Taraxa AMA Compilation #010.
Steven answers community questions in this quick recap of our recent AMA sessions!
1. What problem is Taraxa trying to solve?
By tracking informal transactions, we make them highly trustworthy, which gives businesses a lot of short-term, operational value — minimizing confusion, disputes, and making better decisions faster. In the longer term, there is also a huge financial value. These informal transactions form the basis of a reputation because it shows who you’re working with and collaborating with, it reflects REAL and verifiable work and interactions that are impossible to fake. Why does reputation matter? Because a huge part of the financial system is based on reputation.
Today if you go to a bank and try to get a loan, the bank will typically ask for 2 things — what do you have for collateral — e.g., your house, your car, your next 6-months of paychecks, and also what is your credit score — e.g, are you a trustworthy person. But look at crypto today, the only financial instruments we have in crypto today are collateralized — i.e., you have to lock in your tokens. There is zero concept of reputation or credit, because there is no such data today. The crypto finance world is completely disconnected from the real world, and the real world is not providing any credit information into the crypto finance world.
Taraxa is the only project that is working to provide this reputation/credit data input! It is a huge and difficult task, but we have made many breakthroughs with our market-tested platforms such as Helio for asset leasing, and Marinate for construction & supply chain. As we build our user base we will be in a position to provide real, verifiable reputation data that will power the next DeFi boom. I think this is truly what makes Taraxa special, we don’t follow the trend, we create the next trend.
2. What are the next milestones on Taraxa’s Roadmap?
You can find our updated roadmap here: https://trello.com/b/ERarjqXQ/roadmap
It’s work-in-progress and will be continuously updated as we continue our product development.
Our immediate focus right now is to get the community engaged in our testnet as soon as possible. We’re crushing bugs every day and rooting out a lot of security edge cases to improve the stability of the network. We will be launching with a slew of interesting activities for the community to participate in.
For the short-term future, we have two primary goals for 2021, one is mainnet deployment, the other driving adoption for our application platforms.
For mainnet, the most important thing to note (even beyond performance) is security & stability. We will be closely involving the community every step of the way as we roll out a phased approach to large-scale stress testing of the network. First, we will incentivize the community for simply running a testnet node and reporting errors. Second, we will roll out a mirrored staking on ETH that projects onto our testnet’s staking mechanisms, and enable community members to stake their tokens, participate in tests, and earn yields. Lastly, we will transition from the ERC20 tokens into native tokens and conduct final rounds of stress testing and security audits before releasing our mainnet candidate.
For our application platforms, we will be rolling out a series of integrations with baseline communication tools such as WhatsApp, Telegram, and WeChat to help the community engage with our product, get a better understanding of their uses, and help source additional use cases. Throughout our project’s history, many of the use cases and customers had been introduced to us by enthusiastic community members, and we wish to keep honoring that tradition in involving our community in our product development & adoption.
3. When will staking be rolled out?
Great question, and the Taraxa ecosystem definitely has staking! We’re going to be doing a phased roll-out alongside our testnet > mainnet roadmap.
First, we’ll have simulated staking, which is just a contract on the ETH chain for our ERC-20 token holders to lock up their TARA tokens and earn up to a 20% annualized yield, but also with big bonuses upfront for early participants!
Second, we’ll roll out mirrored staking, whereby we’ll activate the ETH bridge and mirror the staking from ETH onto our testnet, which further helps to test our network.
Third, as we roll out our mainnet candidate, our community members can convert their ERC-20 into the native token, and stake directly on the mainnet.
4. Can you talk a bit more about Pollen bridge? What are its core functions and how will it work to connect Taraxa with other blockchains?
Cross-chain bridges had been in our roadmap since Day 1 of the project for several reasons.
First, it allows us our users to take the operational reputation established by all these anchored informal transactions and offer them as a source of creditworthiness to financial markets — today almost all the financial market traffic is on ETH and that’s why the bridge is important to enable this value creation.
Second, it allows us to get access to the liquidity pools in other ecosystems such as ETH, and it also enables us to use “proof of liquidity” rather than “proof of stake” as a security guarantee that just so happens to also have ancillary benefits in the secondary market.
Third, we could use the bridge to guard against long-range attacks by anchoring periodic state snapshots (e.g., Merkle roots) into other networks, effectively making the cost of that attack so astronomically high that it doesn’t make financial sense anymore.
5. Any plans to launch a Taraxa wallet?
This is also an interesting question. We will be releasing our own browser extension to support future staking & voting on our network. A point of emphasis here is that while our network is built from the ground up, we have ensured from Day 1 that all of our RPC layer would be 100% compatible with ETH, so we can make use of all the open-source toolchains from the ETH ecosystem, and developers won’t have to learn anything new when working with the Taraxa ledger. This is also why we can create a wallet so quickly.