Ripple is the catchall name for the cryptocurrency platform, the transactional protocol for which is actually XRP, in the same fashion as Ethereum is the name for the platform that facilitates trades in Ether. Like other cryptocurrencies, Ripple is built atop the idea of a distributed ledger network which requires various parties to participate in validating transactions, rather than any singular centralized authority. That facilitates transactions all over the world, and transfer fees are far cheaper than the likes of bitcoin. Unlike other cryptocurrencies, XRP transfers are effectively immediate, requiring no typical confirmation time. Ripple was originally founded by a single company, Ripple Labs, and continues to be backed by it, rather than the larger network of developers that continue bitcoin’s development. It also doesn’t have a fluctuating amount of its currency in existence. Where bitcoin has a continually growing pool with an eventual maximum, and Ethereum theoretically has no limit, Ripple was created with all of its 100 billion XRP tokens right out of the gate. That number is maintained with no mining and most of the tokens are owned and held by Ripple Labs itself — around 60 billion at the latest count. Even at the recently reduced value of around half a dollar per XRP, that means Ripple Labs is currently sitting on around $20 billion worth of the cryptocurrency (note: Ripple’s price crashed hard recently, and may be worth far less than $60 billion by time you read this). It holds 55 billion XRP in an escrow account, which allows it to sell up to a billion per month if it so chooses in order to fund new projects and acquisitions. Selling such an amount would likely have a drastic effect on the cryptocurrency’s value, and isn’t something Ripple Labs plans to do anytime soon. In actuality, Ripple Labs is looking to leverage the technology behind XRP to allow for faster banking transactions around the world. While Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are built on the idea of separating financial transactions from the financial organizations of traditional currencies, Ripple is almost the opposite in every sense. XRP by Ripple price can be found on this page alongside the market capitalization and additional stats.
High-Performance Blockchain tackles the concept of scalability from a completely different angle. Rather than just looking at the software side of things, the project also tackles the hardware aspect. To realize the optimal performance of blockchain applications, things will need to change in the near future. As such, this team is building an architecture which uses thousands of CPU and FPGA resources to create a more versatile and scalable ecosystem. There are a few aspects of the High-Performance Blockchain project to take into account. First of all, there is the chip-level acceleration engine which provides accelerated hardware chips to power this entire ecosystem. Secondly, the software side of the High-Performance Blockchain is integrated with the new dedicated hardware accelerated engine and focuses on depth and scaling customization. Third, the project claims it can produce a throughput in the millions of transactions without any major problems. While all of this sounds amazing, it is difficult to come by any real information regarding the technical aspects of either the hardware or the software side of High-Performance Blockchain. While the team mainly focuses on blockchain integration for real-world business cases, it remains to be seen how their chips will operate and how their algorithms are created. It seems the High-Performance Blockchain project is closely connected to the NEO infrastructure, which could introduce some interesting developments down the line. Building the High-Performance Blockchain infrastructure will take a lot of time and money. As such, the roadmap is filled with milestones which the team aims to achieve in the coming years. A testnet version of this project will be launched at some point in 2018, which will undergo further improvements for several months. The actual manner will launch in Q2 of 2018 if things go according to plan. However, the official version will not go live until mid-2019 at the earliest.