The Blocknet describes itself as the “internet of blockchains,” enabling open-ended communication and delivery of services between users of different cryptocurrencies, and vastly increasing the user base (and profit potential) of any given coin.
In addition to announcing the availability of its first stage services, Blocknet invites any interested party to join its think tank by contacting the company. The Blocknet core team includes founder Dan Metcalf, Arlyn Culwick, Paul Busch and Nick Cote.
Metcalf previously founded the digital currency XCurrency. When considering how best to build XCurrency’s user base and to improve the state of cryptocurrency in general, Metcalf came up with an idea to accomplish both at the same time, according to the original presentation of the Blocknet’s vision. He envisioned enabling one coin’s features to function as services accessible to users of every other cryptocurrency.
Currently, Blocknet users can send encrypted messages to each other, trade in a completely p2p way, and spend Blocknet tokens, says Arlyn Culwick, a spokesperson for the Blocknet core team. “In addition, any developer may utilize the Blocknet’s open source protocols to develop inter-blockchain services. After all, if applications can exchange funds and communicate securely, they can be made to do anything,” Culwick told CCN.
Still in its early stages, the Blocknet will be an application platform that will allow regular smartphone developers without knowledge of cryptography to harness the power of blockchains, Culwick said.
Want to use SwiftBackup to store files, but from the HZ wallet and without having to make users download and learn new software and bloat their hard drives? Such an action would need inter-blockchain technology, Culwick said.
“Furthermore, we believe that without blockchain interoperability, blockchains just cannot realize their potential, due to inexorable bloat, lack of modularity, and due to not being mobile-friendly. The Blocknet simply removes these limitations, enabling a ‘microservices’ approach to ‘DApp’ (decentralized application) design, in turn bringing DApps into the real world.”
A microservice is a service delivered by an app that only performs one function. Netflix, for example, provides microservices over a distributed architecture. Netflix uses servers, but it’s not p2p or decentralized. Other examples of microservices include payment detail capture, user account updating, and content streaming.
The Blocknet brings blockchain-based technology to numerous functions and increases the user base of a coin’s features.
The Blocknet lends itself to monetization, Culwick said. Microservices can require a fee that can be paid in p2p fashion from app to app.
Funds to pay for services can be purchased in advance, earned through screening adverts, or earned when the app renders services to other nodes.
When apps render a service, they also pay a microfee to the Blocknet for providing the infrastructure that makes cross-chain services possible. This fee is then distributed to holders of Blocknet tokens.
“Customers pay a microfee to the node that delivers a service to them, and then the service provider node pays a (smaller) microfee to the Blocknet for enabling inter-chain service delivery,” Culwick explained.
Blocknet supports both business and personal applications.
“It’s open source code with incredible utility and can be put to open-ended purposes. I expect it to be used for both personal and business purposes in the same way that the Internet is used for both.”
While it offers the use of different blockchains, the Blocknet is not a wallet. “The Blocknet enables you to use the technologies of a different blockchain from the one your wallet is on,” Culwick told CCN. “It also enables third party apps to utilize any given selection of blockchains’ services. Nodes on other blockchains will be able to deliver services to your node, without your node needing to download the other blockchain. Services are paid for in microfees over the decentralized exchange.”
The Blocknet website lists several services that all use different blockchains.