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RSK & RIF Rating Report

Abstract : RSK is a smart contract platform developed by RSK Labs. It is secured by Bitcoin hashing power via merged mining with Bitcoin. Then the RSK Labs team established RIF Labs company and developed RIF OS to provide services (data storage, name services, faster payment processing, etc.) they need in order to realize their vision of creating an Internet of value and a new-generation financial system.

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1 Project Background

Nakamoto published the Bitcoin White Paper in 2008 and mined the first bitcoin in 2009. Bitcoin can only implement a very limited portion of the so-called “smart contracts” (a concept introduced back in 1993 by Nick Szabo).

In early 2013, Sergio Demian Lerner, created the first Turing-complete cryptocurrency, Qixcoin, which in theory could implement the full functionality of smart contracts. It was designed to support decentralized poker games and later evolved into Nimblecoin. By the end of the same year Vitalik Buterin proposed a another turing complete platform called Ethereum which he crowdfunded and started to develop during 2014.

In October 2014 after some conversations with Nick Szabo about enabling full Smart Contract capabilities for the Bitcoin Ecosystem, Diego Gutierrez Zaldivar, contacted Sergio Lerner start discussing potential collaborations.

By mid 2015 Sergio and Diego decided to join forces and give life to Rootstock (RSK) the first Turing Complete Smart Contract platform secured by the Bitcoin Network. Almost at the same time Ethereum went live.

At the end of 2015 the first RSK Technical White Paper was released. In early 2016 the first funding was received from Bitmain, Digital Currency Group and Coinsilium and RSK Labs (now IOV Labs) was founded to enable the implementation of the RSK Smart Protocol.

In January 2018 the RSK mainnet was launched. Currently the RSK blockchain is fully operational with a two-way-peg to Bitcoin, merged mining, transfer, and with full support for Solidity Smart Contract and Web3/RPC interfaces.

In November 2018, RIF Labs released the RIF OS ( Root Infrastructure Framework Open Standard ) and RIF Token on the RSK smart contract platform. RIF Labs purchased RSK Labs.

In May 2019 RIF Lumino Network -an integral part of the RIF Payments Protocol- was launched, and RIF Labs was renamed to IOV Labs to differentiate the organization (IOV) from its platforms (RSK, RIF) and services.

2 Vision

It is a situation shared across most emerging economies around the world that only a small fraction of the population has access to proper financial services. IOV Labs members, who come from corners of the world where they have experienced first-hand challenges that successive economic crises and inefficient and incompetent governments present to the less-favored believe that the functionality of smart contracts, combined with the security and broad network effect of the Bitcoin Network, can truly transform and improve the lives of millions financially excluded individuals around the world.

3 Technology Assessment

3.1RSK & RIF OS Overview

We can regard RSK and RIF OS as different layers. Bitcoin is the first layer, or the store of value; RSK is the second layer that brings business logic; and RIF OS is the third layer that provides infrastructure services.

RSK is a side chain of Bitcoin using Bitcoin’s hashing power for block production. This process is called merged mining. In this way, RSK’s security is guaranteed with Bitcoin hashing power. Besides, RSK inherits several key designs of Ethereum, such as its account format, VM and Web3 interface, therefore it is highly compatible with Ethereum compilers, toolkits and DApps.

RSK has a two-way-peg to Bitcoin. When Bitcoins are transferred into the RSK blockchain, they become “Smart Bitcoins” (RBTC). In the RSK network, RBTC is used to pay transaction fees and contract processing fees. Smart Bitcoins are equivalent can be regarded as bitcoins in the RSK blockchain, and can be converted back in bitcoins at any time at no additional cost[1].

RIF OS is a unified set of protocols, rules and interfaces based on RSK. It is an off-chain development stack aimed at removing the barriers hindering the adoption of blockchain technology and promote the development of a fair and decentralized infrastructure services market.

3.2 RSK

Merged Mining

Merged mining is a process of mining two cryptocurrencies with the same algorithm simultaneously without consuming additional hashing power. In BTC-RSK merged mining, BTC is the Parent Chain while RSK is the Auxiliary Chain. In general, the difficulty of block production is lower on the Auxiliary Chain than on the Parent Chain, so there are three possible situations in BTC-RSK merged mining process:

  1. The merged miner finds a solution where the difficulty is too low to provide a valid hash and proof of work for either chain, so he inserts a new nonce value and rehashes.
  2. The merged miner finds a solution where the proof of work has been achieved for the auxiliary chain, but not for the parent chain.
  3. The merged miner finds a solution that meets the difficulty requirements for both the parent and the auxiliary blockchains. He can generate blocks and win rewards on both blockchains.

RSK creates new blocks via the merged mining with BTC and it is protected by the BTC hashing power. The merged mining process does not cause extra workload to BTC developers. Miners are usually willing to take part in the merged mining as it does not cost them extra hashing power but brings them additional rewards. They merely have to complete several configuration settings with hardly any marginal costs.

RSK divides its merge-mining development process into the following phases:

  • Bootstrapping phase: merge-mining is below 30% of Bitcoin hashrate.
  • Stable phase: merge-mining is between 30% and 60% of Bitcoin hashrate.
  • Mature phase: merge-mining is higher than 60% of Bitcoin hashrate.

According to the RSK white paper updated in late January 2019, RSK had left behind its bootstrapping phase, and there were more than 40% of Bitcoin hashing power engaged in RSK merge-mining.

Ethereum Compatibility

RSK Virtual Machine (RVM) is the fork of Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM), so Ethereum smart contracts can run flawlessly on RSK.

In future network upgrades, the RSK community plans to improve the VM performance substantially. One proposal is to emulate the EVM by dynamically retargeting EVM opcodes to a subset of Java-like bytecode, and a security-hardened and memory restricted Java-like VM will become the new VM (RVM2). This may bring RSK code execution to a performance close to native code[2].

BTC-RBTC Two-Way Peg

RBTC is used to pay transaction fees in the RSK blockchain network. The RSK blockchain does not have Coinbase rewards for block production and RBTC is not produced in mining. RBTC is two-way pegged to BTC in the Bitcoin network.

In actual implementation, when BTC is exchanged for RBTC, some BTC are locked in Bitcoin network and the same amount of RBTC are unlocked in RSK network. When RBTC needs to be converted back into BTC, the RBTC gets locked in RSK network and the same amount of BTC are unlocked in Bitcoin network. But currently Bitcoin network does not support smart-contracts nor native opcodes to validate external SPV proofs, so part of the two-way peg system in RSK requires trust on a set of a semi-trusted third-parties (STTP), which is called the Federation. The Federation holds the keys that protect the funds locked in the two-way peg system. No single STTP can control the locked BTCs, but only a majority of them have the ability to release BTC funds.

The RSK Federation is now in charge of locking up and unlocking funds. In exchange for their work, Federation members are awarded 1% of the transaction fees generated on RSK, in order to cover the hardware and maintenance costs. There is an automated process to modify the composition of the federation. Each federation member can either accept or reject a composition change. The process, which is infrequent, is commanded by a smart-contract, so it’s open to the public. The protocol has a consensus enforced delay of one week until the change is activated. This allows users to transfer the Bitcoins back to the Bitcoin network in case they do not trust the new Federation composition. As of January 2019, the RSK Federation comprises 15 well-known, and highly-secure notaries.

RSK Roadmap

According to the RSK roadmap, the forthcoming Wasabi version has the following features:

  • Storage improvements: significantly reduce required blockchain storage space while at the same time will set the foundations for future improvements such as warp sync, and garbage collector;
  • Federation Security Improvements (HSM 1.1), to provide new security and usability features that will enable the onboarding of new Fed Members in a more secure way.
  • VM Opcodes Create2 and Shift, provide a higher level of compatibility with Ethereum Smart Contracts. CREATE2, SHR and SHL are virtual machine operations (opcodes) that have been recently added to the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) and to which RSK adding support. RSK has been involved in improving the EIPs to match their needs.
  • Transaction tracing method is an extremely valuable tool that allows developers to inspect the internal execution of a transaction by running it in the exact same manner as it was executed on the network.

More development plans are as the following:

Investors can refer to https://www.rsk.co/development-roadmap/ for the latest roadmap.

RSK Labs and the Community

RSK was created by RSK Labs, which played an important role in RSK architecture construction and early development. After the launch of RSK, RSK Labs continues to contribute to RSK development as a community participant.

The RSK community plays an important role in RSK development, even created the RSK roadmap. Developers can propose improvements to RSK and participate in RSK development via the RSKIP system, which helps the community members to coordinate discussions, rejection, acceptance and deployment over multiple codebases.

Currently there have been a number of proposals in the RSKIP repository system, including the RVM improvement proposal and the drivechain BIP proposal, which enables miners to participate in the securing of the Bitcoins in the peg, and decreases the trust required on the STTPs even more.

3.2 RIF OS

RIF OS Architecture

There is still a long way to go before achieving mass adoption of the RSK smart contract platform. In order to use the blockchain technology to achieve a million-level user base of the RSK ecosystem, RIF Labs decided to create a Root Infrastructure Framework Open Standard, i.e. RIF OS, which consists of a suite of infrastructure protocols and API documents that enable third-party developers to introduce new components into the RIF OS ecosystem.

The RIF OS protocols include: Data Storage, Secure Certified Communications, Data Feeds (i.e. Oracles), Name Resolution and Payment Processing. The framework is shown as follows:

The RIF OS protocols have the following common features: 1protocols are prepared to interact, stake or consume RIF tokens; 2anyone can become a service provider of a RIF protocol by advertising the service, and 3all RIF protocols should be designed so that, if a smart contract layer is required for providing the associated services, the services can be smoothly implemented on top of the RSK Smart Protocol[3].  

With the current RIF OS, third-party service providers can provide storage, communication and payment services, which are rewarded by RIF tokens. In the above RIF OS architecture diagram, D1 refers to the RIF Name Service, which has been deployed on the RSK blockchain. It is one of the name services provided by service providers.

RIF OS is designed to promote a fair market for distributed infrastructure services. It facilitates the development and deployment of distributed applications for users without an in-depth understanding of the underlying technology and increases the adoption of blockchain technology by end users. At the same time, third-party service providers can benefit from the growing user base of RIF OS.

RIF OS Core Protocols

The RIF OS core protocols are set based on the initial target of simplifying applications that tackle financial inclusion problems. In the future, new infrastructure protocols may be added, either by RIF Labs or by any other member in the RIF OS community, in order to enhance this open standard framework and offer greater functionality to RIFOS users[4]. In this report we only make a brief introduction of the RIF OS core protocols. More details are available in the RIF Architecture Specification and other relevant material.

RIF Directory: An alias system (Naming Services) protocol enabling name actions and second markets. The RIF team believe that cryptocurrencies will grow exponentially in the next decade. However, to genuinely enable mass adoption, not only by the tech-savvy community, anyone needs to be able to manage digital wallets and assets. So, one of the principal barriers to adoption is the inherent complexity of the blockchain technology. Ease of use is key for reaching the unbanked and non-technical users.  The RIF Directory goal is to find different types of resources by simple resource names and to improve the RSK platform user experience. Moreover, the system enables users to easily buy, sell and auction names, using the RIF token, and enables service providers to advertise their services. RIF Directory has been released.

RIF Storage: Decentralized redundant data storage access protocol. The RIF Data Storage Layer (RDSL) is a protocol acting as a connective layer for third-party storage providers. This protocol enables the seamless transfer of data and negotiation of prices between storage providers and clients over the RSK blockchain. The end goal of the RIF Data Storage Layer is a competitive environment where storage networks can thrive to provide scalable storage solutions with low fees and low latency, while allowing the users to store their sensitive ID information encrypted in distributed servers around the globe. According to our first-hand information from IOV Labs, RIF Storage is the next component of RIF OS to be released and IOV Labs is working with Swarm to develop a distributed storage and data distribution solution on Bitcoin blockchain, which will use the RSK smart contract network and RIF OS to build data storage network and will become the first solution using the RIF storage protocol.

RIF Payments: A protocol to access any off-chain payment network, especially payment-channel based networks. This protocol enables scalable, cheap and high-speed off-chain payments. The RIF Payments API can help build bridges between different networks. By using the RIF API, services like Point-of-Sale gateways (PoS) can be built, and these PoS services can work across all existing and future RIF-integrated payment networks. RIF Payments also proposes a conceptual framework that is intuitive and relies on legacy concepts such as savings accounts, checking accounts and term deposits. The end goal of the RIF Payments protocol is to generate a competitive environment where

payment networks can flourish to provide low fees and low latency, and that can scale to match the volume and exceed the performance of legacy credit card networks. RIF Payments will provide a UI to integrate different off-chain payment networks. RIF Payments is composed of three main protocols: RIF Payments Full is a protocol which creates an abstraction layer to access different payment networks allowing cross-token and cross-network payments; RIF Payments Light is a protocol to allow light clients to access RIF Payments Full without jeopardizing security and decentralization; RIF Payments Exchange will be used to discover intra-token exchange rates, optimizing the routing of payments to a great extent, selecting the nodes to route payments based on their scoring, exchange rate, and fees among other criteria[5]. IOV Labs releases the RIF Lumino Network when we are writing this report. RIF Lumino Network is an important component of RIF Payments.

RIF Secure Communications: Peer Discovery protocol for authenticated and encrypted communications. RIF Secure Communications Infrastructure (RSCI) is a protocol to enable parties that need to communicate to register their communication methods, discover other parties and contact them through their preferred communication method by using their public keys as a discovering mechanism. By using the protocol, a user may publish his or her pseudonym on the RIF Directory, along with a communication public key. Whenever the alias is used to establish a connection, the counterparty can look up the Communication’s public key, and use it to create a secure connection, enabling pseudonymous communication among participants. RSCI aims to fulfill the need for establishing secure communication links between RIFOS parties or services. These communication links should at least assure confidentiality, integrity, and authenticity. On top of the properties mentioned above, it is possible to build additional features, such as group communications, non-repudiation, and forward secrecy.

RIF Data Gateways: Oracle protocol to access external data feeds. Blockchain protocols with on-chain smart-contracts must communicate with external systems through oracles. The RIF Data Gateways Service provides an implementation-agnostic protocol for external data consumption through Data Service Providers. Some examples of external data are price feeds and the state of foreign blockchains.

RIF Explorer: Explores the services registered for every component of the RIFOS. The RIFOS Platform provides a set of abstractions and APIs to support third-party implementations in the form of RIFOS Service Providers. This decoupling enables the platform to switch to new, potentially more enhanced implementations as the technology of each service evolves, and new solutions emerge. RIF Explorer is a service of the RIFOS Platform that provides the required functionality to register and discover third-party implementations of the RIFOS Services (aka Service Providers) in the RIFOS Platform, allowing developers and clients to choose which one they want to use for their particular use cases.

RIF OS Roadmap

In the first eight months since the launch of the RIF OS framework, there have been multiple launches and releases of RIF services.

  • November 2018: RNS 1.0 launch, RNS simplified the blockchain Domain Name Systems (DNS), by turning traditional blockchain domains that appear as a series of randomized letters and numbers into human-readable form, such as a name or an easily remembered word, greatly reducing complexities and errors while opening up blockchain domain accessibility.
  • May 2019: RIF Lumino Network launch, a Layer 3 solution to the Bitcoin blockchain that enables state channels for every token built on RSK, increasing transaction throughput and reducing costs by orders of magnitude.
  • June 2019: RNS 2.0 multi-blockchain resolver launch. RIF Name Service became the only service in the world that allows to manage domains and aliases for tokens built on top of any platform enhancing interoperability and making it easier to users to move assets flawlessly across different networks. These releases allow to integrate RNS in multiple wallets and use it to resolve RSK, BTC and any other blockchain address.

According to the roadmap, in the next 12 months the IOV Labs team will be focused on delivering additional technologies over the RIF OS framework.

For detailed roadmap visit https://www.rifos.org/blog/rif-os-vision-roadmap/.

RIF OS Long-Term Development Plan

After developing the smart contract platform RSK, which is secured by Bitcoin hashing power via merged mining with Bitcoin, IOV Labs realized they needed more services (data storage, name services, faster payment, etc.) in order to create the Internet of value and a new-generation financial system. That’s why they created RIF OS based on RSK. In the long run RIF OS will go beyond the RSK blockchain to become the infrastructure on different blockchains. It will become an Internet of value that incorporates different blockchains.

In order to establish such a network and become part of it, IOV Labs may adopt the following approaches:

Fostering the creation of “Blossom networks” around the world in collaboration with local incubators, accelerators and universities, which are aimed at:

- Supporting the creation of regional research and development hubs.

- Setting up grants, bounties and prizes for the development of specific use cases that RIF Labs might want to promote.

- Identifying and supporting developers and start-ups working on promising new technologies which are aligned with RIF Labs’ goals.

Expanding RIF Labs’ local presence in key regional markets and select financial innovation hubs to promote and support the RIFOS ecosystem.

Educating developers around the world (and also companies and the general public) about Blockchain technologies, the RSK Smart Protocol and the RIFOS, through a series of on/off-line educational programmes run by either RIF Labs or training partners.

Fostering collaboration with financial institutions, governments and non-profit organizations to help develop solutions for the financially excluded around the globe.

Developing and maintaining multilingual versions of all protocols, APIs and other technologies, making it easier for users from around the world to develop and deploy apps on the RIFOS and help it become a truly global network.

Investing in research and development initiatives, with an initial focus on the interoperability and scalability of decentralized networks.

3.3 Technology Analysis

Relationship between RSK and Bitcoin

As a side chain of Bitcoin, the RSK network is closely related to the Bitcoin network.

If RSK progresses well, RBTC will bring additional use cases for Bitcoin, thereby increasing Bitcoin’s usage rate and value. Meanwhile, RSK will also increase the income of Bitcoin miners participating in the merged mining. As a result, members of the Bitcoin community, whether miners or users, will probably be more involved in the RSK network to make a contribution.

However, RSK is still in its infancy, with a low usage rate at present and it remains to be seen whether the above scenario would be realized. Although RIF OS is dedicated to improving the usage rate of RSK, its development is faced with challenges, which will be analyzed in the following sections.

Merged Mining Hashrate

RSK produces new blocks via merged mining with Bitcoin. It leverages Bitcoin hashrate and shares Bitcoin’s time-proven security without consuming extra hashrate.

Unlike other merged mining projects such as Namecoin and Dogecoin with coinbase rewards, RSK rewards its miners with RBTC transaction fees only. Judging from RSK’s current transaction volume, TokenGazer believes that RSK’s incentive for Bitcoin miners is not enough for the present.

According to the RSK White Paper updated in January 2019, there were more than 40% of Bitcoin hashing power engaged in RSK merge-mining by then. But according to TokenGazer, as of May 2019, hashing power is fluctuating around 30%. We believe that if there is no corresponding measures, it will be difficult for RSK to increase the hashing power in the case of weak incentives for miners. Worse still, the distribution situation of Bitcoin hashing power is not disclosed at present, and there is probably a centralization problem if the hashing power comes from the same mining pool. Moreover, the RSK blockchain is vulnerable to attacks by Bitcoin miners who are not participating in the merged mining, as long as the merged mining hashing power is less than 65% of Bitcoin hashing power.

According to the RSK team, they are about to deploy a system called Armadillo to secure the RSK blockchain and raise the cost of Bitcoin miners’ attacks. And there will be a new incentive plan to further incentivize Bitcoin miners to join the RSK/Bitcoin merge-mining and increase the merge-mining hashing power.

RSK Upgrade

Comparison between RSK, Bitcoin and Ethereum is frequently mentioned in the RSK white paper, and according to the white paper, RSK has certain advantages in performance over the other two blockchains. But it has to be admitted that as an early smart contract platform, RSK has lagged behind many of its counterparts, including Ethereum, which has upgrade schemes to significantly improve its performance.

In its development process, RSK attaches great importance to the community. Even the roadmap was created by its community. Developers in the community use RSKIP to propose, reject, adopt and deploy RSK improvements. According to TokenGazer’s research, almost all the 135 proposals listed in RSKIP are developed by IOV Labs, so we believe that the communitization of RSK development is lack of substantial progress. However, we believe that this situation is beneficial in the early stage of the project, because the improvement and development of the project will be more efficient.

As most Bitcoin miners do not pay much attention to RSK mining and are not inclined to reach a consensus in RSK upgrades, so the upgrade of RSK might be inefficient, even resulting in hard forks and loss of hashrate. As the network grows it will be more and more difficult to do hard forks. According to what the RSK team disclosed in the AMA with TokenGazer, they are working on mechanisms to increase visibility on the willingness / readiness of different actors of the ecosystem to upgrade to the new software. Investors should to pay attention to this problem and its solution.

RIF OS is soundly designed and its progress deserves attention

According to our assessment, RIF OS has a soundly designed and complete technical architecture, enabling the RSK ecosystem to reach a million-level user base and making the RSK ecosystem more diverse, thereby leading to a platform for competition and trading among users and service providers. However, the development of RIF OS is faced with challenges as it has numerous components and is designed to bridge the gap that exists today between Blockchain technologies and its adoption in various technical and business fields. But IOV Labs claimed that they would release MVPs of all RIF services to showcase how stacks work as a whole.

Third-party services in the RIF OS requires a long period of time to obtain a large user base, because in the early stage there are not many applications in the platform attractive to users, and there is no incentive for third-party service providers to participate in the RIF OS. As a result, the development of RIF OS depends primarily on RIF Labs’ promotion strategy, rather than users’ demand in the ecosystem. Other decentralized platforms are facing the same problem, but the first-mover advantage and good promotion strategies will help them build a strong network effect.

Considering the competitive environment RIF OS is facing, a long development period is very unfavorable for its market development. The TokenGazer research team will keep track of the development of RIF OS for further analysis.

MultiCrypto will improve RIF Name Service

So far, RIF Name Service only supports addresses built on the RSK Network. But IOV Labs is launching the MultiCrypto function that allows RIF Name Service users to manage tokens built on top of any platform, enhancing interoperability between tokens built on different platforms.

According to RIF OS’s data on Github, smart contracts of MultiCrypto have been deployed to the RSK blockchain. TokenGazer believes that the MultiCrypto function will lead to more flexible adoption of cryptocurrency.

Lumino Network is released to promote RSK&RIF mass adoption

RSK released the Lumino network recently, which is an off-chain state channel network that enables fast, reliable, and cost-effective off-chain payments with all tokens in the RSK system. The Lumino network is the first project in the RIF payment protocol and the second core component of RIF following the RIF Name Service (RNS).

Based on IOV Labs’ vision of achieving financial inclusiveness, the RIF payment protocol is designed to be as supportive of different service providers as other components of the RIF OS. The RIF payment protocol allows users to interact with multiple inter-blockchain off-chain payment networks such as Lightning and Raiden. Lumino can be integrated with RIF Name Service to enable the use of alias instead of complicated hexadecimal addresses when creating payment channels or conducting payments. This will lower the threshold of cryptocurrency for non-technical users and promote the mass adoption of Lumino network.

Currently, IOV Labs has released a tutorial for users to join the Lumino network as a Lumino node, and anyone qualified can become a Lumino node through specific configuration. The current status of the Lumino network is as the following:

Now there are 16 Lumino nodes and 12 Lumino channels in the Lumino network. Some nodes have not opened their channels yet.

TokenGazer believes that the implementation of RIF Name Service and Lumino network indicates that RIF OS has a better performance in technical architecture design and implementation than most blockchain projects, while judging from the current statistics, the primary challenge for the Lumino network is to promote the adoption of the network, which is also a major problem for RSK. Whether IOV Labs can build a large user base for RSK through appropriate measures in the future deserves constant attention.

4 Token Assessment

4.1 RBTC

RBTC is the native token used to pay transaction fees on RSK Blockchain, which is similar to ETH in the Ethereum network. The total supply of RBTC in the RSK network is 21 million, and is locked in the address 0x0000000000000000000000000000000001000006.

As is described in Chapter 2, RBTC is two-way pegged to BTC in the Bitcoin network. In practice, when a certain amount of BTC are exchanged for RBTC, these BTC are locked in Bitcoin network and the same amount of RBTC are unlocked in RSK network. When a certain amount of RBTC need to be converted back into BTC, these RBTC get locked in RSK network and the same amount of BTC are unlocked in Bitcoin network. In this process, a set of prestigious and highly secure third parties (STTP), that we collectively call the Federation would take charge of locking and unlocking of the BTC funds.

There are currently about 20999600 RBTCs locked in 0x0000000000000000000000000000000001000006, which means about 400 RBTCs are circulating in the RSK network. The circulating amount reflects a low usage rate of RSK, while as to Ethereum, on the contrary, the daily average transaction fee during the period from early this year to the present is 430 ETH, which is more than 3% of RBTC’s market value.

Currently there are only a few exchanges supporting RBTC trading, with a very limited number of trading pairs. According to statistics, RBTC/BTC trading pairs on Bitfinex and Huobi Global contribute the majority of RBTC exchange volume. The 24h volume is merely 20 RBTC, with an upward trend recently:

4.2 RIF

RIF Token is issued on the RSK blockchain and used to pay for all RIF OS services built on the RSK smart protocol (as shown above). The total supply of RIF Token is 1 billion and the release smart contract address is 0x2acc95758f8b5f583470ba265eb685a8f45fc9d5.

The RIF team announced the initial token allocation plan as follows[6]:

  • Approximately 35%-40% will be allocated to the private sale contributors. The initial price of RIF Tokens will be set in BTC. Further details relating to the private sale will be disclosed in the relevant contribution agreements and associated documentation.
  • Approximately 40% will be kept by RIF Labs, unlocked at a rate 1/60th every month for 5 years after the Token Sale and used primarily as a way to promote and increase the adoption of the RIFOS.
  • 20% will be distributed to RSK Labs’ shareholders, founders and management team as consideration for the acquisition of all RSK Labs’ assets and IP, and as a way to align the team long term with the RIF project. These tokens will be unlocked at a rate of 1/48th every month for 4 years after the Token Sale ends, with an initial cliff of 6 months.
  • There will not be a public sale of tokens, but RIF Labs will initially earmark 21 million RIF Tokens for early adopters of the RIFOS through a set of bounty and early adoption incentive programs.

According to TokenGazer’s research, transfers among TGE-associated addresses are as follows, which is closely related to the RIF Token initial allocation:

Approximately 320 million RIF Tokens go to early contributors via initial allocation and then enter the market. Remaining tokens were locked in the RIF smart contract and will unlock in accordance with the following schedule:

4.3 Token Analysis

Both RBTC and RIF need further development. TokenGazer believes that investors should pay attention to the following aspects:

  • RBTC in circulation: There is only a limited amount of RBTC in circulation. As a payment token, the amount of RBTC in circulation indicates the usage rate of the RSK blockchain to a certain extent, which is worth attention ;
  • RBTC threshold: RBTC is the gas for RSK blockchain operation. However it is still difficult for general users to convert BTC into RBTC. It is of utmost importance for RSK to lower the threshold and promote access to RBTC, which is worth attention;
  • Safety issues: At present, miner incentive is limited, and there are problems such as difficulty in improving hashrate and safety issues. Investors should pay attention to additional RIF incentive plans and implementation of the Armadillo system;
  • Ecosystem development: The subsequent development of RIF OS requires a good promotion strategy and ecosystem development plan, and RIF Token incentives and the use of raised funds will play a key part;
  • RIF Cross-Chain: RIF plans to build multiple stacks on top of other store of value, such as Ethereum/Tron/EOS > RIF Services > RIF Libraries. And RIF is planned to migrate to other smart contract platforms to adjust the incentive of different ecosystems.

5 Founding Team

Diego Gutiérrez Zaldívar, IOV Labs CEO

Diego was one of the pioneers of web development in Argentina and Latin America back in 1995. In 2013, he developed Bitcoin communities in Argentina and Latin America with Rodolfo Andragnes and Franco Amati. They also created Labitconf.comin in 2013 and established the Bitcoin Center in Buenos Aires in 2014. In addition he was also the founder of Xinergia (leading edge web development company), Cero a Cien (managing and tutoring platform for entrepreneurs), Arraiga (IT training and labour insertion platform) and Restocoins (payment system to ease bitcoins acceptance on restaurants and cafes). In late 2015, Diego founded RSK with Sergio Lerner.

Sergio Demian Lerner, Chief Scientist of IOV Labs

Before discovering Bitcoin Sergio led hi-tech interdisciplinary projects, from security systems with strong cryptography to real-time medical systems, data acquisition, and digital signal processing. Working in cryptocurrency industry, he periodically perform security audits on the changes to the Bitcoin Core source code. He publishes his ideas in his blog Bitslog.com. He co-founded Coinspect, a computer security company focused on cryptocurrencies, and CoinFabrik, a software-factory for cryptocurrency development. In 2013, Sergio created the first Turing-complete coin called Qixcoin and introduced smart contract to Bitcoin. Several months later, he and Diego merged their teams and established RSK. He became the Chief Scientist of RSK Labs.

I'm currently focused on cryptocurrencies and Bitcoin. I'm excited of having co-founded and being part of RSK Labs, which is soon to launch the RSK smart-contracts platform.

I periodically perform security audits on the changes to the Bitcoin Core source code. I publish my ideas in my blog Bitslog.com. I co-founded Coinspect, a computer security company focused on cryptocurrencies, and CoinFabrik, a software-factory for cryptocurrency development.

Before discovering Bitcoin I led hi-tech interdisciplinary projects, from security systems with strong cryptography to real-time medical systems, data acquisition, and digital signal processing, for Pentatek.com

Specialties: Cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin, Information security, ASICs, problem solving, algorithms. 

6 Community Assessment

Github

Social Networking Site

The number of RSK and RIF OS followers on Github are as shown above, most of whom are followers of RSK Labs.

7 Conclusion

RSK is a smart contract platform developed by RSK Labs. It is secured by Bitcoin hashing power via merged mining with Bitcoin. Then the RSK Labs team established RIF Labs company and developed RIF OS to provide services (data storage, name services, faster payment processing, etc.) they need in order to realize their vision of creating an Internet of value and a new-generation financial system.

RIF OS is currently a set of protocols, rules and interfaces based on RSK. It is an off-chain development stack aimed at removing the barriers that hinder developers from adopting blockchain technology and promoting a fair market for distributed infrastructure services. In the future, RIF OS will go beyond the RSK blockchain to become the infrastructure on different blockchains. IOV Labs hopes to use RIF OS to solve the financial inclusiveness problem and improve the lives of millions financially excluded individuals around the world.

According to our research on the current status of RSK and RIF, TokenGazer thinks RSK has improvement potential in terms of incentives, security, and network upgrade of merged mining. According to IOV Labs, they have improvement plans to tackle these issues, which deserve our attention. RIF OS is currently built on RSK with a soundly designed architecture and its decoupling design enables the platform to switch to new, potentially more enhanced implementations, therefore RIF OS would not be limited by RSK’s development situation. RIF OS features a well-designed architecture with data storage, payment and gateway infrastructure. Judging from RIF OS protocols, implemented or to be implemented, IOV Labs has outstanding architectural design and implementation capabilities. Under current market circumstances, it is a more challenging matter for RSK and RIF OS to obtain a large user base and form a strong network effect. TokenGazer thinks RIF will become a more valuable investment target if RSK and RIF OS can make a significant progress in user base expansion. We will keep abreast of RIF OS’s follow-up progress and promotion strategies, and evaluate RIF OS in comparison with its competitors.

References

[1]RSK White Paper Updated

[2]RSK White Paper Updated

[3]RIF Architecture Specification

[4]RIF Architecture Specification

[5]RIF Lumino Network Specification

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