Near

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This content was generated by Whalee (BETA), an AI crypto assitant that analyses cryptocurrencies. Informations can be incomplete and/or erroneous. Please always double check and DYOR.

What is Near?

The NEAR Protocol is a decentralized, sharded, proof-of-stake blockchain designed to be simple, secure, and scalable. It supports a wide range of applications, including decentralized finance (DeFi), non-fungible tokens (NFTs), and decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs). The native cryptocurrency, NEAR, is used for various purposes such as staking, data storage, and compensating validators and developers. The NEAR Foundation, a non-profit organization, oversees the ecosystem's development and governance.

How is Near used?

The crypto Near (NEAR) is primarily used for staking, which underpins the validation of blocks on the Near Protocol network. Stakers are rewarded in NEAR tokens for their participation in the validation process. Additionally, NEAR tokens are used for various activities within the Near ecosystem, such as deploying and interacting with decentralized applications (dApps) and non-fungible tokens (NFTs).

How do I store Near?

To store NEAR tokens, you have several options:

  1. Ledger Hardware Wallet: Ledger offers a secure and trusted way to store NEAR tokens. You can buy and store NEAR on Ledger's hardware wallet, which stores your private keys offline and signs transactions securely. You can manage your NEAR tokens using the Ledger Live app on desktop and mobile devices.

  2. Web Wallets: Web wallets like My NEAR Web Wallet and others provide a convenient way to interact with the NEAR network without needing to install a wallet. These wallets support Ledger hardware devices for added security.

  3. Mobile Wallets: Mobile wallets like Atomic Wallet and Guarda Wallet are available on various devices and can be used to store NEAR tokens. These wallets often support Ledger connections for enhanced security.

  1. Custodians: You can also use custodial services, which manage your NEAR tokens on your behalf. However, be cautious when using these services, as they may have risks associated with them.

  2. Self-Custody: For advanced users, self-custody options are available. You can generate a keypair using the NEAR command-line interface (CLI) and manage your NEAR tokens offline. This method requires technical expertise and careful key management.

Remember to always follow best practices for securing your private keys and managing your NEAR tokens to avoid potential risks and losses.

How to buy Near?

To buy NEAR Protocol (NEAR) tokens, follow these steps:

  1. Create an Account:

    • Register on a cryptocurrency exchange or wallet that supports NEAR Protocol, such as Binance, Crypto.com, Kucoin, or SpectroCoin.
    • Verify your identity and secure your account with two-step verification.
  2. Add a Payment Method:

    • Add a payment method like a debit/credit card, bank account, or third-party payment service to your exchange or wallet account.
  3. Choose Your Purchase Method:

  • You can buy NEAR directly with fiat currency (e.g., USD) or purchase a stablecoin like USDT and then swap it for NEAR.
  • Some exchanges like MoonPay allow you to buy NEAR with credit cards, bank transfers, Apple Pay, or Google Pay.
  1. Confirm Your Order:

    • Enter the amount of NEAR you want to purchase and confirm your order. Be aware that prices may fluctuate during the confirmation process.
  2. Store Your NEAR:

    • Once purchased, store your NEAR tokens in a secure wallet, either on the exchange or in a personal wallet like Trust Wallet.

Remember to research and understand the risks involved in investing in cryptocurrencies before making a purchase.

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History of Near

The history of Near Protocol (NEAR) began in 2017 when Illia Polosukhin and Alexander Skidanov founded NEAR.ai to explore program synthesis. They initially tried to use Ethereum for payment but found it unsuitable, leading them to develop their own blockchain, the NEAR protocol, in 2018. This marked the beginning of their vision to provide developers with an easy path for building decentralized applications that could scale effortlessly.

In 2019, the NEAR Foundation was established as a non-profit to foster ecosystem growth and protocol development. The NEAR mainnet launched in April 2020 and became completely community-operated in September 2020. A vote to enable token transfers passed in October 2020.

In 2021, the first phase of sharding started, which is a unique technology that enables the NEAR blockchain to scale effortlessly. In 2022, NEAR closed a $500 million funding round, providing the means to support further development of the protocol and growth of the ecosystem.

Today, NEAR is a sharded, proof-of-stake, layer-one blockchain that is simple to use, secure, and scalable. It has a vast ecosystem of applications, infrastructure, and support built by a network of developers, entrepreneurs, and creatives. The NEAR Foundation continues to foster ecosystem development and innovation through grant funding.

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How Near works

The crypto Near (NEAR) is the native token of the Near Protocol, a layer 1 blockchain network designed to provide a platform for developers to build decentralized applications (dApps). Here's how it works:

Key Features
  • Sharding Technology: Near Protocol uses a technique called sharding to improve transaction speed and capacity. Sharding involves breaking up the blockchain into sub-chains with different validators working on them, which regularly get connected to one another. This approach allows the network to handle a large volume of transactions without becoming too big and slow.
  • Proof of Stake (PoS) Consensus: Near Protocol employs a PoS consensus mechanism, which is more energy-efficient compared to the traditional Proof of Work (PoW) model used by Ethereum. In PoS, validators are required to "stake" a certain volume of tokens to validate blocks and are rewarded with more tokens for their participation.
  • Native Token: The NEAR token serves as the primary means for paying transaction fees and collateral for storing data on the blockchain. It also supports the network's PoS consensus mechanism and is used as a reward for validators and developers.
Performance and Scalability
  • Transaction Speed: Near Protocol is designed to be faster than Ethereum, with the potential to process up to 100,000 transactions per second (TPS). This is significantly higher than Ethereum's average of double-digit TPS and even surpasses the capacity of major payment networks like Visa.
  • Scalability: The sharding technology used by Near Protocol allows it to handle a high volume of transactions without compromising performance. This makes it suitable for large-scale applications and decentralized finance (DeFi) use cases.
Interoperability and Compatibility
  • Rainbow Bridge: Near Protocol includes the ETH ↔ NEAR Rainbow Bridge, which allows assets to flow freely between the Near and Ethereum blockchains. This bridge enables the use of Ethereum ERC-20 tokens on the Near blockchain, making it compatible with a wide range of tokens and applications.
  • Developer Tools: The Near ecosystem offers various tools and services for developers, including the Near Software Development Kit (SDK) and Near Studio, an online development environment. These tools make it easy for developers to build dApps on the NEAR protocol.
Security and Governance
  • Security: Near Protocol is secured through its PoS consensus mechanism, which is designed to be equally secure as PoW but consumes less electrical power and is more environmentally friendly.
  • Governance: NEAR holders can participate in the network's governance by voting on proposals to improve the network.

Overall, Near Protocol is designed to provide a fast, scalable, and secure platform for developers to build decentralized applications, with its native token NEAR playing a central role in the network's operations.

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Near's strengths

The NEAR token, native to the NEAR Protocol, has several strengths. Firstly, it is designed to be developer-friendly, offering scalability via sharding and shared security, similar to Polkadot. This sharding approach, known as "chunk sharding," allows for better composability and reduces hardware requirements for nodes, making it easier to build lite clients and mobile-friendly clients.

Additionally, NEAR has a relatively short unbonding period of 24-36 hours compared to other protocols, and its annual inflation rate of 5% can become deflationary due to a fee-burning mechanism that depends on increased usage. This token also incentivizes decentralization by not providing added benefits to pooling staked tokens, unlike some other protocols.

Furthermore, NEAR is building a trustless bridge with Ethereum, which can act as a low-cost, scalable alternative to various layer 2 solutions. The protocol's focus on developer-friendliness is evident in its use of WASM (WebAssembly) for running nodes, allowing contracts to be built in Rust or JavaScript, and providing a one-click deployment environment. This makes it easier for developers to work with NEAR and subsidize user fees.

Overall, the NEAR token's strengths lie in its scalability, decentralization, and developer-friendly features, which aim to address the shortcomings of other protocols like Ethereum.

Near's risks

Near (NEAR) is a cryptocurrency that operates on a proof-of-stake (PoS) blockchain. While the specific risks associated with NEAR are not explicitly mentioned in the provided sources, we can discuss some general risks that might be relevant to NEAR and other cryptocurrencies:

  1. Market Volatility: Cryptocurrencies are known for their price fluctuations, which can result in significant losses for investors. Market volatility can be influenced by various factors, including supply and demand, regulatory changes, and global economic conditions.

  2. Security Risks: As a blockchain-based cryptocurrency, NEAR is vulnerable to potential security breaches or hacks. These can compromise user data, disrupt transactions, or even lead to the theft of funds.

  3. Regulatory Uncertainty: The regulatory environment for cryptocurrencies is still evolving and often unclear. Changes in regulations or laws can impact the legality and usability of NEAR, affecting its value and adoption.

  1. Competition: The cryptocurrency market is highly competitive, with numerous alternatives to NEAR. If other cryptocurrencies offer better features, security, or usability, they might attract users away from NEAR, negatively impacting its value and adoption.

  2. Scalability Issues: As the user base of NEAR grows, the blockchain may face scalability challenges, leading to slower transaction times, higher fees, or even network congestion. This can negatively impact user experience and the overall value of the cryptocurrency.

  3. Environmental Impact: The energy consumption required to maintain the NEAR blockchain, particularly if it transitions to a proof-of-work (PoW) consensus mechanism, can contribute to environmental concerns such as climate change.

  1. Liquidity Risks: If there is low liquidity in the NEAR market, it can be difficult for users to buy or sell the cryptocurrency quickly and at a fair price, leading to potential losses.

  2. Smart Contract Risks: NEAR's smart contract functionality can be vulnerable to bugs, exploits, or unintended behavior, which can result in financial losses or disruptions to the network.

  3. Centralization Risks: If a small group of validators or stakeholders control a significant portion of the NEAR network, it can lead to centralization, undermining the decentralized nature of the blockchain and potentially creating security risks.

  1. Reputation Risks: Negative publicity or controversies surrounding NEAR can damage its reputation, leading to a loss of user trust and a decline in value.

These risks are not exhaustive and may evolve as the cryptocurrency landscape continues to change. It is essential for users and investors to stay informed about the specific risks associated with NEAR and the broader cryptocurrency market.

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Did Near raise funds?

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Near’s team

  • Alexander Skidanov: Co-founder and CEO of NEAR Protocol. He has a strong background in software engineering and has held leadership positions at companies like Microsoft and Change.org. Skidanov is responsible for leading the overall strategy and vision of NEAR Protocol.
  • Illia Polosukhin: Co-founder and CTO of NEAR Protocol. He has extensive experience in software engineering and has worked at companies like Google and NVIDIA. Polosukhin is responsible for leading the technical development of the NEAR Protocol platform.
  • Erik Trautman: Co-founder of NEAR Protocol, involved in the early stages of the project.

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