I don't see the relationship between "competing" blockchains the way I once did. When the Ethereum ICO boom was happening in 2017, it seemed like the market for token-based projects was going to be almost entirely on one blockchain forever. Perhaps, one day, a revolutionary "Ethereum Killer" blockchain would come along and snatch up all the ERC-20 token economy. It seemed like every chain was competing against each other to replace Ethereum. Now it feels like the recent explosion in market cap on Binance Smart Chain (BSC) is reminding us all that decentralization can't begin and end with custodial wallets and centralized DeFi... that's not what we came for. So every project that once seemed to me like a long-shot "Ethereum Killer", now feels like a very necessary "Ethereum Helper". ETH is having problems. I'm trying to stake some ERC-20 UNFI governance tokens and the gas is like $50-$90. Obviously most people don't have the economics of scale to sustain these transaction costs.
It doesn't feel like Tron, Ontology, Harmony, Icon, etc. are competing to capture Ethereum's market share anymore. It feels like the blockchain community that values decentralization is maturing into a network of independent blockchains. Now that Binance Smart Chain has demonstrated the speed with which capital can flow into a new centralized blockchain, it's time for Ethereum-driven DeFi projects to become usable across multiple decentralized blockchains. The value of tokens straddling multiple chains will remain consistent across chains, but the transaction fees and access to staking and DeFi protocols will vary across each chain. If this network of decentralized blockchains is joined by cross-chain DeFi protocols and cross-chain liquidity pools, then the value proposition of Binance Smart Chain is dramatically diminished. Balance can be restored to crypto and a lot of the network traffic burden can be lifted from Ethereum and transferred to many of these "Ethereum Killer" chains which can all now have their day in the sun. BSC offers a centralized solution for using DeFi without high ETH gas fees. But Cross-Chain DeFi protocols have the potential to open bridges between chains that offer robustly decentralized solutions for using DeFi on any blockchain you want. I really like what Unifi (UNFI) is doing in this area and I wrote about it here: The DeFi Interoperability Project I Like Best.
But any time I see opportunity or value in the market, I like to get into a few projects in that sector. So I'm always looking into cross-chain DeFi projects and protocols that are providing real world value that I can test and use right now. As I was recently reading the Unifi Protocol white paper, I kept seeing Sesameseed (SEED) all over the place. Sesameseed is mentioned in the Unifi Protocol white paper on several pages:
Page 10) Sesameseed's "SEED Bridge" and "SEED Swap" power Unifi's Cross-Chain DeFi Protocol.
Page 11) SEED will be used to refund a portion of Unifi trading fees.
Page 16) Summary page lists section for "More about Sesameseed and SEED"
So the Sesameseed (SEED) community and the Unifi project are deeply connected. I'm really interested in what Unifi Protocol is doing, so naturally, I started looking into Sesameseed a little more. But the information on Coinmarketcap & Coingecko was pretty limited:
It seems that some of these projects originating on Tron Network aren't as well known on other networks yet. And exploring Sesameseed ended up taking me on quite a journey... setting up a TronLink wallet and getting into some DeFi protocols on the Tron Network really gave me a lot of hope for the future of decentralization and cross-chain DeFi. Of course, these ecosystems are somewhat small, but when people discover how much opportunity there is on Tron Network right now there will be many more token bridges built for projects to straddle Ethereum, Binance Smart Chain, and Tron Networks. There are many other blockchains incubating DeFi projects and Dapps. I set-up my TronLink browser wallet, went over to TronTrade.io, and bought some SEED with TRX. The transaction fees on TRX are so low it's amazing. But it's also really fast. It feels faster than Binance Smart Chain to me. After swooping up a few SEED, I wanted to see what all these other TRX projects on TronTrade were all about. I was pretty impressed with the value in the Tron Network ecosystem. It's truly pretty small still and it seems like people are going to go fall in love with this network for it's speed, low transaction costs, and strong but relatively small ecosystem so tons of room for growth, both native Tron Network project growth as well as tokens and swaps bridging ERC-20 & BEP-20 tokens to TRC-10 or TRC-20 tokens on the Tron Network. Tron Network has a few different token standards I don't really understand the nuances of each. After poking around for SEED on TronScan, I found some more information on SEED that wasn't available on Coinmarketcap.
A market cap of $4.2 Mil and a total supply of 49.2 Mil SEED... looks interesting. I'm not sure about the supply though, is that MAX supply? I need to learn more about the project too. Sesameseed's website is pretty simple and their Sprout wallet seems to be the thing they are developing and promoting. So my interest in Binance Smart Chain brought me to Unifi Protocol which brought me to SEED, which brought me to DeFi on the Tron Network. This is why I can't keep any base currencies! There's too much to explore out here. I use up all my ETH, BNB, & TRX way too fast! But at least on BSC & Tron Networks you really can do a lot of transactions for a fraction of the cost of Ethereum Network. The TronLink wallet doesn't specify the TRX gas fees very clearly, so I'm not sure if a few transactions cost several TRX and others just 1 TRX or less. I haven't looked very closely at my tronscan transaction history yet. Suffice it to say, that the cost is very low and the network is very fast. I like that the Sesameseed community is behind Unifi Protocol and they've got some existing cross-chain tech that is useful and original that will be powering the Unifi Protocol.
I've not used Sprout wallet yet and I have not transferred in my SEED yet. I'm not sure, but it looks like I may get extra rewards for holding SEED in Sprout wallet. It seems that I can earn SEED for holding Harmony ONE in Sprout wallet, so that may be something I try out next.
I'm still really excited about Unifi Protocol (UNFI), and I'm glad to know more about Sesameseed (SEED) and its role in Unifi. It will be nice to use Sprout wallet to see how much SEED I can earn for holding a few tokens in their. I see so much value in cross-chain protocols and cross-chain DeFi in particular, but I'm also looking at Tron network with new perspective. The ecosystem their is so promising. I really like just.network and all of its various parts: JustStable, JustLend, JustSwap, JustLink, & JustCryptos. So far, I've only used JustSwap & JustLend. I used JustLend to barrow $50 in USDJ against my portfolio as collateral. JustStable looks really cool but the price of USDJ went up above $1.10 today so it's not too stable yet apparently. But I also picked up some JST because I like what Just Network is doing and everyone who sets up a TronLink wallet will eventually interact with some part of Just Network. Just DeFi's TVL is the majority of all TVL on Tron Network at the moment.
The Tron network started as an ERC-20 token on the Ethereum blockchain. I actually just converted the last of my ERC-20 TRX to TRX on Tron Chain. So the Tron network is older, but the Tron project ecosystem is relatively small and ready to explode. Many people are holding TRX and have been holding it for a while on Binance or other exchange account. I think they are missing out on the opportunity within TRX network. Sure, just HODLing TRX is definitely a smart play. Even though Tron has a pretty large market cap already at $4.4 Billion, it could still easily go to $100 Billion in the next 5 years. As someone who didn't see a whole lot of value in Tron a few weeks ago, I can say that, after having used the network, I really like it a lot and it has tons of room to grow. I think TRX has potential to 10x in 3-5 years and 100x in 5-10 years. I think the short term opportunity on the Tron Network is to get involved in some of the low market cap projects that are doing cool things on the Tron Network. Here's a list of the tokens on TronTrade.io
I like TronTrade.io a lot. I used their market book as a springboard to find my way around several projects on the Tron Network. I also found that there were several tokens available on Unifi Protocol's tron exchange which were not available on TronTrade. Although, TronTrade has a much bigger overall list of Tron tokens at this time. I'll be doing a lot of market research on these Tron Network projects and their tokens in the coming weeks, so I'll give updates as I discover value in this market. But I couldn't help but notice that "SEEDGerminator" link at the top of the TronTrade markets list.
It looks like Sesameseed also has an incubator program to grow the community. So Sesameseed is behind Unifi and Sesameseed is actively involved with running an incubator that is promoted through Tron Network's major exchange, TronTrade. I guess I learned a lot more than I imagined I would about Sesameseed's connection to Unifi Protocol. SEED is doing really cool things and I'm sure there will be value in the SEED token so I'm getting involved.
In addition to powering the Unifi Protocol and a community incubator called, SEEDGerminator, holding Sesameseed (SEED) has some pretty interesting sounding benefits. I picked up a few SEED, but I'm not holding them in a Sprout wallet, so I'm not sure if I will get all of the benefits. It sounds like it could be potentially amazing to earn rewards across multiple blockchains. I hope that means that I accumulate rewards on multiple chains, not just that my SEED rewards are transferable to multiple chains. So I'm keeping an eye on how the rewards are distributed in real life, because most of this stuff sounds good on paper, but the true value is best known upon using the tech.
Check back for more updates as I explore the fringes of the crypto economy looking for deep value in the defi wild west. If there are any projects or blockchains that you think I need to know about or want me to research and post about, please share your ideas in the comments. I look forward to hearing from you there. Don't miss this story about random airdrops that sometimes pay off.
Centralized Services (Block To The Future Referral Links)
Coinbase (necessary evil for buying crypto with USD)
Kucoin (best of the centralized exchanges, also has USD buy option)
Bittrex (meh, okay... also has USD buy option)
Binance (used to love it, now, not so much)
BlockFi (so far so good, decent interest rates, not really an exchange though)
Robinhood (get the free stock for signing up and dump Robinhood when we have a good synthetics market on the blockchain)