These fast and lightweight platforms would be able to sync with the Nimiq blockchain in seconds. In order to establish consensus, the data they would be downloading would be less than that of a song on MP3. The Nimiq team is also angling to support off-chain transactions and atomic swaps for cross-chain compatibility.
This project was kicked off in July of 2016 as research began on what the team now calls third-generation blockchain technology. By January of the next year, the proof-of-concept, browser-based blockchain was operational with only 10,000 lines of ES6 code. In March of 2017, the founders organized a larger team and developed the first feature complete version along with a private beta testnet. By June, the technology was ready to be let out into the wild. The team launched a public version of the beta testnet and the world’s first browser-based blockchain came online. The end of June saw the beginnings of a token sale to bring in funds to support the network and 10.5 million NET tokens were distributed.
These NET tokens are not the actual NIM tokens, but they will be redeemable at a rate of ten NET to one NIM. This is to take place once the Nimiq testnet is completed and the mainnet is launched. This is tentatively set for early in 2018.
On September 23, the Nimiq team brought their German operations base online. The team had previously operated out of Costa Rica, but with some of the newer members of the team from Germany it made sense to have two operations bases. Much of the work on the betanet had been done during “hackathons”, but the team wanted a more long-term and stable base of operations. The two bases also enabled the team to work “round the clock” with part of them in Costa Rica and part in Germany.
As the team worked its way through 2017, various developments were released. The Luna testnet was launched on November 24th. Luna brought some interesting additions to the Nimiq blockchain. One of these was the beginning of the three-tiered client system. This system is not fully complete. The light and nano clients are still under development, but the full nodes are ready for first adopters to try their hand at mining on the testnet.
Being web browser-based applications, users can simply start mining Nimiq’s test tokens with no installation whatsoever. Although these coins have no current value and may be completely nullified when the mainnet comes out, they still serve an important purpose in testing and developing Nimiq’s unique blockchain.
Looking to the future, the Nimiq development team hopes to get the mainnet up in the beginning of 2018. After that, the goals outlined on their road map include implementation of ASIC resistance and completing the mini-blockchain scheme that will power the light and nano clients. Even farther into the future, their goals include off chain transactions, P2P exchanges, and much more.
Nimiq is a far-seeing project, ambitious both in style and scope, the design team is striving to add something truly unique to the world of cryptocurrency. This development team certainly bears watching in the time ahead.