The Blocknet is a revolutionary advancement in cryptographic technology: a true peer-to-peer protocol between nodes on different blockchains. It is the “internet of blockchains,” enabling open-ended communication and delivery of services between users of different cryptocurrencies, and vastly increasing the user base (and profit potential) of any given coin.
The Blocknet is an initiative by XCurrency developer Dan Metcalf, who, when considering how best to build XCurrency’s user base and to improve the state of crypto in general, hit upon an idea to accomplish both in one fell swoop. What if one coin’s features could function as services accessible to users of every other cryptocurrency? What if the foundation fostering this technology could ratify new coins and thereby exclude the “scamcoins” that crypto is rife with? What if it could incubate further development and enable collaboration between talented developers? The idea of a Blocknet was born.
A TRULY DEMOCRATIC, NON-CENTRED PROJECT
The Blocknet is not, of course, the only project creating an “internet of blockchains.” However it has at least three fundamental differences from competing projects. Firstly, it has no central or core currency and is open source, and thus will create a truly open inter-blockchain framework that can be extended as widely as the internet was. While the idea was initiated by XCurrency, XC is no more a “core coin” than any other, and its team does not control the Blocknet Foundation. Every participating coin is eligible for a seat on the Foundation’s board. This is necessary for the Blocknet to freely and directly link any cryptocurrency network to another one, and thus truly be an “internet of blockchains.” Secondly, joining the Blocknet does not involve 10% of a coin's money supply being bought and centrally controlled. Centralisation of a coin’s money supply carries risk and demands that one trust the central entity. No such scenario applies to the Blocknet, because its core technology, the XBridge, will be open source and can therefore be integrated into a wallet’s code for free. Instead of an asset-backed approach, the Blocknet’s value derives directly from its incredible utility. Thirdly, the Blocknet is founded on the XBridge, which is not an RPC call protocol but a true P2P protocol. It is one thing for nodes to connect to each other directly (and thus “P2P”), but it is another for the protocol by which they connect to be true P2P rather than simply JSON-RPC or some other method.
HOW IT WORKS
If some cryptocurrencies are creating “blockchain 2.0” features, the Blocknet is an “inter-blockchain 2.0” technology. It is distributed, its technology coded into every Blocknet-compatible node. It is trustless. It is not a coin, but a way of enabling nodes from different coins to render services to each other. Its core technologies are the XBridge protocol, by which nodes communicate, and a decentralised exchange, by which nodes are remunerated for their services. All of its technologies are accessible via an API.
The Blocknet has its own token of value. However it is not a coin but a token of the value the Blocknet adds to every service it enables. Every time a service is rendered, the node(s) rendering the service receive payment directly from the node(s) that request it, and the Blocknet charges a micro-fee for supporting the service. Owners of Blocknet tokens earn these fees in proportion to the number of tokens they own – the accounting for which is of course done trustlessly and in the public domain.
A brief (and incomplete) list of services available to all users of any coin on the Blocknet is:
- Private payments
- Distributed file storage
- Node-based VPN provision
- Decentralised exchange of currencies
- The use of any ATM supporting any coin on the Blocknet (i.e. automatically convert to the requisite currency in order to deposit/withdraw)
- Private messaging
- Distributed web content server
- Asset creation, distribution, and management