What is Cardano – ADA?


What is Cardano – ADA:  Cardano is a decentralised public blockchain and cryptocurrency project that is open source. Cardano is a smart contract platform that offers scalability and security through layered architecture. The cryptocurrency is known as ADA was officially launched in Japan on 29 September 2017.  The supply limit has been set at 45 Billion ADA.



As stated on the Cardano website, they are in the process of developing a smart contract platform which aims to deliver more advanced features than any protocol previously developed. “It is the first blockchain platform to evolve out of a scientific philosophy and a research-first driven approach.”


Who are the Developers?


Cardano was created by blockchain development firm Input Output Hong Kong (IOHK) and led by Charles Hoskinson who was the co-founder of BitShares, Ethereum and Ethereum Classic.  The development team consists of global engineers and researchers. Jeremy Wood and Charles Hoskinson, who founded IOHK (Input Output Hong Kong), have been contracted to build, design, and maintain Cardano until 2020.


The Cardano ICO


Held in 4 stages between September 2015 – January 2017 with Know Your Customer (KYC) requirements.

It was marketed as an “investment to retire on” to primarily Japanese investors and 95% of the buyers were of Japanese origin. The ICO total sale was approximately 26,000,000,000 of the 45,000,000,000 total supply of ADA tokens.  A total of approximately $63 million USD was raised at an average price of $0.00242 per ADA.

What is an ICO?



What makes Cardano different?


According to Charles Hoskinson, ADA is a third generation cryptocurrency, with Bitcoin being the first, and Ethereum the second generation.  Let’s explain…


  • First Generation – Bitcoin – A decentralized monetary system which can transfer money from one person to another (Peer-to-Peer) anywhere in the world.  Unfortunately this first generation blockchain only allows for monetary transactions without conditions – a good reason to develop another solution to meet this need.


  • Second Generation – Ethereum – The Ethereum network was developed for smart contracts which can help you exchange money, property, shares, or anything of value in a transparent way without a middleman.  This was a powerful development however, scalability is an issue as acceptance and popularity have grown considerably.


  • Third Generation – Cardano – Taking the positive and negative aspects of the first two generations, Charles Hoskinson added new aspects and developed Cardano to address scalability, interoperability, and sustainability.



The Cardano Principles


Cardano began in 2015 as an effort to change the way cryptocurrency is designed and developed.  Generally, cryptocurrencies start with a white paper however, Cardano had a different approach – a collection of principles.  Taken from the Cardano website:-


  • Separation of accounting and computation into different layers
  • Implementation of core components in highly modular functional code
  • Small groups of academics and developers competing with peer reviewed research
  • Heavy use of interdisciplinary teams including early use of InfoSec experts
  • Fast iteration between white papers, implementation and new research required to correct issues discovered during review
  • Building in the ability to upgrade post-deployed systems without destroying the network
  • Development of a decentralized funding mechanism for future work
  • A long-term view on improving the design of cryptocurrencies so they can work on mobile devices with a reasonable and secure user experience
  • Bringing stakeholders closer to the operations and maintenance of their cryptocurrency
  • Acknowledging the need to account for multiple assets in the same ledger
  • Abstracting transactions to include optional metadata in order to better conform to the needs of legacy systems
  • Learning from the nearly 1,000 altcoins by embracing features that make sense
  • Adopt a standards-driven process inspired by the Internet Engineering Task Force using a dedicated foundation to lock down the final protocol design
  • Explore the social elements of commerce
  • Find a healthy middle ground for regulators to interact with commerce without compromising some core principles inherited from Bitcoin



Is ADA mined?


ADA Coins has adopted a proof-of-stake algorithm called Ouroboros vs a proof-of-work system such as Bitcoin and EOT.

The Proof of Stake (POS) concept makes the mining process virtual as it replaces miners with block validators.  These validators are required to stake their coins – the more coins owned, the more power they have to validate and thus receive higher rewards.  

The first cryptocurrency to adopt the PoS method was Peercoin followed by Nxt, Blackcoin, and ShadowCoin


Which wallet holds ADA?


Daedalus is currently the only (software) cryptocurrency wallet that holds Ada and allows transfers to other wallet addresses.

A full overview of Cardano with Charles Hoskinson



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