What is EOS and why all the hype?
Commonly known as Ethereum’s biggest rival, EOS has had a very busy 2017.
A lot of cryptocurrency projects were and numerous ICOs were launched in different sectors of the economy this year but only a few Cryptos were able to keep up with the jet-speed pace of the industry.
Among this few elite band of cryptocurrencies stands EOS. EOS was founded by Dan Larrimer and it was announced at the Consensus 2017 event held in New York. Larrimer also had a hand in creating BitShares, Steem and Graphene technologies.
EOS is a blockchain-based cryptocurrency which is essentially like Ethereum (details to come). It launched its ICO on June 26, 2017. Its code is available on GitHub at https://github.com/EOSIO.
Features and Value Proposition of EOS
So why is EOS considered the Ethereum killer? How does EOS improve on the ETH model? EOS has a lot of important features, performance optimizations and also made a lot of improvements compared to Ethereum. They are:
Parallel Processing: This makes it easier to perform operations in simultaneous, quicker transaction speeds and even better scalability.
Room for Future Advancement: Presently, the EOS software gives room for a 5% inflation rate, which would be used in improving the network further.
A Constitution: This consists of a collection of rules and guidelines which every user has agreed to abide by. They form the regulatory basis of EOS block mining.
Decentralised Operating System: EOS functions like a decentralised operating system. What this implies is that developers can build decentralised applications (commonly known as DApps) on EOS.
As a developer on the EOS chain as long as you have the EOS coins, you can use part of the server resources. To build and run DApps, it is necessary for developers to possess EOS coins before they can be granted license to the EOS blockchain. However, the coins will not be used as a sort of payment for the server resources, all they need to do is show proof of having EOS coins.
The decentralised operating system will be hosted on servers which will also create blocks. Servers hosting EOS applications will get their main incentive in form of block rewards (that is, they will be allowed to mine EOS). All applications running on this decentralised operating system will communicate freely with each other, but there will be contingencies put in place for “firewall” applications.
Decentralised applications have common features such as user login and details, user interfaces, database and file management. This means that frameworks and libraries can be created within EOS, which applications can share to make development a lot faster, improve the security and make it easy to write the code. For instance, decentralised applications can create secure databases and host their files on EOS.
EOS uses a performance-based language known as Web Assembly, which they adopted through a lot of testing and benchmarking. At first, the favorite was Wren but when Dan ran a test with an empty contract, the transaction speed was around 1000 transactions per second. In terms of performance, this was very low compared to what Dan had in mind for his project.
He eventually came across Web Assembly and adopted it for EOS. Web Assembly enables web developers to compile a lot of programming languages (e.g. C, C++, Rust, Solidity), which will enable them to quickly port a lot of codebases over to EOS – as long as it’s done correctly.
Ethereum Or EOS?
The EOS blockchain will allow developers to create decentralised applications which will be interactive and user-friendly. User experience and interaction on Ethereum is not up to par, which is one of the many things EOS has improved on.
EOS’ direct rival, Ethereum, collects a fee (GAS) – no matter how small – on every transaction performed on the platform. EOS will not do so. This will increase adoption.
Also, EOS is much faster in handling transactions. It’s also more scalable, being able to reach millions of transactions per second, compared to Ethereum (and Bitcoin) which only handles a few thousand transactions per second.
Because EOS has a constitution every transaction performed on the blockchain must follow set rules. There will be no deviations on user transactions, ensuring an open and provable blockchain. This creates stability and trust in the chain.
EOS Smart Contracts
Just like Ethereum, EOS has smart contract capabilities, though it’s more extensive. EOS differs from Ethereum in that while Ethereum is more hard for developers to code, EOS makes it dead easy to build apps.
Before a developer can build an app on Ethereum, s/he must first write the code, then change it to machine language. Only then can they proceed to build the app.
It’s much easier with EOS. You don’t even need smart contracts to interact with apps on the EOS blockchain. This implies that users have no need to pay transaction fees before they can interact with DApps on EOS.
For instance, it makes perfect sense for Steemit. I mean, who wants to spend money to write and publish content (on the open Internet?!)
EOS provides basic functions on its platform such as database management, account management and other services so developers don’t have to rewrite the code for those functions.
On Ethereum, you’d have to rewrite all of the code for the standard features. All the basic functions are already a part of the EOS blockchain.
The major disadvantage is that it could take a long time to create an EOS Blockchain, a lot of things can happen in the mean time.
EOS Tokens and ICO
ERC-20 like tokens can be created on EOS, which implies that EOS can host ICOs.
The EOS ICO runs for about 12 months (actually, it’s 341 days). This was done to boost audience reach and distribution, which should increase adoption.
Most ICOs and token distributions only have a few participants. However, the EOS Token was distributed in such a way as to allow people who want(ed) to participate enough time to make a decision, and also allow the general public to follow up on the development of the EOS.IO Software before deciding whether or not they want to purchase EOS Tokens.
A total of one billion tokens were made available, which were and/or would be distributed as follows:
- Two hundred million tokens (20 percent of the total amount) were distributed across 5 days, starting from June 26, 2017 at 13:00 UTC and ending on July 1, 2017 at 12:59:59 UTC.
- Seven hundred million tokens (70 percent of the total amount) were divided equally into 350 consecutive 23-hour periods, which means 2,000,000 EOS tokens (two million tokens) would be distributed every 23 hours, from July 1, 2017 at 13:00:00 UTC.
- One hundred million tokens (10 percent of the total amount) will be reserved for block.one and will not be available for trading or transfer to other users on the Ethereum network.
EOS’s ICO raised a whopping $150 million in the first 5 days, setting a new record for most funds raised in a short period. Also, EOS was made available for trading on the Bitfinex exchange, boosting its price by over 200% in just a few hours! The ICO ends on June 1, 2018.
A lot of people are branding EOS “the Ethereum killer”, but what really matters is that EOS is definitely at the frontline of decentralised applications and scalability in blockchain technology.
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