What is Raiblocks?
The scalability issues plaguing Bitcoin have created a demand for no-fee, fast cryptocurrencies. Raiblocks (XRB) was created to be an answer to that demand, and it’s been growing in popularity much faster than a coin not listed on any major exchanges generally does.
While there is some speculation about Raiblocks becoming an Internet of Things (IoT) application at some point, it is focusing first on being a functional cryptocurrency. Its architecture promises nearly infinite scalability, which will be vital if cryptocurrency is ever broadly used for transactions.
How does Raiblocks work?
A “block-lattice” structure is this cryptocurrency's defining feature. This essentially means that each user owns a personal blockchain. Whereas most other blockchain-based projects put each transaction into the global ledger to ensure accurate record-keeping, Raiblocks simply gives you a mini-ledger that updates your account value with every transaction you make, requiring the sender and the receiver to provide “signatures” before it updates.
Say you have 100 XRB in your account and want to send 2 XRB to your friend, who has 0. You make a “send” transaction, creating a block on your blockchain showing your new account balance as 98 XRB. Your friend’s blockchain creates a “receive” transaction, validates it, and creates a new block with a value of 2.
You can’t send that same 2 XRB twice (double-spending) because every time your blockchain updates it needs to either add or subtract something from the last block you created; in this case, the last block you created was 100 – 2 = 98.
There is a main blockchain that confirms transactions and resolves conflicts, but because it stores only account balance updates—traditional blockchains stores every single transaction—it will stay relatively small. As of the last whitepaper update, the entire ledger (permanent record of value) was only 1.7 gigabytes, while Bitcoin currently sits at 160 gigabytes
The speed advantage comes from the fact that your transactions don’t have to go through nodes on the blockchain. The majority of the work is done on personal blockchains, while the main one is mostly just a backup record.
No-fee transactions stem from the same thing—there is minimal need for incentives to be paid to third parties. There is some “Proof of Work” that has to be completed for each transaction, but it is primarily anti-spam and should take only a few seconds to complete.
Recent major developments
Though XRB is currently not listed on any major exchanges, it won “Community Coin of the Month” from Binance in January. Thus, they are on track to be listed on that exchange within the next few months.
How to buy RaiBlocks
RaiBlocks’s coin is mostly bought and sold on Kucoin. You can’t buy it with fiat currency yet (USD), so here is a quick guide on how to buy RaiBlocks starting with fiat:
1. Buy Bitcoin or Ethereum at an exchange that uses your fiat currency on Coinbase.
2. Transfer your BTC or ETH to an exchange that supports RaiBlocks. Currently, Kucoin is the best choice. (Tip: if you bought BTC/ETH on Coinbase, look into using GDAX to avoid transfer fees)
3. Buy RaiBlocks by trading your BTC/ETH for their coin, and you’re done!
The name comes from Rai stones—a currency used on the Micronesian island of Yap. Rai Stones are carved circular stones weighing up to hundreds of pounds. The ownership of these stones would change, but the stones themselves would remain in place. Colin LeMahieu, who created Raiblocks, named it after these stones ironically, as it is extremely lightweight.