Ardor project purpose and description
What is Ardor?
Positioning itself as a scalable blockchain-as-a service (BaaS) platform for entities and individual users makes Ardor a viable resource. There is a lot of interest in blockchain technology in the world, from individuals and corporations alike. However, most of this enthusiasm is killed by the inability to develop custom solutions that meet unique user needs and demands.
A BaaS model makes things easier for users because it addresses most of the challenges that they might have. Ardor is shoring up competition against some of the most popular BaaS platforms like Microsoft by taking on a different approach in terms of the technical elements.
Ardor has a unique parent-child interface which takes all the hard work and technical challenges away from individuals and corporations that need to use the BaaS.
Instead of worrying about security challenges, patches, and timely upgrades, Ardor takes care of all that as the parent chain. Companies, for example, can now build their own services and products in Ardor using child chains. The child chains, however, enjoy the perks of security updates and other benefits that are offered by Ardor’s parent chain.
The concept of side chains has become an issue of great interest in blockchain technology, and this explains why Ardor is getting all the right attention. Other than offering security features, Ardor as a BaaS is also designed to be energy efficient. This is a huge advantage over most of the other players in the market.
The energy required to run a BaaS might not be the same as the energy required for mining cryptocurrency, but by adopting a proof of stake method over proof of work makes Ardor less energy intensive.
Ardor does not hog resources either. Users do not need to invest in very expensive hardware or spend a lot on electricity to run this BaaS platform. This is because consensus in Ardor is done through a distributed system, thereby eliminating mining competition.
What is the problem that Ardor Solves?
Ardor is built on the Nxt platform. Nxt was introduced a second generation cryptocurrency, in an attempt to expand the use of blockchain technology into value transfer.
In the course of the development of Nxt, three main challenges were imminent, which Ardor was designed to solve:
- Single token use
- Cloning concerns
- Blockchain bloat
Single token use – All the features in the platform must use the NXT native token. This includes the block generation process, paying transaction fees, transfer of value, pricing asset exchange orders, the prices of items that are traded in the marketplace, and transferring assets over the blockchain.
The problem with this is that it becomes difficult for developers to design apps that transparently use the blockchain. The system in place should not force users to use NXT for transactions. Other than that, the value of currencies and assets should not be forcefully fixed in NXT.
Cloning concerns – It is very easy to clone a blockchain. The problem that most organizations encounter is maintenance. Organizations create clones to help them obtain custom blockchain networks that meet their unique needs, complete with a transactional token. How does a clone work?
A clone is simply a separate blockchain that runs a modified version of the blockchain software, but there is no link between the original blockchain and the new blockchain.
While this might work, it raises a lot of concerns for small or medium-sized companies. A cloned blockchain does not offer the same level of security as the parent blockchain. It will lag behind in terms of security updates, and feature development, especially if it is implemented by someone who is not well versed in Nxt software.
Blockchain bloat – One of the major challenges that most blockchain platforms have is blockchain bloat. This is a situation where all nodes are tasked with storage and reprocessing of transactions. Nxt is not spared from this either. When new nodes are created, they must reprocess all the data when they download the blockchain. This problem arises because of the fact that some blockchain platforms might not be trustworthy.
The problem with such bloating is that it creates a bottleneck, and the system gets overloaded as the blockchain increases in size. With more users coming on board, the need to push more transactions per second is ever important, and this takes a toll on the blockchain. Bloat in the blockchain is a problem that needs to be addressed fundamentally to allow true scalability and to make the blockchain platform future-proof.
How does Ardor Solve the problem?
In a structural capacity, the Ardor parent chain only maintains transactions that affect the forger balances. Therefore, all the other transactions by the child trains are pruned.
This leaves a cryptographic proof that the transactions were carried out. When using an Ardor child chain, users will only work with the child chain token both for paying the transaction fee, and value transfer.
Should a business require their own blockchain, they would not need to maintain their own server network, forging network or be concerned about the security of their system.
To join the blockchain, a new node has to validate the parent-child transactions. This is a very small representation of the transactions that pass through each child train over the past 24hrs. Other than that, the new nodes load snapshots of the current state of the blockchain from the existing nodes. This includes the aliases, properties, and account balances.
If, as an individual or an entity you need to pull information for bookkeeping purposes, like the transaction history, you will only need to set up an archival node. This node maintains all the transaction information depending on the instructions set.
If currencies or assets have been issued on a child chain, users have to pay transaction fees in the coin used in that child chain. In fact, the API has been streamlined in such a way that users might not be aware they are using a blockchain in the Ardor network.
The design of the Ardor network is aimed at reducing the number of transactions held in the blockchain while maintaining the network security credibility. This is a single token dependency solution that makes blockchain features readily available to users and organizations.
Business entities find Ardor coming in handy for their BaaS solutions because it provides convenient and secure blockchain applications and solutions with the dev team always available for support.
What makes Ardor better than the competitors?
One of the biggest advantages that Ardor has over the competition is that it borrows a lot from the tried and tested Nxt blockchain, taking advantage of the benefits, and improving on the flaws.
The following are some of the reasons why Ardor stands a cut above the rest:
Ardor is written in Java. Java is one of the most commonly used multiplatform programming languages in the world. Using Java means that Ardor already has a rich development environment that makes it easy for users to verify the code.
Other than that, Java is common in most enterprises. This means that anyone who wants to create anything in Ardor can easily clone and adapt the code to suit their unique needs. Besides, they can also use the same integration, deployment and software tools they are already using to run and maintain their products or services in Ardor.
Proof of Stake
Ardor runs the most environment-friendly algorithm, proof of stake. This algorithm is friendly because it does not demand a lot of hardware to run the blockchain efficiently. To run Ardor, a simple laptop would more than suffice. In fact, a lot of projects are currently trying to migrate to proof of stake, including Ethereum.
The parent-child chain is one of the reasons why Ardor is considered one of the best BaaS platforms. The nodes are run in public through different users all over the world.
This eliminates unique failure points. It is decentralized, which sets it apart from other BaaS solutions like IBM and Microsoft who manage and host their infrastructure.
How can Ardor be categorized?
Ardor can be categorized as a BaaS (Blockchain as a service) platform. This platform was born from the Nxt blockchain, that has been around for years, and features improvements and innovative concepts therefrom. Ardor features a unique architecture with one security chain and several transactional chains. This structure allows Ardor address three of the fundamental flaws that were evident in Nxt, and is present in a lot of the blockchain platforms currently running online; reducing bloat on the blockchain, hosting interconnected blockchains that are ready to use, and allowing multiple transaction tokens.
The blockchain market is on a rapid growth trajectory, and with this comes unprecedented demand. As a result, the team behind the Ardor project built the IGNIS token for Ignis. Ignis is a child chain in Ardor. This child chain is decentralized and unrestricted, allowing users all the functionality and features that are evident in the Nxt blockchain.
Inside the Ardor blockchain, developers can create many other child chains for different uses and entities, including consortiums, enterprises, public listed companies, research institutions and financial institutions.
This is what makes Ardor more appealing to SMEs, for example. In this manner, small organizations and large corporations alike have access to child chains designed with ready to use features. Without this, they would have to build their own blockchain from scratch, with all the unique features that they need. This poses several security risks.
The Ardor BaaS, therefore, allows these entities to implement their respective child chains in an efficient and cost-effective manner without security compromise, or the risk of redundancy. These are assurances that are offered in the Ardor parent chain.
What’s Ardor’s vision on Security?
Ardor’s vision into the future of BaaS and blockchain technology, in general, is about simplicity. Ardor does all the hard work and allows the users to create their own products and services on the platform while Ardor takes charge of most of the difficult stuff, like security.
This is why users are able to create their own public or private blockchains, complete with personalized settings, as child chains.
In terms of security, Ardor has a team of developers that work round the clock to provide the best security for the parent chain. The child chains are connected to the parent chain that handles security and processing. The nature of this parent-child relationship is such that the child chains get to enjoy or inherit all the security features of the parent chains. Therefore, by protecting and securing the parent chain, all the child chains are secured.
This makes work easier for users, especially those who do not have much experience in BaaS security. They are able to create their apps, products, and services without worrying about security compromise.
By addressing the issue of security in such a simple manner, Ardor has taken away the burden of security from the users and left the task to experts. In retrospect, this makes it one of the safest, most secure BaaS platforms, which is a confidence boost for entities and individuals who are looking for a platform for their operations.
Ardor has also built on some of the security advantages of Nxt blockchain and improved on its limitations. In the Nxt blockchain, users have to clone Nxt to create a blockchain which is not connected to the original.
However, Ardor identified some of the challenges in cloning, especially the security flaws, and addressed this by conceptualizing the BaaS as a parent chain, and instead of cloning, users can create multiple child chains to suit their needs.
Examples of Ardor use cases/applications
There are several areas where Ardor comes in handy. In terms of monetization, users can make use of the paid premium services on the platform. These include charging to promote child chain services within the respective wallets or using the in-wallet ads. By integrating Ardor into payment providers and exchanges, this allows easy conversion of child chain coins into other cryptocurrencies, which can be based on the fiat currency.
In terms of adoption, the banking and financial sector is one industry that has been eager to embrace blockchain technology over the years. Some of the services that are carried out under the Ardor platform include:
- Digital payments
- Tracking insurance
- Money transfer
- Trade finance
- Cross-border transactions
All these are services where the parties involved can appreciate the distributed nature of the Ardor blockchain. Besides, since Ardor is scalable and written in Java, its application is not only restricted to these institutions but expands to other industries too. Public organizations find Ardor useful for transparency, public notaries, and secure voting.
In the supply chain systems, this BaaS can help in design verification, tracking parts and logistical concerns. In the finance and cryptocurrency sector, Ardor is useful for currency and asset tokenization, payment of dividends, pegging child chains and creating white label tokens.
All this comes down to the fact that Ardor features some of the richest functionalities that users demand in BaaS platforms, making it ideal for issuing securities and assets without much concern. More importantly, Ardor is effectively a flexible, highly adaptable and cost-efficient architecture which does not just meet the needs of users but also addresses the complexity and diversity of the tasks that users demand of the platform.