October 16, 2018
Name of Token:
Proprietary AION-1 (Originally ERC-20)
Matthew Spoke (Founder/CEO)
Main Use Case:
Cross-Chain Interoperability to solve problems of privacy and scalability
Inflationary (1% per year)
$104,392,645 USD (October 16th, 2018)
$2,642,828 USD (October 16th, 2018)
History of the AION Token
AION has been in development since 2017 with the goal to be an interoperable blockchain. This means to be able to bridge different isolated blockchains to utilize their users to enhance the network effect. The interoperability of AION is not to be limited to only public blockchains; private blockchains are able to be worked into the system.
Nuco, the parent company of AION, was founded in 2016 by three former Deloitte blockchain specialists to develop blockchain for enterprise environments. Beyond AION, Nuco is important within the blockchain space as they were founding members of the Enterprise Ethereum Alliance (connecting blockchain and traditional companies), founding members of the Blockchain Research Institute, and act as advisors for the Ontario Securities Commision (OSC) on its policies for crypto-currencies and ICOs.
Breaking down their token offering, there was a 60/40 split in the allotment of tokens to the public and what is being held by the AION foundation (being held and released over three years). AION had two fundraising periods, one private and one public sale, raising over $23 million dollars. Their public sale (price floor set at $1), which was to be held in two 10 million token phases, was cancelled. Several reasons were given for the cancellation. The main reason was for the team to focus on having the first milestone built and released by early 2018. Other reasons included market volatility as well as needing time to grow the team and define the roles of everyone. It should be noted that on the announcement day AION was trading below $1 however it was over closed at $1.49. The 20 million tokens that were for the sale were placed into the token release schedule (TRS). The public TRS allowed backers to send AION to a smart contract which releases more AION to them over one year. This was done to incentivize long-term commitment. The TRS bonus is 297% with a release of tokens at 6.25% per month including an initial 25% release. The first release occurred on December 14th, 2018.
AION has amassed an impressive list of partnerships. Their first major announcement was when they, along with Wanchain and ICON, founded the Blockchain Interoperability Alliance to promote and advanced standards on interoperability. They are also partnered with Bancor to offer inter-chain liquidity and Metaverse to explore transacting native digital assets on the Metaverse protocol across to other blockchains. More partnerships can be found at this link.
AION has been working a great deal on their products and have quite an extensive road map. On April 25th, the AION main net Kilimanjaro network was launched. Within this phase, AION has released their Virtual Machine (FastVM), an enhanced Ethereum Virtual Machine, as well as their modified proof of work.
AION is continuing to work on the Kilimanjaro phase of their roadmap with the release of their bridge tokens coming in Q3. These tokens are built to migrate the AION ERC-20 to a native AION-1 coin. The bridge tokens will a trusted distributed network for forwarding the transfer requests of the user. These bridge tokens will also be able to be interacted with via smart contracts. AION is also continuing to develop upon their other goals outlined in their roadmap including FastVM, AION Core (multi-chain framework) of foundational modules to run the AION-1 Blockchain, and AION web3 API’s (for implementation of the Aion blockchain kernel application programming interface).
Differentiating Factors of AION
AION does not see others trying to work towards interoperability as competition. They rather see it as an opportunity for collaboration which can be seen from the formation of the Blockchain Interoperability Alliance. There are several differentiating factors between AION and other similar blockchains within the same space:
- Bridging – Unlike many other projects, AION is focusing on making sure that other blockchains do not need to change to be able to bridge. There are a few compliance requirements for blockchains that can be bridged which is outlined in their whitepaper. These includes decentralization in some form, having common blockchain procedures such as atomic broadcasting (all participants receive the same info in the same order), recognizing cross-chain transactions uniquely, implementing a timelock feature for tokens bridged, and to know the consensus protocol of the bridge. Chains will not need to fork to be compatible. There can also be multiple bridges between the different blockchains.
- Consensus method – taking several of the known consensus methods including byzantine fault tolerance, and proof of stake and combining it with a new method: Proof of Intelligence (see future goals). This new method requires performing artificial intelligence (AI) computation. This is to enable the creation of AI-specific or specialized hardware that could be used for machine learning and neural network training in the future. Pooling in able to be done on this, similar to mining pools, where the rewards and proof will be shared.
- Proprietary Virtual Machine – the AION Virtual Machine (AVM) is similar to a Java virtual machine, but is built to execute logic within a distributed setting and understand scenarios that can arise from this environment. The AVM is used to build applications on top of the AION-1 blockchain and has the ability to create powerful inter-chain applications. Security is built into the AVM. An expendable budget must be set so that the program cannot run indefinitely or damage the host machine or disrupt the consensus mechanism through faulty timing behaviours.
AION’s Future Goals
AION and their roadmap have two more major phases outlining the future. One that should also be completed in 2018 called Denali and one for 2019 known as Everest. These roadmap steps will continue to be fleshed out over time.
Denali covers three main topics:
- Implementation of the AION virtual machine – uses characteristics of Java Virtual Machine for blockchain specific purpose. It will also be used for running applications on top of the AION blockchain and will include its own language.
- AION scripting language – used to write chain-logic that will run on the AION network and other connected or participation networks. It will be compiled and executed within the AVM.
- Introduction of Proof-of-Intelligence Consensus Algorithm – the economic incentive requiring participants to perform AI computation. This will eventually allow for neural network training capabilities and the ability to run artificially intelligent applications on top of the blockchain.
Everest covers three main topics:
- Improve bridging – allow for more complex communication between AION-1 and other blockchains such as contract logic and free-floating token supply.
- Complete validator nomination process – a combination of delegated proof of stake and proof of intelligence to achieve fair and decentralized validation with high performance.
- Upgrade AVM to the second version – continually develop to enhance the VM such as the inclusion of more languages.
MLG Blockchain is a preferred partner with AION. This token profile was not paid for or sponsored in any way.