To provide an overview of Cardano, including insights relating to its origin, market position, and what sets it apart in the cryptocurrency space.
Cardano, like other cryptocurrencies, is a digital coin and proof-of-stake (PoS) blockchain that has value and can be used to carry out monetary transactions. The coin was conceptualized by one of the co-founders of Ethereum, Charles Hoskinson, after he recognized the need for a more standardized and scalable blockchain compared to what was available.
Hoskinson collaborated with Jeremy Wood, a previous colleague at Ethereum, and the two joined heads together in pursuit of Cardano. Besides playing a significant role in setting up the core principles on which Cardano is built, Hoskinson and Wood do not own or operate the blockchain.
Cardano was developed in 2017. It operates in the market using the token symbol, ADA, named after Ada Lovelace, a 19th-century mathematician. Cardano was also named after a scientist - Gerolamo Cardano, an Italian polymath. "The Cardano blockchain can be used to build smart contracts, and in turn, create decentralized applications and protocols."
Major stakeholders at the Cardano blockchain include The Cardano Foundation, IOHK, and Emurgo. The Cardano Foundation is a non-profit that helps to ensure the blockchain's security and market it to consumers and investors. Hoskinson and Wood established IOHK in 2015 to handle the Cardano blockchain's design and engineering.
"Embargo acts as a large funding entity to financially support Cardano and assist with its development."
The Cardano blockchain seeks to address certain current issues in the blockchain industry, such as providing a more secure blockchain and voting system for token holders, "separating accounting and computational layers, and developing a consensus mechanism that is infinitely scalable."
What Sets it Apart
Since Cardano was developed as a PoS blockchain protocol, it is estimated to have energy efficiency that is 4 million times that of bitcoin (BTC), similar to comparing the "energy usage of a household versus a small country."
While Cardano and Ethereum are similar (both are smart contract platforms), the latter uses a proof-of-work (PoW) blockchain, a less scalable and secure consensus mechanism. "Cardano distinguishes itself by using mathematical principles in its consensus mechanism and a unique multilayer architecture, which makes it stand out from other competing blockchains."
Another thing that makes Cardano unique is the amount of care involved in its upkeep. As earlier mentioned, The Cardano Foundation, IOHK, and Emurgo are the parties responsible for handling all aspects of its operation.
Cardano currently has the fourth-largest crypto market capitalization of $13.74 billion behind Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Tether. It currently has about 31.11 billion ADA supply in circulation.