Originally Posted April 11th 2018
Were going to be continuing our series today with another midcap token Particl. This token was suggested to me in the comments of one of my previous articles and I hadn’t heard of the project before. Naturally, I picked it then, since this series is also an exercise for me to learn and research coins.
Particl launched as a token in July of 2017 and was built on the latest Bitcoin codebase. The project itself evolved out of the Shadowcash project when the team decided that the Shadowcash project had received too much negative attention and wanted a fresh start. Along with the clean slate in terms of their reputation the team pivoted to focus on building a private, P2P, decentralized marketplace. Privacy is still a component of the project but the main focus is now the decentralized marketplace. Think Ebay but with blockchain and its private and you can use any currency you want on the platform. Ok, so its not really like Ebay, but you get the idea.
Particl has its own blockchain and token called PART that uses the Proof of Stake consensus algorithm. PART did not have an ICO but instead had all of its tokens put into circulation from a 1:1 exchange with SDC (Shadowcash). The total amount of tokens distributed is a tad under 9 million. The current price of PART is $11.62 or 0.00171655BTC (coinmarketcap does not list an ETH pairing). The project has a total market cap of around $103 million making it the second mid cap coin in a row that we’ve looked at this week. This market capitalization places PART at rank 94 on CMC.
The Particl token (PART) itself can be sent in three different manners over their network which convey varying levels of privacy. They are public, blind, and anon. Public transactions are just that, public. The same as if you’re sending Bitcoin from one wallet to another. Everyone can see its happening. This transaction is the cheapest on their network and is also the default setting.
Next, there is the blind transaction. With the blind transaction, the sending and receiving amounts are only visible to the sender and the receiver or anyone else that is given access by the two participants. This type of transaction makes use of the Confidential Transactions (CT) protocol built for Bitcoin. The Particl team boasts the first ever use of CT on the Bitcoin Core code as well as the first use on Segwit. This type of transaction is more expensive to send than a public one, but still less than the final option. If you would like to learn about the nuts and bolts behind the CT protocol please see the link here.
Lastly, there are Anon or anonymous transactions that may be sent using Particl. In this type of transaction the addresses of the sender and receiver as well as the amounts sent are completely hidden. To accomplish this task the team uses the RingCT protocol that has been popularized by Monero. This transaction type is the most expensive to send on the network. Full details regarding the RingCT protocol may be found in the original whitepaper here.
Furthermore, the token itself functions on a modified Proof of Stake consensus protocol called Particl Proof of Stake (PPoS) a highly original name. The consensus protocol functions largely similar to that of PoS and the main tenants of the protocol still ring true such as having more coins for a longer time is better for returns. What PPoS has on top of that is additional security and utility features. Additionally, staking coins will reward users who do so with a 5% return for the first year, decreasing by 1% each year following until a bottom at 2% where the return will remain indefinitely (we are currently still in year 1). Lastly, staking of coins allows for voting participation within the Particl community. This voting system is built into PPoS and allows for blockchain wide votes or polling of other stakers.
Now, switching gears a bit, lets tackle some other features of the Particl platform. They include a decentralized p2p exchange, universal use of currency on that exchange with built in shapeshifting, a private Instant Messaging (IM) system, ,data storage networks (DSN), and decentralized escrow (on the marketplace). Let’s start off with the DSN.
The data storage networks are imperative to the functionality of the overall Particl system. The networks are used to store any data off chain. Because of that aspect, the overall network is free to scale without being bogged down with data such as pictures that would otherwise be stored on chain. This feature really just amounts to a set of software that is used to store and retrieve data on the internet. Some of the ones you may have heard of include HTTPs, TOR, and IPFS.
Next we have the messaging system. The messaging system employed by Particl is called SecureMessaging (SMSG). This system is Particl’s own DSN and is a decentralized P2P messaging network. How it works is a portion of everyone’s encrypted messages and data are stored on all the nodes in use for a limited amount of time and for a fee. Therefore all nodes are constantly checking encrypted messages to determine if they were sent to them by recalculating an HMAC hash. If the calculation fails then the message was not meant for that node. An important part of this system is that the messages contain almost no metadata besides the hash, payload (message), and a temporary public key. All encryption for the messaging is done client-side.
Lastly, we have come to the best part of the platform, the exchange. As stated earlier Particl is seeking an Ebay-esque completely decentralized exchange and system for the buying and selling of goods. This platform will be both protocol and currency agnostic, and have its own 2 party trustless escrow to boot.
The most intriguing feature of the marketplace will be that the user will be able to buy and sell with any currency, thats right any. The team made this decision for a couple of reasons. First and foremost they don’t want their platform to be limited by its own currency, that would discourage use. Secondly, there are so many coins out there being used by so many people that allowing for any currency will lower this barrier to entry to use their platform. Now, the functionality will be made possible by Atomic swaps and automatic conversion to PART for the transactions. The automatic conversions to PART occur because for the privacy functions of the system to work, PART must be used. Atomic swaps are then used to link all of the systems together. If you are unfamiliar with atomic swaps please see this link.
The last feature I would like to discuss is 2-party trustless escrow. In a typical escrow system, there are 2 parties who are wishing to trade or exchange services. Naturally, neither one trusts the other to hold up their end of the contract if they deliver their side first. For a millennia, buyers and sellers have by having a 3rd party mediator who makes sure everyone gets what they want from the contract. That system however is not without issues and can be disastrous if the 3rd party holder is in any way compromised.
Particl’s solution does not involve a mediator at all, but an idea of mutually assured destruction. In Particl’s system, if two individuals are trading, each one must provide collateral that is locked up with the funds that are sent for an item. The seller places an amount equal to or less than the worth of the item they wish to sell in a multi-sig address. The buyer then places an amount equal to that of the seller PLUS the funds required to purchase the sellers item in that same address. That address is then locked and the funds cannot be restored to either party until both agree that the transaction as been complete. Following completion of the sale, both parties are returned their collateral and the seller is given payment of their item. The only way to retrieve the locked funds is for both parties to agree on the completion of the sale, and if no agreement is made the funds are lost forever. This destruction of the funds comes from a predetermined timer built into the smart contract holding the funds. This timer can be extended at the agreement of both parties. Lastly, all of the information used here is completely untraceable and anonymous, since all of these functions are being done in PART and with use of the CT protocol.
The current roadmap for PART has the team done with all of the features leading up to their alpha release of their marketplace. The alpha of the marketplace was set for Q1 of 2018 release and that time has come and gone, but the team is hard at work and providing daily updates for the marketplaces release on their Twitter account here. Currently, the team has finished 2 of the 6 categories they are targeting with a 3rd soon to be completed. The two that are completed involve functionalities for buyers wishing to check out and the returning of deposits to sellers after a successful sale. Furthermore, the team has announced via Twitter that they are also seeking cold-staking options for their mobile wallet.
PART is listed as being traded on 4 exchanges on coinmarketcap, however 99% of the volume is done on only two of those exchanges. Those two exchanges are Bittrex and Upbit. Bittrex handles 64% of the volume on a BTC/PART pairing. Upbit has the same pairing and has 35% of daily volume for the token. Links to both platforms below.
Bittrex — https://bittrex.com/
Upbit (in Korean) — https://upbit.com/
If you would like to learn or read more about the Particl project please see the links below!
Website — https://particl.io/
Reddit — https://www.reddit.com/r/Particl/
This article was a day late but I’m hoping its not a dollar short. The PART project is very complicated had has a ton of interesting and detailed features that make it a worthwhile project to check out. I’m hoping I was able to do it some justice. I am not associated with the PART project in any fashion. If you enjoyed this article please follow me either here, on Twitter @thant1194, or on InvestFeed @thant11. Thank you and good luck trading, I need to return some video tapes (and also write the OCN article for later tonight).