Sunday, 24 February 2019

Ethereum Slayers 2.0: Crypto’s Usual Suspects, or New Kids on the Blockchain?

Whenever a new blockchain platform launched between 2017 and 2018, it was inevitably heralded as a future replacement for the largest, most successful cryptocurrency platform of all. In short, it came bearing the name of Ethereum Killer.

Those prophecies turned out to be premature, and by 2019 the hit that’s been put out on Ethereum is still waiting to be cashed.

A year is a long time in the crypto space, and many would argue that the lineup of possible contenders for Ethereum’s throne has changed already. New upstarts have come to the fore, while some who’ve been in the fight for too long are starting to weaken due to falling coin prices.

So let’s take a look at the so-called Ethereum Killers in 2019. Are we looking at a new crop of assassins – or just the usual suspects?

ZILLIQA (ZIL) DRAWS FIRST BLOOD
zilliqa cryptocurrencyZilliqa has perhaps already drawn first blood in the battle against Ethereum – last year the Ethereum-based game Etheremon was packed up by developers and emigrated to the Zilliqa blockchain. | Source: Shutterstock
Zilliqa has perhaps already drawn first blood in the battle against Ethereum – last year the Ethereum-based game Etheremon was packed up by developers and emigrated to the Zilliqa blockchain.

The move was in response to rising gas prices on Ethereum, and the assertion that Ethereum’s lack of scalability solutions was draining the game’s potential. The Zilliqa team announced at the time:

“We are glad to announce that we will work with the Zilliqa team to explore Zilliqa as a scalability solution for Etheremon. The higher throughput and low gas of Zilliqa’s sharding solution offer players better experience.”

More on Zilliqa can be read here, in CCN’s interview with Zilliqa CEO, Xinshu Dong where he goes into detail on Zilliqa’s sharding process:

“Imagine a sample network of 1,000 nodes. ZILLIQA will automatically divide the network into 10 shards each with 100 nodes. Each shard can now process transactions in parallel. If each shard is capable of processing 100 transactions per second, then all shards together can process 1000 transactions per second.”

If all of this sounds too good to be true, read my deep-dive on Zilliqa which covers some of the technical difficulties still facing this possible Ethereum slayer.

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HOLO (HOT) – THE NON-BLOCKCHAIN WILDCARD
blockchain graphIn this sense Holo opts for a distributed network as opposed to a decentralized one (however, a distributed network is by nature decentralized). | Source: Apollo Capital/Medium
More of a wildcard compared to some in this list, Holo (HOT) sets itself apart from the rest of the crowd by not actually utilizing a blockchain. Instead, Holo uses distributed hash tables (DHT), which are more similar to a torrent network than a blockchain.

In this sense, Holo opts for a distributed network as opposed to a decentralized one (however, a distributed network is by nature decentralized).

Already, several projects have opted to build on the Holochain network, including a Holo-based Reddit competitor named Comet; an open-source legal system called Ulex; as well as several others in industries ranging from social media to supply-chain.

In early 2018, the CFO of Mozilla, Jim Cook, named Holo as one of the projects which was creating an agent-centric model that could wrestle control of the internet back from the hands of Google and friends. Holo’s association with Mozilla is extended by their common use of the Rust programming language.

When Binance’s CEO and founder, Changpeng Zhao, sent out job posts for Rust developers last year, the effect was such that the HOT coin price responded by jumping 26%.

WAVES (WAVES) – THE OLD GUARD

Waves launched in early 2016, and within two years over 100 projects had opted to launch ICO’s on the Waves platform. The most successful of those is the gaming-focused MobileGo (MGO), which briefly broke onto CoinMarketCap’s front page in November, and now has a market cap of $18 million.

That could soon change, however, as $120 million was just raised via the Waves platform for its Vostok ICO. With Waves holders set to be airdropped a portion of the Vostok tokens, it could be speculated that Vostok was the driving force behind Waves’ 300% ascent throughout December 2018.

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