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Crypto | NULS (NULS) Mobile Size Whitepaper

NULS is a blockchain infrastructure for customizable services, driven by our global open-source community.

Abstract

NULS is a blockchain that architecturally enables extendibility using smart contracts, modules and sub-chains.  

It is an open-source project that separates its features into customizable modules such as smart contracts, the multi-chain system, cross-chain consensus and other operating mechanisms.    

In the future, NULS will have multiple sub-chains that are based on functionalities of the main-chain. They will use the underlying protocols and infrastructure of NULS to offer businesses a simplified and tailored solution based on their needs.

1. The  future of Blockchain

Since the beginning of human civilization, we have strived to survive, learn, adapt
and move humanity in a direction that is sustainable for future generations. Our
desire to constantly improve not only our own lives but the lives of others has brought
us into the beginning of the 21st century, “the technological era”. Every day is more
fast-paced than the last and there is no sign of slowing down. The creation of
blockchain technology has catapulted innovation even further and acted as a catalyst
for creative thinkers to get involved in the space. The rich incentivized environment of
blockchain has created opportunities that not only interests the technological savvy
individual, but also the individual that simply wants to be involved in the growth of a
world-wide disruptive technology.

As this technology continues to mature, the demand to solve real world use cases is
becoming more evident. Blockchain however is still in its infancy and an impartial gap
exists between itself and real-world adoption. Part of the issue is that the technology
has a steep learning curve. The other issue is that many blockchains that currently
exist either have a narrowed focus on the problems it solves, or are too broad to fit
the needs of individuals and businesses. A new type of blockchain is required that
not only can comfortably fit the needs of a wide range of businesses, but also is
something that can easily handle development improvements without threatening the
underlying protocol.

2. What is NULS?

NULS is a blockchain with a modular based architecture enabling customizable
modules and sub-chain operability. Its two-part design is the microkernel and the
functional modules. The microkernel provides the underlying mechanisms for the
network while the functional modules are the compartmentalized features of the
blockchain. They have been built with the goal to maintain the well-known
programming practice of high cohesion and low coupling. They also adopt the hot-
pluggable principle allowing modules to be added or removed during operation.

The decentralized nature of NULS is in creating a business model that bridges the
gap of trust in using the technology as well allow users to customize their chain to fit
with their needs. The simplicity of implementation comes from the architectural
design of NULS where complex concepts such as cryptography, consensus
mechanisms and storage methods are abstracted away from the developer and they
need only to be concerned with what they want to build that is within their skillset.

The simple base of the main-chain will provide a set a modular component that can
be customized to the user’s needs. Users will be free to choose the rules of
consensus, storage, smart contracts, arbitration, account systems, anonymity policy
as well as other permissions to designate to their sub-chain. Sub-chains will not be
limited to being public chains but can also be designed as private or consortium
chains.

3. Why was NULS created?

Blockchain uses the chain structure which is limited in performance due to the size of
the database, difficulty in synchronization and the complex task of performing
technical updates on a decentralized network.

A blockchain was needed that not only solves real world problems but also makes
the developer’s life easier. The ability to customize modules to suit the developer’s
needs promotes innovativeness and does not constrain the possibilities of what can
potentially be built. To solve these problems and promote the commercial use of
blockchain technology, NULS was born.

4. NULS' mission

After conducting market research and analysis, we found that there are various
problems that hinder the growth and development of blockchain. Talented individuals
in the IT sector are already hard to come by and developers who are then also
experienced in blockchain is a rarity. This creates a higher cost for development as
these individuals can charge a premium in exchange for their services due to the
simple economic function of demand exceeding supply. This issue cannot be solved
in the short term and will only be solved over time as more developers learn and
understand the technology.

Existing Blockchains are limited in performance and cross-chain communication is
still being explored. Organizations and businesses will not be interested in using a
consortium or private chain that isn’t completely trustworthy. NULS will provide a
reliable solution to these problems.

A. Ease of use
The learning curve for developing on NULS is reduced by hiding some of the
complexity from the developer. The goal of the platform is to improve development
time by offering a simple programmable environment that caters to the less
experienced developer while facilitating extendibility for the more experienced
individual.

B. Adaptable to numerous application scenarios
The application layer is where the developer can take advantage of the infrastructural
support that has been designed as a part of the platform. The developer can easily
perform basic tasks and make use of the modular parts such as the multi-chain
system and smart contracts.

C. High Performance
NULS understands the importance of performance and the limitations of current
Blockchains and is committed to solving these for widespread adoption. Using
parallel expansion technology through the multi-chain system, millions of transactions
per second can be processed through the main-chain and sub-chains.

D. Balance in Transparency and Confidentialty of Data
For organizations and businesses, data confidentiality and security are of utmost
importance. The open-source and transparent nature of Blockchain generally makes
them hesitant to use this new technology. Although NULS is open-source, it protects
the confidentiality of the data in sub-chains through data isolation and cross-chain
auditing. This balance between transparency and confidentiality of data is why NULS
will appeal to commercial businesses despite it being open-source.

5. NULS Economic Model

The token of NULS will be used to promote the entire ecosystem. It will be used to
support NULS based applications, pay for application costs, perform exchange for
sub-chain digital assets, support NULS development, reward miners and pay
transaction fees.

A. The issuance of NULS is divided into 4 parts:
a. Airdrop

40% of the tokens will be airdropped (40 million) to owners of the ERC20
placeholder token.

b. Development Funding
20% of the total tokens (20 million) will go towards continued development. Once
the main net is live, these tokens will be unlocked at the rate of 5% (1 million) per
month over the course of 20 months.

c. Community Funding
20% of the tokens (20 million) will be allocated for building the community, and no
more than 4 million tokens will ever be used per year.

d. Business Cooperation
20% of the tokens (20 million) will be used for business partnerships and to
support high quality NULS based third party projects. No more than 4 million
tokens will ever be used per year.

B. Network Maintenance
5 million NULS will be created through the Proof of Credit (POC) consensus each
year to reward miners and secure the network.

6. Sub-chain Operation

In order to create a healthy ecosystem, all NULS’ sub-chains are required to pay a
certain amount of NULS tokens (amount decided in the future). The purpose of this is
to certify that the sub-chain is indeed a sub-chain of NULS. The amount that would
be required to be paid will be adjusted over time in relation to the current price so that
it always remains within a reasonable range and it will be determined by community
votes.

A. Sub-chain Based Currency and Intelligent Exchange
The token used on the main-chain is NULS and all sub-chains will be able to support
their own basic token. This will be considered as a NULS’ asset and the sub-chain
can easily issue these contract tokens known as IOU assets. The NULS system will
provide the conversion of NULS tokens for smart assets and vice-versa.

If a sub-chain chooses to issue smart assets, a certain amount of NULS will need to
be paid. When the smart assets have been created, the user will set an initial ratio for
the smart asset and the NULS token. A NULS capital pool and smart asset pool will
also be automatically generated and the ratio will be fixed for conversion but
influenced by market values.

If the value of the smart assets on the sub-chain rises, then the NULS capital pool
will require more NULS to support this appreciation in value. As more quality sub-
chain projects work with NULS, this will in turn appreciate the value of NULS.

7. NULS Technical Design

A. Consensus Mechanism - Proof of Credit (POC)
The modular architectural design of NULS supports the insertion of new functional
modules as well as the replacement of the core functional modules in the consensus
mechanism. The user can set the rules for their sub-chain and customize them to
their needs.

The main-chain will use the Proof of Credit (POC) protocol that is the first of its kind
designed by the NULS team. It works like Proof of Stake where a certain number of
tokens will need to be locked before the user can run a node on the network. This
exact amount has yet to be decided and the community will vote on it. When a user
wants to stop running a node, they can immediately unlock their tokens.

B. Yellow Card Alert
When a user generates a block during a internet disconnection, computer crash or
when experiencing network issues, this will not be considered as a violation the
networks rules. However, because this will affect the entire system, a warning will be
given with the coins frozen for a period (e.g. 72 hours) and the credit ratio
downgraded.

C. Red Card Alert
In the case of hostile attacks, double spend attacks, attempts at forking the system or
deliberately trying to attack the system, the NULS network will be able to detect and
protect from vulnerabilities and exploits. Any hostile nodes will have their coins frozen
for a longer period (e.g. 1 month) and their credit ratio will be downgraded again
meaning they are no longer able to meet the minimum amount to participate in the
network.

8. Credit Rating

The crediting system is the coefficient that is used to determine a user’s integrity and
trustworthiness in the network. Credit ratings are between -1 and 1 and are
automatically calculated based on the behavior of the node using the credit rating
algorithm.

Credit Evaluation Formula:
Credit Cardinality = Coefficient of Capacity + Coefficient of Duty
Coefficient of Capacity: Calculated based on the number of blocks generated in the
past
Coefficient of Duty: Calculated based on violation cases and accuracy of blocks
generated

9. Consensus Reward

To ensure balance and fairness of the entire NULS system, the consensus reward is
computed based on the amount of staked coins and the node credit submitted by all
consensus nodes.

A. Sub-chain Consensus Mechanism
NULS provides the underlying infrastructure for all sub-chains and allows
applications to be built on top on their own sub-chain. NULS gives the user the
building blocks required to easily customize their own sub-chain with their own token
and own rules in relation to consensus e.g. (POW, DPOS, POS, PBFT, POOL) so
that users can decide how their chain will operate.

B. Modular Architecture
The design structure of NULS was born out of the understanding that technology is
going to continue to advance at a rapid rate and static technologies will be left behind.
NULS incorporated the modularity of the Linux kernel to give the flexibility of a
dynamic blockchain. Since everything is a module, technical upgrades can easily be
made to add the latest improvements to the Blockchain.

NULS Modular Structure
NULS Kernel: the NULS kernel consists of module manager, service bus and event
bus. The kernel manages all the following modules:
Modular components: Smart Contract, Account, Storage, Account, Consensus,
Processor

NULS built-in modules
Service Module Pack: RPC service module
Processor Module Pack: event processor module → smart contract processor module
Basic Module Pack: consensus module → network module → storage module → news
module → account → account book

C. NULS Module and Module Manager
The module manager is where all modules can be managed, loaded and unloaded
from the chain. Once a module is loaded, it is able to communicate with other
modules and allow for various actions to be performed. From a standard technical
point of view, NULS is like a program that has been designed with the open-closed
principle in mind. Open for extension but closed for modification.

D. Multi-Chain System
The verification of blocks will occur through cross-chain consensus and NULS can
circulate through both the main-chain and the sub-chains. Sub-chains report to the
main-chain and the main-chain audits and verifies the block headers.

E. Cross-chain Consensus Domain (C3D)
Partial nodes of the main-chain and the sub-chain make up the cross-chain
consensus domain (C3D). The nodes agree on cross-chain transactions between
each other and share the data with other nodes in their own chain.

Main-chain consensus domain (surrounded by nodes of main-chain) Sub-chain A
consensus domain (surrounded by nodes of chain A) Sub-chain B consensus domain
(surrounded by nodes of chain B) overlapped /connected area: Cross-chain
consensus domain A, cross-chain consensus domain B

F. Cross-chain Consensus Node (C3N)
Nodes that join cross-chain consensus need to load modules that are operable
across both chains such as the cross-chain network module and the cross-chain
protocol processor module.

NULS Nodes
Main-chain module pack: operates main-chain logic
Cross-chain module pack: NCM network control module, processor module
Communication, protocol
Sub-chain module pack: Operates Sub-chain Logic

G. Safety
Cross-chain consensus protocol consists of two policies to guarantee safety for the
network.
-Minimum node requirements for cross-chain consensus to prevent centralisation of
the domain.
-Dynamic adjustment (rotation) to prevent a single cross-chain node from
broadcasting information continuously to the network.

10. NULS Smart Contract

NULS has a built-in smart contract virtual machine (NULSVM) that is structurally
between the external service module (e.g. RPC module) and the underlying
infrastructure module (e.g. network module, storage module or account module).
The smart contracts are used by the higher-level applications, interpreted by the
interpreter, stored by the storage module and computed by the NULSVM module. It
also supports various higher-level programming languages to cater towards the
developer that wants to develop in their desired language and compiles the program
through the interpreter so that the VM can understand and read the application.

11. Open-source community

NULS is an open-source project that is driven by the Blockchain community. The
open-source nature of the project offers transparency and trust for developers which
is vital in building a strong community. The community will provide comprehensive
development documentation and fully developed tools to assist and support
developer’s. NULS has setup the community foundation with 20 million NULS that
will be used to support excellent projects and reward contributors in the NULS
ecosystem. The NULS community foundation is registered in Singapore (NULS
FOUNDATION PTE. LTD. 201729333G). The main goal of NULS is to promote a
community-driven development platform that incentivizes innovative projects to be
developed and offers the tools to simplify and fast track development for the
developer.

12. NULS Development Roadmap

13. Conclusion

The NULS team is aware of the current issues in the Blockchain space. Trust is an
illusion that has been continuously exposed by hackers, exploitable bugs, malicious
nodes and untrustworthy individuals. NULS’ mission statement of “Making Trust
Simpler” makes them a value driven Blockchain that fortifies its network with the plan
to bridge the gap between businesses and Blockchain adoption. The lack of talented
Blockchain developers is a barrier that will continue to exist in Blockchain hindering
the growth in the space. NULS will become the solution to this problem and their goal
is to build an ecosystem that benefits developers, businesses and supporters of the
project.

これにて本文は終わりです

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