Flare Network: Sparking life into XRP with smart contract capabilities
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What a month it has been. With bitcoin reaching levels near it’s all time high, alt coins followed in it’s path with a huge rally. XRP made a big move going up over 40% in a single day and even though it has seen a pullback in recent hours (at the time of posting), it still shows bullish trends. This is amazing timing since XRPs upswing is in part due to greater community recognition of the upcoming Flare network airdrop of its native Spark token that we mentioned a couple weeks ago on the “Staking Solana” YouTube video. Flare is being called a ‘utility fork’ as its stated purpose is not to take users away from XRP, but to bring value back to the XRP ledger by allowing seamless and trustless integration into smart contracts and applications on not only Flare’s network, but also on the Ethereum Virtual Machine.
XRP price chart 11/18–11/25
The ‘snapshot’ date of Flare’s Spark token airdrop is on December 12, 2020 and all holders of XRP will receive roughly 1:1 of Spark, though some action is required to take part. If all you’re interested in is finding out how to participate in that, skip down to the ‘Claiming your Spark’ section.
Otherwise, let’s dive into Flare.
Flare’s biggest difference from other protocols, and perhaps most importantly, is that the Flare network does not use proof of stake. They believe that current proof of stake models such as what Eth 2.0 seeks to transition to will have further scaling and security issues as usage continues to rise and more innovative applications become available. In other words, people won’t want to stake their Eth if they can get better returns collateralizing stablecoins or other competing financial instruments, leading to a decline in the security of the network. Flare solves this by not tying it’s native token to network security. They use what they call a Turing complete Federated Byzantine Agreement (FBA) network (Whitepaper here -https://flare.xyz/app/uploads/2019/11/FCP.pdf).
Flare allows for the creation of “F-assets” such as FXRP to interact with the ecosystem through a network of ‘agents’. Using XRP as an example, Agents provide a 2.5:1 ratio to the network of Spark’s value to XRP’s value to mint the FXRP. This minted FXRP is provided to holders who send their XRP to a series of dedicated ’Agent’ addresses on the XRP Ledger. The Agents receive a ‘creation’ fee and a ‘redemption’ fee when people convert their XRP to FXRP and back again. Agents are obligated to complete their duties in a specified amount of time. If they fail to do so, they will lose a portion of their provided Spark, and the user wishing to receive the XRP/FXRP is compensated the true value plus some to compensate for transaction costs.
This Agent system is one way Spark can be used to create a ‘Spark Dependent Application’. Spark tokens other main uses include governance of the network, and participation in the Flare Time Series Oracle (FTSO), Flare’s oracle system for bringing off chain information into the ecosystem as well as Spark holders’ main way of earning rewards. Holders who provide accurate data to the FTSO will earn rewards and holders who choose not to participate can delegate their Spark in a similar fashion to the way holders can delegate in proof of stake networks. See Flare’s detailed introductory post here: https://flare.ghost.io/theflarenetwork/.
This network will bring all the utility of Ethereum’s smart contracts to crypto’s third biggest coin by market cap. A whole host of new applications and decentralized finance devices are expected to be developed on Flare. Teams such as Flare Finance (no relation to the actual Flare Network) are already working to have products ready to go in the short term after Flare launches in December. You can read more about them here (https://flarefinance.medium.com/a-brief-introduction-to-flare-finance-225a66b6982a)
We all saw the enormous interest in Ethereum based DeFi through the summer of 2020 until it stalled out due to out of control gas fees and long processing times. With XRPs speed and near zero fees, Flare is positioning itself to give users a low cost DeFi experience.
Claiming your Spark
If you are an XRP holder, you are entitled to receive the Spark airdrop. The ‘snapshot’ date is December 12, 2020. Flare has not announced whether the airdrop will occur at the same time as the ‘snapshot’ or sometime shortly after, though holders will have up to six months after the snapshot to claim their tokens. After June 12th 2021, all unclaimed tokens will be burned.
If you hold XRP, there are a few ways to claim your Spark. At the simplest, a number of exchanges will support the airdrop and for many, all you have to do is have your XRP on them on 12/12 and the tokens will be distributed into your account when the airdrop occurs. To see if your exchange will be supporting the airdrop, check here (https://flare.xyz/supporting-exchanges/).
If you hold your XRP on a hot or cold wallet that’s not an exchange, there are a couple of extra steps involved. To be clear though, you should absolutely check with your wallet’s website to see if they have posted steps. Each wallet may have different idiosyncrasies and we can’t be held liable for any loss if you follow our advice.
- First, although Flare uses its own protocol, you will have to create a new Ethereum address on your wallet as its main integration is with the EVM. So go ahead and do that on your wallet of choice and name it something recognizable and obvious like “Eth Spark Wallet”. Then you’ll want to copy and save that wallet’s public key in your notes.
- Now you’ll need a wallet capable of writing a “MessageKey” to the XRP Ledger like Xumm. If you’re on mobile, you can download Xumm from your phone’s app store. After you download Xumm, create a PIN then click ‘Add Account” and “Import Existing Account” and select “Family Seed”. Import the private key from your XRP wallet that contains your balance into the Xumm wallet. You’ll want to double check that the Public Key that displays matches your primary wallet’s Public Key.
3. Next, you’ll have to use this tool created by XRP developer Wietse Wind that is, at the moment, the only available tool to claim your tokens: https://flare.wietse.com/ Check the boxes and disclaimers that acknowledge that this is just a tool and the developer has no liable and gives no guarantees or support. After, click “Xumm sign in” and connect your Xumm account, accepting the sign in. You will see a “Signed successfully” message, confirming the link.
4. Next you will choose “Generate ETH compatible account (optional)” and click on “Skip this step, I own an ETH compatible account & own the secret.” Here, you will take the Ethereum address you created in your wallet at the beginning of this process, and paste it then click Next.
5. The last thing you need to do is to store this Eth address in a MessageKey on the XRP Ledger. On the “Confirm account ownership on the XRP Ledger.” section, it will recognize that you signed in with Xumm. Click “Next” and you should receive a notification through Xumm asking you to sign the transaction. Confirm the transaction on Xumm, and you will see a confirmation message on the Wietse tool page.
That’s it. That’s all you have to do except wait for the Spark tokens to be distributed into your account. Again, we just want to reiterate that these are the basic standard steps, and you should check on your wallet’s website to see if they have posted their own series of steps.
-JDIX @ seems-legit.com
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