The IOTA Foundation recently announced a $5 million grant program designed to contribute to research related to the Coordicide project, which consists of eliminating the centralised coordination node in the network.
The Coordicide project
In May of this year, the IOTA Foundation announced its Coordicide project, a major and well-planned update for IOTA that aims to remove the centralised coordination node of the network.
At present, the IOTA Foundation may theoretically manipulate the network by choosing whether or not to prioritise certain transactions, or it can decide to freeze the funds of certain users.
Having a single coordinator also entails having a single point of failure and this facilitates possible network attacks, besides being a bottleneck for scalability.
To further contribute to its project, the IOTA Foundation has allocated about $5 million to research and development. Some of the areas of study include spam prevention, Tangle network optimisation, reputation systems, and decentralised random number generation.
The Tangle network
Unlike most cryptocurrencies, IOTA does not use a blockchain-based network. It uses a direct acyclic graph (DAG), which allows high scalability but also presents some problems in terms of security, decentralisation and resource management.
In fact, the Tangle network depends directly on its users who must validate two other previous transactions in order to send a transaction. In all this, the coordinator must ensure that the current transaction does not contradict previous transactions, to avoid double-spending or the use of non-existent funds.
To stay up to date on the progress of the project, please visit the official website dedicated to the Coordicide project.