Hivefest: Telling Us Where Hive Is Going
Another Hivefest is behind us. For the second straight year, this was held in the virtual realm. Nevertheless, the information coming out is vital for those who are interested in the future of Hive.
The first thing that is noticed is how far we have come. Even though we have the legacy back to the genesis block, the chain truly only started about 20 months ago. In that time a lot was accomplished. As we saw, there is still much to do.
We all know of the success of @splinterlands. That is an example of what was a large theme. Regardless of the metric, the numbers are up across the board. We even saw a major jump in the price of HIVE, off its lows of around 10 cents.
Of course, the introduction of Punks on Hive was an exciting development, designed to coincide with Hivefest. In spite of some of the challenges, all 10,000 punks were sold out.
This success was not surprising. We all know how NFTs are the rage at the moment. Many are speculating that we are in a bubble with this, and they might be correct. Nevertheless, that does not diminish the future potential of this technology.
It is a key point. Throughout the event, we saw a number of presentations that discussed how they are going to be integrating that into their offerings. This means we are going to see the ability to store, move, and buy/sell NFTs in more of the applications.
Often we have to separate fact from fiction when it comes to hype. NFTs are going to be a powerful part of Web 3.0. This is a new ownership model which is going to expand. Presently, while in its infancy, we are dealing with fun, collectible items. However, when we project out, we see a much different future.
For example, how would you like to trade real estate on Ecency? That is what NFTs are going to enable.
For more than a year, we discussed how there is a gap in the Hive ecosystem. This stems from the fact there is no smart contract capability at the core layer.
Since that time, a number of projects cropped up to address this issue. There are a couple more intent on confronting this.
At present, we have Hive-Engine and Dlux.io that have smart contracts in use. They are still in the early stages but they do allow for token creation and other features such as the abovementioned NFTs.
Over the next year, it is likely we see platforms rolling out from both Blocktrades and the SpkNetwork that offer similar capabilities. These will vary in what the specifics are yet the goal is the same: to give Hive the features, via the second layer, that other blockchains are presently utilizing.
Here again, we have a technology that is still in its infancy. Ethereum introduced the concept when it came into existence. However, like most things, we did not see a great deal of utilization to start. The most heavily used feature early on was the ICO, which was novel but not too productive as it turns out. Yet, out of that, we are seeing more use cases being experimented with.
Filling In The Gaps
We could say that we saw a lot of "gap filling" being proposed. By this, we are referring to the idea that development is taking place to solve some situations presently hindering Hive.
One area that Splinterlands exposed was the challenge with onboarding users and getting them enough RCs to be active. This was addressed in the core developer presentation with Resource Credit delegation. It is a feature that will allow delegation similar to Hive Power but in RC.
There was also the middleware being developed by @arcange. The Hive Authentication Services is going to take blockchain log-in to an entirely new level. Any game, application, or website will be able to use the service. Users will then be able to log in without having to provide their keys to anyone. It ties into Keychain and verifies through that.
This could really help to leverage Hive's account management system, which is decentralized on the base layer.
Another "gap filler" is the Hive Application Framework (HAF). It appears this is very close to release which is going to take development on Hive to another level. The challenge within the industry is the fact that application developers also need to be knowledgeable in blockchain. This, naturally, reduces the number of people who can code.
HAF opens Hive development up to the entire development world. Anyone who can code and works with databases can utilize HAF. Basically it allows the developers to focus upon their application while the blockchain team handles what is fed into the HAF. Any changes at the blockchain level will not affect the applications (negatively) since the HAF will be updated with each blockchain change.
This kind of stuff is not exciting to the majority of non-programmers. However, having the proper infrastructure in place is vital. Security, ease of development, and optimization are not toe curling stuff yet are essential for expansion going forward.
We can sum up the focus of the event as such: growth.
All the projects appear intent on growing and expanding. Even Splinterlands, in spite of its remarkable success, is looking to add a great deal more in the future.
With so many projects underway, we can see how this expansion is going to put pressure on all aspects of Hive. Fortunately, there are many people in place who are working to ensure we can handle it.
The scalability of the blockchain has not been tested after a year of optimization. Thus, we know there are much higher levels that it can handle. Growing popularity is also going to create a need for more Resource Credits, which come from the amount of Hive Power.
It often takes a long time to become an overnight sensation. Many watch as other projects within the cryptocurrency world are thrust into the limelight, resulting in enormous price appreciation. This is further compounded by the fact the crypto media writes endless articles about it.
Nevertheless, as any business person will tell you, sometimes the best path is the slow and steady. It is not sexy or glamorous, yet it is effective. There are many example of technology companies that spent years not really going anywhere, at least that is how it looked from the outside. Yet, if we look beneath the surface, a lot was taking place.
That is how it seems with Hive. We saw, through a couple days of presentations, that a lot is being done. Many are involved in different aspects of this ecosystem, all putting in the hours. We are seeing the results pop up in a few different areas, green sprouts if you will. That said, there is a lot more to come.
One of the values of a Hivefest is that it provides a "line in the sand" for us to look back over the last 12 months. It is a little more than a month before the end of the calendar year which puts people in the same mindset.
Since the last Hivefest, a great deal was accomplished. It is vital to keep in mind that projects of this nature often more than a year in the making. Thus, we have things that were started in early 2021 which will not fully roll out until late next year. It is just the nature of development.
In conclusion, there is a lot to be excited about with Hive. While we are not the biggest ecosystem out there, we see the dedication and commitment that many have. This is going to translate into success down the road.
And for all those who are price watchers, between the need for RCs and the SIP from SpkNetwork, we are going to see the demand for HIVE growing.
It is safe to say that we will be much further down the road when Hivefest rolls around again next year.
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