An ICON Milestone

ICONSENSUS officially kicks off with the first governance votes

Welcome to the first issue of RHIZOME Wire!

A Historic Vote

This week marked an important event in the progress of the ICON Project: the first ever governance vote. 

The question at hand was whether or not two “zombie P-Reps” - Noris and Gilga Capital - should be removed as nodes. Due to internal issues, both teams lost control and access to their original node, requiring them to re-register as P-Reps under a new node.

There was some original concern expressed that disqualifying a P-Rep still receiving an ICX delegation (as the zombie nodes were) would lead to those stakers having to endure the 6% ICX burn as a result of disqualification. Once it was clear that the 6% burn had been suspended during the first month of ICONSENSUS entirely (for both productivity and disqualifications), the vote passed with minimal opposition. 

Overall, this process worked as it should without any technical issues. However, from a process standpoint, some expressed frustration that little time had been provided for discussion - either internally among P-Reps, or externally within the ICON community as a whole - prior to the opening of the voting window.

Once a proposal is submitted, P-Reps have one term (about 24 hours) to vote. Since it’s possible for P-Reps to change every term, it makes sense that a voting period would only last for one term. Unfortunately, such a time frame does not allow much time for public debate. 

As more votes occur in the future, it’s the hope of many that ICONists and P-Reps will be given sufficient heads up that a proposal will be forthcoming to ensure adequate public and private debate.

Meanwhile, in addition to the removal of the two “zombie nodes,” ICONVIET has also proposed the removal of other P-Reps for various other reasons. Be sure to take a look at their full list of proposals if you haven’t already, as they’ll be voted on in the coming weeks. 

The Launch of ICON CORE

Also this week, P-Rep teams RHIZOME, UBIK Capital, ICONation, and Sharpn jointly announced the launch of “ICON CORE”, “a developer-focused portal and toolset designed to improve the process of onboarding developers on the ICON blockchain.”

The release goes on to further describe the project:

“ICON offers a variety of SDKs (software development kits) in various languages including Python, Javascript, Java, Swift, C#, C++, and PHP. The goal of ICON CORE is to extend the basic documentation available on by providing a well-documented codebase for a variety of real-world applications of the ICON blockchain in various programming languages.

The use case is clear. Imagine you are a Swift developer who is interested in developing on the ICON blockchain. You see a Python-based tutorial, but can’t find the equivalent material written for Swift. At this point, you may choose to either learn a little Python, or move on to another task. With ICON CORE, the goal is to remove the potential for friction in the learning process, and to make development on ICON more accessible for developers of all backgrounds.”

An often overlooked yet critical need for the ICON Project to succeed is a willingness for developers to build applications, tools, and projects on the protocol. Without an adequate number of developers, the long-term possibility for success of the project drops off significantly. While there are already a number of incentives available for developers, ICON CORE will play a critical role in fostering accessibility among developers.

MetrICX Released

Earlier this week, RHIZOME was proud to announce the official release of MetrICX, our first mobile application dedicated to providing a more convenient way for ICONists to track rewards, P-Rep statistics, I_Score, and other metrics. 

Thus far, the app has received positive reviews from users. As of now, it’s only available for Android users, but will be available for iOS in the near future. Be sure to download it today if you haven’t already!

Meanwhile, we’re already hard at work on adding new features, including some requested specifically by the community. Stay tuned for updates!

UBIK puts forth five proposals

Ubik Capital, one of the top P-Rep teams, has put forth five policy proposals to be discussed among the ICON community:

  • Long-term staking incentives

  • Anti vote-buying

  • Increase the number of block producing P-Reps

  • Addition of a 3-month report requirement for P-Reps

  • Addition of a requirement for all P-Reps to run nodes, and process for removal of P-Reps who do not run nodes

To join the discussion and learn more about these proposals, be sure to visit the Network Proposal section of the ICON Community forums, where each proposal has it’s own dedicated thread.

More ICON News

Korea’s Shinhan Bank to build blockchain platform for SME loans - This story was a bit under the radar, but it could have implications for ICON. Why? Because Shinhan Bank is one of the ecosystem partners participating in the my-ID Alliance. While the article doesn’t state what blockchain technology their loan platform is using (it could be ICONLOOP, but it also could not be), it does show that this major financial player is interested in blockchain beyond just words. From my perspective, it shows an increased willingness to actually adopt my-ID in the future, as they’ve already taken concrete steps to incorporate blockchain into their internal systems. While the Alliance itself was a good sign, it’s still just an alliance at the end of the day. Demonstrated willingness and capacity to implement blockchain is a far more significant signal.

ICONLOOP Chief Communication Officer Josh Choi recently contributed an op-ed to the Korean-language financial news weekly Daehan Financial Newspaper. You can either read a translated version, or The Iconist summary of what was said.

Foundry Box Media (a P-Rep candidate), has added new features to their tool, ICONalyst:

  • P-Rep email notifications for network proposals

  • Expanded & clarified governance and network proposal information

  • Additional P-Rep profile updates

Click here to view ICONalyst.

iBriz-Iconosphere (a P-Rep candidate) has written a thoughtful article entitled “Circular Economy to Increase the Value of Tokens.” Here’s an excerpt:

The term “circular economy” most commonly refers to the idea of recycling of products and resources. This is in contrast to the more traditional linear economy which is based on the idea of — make, use and dispose. The motive behind circular economy is to maximize resources.

This same concept of “reuse” can be applied to the blockchain economy like ICON. If the token/coin (ICX) is considered a type of resource, how can it be recycled within the ecosystem to get maximum value. The expanded use of the coin will result in greater demand and therefore increased value.

Be sure to give the entire article a read!

Reliant Node (P-Rep candidate) announced that they were opening the final stages of ledger support for MyIconWallet, “a web based wallet allowing you to send ICX, stake, unstake and vote for your favourite P-Reps.” MyIconWallet code is all open-sourced and available here.

Blockchain News

Bitcoin Volume of South Korea’s Top Exchanges Struggles to Recover. Why? - Although this article begins with a pessimistic premise, it concludes with optimism: “With the government moving towards establishing clear regulatory frameworks, the South Korean cryptocurrency market has the potential to expand throughout the years to come with the support from regional governments.” Be sure to read the entire thing!

Coinshares releases 2019 Crypto Trends Report - At more than 100 pages, this is a lengthy yet informative overview of the cryptocurrency industry as a whole. For a cliffnotes summary, be sure to read through this thread from Meltem Demirors.

Binance plans to support all 180 currencies for its direct fiat-to-crypto trading facility -

Cryptocurrency exchange Binance has plans to support all 180 fiat currencies of the world for its direct fiat-to-crypto trading facility. Binance CEO Changpeng "CZ" Zhao announced the news at the exchange’s “super meetup” event in Singapore on Tuesday, saying: “One of the key things I want to do for the next few months – six to nine months or so – is to get those other 180 [fiat currencies] onboarded onto”

Anonymous fund plans to invest and donate $75M in bitcoin to startups working on enhancing privacy

The Unknown Fund, organized by a group of anonymous people, plans to invest and donate $75 million in bitcoin (BTC) to those startups working directly or indirectly on enhancing privacy.