Legal Name: Elixxir LLC
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Founder(s): David Chaum
Social Media Following: 263 Likes on Facebook, 2,877 Followers on Twitter
Elixxir is building a Blockchain-based platform that can facilitate messaging and payments with speed, scale, and privacy. After nearly two years of development, Elixxir emerged from stealth mode in September 2018. Elixxir founder, David Chaum, believes that the future of Blockchain is contingent upon creating a product along the lines of WeChat – messaging + payments.
Blockchain, in its current form, has two fundamental limitations – scalability and speed. It takes the Bitcoin Blockchain nearly 10 minutes to add another block and can process only 1MB per block. This means that the Bitcoin Blockchain can only handle up to 7 transactions per second as compared to VISA’s 24,000 transactions per second (test result). This limits its applications in many areas such as banking, payments, and trading that require speed and scale.
Consensus is an important part in ensuring the success of a transaction on any distributed ledger. Before a Block is finalized, it must be propagated to the majority of the system in the case of Bitcoin Blockchain.
Elixxir is able to attain speed and scale by its unique consensus mechanism and sophisticated architecture. A randomly selected team (of 5-30 member nodes) is assigned to process a block rather than the entire/majority network. Thus, Elixxir is able to process a large number of transactions in seconds. Through a combination of cutting edge protocols and storing the token in a block rather than the transaction (Bitcoin Blockchain), Elixxir claims to be able to maintain ‘true privacy’. The observer can only see the Blockchain without being able to contextualize and analyze it, therefore, maintaining the privacy of users and transaction. (sample Blockchain by Elixxir) “With Elixxir, no-one can read your messages or steal your money. Period.”
Origin and Founding Team
Elixxir was founded by Dr. David Chaum, a pioneer in the field of cryptography and the ‘forefather’ of the crypto movement. David masterminded eCash, an anonymous electronic currency, 30 years before Bitcoin, in his 1983 paper “Blind signatures for untraceable payments.” In 1990, David founded an e-cash company called DigiCash to develop commercial applications based his research in cryptography.
“You can pay for access to a database, buy software or a newsletter by email, play a computer game over the net, receive $5 owed you by a friend, or just order a pizza. The possibilities are truly unlimited.” While these are ideas associated with the current crypto revolution, these were the words David used to describe eCash in his keynote address to the First International Conference on the World-Wide Web held in 1994.
David has a Ph.D. in Computer Science from UC Berkeley. David started his career as an academic and has taught at NYU Graduate School of Business and the University of California. David has 65+ academic publications, which have been cited by thousands of academic papers, and has 30+ patents to his credit. Apart from his personal research work, David founded the International Association for Cryptologic Research, an eminent cryptography group at the Center for Mathematics and Computer Science in Amsterdam.
Performance and Trends
In October 2018, Elixxir raised $5M in seed funding from Chris Larsen, co-founder of Ripple, and H&D Company Pte Ltd. Elixxir is still in the initial stages of development, with only a technical brief (version 0.7) and a demo blockchain having been released. A release date for the rest of the details and product hasn’t been announced yet. However, within 10 days of its launch in September 2018, Elixxir received interest from 1,500+ parties to run Elixxir network nodes and 500+ developers looking at decentralized applications on Elixxir.
Elixxir formally announced its node selection process in January 2019. This “marks the beginning of the governance process for the Elixxir platform.” These nodes will help support Elixxir in the ‘real world’.
While Elixxir has generated a lot of interest, there are startups working on solving the challenge around scale and speed and are developing their own platforms. Hashgraph and Constellation Labs are some of the newer platforms.
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