It's been some time since there's been any semblance of an official post, or really anything from me other than some remarks made on IRC regarding the state of development in Neos and frankly if it's dead or alive. This post is meant to welcome and educate those new to Neos, update those who have been faithfully following and supporting Neos (thank you all very much) and hopefully revive some faith in those that had assumed it was a dead project and moved onto others. The summation of what's taking place with Neos is directly followed by a more in-depth explanation.
- Coin and codebase swap - completely new base, features and chain.
- PoW swapped out in favor of PoS and masternodes
- Total money supply and wallet holdings reduced by ~79%
- Faster block times. 1 minute block times, down from 5 minutes
- Privacy and instant transactions facilitated by masternodes
- Static PoS reward of 1 Neos per block, 50% to the staker, 50% to masternodes
- Daily generated Neos reduced by 90%, from approximately 14,400 Neos, to approximately 1,440 Neos
- Development fund generated to ensure continued support and innovation
- 35 Masternodes will be operated by the foundation, profits go to the development fund
Neos launched August 24th, 2014 - nearly 2 years ago. The overall purpose behind the creation of it, was to offer a unique system with features that were actually useful and provide a project that people could trust in. Our focus was purely on the technical, setting aside any economical consideration. We love(d) what we were doing and had a great response from the community. Over the years I've been asked some very good questions and I think they along with their answers deserve some attention here.
What went wrong?
Let's start with the fact that I personally bought nearly 300k Neos off of the public market when it was at it's all-time high. Shortly following that, the price took a nosedive. We were giving out Neos, using it as payment for other services, selling it for BTC to pay for Neos-related costs (hosting, design, odds and ends like translations, our own living costs, etc). We were doing our best to maintain everything that we had been doing along with being here 7 days a week through the day and night. I didn't seek employment anywhere or contract out my services until it became a necessity. Remote desktop support, email, phone, skype and forum support were provided and basically Neos was our be-all-end-all. However, after the funds (BTC and Neos) had depleted, it began to affect our personal lives in an extremely detrimental way. We weren't active traders, we had no backroom deals with anyone - it was just us and code. To put it in perspective, imagine being paid salary for a year and the subsequent years earning nothing. That would impact anyone's life.
In attempt to balance out the effect essentially coding for free had, I began contracting out my services to other projects - some which failed, others which never left the ground - but left me without many options and a pile of debt. The third party software we were using to encode wallet files came with a hefty annual pricetag - which the community at one point had provided some funds to restore. Unfortunately, my contacts just simply stopped responding with regard to our account and left me with little to no options in terms of rectification.
What did we learn?
Within this arena, while technology and capabilities of a project may very well be respected and appreciated - the balance between technology and economics is a must for any project to thrive. A healthy balance of time spent between marketing, networking, development and support is a must. Without that - failure is inevitable. Proper networking is essential, partnerships with like-minded projects and communities as well as third party services - are essential. While many thought the PHP-based system was unique and interesting, we received more confused responses than positive. The time spent to ensure that it was compatible across all three major systems (Linux, osX, Windows) could have been better spent on something more portable like the Qt. Starting out multi-algo PoW - also was a mistake and for more reasons than those on the surface. It made integration into some popular applications a pain due to the internals. Switching from multi to single-algo PoW was the right choice - but the inflation rate wasn't even considered. PoW is a decent system, but in all reality a poor choice in comparison to PoS (Proof of Stake). We've seen the Neos chain at a near halt for hours some days due to the lack of hash on the network. This is a problem. So as you can tell, there were and are many factors to consider and we've spent the downtime reflecting on them and devising what we hope will be a positive impact and complete change of pace for Neos and the community.
What are we going to do with all of this hindsight and perspective?
We're going to fundamentally improve the overall network, its features and the economy - not only in the now, but with foresight to ensure the future is a brighter one. Roadmaps - I've never been fond of them, but have learned they're a must. In the coming week or so, a roadmap covering the next several cycles of development and strategy will be posted. The major changes that will be taking place are:
A complete swap from the current Neos base, to a new one. The new network has been running for over a week in testing to ensure network health and smooth operation. It will be PoS only, along with masternode technology. I've taken a liking to the Transfercoin work that infernoman has put in and I see a lot of potential for what I've always wanted to focus on - blockchain innovation. The PHP interface had its uses, but limitations as well. There was so much time spent on the PHP interface that there was little time left for us to show the crypto world what else we can offer in terms of innovation - purely using the blockchain itself. The existing features of Dash that are in Transfercoin will be availble and some new ones will be disclosed on the roadmap which should make things interesting.
The current money supply and all holdings will be cut down by roughly 79% and the number of Neos produced daily significantly cut down. There's no need for millions of Neos out in the wild, as long as this is a global change. Your holdings would not be worth less, as it is global and all within perspective. For example if the existing supply was 1000 NEOS, it would now be 210 Neos. If you hold 100 Neos, you now hold 21 Neos. So in contrast to the economy, your position would not change. Also having nodes staking with 500k+ neos would drive the network a bit insane.
Details on the newly pre-mined Neos:
At the time of writing this there are 11,023,000 Neos in circulation approximately.
21% of 11,023,000 is 2,314,830. The new premine will cover the following:
- The Neos foundation will run 35 masternodes on the network for services and security which will cost 175,000 Neos. Masternode addresses are public, minimum balances must be maintained and will remain in-tact. Profits from the masternodes will be used towards the development fund, operations overhead, and for community-voted expenses.
- The Neos foundation will have 125,000 Neos to cover developer's salaries for long-term continued development & innovation, support (via skype, telephone, teamviewer, remote desktop, etc.)
- Approximately 100,000 Neos to act as a recovery fund for several users that have reported hacks months earlier (trusted, long-term supporters with verified hacks). We support our community to the best of our ability, in any form possible.
- 50,000 Neos to act as a fund pool for community-voted expenses. Some examples might be sites that charge for listings, partnerships within other communities and projects where an even barter of coin is present, hosted masternodes in exchange for services such as design
, additional development, etc.
- 7 days worth of generation on the existing old chain, in the event all exchanges haven't halted trading/deposits/withdrawals and the swap isn't complete before then.
A general note about the above and the current chain:
It's been running for some time, and much longer than we had anticipated. The reason mainly for this was that we didn't have the bitcoin fee for the swap at bittrex together until just the other day in its entirety. Our stakers have been running as well as a masternode, so our dev fund will be cut into a bit by my calculations to cover the money supply overall - but that's yet to be seen by how much exactly. That's fine with us, we're just glad we have it available for the network and community as a whole to avoid prolonging this any further.
To make this swap a success, a few things have to happen and I'll outline the steps here:
- We'll be working with exchanges on a set date to halt trading, withdrawals and deposits of Neos.
- We have a snapshot of the chain to ensure everyone's balances are as current as possible
- All existing wallets will just need to dump their private keys for their addresses and import them into the new wallet (If anyone needs help with this we're available to help)
- We will be sending out the funds to each of these addresses on the new chain
What are hosted masternodes?
Hosted - as in we run the nodes for you, provide an interface to show how much profit each has made and the ability to withdraw the profit from them. The reason is, with this new economic model, if we just gave away 109,500 Neos - it would likely cause a severe impact on the market, perhaps even a crash. The masternodes exist to ensure security and facilitate network services (instant transactions, private transactions (darksend) and other future concensus-based features). The reward for existing and providing these services are there as profit to the rightful owners. Offering hosted masternodes provides additional security to the network, so the benefit is two-fold.
What happens next?
Once the new wallet is released, we're going to be looking to hire a designer to give the site a new look as well as reddit. We anticipate the complete swap to be finished by the end of the weekend. The new chain containing the new balances (old balance * .21) and the market should adjust accordingly. We'll be here to answer any questions anyone might have about the process. A roadmap will be released within the coming week detailing where we see Neos going in the future and the vision we have for it.
A new developer is joining the Neos team
I'm very happy to announce, Ahmed Bodi, an incredibly talented developer involved with crypto development for many projects with a proven track record over years - is joining the Neos team. With our combined efforts to bring continued innovation, provide quality support and remain a reliable project within this space we're really looking forward to what the future holds. We'll be rolling out changes slowly, but steadily and anticipate the community's approval and appreciation for what will be revealed in the coming months.
If anyone has any questions, they're more than welcome to ask as always.