NEO: The makeover of Antshares Cryptocurrency
Antshares announced on June 22, 2017 that it planned to rebrand itself to NEO Smart Contract Economy in the following months. On August 8, 2017 it declared the process is complete all with updated official sites, documentation, social media handles and the network nodes.
NEO is still widely considered “China’s Ethereum” because it, like Ethereum, is aiming to build a platform on which other DApps or Decentralized Applications could be built by letting users execute smart contract code on their Blockchain. In fact, the first ICO on the NEO blockchain Red Pulse Token (RPX) was announced soon after the rebranding finished.
One advantage that NEO has over Ethereum is that it supports most advanced programming languages like C#, Java and Python whereas Ethereum has its own programming language called Solidity which could take a while to learn for new developers.
This is one of the major technical differences between Ethereum and NEO. You’ve probably heard of Proof of Work (PoW) and Proof of Stake (PoS) as consensus mechanisms employed by Bitcoin and Ethereum respectively.
The problem with PoW is that it requires a lot of electricity to ensure network security by making nodes compete against each other to solve cryptographic puzzles by hashing.
PoS on the other hand lowers this electricity requirement by making validating nodes stake their currency in order to verify transaction incentivizing honest behavior. But PoS still suffers from the possibility of a chain split in the event that a subset of nodes disagree with administrative decisions – like the split we saw last year which resulted in the creation of Ethereum Classic.
NEO instead uses Delegated Byzantine Fault Tolerance alternative (dBFT) as it’s consensus mechanism which offers lower electricity costs and removes the possibility of a chain split which makes it useful for its goal of digitizing real-world financial assets.
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