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Factom Protocol Newsletter

March 15, 2019

It has been a busy couple of weeks within the Factom Protocol ecosystem. Let's dive right in with our new newsletter format.

Goals

Many people aren’t aware of the virtues of the Factom Protocol. We’re going to use these updates to help resolve this. Let’s start by sharing our goals. Our goal is to make the Factom Protocol the world's dominant blockchain platform. We aim to be a global utility for data integrity—a source of immutability so perfectly designed that most applications will handle everything invisibly in the background, including the use of our two tokens. And we will be the dominant tokenization platform thanks to the Factom Asset Token Protocol. As the recent report by Electric Capital shows, Factom Protocol developers have been VERY busy compared to most blockchain projects out there. We're quietly investing in development and building towards our goals at a furious pace.

Usage and Development

The Factom Protocol continues to see real-world usage with more on the horizon. The protocol metrics site Factoshi showcased a rise in cumulative entries from 17,386,651 to 17,434,307 in the last 30 days while new chains increased from 7,755 to 7,974.

Paul Bernier of Luciap Technologies released a fantastic guide that will teach you how to write your first Factom Protocol application in JavaScript.

I recently talked to Julian Fletcher-Taylor of DBGrow Inc, which is coordinating the creation of the Factom Asset Token Protocol (FAT), and he said,

Progress on FAT has been solid the last couple of weeks. We are continuing to make incremental changes to enhance the efficiency of the FAT daemon and enhanced the functionality in interactions between the fat daemon and wallet. We are currently making changes across the standards for readability and to bring them in line with changes we have made in the fat implementation, and have begun work on trustees issuance and a mineable token standard.
Considering FAT turns the Factom Protocol into a tokenization platform, this progress is exciting. In case you missed it,
here's an interview with Julian regarding the FAT protocol.

We're also thrilled about the news out of Factom Inc that Vodii will be using, in their words,

Factom Inc's Harmony BaaS technology to improve our customer’s experience, while also boosting the security of our services, increasing our team’s productivity, and preserving precious natural resources.
It doesn't hurt that Vodii's first customer using the Factom Inc solution (Edina Realty) is a Berkshire Hathaway subsidiary. After the recent Equator Homes news out of Factom Inc, this is yet more evidence that they're establishing significant footholds in the mortgage industry vertical.

Version 6.2.1-RC2 of factomd is currently being tested on the community testnet. It has a huge number of protocol improvements. We're hoping to have it deployed to mainnet by next week which will be a big milestone for the protocol.

"Who," one of the Factom Protocol core developers, has a new blog post out. In case you missed it, here's the previous one.

A fascinating use case came out of the SXSW hackathon for Factom where an index of neural network models is published to the public blockchain to create an open network for discovery and collaboration. These developers obviously understand the Factom Protocol better than most as they said,

Using the factom blockchain without owning cryptocurrency is possible. Via the API's provided by the companies that maintain support and maintain the Factom Protocol allows an end user to make use of blockchain data as easily as any other API.
And finally, thanks to the work of the ANO Blockchain Innovation Foundation, the Factom Protocol is sponsoring Odyssey, the largest hackathon in the world, April 12th - 14th. Sphereon, one of the companies that builds on the Factom Protocol, will be there and an entire hackathon track is dedicated to the protocol. We're looking forward to seeing what teams build.

Governance

The Factom Project began in 2014 but it wasn't until April of 2017 that governance (along with infrastructure) was decentralized. The community has been building out governance infrastructure such as voting mechanisms, processes and guidelines, transparency and accountability systems, and maybe most importantly, efficient communication tools. When you're as decentralized as we are (and we claim to be one of the most decentralized blockchain projects there is), efficient governance is critical. Governance is hard when you have more centralized systems, but when your governance is an international coalition of companies and people of different backgrounds and cultures, it's even more challenging. But we're making substantial progress and are proud of the innovative work we're doing. We're a passionate, opinionated, driven community; the progress is real and we're focused.

Our recent Guide Election resulted in the reelection of three incumbents and two new faces. The campaign promise we heard most often was to ensure that additional Standing Parties are brought into governance in 2019, with most agreeing that token holders should be the next group to get voting rights. While the Factom Protocol is already more decentralized than most projects out there, bringing token holders into governance will further decentralize the protocol while creating additional checks and balances.

The primary Factom Protocol governance document we refer to as "Doc 001" went through the amendment process recently. That amendment process is part of our automated solution for decentralized document creation, ratification, and amendments. I'll write more about that process for the next update in two weeks.

The protocol's Legal Research Working Group recently presented its first draft of the bylaws for a Factom Protocol non-profit corporation to be based in Wyoming. The purpose of the non-profit would be limited in scope with its primary directive to hold certain assets for the community.

Our next update will be in two weeks, see you then.