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Horizen - Closing out 2021 & Looking Ahead to 2022:

Horizen has had an exciting year!

From major partnerships to protocol releases, the past 12 months has brought Horizen and cryptocurrencies closer to mainstream adoption than at any point in the technology’s short history.

Along for the ride were a few standout announcements for major developments to further blockchain scalability and adoption.

As we wrap up the year we would like to highlight this project that has quietly pushed the Web3 space forward in 2021 while teasing what they have in store for our community in 2022.

New Developments in the Horizen Ecosystem

In 2021, Horizen, a zero-knowledge enabled network of blockchains, set out to launch what would be the building blocks for a brand new crypto ecosystem anchored to the core principles of privacy, transparency, decentralization, and censorship resistance.

The first major step in accomplishing this goal was the release of its revolutionary sidechain protocol Zendoo to mainnet.

Zendoo to Mainnet

Zendoo brings to blockchains a cutting edge solution to the famous scalability trilemma. Blockchains like Bitcoin, Ethereum and Solana have historically struggled to maintain a balance between scalability, security and decentralization from within one single chain.

To resolve this problem, Horizen has taken a more modular approach by creating the Zendoo protocol, which allows developers to launch their own independent and highly customizable blockchains that can be optimized for speed, privacy, decentralization, consensus and tokenomics.

Zendoo-based blockchains can leverage the following ecosystem benefits in their design:

  • Scalable and flexible The Zendoo system architecture allows a modular protocol that stresses functionality over design choice. This permits massive scalability, application design freedom, and flexibility.
  • Permissionless and decentralized The Zendoo sidechain model is decentralized in all its components. It leverages zk-SNARKs to verify cross-chain communications without relying on any third party. The largest node network supports Zendoo for further decentralization, which provides resilience and reliability to the network.
  • Private and auditable Horizen’s focus on privacy in its scalability solution design uses the leading privacy technology, zk-SNARKs, to enable verifiable communications between the Zendoo blockchains and the Horizen public mainchain. This approach allows users to create auditable and data privacy-preserving applications to address real-world use cases.

Blaze SDK

This year the Horizen team also introduced a brand new sidechain SDK called Blaze.

Blaze is Horizen’s answer to how developers and traditional companies can leverage blockchain technology to improve their business. The Blaze SDK enables developers to launch a high-speed blockchain on the Horizen network and is designed to achieve high transaction throughput of up to 1,000 transactions per second per chain. The Zendoo platform can support up to 10,000 blockchains running in parallel.

In addition to our Blaze SDK, we have the Latus SDK, a permissionless SDK that enables fully decentralized blockchains and EVM integration for Ethereum smart contract compatibility.

Looking Ahead to 2022 and beyond

Horizen has also revealed some exciting news for 2022, including the launch of its first token sidechain on the Horizen network with the ability to create a token that is different from its native token – ZEN.

The Zenny token (or ‘Zennies’) will be rewarded to Horizen node operators and other loyal community members. While the utility of the token is yet to be revealed, the team has hinted at it being used as a ticket to participate in raffles where you can win rare NFTs.

The release of Zenny represents the first in a 4 stage plan that the team envisions will transform the way developers and end users experience crypto-economies:

  • Stage 1: Testnet launch with the first token chain: Zenny Chain Release the first token sidechain on the Horizen network with the ability to create a token that is different from Horizen’s native token.
  • Stage 2: Sidechain bootstrapping toolkit Allow developers to launch custom native tokens with their own unique issuance model.
  • Stage 3: Multi-asset policy to design your own crypto-economy Create a multi-asset policy to enable developers to launch multiple tokens on a sidechain. Think of this as a framework for developing an ERC20 or ERC721 token standard on the Ethereum blockchain.
  • Stage 4: Multi-tiered yield generation network (Cross-chain DeFi) Create a multi-tiered yield generation network in which liquidity pool contracts, staking contracts or mining nodes could be tokenized so that farmers, validators and node operators can lend out their tokens on different side chains, or farm them across different sidechain liquidity pools in order to earn extra yield.

Conclusion

Horizen is committed to pushing the boundaries of what is possible for blockchain technology. While DEX’s, NFT marketplaces and P2E games have caught the attention of mainstream audiences in 2021, the Horizen team has been carefully laying the groundwork for the next wave of developers who wish to continue the trend of launching scalable and consumer friendly Web3 applications without compromising security or decentralization.

“We are beginning to see a shift in developer sentiment from “scalability at all costs” to “scalability without compromise”. This is ultimately a more balanced and sustainable approach for building a multifaceted crypto-economy,” stated Horizen co-founder Rob Viglione. “Zendoo enables critical components like security and decentralization to be outsourced to different interconnected blockchains while using Zk-SNARKS to preserve privacy and increase computational efficiency for validating transactions. This elegant and modular design allows each chain to play to its specific strengths, making it possible to deliver to end users a web2 experience with web3 guarantees.”

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