DagHub is a fiat on-ramp for the fast, feeless and minerless cryptocurrencies: Nano, Iota and Byteball! As the name foreshadows, we love DAG technology and we’re committed to provide a frictionless experience in buying and selling the aforementioned digital assets.
A few weeks ago, we announced what we’re doing on Reddit, and we were shocked to see the results! In merely 24 hours, there were more than 1,000 thumbs-up, 5,200 unique visitors on daghub.io and roughly 700 people subscribed to the newsletter.
We didn’t invest a penny in marketing, so we‘re obliged to say a huge THANK YOU to everyone who upvoted the posts! You’re just amazing 🙏
Hundreds of questions popped out in our inbox, so we decided to write this article to provide an ubiquitous response and also showcase DagHub’s vision.
What Is DAG? What Is So Special About It?
DAG is the acronym for Directed Acyclic Graph and, if you’re a computer scientist or a mathematician, you know very well this isn’t a new concept. What is innovative is the fact that its power is now harnessed in Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT), after a few people observed back in 2015 that blockchains aren’t scalable as a means of payment.
99.9% of all cryptocurrencies have transaction fees and this is a natural phenomenon, as Bitcoin, the first blockchain application ever, was designed using a Proof of Work algorithm, which requires third-party miners to verify payments. Ethereum later implemented smart contracts, which are undoubtedly one of the most disruptive technologies in the crypto space. The problem is you have to pay GAS when you move money on the network.
We’ll refer to Bitcoin and Ethereum, because they are the most popular, yet the arguments apply proportionally in any other blockchain.
A few cents wouldn’t mind anyone, but the issue is that fees are relative to the coin’s price and recent throughput. Hence when the cryptocurrency market boomed in December 2017, you were supposed to pay ~50$ in Bitcoin and ~2$ in Ethereum, had you wanted to send a quick payment. Quite a massive increase from the 0.001$-0.01$ range in 2016.
Indeed, we’re still early days! Yet this is a double-edged sword: Bitcoin and Ethereum will improve their technology over time, however fees will grow with every new user who joins the network, as they have to incentivize miners and future stakers after Proof of Stake is implemented.
Bitcoin will definitely maintain its reputation of being the digital gold and Ethereum will be the main platform for smart contracts. However, using them for micropayments or day-to-day transactions seems like tapping your right ear with your left hand.
That’s why we should start using DAGs:
- No miners.
- No fees.
- Instant transaction times.
Let’s continue by taking a closer look on our chosen cryptocurrencies.
Why Only Nano, Iota and Byteball?
Out of the total 1545 (as of the time of writing) cryptocurrencies listed on CoinMarketCap, they have the best odds of becoming the de-facto payment systems in the future.
Nano, Iota and Byteball share a common architecture, namely a DAG, but each one has its own unique features.
A strong project, with a focus on peer to peer payments. Launched in 2015, it has since proven to be a solid tech, as it does exactly what it says: instant and feeless transactions, up to 7000 per second.
We applaud Colin LeMahieu & the team for their ingenuity & collective effort. It’s a beautiful piece of software and it would be a lie to say we weren’t inspired by their motto:
“Do one thing and do it well”
In Nano, each user has his own blockchain, and each transaction is a block. There are two types of transactions:
Intuitively, we can observe how the DAG is formed: when you send XRB, the recipient’s wallet generates a receive transaction, thus creating a directed edge between your blockchains.
The network’s security is handled by a Delegated Proof of Staking algorithm. This means that a number of trusted individuals, called representatives, have to “stake” a large amount of Nano and verify transactions for others and, if they are fraudulent, they lose their holdings (and the double-spendings are nevertheless dismissed).
Observation: Nano is the new name of the coin, as the project rebranded on the 31st of January 2018. It was previously called RaiBlocks.
As you might’ve guessed, it’s a project focused on IoT(Internet of Things). Iota believes in a world where machines talk to each other and perform a plethora of micropayments.
Would it make sense to pay a two-digit fee each time a self-driving car uses an API? Or to create a bank account for each drone in the world? Not really, and these are exactly the type of problems Iota aims to solve.
We know the wallet had a couple of UX issues in the past (0 balances, rebroadcasted transactions), but we’re confident the future is bright. We’ve been in touch with Charlie Varley, who’s working on the Trinity Wallet, and development is going great.
In Iota, the Directed Acyclic Graph is called the Tangle and consensus is reached in a very interesting way: when you issue a transaction, you are the miner, and you perform Proof of Work on two other previous transactions.
Byteball Bytes (GBYTE)
Although this is the only in the list not being feeless, it still remains a fast, minerless and scalable cryptocurrency. That’s because fees are deterministic and you cannot jump the transaction queue (as compared to blockchains, where anyone who pays more is verified faster).
In February 2018, the fee per each transaction was around 541 bytes or $0.000037. Even if the project would hit a one trillion market cap, fees will still remain under a cent at roughly $0.0074.
This is the first DAG project to implement smart contracts. They have a cool bot store, where you can do things like purchasing flight insurance or sports betting.
The network is secured using a “12 witness” approach, which basically means you pick 12 addresses from a list of trusted participants (with their real-world identity verified) who will watch over your transactions. The main chain will always be polarized to their decisions, thus avoiding double-spendings.
Byteball is not as popular as Nano and Iota, yet we believe is a fantastic project with true intrinsic value and a top lead developer. Some might not see it clearly, but smart contracts will become a fundamental technology for our daily lives in the not-so-distant future and it’s great to have multiple implementations.
We’re fully aware that we barely touched the tip of the iceberg with the previous presentations, so in the following months we’ll write a dedicated article for each cryptocurrency.
Why Don’t You Do Bitcoin? You’re Gonna Lose Customers!!
We were rather surprised to see so many people asking this. There are a couple of reasons why we don’t do it:
- It’s outside our core value of becoming a company focused on DAG technology
- There are already enough exchanges
If there will be an unsaturated demand to exchange BTC for XRB, IOTA or GBYTE, we’ll do our best to satisfy those customers. However, at the beginning, the goal is to become a fiat ramp-on for DAGs and that’s it. Do one thing and do it well.
When Do You Launch?
First off, we’d like to mention the fact that apart from securing daghub.io, another top priority for us is to comply with all regulations in place and maintain a close communication channel with FCA.
We aim to go live in June.
However, cryptocurrencies aren’t currently regulated in the UK. If there will be any significant changes in the legal framework during the following months, we’ll reschedule our launch and apply to get the new license.
Apart From GBP, Will You Also Have EUR and USD Pairs?
Although expanding to other countries in Europe and adding more currencies are important milestones on the roadmap, at early stage we simply want to become a trusted company in the UK. So no, we won’t have EUR and USD in the first months after launch.
Will Cards Be Accepted?
Yes, they will.
Do You Run an ICO?
No, not in the near future.
1. “Blockchain is also a DAG” Naysayers
We’ve had people telling us it doesn’t make sense to focus only on Nano, Iota and Byteball when all blockchains could be considered DAGs.
Indeed, the blockchain as we know it could also be called a Directed Acyclic Graph, because you can view the blocks as immutable nodes (block A always refers to block B and not the other way around).
Here’s the catch though:
A blockchain is a DAG but a DAG is not always a blockchain.
It’s about perspective. We named the company “DagHub” because, for the first time in the DLT world, there are a few coins who proficiently use all the features of a DAG.
The fundamental status-quo changes between blockchain and DAG are clearly explained throughout the article.
2. Bitcoin’s Lightning Network
Others argued that the Lightning Network (LN) will make altcoins obsolete. We politely disagree with them.
Firstly, we reiterate the idea that we’re also huge supporters of Bitcoin and Ethereum. The point is that we believe we shouldn’t use them for micropayments.
We view LN as a fantastic update on the Bitcoin network, and a very much needed one. December 2017 was an impressive month for cryptocurrencies, but it was clear in hindsight that we need solid upgrades. It just doesn’t make sense to spend around 10$ per transaction.
LN will definitely lower those fees, allowing smaller payments to be made. However, it doesn’t come without incumbents:
- There are several points of failure, as you have to be routed through a distributed network of payment hubs and nodes
- You can’t pay someone who’s not online
- The funds in the peers multi-signature wallets might not be sufficient to transfer large amounts of BTC
Team and Community
- Paul Berg: Founder & Lead Engineer
- Alex Aves: Marketing
- Razvan Apostu: Graphic Design
- ViableSoft: Frontend Development
These are the people who supported the project the most and continued to raise awareness about us after they saw the posts on Reddit.
We cannot thank you enough guys, you’re awesome!
WE’RE HIRING 🚀
We’re looking for a DevOps engineer with previous experience in security-sensitive applications to join us (equity options available)! Preferably in London or willing to relocate.
We’re right on track! A few sneak peeks:
Happy to receive your feedback or help. Join us on Slack!
Vision On the Long Term
Our main goal is to become the most popular way to buy and sell Nano, Iota and Byteball on a worldwide scale, but we also believe education plays a key role in decentralizing the world.
That’s why we’ll create DagDrops: informational & networking events, where someone from our team will hold a presentation about DAG technology, followed by an informal Q&A session. At the moment, we cannot disclose more about the exact format of these events, but stay tuned to our newsletterand follow our updates on Twitter!