An Introduction to the Scalable Confidential Cryptocurrency
Note: This is NOT a sponsored post.
As always, I only recommend you to mine cryptocurrencies that have the potential to become something big. Pumping and dumping is no longer a viable strategy for GPU miners in 2019. Nowadays, it’s all about investing your hashing power in a good project that has future and stick to it long enough to reap the benefits.
Beam is one of those coins that might have a bright future, and hence might be good to mine. Let’s take a look at it.
What is Beam?
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Beam is a new crypto that aims to combine scalability and anonymity by implementing innovative solutions and protocols.
As we know, some of the biggest issues Bitcoin is experiencing nowadays are related to its scalability limitations. While there are a handful of alternatives that apparently solved this issue, Beam also implements 100% confidential and anonymous transactions. This solves yet another problem modern cryptos face. The ability to chose whether our assets are publicly visible or not is one of the main reasons why we use cryptocurrencies. Which is why, cryptos that do not give us the ability to keep our assets and transactions private are way less interesting than those that do.
Basically, Beam solves both mentioned issues and adds some additional features to the mix that make it a very interesting choice for miners and investors alike.
How Legit is Beam?
Before we move on any further, let’s take a look at the basics. How legit does Beam look like?
Beam is an open-source project – everything is available on github for the community to review. Beam had no ICO and no premine. A fair start is a good start. Instead of profiting from an ICO, the project is being funded by a private treasury. Moreover, now that the Mainnet was launched, a non-profit foundation is being made to allow further governance of the protocol.
Their team is comprised of eight core members (each of which with a legit Linked In profile), 11 additional developers and 11 advisors. They have 13 investors, all of which are medium- to big-scale investor and financial advisory firms. Some of those firms are pretty popular in the crypto space – we are talking about investors such as Lemniscrap, Node Capital, Hexa Labs and Collider Ventures.
I’d say that Beam is being lead, financed and developed by one of the most solid teams I have seen so far in the world of cryptocurrencies. While only time will show how legit and good their team really is, as for today I see enough reasons to trust them.
Having that out of the way, let’s get back to the project itself:
What Other Features Make Beam Interesting?
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Beam’s motto is #PrivacyMatters. Any kind of centralization compromises privacy, which is why Beam features atomic swap. Atomic swap basically allows people to perform peer-to-peer crypto exchange, without the need of a third-party exchanger. Exchangers can be hacked, banned in certain countries or closed, so being able to bypass them might be a good thing.
Note that I’m not saying that exchangers are necessarily bad. However, using an exchanger has its risks, which is why some people might find peer-to-peer, wallet-to-wallet crypto exchange more attractive.
Besides atomic swap and common transactions, Beam allows escrow and time locked transactions thanks to the “Scriptless Script” technology. The project also features opt-in auditability, allowing a third-party auditor to inspect the transactions and any attached documents (such as invoices and contracts) that are stored in the blockchain, upon demand.
Note: Atomic swap and opt-in auditability are WIP and should be implemented this year.
Beam allows users to share any private data they want with each of the involved parties. This means that depending on your preferences, you might make any transaction completely anonymous or make certain data available to the involved parties. Whichever is the case, no info about the sender or the receiver is stored on the blockchain.
As opposed to many other anonymous cryptocurrencies, Beam confidential transactions do not have a negative impact on the blockchain. Most other cryptos have to exchange scalability for privacy. Beam combines both.
Beam is based on the Mimblewimble Protocol. Thanks to the protocol’s “cut-through” feature, the blockchain is very compact and therefore has better scalability.
The Mimblewimble protocol has a different transaction structure. First of all, the concept of ‘Address’ is different. Beam’s protocol only allows bilateral transactions, which means that both the sender and the receiver wallets connect to create a transaction together. Beam has a module called ‘Secure Bulletin Board System’ (SBBS) to allow send and receive funds while one of the wallets is offline. SBBS allows the two wallets to securely exchange encrypted messages, the keys/addresses to which are not being stored in the public blockchain.
Lite Wallets and Full Nodes
A Beam wallet is a lite client that does not verify transactions, and therefore it does not store the full blockchain on your device. This means that Beam wallets are compact and should be connected to a node in order to operate. Beam nodes are the ones that download, validate and update the entire blockchain state. You can host a node by downloading the desktop wallet and enabling it as a full node.
Every local Beam Wallet database also stores its own metadata such as its transaction history. The Wallet Password is needed to decipher that information. Note that the wallet password is only needed to access the transaction history and other metadata of a wallet. If the password lost, the metadata is lost forever. That being said, the funds, stored in that wallet can still be recovered by creating a new wallet and by reintroducing the seed phrase used in the original wallet.
Moreover, those of us who want to keep our transaction history safe can regularly backup the Beam Wallet database file, as well as keep several copies of our wallet password.
How to create a Beam Wallet
Exchange Wallet (recommended for trading/selling/buying beam): HotBit
Based on Equihash, Beam can POW mined with both Nvidia and AMD GPUs. Here’s how to mine it:
While Beam’s purpose is similar to other privacy-based cryptos, its approach to the task at hand is pretty unique. This means that Beam might find its own niche and become pretty popular over time. Considering that it is being developed and financed by a solid team, I am inclined to think that it is a project with future.
That being said, as always do your own research and invest only the amount of money/time/hashing power you can afford to lose. Also, if you find some relevant info about this new project, make sure to share it with us in the comments section below. I will be glad to read your opinion and might even update this review if you point out something important I might have missed.
Thank you for reading. As always, your comments, suggestions and questions are welcome.Subscribe and stay tuned for further updates!
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