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Good Year for Most, Rough for Some
2020, so far, has been a sort of balanced year for cryptocurrencies. One might have expected the pandemic would slow things down, especially with the market crash we saw in March, but that hasn’t been the case so far. Overall, the market has done pretty well with constant stability, increasing user base, and growing innovation.
But the same isn’t the case for all of the networks out there. While most enjoyed the increased attention, some failed to satisfy their networks’ needs and kept losing demand. As an extension to the “Top-performing coins during the COVID-19 Pandemic”, we have now come up with the worst-performing coins during the same period.
The Worst Performers
Zilliqa is a cryptocurrency that essentially falls into the payments and protocol category. The project is about 4 years old and was born out of a team of researchers from the University of Singapore. The team focused on hardcore research and experimentation. Because of this, it was only after a significant amount of experiments and trials that they decided to go ahead with an ICO, capped at $22 million in January of 2018.
To understand the fall of Zilliqa, we first have to understand why people thought Zilliqa had potential. Zilliqa relies on a method of blockchain scaling known as sharding, the process of breaking down blocks to increase scalability and speed. The team had an initial test run in late 2017 with 3600 nodes on the network and reached a maximum throughput of 2488 tx per second. At the time, this was a remarkable speed for a blockchain, even faster than Stellar Lumes (1000-1500) and close to Ripple (2500-3000).
Since late 2019, the ZIL token has been in a constant free fall. ZIL peaked in May 2018 at $0.2303. During the time, ZIL showed a lot of potentials. In March 2020, ZIL touched its all-time low of $0.0024, effectively losing 99% of its value.
- Ticker Symbol: ZIL
- Website: ziliqa.com
- Traded on: OKEx, Bithumb, Binance, etc
- Current Place in the Top 100: 57
- ATH: $0.2303
- ATL: $0.0024
New Economic Movement
“New Economy Movement” or NEM was created as an NXT fork. It was launched in the summer of 2014, before the stable platform release at the end of the 1st quarter of 2015. It transformed into a completely new codebase, following the eventual dismissal of the NXT fork. NEM’s blockchain technology is sometimes referred to as a Smart Asset System, and it’s considered the world’s first Smart Asset blockchain.
2017 was probably the only time anyone ever talked about the immense innovation opportunities that NEM could offer. NEM, being a “smart asset” blockchain, was looked up with great interest as the idea of combining a real-world asset with the blockchain was intriguing, to say the least. All this interest pushed the demand for XEM, NEM’s native token, to great heights. In early 2018, XEM peaked at $1.89, which pushed NEM to be the 7th most valued cryptocurrency back then. In mid-2020, XEM was valued at a meager $0.0498, a 99.97% drop from the ATH.
- Ticker Symbol: XEM
- Website: nem.io
- Traded on: Binance, Coinbase, BitFinex, etc
- Current Place in the Top 100: 31
- ATH: $1.89
- ATL: $0.00008
Steem is a reputation-based social cryptocurrency and also the native token of the Steemit platform. Steem was the brainchild of blockchain innovator Dan Larimer, who envisioned a reputation-based social network that gives back users privacy. About one year after the blockchain launch, Dan Larimer quit his job as the Steemit company’s CTO on March 14, 2017. Subsequently, he stopped his participation in the Steem blockchain’s development to focus on his new cryptocurrency project EOS.
The Steem blockchain aimed to provide a platform for decentralized application hosting and decentralized data storage and a mechanism for social rating. Using delegated proof-of-stake as consensus protocol (dPOS), a fast block time of three seconds and zero-fee transactions for users was made possible.
Like the rest of the projects on the list, Steem failed to capitalize upon the fame and interest it received after the 2017 bull run. Steem has been the biggest loser in market cap, seeing a constant free fall from the top 20 to below 100. At its peak, STEEM reached a high of around $8.19, but since then, the price has fallen to $0.2 and below.
- Ticker Symbol: STEEM
- Website: Steem.com
- Traded on: Binance, Poloniex, BitFinex, Kraken, etc
- Current Place: 107
- ATH: $8.19
- ATL: $0.0719
IOTA is a distributed ledger designed to record and execute transactions between machines and devices in the Internet of Things (IoT) ecosystem. The ledger uses a cryptocurrency called mIOTA to account for transactions in its network. The idea behind building a new form was DLT mechanism was to ensure IOTA could be potentially quantum resistant. The Tangle, which is the data structure behind IOTA, is a particular kind of directed graph, which holds transactions. Each transaction is represented as a vertex in the graph. When a new transaction joins the tangle, it chooses two previous transactions to approve, adding two new edges to the graph.
To honestly portray the reasons for IOTA’s doom, one has to look into several cases that cumulated to what it is today. Events range from developing flaws, community instability to outright malpractice. In a post on IOTA’s Failure, we deeply discussed the protocol’s potential and how internal problems diminished everything the protocol hoped to achieve.
Because of the constant internal troubles, IOTA has lost most of its value. In late 2017, IOTA was the 5th most valued cryptocurrency project. But today, the token has dropped several dozen places, and the token has lost 99% of its value from the ATH. From its ATH of $5.25 in December 2017, IOTA reached its ATL of $0.081 in March 2020, making it the worst affected token of the list.
- Ticker Symbol: mIOTA
- Website: https://www.iota.org/
- Traded on: Binance, CoinSpot, BitFinex, Kraken, etc
- Current Place in the Top 100: 26
- ATH: $5.25
- ATL: $.0817