Cardano is not only a cryptocurrency but also a platform that can be found at CardanoHub.org. It’s a unique, open-source blockchain technology, based upon scientific principles. Cardano’s cryptocurrency goes by the name of ADA, and it is currently one of the most popular ones on the market, easily cracking the top fifteen, if not the top ten.
If you’ve heard about it, and you probably have, you might be wondering about the ins and outs of it. Well, here you’ll find out exactly what is Cardano cryptocurrency.
What is the Cardano Cryptocurrency?
Cardano’s unique cryptocurrency is called ADA. It is created by a China-based firm going by the name IOHK (Input Output Hong Kong), and its leader is the mind behind Ethereum and Ethereum Classic, Charles Hoskinson. It was released on September 29th, 2017 after two years spent in development. The currency was obscure until November when it suddenly blew up.
This next-generation cryptocurrency was implemented in the Haskell program language and developed by international teams of researchers, programmers, and engineers. It claims that it’s “the first blockchain platform to evolve out of a scientific philosophy and a research-first driven approach.”
One of the main selling points of the currency and the platform is the fact that it’s all open-source and completely decentralized – anyone can join, contribute and improve upon the platform.
How Does Cardano Work?
Cardano is an open-source, smart contact platform which makes the ADA cryptocurrency quite similar to Ethereum. The creators have even made a note to call the currency ‘the next Ethereum’ in their marketing. However, unlike Ethereum, it’s a decentralized blockchain, the first of its kind to be based on academic and scientific research.
The platform, Cardano, uses the programming language Haskell which allows for a lot of fault tolerance and margin for error. This is what makes the platform so malleable and flexible, while also avoiding such events as the DAO debacle that happened to Ethereum a while back.
Cardano functions on two layers – the first one is called the Cardano Settlement Layer, or the CSL, while the other is the Cardano Computation Layer or CCL. This is what enables the smart contacts that the platform is known for – the separation between these two layers. The CSL operates with the ADA coins while the CCL runs the smart contracts.
Due to this separation, each layer can be upgraded separately from the other, creating soft forks instead of hard forks. The layer responsible for computing can also be upgraded without affecting the ADA coins – this means that the transaction system can be made to fit the specific laws of different countries without any changes to the currency itself.
This also allows for a level of anonymity in the transactions without breaking any laws. It’s not as good as those offered by anonymity-focused coins, like PIVX, Monero, DASH, and Zcash, since the transactions can still be traced, but it’s better than most.
Cardano uses the RINA (Recursive Internet Architecture) protocol for scaling its vast network, and it allows for customized increments to be added to heterogeneous networks. The creators of Cardano intend to develop it until its able to compete even with the TCP/IP protocol, the main protocol used for the exchange of data on the internet. Only time will tell if they succeed at it.
Cardano also uses a mining algorithm named Ouroboros which works on a Proof of Stake system rather than the usual Proof of Work system that most cryptocurrencies use. This eliminates the need for a protocol that consumes a lot of energy for processing transactions.
With a proof of work system, each miner competes with others to solve problems and create the next block, thus earning currency. With a proof of stake, a semi-random holder of the currency is picked to solve the next block, with those who have more currency being more likely to be chosen. In this system, you gain currency just by holding it, and you gain more the more you have.
There’s more to it, but the Ouroboros algorithm is a bit too complicated to describe in full without taking up too much space. If you want to know more, here’s a great informative video on it, but be warned – it’s an hour long.
What are the Downsides?
Well, for starters, the Cardano currency, ADA, is available on only one type of wallet, the Daedalus wallet, developed from scratch with the intention of being the best cryptocurrency wallet around. It’s almost as good as it claims to be, but if you happen to prefer something else and want to own the Cardano cryptocurrency, you’re out of luck.
Also, the coin is a bit unstable at the moment. If you’re looking for a secure short-term investment, this is not the place to be. However, if you want to invest long-term, this might just be one of the best coins you could choose at the moment. It’s all up to you.
Overall, the Cardano cryptocurrency is one of the most modular currencies on the market right now, and it seems to have a bright future if it keeps getting upgraded and improved at the current pace. There are a few downsides to it but it’s worth keeping an eye on at least – it has the potential to become the best cryptocurrency available in the near future. It already is one of the best.