The new index is the creation of the China Center for Information Industry Development that is part of the Minister of Industry and Information Technology in Beijing. The Center evaluates the technological capability, usefulness of the application, and innovativeness of each blockchain project. Blockchain is the system powering different cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin and is a shared database maintained by a network of computers that are linked on the Internet.
Ranking of different projects
Ethereum, with its currency called ether, won a score of 129.4 for number one ranking. It has become the foundation for many other coin offerings generating their own digital currencies which are sold to investors to generate income to finance projects.
Bitcoin the largest cryptocurrency by market cap, founded ten years ago, garnered only a score of 88 making it number 13 in the ranking. Many projects that are not well known filled the other top five places. Steem was second with 115.9,. Lisk third with 104.8. NEO was fourth with 103.0 and Komodo fifth with 101.5.
The index rates 28 blockchain projects along with their respective cryptocurrencies. It will be updated monthly. There are currently about 1,500 cryptocurrencies in all. According to CoinMarketCap their collective market capitalization is almost $380 billion.
Although in the second half of last year, the Chinese government began to crack down on illegal initial coin offerings (ICOs), it also expects public blockchains and decentralized applications to contribute significantly to the economy in the future.
China was the most active filer of blockchain patent applications last year according to data collated by Thomson Reuters’ Practical Law from the World Intellectual Property Organization.
Ethereum is an open-source public blockchain-based distributed computing platform and operating system. It features smart contract functionality. The currency generated by the platform is called Ether. Ether can be transferred between accounts. It is also used to compensate miners for computations performed.
Ethereum provides a decentralized Turing-complete virtual machine called the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) it can execute scripts using an international network of public nodes. This article explains Turing-completeness. This article explains ethereum scripting and the Virtual Machine in more detail.
Ethereum was originally proposed in late 2013 by Vitalik Buterin both a programmer and a cryptocurrency researcher. The system went live at the end of July 2015. Ethereum split into two blockchains in 2016 with the original blockchain continuing as Ethereum Classic (ETC) as contrasted with Ethereum (ETH). In 2017 the value of Ethereum soared by over 13,000 percent.
Ethereum’s block time is much quicker than that of bitcoin at 14 to 15 seconds compared to 10 minutes for bitcoin. Transaction fees are in general much lower for ether than bitcoin. In December 2017, the median transaction free for ether was just $0.33 while that for bitcoin was 23.
The price of ethereum just before closing on May 19th was about $695. Ethereum is the largest cryptocoin by market cap after bitcoin.