What is Fantom (FTM)?

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7 min read

The world of cryptocurrencies is constantly developing and expanding. As a result, many promising projects with great potential are appearing. One of them is Fantom. If you don’t know what Fantom is, don’t worry. In this article we will tell you all about what it is and how it works.

Fantom is a very ambitious project that aims to create a smart contract platform that is characterized by executing fast and inexpensive transactions. With these features it aims to surpass the Ethereum network as the main smart contract network.

Through the use of advanced Directed Acyclic Graph or DAG technology, Fantom intends to offer near-infinite scalability in addition to instant transactions for near-zero cost. In addition, the developer team is also working on a high-performance virtual machine that features secure smart contract execution such as the EVM (Ethereum Virtual Machine).

As a high-speed, high-performance platform, Fantom’s vision is to become the core part of the IoT (Internet of Things) infrastructure for emerging smart cities. Among its goals, Fantom is pursuing the idea of executing up to 300,000 transactions per second and having the ability to communicate with multiple service providers. Therefore, Fantom believes it is the solution for storing a large volume of data securely.

History of Fantom

Dr. Ahn Byung Ik is the founder and CEO of Fantom. He also holds a PhD in computer science and is president of the Korea Food Technology Association. Ahn Byung is known for being a contributing author to Fortune magazine. He has also been frequently published in South Korea’s best-known business media. To top it off, this entrepreneur founded a food technology platform called SikSin, which is very similar to Yelp.

The platform has more than 22 million monthly visits and the mobile application has more than 3.5 million downloads. As we can see, this founder has a great track record of success.

Moreover, influencing Fantom’s creation is CIO Michael Kong. Kong has several years of blockchain experience as a smart contract developer. Prior to his involvement in the development of Fantom, he held the position of Chief Technology Officer at the blockchain incubator known as Block8. He also built one of the first Solidity decompilers and also one of the first smart contract vulnerability detectors.

Finally we have Andre Cronje, the developer behind Yearn as well as many other DeFi products. He is also co-author of the Fantom consensus algorithm, known as Lachesis. He is currently still involved in the project and has discussions with the developer team frequently. He always oversees major updates and releases. Andre has stated on several occasions that when the bridges are ready, he will move his most important dApps to Fantom, as it is a faster and cheaper platform than Ethereum.

 

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How does Fantom work?

Fantom’s operation uses the protocol divided into three layers. Each layer has different responsibilities from the others and each one is of vital importance. These layers are the Opera core layer, the Opera Ware layer and the application layer. In the following we will see each of them and what their main functions are.

 

OPERA’s core layer

The OPERA core layer is responsible for maintaining consensus through the nodes in the Lachesis Protocol, which will be discussed shortly. It is also responsible for creating events. Through a DAG it is responsible for confirming transactions, and the nodes are able to process them all at once thanks to the use of DAG technology.

Each transaction processed will be stored in each node of the network. This operation is very similar to how a blockchain stores transactions. The difference is that with DAG technology the data needs to be stored at each node. Instead, the network employs another kind of node known as a token node for the purpose of validating transactions

Witness nodes are responsible for corroborating the validity of the data held by the nodes in the network. These witness nodes depend on a consensus method known as Delegated Proof of Stake used to designate the validating nodes.

 

OPERA Ware coating

The OPERA Ware layer is located at the core of the protocol. This layer was designed to execute functions on the platform such as issuing rewards and payments in addition to writing what is known as “Story Data“.

 

OPERA’s application layer

OPERA’s application layer is located at the top. This layer contains the publicly available APIs that developers will use to allow their dApps (Decentralized Applications) to interact with the OPERA Ware layer.

Story Data is about Fantom’s method of making it possible to track all transactions that have been executed on the network, unlike Ethereum, where tracking past transactions is limited.

In Fantom, each transaction and execution of a smart contract stores a tiny piece of data, the Story Data. This data is used in functions for tracking and tracing transactions. This is a valuable function in certain industries where indefinite data logging is important to users. An example of such industries would be supply chain management or healthcare. Thanks to this functionality, Fantom can confirm transactions in less than 2 seconds. Such transactions cost approximately $0.00001.

What is Lachesis?

Lachesis is an aBFT or Asynchronous Byzantine Fault Tolerance consensus algorithm. This algorithm is based on DAG or local acyclic directed graph that contains the relation of previous events and is responsible for calculating an exact final order of independent transactions at each node. What stands out most about this mechanism is that it allows connecting to any independent blockchain developed within the Fantom network.

 

In such a network, each application developed within the platform has its own blockchain. This mechanism makes it possible to efficiently solve scalability problems because the performance of each of these blockchains is not affected by the overall data traffic of the network.

 

Similarly, each blockchain built on the Fantom protocol is independent of the others, but they are all connected to Lachesis and each can interact with the others.