The project of the Cosmos Network is a heterogeneous network of independent blockchains that can interact with each other through the main blockchain Cosmos Hub using the IBC Protocol; for example using Cosmos Hub will be a direct exchange zcash for the broadcast or Monero, bypassing the centralized exchanges, or spending smart contracts on Ethereum, which is a transaction of bitcoin.
Such a system can be compared with the sharding Ethereum, where the role of the private shards I play the whole blackany called zones, just start sharding will take place no earlier than 2019. Recently, the launch of the production version of the Central blockchain system, Cosmos Hub has been moved from December 2017 to first quarter 2018, and its architecture has undergone significant changes.
Cosmos Hub based on consensus PoS Tendermint, a native token is called an Atom. Atom consist of deposits validators, PoS performs in the role of PoW miners in the block chain. Atom have low liquidity, they cannot be used to pay transaction fees, rather, they can be represented as a virtual «hardware» such as ASIC PoW; they ensure the participation of nodes validators consensus. Validators and delegatory (Delegator – user, who does not want to deploy validatory node may delegate any Atom validator reward) rewarded for their work, but in the case of misconduct, their Deposit can be forfeited).
Now to the «atoms» added «photons». Photon also is an internal token Cosmos Hub and its purpose is to conduct transactions and payment transaction commissions; he has much higher liquidity than the Atom, and the rate of turnover in the network is much higher. In fact, in physics a photon is an elementary particle or a discrete packet of energy that carries light at a high speed.
According to the developers, they abandoned the architecture with a single token, similar to Ethereum Protocol PoS Casper, for the following reason:
A single token has two functions: deposits and validator of the transaction. This increases the value of the token increases its liquidity, but also reduces the motivation to become a validator.
Imagine a hypothetical scenario in which a whale takes hold of a 5% token Ethereum. If the validators concentrated deposits of less than 15% of the broadcasting system, then such a «kit» is able to organize an attack 33% (the threshold BFT consensus).
It should be noted that this issue had already been raised when discussing Casper CBC, and Vlad Zamfir pointed out that in such a situation, it will solve a simple fork.
However, in the system of the Cosmos, which uses a consensus Tendermint, ppl were impossible, so the problem is critical, and the introduction of a new token is justified.
Economics and Cosmos
In the model Atom Cosmos tokens are used mainly for deposits, and the Photon becomes the first of many future token intended for transaction. The Atom holders will receive sufficient remuneration for validators activity, and the above-described attack scenario becomes unlikely. If someone tries to purchase the amount of Atom required for the 33% rate, its liquidity, already low, has decreased, progressively increasing the price of such an attack.
Transactions originating from different networks require different amounts of commissions denominated in various resources. Therefore, instead of demanding that all validators have agreed on a price of a particular token on every block, the Creator of each block determines the price of tokens and converts the fee for transactions in its block.
The aim of Cosmos is to build a Network ecosystem of multiple tokens in the future, transaction fees will be pay in different tokens, but at the start Cosmos Hub will handle only the tokens from the white list.
When the system starts, the white list will consist of Atom and Photon.
Validators Cosmos Hub are rewarded with tokens Photon. In addition, a Photon is analogous to ether in the area Ethermint – the blockchain, which will be launched simultaneously with the Cosmos Hub. Ethermint is a Virtual Machine Ethereum, as a consensus is used not the current PoW algorithm, and not the future of Casper and Tendermint – PoS consensus, developed by Jae Kwon (Kwon Je), a leading developer of Cosmos. Having a substantially higher bandwidth (up to 400 transactions per second) than the current PoW Ethereum and the future of Casper prior to the introduction of sharding, Tendermint, however, pays for this significant reduction of network security.
The issue will be permanent – 500 Photon/h; This means that the inflation rate will asymptotically tend to zero. However, the issue will not begin from scratch – this would lead to a very uneven distribution. Instead, the Cosmos team conducts the initial Photon distribution in a way that will surely please the users of Ethereum. In contrast to hardforum, the initial Photon distribution will be called Hard Spoon (spoon), and each holder of the broadcast will receive an equivalent amount of Photon.
Spoon and fork
In Ethereum, a significant share of tokens contained in smart contracts. Therefore, to each holder of the ether was able to get their share of photons, Cosmos will create a full clone of blockchain Ethereum, including contracts and EVM, which is called a Hard Spoon.
The blockchain will be one of the first areas annexed to the Cosmos Hub immediately after its launch. Once this happens, holders of the ether will be able to get their photons and use them in the Hub and other areas of the ecosystems of the Cosmos.
Of course, the primary area Photon will be quite bloated bacchanal – because it will be written all the current state of Ethereum. Therefore it is used only for the distribution of photons, and its further use is not foreseen for this you can use the other «clean» areas Ethermint, in which you can create contracts and Dapp.