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Blockchain Influence: Duan Xinxing (Founder of Bytom) – Blockchain Is Not Only a Technology Trend, It Can Reshape the Economy

As a promising and one of the most potential blockchain projects in China, Bytom leads a brilliant technical team with goal-oriented application scenarios in mind. Duan Xinxing, founder of Bytom, gives us a full elaboration of Bytom and the future of blockchain in his eye.

What is Bytom blockchain?

Actually the name of Bytom has clearly made it, a combination of byte and atom. “By-” stands for the heterogeneous byte-assets (indigenous digital currency and digital assets); “-tom” refers to atomic assets (warrants, securities, dividends, bonds, intelligence information, forecasting information and other information that exist in the physical world). To put it simple, Bytom is a blockchain interactive protocol of multiple byteassets, via which different assets can be registered, exchanged and engaged in other more complicated and contract-based interoperations. The protocol, bridging the atomic world and the byteworld, online and offline.

Duan Xinxing

Duan (left) in the headquarter of Microsoft in Seattle

As of Jan. 2018, what’s the development progress of Bytom?

Bytom is gonna put online in March or April 2018. Our test network has been completed with monthly iterations. In the latest version, graphical interface operation is supported, the client, based on the visual front end frame of React+Redux, has realized network monitoring, public and private key management, account management including account creation and marking asset management including creation and publication, as well as UTXO data and balance inquiry. And now we are mainly engaging in the integration test of functional software and hardware, improving the safety and stability of mining algorithm for better fit for AI chip.

Will Bytom cooperate with other enterprises after launched, will the cooperation involve implementation of application scenarios?

On one hand, we’ll have cooperation in the underlying infrastructure construction for the public chain, including software, hardware and networking. In terms of hardware, we are developing and testing chip and hardware partnering with the domestic well-known AI and ASIC chip design institutes to ensure that Bytom’s AI acceleration service can be implemented by hardware. Meanwhile, we also cooperate with Space Chain, whose “space chain” can broadcast block information via AI chips and nodes carried in satellites. If the network on the ground collapses, it would download the block through the ground access to rebuild the data network.

On the other hand, we’ll further partnership in the application and ecology building. Take COOIX Technology for example, as a banking and financial services provider, it can build APP and applications for user identification and user credit system based on our protocols and APIs. Be more specific, based on Bytom’s protocol, they’ll verify a user’s real identity information, assess his credit limit, and then register his assets to the chain to ensure the reliability of his assets. Maverick Chain, our partner, is developing mobile-based SDK based on Bytom.

In addition, there are other partners, digitizing the various atomic assets into byteassets of the future. For example, assets such as a celebrity’s time, or equity assets as copyright, patents and non-standard assets as culture assets and forest rights of a non-listed company, can be registered on the chain, and then be traded and contract-based operated.

What is “asset on-chain”? Asset that is put on the chain make any difference?

It actually involves how we look at blockchain and its impact on the economy system.

Blockchain, first is a protection of personal asset and wealth, and greatly improves the operation efficiency and convenience in asset transactions.

For another, blockchain is introducing in a new concept, that is, community. In the past, we also had community based on the Internet, and we also talked about the community economy, but it is inefficient and its cohesion is not very high in an Internet community. While blockchain enhances the economic efficiency of the community. It is a community based on tokens. It packages lots of stuff into your protocol layer, that means, it is all written in the code that what you do, what behavior you generate, how you interact, what you contribute, and what incentive you can get. Just the case of bitcoin.

Then what will happen after that? Will economic model change? “Media is the information.” as McLuhan said. The media will affect the characteristics of information itself. After the asset is put on the chain and the universal application of the smart contract, will the economic model of our world and the economic system change? What will happen to promote social interaction and collaboration?

In my understanding, blockchain is not a simple set of techniques combining cryptography, peer-to-peer networking and asymmetric encryption. More importantly, it writes some economic incentives into the code. This is very interesting.

What’s the place of Chinese blockchain enterprises in this new economy? Some people think that there are few good projects from Chinese blockchain enterprises compared with overseas projects, how do you view this issue? What is the biggest bottleneck for it?

China’s blockchain business is indeed still in its infancy. Lack of talent is one of the problems, it means not only technical talents are in need, but also those all-round talents or startup entrepreneurs who have a deep understanding of both technology and business. This leads to a waste of resources or even bubbles as some companies which may not be creative enough would follow others to do what they are engaging in. In the case of cryptocurrency frenzy, for example, a team may go a bitcoin fork for solving a certain problem, while now it seems everyone has nothing to do but fork a altcoin.

Another reason is the gap of financial system development in different countries. The development of foreign financial system is relatively more completed, while its Internet finance system is kinda behind China. At this moment, there is an urgent need such as blockchain to enhance its efficiency and promote the revival of the entire system both in China and foreign countries. Apps like Alipay and WeChat are not available in Japan, South Korea and hard to imagine in the United States. While a large number of App companies have emerged due to the developing of Internet finance in China, thus, in this stage, the blockchain must find a stronger and more innovative and cutting-edge approach to see a better development in China.

I think the blockchain startups must also see clearly the advantage and excellence of blockchain compared with previous technologies. To create not imitate. In this context, this must be a gradual transition where both traditional financial talents, traditional Internet talents and traditional technical talents are urgently needed. A good product needs talents both in business and technology.

What’s the advantage and chance of Chinese blockchain enterprises? Can we make a blockchain product and community that has global influence like Ethereum?  

Not impossible, to make such a world leading application, firstly you must have advanced technology and excellent developers. Another is a big market with a big user base. Considering these two factors, maybe only US and China can make it in the whole world as long as the government is in favor of it. These two countries have talent developers and chip makers with vast number of users and investors, forming a relatively integrated industrial structure.

We DO hope Bytom could be a leading power in the global blockchain industry in the future, like Alibaba’s position in the Internet finance.

What’s Bytom’s plan in 2018?

  1. Launch the public chain and official products committed in our whitepaper.
  2. Partner with traditional financial institutions, crypto and blockchain-related enterprises, as well as AI enterprises and network operators to co-develop applications and a better ecology.
  3. Be more international-faced developing, take an active part in the building of open source community, for example, we just took the second prize in the Global Blockchain Hackathon sponsored by COSMOS. And Bytom will further expand the US, Japan and South Korea markets. It has been verified by the US SEC Howey test as a untility token instead of securities or security token. We’ll further promote legal operations and business, and steadily grow and be a heavyweight voice in the world.


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