Introduction
The Icarus network is a scalable platform for Decentralized Applications (Dapps). It is built upon three core principles:
Support the existing Dapp development eco-system,
• Scale to the transaction throughput needs of supported Dapps, and
• Enable Dapps with distributed storage, distribution, and analysis of their data.
1. Since the 2015 launch of the Ethereum network, over 2,812 Dapps have been developed and released on the platform. We believe this interest and education in Dapp development is a good thing, and we want to enable developers who have already invested their time learning these skills to be able to create even more powerful applications. The Icarus Virtual Machine (IVM) is designed to be backwards compatible with the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) and Ethereum bytecode, so Ethereum and Solidity smart contracts will be able to run on Icarus, although not all Icarus smart contracts will be able to run on the Ethereum platform.
2. Scalability has been a prominent issue in existing distributed ledger technologies. Bitcoin validates and adds transactions to its ledger at a rate of about 7 transactions per second (tx/s), and Ethereum handles an average of about (15 tx/s). This paper introduces the novel Delegated Asynchronous Proof-of-Stake (DAPoS) algorithm, which has reached a peak throughput of around 100,000+ tx/s in optimal conditions. Of course, there is substantial overhead in incorporating the consensus into a functioning protocol, but even a 90% reduction in throughput still makes Icarus a more scalable Dapp platform than Ethereum by several orders of magnitude.
3. We believe the future of decentralized applications will emulate the world of centralized ap- plications we have today. We intend to learn from the way these centralized applications scale to plan for our decentralized future. Since most centralized applications at scale use far more data than could reasonably be stored in a shared ledger, Icarus is built to support applications that utilize any quantity of data at any scale. We introduce the idea of off-chain Artifacts that live in the Icarus Artifact Network (IAN ), which runs parallel to the shared ledger. Dapp developers can incorporate bulky data like media content, ”internet of things” data, or AI/machine learning data, into the logic of their smart contracts without sacrificing security or scalability. Finally, and arguably most important, we introduce the Icarus Guru which enables the trustless analytical querying of data distributed across the IAN. Data researchers can pay data owners to query their data for analytics, without requiring the data owners to reveal their data.
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