Cardstack aims to be the most professional and fully developed decentralized software development platform for developers, and full-stack service for end-users. All software transactions between developers and users will occur through Smart Contracts on the platform, which will clearly set the expectations for users and usage rights of the software. Buyers can essentially pay for usage of dApps by using the Cardstack Token (CARD). These CARD tokens are staked in order to use a desired dApp. Staked tokens are then distributed as rewards to the software developer, miners and other stakeholders in the dApp.
Traditional cloud services such as those run by Amazon, Apple and Microsoft are heavily centralized. The results of this are ever-increasing usages fees as few other platforms can compete with the cloud computing capabilities of these companies. Cardtrack believes that blockchain is the answer to this. By performing cloud functions on the blockchain, and rewarding miners and developers in a decentralized manner, the community themselves can compete on pricing. Software developers can be rewarded depending upon actual, verifiable usage of their dApps by users. In essence, a community alternative using the blockchain can be used to compete and perhaps even eclipse the capabilities of the major cloud-computing companies.
Usage statistics of any dApp are easily calculated since the dApp itself is based on the blockchain. Smart Contracts are automatically executed and payment is taken from the end-user depending upon their usage.
Users themselves on the platform will benefit since they will be in control of their own central “hub”, which connects all of the dApps they are running in one central place and allows them to essentially “stack” them together, allowing various forms of flow control.
Development on the Cardstack platform will have an open-community, open-source focus. Essentially, governance models will be created for software projects, and the community, along with automatic algorithms, can determine the rewards to issue to which developers of a dApp based upon their contributions. Developers will have an incentive to keep their projects up to date since they’ll continue to receive CARD tokens depending upon actual usage of their dApp, thus the “Software as a Service” model is heavily incentivized – developers have an actual interest in ensuring their programs remain functional and usable for continued rewards based upon actual usage statistics.
Cardstack itself it not just an idea either, as it has been in development for 3 years already, with a focus on building its core functionality. The aim of the ICO is to attract funding for further development, and to give incentive for developers and users to use the platform given the tokenomics of CARD. The Cardstack team has a wealth of experience from a number of different areas, with the founder himself in software development.
The full scope of Cardstack is difficult to cover in a single article, I strongly recommend you read their whitepaper which is extremely well-written.
ICO & CARD Token
The CARD token will be used for all functionality on the Cardstack blockchain. Users will need to stake CARD to use dApps, and developers, miners and other stakeholders will receive CARD as rewards.
The Cardstack ICO looks to be very fair and well designed, unlike most ICOs I’ve encountered. They’ve even gone to the trouble of setting up a foundation in a crypto-friendly country – Switzerland. The foundation, called Cardstack Foundation, is the one responsible for initiating the ICO. In addition to the ICO, Cardstack will be running a number of airdrops in order to encourage wide adoption of the platform.
Initial Supply At Genesis: 6,000,000,000 CARD
Maximum Supply Possible: 10,000,000,000 CARD
ICO Date: May 31st, 2018
ICO Base Price: ~$0.017 USD per CARD
Early contributors will receive a bonus of 20%, which seems fair and not too high, and yet still offers incentive to contribute early, leading credence to the project reaching its soft cap and beyond. A majority of tokens at genesis are planned to be distributed to end users, which is good to see. The team have a very fair low allocation of 15% of the tokens, with heavy vesting restrictions of 4 years beginning after Year 1.
Cardstack is one of the most professionaly designed ICOs I’ve seen in a long time, which lends it immense credibility in my eyes. The team is verified and real, their vision is a noble and realistic one, and their whitepaper is one of the most well-written since I can remember, with fluent, clear English throughout, and fantastic presentation. The CARD token also has real utility on the platform. The team combines a wealth of software development, business, and blockchain experience, and seem very enthusiastic about the project.
As for the actual product itself, Cardstack has the potential to revolutionize open-source development as we know it by rewarding open-source developers through a decentralized and fair reward system that is decided by algorithmic dApp usage and decentralized community governance. The project offers a fair presentation as to how it aims to tackle the established cloud-computing competitors. The team certainly has a large battle to fight in wrestling market share from their main competitors – Facebook, Google, Apple, Microsoft and Amazon, and this is where I see a medium level of risk in the project. However if they do successfully pull this off, the implications could be deep for decentralized software development.