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ælf is a decentralized self-evolving cloud computing blockchain network that aims to provide a high-performance platform for commercial adoption of blockchain technology. In order to establish a blockchain infrastructure for various commercial requirements, ælf provides an efficiency-focused multi-chain parallel-processing system with cross-chain communication and self-evolving governance. The project focuses on four main attributes: scalable nodes on a cluster of computers, parallel processing for maximum utilization of processing power resource isolation for smart contracts via independent and specialized side chains, and Interoperability and flexibility to choose from different consensus protocols (native delegated proof-of-stake (DPoS), proof-of-work (PoW), or proof-of-stake (PoS)) and private/public chains ELF tokens are used to pay resource fees in the system, such as deployment of smart contracts, operating and upgrading of systems (transaction fees, cross- chain data transfer fees). It also enables the community to vote on major on-chain decisions, such as electing mining nodes, introducing new features to the system and other major decisions, which collectively enable self-evolution capability of the network.
The ælf Kernal aims to provide a minimum viable blockchain system including fundamental functions like a unified account system, block production, smart contract functions(collection and updating), and customizable consensus algorithms and block headers. Additional functionality, including the creation and execution of smart contracts, will be facilitated through a "shell" operating system (OS) that functions as the basic interactive interface to the core system. Users can either use the complete Blockchain operating system or develop a customized OS by redefining the core through new interfaces. Each node is a cluster network (e.g., a cloud network) instead of a single computer. By leveraging cloud networks as nodes, ælf aims to provide network participants with higher computational power as well as the storage capability. A parallel processing algorithm will be developed and integrated to each node to ensure the optimal utilization of all the participating computers in the cloud network. When a node handles a complex set of transactions within a smart contract, it will dissect the transactions into groups of those that do not demonstrate interdependency and process them in parallel, simultaneously. Consequently, the task time is minimized and the overall processing speed maximized. A node’s capacity can be easily scaled by adding new computers to the existing network without having to upgrade the node computer’s hardware. ælf operates as a multi-chain network where each side chain is independent and smart contracts are executed directly from a side chain, not through the main chain. Side chains aim to localize traffic concentration thereby enabling consistent transaction speed for smart contracts on other side chains. Each side chain will have the ability to host an independent set of nodes allowing it to determine its own processing speed. Side chains will be established for a specific business scenario, e.g., token issuance (ICO), an insurance database, in-game transactions, etc., and their consensus protocol, node delegation, chain privacy and various other chain qualities can be tailored to best support the specific business scenario. The main chain acts as the ledger and communications hub, focused on efficient cross chain communication, triggering of smart contracts across side chains, and effective synchronization between chains with different speeds. Over time ælf aims to bestow its network participants an entirely self-evolving authority through its voting protocol. ELF holders will have the ability vote on a diverse sets of critical decisions that will collectively shape the eco-system; this includes the decision for each side chain to host their own delegated node, choose whether the participating side chain will be public or private, determine the size and the speed of the side chain, remove or add side chains to the network, etc. The project utilizes Merkle tree root based chain indexing to communicate and interoperate with other consensus protocols such as PoW and PoS. ælf provides side chain templates to its developers for rapid smart contract development for those who do not have the in-depth understanding and capacity for ground-up smart contract coding. Technical development will be led by Beijing Hoopox Information and Technology Co., Ltd. Founded in June 2016, Hoopox focuses on providing Blockchain-based solutions for various industries. Hoopox received funding of USD 4.3 million (RMB 28 million) from seven VCs, including China Growth Capital, Draper Dragon, WeX Fintech, Taoshi Capital, Danhua Capital, and Albatross Venture, and FBG Capital.
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