Statemint: Polkadot’s first parachain
Statemint is a generic assets parachain that allows the deployment and transfer of assets (both fungible and non-fungible tokens) and serves as the fundamental infrastructure that enables the Polkadot ecosystem to communicate with the rest of the on-chain and off-chain environment. It represents the so-called “common good parachain” on Polkadot (its closest counterpart is Statemine, which is the parachain on Kusama). Aside from the core protocol token DOT, the assets held by Statemint can be broadly classified as follows:
- Assets supported by an on-chain protocol’s utility.
- Assets supported by an off-chain protocol.
- Assets without any backing.
The Existential Deposit (ED), transfer fees, and deposits for proxy/multisig operations on Statemint are roughly one-tenth of the values on the Relay chain.
What makes Statemint unique?
Statemine became active on Kusama little over a year ago, allowing users to construct fungible and non-fungible asset classes. Since then, Statemine has established five bi-directional HRMP (aka XCMP-Lite) connections with other parachains, and two assets have been considered “sufficient” by Kusama stakeholders. Statemint, its cousin, has become a Polkadot parachain. And various apps, block explorers, development tools, and custodians now support assets on both networks.
To be granted a parachain slot, most Polkadot parachains have to win an auction. There are several reasons for this, the most important of which is extremely high network security. However, there is another type of parachain in the Polkadot ecosystem: Common Good parachains. These public services are provided for the benefit of all users and are a shared responsibility of the network. Any desired changes necessitate a proposal, some lengthy discussion, and a vote via Polkadot’s corporate governance.
The network participants who are most aware of the importance of these public services can make sure that these required common-good parachains are deployed and managed through Polkadot’s governance mechanisms, ensuring that the necessary resources are made available to support the parachain’s operations.
Statemint enables any organization to deploy assets on Polkadot. This might be a DeFi platform providing a stablecoin, an artist distributing its NFTs, or even a central bank releasing various crypto assets. Everyone can deploy their assets on the network simply by having the required deposit.
In general, Statemint is intended to be a fundamental chain that serves as an interface for representing and managing assets. The creator of any asset deployed via Statemint will continue to be responsible for defining its economic parameters. Asset developers can form a team or multi-signature groups to provide authorization for minting, freezing, or burning tokens.
Creation assets on Statemint.
To create an asset on Statemint, a deposit of 10 DOT is required, as well as around 0.201 DOT for metadata. Before making it, make sure your account balance is slightly greater than the total of those two deposits, which should account for the mandatory deposits and transaction costs. Using the teleport feature, you may transmit DOT from a Polkadot account to an account on Statemint.
You may be aware that NFT assets can already be deployed on Statemint. Nonetheless, owing to Statemint’s simplistic architecture, which solely supports asset balance tracking, any NFT marketplace that attempts to employ Statemint NFTs would be susceptible to many vulnerabilities and centralization difficulties. The simple truth is that Statemint was never envisioned as the backbone of a marketplace. But some NFT-related projects seek to provide an implementation that will allow Kusama’s NFTs to be transferred to Polkadot and numerous EVM or non-EVM compatible chains.
Other “Common Good” parachains
Although Statemint may be considered the most prominent active network, the Parity team has been hard at work preparing for the launch of several other chains it wants to present as common good parachains. This work has required implementing runtime improvements that allow for more expressive interaction over XCM, as well as establishing testing and release methods that include several runtimes.
Parity is currently working on a new parachain for collectives and planning to submit a governance proposal to connect it to Polkadot. The term “collectives” may not conjure up many images, yet Polkadot and Kusama already have collectives, each with its own Council and Technical Committee. Even though these specific collectives will be phased away with the planned next generation of Polkadot governance, the capacity to assemble and act as a group (without relying on third parties such as attorneys and jurisdictional courts) remains an essential aspect of Web3.
The new Polkadot governance plan includes a new collective, the Fellowship, which enables a ranking group of specialists to weigh in on sensitive or highly privileged suggestions. Another rising collective is called Polkadot Alliance, which is already operational on the Westend test parachain. Several community teams came up with the idea for the Alliance roughly two years ago, mostly to combat exploitation of the Polkadot brand and unsourced code. Accepted by the network, the Alliance can be an on-chain industry collective that establishes a code of ethics surrounding brand usage, scam activities, and destructive behavior, but also recognizes teams who make good contributions to the Polkadot network’s development and success.
The first Polkadot OpenGov Fellowship whitelisted root call on Kusama has recently been implemented. This entailed coordinating two separate referendums with two independent governance bodies, each with their own optimistic turnout/approval curves.
Parachains are simply one component of the Web3 technology stack. Polkadot’s success is also reliant on a robust ecosystem of block explorers, wallets, APIs, and tools. Statemine already has support from various infrastructure components, including Subscan, Statescan, and DotScanner explorers, Polkadot JS wallets, TxWrapper, Substrate Sidecar API support, and RPC node hosting from Parity and OnFinality. Several teams, such as RMRK, have deployed or plan to deploy their assets on Statemint/Statemine in the nearish term. Holding assets on Statemint and moving them to other parachains is merely the beginning of application development on Polkadot.