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Dec 14 2017

Fiber: Blockchain’s Real Future

Bitcoin was supposed to usher in a new economy built on decentralized blockchain technology – but it didn’t. And it can’t. Bitcoin has major technical flaws that prevent it from ever achieving its original goals. Built on faulty concepts and manipulated to the point of corruption, this cryptocurrency is incapable of creating the new world its users hoped for.

Skycoin developers realized that Bitcoin was destined to fail, and set out to create a solution. The result is Fiber, a third-generation blockchain platform that delivers speed, security, privacy, and a true decentralized blockchain network. Consensus on Fiber is determined by the community rather than by a few individuals. It’s a technically superior platform that fixes Bitcoin’s issues and paves the way for blockchain’s better future.

Fiber Eliminates Fees, Centralization, and Waste

The crux of Bitcoin’s problems is its mining system. Miners fight to control the network through transactions fees. By spamming transactions, they hold the network hostage for fees to drive the fee price up. Meanwhile, miners consolidate to form a small number of centralized pools that control the entire network. In this way, Bitcoin encourages a centralized mining setup that’s antagonistic towards the community as a whole.

At Skycoin, we wanted to get rid of that. We eliminated the mining reward and transaction fee. Instead, Fiber’s consensus is based on the will of the network – a “web of trust.”

Fiber’s consensus algorithm is called Obelisk. It creates a web of trust in which each node has a public key, and each node subscribes to other nodes. For example, if you know someone personally, you can add their public key to your trust list. Your nodes can then subscribe to each other and publish messages. Through this process, nodes can reach a global consensus.

One big advantage of Fiber’s web of trust is that it’s environmentally friendly. It could be run on a 30-watt cell phone processor. To fully appreciate this advantage, consider the massive resource drain produced by Bitcoin’s mining network rigs: over 32 terawatt hours in 2017. That’s about as much as the entire country of Serbia. As reported by Digiconomist, Bitcoin uses enough energy to power 3 million homes. To put this in even more striking perspective, even credit card giant Visa uses only enough energy to power 50,000 homes.

The major culprit of Bitcoin’s wasteful drain is the Proof-of-Work algorithm. Whenever a block is added in the blockchain, PoW goes through a laborious, slow, and processing-heavy set of requirements to ensure the validity of the blocks. Obelisk, by contrast, replaces PoW with a more efficient, faster consensus process.

Fiber Powers Open Internet and Innovation

Not only does Fiber preserve resources, it provides its users with valuable services. The added value comes in the form of Skywire, a decentralized ISP. Skywire users spend and receive Skycoins for consuming or forwarding resources. It’s a self-sufficient, peer-to-peer network that eliminates the need for corporate ISPs and puts users in control of their internet experience.

Since it’s open-source, the innovative technology that powers Fiber is available to all. As a true decentralized blockchain network, Fiber has countless applications. Companies are already using it to build their businesses.

One example is Solar Bankers, an energy provider. Solar Bankers uses Fiber’s blockchain to decentralize the energy sector. With Solar Bankers, users can generate solar electricity and trade it directly with one another.

Solar Bankers and other companies choose to build their currencies on Fiber technology because Fiber offers best-in-class encryption, speed, and reliability. Plus, it’s absolutely private.

Fiber lets users create their own cryptocurrencies using a common platform. Unlike Ethereum, Fiber provides a private blockchain that isn’t shared among other currencies. It uses improved encryption and a unique method for verifying transactions that makes it immutable and immune to 51% attacks.

One advantage of the private blockchain is enhanced transaction speed. Businesses need a dedicated blockchain to prevent slowdowns caused by other uses of the network. Ethereum recently struggled with this problem with the CryptoKittes craze, which now accounts for over 10% of network traffic. CryptoKitties has resulted in a dramatic slowdown of transactions on ETH. Fiber’s dedicated blockchain prevents this sort of thing from happening.

Fiber represents the real future of blockchain. It’s a truly decentralized network where transactions are fast and secure. It supports Skywire, an alternate ISP that gives users control over their use of the internet. It’s energy-efficient and streamlined. Best of all, it offers community consensus through its Obelisk algorithm. Fiber is empowering users by providing what Bitcoin couldn’t: a decentralized, peer-to-peer internet economy.