Ministers and businesses are enthusiastic about blockchain
Think about Mongolia and the image that’s likely to spring to mind is of sweeping grasslands, mountains, freezing winters and nomads. An unlikely place you might think for ground-breaking technology, but in fact it’s a great country to do blockchain pilots.
New roadmap, product demos, and regular updates will highlight progress
Cardano is in an exciting transition stage. The project has long combined thoughtful product vision with research-driven specification and evidence-based development processes. Still committed to that rigor, we’re now making the jump to a new stage of development where first-ever-in-the-world new capabilities are delivered. The rubber is starting to hit the road.
New products, Cardano progress and industry issues in focus at event
Government ministers, industry professionals, and Cardano fans were at the IOHK Summit 2019 in Miami this month, excited to hear IOHK CEO Charles Hoskinson outline the future for Cardano and launch Atala, the company’s enterprise offering for business.
Formal specifications for delegation and incentives published
The goal of the Cardano Shelley era is to bring full decentralization to Cardano, moving beyond the federated epoch and handing control of the ledger over to the community via stake pools.
Engineers conclude Byron phase as Shelley work progresses
The release of Cardano 1.5 marks the start of the shift from the Cardano Byron era to the Shelley era and is an excellent opportunity to describe the ongoing work for Shelley and how the transition will happen.
IOHK has a history of putting great research into practice. This includes the use of functional programming languages, adoption of formal methods, and — of course — implementing our own peer-reviewed research into blockchain consensus algorithms.
Peer-reviewed design means Ouroboros is free from a flaw affecting many proof-of-stake blockchains
Ada is not among the 26 cryptocurrencies identified by US researchers last week as being vulnerable to ‘fake stake’ attacks. The Cardano blockchain underlying Ada is based on proof-of-stake (PoS), but its Ouroboros protocol uses no bitcoin code and is not affected by the PoSv3 problem. This is not just good luck, but a consequence of the thorough, formally-verified approach taken during Cardano’s development.
Matthias Benkort and Jacob Mitchell cover what's new
In this blog, wallet API lead Matthias Benkort explains backwards-incompatible Cardano wallet API changes that are coming in Cardano 1.4, and devOps lead Jacob Mitchell shows how to build a Cardano client with both the old V0 wallet API and the new V1 wallet API, instead of the default option providing only the new API.
IOHK’s new smart contract tools for developers and financiers
Last week IOHK hosted the inaugural PlutusFest at the University of Edinburgh. Members of the IOHK team flew in from around the world, with interested academics, developers, financiers, and members of the press also in attendance.
Plutus Platform is developed by a world-leading team
Today IOHK releases Plutus Platform, a smart contracts language for the Cardano blockchain. You can try out Plutus online, with no need to download or install anything, via Plutus Playground. Plutus Platform is open source. You can find code, documentation, and sources here.
The first computers were programmed in “machine code”. Each kind of system had a different code, and these codes were low-level and inexpressive: programs were long sequences of very simple instructions, incompressible to anyone who had not written them. Nowadays we are able to use higher-level languages like C, Java and Haskell to program systems. The same languages can be used on widely different machines, and the programs’ structures reflects what they do; on blockchain, their equivalents are languages like Solidity and Simplicity. These modern higher-level languages are general purpose – they can be used to solve all sorts of different problems – but the solutions they express are still programs, and they still require programming skills to use them effectively.
IOHK’s chief scientist introduces staking
In a proof of stake (PoS) blockchain protocol, the ledger is maintained by the stakeholders that hold assets in that ledger. This allows PoS blockchains to use less energy compared with proof of work (PoW) or other types of blockchain protocols. Nevertheless, this requirement imposes a burden on stakeholders. It requires a good number of them to be online and maintain sufficiently good network connectivity that they can collect transactions and have their PoS blocks reach the others without substantial network delays. It follows that any PoS ledger would benefit from reliable server nodes that hold stake and focus on maintenance.
IOHK research on proof of stake appears at CCS in Toronto
A third major paper from the Ouroboros line of research was presented at a leading computer security and cryptography event yesterday, a recognition of the contribution the work makes to the field of computer science.
Developers can now build their own light wallets
Today IOHK releases Icarus, a reference implementation for a lightweight wallet developed by the IOHK engineering team. We hope that this code base will be used as a point of reference to enable developers to create their own secure light and mobile wallets for Cardano. Icarus is a fully open source code base that will be the first step in a range of open source initiatives to provide developers with a suite of tools for Cardano.
Smart contracts tech wins attention as computer science innovation
As a third-generation blockchain, Cardano incorporates state of-the-art technology that attracts the interest of computer scientists on the worldwide stage. In the past year, papers describing the consensus algorithm of Cardano have been presented at the leading cryptography conferences, and this month it was the turn of its smart contracts technology to be in the spotlight.
Proof-of-stake protocol offers same security guarantees as Bitcoin
In the area of blockchain research proof of stake has long posed many questions for cryptographers and the subject has been of primary importance for IOHK researchers over the past two years. Professor Aggelos Kiayias, Chief Scientist at IOHK, has led work with a team of cryptographers to formalise a family of protocols called Ouroboros. It is a great distinction for their efforts that their paper describing the protocol was accepted to Crypto 2017, the foremost cryptographic event, and another paper was heard this month at sister event Eurocrypt.
Philipp Kant and Lars Brünjes explain incentives, stake pools and formal methods
Cardano is a project that is unique in its vision, scope and design, and its world-class team is working at the frontier of computer science. As development progresses we’re contacted on a daily basis by people from all around the world who want to learn more, and so IOHK was pleased to make its first trip to Germany recently to talk about Cardano.
A major package of improvements and fixes is ready for users
The software update today is the first major release for Cardano since the mainnet was launched at the end of September and it consists of a great deal of work from the development team.
Charles Hoskinson addresses packed crowd at LSE
The London School of Economics has a long history of links to Africa. Founded in 1895 four years before the outbreak of the Boer War, the school launched into the debates of the era. Some of the first leaders of newly independent African nations studied at LSE and its progressive and anti-imperialist stance saw the school play a part in the anti-apartheid movement.
Cardano development in focus at Lisbon
January got off to a busier start than normal for IOHK because on top of all the usual research and development being carried out, pretty much the entire company traveled to Lisbon for our latest meetup. These week-long events are always hectic and challenging – where everyone comes together to push forward work on projects - but they are also fun, allowing people to meet face to face, sit down over a meal, and get to know each other.
A blog post on the Steemit website appeared recently making a number of claims regarding Ouroboros. The article contains several factual inaccuracies. For instance, it is claimed that “DPOS” in the Ouroboros paper stands for “delegated proof of stake”, while in fact, DPOS means “dynamic proof of stake”, or that the protocol requires a “2/3+” ratio of parties being honest, while in reality it just requires an honest majority, i.e. the stake controlled by parties following the protocol is more than half the total stake.
A new development approach from IOHK engineers will bring benefits to users
Since the release of mainnet, IOHK engineers have not only started work planning the new features of Shelley, the next big release, but have also been evolving the way they work. The biggest change is that the team developing Cardano will follow a new release cycle where updates are more regularly made to the live software. This is now possible because we have the foundation of Byron to build on. This approach will benefit the community because it means we can deliver features to users sooner, and also has other advantages, such as allowing us to design very detailed tests for the code. Considerable planning has been under way to help the team shift to this approach, and we are confident it will bring good results. This blog post explains what is happening behind the scenes.
Hundreds of fans celebrate bright future for the cryptocurrency
The technology was conceived in an Osaka restaurant more than two years ago and from that small beginning Cardano has been built into a leading cryptocurrency. The project has amassed a team of experts in countries around the world, has generated more than 67,000 lines of code, and has a strong and growing community in countries across Asia and beyond. Along the way, Cardano has set new standards for cryptocurrencies with best practices such as peer review and high assurance methods of software engineering.
IOHK presents first provably secure proof of stake algorithm at flagship event
Developing a secure proof of stake algorithm is one of the big challenges in cryptocurrency, and a proposed solution to this problem won the attention of the academic community this week in California.