On May 28, the IOTA project announced a revolutionary update called Coordicide to fundamentally change the way IOTA works. The update removes the so-called coordinator from the transaction verification process, making the IOTA network fully centralized. But, who of you knows what it really means?
IOTA is the future of the Internet of Things
The IOTA project was created in 2015 and from the very beginning, the grandiose plan was to become a universal platform for micro-transactions between all electronics connected to the Internet. IOTA allows you to pay even one penny for any activity that takes place on the network, fully automatically.
IOTA enables smart devices to work efficiently, such as a refrigerator, which orders the food itself, or a vending machine that itself pays the supplier for refilling the goods.
At the same time, IOTA plans to use the maximum of computing power and storage that ordinary electronic devices are not currently using. Whether it’s computers, mobile phones or smart scales, they always have an unused capacity that can be “rented” by the IOTA network.
Over the past year, IOTA has advanced with this idea and today we will summarize their progress.
Tangle – the backbone of the entire IOTA system
Although IOTA is referred to as a cryptocurrency project, unlike other systems, it does not use blockchain, but a special mathematical algorithm, DAG. This algorithm shares basic characteristics with blockchain, but it differs fundamentally from it in several ways.
Thanks to DAG, Tangle does not have a built-in maximum number of verified transactions. Acyclic processing allows you to process many more transactions at a much shorter time.
Any new transaction sent must first confirm any two previous transactions before it is confirmed itself. The selection is random and the more transactions are requested on the network, the faster is the transaction time.
The coordinator problem: lack of centralization
In order to prevent attacks on system integrity, programmers introduced the so-called “coordinator” function into the code. This is a special node in Tangle that deletes transactions that are called “milestones”. These are checkpoints that check the accuracy of all previous transactions.
Thus, any transaction on the IOTA network can be removed from the system simply by not being included in the “milestone” transaction. In this way, the resources of any user can theoretically be frozen.
The coordinator also poses a security threat, because if hackers would take control of this special node, they would be able to control the entire network.
The IOTA team has claimed from the beginning that the coordinator’s role is only temporary and that they are actively looking for a way to get rid of it. The ultimate goal of Tangle is to program nodes to make decisions autonomously and correctly with no need for control mechanisms. Coordicide is the solution and allows the full decentralization of Tangle.
Coordicide implements a voting mechanism between nodes
It consists of five modules that introduce node ratings based on their progress, a simple way of connecting IoT devices to IOTA, and Shimmer, a major change that eliminates the coordinator’s problem.
Shimmer is a voting mechanism that allows nodes to decide on the validity of a transaction by voting progress of each other. In a few rounds, a node asks a small number of nearby nodes to verify the transaction (whether it is in order) and decides on their responses whether it persists in its verdict or changes the opinion for the majority.
In this way, all nodes will eventually reach the same result and the whole system is in agreement. Of course, the decision-making process itself is more complicated and you will find a detailed description of the process directly on the Coordicide website.
However, the result is clear: The coordinator node is no longer needed because common nodes will agree with themselves through Coordicide.
IOTA allows you to verify the origins of fashion in stores
One part of the Internet of Things is the effort to make the production of goods as transparent as possible and to offer the buyer a way to verify the origin and quality of the purchased product. In April 2019, IOTA teamed up with other technology partners to create a solution for the fashion brand 1017 ALYX 9SM where customers could find out about the product in-store.
So a system was created where at the beginning of the production chain, the T-shirt is provided with a unique QR code, through which all operations taking place in the production and distribution process are monitored.
The data is stored in the EVRYTHNG company’s cloud and is written to the IOTA Tangle system to ensure its authenticity.
The customer in the store only needs a phone with a mobile application and a camera. After reading the QR code, the entire history of the shirt he holds in his hand opens.
Fusion with Jaguar Land Rover promises worldwide use of IOTA in cars
Jaguar Land Rover has chosen IOTA as its cryptocurrency for its ‘Smart Wallet’ technology. Drivers will be able to receive MIOTA Cryptocurrency for providing local authorities and navigation system providers with field data, especially on traffic levels and obstacles on the road.
Cars will also allow you to purchase a variety of premium features for which you will need to pay. And how else than with MIOTA coins?
IOTA has entered into several partnerships and is working on integrating Tangle into several major projects
In April 2019, one of the most important exhibitions in the manufacturing industry took place. Four exhibitors presented new techniques and equipment that use IOTA Tangle, one of which was Fujitsu. It examines how to use Tangle to track the manufacturing process of individual electronic components, especially in connection with complaint procedures and proving that they are genuine Fujitsu parts.
BOSCH sees the decentralized IoT data marketplace (operated by IOTA) as so important that it incorporates its new inventions.
IOTA also participates in the + CityxChange development project under the Horizon2020 budget program, which is to modernize seven European cities for 20 (EUR 10 million) and to bring the Internet of Things into operation. IOTA Tangle is supposed to be their backbone network.
The biometric device IAMPASS uses Tangle to verify the identity of a person using the quick scan layout of the veins in the hand. This type of facility is to be the basis for complex smart cities in the future, where the identification of a citizen is a prerequisite for the proper functioning of all services.
– Luke –