We recently published the first technical papers for Flow, a new blockchain designed for consumer apps and the digital assets that power them.
Today we’re proud to announce our latest partnership: a collaboration with the UFC to create crypto-backed digital assets and an accompanying blockchain game for mixed martial arts fans around the world:
UFC on Flow offers fans an unprecedented crypto-enabled experience: unique or limited edition items available for collectors to buy or win, digital assets trading on an open marketplace, and games that make players real stakeholders in the value they help create.
UFC is one of the fastest growing sports of the last decade with 314 million global fans and fighters in over 35 countries. UFC fans are some of the most loyal and passionate in the world of sports — this makes a blockchain experience a natural next step for the franchise.
Because apps and digital assets on Flow exist on a decentralized network, they are also open for developers around the world to build new products, creating an amazing amount of choice for consumers.
For example, any developer can build a gallery application for fans to display their collectibles, or a financial market tracking the price movement of digital assets in all the different games on the network. Third parties can build trading houses, pawn shops, and reselling services — anything demanded by users.
This feature of blockchain is called composability, and it promises to be as transformative for crypto networks as open source software was for the web:
Kickstarting network effects with games and onboarding
Flow is designed for a future where blockchain — or crypto — is a standard part of the software stack, easy to use by consumers and developers.
We have a simple strategy for helping crypto- and crypto-enabled applications achieve mainstream adoption:
- Partner with the world’s most loved brands to drive consumer excitement
- Emphasize user-friendly onboarding and low-friction payments across dapps
- Bootstrap network effects and empower developers to build the future
Games and entertainment are the best catalyst for helping consumers understand the value of new technology, especially crypto. Virtual worlds let consumers play with economic systems without taking undue financial risk — or learning new behaviors.
That said, Flow is a general-purpose blockchain, made for developers to create crypto-enabled products of all kinds — e.g. marketplaces, messaging, micropayments, licensing, and DeFi products (borrowing/lending, stablecoins, trading).
What makes Flow different: technical details
Unlike other blockchains with a single specification for a validator, like Bitcoin or Ethereum, Flow divides the work of processing a transaction and validating a block into four different steps, each handled by a different validator node type. The separation of concerns in this multi-role design dramatically improves the performance of the network, as outlined in our first technical paper: Flow: Separating Consensus and Compute.
Validators on Flow engage in consensus as well as providing transaction collection, computation, and verification services to the network. The process of how the different validator roles work together on Flow is detailed in our second technical paper, Flow: Block Formation and Execution.
Due to Flow’s multi-role design, participation is possible at a variety of computational and financial tiers, open to anyone with a reliable internet connection. In particular, we expect many Verification Nodes at scale, working in parallel to secure every transaction. The verification process is outlined in our third technical paper, Flow: Execution Verification.
The Flow architecture lets the network scale to serve the expectations of mainstream consumers and developers while preserving easy composability and decentralization.
Flow also comes with usability improvements that simplify the development process for smart contracts while dramatically improving the customer experience of crypto-enabled apps built on top:
- Shared execution state (no sharding!): any number of smart contracts and user accounts can interact with each other in one atomic transaction
- Protocol level smart contract wallets for every user account: protecting against lost accounts and forgotten private keys
- Upgradeable smart contracts: making it possible for developers to fix mistakes without building risky backdoors
And many more, read the Flow Network Primer for details.
Jump in and start building today
If you’re a developer, sign up for the Flow Alpha for a chance to have your apps highlighted right next to those by the biggest brands in the world.
As an early member of the Flow community, you will get access to the Flow environment, allowing you to start writing smart contracts and testing the network. Additionally, the Dapper Labs team will host exclusive webinars and interviews with the top builders in the space who will also support developers building on Flow.
You can sign up for the Developer Alpha here.
2020 is going to be a big year on Flow and we have a lot of exciting details that we can’t reveal just yet. Get ready for a world of infinite possibility where you shape the future.