In help of our technique to ship a world-class consumer expertise for ZEC, ECC has been working by way of product roadmap planning — pushed by the evolution of the web, trade analysis, neighborhood sentiment and market alternative. Particularly, our analysis has centered on business pockets fashions and consumer expertise, Zcash Shielded Belongings (ZSAs), proof of stake, and cross-chain interoperability.
Based mostly on that work, it has develop into clear that the easiest way for ECC to contribute to the Zcash neighborhood over the subsequent three years is to launch an official ECC pockets on high of a extremely interoperable Zcash protocol that leverages proof-of-stake consensus.
This weblog supplies context, our rationale for our selections and a high-level three-year roadmap. Our imaginative and prescient is expansive, and our roadmap aggressive, however it’s achievable and would require separate however built-in workstreams, with key choice factors on the best way, together with characteristic prioritization, platform and power choice, and go-to-market plans.
We totally count on others within the Zcash neighborhood to have a imaginative and prescient for and ship on different neighborhood priorities, which can embody help for ZSAs. For these excited by studying extra about our analysis and considering on ZSAs, and why we aren’t particularly prioritizing them at ECC presently, please seek advice from our companion weblog. Although our centered efforts shall be in help of our roadmap, as detailed beneath, we totally help and embrace the work of different builders who’re thoughtfully including capabilities to Zcash.
ZEC and the way forward for the web
The subsequent technology of the web, colloquially Internet 3, is upon us. On this new web, every particular person is self-sovereign. There aren’t any centralized gatekeepers to determine who can take part. There aren’t any king-makers who decide who wins and who loses.
Individuals are gaining extra management over their data. It’s a world the place all the things will be confirmed with out pointless disclosure.
In Internet 3, an individual can bypass banks and their underwriters and get a mortgage from dozens or a whole bunch or hundreds of different folks all over the world who select to mortgage property at some charge everybody agrees upon.
It’s a spot the place an individual can supply up collateral of a sure worth, with out disclosing what that collateral is, and the place an individual can retailer collateral in shielded swimming pools with out disclosing who owns it. It’s a spot the place somebody can show they’ve paid off a mortgage, with out ever revealing who they’re or how a lot was loaned.
Banks and bank card corporations, as we all know them, have gotten much less and fewer obligatory. Anybody can earn yield, with or and not using a custodian.
This revolution reaches past finance.
More and more, persons are utilizing each special-purpose and composable options that span domains and blockchains. It’s turning into a collaborative system, the place folks work with each other as a result of it’s in their very own finest curiosity.
This web will depend on a material of interoperability the place distributed capabilities shall be composable in multi-chain purposes. This doesn’t imply all methods should share information with all different methods. In some instances, we might solely must show a truth to a different system, whereas we depend on zero-knowledge cryptography for granular privateness.
On this web, ZEC shall be a vital means for financial good and utilized in options that shield privateness and liberties. However for that to occur, we have to work collectively to make it straightforward for ZEC for use inside and throughout this new cloth.
ECC’s mission and focus
ECC’s mission is to empower folks with financial freedom. In help of that mission, we construct and help expertise to supply folks with entry to a good and open forex inside a framework that protects freedom, dignity, consent and safety.
As we shared beforehand, we’ve advanced our product technique from engineering-driven to market- and consumer experience-driven, and our singular focus is to ship a world-class consumer expertise for ZEC. The language we’re utilizing right here is essential: ECC’s product focus is on the ZEC asset and we intend that ZEC could have a central place within the cloth of Internet 3.
ECC is constructing and supporting merchandise for the ZEC customers of in the present day — and tomorrow. The subsequent iteration of that could be a product bundle known as Halo Arc, which incorporates: Zcashd, ECC Reference Pockets, ECC pockets SDKs, and varied libraries. The precise merchandise ECC delivers will evolve over time as ZECs utility evolves.
Why this roadmap
Our product roadmap planning has been pushed by market analysis and perception into the way forward for the web, our imaginative and prescient for ZEC, and market wants.
Via this work it has develop into clear that the easiest way for ECC to contribute to the Zcash neighborhood over the subsequent three years is to launch a commercially obtainable pockets on high of a extremely interoperable Zcash protocol that leverages proof-of-stake consensus.
There are three key product deliverables included on this plan:
- An official ECC pockets
- Proof-of-stake consensus
An official ECC pockets
Formally releasing a pockets product will permit ECC to have interaction straight with ZEC customers, quickly rollout new options that will or might not require adjustments to the protocol, and iterate and check new protocol-enabled options in live performance with the ECC core staff. We are going to develop our cell and infrastructure groups with the intent of transport a first-release official ECC pockets in 2022. We will even proceed to construct and launch an SDK for different pockets builders and the code shall be open supply.
Zooko launched the opportunity of and advantages of transferring Zcash from proof of labor to proof of stake in a weblog put up earlier this 12 months. Advantages embody the discount in downward stress on the value of ZEC, as most miners instantly liquidate ZEC for BTC or fiat in the present day.
This shift will even improve the utility for ZEC by way of capabilities that embody yield technology by way of staking and a doable path to on-chain governance mechanisms for ZEC hodlers.
We skilled the impression of the introduction of ASICs miners to Zcash in 2018. The quantity of exercise on the Zcash chain rapidly dropped by 80% as many Zcashers had been pressured to desert their GPU miners as their means for buying ZEC.
The curiosity in incomes ZEC from mining-related actions stays robust in the present day. ECC has been surveying guests to the z.money and ECC websites for a number of months. Over 50% of tourists to z.money and 20% of tourists to ECC’s website have self-identified as miners.
There are different advantages of transferring to proof of stake which embody the discount of the ZEC power footprint, offering a doable path to on-chain governance mechanisms, and help for interoperability by addressing issues with proof-of-work transaction finality, amongst different causes additional mentioned beneath.
Shortly after Zooko’s put up, ECC CTO Nate Wilcox outlined what a transition may seem like and doable subsequent steps, and the neighborhood weighed in throughout varied mediums signaling help of a transfer to proof of stake. It was the #1 precedence within the ECC coin holder survey, #2 within the Zfnd ZCAP survey and was strongly supported in social media.
Whereas the Zcash ecosystem is rising in functionality, we imagine that ECC is uniquely positioned to do that difficult work with the standard and velocity at which it ought to be achieved, and that it will likely be properly obtained by present and future ZEC holders.
We imagine the shift to proof of stake is achievable inside three years if we’re capable of focus our time and efforts and rent further expertise.
As highlighted above, we imagine ZEC shall be a vital component of the newly rising web. As we contemplate transferring to proof of stake, some attention-grabbing choices emerge that make cross-chain interoperability extra accessible, extra rapidly.
For instance, using a platform such because the Cosmos stack to help proof of stake brings with it the potential to make ZEC extra transportable throughout chains and unlocks innovation as different builders and organizations can construct on a widely known stack for Zcash.
By leveraging a extremely trusted and used platform resembling Cosmos to maneuver Zcash to proof of stake, we’d instantly notice the good thing about cross-chain interoperability with different initiatives taking part on the platform.
The place we aren’t focusing devoted efforts
We additionally explored different focus areas of curiosity to the neighborhood however elected to exclude them from the ECC roadmap. That doesn’t imply the Zcash neighborhood ought to abandon them. Quite the opposite! We belief that if there’s a market want, others locally will rise as much as ship rather more than ECC is ready to ship by itself.
These areas embody Zcash Shielded Belongings (ZSAs), programmability and scaling.
We spent a substantial period of time on ZSAs and launched an accompanying put up on our findings. Whereas there are thrilling potentialities for ZSAs, we imagine that it’s best for ECC to deal with the roadmap outlined right here and help the complementary efforts of others locally to deliver ZSAs to life. The interoperability work we’re prioritizing may be essential to totally notice broad ZSA adoption.
Programmability is one other space of curiosity for ECC and others locally. Whereas the potential upside is excessive, we imagine constructing interoperable bridges to different good contracting platforms resembling Agoric, Ethereum or Solana could also be a greater and extra speedy path to realizing its advantages.
We additionally frolicked discussing scaling. Make no mistake, we’ll dedicate sources to scaling, however it will likely be one thing woven into user-focused work reasonably than a separate and distinct effort.
Roadmap by 12 months
We have mapped out a high-level roadmap for the subsequent three years. It’s aggressive however achievable and would require separate however built-in workstreams with key choice factors on the best way together with characteristic prioritization, platform and power choice and go-to-market plans.
The next workstreams and deliverables are mapped out by 12 months. Workstreams embody:
- Person Expertise: What ECC intends to ship as consumer going through
- Protocol: What ECC intends to ship throughout the Zcash protocol that helps the consumer expertise
- Campaigns: Complementary go-to-market campaigns
- Geographies: The place ECC intends to spend extra time on adoption and regulatory efforts