain communication? There is no doubt that Ethereum is still the most likely to win. Because Ethereum is increasingly dominant in the DeFi field. Not interacting with Ethereum will greatly reduce the utility of these Ethereum competitors. Therefore, Ethereum's competitors will increasingly need to interoperate with Ethereum, that is, cross-chain.

In order to interact with Ethereum, Ethereum's competitors will need to follow some interoperability standard. This cross-chain standard was developed by Ethereum. And this is not what Polkadot and Cosmos want to do. Isn't it possible to be made by Ethereum in the end?

Instead of pursuing the Polkadot-style winner-take-all and the big and complete, the Ethereum killers should step back and pursue the use cases of a certain field and direction. A wise public chain should optimize a single use case, and this use case will become the key to DeFi and Web3.0. A typical example is Chainlink. As an Oracle public chain, it cleverly avoided the positive battlefield of public chain competition and turned to become a partner with all public chains. Because Oracle is just what all public chains need.

Trying to focus on a wide range of use cases is difficult. Because in general, the solution is a minor improvement in various use cases, but it is not enough to solve any one use case. It is better to achieve maximum optimization in a certain use case or industry, and form your own position without being eroded by Ethereum.

Imagine a situation where different application types are on different chains in the future:

Ethereum has become a DeFi chain. All financial-related transactions will happen on Ethereum. Tezos becomes an STO chain. Securities-related transactions all happen on Tezos. Cosmos becomes an interoperability chain, and the interoperability of all chains must go through Cosmos. Chainlink has become an Oracle chain, providing a true and reliable data source for major projects. Nervos has become a Layer2 chain, providing Layer2 development framework for the public chain, and releasing Layer2 with one click. Filecoin becomes a storage chain, providing file transmission and storage. Solana has become a DEX chain, and high-performance DEX transactions occur on Solana. Coda becomes a compression chain, specifically used to compress transactions with large amounts of data. Near becomes a sharding chain, which is suitable for sharding type applications.

It is worth mentioning that the application custom chain idea advocated by Polkadot and Cosmos. Application customization chain is to send a chain as an application. It can also be considered as public chain application. At present, the demand for application customized chain is not large. On the contrary, there is a sign that the public chain has been reduced to an application chain. From the publicization of the application, to the downgrading of the public chain to the application chain, what happened in the middle?

Intentionally pursuing all-round use cases, the ending may be that each use case is not professional enough. If the public chain cannot be large and complete, there is no need to work hard, and it is not a shame to retreat. Is it impossible to be famous for a single use case to achieve loneliness and defeat?

With retreat as the advance, Fang Xian reveals the true character of the hero of the public chain.

We will continue to update Blocking; if you have any questions or suggestions, please contact us!


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