TON is a blockchain fully decentralized platform designed by Telegram to be used by billions of users. It features blazing-fast transactions, minimal fees, easy-to-use apps, and is environmentally friendly.

Symbol
TON
Logo
TON Logo
Algorithm
-
Consent
PoS/PoW

UNot one of the projects that has caused the most debate in the world cripto es The Open Network (TON). This project, which was originally known as Telegram Open Network, is a blockchain and cryptocurrency designed by the Durov brothers (creators of Telegram).

The idea of ​​the project was to revolutionize and massify crypto payment systems, by integrating a powerful crypto payment system into its world-famous application, Telegram. In this way, more than 500 million people could make use of TON, thus beginning a new chapter in the world of cryptocurrencies, .

All this, of course, accompanied by major advances in blockchain technology, such as shardingchains, high-speed, Proof of Stake, or native payment integration to different applications.

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A Little History

The history of TON begins in 2018, when TechCrunch, one of the most important technology websites, published rumors that Telegram could integrate crypto payments into its instant messaging app. At that time, both the lite paper (a 23-page document) and the white paper of the project (a 132-page document completely technical) were shown. Thus Telegram Open Network and its cryptocurrency, “GRAM” were born.

The project would become a reality thanks to an ICOwith which they hoped to raise $500 million and begin the development of TON. From that money would come everything needed to pay for the adaptation of the Telegram infrastructure and the development of the blockchain and its crypto, along with everything needed to launch the project worldwide. Also, by 2021 the plan was for TON to be under the control of The Open Foundation and to separate the operation of Telegram and TON to expand its reach and decentralize its operation.

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The Problems Begin

However, the ICO for the project began to generate the first problems. Scams began to appear on Twitter, and this led Pavel Durov himself to invite people to denounce all these false accounts and to announce that there would soon be an official means to participate in the ICO.

By April 2018, private purchases began, the most notable being the purchase of a Chinese company, for a total of $2.000 billion in Gram tokens. Everything seemed to be heading for a total success for TON.

The public sale would then start, which was attempted under U.S. jurisdiction and SEC regulations. The Gram Purchase Agreement was structured as a future contract, allowing investors to receive tokens once TON is launched. As futures were only sold to accredited investors, the offering was exempt from registration as securities under Regulation D of the Securities Act of 1933, on the basis that once TON was operational, the Grams would have utility and would not be considered securities. All this, along with the two Forms D that Telegram filed and the silence of the SEC, gave the green light to Telegram's ICO sale.

SEC vs Telegram

However, the SEC began to mobilize and on October 11, 2019, intervened asking Telegram to temporarily restrict the distribution of Gram tokens. The agency argued that the initial purchasers of Gram would be acting as underwriters, and the resale of Gram, once distributed, would be an unregistered distribution of securities.

This led to one of the longest crypto cases seen so far, one that Telegram would lose. Thus, on May 12, 2020, after a tough court fight, Pavel Durov announced the end of Telegram's active participation with the TON blockchain. This would start the refund process that extended until 2021.

The Resurgence of TON

However, Pavel Durov, foreseeing all this, developed TON as an open-source software project, and made its code publicly available on GitHub. This meant that although Telegram would not be able to launch TON it wished, the community could develop the idea and bring it to fruition.

And that is precisely what happened. On May 7, 2020, the FreeTON project was launched, which used the available TON technology developed so far (there were already testnet networks deployed). But the biggest project to follow in TON’s footsteps has been TONCOIN, under the Ton.org web domain, This project has been the one that has developed TON technology the most and has become the benchmark for what Pavel Durov dreamed of.

The Technology behind TON

TON is committed to building not only a payment system, but a complete infrastructure capable of decentralizing different services. To achieve all this, TON bases its development on the following technologies:

Proof of Stake and Sharding for High Scalability

TON consists of a three-layer network. In the first level we have the masterchain, which works thanks to a powerful Proof-of-Stake (PoS) algorithm that gives it great speed, scalability and security. This master chain is the main chain of the TON network and is currently in operation. In other words, every time an operation is performed in TON, it is performed on the master chain.

In the second level we find the workchains, which are secondary chains that connect to the masterchain and that can contain up to XNUMX^XNUMX different connected chains. Each of these secondary chainscan have their own set of consensus rules, including different formats of account addresses and transactions, virtual machines for smart contracts and basic cryptocurrencies, etc. All this while remaining compatible with the masterchain, being able to interact with it and with each other seamlessly.

Finally, we have the third level, which are the shardchains. Shardchains are part of the workchains and their role is to provide them with a scalability boost, splitting the work and parallelizing it. In this way, TON’s scalability soars to levels far higher than what we would currently find in chains such as Polkadot or Solana. All this is possible thanks to a bottom-up approach that TON uses for its shardchains, giving rise to what they call the Infinite Sharding Paradigm.

All this technology is known as TON, being one of the main advances that the project presents to the crypto world, directly rivaling projects like Ethereum, Polkadot or Cosmos.

The entire system works in a completely decentralized way (through a P2P protocol), making it resistant to censorship and to the different attacks that the network could suffer.

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Self-Healing, a Network Without Hard Forks

Another major breakthrough of the TON blockchain was its self-healing or self-recovery mechanism. Due to sharding, the network updates (masterchain) may conflict with the subnetworks (workchains or shardchains). In that case, the self-healing mechanism is responsible for maintaining the proper functioning of the TON network, even allowing the rewriting the blocks to solve the problem.

Rewriting in no case means discarding the previous block, since the data of that block will be used and will be linked to the new block, allowing the review of its information at all times. In this way, TON protects itself against events that jeopardize the operation of its blockchain, and at the same time, avoids the problems that can originate form hard forks within its structure.

Fast Data Routing

One of the biggest problems that blockchain networks have to face is the growth of their P2P, networks and the consequent difficulty of sending network information to all its parts according to the already accepted consensus rules.

Understanding this problem is very simple: just imagine a courier who has to get a message to 100 people around the world, quickly and safely. Creating a plan to do this is relatively straightforward. However, the problem increases exponentially when we add thousands of couriers and hundreds of millions of destinations into the equation. Then, the logistics and efficiency problem becomes so complex that solving it is not easy at all.

This is precisely the problem that TON had. Mobilizing all this information efficiently in the masterchain and its workchains (up to a maximum of XNUMX^XNUMX chains) was very complex. Therefore, the blockchain devised a solution to the problem known as Instant Hypercube Routing (IHR), a PXNUMXP communication protocol that allowed all TON nodes to share information about their blocks and operations quickly and efficiently. In this way, the entire network maintains the information synchronization necessary for its proper functioning, which is necessary considering that the TON’s PoS protocol and its sharding system expect to generate a block every five seconds in the network.

In fact, this problem solved by TON is one of the problems that most afflicts Ethereum 2.0 and its development of shardchains, as well as Polkadot, which had similar problems, although they have already been solved.

Decentralized, Private and Secure Storage

Another technology that TON integrates into its network is known as TON Storage. TON Storage is a PXNUMXP data storage network integrated to the nodes of the TON network. That is, each TON node is capable of deploying a decentralized data storage point in the network.

The idea of ​​TON Storage is that this network is capable of functioning as a kind of large hard drive, where you can store data necessary for the operation of dApps or other blockchain applications or not, that have access to said network. TON Storage would be based on a DHT system (similar to the one used in Bitcoin) to share information between nodes and allow decentralized access to data at all times.

This system is like the one we see in networks such as IPFS, Filecoin, or Sia, and is highly integrated with TON and the rest of the functions of this blockchain.

Privacy and Anonymity by Default

One of the great advances of TON has been its commitment to maintain and protect the privacy and anonymity of its users. For example, a common problem with Proof-of-Stake networks is that all their stakers must make public an address where the total amount of coins they have in stake can be seen publicly , a situation that exposes data that should not be public.

To avoid this situation and others, TON has created what is known as TON Proxy, a feature of the TON network that allows its users to exchange information on the network anonymously. To do this, TON has used a network protocol derived from the IXNUMXP privacy protocol (a protocol that competes with Tor and has superior technical capabilities). The idea is that this system allows sending and receiving data on the TON network anonymously and zeroconf (without the need for configuration) facilitating the privacy and anonymity of people when using TON.

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DNS and In-Network Services

Another important point in the operation of TON is its DNS scheme and its decentralized services. Decentralized DNS allows anyone to have a domain name in the network that is associated with a payment address or a service in question. An example of the usability of this type of feature can be seen in services such as Ethereum Name Services (ENS) where you can register domain names for decentralized websites or cryptocurrency payment addresses for the Ethereum network or other compatible ones.

Smart Contracts in TON

TON also offers capabilities of smart contracts advanced, however, at this point there is much work to be done. For example, TON still lacks standard specifications for deploying specialized contracts such as NFT (although there is already a release candidate for this). The launch of specialized tokens is limited to workchains (since each workchain can have a token that identifies it), so token standards such as the ERC-20, they possibly don't exist (they can be created, but again there is no defined standard yet).

All this creates a somewhat peculiar situation as the TON Virtual Machine (or TVM) offers unique features for powerful smart contracts but the lack of standards development makes it difficult to issue them.

This curious situation is explained by the fact that with the announcement of Telegram's separation from the project, many developers abandoned it. However, the community that has since taken the reins of the project is recovering a lot of potential and development capacity, which can be seen in the overall progress of the project so far.

In fact, one of the community's current priorities is to improve the capacity to develop and deploy smart contracts on the network, so in the medium term we will surely see many improvements in this regard.

This situation has become evident with the existence of dApps services that are vital within TON, such as bridges or the different platforms NFT that have been created on the network taking advantage of this capability.

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TON, the blockchain token

Toncoin (formerly known as Gram) is the native token of the TON network. Some of its functions are:

  1. Gas payments for payment transactions and interaction with smart contracts.
  2. The ability to perform native cross-chain operations on the network. Remember that TON is the masterchain token and that each workchain has its own token that is interoperable with TON, so these operations are enabled natively.
  3. The token is also used to pay for access to network resources. For example, to access the decentralized storage system (TON Storage), or the DNS service (TON DNS), or the services deployed in the TON Services layer. In all these cases, Toncoin is the currency used to pay.
  4. Deployment of new staking nodes for the masterchain or for workchains and shardchains.
  5. It is also used for decentralized protocol governance.

Toncoin has a maximum issuance of XNUMX billion tokens, and to put them into circulation, a curious system must be used: mining using Proof of Work. The reason for this system is that initially, the XNUMX billion tokens were all issued and put into a smart contract called “Giver”, which releases XNUMX TON daily as rewards to miners.

This smart contract is designed to measure the computational work of the miners and reward them. The process is designed for miners to generate TON that can circulate on the blockchain (otherwise they will remain blocked). Once successfully mined, the miner can take those tokens and use them on the network to either pay, use smart contracts or create validation nodes for the PoS system. The mining protocol used for TON is specially designed to take advantage of the CPUs and GPUs, being resistant to ASICs.

The Future of TON

TON is undoubtedly a great project with unique capabilities that place it at the level of large projects such as Ethereum, Polkadot or Cardano. Its development at the beginning was meteoric, but the problems that Telegram had with the SEC certainly turned everything upside down. Despite this, the community has been recovering this project little by little until putting it back in a relevant position.

The development of this project continues its path and has shown us that it is a living project, which plans to complete the development of its main tools this 2022. Thanks to the willingness of its developers and its growing community, it is very likely that they will be able to complete this goal. If they do, this will become the first blockchain project to, despite having practically fallen into oblivion, resurface and become one of the most important in the community.

Links of interest

Official Website!

TON

Official Website!

Go to the official website

Whitepaper

TON

Whitepaper

Go to white paper

Official Twitter

TON

Official GitHub

TON

Official GitHub

Go to the GitHub

Reddit thread

TON

Block Explorer

TON

Block Explorer

Go to block explorer