Dfinity quietly launched the main ‚Internet Computer‘ network last month

Chief Scientist Dominic Williams spoke to Cointelegraph to explain what this means and the way forward.

After several years of research and development and numerous advances in cryptomonics and computing, Dfinity launched the main network of its „Internet Computer“ on December 18.

Internet Computer promises to be the first blockchain computer running at web speed with unlimited capacity. It achieves this speed through something called Chain Key Technology, which divides smart contract queries into two types: update Bitcoin Millionaire queries and query queries.

Update queries are completed in one or two seconds, depending on the time it takes to produce new blocks. However, query queries can be executed in milliseconds, since any change in status is discarded after execution.

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This allows blockchain developers to create user experiences that compete with existing web applications.

Dfinity founder and chief scientist Dominic Williams explained that the purpose is „to extend the functionality of the public Internet using a novel and advanced blockchain network that also eliminates the need for legacy technologies such as cloud services, databases and firewalls. Ultimately, the Internet Computer allows entrepreneurs and developers to re-imagine how and what they build: a paradigm shift that will change everything.

The launch was just in time for the promised public launch date of Q4 2020, but where were the fireworks? Why are we only hearing about this now? And what happened to the millions of governance tokens?

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Well, the first thing you should realize is that this is perhaps not what some would immediately think of as a major network.

The platform is fully functional and decentralised, managed exclusively by its governing Network Nervous System, and will not suffer any kind of restart on its way to a „Genesis“ version. However, Williams still refers to the current version of Mercury as alpha.

As such, only a fraction of the 469 million governance tokens have been issued so far. These are in the hands of Dfinity, the first investors and several other parties who will vote the remaining tokens into existence once the requirements for Genesis have been met.

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These requirements include the release of large amounts of source code and documentation, along with ongoing security and stress testing as the network expands. With Genesis, which is expected to be achieved within the next two to three months, the network will go into beta.

Currently, the core network runs on nodes located in seven independent data centres in the United States, Germany and Switzerland. The sub-network that controls the network’s nervous system has produced around 400,000 blocks since the December 18 launch and is in the process of incorporating 896 nodes through the Genesis transition.

As reported by Cointelegraph, the current futures price of over USD 21 on ICP’s governance tokens would place Dfinity just outside the top five digital assets by market capitalisation. While that may still be on hold for now, this massive undertaking has just passed another important milestone.