EOS

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EOS.io
Eos logo.jpg
Founded 2017
Headquarters Hong Kong
Key People Dan Larimer, Chief Technology Officer; Brock Pierce, Investor, former Chief Strategy Officer
Employees 200
Twitter @EOS_io
LinkedIn Profile
Facebook Page
Website EOS.io
Blog ES.io blog

EOS is a blockchain-based software platform developed by Block.one. Its native cryptocurrency token uses the same name. It seeks to provide a platform for smart contract and dApp development capable of scaling to accommodate millions of user-to-user transactions per second, eliminate user fees like those of bitcoin and Ethereum, and improve the process of maintaining applications based on its blockchain.[1]

Background

EOS, or EOSIO, was developed by Block.one, an open source software publisher specializing in blockchain technology. The EOSIO engineering team is led by Dan Larimer.[2] Larimer is known as the founder of Bitshares and the inventor of the delegated proof of stake consensus mechanism, an algorithm that allows blockchain-based applications to continue functioning despite widespread failure of block producers, or nodes, in its network by making it easy for the network's community to "vote in" replacement producers quickly.[3]

Among its early investors was Brock Pierce, a former child star turned cryptocurrency entrepreneur.[4]

Before launch, EOS tokens were airdropped to interested users as ethereum ERC-20 tokens. These were "frozen" prior to launch, allowing users to convert them into EOS tokens.[5][6]

EOSIO 1.0 launched June 2, 2018.[7] It became the world's fifth most valuable cryptocurrency, with a market cap exceeding $13 billion.[8] Despite launching on time, EOS did not go live, or become usable to general consumers, until June 15th.[9][10]

Overview

EOS was designed to make the process of scaling decentralized applications on its blockchain as easy and efficient as possible.[11][12]

The EOS blockchain has been criticized for being too "centralized."[13] However, Dan Larimer insists that the delegated proof of stake model is solid and will allow the platform to surpass other dApp platforms like ethereum in transaction speed, user-friendliness, cost-effectiveness, ease of maintenance, and scalability.[14]

In 2019, EOS trading was added to Coinbase. Though it was initially available only to Coinbase Pro users, support for EOS trading began for retail users on May 30, 2019.[15]

On September 30, 2019, without admitting or denying the allegations, Block.one settled charges by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission that it had failed to register its EOS properly with the agency by paying a fine of $24 million. Hoping to avoid U.S. jurisdiction the company's ICO had raised money globally. Some U.S. investors however did manage to invest in the ICO giving rise to the charges.[16]

John Oliver

EOS was a prominent target in the HBO talk show host John Oliver's special episode on cryptocurrency. While discussing questionable or unscrupulous practices by various ICOs, Oliver brought up EOS's $500,000,000 ICO. Oliver continued to poke fun at EOS throughout the episode, particularly its support by Brock Pierce; he highlighted Pierce's past legal battles surrounding allegations of sexual misconduct. He also referred to Pierce as a "sleepy, creepy cowboy" (referencing his taste in headgear), and a "douche." Pierce himself tweeted about it, saying Oliver had him laughing "while making important points." He went on to recommend that his followers watch the entire episode.[17]

Following this episode of Oliver's show, Last Week Tonight, Block.one announced that Pierce would be stepping away from the EOS project as part of a "mutual agreement" to end his role with the company.[18]

Talent Exodus

In September 2018, several members of the original EOS development team from Block.one - David Moss, Thomas Cox, Brian Abramson, and Corey J. Lederer - announced they had left the company. They said they had begun working on a new startup called "StrongBlock." David Moss, the CEO of the new startup, said over Twitter that "EOS will be a 787 and StrongBlock will be a custom 787 factory." This tweet was accompanied by a picture of two Boeing 787 airplanes inside a hangar. One of the employees said that the purpose of StrongBlock (as well as the implied reason the group originally left Block.one) is to address "a need in the blockchain marketplace that Block.one was not going to address," though they did not disclose any detailed information about how StrongBlock planned to address this "need."[19]

In September 2019, Coindesk published a story describing the declining state of the EOS ecosystem. According to the story, block producers of the EOS protocol had become frustrated with low or no rewards for contributing to the consensus of the blockchain network. According to Brock Pierce at the Tulip Conference in June 2019, voting power among EOS users had become consolidated among a few nodes based in China, resulting in what Pierce called a "Chinese Oligarchy" that kept the majority of EOS users from having any significant voting power - which also kept them from earning any rewards other than low-tier ones for creating consensus. Developers were also frustrated by the lack of users of the apps produced for EOS, resulting in development companies making little or no money for their work.[20]

CTO Dan Larimer quit Block.one as of December 31, 2020. Larimer said in a January 10 blog post on the Voice, a social medium partially owned by Block.one, he was leaning toward building more privacy-focused software products."[21]

Google Cloud as Block Producer

In October 2020, EOS announced that Google Cloud had begun making preparations to list itself as a block producer. Google Cloud Developer Advocate Allen Day told cryptocurrency news outlet Coindesk via a spokesperson that Google was not planning on getting into cryptocurrency mining (a process similar to EOS's block creation), that this was part of Google's commitment "to ensuring that the information on public blockchains are securely stored, reliably available and can be accessed in meaningful ways.” In an email, Day said that Google doesn't intend to claim rewards for creating blocks, saying, "there isn't a revenue model for Google Cloud in connection with participating in open-source protocols. Of course, various protocols provide rewards to incentivize node operators to secure network services, but we don't intend to claim those rewards at this time." Day said that Google's stake in becoming involved with the protocol had more to do with providing data services to help support EOS's infrastructure, and to learn more about distributed ledgers so that it can better support similar customers in the future.[22]

Key People

References

  1. EOS.IO Technical White Paper v2. github.
  2. block.one. Linkedin.
  3. DPOS Consensus Algorithm - The Missing White Paper. Steemit.
  4. Cryptocurrency eos leaps past litecoin into fifth place by market cap. CNBC.
  5. Around a Dozen Airdrops are Coming to EOS Holders. NewsBTC.
  6. EOS.Hedging will offer the largest airdrop to global EOS users – HNT is coming. NBC2.
  7. EOSIO 1.0 Release. block.one.
  8. Asian Cryptocurrency Trading Update: EOS Adds $2 Billion to Market Cap. NewsBTC.
  9. Days After Launch, the EOS Blockchain Still Isn't Live. Coindesk.
  10. EOS Mainnet Goes Live as Block Producer Voting Passes 15% Threshold. CCN.
  11. EOS.IO Technical White Paper v2. github.
  12. block.one. Linkedin.
  13. EOS, Cardano and Tezos: Sleeping Giants Starting to Stir. Bitcoin.com News.
  14. EOS.IO Technical White Paper v2. github.
  15. Coinbase Adds Support for EOS Cryptocurrency on Retail Site and Apps. Coindesk.
  16. Cryptocurrency Startup to Pay $24 Million in SEC Settlement. Wall Street Journal.
  17. Why the Cofounder of This Hot Crytocurrency Startup Is Out After John Oliver Criticized Him on 'Last Week Tonight'. Fortune.
  18. Block.one Responds to John Oliver after HBO Host Ribs EOS in Crypto Segment. CCN.
  19. Early Execs Leave Block.one, The Peter Thiel-Backed Crypto Startup Behind EOS. Coindesk.
  20. Everyone’s Worst Fears About EOS Are Proving True. Coindesk.
  21. Resignation as CTO of block.one. Voice.
  22. Google Cloud Does Not Intend to Take EOS Rewards as a Block Producer. Coindesk.