A (Technical) Letter to the Community from Vite Labs CEO Charles Liu

Looking forward to 2021

Vite Editor
Vite Labs

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Dear Vite Community:

The Vite team was established in June 2018. Over the last two years, we delivered a number of high-quality products and services, and successfully created a high-performance, zero-fee public chain. The Vite chain now powers many real-world applications such as decentralized exchanges and payment, and has accumulated a wide range of global users.

Does this mean that it’s “mission accomplished” for Vite? On the contrary, and in my humble opinion, our work is just getting started. We have long-term goals, and we are excited about the work ahead of us.

Vite 2.0

If we call our work up to this point Vite 1.0, then we are now officially entering our next phase, Vite 2.0.

Vite 1.0 focused on solving the contradiction between the efficiency and cost of blockchain; Vite 2.0 will focus on how to make Vite a more decentralized platform.

Decentralization

The core value of blockchain technology lies in decentralization. The essence of decentralization is mainly manifested in the following three aspects:

  1. Trustlessness — People’s trust does not need to be built based on human nature and law but based on mathematics and code. This new type of trust relationship will not be shaken by individuals, groups, or governments doing evil. The cost of trust is also lower.
  2. Competition — To maximize commercial profit, traditional business organizations instinctively pursue monopolies, and monopoly means centralization. The world of blockchain must allow competition and games to achieve the goal of decentralization.
  3. Openness — Any closed and exclusive competition will eventually lead to centralization. This is an important point and will be elaborated further in the section below.

Openness

In the world of blockchain, users should be allowed to choose freely, and value can flow freely between different networks, protocols, and ecosystems. This is because blockchain technology is still in the early stages of development. Different projects will explore in-depth in different fields. Some projects focus on value storage, some projects are more suitable for high-frequency transfer of value, and some projects focus on privacy protection. and there are many other projects in development. At this stage, there will not be an exclusive, monopolistic agreement that will replace other agreements. Ethereum will not replace Bitcoin, and Cosmos and Polkadot will not replace Ethereum, because each platform has its unique value.

In summary, openness means that users are allowed to choose freely, without being forced to abandon one blockchain to use another. Therefore, the design of agreements, products, infrastructure, and governance systems in Vite 2.0 should fully follow the requirements of openness. Vite should not become a substitute for other blockchains but should become a “Free Port” in the world of blockchains, a hub of blockchains between all blockchains.

Specific Goals

Therefore, what steps should we take to increase the decentralization of Vite and create a more open blockchain ecosystem?

Tech

At the technical level, we will need to improve the Vite protocol to achieve cross-border asset transfer capability.

Firstly, unlike a notary mechanism based on private keys or multiple signatures, this improved, “bridge” protocol (which is tentatively called the Vite Bridge protocol) is completely decentralized. If this goal is successfully achieved, ViteX will become the safest and most open DEX in the industry. Users can freely trade any asset, whether it is a token on the Vite chain or assets on other public chains. The safety of these assets will not be threatened by any team or individual.

Vite Bridge differs from other “cross-chain” projects in that it is a completely open protocol that focuses on establishing connections with all blockchains. As long as Vite Bridge is implemented, any public chain can realize the cross-border asset transfer through Vite and other public chains.

Cosmos and Polkadot are representatives of such cross-chain projects. They provide mechanisms for interactions between chains within their respective protocols, but they cannot support interactions across protocols. For example, a Cosmos ecosystem cannot interact “cross-chain” operations with a PolkaDot ecosystem.

Technically, the essence of the decentralized bridge protocol lies in how to implement the consensus algorithm of another blockchain on one blockchain, to determine whether transactions on another blockchain are legal within one blockchain.

Specifically, the core technology of Vite Bridge is how it runs Vite’s “micro node” on all blockchains, and how it runs other blockchain micro nodes on Vite.

Our current thinking, although this is subject to change as our design evolves, is that Vite Bridge is divided into two layers: Transport Layer and Protocol Layer.

Transport Layers are responsible for the bilateral transmission of transactions on Vite and transactions on other blockchains through a set of relay nodes;

Protocol Layers use smart contracts running on Vite and other blockchain virtual machines to lock assets, issue additional assets, and verify the legitimacy of cross-chain transactions.

The technical challenge of Vite Bridge mainly comes from how to adapt to the specificity of different blockchains.

Furthermore, becoming compatible with some weak virtual machines, or even blockchains without virtual machines is also a difficult task in designing Vite Bridge.

Product

At the product level, we will work to open the entire technology stack, service stack, and product stack to the community.

The products and services we currently provide, including Vite nodes, SDKs, block explorers, wallets, Vite Connect, ViteX exchange APIs, and ViteX.net will be fully open-sourced to the community with helpful documentation and proper tech support.

The main tasks include:

  1. Decoupling between different components of the protocol stack to reduce their dependence on each other, so they can mix and match more freely.
  2. Optimize the design of basic services and reduce the cost of deployment and maintenance.
  3. Encourage product diversification and interchangeability to reduce the risk of single-node failure. In other words, even if the official API, website, or mobile app is unavailable, users can still utilize other third-party products.

Governance

At the governance level, we will expand the scope of community governance and establish DAO. Soon, Vite’s major decisions will be decided by a token holder vote. Major updates to the ViteX exchange will also be decided by token holder vote.

Of course, community governance is not as simple as leaving all projects solely up to the community. As an important member of the community, the Vite team will continue to shoulder our responsibilities in infrastructure innovation, product development, market operations, and business expansion.

Our Vision

The competitiveness of Vite will come from creation of real applications and the growth of real users. Vite must continue to meet the real needs of users and provide core values ​​that other projects cannot replace. It cannot be just a “fun project,” and definitely not an “over-hyped” project.

Vite’s positioning is not to replace other blockchains and create a closed value system. On the contrary, Vite will remain committed to inter-chain value flows, user sharing, and ecosystem openness with any other blockchain projects, and become, as mentioned earlier, a free port in the blockchain world.

2021 Roadmap

In summary, the key goals for the Vite team in 2021 include the following:

  1. Vite Bridge — An Open Cross-border Asset Transfer Protocol.
  2. Vite DAO — Community governance of Vite’s public chain and the ViteX exchange.
  3. Open Product Stack — Open all Vite and ViteX services and products to the community and encourage third-party products and services participation.
  4. Vite Protocol Updates — Public chain protocol optimization and upgrades.
  5. Vite App Updates — Major revisions and upgrades to the Vite mobile wallet.
  6. Vite Techies Club and Vite Developer Committee — Hackathon and Grant opportunities.

Thanks for your support, and happy new year!

Best regards,

Charles Liu

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Vite Editor
Vite Labs

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