Charles Hoskinson, the CEO of IOHK, believes that this will be the decade of Cardano. With a successful incentivized testnet launch and over 500 stake pools already launched, Hoskinson said that Cardano was ramping up its efforts to commercialize the tech they’ve been developing for the past three years.
2020 will be the most important year for Cardano yet
After successfully deploying the incentivized testnet for the Shelley era of Cardano, IOHK seems to have gone into overdrive when it comes to developing its ambitious blockchain project. With over 500 staking pools already deployed on the incentivized testnet, Charles Hoskinson, the CEO of IOHK, believes major success is just around the corner for Cardano.
In a YouTube AMA on Jan. 3, 2020, Hoskinson gave one of his lengthy updates about the current state of Cardano and future plans for IOHK, Cardano Foundation, and Emurgo. Hoskinson said the date of the AMA had a special significance—it coincided with Bitcoin‘s 11th birthday. He noted that the world’s first cryptocurrency was very important both for him and for Cardano, as it gave birth to a whole new industry that’s already changing the world:
“Bitcoin is a gateway drug to our industry.”
“We have to remember where we came from—we came from Bitcoin,” he said later in the AMA.
According to Hoskinson, the past decade brought so much fundamental change that it’s quite possible the next one will end with things like commercial quantum computers and private space travel becoming the norm.
However, the biggest change will be brought on by cryptocurrencies, he said, as it will bring about changes not only in industries such as journalism and funding but also be a driving force that will boost the economies of developing countries and bring their people out of poverty.
Fundamental changes to the world won’t bypass Cardano, either. Hoskinson said that the Cardano team plans on reaching unprecedented success in the next ten years.
“This is the decade of Cardano,” he said in the AMA, adding that serious work is being done to make Cardano the most predominant force in the cryptocurrency space by the end of the 2020s.
Hoskinson believes that IOHK’s obsession with getting the technology right is the right approach to ensure future development. From there, he said, they only have to make sure that the technology they developed has the right commercial utilization. With a platform that’s built to handle billions of transactions each day, Hoskinson believes that achieving over a billion users isn’t all that far-fetched.
“Cardano is a platform for solutions”
One of IOHK’s main focuses will be to make sure that the tech they have developed so far and continue developing in the next decade has the right commercial utilization. Without a useful product, the blockchain itself and all the research that has gone into it would have been for nothing, he explained.
Luckily, IOHK has a very good understanding of what needs to be done to build a functioning, global, interconnected system. The reason why both Hoskinson and IOHK seem so optimistic about the future of their product is the fact that they have intentionally made it slow and simple.
“The reason why Bitcoin was so successful is that Satoshi created a simple system with great incentives,” he explained, adding that Cardano employed incentives in its testnet in order to facilitate the growth of the network. However, he noted that despite the continuous research that has gone into incentives, Cardano is not an academic project.
All of the efforts that have gone into perfecting staking and incentives were part of IOHK’s “aggressive” commercialization of Cardano. It’s a
Hoskinson also took the time to comment on the rivalry between blockchain projects. He said that the division in the crypto industry benefits nobody, as he believes there can be no single solution to the problems cryptocurrencies went on to solve. There won’t be a single global cryptocurrency or one blockchain to rule them all, Hoskinson said. Instead, he believes the future will be an internet of interconnected blockchains and value where everyone will have to work with each other.
“We either succeed together or fail together,” he said.
Major releases and important projects coming in 2020 for Cardano
When it comes to concrete announcements about upcoming releases, Hoskinson was reluctant to give any specific dates or information. However, he shared some of the plans IOHK and the Cardano Foundation have for the first half of 2020, revealing that the company has only ramped up its efforts since the deployment of the incentivized testnet for Shelley.
January alone will bring a lot of updates to Cardano. Hoskinson said that apart from the Haskell wallet backend, the Haskell Shelley testnet will also be released in the following weeks. The mainnet for Shelley, while scheduled to be released “soon,” will most likely go live sometime in February.
The first quarter of 2020 will also be a busy one of the Plutus team at IOHK—Hoskinson said that they would be “dialing up” the Plutus team and ramping up their work on Goguen. The goal of this operation will be to make it easier for people to write and deploy dapps on Cardano in the following months.
The most important thing that will happen this year will be the development and deployment of succinct non-interactive zero-knowledge proofs SNARKs. Sonic, Cardano’s own SNARK deloped in 2018, will be one of the main topics discussed in the upcoming Cardano summit in Edinborough at the end of the month. With an entire team dedicated only to implementing SNARKs and Sonic, there will definitely be a lot to discuss.
There are new papers being written within IOHK, Hoskinson said, revealing that most of them will focus on interoperability. More information about these papers and the research that has gone into them will be announced soon, he added.
Another topic that will be important for Cardano development in the following year will be private computation. Hoskinson said that private smart contracts could have a wide variety of uses, especially in things like medical records, which is why Cardano wants to have a working product as soon as possible.
To keep the Cardano community in touch with what’s going on behind the scenes, product managers will publish regular, monthly updates where they’ll go into detail about what’s been going on both in IOHK and the Cardano Foundation. The first product manager update most likely won’t be published this month, he said but will be regular starting in February.
With the first draft of the rebranding report from McCann Dublin expected by the end of the month, Cardano seems to have taken its commercialization promises seriously. The ambitious blockchain project is gearing up for what could become its best year yet.
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