Chaoxing Dialogue Issue 13 | CasperLabs's future-oriented underlying design
As early as 2013, the famous "genius boy" Vitalik mentioned "smart contracts" when writing an article for Bitcoin magazine and conceived Ethereum. But in 2014, Vitalik realized that the Eth codebase could not be expanded, so he formed a team to study the Ethereum expansion, and together with Vlad zamfir, he proposed the Casper Proof of stake solution.
In 2013, two Israeli researchers Yonatan Sompolinsky and Aviv Zohar pointed out the flaws of the PoS network. (https://interparestrust.org/terminology/term/Greediest%20Heaviest%20Observed%20Subtree)
This defect is called GHOST (Greedist Heaviest Observed Subtree), and it seems that every solution will have undesirable consequences. Until Casper (the legendary friendly ghost) appears! Everyone was very excited, and the price of ETH skyrocketed. Fast forward to 2017, Vitalik and Vlad brought the first version of the CBC Casper specification. Vitalik decided not to fork and released an extension solution called FFG Casper (POW-based ETH will gradually transition to POS in the next few years).
CasperLabs developers prefer the origin of CBC Casper technology, so we decided to start a business. The strong genes of the project enabled us to complete more than 15 million US dollars of equity financing and start the network without selling the token. We believe this is the most powerful blockchain technology released so far. This is not bragging, Vitalik often says so. The key is to prove the liveness of the agreement.
We are fortunate to work with Dr. Daniel Kane. This is another important moment. Dr. Daniel Kane is a well-known mathematician. He has multiple degrees from MIT and Harvard University. He has almost all important mathematics awards in North America. He is one of our best scholars (not the only one). He proposed an upgraded version of the traditional CBC Casper, which is more efficient and can prove activity. Please refer to our official website for mathematical proof.
This is a new field. I am a seed investor in Ethereum, and Brock and I helped found EOS, but to be honest, CasperLabs may be the most exciting project we have ever seen.
We briefly shared the history of CasperLabs. We think this is very important to help understand the EVO we are going to launch. If there are no more questions for now, I will ask our CEO Mrinal Manohar to continue today’s AMA...
Iris: Since 2017, CasperLabs has been a reputable project, but there are many other public chain projects, such as Ethereum, algorand, polkadot, Cosmos, Hashgraph, etc. Compared with competitors, what are the technical advantages of CasperLabs?
Let's discuss them one by one. When it comes to decentralization. Other protocols have some centralization points, or an authorization system. For example, Hashgraph has a board of only 39 members that can propose blocks, all of which are decided by the company and other board members. Similarly, all other protocols have some sacrifices to truly open and decentralized platforms. CasperLabs is the only agreement that does not do so.
When it comes to safety, we use mathematical foundations to verify safety. In fact, we found many DDoS attacks that other protocols cannot resist. We will publish more research on these attacks, as well as our mathematical methods, led by Dr. Kane (he is a double Ph.D. from Harvard and MIT, and one of the most famous mathematicians in the world). We can guarantee this security. In addition, I want to say that we are the most developer-friendly blockchain.
MM: Let's talk about what specific things we are doing! First, we are very open to programming standards. As can be seen from the figure below, although solidity is currently the most used smart contract language with about 10,000 developers, it is still much less than the total number of 26 million developers. The picture on the right shows that Rust has the highest support rate among programming languages (from a Stack Overflows survey of more than 90,000 respondents). This tells us that if the blockchain is to succeed, it needs to meet the needs of all developers, and they obviously tend to use a wide range of well-supported programming languages. The CasperLabs blockchain supports Rust and Assembly Script as contract languages. This makes it very easy for developers to use the tools they are familiar with. By adopting open standards, we will be able to create a platform that welcomes all 26 million developers.
Second, our tools can greatly enhance the developer experience, including:
1. Flexible payment code (the sender does not have to pay)
2. Weighted key management (any type of threshold system can be created)
3. Upgradable contract (never lose control of the system)
4. Direct status query (easy access to data)
I would be happy to give you a more detailed introduction to any of the above points.
Iris: How is CasperLabs doing community building at this stage? Such as Telegram Group, Twitter, WeChat, etc.?
MM: Since the completion of the A round of financing, our community participation has increased significantly. The following is a summary chart on community participation:
Our community members come from more than 15 countries around the world, with the largest communities in the United States and China. Unofficial independent groups/communities have been established (in Turkey and Italy) and we encourage the development of unofficial communities. Recently, through holding several AMA events similar to this one, we have talked with more than 10,000 participants. Since October 2019, the monthly average increase in community and exposure has reached 290%. Our Telegram group and WeChat group used to have only a few hundred fans, and currently have more than 3,000 and 5,000 community members, and they are still increasing. In the entire social media channels (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.), our number of exposures rose from 104,000 in the third quarter of 2019 to 290,000 in the first quarter of 2020. In addition, our mailing list has increased from less than 2,000 subscribers to nearly 11,000 at present.
We are very happy that our community has a strong interest in the underlying technology, but I want to declare again that we are just getting started. In the future, as restrictions are opened up, we will continue to have in-depth interactions with the community. Our goal is to hold many live events, hackathons and more other events to accelerate the current good development trend.
The next round-table dialogue will be served by Mr. Zheng as the moderator!
When we select partners, two factors are very important, that is, ability and trust. When I bring the Chinese team overseas, I must trust this team. vice versa. This is a real international transaction, based on trust and understanding. Only in this way can we achieve real international success.
The Casper team, we spent a lot of time with the team, this is also the early investment method that Zhen Fund taught us. If you want to get 50 times the benefits, you must be grounded from the beginning, and you must have a sixth sense to evaluate the team. Because angel investment actually invests in the team.
The CasperLabs team meets these characteristics. It has a strong team and we trust them. I believe in Mrinal. Therefore, I am happy to introduce them to my Chinese partners. Similarly, for a great group like Nova Club, it has many excellent members like Consensus Labs, and I believe in them very much. Therefore, I am very happy to introduce CasperLabs to Nova Club. For me, this relationship is very important.
Therefore, whether we bring Chinese projects to American/Canada/Europe Western partners, or we bring Western projects to Chinese partners in Beijing, Shanghai, and Shenzhen, everything is related to trust.
Zheng: As an institutional investor, Rocktree Capital only participates in projects with huge potential. Please tell us the story between you and Casperlabs.
Omer: We have worked with many companies that have become unicorns. It may be in the form of investment, or it may be in the form of consultants. These include some of the early Internet companies for which we provided consultants, such as NetEase, Baidu, Facebook, Alibaba and New Oriental. It also includes early projects we invested in, such as Youke Gongchang, YiqizuoYe, as well as WIND and Chainlink-we know what it takes to become a unicorn. CasperLabs has these qualities.
Our goal is 30 times or 50 times return, not 50% or 2 times return. From the partnership with Zhen Fund, we understand that we need to be able to evaluate the team's ability, their characteristics, their ability to deal with challenges and their integrity at an early stage. We spent a lot of time doing due diligence with the technical team and the founders-RockTree conducted these tasks in New York, Asia, Toronto, Los Angeles and other places to understand their capabilities and advantages.
我们得出的结论是：技术团队非常强大。它始于以太坊（Ethereum）和弗拉德·扎姆菲（Vlad Zamfir）的CBC Casper概念。然后丹尼尔·凯恩（Daniel Kane）加入了，他是哈佛大学/麻省理工学院的双重博士学位，也是联合国三大数学家之一。他在数学上证明了CBC Casper。CBC Casper是以太坊3.0 –以太坊权益证明。这是第一次对其进行数学证明，您可以在《Casper的白皮书》中了解更多信息。Medha是首席技术官，同时也擅长负责大型团队的运作。
Medha CTO拥有创业背景。还有斯科特·沃克（Scott Walker），他在2013年创立了首个ICO，即MasterCoin，众筹了5000 BTC。彻底改变了区块链公司筹集资金的方式。MasterCoin继续成为OMNI。他还是以太坊和EOS的早期投资者，并且知道如何把一个早期项目一步步发展壮大到全球排名前20甚至前10。
EVO is such an example-how we distribute tokens fairly to help it have a good performance, and the innovation of EVO is proposed by the Mrinal and RockTree team. I want to thank one person here, Zhao Dong-this is our common idea to create this method of raising funds like EVO. This is the innovation of blockchain and capital markets. If the team only has nerds and technology, then they will not be able to carry out such innovative finance and token distribution.
As an investor, Rock Tree knows that it is the best thing to have such an experienced team that will support the value of tokens through good long-term decisions.
The other thing is that I really support pure blockchain. I am a blockchain purist. One of the reasons I like CasperLabs so much is its spirit. It is faithful to the basic principles of blockchain. For this I have to praise Vlad Zamfir. He is a researcher at the Ethereum Foundation, and he and Dr. Daniel Kane wrote the CasperLabs white paper. It is worth mentioning that Vlad ensures that the architecture and principles are related to keeping the blockchain as decentralized as possible-which is why the holding company of CasperLabs is called ADAPtive-as decentralized as possible. This concept brings the most scalable solution in blockchain-this is why the world is fascinated and will continue to expand in the future.
Scalability and decentralization and security-these factors, in the development of many projects will choose to sacrifice one aspect in order to meet other requirements. But with the development of the industry, those projects that have always been loyal to the core spirit of the blockchain can finally win. Because we need to grow from 50 million users to 500 million users. As the Ethereum 3.0 architecture, CasperLabs's core spirit of being loyal to the blockchain will be released this year, not four years later.
Daniel Kane博士：硅谷知名数学家，麻省理工学院双学士，哈佛大学博士，CBC Casper "Highway协议"主要作者。该协议是首个可数学论证有效且无需牺牲安全性的协议。关于Kane博士的维基文章请查阅：https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daniel_Kane_(mathematician)
MM: Yes, the board has the real blockchain and financial boss. First of all, the chairman of the board is Terren Peizer. Wall Street legend-Zelig of Wall Street. Last year, we went to "Burning Man" (Huo Renjie) with Scott. I was in Jingwei Concentration Camp, which was really amazing. This is the camp of Terren and Scott. 747 aircraft. He is very famous and knows many traditional investors. I also know many traditional investors-so does Scott.
Therefore, we have gained a lot from the equity round A financing. After the tokens are listed, we can also have American investors-as the tokens start to rise, we will attract many traditional investors to join. This is the key for us to put new traditional funds into the project, because it is not enough to attract regular blockchain investors, so we need new leeks. For CasperLabs-the chairman of the board is a legend in Wall Street traditional finance-RockTree is also traditional and blockchain-therefore, after the transaction, we will attract many traditional investors and start next year to ensure that the token price receives new capital inflows .
Terren Peizer of Acuitas, Omer mentioned, led our round of investment. I would also like to add that he has run and turned around several multi-billion dollar companies, such as the Cray supercomputer company. We are fortunate to have him involved, and this is his only blockchain investment.
Michael Arrington is the founder of TechCrunch, they have always been a good strategic partner.
We got the investment of Blockchange.vc operated by Ken Seiff, and got the advice of Dr. Gavin Wood of Polkadot. This is a very strategic partnership for us, because we will work with PolkaDot and other key second-tier Solution cooperation.
Woodstock is a fund in India that will help us work with local communities.
Distributed Global is a highly regarded fund company in New York
We have received a large investment from Hyundai Motor in South Korea and will conduct a proof of concept with them.
In fact, we had more than 60 investors in our initial investment, which shows our belief in decentralization. In addition, we have also received investment from China's top funds, such as Hashkey (Wanxiang Group), SNZ Holdings, Rocktree, MW and other well-known institutions. Some of these funds have already participated or are finalizing the details of participating in CLX validator sales.
CLX functions like ETH on the Ethereum network. Its users pay transaction processing fees, in addition to that, it is also a pledge pass. From the beginning of the design, we strictly avoided the true concentration of ownership. This is why when we raised $14.5 million in Series A, we did not sell any tokens; and even at the earliest stage, we diversified our investment share to more than 60 investors.
The token distribution ratio is as follows:
1) The team only keeps 8% of the tokens. Considering that this is shared by more than 40 people, the concentration on the individual level is very limited, and the release period is 3 years.
2) We allocate 16% of the tokens for developer and community rewards, which will be managed by the developer DAO. We already have celebrities from Amazon, Microsoft and other companies involved in the work of this DAO. As time approaches, we will have some related announcements. This will be a combination of points system similar to Amazon AWS, helping companies build on the network, and incentivizing developers to help upgrade and enhance the system. Our idea is to deploy at least 5 years.
3) We allocate 6% of tokens to consultants and strategic partners. This will be similar to the incentive mechanism for developers and the community, and will be distributed over a long period of years.
4) Only 10% of the tokens are held by the CasperLabs network; all distributions will be public and very long-term.
5) The remaining 60% will be distributed to the public through our validator sales/EVO and continuous public sales.
We haven't sold any tokens for a reason. The problem with IEO is:
1) A small number of institutional investors get high quotas at low prices
2) A large number of retail investors can only obtain a small amount at a high price
This caused chaos in the market. Retail investors cannot enjoy the same conditions and rights as institutional investors. We feel that this is essentially unfair.
The reason for EVO is to allow retail participants (if they choose) to get exactly the same terms as the institution on our first token sale in history. This structure is to lower the barrier to participation, which has never been done before. Participating in EVO's tokens will become part of the construction and release of the CasperLabs network.