What is Ontology?
Ontology (ONT) is a NEO-based token that was distributed to campaign participants via “airdrop,” or the disbursement of coins for free. Ontology is a public blockchain project and one of the first of its kind to be released on the NEO platform (NEO is affectionately referred to “China’s Ethereum”). It hails itself as a “distributed trust collaboration platform.” While it only exists as a token for now, Ontology has plans to build a system of high-performance blockchains that include a series of distributed ledgers and smart contract systems, like Ethereum and other token-hosting platforms.
The Ontology framework is designed to support customizable blockchains for user-developed applications. It encourages collaboration among different chain networks and protocol groups within the platform so that individual applications can integrate other applications within the system to help streamline its processes.
History of Ontology
One of the first tokens to be publicly released on the NEO platform, Ontology was founded by computer scientist Jun Li, in 2017. Li, also an expert in blockchain development, was previously employed by international IT firms and major Chinese financial exchanges, taking part in the design of blockchain architecture for several other projects.
Ontology has the distinction of bypassing the ICO process (no funds were raised) for its release, instead being distributed to registrants who signed up for the project’s mailing list within a designated period. Its egalitarian principles have proved to be tremendously popular, with ONT surpassing a billion-dollar market cap in April 2018, after being on the markets for less than 5 weeks.
How Ontology Works
In the same vein as Ethereum, Lisk, NEM and NEO, Ontology is a platform that allows for not only token creation but also dApp (decentralized application) development. Because of its unique method of initial distribution (airdrop), its ownership is highly decentralized, meaning no single individual was awarded more tokens than any other upon release of the token. This has the benefit of providing equality among users and makes it hard for any one person or group of individuals to monopolize the system.
Ontology uses a set of “common modules” within its underlying infrastructure that are available for any developer who wishes to create an dApp within the platform. These are basically standardized software building blocks that have been tested and approved for use by the Ontology development team, which allows for the avoidance of exploitable coding mistakes that have frequently been the pitfall of major platform coins like Ethereum.
Besides acting as a public, transparent system of ledgers that are easily accessible and require no special permissions to join or become an application developer, Ontology strives to provide its users with some unique features not seen with most other cryptocurrencies. These include:
- a distributed digital identity framework that provides verification of account and data ownership
- a distributed data exchange protocol that connects all chains running on the ONT platform (collectively referred to as the “Ontology Ecosystem”)
- system interaction protocols that allow for compatibility with “cross-chain, cross-system, and cross-industry scenarios” that reside on the ONT platform
- continual development of new common modules to be used by ONT app developers for specific scenario requirements