[Bimeng Research Institute] Investment Research Report-Mina Protocol (MINA)

The core concept of Mina is “simplified blockchain”. No matter how many transactions are processed in the entire Mina network, the block size is limited to 22 KB.

Coin World-[Bin Meng Research Institute] Investment Research Report-Mina Protocol (MINA)

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↯This investment research report is issued by the Bimeng  Research Institute. The content of the report is for reference only and should not be used as investment advice or investment basis.

↯The data mentioned in the  article are as of July 5, 2021, and may deviate from the actual situation at the time of publication. Please verify by yourself.

01 Brief description of the project

Mina Protocol is a lightweight public chain using zk-SNARK (zero-knowledge concise and no-interaction proof, a zero-knowledge proof scheme) technology. It is currently on the mainnet . Its main highlight is that its block size can be controlled at 22 KB , To ensure good accessibility, so that more users can participate in the verification of data on the chain. Mina has its own smart contract language Pickles to build decentralized applications (called Snapps) in the Mina network , but the Pickles language has not been developed yet, and zk-SNARK does not currently support general smart contracts, so Mina is currently There is no application ecology.

Official website  | https://minaprotocol.com

Twitter  | https://twitter.com/minaprotocol

Telegram  | https://t.me/minaprotocol

Documentation  | https://docs.minaprotocol.com/en

Blog  | https://minaprotocol.com/blog

Code  | https://github.com/MinaProtocol/mina

02 Project interpretation

2.1 Design concept

In the traditional blockchain system, all historical transaction data details need to be stored on the chain. When a node or user verifies the validity of a block, it needs to look for evidence in the historical transaction, which makes the entire blockchain The volume expands infinitely and accessibility becomes worse. Ordinary users need to pay huge costs to run full nodes. This will indirectly lead to a reduction in the number of full nodes and reduce the degree of decentralization of the blockchain.

The core concept of Mina is “concise blockchain”. No matter how many transactions are processed in the entire Mina network, the block size is limited to 22 KB, and the latest block will contain the latest state of the entire blockchain , Users only need a zk-SNARK proof to fully verify the current state of the blockchain within a few milliseconds.

The technical principle is that when the block is generated, the block content is compressed into a single SNARK proof through the zk-SNARK technology, that is, the current state of the entire block chain is compressed into the block (including the balance of all the addresses on the chain, etc.) ) , the user (node) only needs to verify the proof when verifying, and there is no need to trace the entire transaction history.

In addition, in the traditional block chain, because the block chain is continuously extended, more and more data stacking will make the volume of the entire block chain larger. In Mina, the situation is different. Although each block contains the state of the entire block chain, since the  SNARK proof can be combined recursively (using the combinability of the SNARK proof) , the block size can be constant. Simply put, the generation of each Mina block is like taking a snapshot of the entire Mina blockchain network, and when a new block is generated, the previous snapshot will be used as the background image of the next snapshot, which is equivalent to The old and new snapshots are merged, so that even if the snapshots continue to pile up into an image with infinite amount of information, its size will always remain the same.

2.2 Node role

During the operation of Mina, there are three roles:

  • Block producer: Process transactions on the chain and generate blocks to obtain transaction fee rewards.
  • Proof producer: Use zk-SNARK technology to compress blocks and generate SNARK proofs.
  • Verifier: Download and use zk-SNARK to verify the validity of the block.

The coordination process of the three is: after the transaction is generated on the chain, the block producer will package the transaction, and the proof producer will compress the related transaction and generate a SNARK proof. The block producer needs to purchase the proof from the proof producer and send the proof to be verified by the verifier. The verification process only takes a few milliseconds. After the verification is completed, the block producer can generate the block and broadcast it, and other nodes can update it simultaneously.

2.3 Consensus mechanism

In the issue of selecting a block producer (allocation of accounting rights) for each block , Mina relies on the Ouroboros Samasika consensus algorithm, which is an improved PoS (Proof of Stake ) algorithm that consists of a verifiable random function (VRF). ) To select the block producer for each round. Compared with other PoS algorithms, Ouroboros Samasika has the following characteristics:

  • There is no limit to the number of nodes participating in the consensus: some BFT (Byzantine Fault Tolerance) PoS algorithms (such as Tendermint) , due to the complexity of network communication, must limit the number of nodes, often a few hundred is the upper limit, and Mina’s Ouroboros Samasika There is no limit on the number of nodes.
  • Nodes can enter and exit dynamically: Most blockchains that use PoS algorithms require nodes to remain online and penalize those who drop. This will raise the threshold for node operation. Ouroboros Samasika allows nodes to enter and exit freely.
  • Attack resistance: PoS algorithms often face long-range attacks (creating pseudo-chain forks that are longer than the main chain) , and need to introduce “weak subjectivity” to determine the legitimacy of the chain. Ouroboros Samasika uses the “longest chain” Principles” to deal with forks.

2.4 Zero-knowledge proof

The zero-knowledge proof technology adopted by Mina is zk-SNARK, which is one of the mainstream zero-knowledge proof schemes. The advantage is that it is easier to encrypt transaction information and has efficient verification speed, but the disadvantage is that the proof of zk-SNARK relies on proof The initial trusted settings between the verifier and the verifier, that is, a set of public parameters. These parameters are programmed into the protocol and are one of the necessary factors to prove the validity of the transaction. Since these parameters are usually set by small groups, there will be potential centralization problems. At present, there is another scheme with a similar name, zk-STARK, which does not require initial credibility settings, but uses a collision-resistant hash function and relies on simple encryption technology to complete zero-knowledge proof.

2.5 Smart contract

Mina has the smart contract infrastructure Pickles, which contains two components: a core zk-SNARK and a developer toolkit (including various library functions and the Pickles induction proof system) . Based on Pickles, Snapps (based on the Mina chain ) can be built . Zero-knowledge proof-driven DApps) . Compared with DApps on Ethereum, Snapps is more efficient. Specifically, the business operation of DApps requires the participation and execution of every node on Ethereum, while Snapps on Mina only requires a certain node to execute business logic once. , The rest of the nodes only need to verify the correctness.

Since Snapps based zk-SNARK building, so the native can be achieved through a number of zero-knowledge proof protection of privacy and reach functional verifiability of such operations can be completed KYC certain applications without reveal the user’s identity, and not Under the premise of leaking the user’s credit score, prove that a user’s credit score reaches or exceeds a certain threshold to realize application scenarios such as deposit-free lease and mortgage-free loan.

It should be noted that the Pickles language has not yet been developed, and zk-SNARK does not currently support general-purpose smart contracts, so  Mina does not currently have an application ecosystem.

03 Economic Model

3.1 Basic information

Token name: MINA

Initial release: 1 billion MINA

Token usage: node pledge; decentralized governance; transaction fees

Token distribution (initial issuance) :

  • Community: 34.8%
  • Coinlist public offering: 7.5%
  • Mina Foundation: 6.0%
  • O(1) Labs Foundation: 7.5%
  • Investor: 20.5%
  • Core contributors: 23.6%
Coin World-[Bin Meng Research Institute] Investment Research Report-Mina Protocol (MINA)

MINA is an inflation token , and inflation tokens will be issued to token pledgers. Any holder of MINA tokens can be rewarded with inflationary MINA tokens by staking tokens to become nodes or entrusting tokens to other nodes (no risk of penalty or forfeiture) . The initial issuance of MINA tokens is 1 billion, and the inflation rate in the first year is 12%.

Coin World-[Bin Meng Research Institute] Investment Research Report-Mina Protocol (MINA)

3.2 Price information

Note: The information below comes from CoinGecko

Current Price: $ 1.41

Current market value in circulation: $237 million

Circulation market value ranking: # 168

Highest price in history: $ 9.09 (June 1, 2021)

Lowest price in history: $ 1.10 (2020/6/22)

CEX online: OKEx, Gate.io, Kraken, etc.

04Team  /Financing

4.1 Core Team

O(1) Labs is a blockchain software development company founded by Evan Shapiro and lzaak Meckier in 2017 and is headquartered in San Francisco, California.

Founder/CEO: Evan Shapiro

Master of Computer Science from Carnegie Mellon University. He used to conduct research on the HERB robot platform at the Carnegie Mellon University Robotics Laboratory and worked as a Mozillay software engineer.

CTO/Co-founder: Lzaak Meckler

Mathematician and computer scientist, PhD in cryptography from the University of California, Berkeley. Served as a software engineer in Jane Street hedge fund, and contributed code to many open source projects such as the Elm compiler.

4.2 Investment institutions

In March 2018, Mina development company O(1) Labs completed a $3.5 million seed round of financing. Participants include MetaStable, Polychain Capital, Electric Capital, Naval Ravikant, Elad Gil, Linda Xie, Fred Ehrsam, Kindred Ventures, and SciFi VC etc.

In April 2019, O(1) Labs completed a US$15 million Series A round of financing. Participants included Coinbase Ventures, Accomplice, Paradigm, and General Catalyst.

In October 2020, O(1) Labs completed a strategic round of investment of 10.9 million US dollars, led by Bixin Investment and Three Arrows Capital. Participating institutions also include SNZ, HashKey, Signum Capital, NGC Ventures, Fenbushi Capital, and IOSG Ventures Wait.

On April 13, 2020, MINA tokens were publicly offered on the Coinlist platform and raised $18.7 million.

Coin World-[Bin Meng Research Institute] Investment Research Report-Mina Protocol (MINA)

05 Project Analysis

The main advantage of Mina Protocol is light weight. Its 22 KB volume reduces the threshold of validator nodes. Anyone can use any smart device (such as PC, mobile phone, etc.) to run the node to maintain the safe and stable operation of the Mina chain. In theory, it can bring a very high degree of decentralization.

The core technology of Mina to achieve lightweight is zk-SNARK. Although the current adoption of zero-knowledge proof technology has become a trend in the blockchain industry, it is still in the early stage of development, and the technology is not mature. The computational difficulty and cost of zero-knowledge proof are Time and cost still cannot be ignored , and there are some hidden dangers in safety and stability that have not yet been discovered, so Mina, which is based on this technology, will also face these problems.

Mina has not yet built an application ecosystem and can only be used for simple payment purposes. On the one hand, Pickles has not been developed yet, on the other hand, it is limited by zk-SNARK not supporting general smart contracts. Mina has currently cooperated with the Ethereum Foundation to try to use Mina’s Pickles SNARK to provide corresponding solutions for privacy-related applications in the Ethereum ecosystem, that is, zero-knowledge proof calculations are performed on Mina and then on Ethereum Verification, taking into account the characteristics and advantages of the two chains.

In summary, Mina’s philosophy and vision have room for imagination, but it cannot give full play to its advantages under the current technological background. Mina has two development directions in the future: one is to achieve breakthroughs in zero-knowledge proof technology to realize the application ecology, and the other is to cooperate with other public chains to use Mina itself as a decentralized zero-knowledge proof computing component for other public chains. Provide support for the application ecosystem.

Posted by:CoinYuppie,Reprinted with attribution to:https://coinyuppie.com/bimeng-research-institute-investment-research-report-mina-protocol-mina/
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