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An Introduction to Mina Protocol: Understanding the Basics

2023-06-15 01:24:15

Mina Protocol is a small, lightweight blockchain that prioritizes security, privacy, and decentralization. It utilizes zero-knowledge proofs to achieve its compact size and provides a promising solution for building a more decentralized and private internet.

In this article, we will discuss what Mina protocol is, how it works, what its native token MINA is, we will also discuss the history of MINA, the features of Mina Protocol and the value of MINA tokens. We will end the article by providing concise guidance on how to buy MINA.

What Is Mina Protocol and How Does It Work?

Mina is a protocol at the foundational layer of blockchain technology that aims to fulfill the fundamental promise of blockchain - to achieve true decentralization, security, and scalability.

Blockchains aim to be accountable to users and enable trustless transactions through a decentralized structure. However, legacy blockchains like Bitcoin and Ethereum require significant computing power to verify transactions, leading to intermediaries and a shift in power dynamics. This results in decreased decentralization and increased vulnerability to censorship.

What is Mina Protocol

Mina proposes a unique approach by utilizing a consistent-sized cryptographic proof as a substitute for the blockchain. This approach drastically reduces the data required for download by users. Instead of verifying the entire chain from inception, participants can validate the network and transactions using recursive zero-knowledge proofs (zk-SNARKs). This approach allows nodes to store only the small proof, instead of the entire chain. Mina remains accessible and scalable, with the ability to accumulate years of transaction data.

The Mina Protocol uses zk-SNARKs to capture the entire state of the blockchain as a lightweight snapshot, which is comparable to compressing a large file into a smaller zip file. This approach makes it easier and faster to distribute the snapshot, despite its infinite data. The next block captures a snapshot of itself with the prior snapshot as the background, and this process repeats. Notably, the snapshot always remains the same size, even though it can contain proof of an infinite amount of data.

What Makes Mina Protocol Unique?

Mina Protocol is unique for several reasons: it is a zero-knowledge blockchain, Mina Protocol uses cryptography to prove a certain piece of data is true without revealing the data itself, making it private and secure. Mina protocol is lightweight and accessible, with a small 22kb blockchain size; it is scalable and can handle millions of transactions per second. Mina protocol is secure, utilizing proof-of-stake consensus, recursive zero-knowledge proofs, and a decentralized network of validators. These features make Mina Protocol well-suited for various applications, from payments to DeFi to decentralized applications.

What Is a MINA Coin?

The Mina coin is the native cryptocurrency of the Mina Protocol. Mina coins are used to pay transaction fees, secure the network, incentivize participation, and interact with dApps built on the Mina Protocol.

The Mina coin has a number of utilities, including:

  1. Payments: Make payments for goods and services on the Mina Protocol.
  2. Transaction fees: Pay transaction fees and enhance network security and decentralization.
  3. Security: Secure the Mina network through staking, where coin holders lock their coins to participate in the consensus mechanism, ensuring network reliability and security.
  4. Decentralized applications: Interact with decentralized applications built on the Mina Protocol.
  5. Incentivization: Incentivize participants to contribute to the Mina network.

Overall, the Mina coin is a fundamental part of the Mina Protocol, providing incentives and mechanisms to support a decentralized and efficient blockchain network.

MINA Tokenomics

MINA is an inflationary currency with no supply cap, and tokenholders can stake or delegate to receive their proportional fraction of the inflation without a lockup or bonding requirements. 

The Initial Distribution of MINA tokens at launch was 1 billion, excluding future block rewards, subject to various lockup schedules. During the first year of mainnet, accounts with lock-ups received block rewards with annual inflation of 12%, decreasing over time to reach 7% at steady-state. 

Additionally, during the first 15 months of mainnet, unlocked accounts received double the block rewards of locked accounts to incentivize new participants to the network and encourage loyalty to the ecosystem.

Mina Token Distribution

MINA Statistics 

MINA Statistics

*Data source: The table above is real-time data from Coinmarketcap as of June 6, 2023.

History of Mina Protocol

Mina Protocol was founded in 2017 by Evan Shapiro and Izaak Meckler, who met while working at the Ethereum Foundation and shared an interest in blockchain's potential for a secure and democratic internet. 

Shapiro and Meckler aimed to develop a small, lightweight, and user-friendly blockchain, as they believed existing blockchains were too complex for the average person. The result was Mina Protocol, which is a blockchain that weighs only 22 kilobytes. This makes it the smallest blockchain in the world. 

The experienced team at Mina Protocol is dedicated to creating a secure, private, and accessible blockchain for everyone.

Features of Mina Protocol

Mina Protocol's unique features make it a promising solution for a more decentralized, efficient, and private internet. Below are some of the key features that make Mina Protocol stand out:

  1. Small Size: Mina Protocol's blockchain is only 22 kilobytes in size, making it the smallest blockchain in the world. This is possible because Mina Protocol uses ZKPs to verify transactions.
  2. Security: Highly secure due to the use of ZKPs to verify transactions, which are difficult to forge cryptographic proofs.
  3. Scalability: A scalable blockchain because it can process more transactions without network congestion. 
  4. Privacy: A private blockchain that uses ZKPs to validate transactions, enabling users to verify their knowledge without exposing the information.
  5. Decentralization: A decentralized blockchain secured by a network of validators who are incentivized for their contribution, not controlled by any single entity.

MINA Coin Value

MINA's current price is $0.51 (as of June 6, 2023), influenced by factors such as the utility and demand for MINA coins, the limited supply of MINA coins, and its unique technology, built on recursive zero-knowledge proofs. As a relatively new cryptocurrency, the price of MINA is volatile, but it has the potential for growth through increased adoption in DeFi, scalability improvements, and rising demand for privacy.

How to Buy MINA Coins?

CoinEx is a global cryptocurrency exchange, trusted by 5+ millions of users worldwide with 100% reserve. With its 700+ tokens supported, including MINA, users can now trade easily and seamlessly. To purchase MINA on CoinEx, follow the steps below.

  1. Register or Log In: To access CoinEx's services, register for an account by clicking "Register". Existing users can log in.
  2. Deposit Fiat or Crypto: Fund your CoinEx account by depositing through a range of options such as credit cards, etc. You can also deposit other supported cryptocurrencies that can be traded with MINA tokens. 
  3. Exchange Paired Tokens for MINA: Deposit funds into your CoinEx account, then go to the trading page and select the appropriate MINA trading pair that matches your deposit. For example, choose "MINA/BTC" if you deposited BTC.
  4. Buy/Trade MINA Tokens: Purchase MINA tokens by specifying the desired amount and exchanging the paired token for MINA after selecting the correct trading pair.
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