Nervos and BSN Host AMA to Discuss Open Permissioned Blockchain Initiative

Dec 9, 2020 · 10 min read

On December 2nd, BSN co-hosted a Telegram AMA in partnership with Nervos to discuss the Open Permissioned Blockchain, a new initiative which adapts public chains to offer permissioned controls over node deployment and removes the mechanism of using cryptocurrencies to pay for gas fees.

Nervos was previously announced as one of BSN’s first public blockchains to join the Open Permissioned Blockchain Initiative of BSN, along with Polkadot, Tezos, Algorand, Cosmos, Ethereum, and IRISnet. The Open Permissoned Blockchain Initiative is the newest development from BSN designed to create a pathway for public chain technology in China. Together, BSN, Nervos, and the other public chains are working to bring the technological aspects of the initiative to fruition, which is expected in early 2021.

Henry Ma, the chief architect of BSN, and Kevin Wang, Nervos co-founder, were on hand during the AMA to walk attendees through the new initiative, Nervos’ role in realizing an accessible blockchain network in China, and the resources available to developers who want to build on Nervos and BSN. Kevin and Henry also answered questions submitted by the community.

Below is the transcript of the AMA:

Q1. How does the partnership with Nervos relate to BSN’s vision of realizing an accessible blockchain network in China?

Henry Ma:

OK, let me explain why BSN wants to start the Open Permissioned Blockchain Initiative firstly.

As an important part of the global blockchain technology development, public blockchains have their unique technologies, applications, and ecosystems. However, the public blockchain technology has failed to penetrate the Chinese market due to regulatory concerns and a lack of product-market fit.

Although BSN only supports permissioned blockchain frameworks in China, it supports both permissioned and public blockchains on BSN international portals and PCNs. BSN enables developers to rapidly develop, deploy, and operate various blockchain applications (DApps) at a low cost and realize simple interoperability between blockchains

BSN believes it is necessary to trail-blaze a new path that allows public chain technology to grow steadily in China. As such, BSN plans to transform public chains into the “Open Permissioned Blockchain” so that it can be seamlessly deployed on the BSN China ecosystem. This is the most direct and effective way for public chain technology to enter and develop in China legally.

Technically, an open permissioned blockchain is a public blockchain that has permission controls over node deployment and removes the mechanism of using cryptocurrencies.

Compared with traditional permissioned blockchains, an open permissioned blockchain allows DApps to operate without running their own peer nodes but instead sharing master nodes.

Additionally, just like public blockchains, DApps are visible to everyone and can be invoked by anybody who knows the smart contract addresses.

For many small to medium-sized companies, this open permissioned blockchain framework is an easier and more cost-effective way to deploy DApps, even though it has limited capability compared to the traditional permissioned frameworks such as Hyperledger Fabric.

One of BSN’s core concepts is to integrate various blockchain technologies to form a one-stop infrastructure of blockchain services and to empower various websites to provide services to developers to deploy and operate DApps in a convenient and cost-effective way through APIs.

BSN has integrated multiple public blockchains on international portals and PCNs, and is very familiar with the technical features of public blockchains.

Therefore, it is relatively easy to implement an open permissioned blockchain with BSN in China. After many internal discussions, the BSN Development Association, the governing body of BSN China, has decided to launch the BSN Open Permissioned Blockchain project within BSN’s network environment in China.

Nervos was among the first batch of public chains being integrated into BSN International. Starting August 10, developers from Nervos community have been able to build DApps and run nodes using data storage and bandwidth from BSN’s overseas data centers.

Nervos also joined as the first batch of open permissioned blockchains. This was announced on September 30. Now we are working together on the technical transformation. It will be available in early 2021.

Q2: How do you see the BSN partnership fitting into Nervos’ vision of realizing a more accessible network?


Henry has given a very thorough introduction. I’ll briefly talk about the rationale on the Nervos side. For us, the goal is to meet where developers are. The Open Permissioned version of Nervos is a separate one from the Nervos public blockchain, but shares almost identical technologies, dev tools, etc. The demand to use blockchain tech in China to build regulatory compliant apps is very real, with a central government mandate and investments. We want to provide a way to train developers to onboard the technical ecosystem of Nervos, but also make it compliant for businesses to build their apps.

Because of the similarity in technology and the interoperability that we’ll provide (can get into that a bit later too), it’s going to be very easy to cross to the Nervos public blockchain whenever the need arises. We see the evolution of blockchain as a process — open permissioned blockchains have their advantages and can work well in China’s environment today.

BSN is making access to developers quite easy, and is becoming a dominant platform in China — we’re expecting a large number of developers, in the millions over the years, to get on board, start with compliant blockchain apps, and through it, to explore the fully permissionless world.

Q3: What kind of cross-chain services are live on BSN now, if any? What problems do cross-chain projects look to solve, and what do these mean for China’s blockchain market?

Henry Ma:

The cross-chain solution with Poly and IRITA are already live in BSN.

BSN has established the Interchain Communications Hub (ICH) to adopt the cross-chain protocol of heterogeneous chains and the design of a double-layer structure, using relay chains as cross-chain coordinators, multiple heterogeneous chains as cross-chain transaction executors, and acts as a relayer of cross-chain data.

By solving validity, security, and transactional issues of cross-chain data, a secure, easy-to-use and efficient cross-chain system is implemented.

1. Supports both isomorphic and heterogeneous chains.

2. Supports any information to cross the chains.

3. Very easy to access. Application chains do not need to do custom development adaptation. Just deploy one smart contract per chain.

4. Transactional support, supporting not only scenarios with the need for ultimate consistency of transactions, but also scenarios with the need for strong consistency of transactions, with support for any transaction, and scalable to any number of chains.

5. Cross-chain protocols are secure and reliable, based on cryptography and consensus algorithms. Each application chain can verify the legitimacy of cross-chain transactions on its own, thus ensuring the security of cross-chain interactions.

I think the significance of interoperability is not just about any region or any blockchain. It is the key to mass adoption of blockchain globally. Without interoperability, every blockchain is an intranet. Just like the early stage of the Internet — starting with intranets, which results in data silos. Now the internet is all connected through TCP/IP protocol.

Interoperability not only means the possibility that disparate blockchain systems can communicate with each other. Above all, it is the ability to share, see, and access information across different blockchain networks without the need for an intermediary — like a centralized exchange.

So, BSN wants to implement interoperability to create an ecosystem that will enable different blockchains to easily communicate with each other. It is easy to see why interoperability for blockchain is not only desirable but above all critical, in a world where enterprises depend on ever-greater levels of collaboration and interaction. In fact, interoperability is crucial in any system — it simply won’t work to its full potential if data cannot communicate.

It is the only way to realize the full promise of blockchain technology and get the most out of their blockchain investments. Interoperability would enable smooth information sharing, easier execution of smart contracts, a more user-friendly experience, the opportunity to develop partnerships, and the sharing of solutions.

Q4: What cross-chain problems is Nervos focusing on solving? Furthermore though, what is unique about Nervos compared to other cross-chain projects?


Today, we have cross-chain solutions that are essentially “build chains with our tools and we can make sure they interoperate.” the most well-known examples are the network of Substrate-built blockchains and the network of cosmos-SDK built blockchains. But what about the many other blockchains already out there, with real assets, users and communities? We’re seeing “stop gap” solutions that involve a centralized validator set, but what we’re building are fully permissionless, decentralized interop solutions that can work with any other blockchain, not the ones built with a prescribed framework.

We’re approaching this from a very user-centric approach — how do we enable cross-chain applications, or “multi-chain applications” such that users can just interact with Nervos and other blockchains in a fully integrated, seamless way? How do we enable developers to seamlessly bring their apps built on another blockchain to Nervos? How can we build the infrastructure such that apps built on Nervos interact with not just other apps on Nervos, but apps on other blockchains? Those are the problems we’re aiming to solve. And we’ll have something to share soon.

The solution will leverage unique strength that only Nervos can offer — I’ve had an early peek a few days ago and it’s pretty magical

Q5: What impact will the cooperation between BSN and Nervos have on China’s Blockchain market? And what’s the response been from the developer community in the region?

Henry Ma:

Nervos has a very active and solid community and has been a good friend of BSN.

Actually, BSN just had live-streamed an AMA session in Bihu. Nervos has a very good community foundation. When BSN chooses its partners, the rule of thumb is — the community quality, and technology. Nervos, in my opinion, is different from other public blockchain projects in many ways. Nervos is not a single blockchain, it’s a layered architecture including both Layer1 & Layer2 protocols.

As a blockchain infrastructure, BSN provides Nervos’ developers with exceptional low-cost resources and tools to deploy and run DApps. Public chain partners are also offered the opportunity to join the open permissioned blockchain — which allows public chains to provide its services in the Chinese market.

We are really glad Nervos is one of our first batch of open permissioned blockchains. This is a very high-quality and mutually beneficial partnership. I believe with more and more developers starting to use Nervos and its permissioned version to build their DApps — more innovations and successes will come along.

We have also launched the Testnet lately — which offers free services for permissioned Dapps, and interchain service is also offered in the Testnet. We encourage everyone to go and try it out.

The open permissioned blockchain initiative that we just launched has received massive support domestically and internationally. Nervos as one of the partners is certainly receiving more attention in the Chinese market.

In our recent updates, we launched the Testnet which I encourage everyone to try it out:

Q6:Would also like to ask if there’s anything currently being offered to developers looking to build/onboard on to Nervos and BSN?


We’ve worked with BSN for quite some time and the experience has been great. BSN is not only an infrastructure partner, but also in technical solutions they produce, market reach, and marketing and promotion of the general blockchain tech. For both of us, we try to lower the barrier of entry to onboard developers to come in to build blockchain solutions. On the infrastructure side especially, Nervos nodes are already running on BSN that developers can use.

For developers who are building on the BSN infrastructure on the public Nervos blockchain, we have dedicated channels and support if you get stuck — just come hang out in our dev channels on telegram or discord and let us know. There are developer-focused events and incentives such as hackathons and incubators — you all will see more starting next year on this front!

Q7: Is there anything you can share about the projects that are currently being built or considered on BSN?

Henry Ma:

Currently, we are working on the open permissioned blockchain which planned to go live at the end of this month. We are also working on interchain services and DAML integration. Stay tuned!

Q8: What benefits and incentives do BSN Network offer DApp and Blockchain developers to make them stay? Is there a developer’s training program on Nervos Ecosystem to support them? From user @Idee02

Henry Ma:

BSN has lowered the cost for developers and provides the infrastructure for permissioned blockchain and public blocks, also BSN is making access to developers quite easy.

Developers no need to build up the blockchain running environment, he/she just needs to focus on the business logic. The cost for publishing DApps in BSN is about 10% of the cost they do it by themselves.


To make developers stay, we’d need to offer them easier access to users, lower operating cost, mature infrastructure, and the ability to rapidly iterate their solutions.. bottom line, cheaper cost and easier to make money. We’re working on our training program now and hope to have it ready soon!

Back to the original question — BSN helps developers lower operating cost and not to worry about infrastructure, which would help them iterate quickly to go to market. We’re here to support in many other ways including the ones I mentioned previously, but also we’re very accessible — it’s not hard to find us here or in person, and we’re happy to jam with you on your great world-changing ideas 🙂

Q9: “Are there any metrics you look at in projects before they can be invited to the BSN, if yes how are they identified and onboarded?” from@crownsurgeon

Henry Ma:

For the framework of the open permissioned blockchain and public chain, we will consider the technical characteristics, developer community activity, and performance. For the permissioned blockchain, we have an integration standard for it.

To get more information on BSN’s on the Open Permissioned Blockchain initiative and Nervos’ involvement, view the entire AMA on Telegram:

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