Dogecoin: It’s Time to “Settle Down”

    05 Feb 2022

    The Dogecoin team is turning the most famous meme coin into a serious crypto project, as the Dogecoin Foundation, together with Vitalik Buterin (the creator of Ethereum), has announced the first-ever DOGE roadmap for 2022. The main point outlined there is Dogecoin switching to the Proof-of-Stake algorithm.

    Ever since its inception in 2013, the Dogecoin cryptocurrency (ticker DOGE) has not had a clear development plan. Unsurprisingly, considering it was launched as a joke, the creators (IBM programmer Billy Markus and Adobe product manager Jackson Palmer) did not treat their project too seriously.

    Dogecoin did not solve any critical problems – it was created, like Litecoin, as an alternative to other cryptocurrencies. However, the coin turned out to be quite successful, advantaged by the high speed of transactions and creating new blocks, low commission (not tied to the transaction volumes), anonymity, functional network scalability, and listing on the largest cryptocurrency exchanges.

    Dogecoin was created based on the same algorithm (Scrypt) as Litecoin, but with a few differences. A new block appears within one minute – 2.5 times faster than LTC, providing for a higher transaction speed. Online confirmation takes about 6 minutes, mining difficulty is recalculated every 240 blocks, and the emission is unlimited.

    In 2017-2018, when new, mostly irrelevant cryptocurrencies were springing up everywhere, Dogecoin was called the favorite cryptocurrency of “schoolchildren and rookie investors”. But the first meme-coin unexpectedly managed to carve a niche for itself in the cryptocurrency world – in particular, DOGE became very popular as an intermediary in transactions with various little-known cryptocurrencies – “shitcoins”.

    The project surprised everyone: it not only survived, but also developed into something quite significant. In January 2018, DOGE’s market capitalization reached $2 billion. It got pumped up by a TikTok flashmob in the summer of 2020 and grew in value by more than 800% in 24 hours in January 2021, reaching a price of 7 cents per coin due to the actions of Reddit users. Then, in February and May of 2021, Doge was taken up by Elon Musk, who started promoting the cryptocoin in his Twitter posts.

    Following all this, DOGE, which started the year at a ridiculous price of $0.004, soared to $0.73 in May, demonstrating one of the most impressive pumps in the history of cryptocurrencies. Then the rate somewhat stabilized at $0.18 per crypto coin. In total, 132.67 billion DOGE have been issued so far; the coin market capitalization is $24.93 billion.

    A major step was made in 2021 with the establishment of a non-profit Dogecoin Foundation, which took over the project’s further development. Moreover, none other than Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin joined the organization in mid-August. Back in early September, he suggested transferring Dogecoin from the current Proof-of-Work (PoW) to the Proof-of-Stake (PoS) consensus algorithm, that is, switching from mining to staking.

    Now, finally, the Dogecoin Foundation has “rolled out” a roadmap – the first in the project’s history. The plan is called Trailmap and is available on the official Dogecoin Foundation website. The main goal is to turn Dogecoin into a convenient payment instrument, and the Trailmap outlines the necessary steps: simplification, usability, and network reliability.

    The roadmap, in particular, provides for the altcoin’s shift to staking (the Proof-of-Stake consensus algorithm). At the same time, the Dogecoin Foundation stated that they want to create a unique and maximally fair staking system for their community, which would allow all altcoin owners, not just large holders, to get rewarded for maintaining the network.

    Eight more projects mentioned in the paper (though without much detail) include Dogepedia, Libdogecoin (infrastructure), Dogecoin Standard (documentation), GigaWallet (payment service), and others.

    Most importantly, the Trailmap establishes the vector for future development: retail payments and micropayments. The Dogecoin Foundation team plans to look at various ways to enter payment systems, retail, social networks, and computer games markets. Active recruitment of developers has already begun, and the first projects are supposed to be presented to the public in a few months.

    The developers, however, started by reworking the project’s official website – The Foundation claimed that several teams of web designers were involved in making it more informative. It coincided with the creation of Dogepedia – a network encyclopedia with information for the casual user. The innovations were scheduled for January.

    The second essential component of the new infrastructure listed in Trailmap is Libdogecoin. It is a library that allows developers to build their products for the network without having to understand the in-depth specifics or cryptographic functions. Unlike the cumbersome and outdated Dogecoin Core Wallet, the C-written library supports multiple programming languages, including Python, Ruby, Node.js, and others. Third-party teams are also able to create nodes for specific purposes.

    The third of the projects announced to the community is Dogecoin Standard. It is a set of documents with network operation specifications. Unlike Dogepedia, it is designed for tech-savvy, skilled developers. Among other things, Dogecoin Standard fills the role of the project’s white paper. It is meant to standardize the functionality and reduce the barrier of entry for new developers.

    Dogecoin Gigawallet is another innovation described in the roadmap. It is the infrastructure for processing DOGE transactions, which can be deployed by any exchange, payment system, or retailer. Finally, the Keyring and RadioDoge projects are mentioned in the Trailmap, but what they are is still unclear.

    Notably, the price of DOGE barely reacted to the roadmap publication, which proves, let’s say, the rather noticeable infantilism of the majority of crypto coin users. For them, Elon Musk’s tweets still mean much more than the serious work of the project team. Hopefully, it won’t impede the Dogecoin Foundation’s efforts.

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