The time has come for Cardano to break the $0.10 barrier for the past few months by gaining 62.5% for the past two weeks up to $0.164 from the time of writing.
Cardano is an exciting blockchain project which focuses on scalability, sustainability and decentralization, and in my opinion one of the best decentralization projects that benefits the majority of the community. The lessons learnt from early blockchain generations of Bitcoin and Ethereum have build Cardano to be the 3rd generation blockchain technology and a force to be reckon with. They are like Tesla in the early days where the first Tesla Roadster has been build. I've been a long term Tesla fan and has found a lot of similarities between the two projects.
If you're still new to Cardano, here a comprehensive article from Blockgeek to get you up to speed, or the classic whiteboard class from the man behind Cardano himself is worth watching over and over again.
This article will be a simplified and non-technical version of how Cardano works from a user experience's point of view, while also comparing how both Cardano and Tesla operates in quite a similar manner.
1) Elon Musk vs Charles Hoskinson
The similarities between both of them are their personalities as engineering nerds and their passion to disrupt their respective current technologies. While Elon Musk is accelerating towards a more energy efficient and sustainable future with his top notch electric vehicles, battery, software, solar and energy technology for a better world, Charles has been pushing towards a more sustainable blockchain ecosystem where everyone can together build the best blockchain system in the world. Of course, there are also many differences between the two of them. Even both of them are high profile figures especially in the Twitter space, Elon Musk is a charismatic figure with a hidden sarcasm behind his intelligent face. While waiting for other competitors to fight for the top of the EV podium, Elon's Tesla continues to innovate with new battery technologies for better and cheaper electric vehicles, while we're yet to see the full potential of self-driving and providing free energy to the billions of people. Charles Hoskinson has the Steve Jobs vibe where he is a visionary, creating the next generation blockchain technology aim to be a league on its own, just like Apple vs Microsoft/Google. While he is a more serious figure with his point of views about wikipedia, vaccination and humanity related conversation topics, he can be a cheery figure with his introductory line from a warm, sunny in Colorado. Likewise, he is a teacher who gave many of us a broader insight of how blockchain can help change the world, bringing more value to the community. His whiteboard teaching about Cardano is also the reason that pitches my interest in the crytocurrency world.
Elon Musk once mentioned about his grand master plan which quoted: "first he will build a sports car, then he will use those money to build an affordable car so that he wiill bring in even more money to build an even more affordable car, while also providing zero emission power generation options". Charles's master plan is quoted: "Kill the middleman of necessity, push power to the edges and build systems that are equally fair for the least amongst us". Likewise, both of them are also very hardworking people who will not stop until the goals to help improve billions of lives are met. Both quotes and their mission are inspiring enough to be a long term investor in both of these projects.
2) Scalability in detail
The differences between these two companies in scaling their projects to billions of people worldwide. One of Tesla's way is to build more efficient manufacturing methods so that electric vehicles can be more energy dense, while decreasing the prices significantly so that more people can afford electric vehicles with longer vehicle range. In a similar manner, one of Cardano's method of scalability, as far as what's been implemented, is to provide a decentralized blockchain system which is heavily community-driven so that anyone are able to participate in the network without the need to fork out large amounts of money to invest into the project. Both of these companies provide tons of value to the many consumers around the world. The people who hold TSLA shares are becoming millionaires, while the S3XY models that the owners drive will appreciate in value with consistent software updates and self-driving capabilities. Furthermore, Tesla Powerwall with the Autobidder function enables consumer to monetize energy assets. Similarly, Cardano also brings many utilities that boost the value of the community as will be mentioned below.
3) Shelley - Cardano Staking Era
Let's first discuss the Shelley era. This is the era where Cardano introduced the staking system which I would say is one of the simplest way to earn consistent rewards for participating in the block validation process. There are two main roles: stakepool operator and delegator. For most users, being a delegator is the easiest than being a stakepool operator, though you might earn more as an operator depending on how much ADA is delegated to the specific pool. All you have to do as a delegator is to deposit your ADA to your wallet (main ones such as Daedalus, Yoroi or Adalite), choose a stakepool and then delegate your ADA to them to start earning rewards every epoch. An epoch is basically five days, so technically you are able to earn compounded rewards of up to six times a month. The biggest feature that stands out with other blockchain projects such as TRON, EOS, Tezos and many more are that you don't need to lock your tokens with the stakepools. You are free to withdraw your tokens whenever you want during your delegation. The very small fees that you have to pay are during the confirmation of a pool delegation, transfer between different wallets in the native wallet platform and withdrawal, which is around 0.2 to 2 ADA from my own user experience.
Choosing a stakepool is actually not that hard. The most important parameter is saturation, where you have to make sure that the amount of ADA of the stakepool that you delegated to does not exceed a certain amount of ADA. As of 6th of December, the maximum number of ADA a stakepool should have to earn the maximum rewards is 64 million ADA. Once this number is exceeded, your rewards will drop significantly. This move is to promote the decentralization and fairness to other smaller stakepools where no stakepool takes the majority share of the block rewards. The annual rewards are somewhere in between 4 to 6%, where the median and mean number is around 5.3 to 5.5%. The rewards will be reflected in your wallet automatically after each epoch, without delay. In my opinion, this is one of the best features for Cardano where you feel like you are always in control of your funds at all times, and you're earning stable rewards each epoch. Whatever the fees mentioned in their pools, as long as you don't choose an oversaturated pool, you're good to choose any pool with a decent amount of ADA that are delegated to. I'll make sure to do a follow up article on the details of what you need to know about delegating to a stakepool.
4) Voltaire - Project Catalyst
This is another great feature for Cardano. On many other blockchain or DAO projects, there's a governance system where you can vote on proposals to further improve the blockchain system. However, a lot of the proposals I saw are just simple proposals such as changing staking rates, improve the delegation processes, etc. but they are not as technical and detailed as Cardano's governance system. Project Catalyst is introduced so that people can make meaningful and impactful proposals while others can vote on proposals by giving the "kudos". It is a crowdsourcing platform where whoever has the best proposals shall receive funding from IOHK to proceed with turning ideas into reality. The funds are obtained from the fixed taxes earned from each stakepools every epoch and the ADA is deposited into Cardano's treasury system. Among the many great proposals that I found in Project Catalyst are open source experimental learning, decentralized clinical trials, Project Parvia (Cardano's VR world), Cardano and shopify integration and decentralized event tickets to name a few.
Writing proposals and providing feedback are not as simple as you think. A proposal content contains a detailed structure such as a proposal summary, stating your relevant experiences related to your proposal, detailed plan on how it works, sources of revenue, project roadmap and the potential impact in improving people's lives with Cardano. The feedback is also not as short as one-word ratings. People there actually gave a lot of meaningful suggestions, underlay some of the issues regarding the proposals and lengthy suggestions to improve the proposal further. I see this as one of the best ways to grow the community as the people who propose a project and the people who give the feedback all work hand in hand to provide value to the Cardano community and also solutions to solve the world's problems. Project Catalyst is still under development, but in the future, Cardanians can vote for proposals, give suggestions and rewarded with ADA.
5) Goguen & Basho
Goguen is basically an era of creating DApps and smart contracts in the Cardano ecosystem, while Basho is the era of sidechains and interoperability with the other blockchain systems. According to a blog from Emurgo, Goguen will provide utility to the ADA token holders, where developers can build financial DApps with a functional programme called Haskell, create your own token based on the Cardano blockchain to start your business or project, and develop smart contracts which builds on the foundation of the Byron and Shelley eras, coupled with the peer-reviewed verification methodology to provide one of the most secure blockchain platforms. Although Goguen and Basho are still under development, expecting more exciting updates and releases in the coming year of 2021 especially the DeFi platforms built on Cardano.
Simple Cardano Price Analysis In Comparison With Tesla
The first chart shows Tesla's price chart from their IPO in 2010 until today, while the second chart shows Cardano's price chart since its inception in 2017. It took 10 years for Tesla to finally breakout and hit its all time high in 2020 with a whopping 11,147% increase since January 2010. Cardano's price currently is like Tesla's early days where the Tesla Model S is released to the public. The start and scaling of Goguen will be similar to the release of Tesla Model 3 and its production ramp up. If you believe in the Cardano and Charles's mission to scale the blockchain services to the billions of people out there, which also aligns to what Tesla is doing with their products and technology, you can do your own prediction as to where ADA price will end up =) (not a financial advisor).
I'm a long term investor of both Tesla and Cardano, and found many similarities in their approach to change the world. Cardano has make me realized that it's not about getting rich quickly, its about holding on to assets that can bring meaningful value to the community and to the world to which you and everyone else have the power to improve them. Tesla will not stop until everyone owns an electric vehicle, a solar roof and powerwall underneath their comfy homes which are more efficient and positively impact the environment. Similarly, Cardano will also not stop until everyone realised the potential of cryptocurrencies and the current financial system is disrupted by a decentralized financial system. A lot of people are still impatient about the progress of Cardano, especially the release of Goguen, just like the people who don't believe in Tesla in the early days where they think Tesla cars are expensive and will not scale to millions. With the scientific peer-reviewed approach, I'm very confident that Cardano's Goguen implementation will have less implementation problems than the other blockchain systems who released their projects too early resulting in poor execution and constant debugging, while also providing many useful applications and have many other blockchains to integrate into the Cardano ecosystem, in addition to faster and cheaper transactions with their Ouroboros PoS system. My motto for investment is "slow and steady wins the race". Even if Goguen is released, expecting that there will be many bumps and roadblocks along the way just like Tesla's quality issues in their vehicles and the implementation of ETH 2.0. However, with a great management team behind Cardano and a very supportive community, I see a great future in Cardano and I don't mind the development pace as long as they can create a stable blockchain ecosystem. Therefore, all the best of luck to Cardano and Tesla, hopefully in the next 10 years, I can look back and tell myself that I've just made a great decision in sticking to projects that have already changed the world.