TOP Network First Ask Me Anything RECAP
We successfully held our first AMA (Ask Me Anything), led by TOP Network CEO Steve Wei, in our official Telegram group at 10 pm — 11pm PST on Nov. 28. We are sincerely grateful to our community members who stayed with us for the great conversation. Through the process of answering the sharp questions from our community, we had a deeper understanding of what our supporters are interested in and concerned about.
Missed out the live AMA? No worries. Here comes our RECAP!
Q1: What is TOP?
TOP Network is a high-performance blockchain with a powerful array of service-level infrastructures, including the world’s first decentralized cloud communication services. TOP aims to build a business-friendly blockchain platform that handles real-word business of any type, size or volume.
Q2: How is TOP different from other public chains?
TOP Network is radically different from other public chains.
First of all, Today’s public blockchains are too slow to process large volumes of transactions. The fastest blockchain, which reaches several thousand TPS, still cannot support real-world business. Besides, some blockchain platforms like EOS run on permissioned networks. Using a few permissioned nodes to execute consensus mechanism on behalf of the entire network, they are no fundamentally different from centralized networks.
We have an ambitious vision.
TOP aims to build a business-friendly, high-performance blockchain platform that can handle real-world business of any type, size or volume. TOP will reach several hundred thousand TPS on a permissionless network. TOP is not just a distributed ledger. With its service-oriented architecture, TOP offers a powerful array of service-level infrastructures, including the world’s first decentralized cloud communication services, on the blockchain.
Follow-up: What do you mean by service-level infrastructures? And what kind of services?
On TOP Network, we make it super easy for developers to build communication features and functions, which almost all apps are required to have.
We offer full-stack cloud communication services, including messaging, voice/video, VoIP, VPN, streaming/CDN, IoT data sharing and more, freeing developers from the headache of building communication stack and deploying network by themselves.
This will significantly shorten the development cycle and drive down the costs by over 60%.
Q3: How do the three-layer ledgers work on TOP Network? What do different layers do and how do they work together?
TOP consists of one main chain, multiple service chains and the off-chain processor. The main chain handles transaction settlement only, while service chains, pluggable and customizable, handle various types of business logic. Each business logic is processed on an independent, corresponding service chain. Transaction execution is pre-processed on the off-chain processors to reduce the workload on the ledgers.
Q4: What’s the mechanics of DPOS-PBFT?
We have upgraded DPoS consensus by redefining “stake.” In the traditional DPoS consensus mechanism, consensus nodes are selected based solely on their stake, or the size of their assets, leading to the the-rich-get-richer situation. A node’s stake on TOP, called Comprehensive Stake, is determined by multiple factors such as asset stake, accumulated reputation and computing power. Among nodes with the highest comprehensive stake, a VRF algorithm randomly selects nodes to form shards that validate transactions and produce blocks with a PBFT algorithm. This mechanism ensures the fairness of node selection and protects the security and integrity of TOP.
Q5: Three apps will be moved to TOP Chain once it’s launched. Why do you want to move these apps to the chain?
TOP Network originated from the common underlying network layer of Dingtone, CoverMe and SkyVPN. When TOP Network is launched, the original communication layer of these three apps will be replaced with TOP Network. The migration will be seamless and transparent.
Dingtone, CoverMe and SkyVPN will reap big benefits from the migration. The service costs on these apps will be reduced substantially. A decentralized network, TOP Network can offer lower prices compared with the centralized, in-house networks.
TOP Network will strengthen the security on SkyVPN and CoverMe. SkyVPN will become a decentralized VPN on TOP Network, which consists of several hundred thousand nodes. TOP Network can fully protect user privacy and ensure that no firewall can block SkyVPN.
CoverMe is the world’s first end-to-end encrypted messaging app. Once CoverMe is moved to TOP Network, all user data will be stored on a decentralized network, which means nobody can steal information from any CoverMe user.”
Q6: Will DApps on TOP share their interoperability with other Apps? Will this be a possibility?
The cloud communication services on TOP Network adopt RCS protocol, an international communication standard. Communications apps built on RCS protocol are interoperable with each other.
Google is heavily promoting RCS standard. I visited them a few months ago. The RCS team has over 100 members.
Today, a WeChat user cannot send messages to a WhatsApp user. Once TOP is built, users of different apps are able to interact with each other without shifting between apps on their phones.
Q7: What are the functions of TOP Tokens after TOP Network is launched? What can we do with them?
TOP token is a utility token. Dapp developers use TOP tokens to pay for cloud communication services and for deploying smart contracts on TOP Network. TOP adopts DPoS consensus mechanism, so nodes need to make deposits in TOP tokens. End users pay service-related fees, for example, the subscription fee in SkyVPN, in TOP tokens.
Follow-up: How can we earn TOP tokens to do these things?
TOP tokens will be available for mining after the launch of TOP Network.
Q8: What are the latest updates of the project?
We are really busy and have made huge progress. TOP Network keeps making breakthroughs in various aspects including technical development, fundraising, community operations and team building.
1. We have validated on our Testnet our key technologies we are using to scale up the blockchain. Since its launch at the end of October, our Testnet has handled over 80 billion test transactions, the highest TPS hitting 8,664. The confirmation time for general transaction is less than 1s.
2. TOP has recently received a multimillion-dollar strategic investment from United Space Corp.
3. We just rolled out a series of incentive bounty programs, bringing in a huge number of active users to our TOP community.
4. Partnering with DoraHacks, the world’s most active hacker organization, TOP Network is hosting a Hacker Arena at World Digital Assets Summit (WDAS) on Dec. 11 in San Francisco, the home to the best developers in the world. We will provide interesting coding challenges and juicy rewards for winners.
Q9: TOP just released its Testnet in October. How is its performance?
So far, our Testnet has handled over 80 billion test transactions, the highest TPS hitting 8,664. The confirmation time for general transaction is less than 1s. We believe the Testnet has validated the key technologies we are using to scale up the blockchain.
Our community has been incredibly supportive of our Testnet. Over 40,000 addresses were registered on our Testnet. Also, we received 200+ applications from 30+ countries during our Testnet node recruitment. The community is crucial to TOP’s long-term success, and we sincerely appreciate your support!
Q10: What are the next milestones of TOP Network? What events will be happening with the community next?
We will soon launch the world’s first decentralized VPN on top of our Testnet. We also expect to list TOP Tokens on exchanges early next year.
We expect to launch our Mainnet in Q2 next year. This will mark a significant milestone in our technological development process. Our world-class developers are working hard to realize the high-performance blockchain platform promised in our white paper.
We are partnering with DoraHacks to host a Hacker Arena at World Digital Assets Summit in San Francisco on December 11. We will show you how our business-friendly, service-level infrastructures can make it super easy for developers to build communication features and functions on TOP Network.
In addition to the 10 official questions above, we also answered lots of questions raised by our community members.
Q11: On the video introduction TOP network mentioned that TOP offers secure, low-cost services. Can you explain that in the detail?
Almost all the today’s apps are required to implement communication functions such as messaging and calling, but building these functions is time-consuming and costly: without established infrastructure, a company has to hire a bunch of experienced developers to build communication stack and backend software, deploy servers and purchase bandwidth.
As we mentioned before, with our cloud communication services, an app developer no longer has to build communication stack and backend software, deploy servers and purchase bandwidth by themselves. Without these headaches, a developer can reduce over 60% of the development cost.
Q12: The community’s view that most Dapps are operating efficiently on ETH are Dapps betting, dice. The number of other Dapps users is very small, making the mainstream becomes very difficult. Have TOP Network thought about this issue?
That’s an excellent question! Actually, in contrast to other blockchains, we never worry about attracting mainstream users, because we’ve already secured a huge, solid user base. Before we launched this blockchain project, our team have developed Dingtone, CoverMe and SkyVPN, three communication apps that have attracted 50 MILLION users in total. These apps will be ported to TOP Network and generate massive volumes of transactions in the TOP ecosystem. In a nutshell, we have both the eggs (users) and chicken (Dapps) from day one.
We are also confident about attracting mainstream businesses to our platform. The reason that most Dapps on ETH and EOS fall into the game and gambling category is that those platforms don’t have sufficient infrastructures to support real-world business of other types. As we mentioned before, we offer various business-friendly services on the blockchain, including the world’s first decentralized cloud communication services.
Q14: Will TOP be able to handle such a big volume of transactions from day one?
Yes, we can! We have already validated the key technologies we are using to create a high-performance blockchain, including two-layer sharding, two-layer lattice DAG, three-layer network and PBFT-DPoS*. TOP Network is horizontally scaled-out to reach over 300,000 TPS while remaining completely permissionless.
Q15: Which coding languages can be used on TOP?
We’ll transfer the 50 million users on our existing apps to our main chain early next year.
Q16: How can we earn TOP tokens to do these things?
TOP tokens will be available for mining after TOP Network is launched.
Q17: Will there be a crowdsale?
Yes, there will be a crowdsale. However, KYC is strictly required.
Q18: How can TOP change the way Dapps work on blockchains to attract more users?
We provide Dapps with a powerful array of business-friendly, service-oriented infrastructures, including the world’s first decentralized cloud communication services on the blockchain. Those infrastructures can help developers to build real-word business apps on the blockchain.
Q19: Is B2B a major driver of anticipated growth of TOP next year and beyond?
The cloud communication services are designed for app operators. In this sense, TOP is B2B.
There are individual developers as well, but they only account for a small portion of our users.
Q20: TOP mentions VOIP systems, does that mean it can be integrated to voice gateways and would that mean changes to systems like call manager? Can it run off an MPLS (Multiprotocol Label SwitchinG) link or only WAN (Wide Area Network) connection?
TOP VoIP Service will connect to global carriers. It is essentially a super voice gateway that connects a wide range of global carriers and provides voice termination service. TOP VoIP Service provides an SDK for apps to make VoIP calls. However, it does not offer a SIP-based protocol in the SDK because SIP protocol does not support proof-of-call time. That being said, a standard voice gateway cannot directly connect to TOP VoIP Service. A voice gateway will need to run a server with TOP VoIP Service software and add the server to TOP Network as a node. That server is a bridge between TOP Network and the voice gateway.
Have more questions about TOP? Our next AMA is on the way. Stay tuned!
Don’t forget to leave your questions in the comment section below the announcement of our next AMA on our social channels (Medium/Twitter/Reddit/Bitcointalk/Telegram/Steemit). You will get 20 tokens for each question selected!