On 19th January, ShinChan had a live AMA session with Jan Knežević, CEO of Paralink. For those who missed the event, here’s the recap.
Jan Knežević: Hi everyone! Paralink network is a cross-chain data ingress engine which we decided to build in q2 of 2020 after looking at other oracle solutions and seeing that the technology stack they are built on isn’t sufficient for providing a stable and resilient service. That is why we decided to build on Polkadot to achieve higher throughput and add sufficiently expressive ETL systems and an advanced querying language which we felt were lacking in the current solutions.
Our developers have worked and contributed in multiple ecosystems including Steem and EOS, while we have people who have been in operational roles at Parity, Consensys, Tendermint, and Bitfury. We are mostly based in Europe, but we have a marketing division in the US as well as Asia.
Elson: Thanks for the introduction.
Compare with projects like LINK, TLR, and DIA, what the main difference for Paralink among them?
Jan Knežević: We are building on Polkadot which gives us incomparably higher throughput than the solutions on ethereum. We also get cross-ecosystem interoperability through the xcmp protocol because of that. One of the biggest additions to other solutions is also a sufficiently expressive ETL system and a querying language that offers advanced queries as stated earlier. Here is a comparison table so you can see the advantages that we have over the current competitors.
Elson: Thank You! Do you have any news/ann you would like to share with our community before we start the live AMA session?
Jan Knežević: We have open-sourced our node last week, so if there is interest in this community we invite you to contribute as we are also onboarding the developers that will provide good code.
We are finalizing integration with plasm this week and will announce it afterward and we are also working hard to launch testnet by the end of January.
Feel free to check our announcements on our blog.
Q1: Paralink created a language called PQL. Can you tell us about the objectives of PQL? How is it related to Paralink Nodes and IPFS?
Paralink data requests can be made via PQL definitions, which are JSON based descriptions of ETL (Extract, Transform & Load) jobs. PQL queries are done via SQL like interface which generalizes over common data structures (JSON, XML, SQL) and includes basic post-processing utilities such as math functions and typecasting.
IPFS is used to immutably store the job definition and provide an addressable content hash. The hash is only 32 bytes long, which is significantly shorter than the job definition itself, making it suitable for request signaling on resource-constrained chains such as Ethereum.
Paralink Query Language | Paralink Network Documentation
Paralink data requests can be made via PQL definitions, which are JSON based descriptions of ETL (Extract, Transform &…
Q2: If Paralink is powered by PolkaDot, why launch native tokens on ERC20? just to make it easier to market by listing it on uniswap? really have other reasons?
First, the tokens will be launched on ERC-20 as the ecosystem is much more advanced already. After we obtain a parachain slot we will have a polkadot native token too and centralized exchanges will act as intermediaries between the chains- similar as with USDT which is on 9 different chains and most users don't even know that as the transition is done seamlessly. We cannot list on a centralized exchange with polkadot native token as there is no standard for such tokens yet and we will have to wait for the standard to get implemented.
Q3: Cooperation is the key to making things easier and more successful for a project. Who is Paralink currently cooperating with? What benefits does Paralink feel of this partnership for you and your partner?
Paralink looks to cooperate with all projects. The feasibility constraint at the moment is development time as we are building integrations with other projects ourselves as we don’t have the marketing exposure to attract projects to build themselves yet. So the first one we are building is plasm and after that, we are focusing on Moonbeam and Darwinia, and others. We are focusing on the project we believe will obtain a slot in the first parachain auction which will help us get marketing exposure. We are open to integration with projects on Polkadot Ethereum and other blockchains.
Q4: Will Paralink obtain a parachain on Polkadot? Or do you only plan to use Kusama for now?
We plan to obtain a parachain slot on Polkadot but we believe the first auction will be too expensive for us as we foresee the price in the first auction to be from 10–25 mio$. That is why we have identified projects that we believe have a high chance of obtaining a slot and are working on integration with them. In the meantime, we will launch in Kusama.
Q5: Why did you choose IDO at Polkastarter? What are the advantages of Polkastarter in your opinion?
We haven’t finalized our decision on the public sale provider yet. We are having discussions with several different providers atm.
Q6: What is the plan for increasing the data security of Paralink Network platform? Is there any partnership on the table?
Paralink does not hold users' funds, so most DeFi attack surfaces don’t apply directly. The on-chain aggregation and validation ensure the high integrity of the data for DeFi applications that do rely on Paralink oracles.
To satisfy all kinds of applications, Paralink offers 3 security models with different costs, convenience, and security characteristics.
Paralink Nodes can be used as a multi-chain oracle from any 3rd party data source by any developer.
Simple Oracle can be upgraded by the virtue of cryptographically signed PQL results with ECDSA private keys from reputable data providers.
For applications that require the highest level of security, without having to rely on a single source of truth.
For the Pros and cons of each option check here: https://docs.paralink.network/whitepaper/security.html
Q7: Everything starts with education, and it’s true with blockchain technology too. What steps is Paralink Protocol taking towards educating it community and investors on the benefits of Paralink Protocol technology and blockchain as a whole?
We agree and are working hard to have excellent documentation. We are trying to build the most generic oracle platform out there as we feel this is the way to onboard developers and users. We are going to create a UI for PQL that will make it super easy to use, as we feel that the current solutions implementations are too hard which makes them unusable in practice
Developer guide: https://docs.paralink.network/developer-guide/getting-started.html
Q8: Is there anywhere I could play with these PQL queries? Some testnet or active development community for example?
Testnet is coming by the end of January. If you are interested in contributing DM me and I will connect you with our developers. We are already receiving pull requests and have some developers that are contributing on a trial period.
Q9: to create the Paralink Network financial ecosystem, will there be a buyback or burning of a token supply?
We haven’t planned any buybacks or burning events, but we will incentivize the ecosystem with validator rewards during the first 2 years, to get the ecosystem running.
Q9: How reliable and verified are the oracle solution offered by Paralink? How do you prevent data falsification?
As stated earlier to satisfy all kinds of applications, Paralink offers 3 security models with different costs, convenience, and security characteristics. The most secure one is On-Chain Consensus with relayer quorums. Relayer quorums are self-organizing groups of Paralink Node operators, whose job is to service the data requests. Relayer quorums earn fees for providing the service (see Token) and can be penalized — have their revenue and or stake slashed — via the Reputation system. To service a callback to a data request, min_treshold relayers have to agree on the result. The agreement is defined by the variance threshold. The result is then aggregated on-chain using the mean for continuous, and mode for discrete values.
Q10: There are many projects available in the market that even function very similarly to #paralink So can you say what are the main competitive advantages of #paralink? What outstanding benefits & extras do #paralink?
One of the biggest additions is the advanced queries and ETLs. We believe this will change the way people build dapps and think about data ingress into smart contracts. Also, having cross-chain capabilities while maintaining on-chain validation and aggregation gives us the flexibility to do the kind of processing never possible before.
Q11: A big problem today is the cost of developing on the blockchain. This is mainly due to the shortage of programmers who understand blockchain technologies, how could Paralink Network provide solutions to these types of problems?
We are in a unique position as we come from Slovenia which has a very big blockchain community compared to the size of the country because of Bitstamp and lots of early projects that created an ICO craze here in 2017. Luckily for us, a lot of those projects have run out of money so we have a big pool of blockchain developers to pick from at half the price of 2017 and with 3 years of blockchain experience:).
Q12: There are 3 core issues prevalent in crypto and blockchain: Security, Interoperability, and Scalability. How does PARALINK plan to overcome these issues?
These issues are the reasons we decided to build on Polkadot. We believe its technology stack is much more advanced than the current Ethereum capabilities. The only issue we have is the high price of the auction but we think it will lower significantly in later auctions when there will be more parachain slots available and the prestige of owning one will get lower.
Q13: What is the main job and mission of the Paralink Network?
Connect real-world data with blockchains most easily and cheaply possible while maintaining high throughput and resilience. Establish a bridge between traditional corporations and blockchains through the use of well-known languages and a good user UI to make implementation as easy as possible.