The Ignis blockchain is the first child chain of the Ardor blockchain. The parent-child structure of Ardor was conceived as a means of reducing blockchain bloat, introducing multiple tokens to the same blockchain, and enabling interconnected chains that are ready-to-use.
Therefore, Ignis serves both as a proof-of-concept of the features and functionality of the Ardor blockchain, and as a project with its own set of features and functionality.
This guide will serve as a comprehensive explainer of the Ignis blockchain, covering the following topics:
- History and Purpose of Ignis
- Features of Ignis
- Team and Roadmap
- IGNIS Token (Where to Buy, How to Store)
History and Purpose of Ignis
To explain Ignis, it’s necessary to understand how it came into being. The project has roots dating back to 2013, in another blockchain project called Nxt.
Nxt - The Roots of Ignis
Nxt launched back in 2013, as one of the first “Blockchain 2.0” projects, putting the technology to work beyond the initial cryptocurrency use case. Nxt introduced several decentralized features including an asset exchange, digital goods marketplace, encrypted messaging, and a voting platform.
Although it was a cutting-edge platform at the time of launch, Nxt encountered some of the same challenges of its successors. These include scalability, blockchain bloating, and customization challenges. Furthermore, like Ethereum, Nxt requires that users own the native token to pay transaction fees.
However, even despite these challenges, Nxt is still in operation today.
Ardor - A New Blockchain Architecture
As a means of overcoming the aforementioned challenges, the operators of Nxt decided to develop a new solution. In 2016, they started building Ardor, which launched in early 2018. Ardor is based on the codebase of Nxt and as such, offers all the same features. However, the critical difference lies in the overall architecture.
Ardor uses a parent-and-child structure, where the main parent chain avoids bloat and speeds up throughput by only taking on the core tasks of transaction processing and security. Functionality such as asset exchanges or voting protocols are implemented on child chains, linked to the parent chain.
Ardor also uses a system called bundling to allow child chain operators to pay transaction fees in the token of their chain. A bundler is effectively a node that accepts transaction payments in the token of the child chain and then pays for the transaction to be processed on the main chain in ARDR tokens.
Ignis - The First of the Ardor Child Chains
Finally, Ignis emerged as the first, and main, child chain of Ardor. Ignis inherits all the same features and functionality as Nxt, but as it’s based on Ardor, it overcomes the critical challenges encountered by Nxt.
While it’s possible for anyone to set up a child chain on Ardor using the features they need, Ignis serves as a proof-of-concept for Ardor. At the same time, while Ardor child chains can be set up with permissions or restricted features, Ignis is permissionless. Anyone can use it to experiment and build public applications.
The Ignis ICO launched in 2017, raising $15M.
Features of Ignis
Currently, Ignis offers a comprehensive host of featuresthat can also be made available on any child chain, including coin exchange, voting system, a market place, data cloud, and many more.
Furthermore, some features take place exclusively using Ignis, but Ignis facilitates those features across other child chains. For example, Ignis facilitates setting account properties and account controls across all child chains.
Account controls enable child chain operators to set mandatory approval procedures using a multi-signature feature. Similar restrictions can be applied to asset transactions.
This feature makes Ardor particularly suitable for enterprise adoption, as enterprises typically require segregation of duty for financial and other sensitive transactions.
Ignis also offers users access to lightweight smart contracts, which offer an additional layer of automation over and above the Ardor child chain APIs. Lightweight smart contracts don’t require validation by every single node, and because they are stateless, they present less risk to the network if a contract becomes broken or is configured to be malicious. Any user wanting to configure lightweight smart contracts for interacting with their child chain performs the configuration using Ignis.
Company and Team
Nxt, Ardor, and Ignis are all powered by Jelurida. Jelurida was formed in the Netherlands in 2016 has been since operating the Nxt alongside developing Ardor and Ignis.
Since its formation, the company has expanded operations over three continents.
Jelurida has three co-founders. Lior Yaffe is a Director and Core Developer with over 20 years experience in enterprise IT solutions. Kristina Kalcheva, Director and Legal Expert, holds a Masters in Law from the University of Sofia. Finally, Petko Petkov is a Core Developer bringing experience in fintech.
Jelurida’s current business model is based on several revenue streams. The company offers Consensus-as-a-service, working with clients on setting up their own child chains on the Ardor network.
It also offers blockchain consulting and training services. For example, Jelurida has been working with German household brands company Henkel on its 2020 digitization strategy.
Jelurida is currently making good on its roadmap deliverables, having successfully launched new developments, including lightweight smart contracts and the child chain control infrastructure in 2019.
Still to come are developments including transaction pruning to further overcome blockchain bloat and hardware wallet integration. There are also several areas under research, such as subnets, Java modules, and secure voting.
There are one billion IGNIS tokens in existence. Of these, 440 million (44%) were sold at ICO. 500 million (50%) were airdropped to Nxt holders at the time of the Ardor Genesis block, and the remaining 60 million (6%) were retained by Jelurida.
The IGNIS token is the token of the Ignis child chain, used to pay transaction fees. It’s available for purchase on the Ardor decentralized exchange platform. However, it’s also available via many other exchanges, including Bittrex, ChangeNow, Changelly, and Upbit.
There is a dedicated IGNIS wallet, developed by Freewallet, for storing IGNIS tokens. The IGNIS wallet is available on Android, Windows, MacOS, or Linux-based operating systems.
Ardor and Ignis solve many of the less glamorous, infrastructure-based challenges of blockchain with a multi-functional, enterprise-grade platform. Perhaps because these problems are infrastructure-based, the achievements don’t necessarily get the credit they deserve.
However, by implementing the parent-child architecture and combining it with Consensus-as-a-service, Ardor makes it easier than ever before for any enterprise to get started with blockchain. Enterprises considering blockchain implementations often face insurmountable barriers to entry, involving a steep learning curve and high costs with no guarantee of a return on investment.
By removing those barriers, Ardor and Ignis enable enterprises to take a more experimental and innovative approach in using blockchain to solve business problems.