Hackernoon logoRavencoin Review — A Bitcoin Code Fork Looking to Bring Real-World Assets onto Blockchain by@coincrunchio

Ravencoin Review — A Bitcoin Code Fork Looking to Bring Real-World Assets onto Blockchain

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The Raven is a highly symbolic creature that is mentioned in a variety of cultures with varied purposes . One of the meanings is that of transformation.

As Ravencoin is a fork of the Bitcoin code it could very well be this meaning that the developers wanted to express. It is with this imagery that we introduce Ravencoin.

Ravencoin is a new project that was announced on October 31st, 2017 and debuted on Bitcoin’s 9th birthday on January 3rd, 2018 with the release of software for mining.

Ravencoin is more than a fork of the Bitcoin code it is a project that builds upon the original vision of Bitcoin but with added new features which extend the functionality and the intrinsic value of the coin organically.

Ravencoin: Clone of bitcoin that will be used for assets. Improved bitcoin built for assets

Ravencoin is a free open source platform designed for the specific use case of transferring assets such as token-backed assets from one holder to another.

While it may seem that with the development of the great blockchains such as Bitcoin and Ethereum, transferring assets between different parties is already a solved issue, it is not exactly the case. Neither Bitcoin nor Ethereum were specifically designed for facilitating ownership of additional assets, do to the fact that they simply focused their attention in other features.

Ravencoin is built on a fork of the Bitcoin code. It has been implemented with a smaller block reward of one minute (the block reward is the only way that new coins are created and it is an incentive for miners to add hash power to the network), and the addition of asset creation and message capabilities.

If you are a crypto-lover, and we are sure you are because you are reading this right now. You will agree that blockchain tech will indeed change global economic paradigm as we know it nowadays.

However being able to send wealth transactions in a matter of seconds, internationally and with no third parties involved, is just the tip of the iceberg that this new revolution represents.

In the same path of unstoppable evolution, Ravencoin will implement the way assets owners operate with their wells. It will allow them to handle efficiently the transfer of their assets to another parties.

To live this world order revolution without losing any keypoint:


Despite the success and widespread adoption of Bitcoin and Ethereum, neither of these blockchains have been specifically designed to facilitate the ownership of additional assets on top of the tokens that are transacted throughout their respective networks.

In Bitcoin, the original rules governing the blockchain and protocol must be adhered to and so this means that Bitcoin nodes are not able to register that assets are being embedded into tokens.

This means that for every asset transaction made on the Bitcoin network, there must be an accompanying bitcoin transaction fee, even if the transaction is to simply send the asset.

This has a result of unnecessary transaction fees whenever assets are transferred. Additionally, the other major disadvantage is that assets can easily be ‘destroyed’ if they are sent to an exchange or wallet.

For Ethereum the network is not able to natively recognize smart contract tokens and this can cause some confusion due to multiple ERC20 tokens with identical names. The only distinguishing factor between contracts with identical names is the contract hash and this can confuse users or be used with malicious intent to scam others.

As Ravencoin will be running on a decentralized model with independent miners to support the stability of the blockchain combined with ASIS-resistance the coin will have a good chance of staying in the hands of individuals and not centralized by one party or a group of parties that can collude to shape the outcome of an event, a vote or even the price of the coin itself.

  • Peer to Peer Electronic System for the Creation and Transfer of Assets
  • Optimized for transferring assets
  • Tokens offer several advantages to traditional shares or other participation mechanisms: faster transfer speeds, increased user control, and censorship resistance, and a reduction or elimination of the need for a trusted third party.


The solution to the above issues is to create a Bitcoin-like system that is completely asset aware so that it recognizes when tokens have been designed as assets.

With a view to solve the problem, Ravencoin will bring to life the said:

“Keep it simple stupid”

by focusing on creating one thing, just one specific thing… a bitcoin-like system , totally aware about when tokens are designed as assets (Based on PoW but with a new mining algorithm, x16r).

This provides three advantages:

  1. Assets can be protected from accidentally being destroyed. As the protocol and the system is aware of the assets — they can be carried on the blockchain like a passenger on the train eventually getting them all safely to the destination.
  2. Users are able to issue, track, and transfer assets with each other with the ease of sending a message to one another. Now users will relay on a full platform specifically designed to issue, track and transfer assets between parties.
  3. It will provide proper security levels to the underlying assets. To do that Ravencoin will depend on a wide distribution, a strong mining community and market value to function.

Main Features — Tech Overview

Ok, now we understand the problem (the proposed one, between the many existing issues) that needs to be solved in current blockchain and we know the solution that Ravencoin is committed to develop in order to transcend that limitation.

So… whats next?. We need to go deep into their tech… it seems boring, but we will take care of that. Only in that way we will really have knowledge and foundations to take decisions about the project.

Ravencoin bring us the following features:

X16R Algorithm

Before we describe what X16R is we will first provide details behind what other coins have implemented for their algorithms.

In the search to create and implement algorithms that are ASIC resistant (meaning that purpose built mining machines with high hash rates could not be developed) which in turn reduces the chances of centralization via large mining farms, projects have tried a variety of tactics to hinder this centralization (like we see with Bitcoin mining).

The first approach was to adopt memory intensive algorithms like those used by both Scrypt and Equihash. This requirement for additional in memory calculations reduces the performance of the ASIC to more onpar of the GPU based mining with the same algorithm

Another approach that was undertaken, was Dash’s approach, which was to adopt the X11 algorithm. This is the use of 11 chained hashing algorithms (hence the name) in an effort to slow down the creation of ASIC hardware.

This did not prevent the design of a special purpose ASIC so once there was an ASIC for X11, others added more hashing algorithms to create additional algorithms that were named X13, X15 and X17. This makes it more difficult to create an ASIC but because the algorithms are in roughly the same order its difficult but not impossible to create an ASIC.

What Ravecoin is doing is called X16r and that implementation like the others described previously use 16 algorithms for the hashing (see table below). The key difference is they have added algorithm reordering. It is this reordering based on the results from the previous block that provides more ASIC resistance than other hashing algorithms.


Previous Block Hash: 0000000000000000007e8a29f052ac2870045ae3970270f9​7da00919b8e86287

The final 8 bytes: ​0x7da00919b8e86287 determines what the next 16 hashes should be.


Phase 1 — Complete

Ravencoin (RVN) is a Proof of Work coin built on the Bitcoin UTXO model. As with other Bitcoin derivatives, RVN coins are distributed to persons augmenting the Raven network by mining Raven.

  • x1000 coin distribution (21 Billion Total)
  • 10x faster blocks (1 per minute)
  • In app CPU mining
  • ~1.4 Day difficulty adjustment (2016 blocks)
  • Addresses start with R… for regular addresses, or r… for multisig
  • Network Port: 8767
  • RPC Port: 8766


The Unspent Transaction Output is key to bitcoin as this is how bitcoin keeps track of inputs and outputs on the blockchain. First let’s look at how a bank works.

Assume Tom is with Bank A and has a balance of $5,000 and assume that Alice who does all her banking with Bank B has no balance.

Tom wants to send $2,000 dollars to Alice. To do this Tom asks his bank to send $2,000 to Bank B in Alice’s name.

The actual transaction has Tom’s balance reduced by $2,000 from $5,000 to $3,000 and Alice’s balance increases from $0 to $2,000.

Taking this to the Bitcoin blockchain:

Tom has received inputs in the amount of 5 BTC. This is from 4 transactions (inputs)


  • Received 2 BTC
  • Received 1 BTC = 5 BTC
  • Received 1.5 BTC
  • Received .5 BTC

In this example, Tom wants to send Alice 2 BTC. The blockchain, unlike banks, is not aware of balances as in the example above so the transaction is recorded as :


  • 2 BTC sent to Alice
  • 3 BTC sent back to Tom → this is the Unspent Transaction Output or UTXO

Phase 2 — Assets (in progress)ASIC RESISTANCE

ASIC Resistance — A published commitment to continual attempts at ASIC resistance. If ASICs are created for x16r, then we will, at a specific block number, modify one of the algorithms to add Equihash, EthHash or similar efforts to increase the resistance to ASIC miners for Raven.


Ravencoin will be a hard fork that extends Raven to include the ability to issue and transfer assets. The expected release of asset capabilities will be approximately seven months after the release of RVN. Raven will be extended to allow issuing, reissuing, and transfer of assets. Assets can be reissuable or limited to a set supply at the point of issuance.

The cost to create assets will be 500 RVN to create any qty of an asset. Each asset name must be unique. Asset names will be limited to A-Z and 0–9, ‘‘ and ‘.’ and must be at least three characters long. The ‘.’ and the ‘‘ cannot be the first, or the last character, or be consecutive.

Examples of valid assets:


Examples of invalid assets:

A..B (consecutive punctuation)

The RVN used to issue assets will be sent to a burn address, which will reduce the amount of RVN available.

Asset transfers require the standard RVN transaction fees for transfer from one address to another.


Metadata about the token can be stored in IPFS. Initially this cannot be changed. If there is a demand, the system can be updated to allow updating the metadata by the token issuer.


Reward capabilities will be added to allow payment (in RVN) to all holders of an asset. Payments of RVN would be distributed to all asset holders pro rata. This is useful for paying dividends, dividing payments, or rewarding a group of token holders.

Example: A small software company issues an asset GAMECO that represents a share of the project. GAMECO tokens can be traded with others. Once the software company profits, those profits can be distributed to all holders of GAMECO by sending the profits (via RVN) to all holders of GAMECO.


Raven may increase the blocksize from 1 MB to X MB to allow for more on-chain transactions.

Phase 3 — Rewards

The reward system will allow for the creation of tokens that sit on the Raven blockchain. These tokens can be created and then sent to people as a reward for doing something or as a way to raise funds. The funds raised can then be used to send any currency on the raven blockchain to another party.

Phase 4 — Unique Assets

Once created, assets can be made unique for a cost of 5 RVN. Only non-divisible assets can be made unique. This moves an asset to a UTXO and associates a unique identifier with the txid. From this point the asset can be moved from one address to another and can be traced back to its origin. Only the issuer of the original asset can make an asset unique.

The costs to make unique assets will be sent to a burn address.

Some examples of unique assets:

  • Imagine that an art dealer issues the asset named ART. The dealer can then make unique ART assets by attaching a name or a serialized number to each piece of art. These unique tokens can be transferred to the new owner along with the artwork as a proof of authenticity. The tokens ART:MonaLisa and ART:VenusDeMilo are not fungible and represent distinct pieces of art.
  • A software developer can issue the asset with the name of their software ABCGAME, and then assign each ABCGAME token a unique id or license key. The game tokens could be transferred as the license transfers. Each token ABCGAME:398222 and ABCGAME: are unique tokens.
  • In game assets. A game ZYX_GAME could create unique limited edition in-game assets that are owned and used by the game player. Example: ZYX_GAME:Sword005 and ZYX_GAME:Purse
  • RVN based unique assets can be tied to real world assets. Create an asset named GOLDVAULT. Each gold coin or gold bar in a vault can be serialized and audited. Associated unique assets GOLDVAULT:444322 and GOLDVAULT:555994 can be created to represent the specific assets in the physical gold vault. The public nature of the chain allows for full transparency.

Phase 5 — Messaging

Messaging to token holders by authorized senders will be layered on top of the Phase 3 unique assets. See KAAAWWW Protocol for additional information.

Phase 6 — Voting

Voting will be accomplished by creating and distributing parallel tokens to token holders. These tokens can be sent to RVN addresses to record a vote.

Team + Advisors

Dubbed a community coin. Anyone can contribute and add to the project.

The number of developers involved is uncertain, however there were 430 Bitcoin developers who made over 14,000 commits according to Github.

Tron Black — Core Developer
  • Tron has been in Blockchain & cryptocurrencies as a Software Developer for 5+ years. Currently a Principal Software Developer for Medici a VC investing in the blockchain space. His career mission is to enhance technology to solve real world problems.
  • He was the President/CEO at Blue Squirrel for 17+ years. Blue Squirrel is a software development company their original product was SQURL, it was the google of the internet at the time.
  • Created Paten — System to Verify Identity and Reputation for a Cryptocurrency Wallet Address :
  • Patent dateFiled June 6, 2013 Patent issuer and numberus 61831802.
  • Patent descriptionMethod and system for voluntary identification of a corporate or individual identity to public crypto-currency address(es), and a single digit reputation rating system accessible through API.
Bruce Fenton — Advisor
  • Bruce is a Blockchain Economic Advisor. He has had 23+ years of experience in the Finance sector and combined with 3+ years experience in the blockchain and cryptocurrency space.
  • He has placed over $5 billion in investments in investing funds during his career.
  • Advised the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation — arranged, attended and staffed very senior level meetings between Bill Gates and business and government leaders in Saudi Arabia, worked with the Head of Middle East for the foundation (please note, opinions on digital money and economic issues are not that of the foundation).
  • Hosted the Satoshi Roundtable private retreat, a gathering of 75 of the top leaders in blockchain technology.
  • Angel Investor in SpeechWorks (now publicly traded Nuance with $5bn market cap).
  • Angel Investor in Bitcoin companies such as ShapeShift.
  • Advisor to Factom, BTCS and other companies.
  • Currently hold 3 roles:
  • Board Member of The Bitcoin Foundation (2+ years), which is the largest and oldest industry group for Bitcoin Technology.
  • Founder at Satoshi Roundtable Private Blockchain Retreat (3+ years), which is a invite only VIP annual event.
  • Managing Director. CIO for atlantic Financial Inc. (23+)

Partners and Investors

Contributing Companies:

Additonal Resources:

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