Saturday, October 31, 2020

Validator Vote Transitions NEAR Protocol to Proof-of-Stake Mainnet

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Decentralized application blockchain NEAR Protocol is live following a 6-month release road-map begun in May, according to the developer team.

The Andreessen Horowitz-backed blockchain project successfully transitioned to Phase 2 of Mainnet on October 13 following an unexpected vote from the network’s validators, NEAR Protocol co-founder Illia Polosukhin told CoinDesk in a phone interview.

“It is now possible for anyone to send or receive tokens, to create accounts, to participate in validation, to launch applications or to otherwise use the network,” the team said in a release shared with CoinDesk.

Polosukhin said the project’s “liquid democracy” function that allows token holders to delegate governance to validator pools unexpectedly led NEAR Foundation members to launch the network earlier than expected .

The network was previously operating under a limited Proof-of-Authority (PoA) model. The Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) compatible blockchain is now operating under its own “Threshold” Proof-of-Stake (PoS) consensus algorithm.

NEAR Foundation CEO Erik Trautman told CoinDesk the project took longer to vet over the summer months than originally intended as “edge case” performance issues were being addressed. He said some 1,000 delegations occured ahead of the vote that launched NEAR on Tuesday.