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58. CARDANO (Published: 12th Oct, 2017)
Cardano is a platform for smart contracts and thus decentralised applications, which directly competes with the existing Ethereum platform. It differentiates itself by providing solutions for the regulations, security, consumer privacy, governance, and long-term plannings. Cardano will implement the Ouroboros Proof of Stake Algorithm, which was developed by their own team. It will also run with 2 connected layers: one settlement layer for accounting and a control layer to run smart contracts and recognise identity for compliance purposes. The ADA token is the cryptocurrency of Cardano platform, which serves the same function as the Ether in Ethereum: a required token for the usage of the platform. 

The project has three separate stakeholders, including the Cardano FoundationIOHK, and EMURGO. Cardano Foundation will be responsible for the marketing and strategy development, IOHK will build the technology and blockchain, while EMURGO will foster the commercial applications built on the platform.The Foundation is led by Michael Parsons FCA, who is an experienced executive and consultant in the banking industry for 25 years. On the other other hand, the 2 founders of IOHK was in the Ethereum team but now their IOHK is working with Ethereum Classic. Meanwhile, EMURGO is a new company founded in 2017 in Japan which fosters companies to adopt blockchain technologies.

The settlement layer has been released by IOHK and hence users can already transfer and trade on the platform. For the control layer (computation layer), they aim to have a beta released by the first quarter of 2018. Once both layer are released, users will be able to build customised environments for decentralised applications. After the release of both layers, IOHK will develop the long-term scalability and capacities of the blockchain so that it can have a sustainable ecosystem to support itself in the long run. The IOHK will work at least until 2020 to ensure that the project is adequately maintained. 

Cardano was begun in 2015, with a decent team which has expertise in different areas. They seem to have a more advanced technology and solutions for the existing problems of Bitcoin and Ethereum. However, the effect of first mover advantage is huge, especially in the cryptocurrency world. Right now Ethereum is still the most popular platform for decentralised applications and there are also lots of competitors. Simply having a better technology or marketing plans will not be enough to survive in the market. The project needs to have some distinctive features to stand out from the crowd. Cardano was listed on Bittrex recently, but the price has decreased from 700 satoshi to 450 satoshi in a week. As mentioned above, the project right now does not have a distinctive feature to stand out, and hence we believe that it will continue to fall after the initial hype of listing. Therefore, it is not recommended to buy it for the time being.  

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