Privacy coin Zcoin has announced specifications for its new “incentivized nodes” system to help secure its blockchain. Similar to DASH’s Masternode network, “Znode” machines will always host a complete download of the chain and assist other nodes in verifying complex transactions.
Zcoin Founders Take a Pay Cut to Reward Znode Operators
Zcoin’s developers posted details about rewards and requirements for Znode operators on the official website. They will need to hold at least 1,000 Zcoins (XZC), have a computer or VPS with a fixed IP address and 1GB of RAM — and enough disk space to store the entire blockchain (currently around 25GB).
Znodes will receive 15 ZXC from each block reward, or 30 percent. It’s estimated Znodes will hold about 50-60 percent of total XZC supply, depending on how many join.
To pay node operators, Zcoin will also reduce its “founders’ rewards” system, which provided 20 percent (or 10 XZC) from every block mined to founding devs and investors. Those founders, including Poramin Insom, Roger Ver and Tim Lee, will take a 50 percent cut in their income. Zcoin will also increase the reward share given to its “team and bounty wallet”.
Znodes are currently running on the testnet and will launch live in late November/early December 2017. The change will require a hard fork, and developers are communicating with miners to make sure it goes smoothly.
Strong Node Layer Needed to Process More Complex Transactions
Speaking to Bitsonline, Zcoin’s Reuben Yap said Znodes would “ensure a strong node layer” for the network.
“Beyond the economical benefits, Zerocoin verification is particularly computationally intensive and proofs also take up quite a bit of size (25 kb currently).”
Zcoin transactions use “zero-knowledge cryptographic proofs”, which its developers claim set a higher privacy standard than coins using methods like built-in mixing or ring signatures.
Developers estimate around 1,700-3,000 Znodes will come online within the first year. As an anonymous/privacy coin, Zcoin will also need a trustless way to verify operators have the funds. Yap explained:
“Although the 1,000 XZC is kept in your own wallet, it’s tagged to a specific address which you generate a key from. You use this key in your Znode hosted elsewhere so that it links to your 1000 XZC and identifies it as a Znode, but does not expose your funds.”
Price Spike and Privacy Coin Popularity
Like fellow privacy coins DASH and Monero, Zcoin has enjoyed a price spike in the past few days. According to CoinMarketCap it’s $23.35 USD at press time, up 25 percent in the past day. That means Znode owners will need to hold $23,350 USD worth of the currency.
Note that Zcoin is different to Zcash — the similar names have caused some confusion for newcomers, especially given that both coins launched around the end of 2016.
In case there’s some confusion over the different “Z-name” privacy coin projects, Zcoin’s FAQ clarifies:
A common misconception is that Zcoin is a fork of Zcash. Zcoin is based off the Zerocoin paper while Zcash is based off the Zerocash paper. While the Zerocoin paper and Zerocash paper share common authors and both use zero knowledge proofs, they rely on different cryptography. There is otherwise no relation between the two projects.
Yap said some merchants (including “real-world” locations) have begun to accept Zcoin, but that hasn’t been a priority so far. Zcoin developers are focusing on user experience such as light wallets, hardware and mobile wallets first.
“We are however exploring some very interesting markets, but will announce this as a later time,” he added.
Have you ever used Zcoin? What’s your opinion? Please share your thoughts in the comments.
Images via Zcoin, Pixabay