Chainweaver: Simplifying Kadena
Note to Readers: This articles assumes a baseline knowledge of Kadena. If you have not yet, check out www.kadena.io for more information.
What is Chainweaver? Put simply, it’s the first GUI wallet for Kadena’s Public Blockchain (“Kadena Public”). I bet you’re wondering: “Why is this person writing an entire article about a cryptocurrency wallet? What’s so special about that?” Great question! The Chainweaver wallet is unique because it was and continues to be tasked with doing the seemingly impossible: Simplifying some of the most complex elements of Kadena Public.
The Implications of a 10 Chain Cryptocurrency Network for Chainweaver
Right off the bat, the most novel aspect of Kadena Public, for anyone even slightly familiar with cryptocurrencies, is the presence of the 10 braided chains which make up Kadena Public.
So, if there are 10 chains, where are the KDA stored? Well, each individual KDA can be stored on any of the chains but only on one chain at any time. What does this mean for Chainweaver? It needs to be a wallet that makes it simple for users to track their funds on not just one chain but across ten chains. This can be a tall ask for any end user, but the first iteration of Chainweaver shows that the Kadena team is focused on making this as simple as possible. For example, let’s create a Kadena Public account.
Creating a Kadena Public Account (Or 10)
Once you have created and / or logged into your wallet, you are greeted with a simple, clean interface that makes the next step incredibly intuitive:
From looking at this screen, we can discern (A) which network we are on, (B) that we have no accounts on this network, and (C) we have easy access to a button that allows us to add accounts (“+ Add Account” button). Since we have no accounts, it makes sense that we should add one. If we click the +Add Account button, we are greeted with the following popup:
Ignoring the advanced section for now, we have two fields that we can fill out: Chain ID and Notes. The Chain ID is a drop down menu that allows us to choose a the chain that we want to add a new account on (0 through 9). The notes field is self explanatory and optional. After we select our chain and perhaps add a note to help identify our account, we are drawn to the clearly visible, bright blue, “Add New Account” button. Clicking the button will bring you to our original screen, where you can see your newly created account!
A new user can, even with some hesitation, complete this process in less than fifteen seconds and can form an account on all ten chains in less than two minutes. In other words, a new user can be ready to send and receive funds on not one, but all ten chains in less than two minutes after logging into Chainweaver. In other words, Chainweaver reduced a novel, complex aspect of Kadena into a simple, two minute task for a new user!
It’s All in the Design
In my opinion, Chainweaver’s design and UI is what sets it apart. I have used wallets from a variety of cryptocurrency networks and have spent many hours using MetaMask. So many of these networks have wallets that either:
- Were hastily made without the end user, especially new users, in mind; or
- Try to hide the more complex aspects behind a few confusing buttons that never give the end user the feedback that they need to better understand how the network functions (looking at you MetaMask with your deceptive gas buttons!).
Chainweaver doesn’t do this. Let’s look at the transaction / gas settings for a transaction on Chainweaver.
It’s impressive how intuitive this is. It’s so simple. We slide the bar and it changes the gas price and the gas limit while showing us how it impacts the transaction fee.
Why is this important? It provides clear and immediate feedback to inexperienced users (especially those with little knowledge of cryptocurrencies): “If I increase my gas price, my transaction goes faster”. Despite this, it doesn’t hamper more advanced users. We can still manually type in the gas price and the gas limit.
The Future of Chainweaver (and Kadena) Looks Bright!
Chainweaver’s biggest challenge right now is that it’s a wallet for Kadena, a cryptocurrency network that takes familiar blockchain and cryptocurrency concepts and adds just enough complexity that it pulls even the most experienced cryptocurrency enthusiasts out of their comfort zone. Most of Chainweaver’s criticism stems from the fact that it does not yet make ALL of Kadena’s complex aspects simple. However, the Kadena team openly stated their dedication to making all interactions on the Kadena network as simple as possible (for any developers reading this, check out Pact!). With that in mind, Chainweaver may still be young, but its future is bright.
TL;DR: Chainweaver’s UI is amazing and will be critical for on-boarding inexperienced cryptocurrency users and experienced cryptocurrency users alike. Most of it’s problems are due to Kadena’s complexity, which Chainweaver actively tries to solve. Chainweaver has a bright future, and it will play a defining role in the success of the Kadena Public Network.