Almost 3 years ago, I travelled to Beijing and met with Catherine Li, Dr King and their team. THEKEY was one of the Biggest ICOs of 2017. They were promising to solve the identity verification problem in China’s health care industry. Their solution used blockchain technology for the non-repudiation of health insurance claims. With a population 1.5 Billion and universal health care freshly implemented during 2009 reforms, there was a clear requirement in the industry for secure health care insurance.
This is Part 2 of my two part interview and AMA with THEKEY CEO Dr King. You can continue on to THEKEY Interview, and there will be a link at the bottom of the page.
I have been fortunate enough to be able to ask Dr Yidong King (CEO of THEKEY), several questions. All of these questions were crowdsourced from the Twitter and Telegram community, and I thank them for their assistance.
I want to highlight that the community questions I had sent to me were fantastic. I asked for 'concise, polite & professional' questions, and that was exactly what I received. This community is showing its maturity, which makes sense, as it is one of the few original ICO communities still around.
A recent poll showed that half the community voted to hear more about the recent developments above all other option. I hope this also motivates the team to keep pushing ahead with new developments and interacting with the community, as we are all still believing in you.
THEKEY AMA: Exchanges
Let’s get the inevitable question out of the way first...
Q. ‘When Binance’
Before you answer this, I would like to give my personal thoughts on this. I see two categories of projects being listed on the top tier exchanges.
Projects that have launched their blockchain product and have real world relevancy.
Projects that pay an exorbitant sum of money and list for short term monetary benefits...
Considering THEKEY fits neither of these categories at the moment, I don’t see why TKY would pursue a top tier exchange at this point in time. In addition, for illiquid tokens, spreading the trading over multiple exchanges may make things worse… HOWEVER, I do have to ask the question
Q. Is the team considering any additional exchanges?
A． No, not at this moment, maybe at later stage when time comes. As I mentioned before, the value of the project is always the aspect we give top priority to instead of the price. I’m never convinced by empty talk and vain promise, such as “go to moon” or “Lambo”. Instead, I’m a firm believer in the long-time benefits of honesty, integrity and working hard.
THEKEY Interview: Blockchain and TKY Tokens
THEKEY is currently based on the NEO blockchain, but has announced that they intend to launch their own. The roadmap states you have been working with Harbin Institute of Technology to develop a Blockchain Consensus Algorithm for almost 12 months now,
Q. When will the TKY blockchain reach mainnet status and TKY tokens exchanged?
A. THEKEY Mainnet was launched on November 30th, 2018, please check out THEKEY Mainnet Technical Report
We have already had working products in cities like Kaifeng. However, we cannot guarantee the time when TKY is being utilized in reality as the DEFI regulation and compliance is not achieve yet. And this is what we are focusing on for the moment.
THEKEY and Harbin Institute of Technology has jointly built a team to study the coexistence of multiple consensus mechanisms and the combination of democracy and centralization, to achieve blockchain applications featured with application scenarios, heterogeneous nodes power, the entire life cycle of business and verifiable results. Among this, the hybrid consensus mechanism and the significant foundation of DEFI regulation and compliance, has made a breakthrough in the first phase of the research, and has gained a patent of invention.
THEKEY has received an invitation for solicitation from a well-known international periodical and is currently working on publishing high level research papers.
Inspecting the official GitHub repository, there appears to be several references to the open source Hyperledger framework.
Q. Will the new blockchain be based on Hyperledger or any other current blockchain? What are the key features you are looking for in your own blockchain?
A. As we mentioned before, we’ll get off NEO, a Hyperledger based blockchain will be used for the transitional period. And eventually a safe and reliable technical base layer will be then used for our new chain. The key features of the new chain are as follows:
|1||Consensus mechanism||Proof of Consensus Algorithm;
Consensus routing mechanism.
|2||System performance optimization||5G edge computing blockchain hybrid mechanism;
Hybrid data governance mechanism;
Optimal node and resource guarantee scheme
|3||Identity data reliability guarantee||Rely on the government's existing data quality control system combined with blockchain technology non-repudiation, non-tampering and traceability to strengthen it supervision and audit functions to ensure the reliability of the system.|
|4||System security||Our own system security solution|
|5||Increased data carrying capacity||Hybrid data governance mechanism|
You’ve previously mentioned that TKY would be used to pay for services and other project expenses. The community has noticed many TKY tokens being sent to an exchange wallet.
Q. Can you explain what the large and regular payments from the team’s wallet to the exchange wallet are for?
A. It’s a stark period of time for every industry and project as you have noticed. The economy situation has changed dramatically since our ICO launched three years ago, which explains why surviving is what we think about now. Under such circumstances, the team has to cut back on spending significantly, and sell a part of tokens from previous storage.
The regular transfer of TKY are all used to support the technical development and research as well as the establishment of our ecosystem, which includes the regulators, the regulated party, the identity data supporter, and main stakeholders, etc. What we can assure you is that each and every coin goes for the project and is spent for the investor’s interest.
The team, including myself, have never taken any coin into our own pocket.
Catherine Li, the previous CEO of THEKEY, left the project suddenly almost 12 months ago.
Q. Did she receive TKY during her time at THEKEY and did she receive any TKY when she left the project?
Speaking of Catherine, I recall having a meal with her at 2am while we transited Shanghai airport. She had endless time to speak about the project and health care in general. I hope she is doing well with her next challenge.
Q. Do you still have contact with Catherine Li? Is she still involved in the health care industry?
A. Yes, we still keep in touch professionally and socially with each other since we were close colleagues and are still good friends. She made many great contributions to THEKEY during her tenure and we do hold gratitude for that. Catherine leaving THEKEY is nothing but normal personnel flow that happens every day and in many other companies. It is surprising to see it is still being brought up here.
Her academic and working background is more about healthcare data, and since THEKEY’s business model has shifted into regulation, compliance and blockchain technology, it’s no longer in her interest and capacity. She is right now working for a company that is focusing on healthcare. I personally feel happy for her that she can continue to shine in a field where she excels at.
Feel free to reach out to her as many of you may have her contact information. And I believe her answers of this question would be identical.
A dedicated TKY blockchain provides multiple technical benefits to an Identity Verification service. This includes payment methods (such as subscription, micro-transactions and rewards), non-repudiation of transactions and digital smart contracts.
Q. How will the TKY token be used in Identification Verification? Will it be a payment, like a bridge toll or something else?
A. This is rather a basic question which has been clearly explained in our whitepaper. Please check out THEKEY WHITE PAPER at Page 19 which is about THEKEY ecosystem and TKY token.
There is one more question around how the token will be used in the THEKEY ecosystem... The team had previously hinted at working with other ASEAN Governments for a blokcchain based Identification Verification solution.
Q. Is THEKEY going to be used outside of China? Will the international solution also be powered by TKY?
A. THEKEY will end up being an international project, and that’s what we have been working on over the past three years. For the moment due to the coronavirus outbreak, the international expansion has been largely affected.
THEKEY Interview: Roadmap and Vision
Q. THEKEY bluepaper shares many similarities with the Beijing Governments "blockchain-based programmable society" blueprint, like the 3-layer architecture "Infrastructure Layer - Service Layer - Application Layer". Was the THEKEY or Ebaonet involved in the construction of Beijing's blueprint?
A. No, we are not.
Q. What are Dr. King’s future prospects of the public THEKEY blockchain for China’s digital economy and the global digital economy?
A. The essence of blockchain is the distributed ledger. Blockchain technology has successfully solved trust issues between parties involved in transactions in the virtual world with its characteristics of decentralization, non-repudiation and non-tampering. Due to the profound significance of “trustworthiness” to the development of the Internet, digital economy and smart finance, the past years have witnessed the rapid adoption of blockchain technology in various industries across the globe. And a large number of representative and thriving blockchain projects such as Bitcoin and Ethereum has proved conclusively blockchain technology’s value, practicability and feasibility in terms of theory and practice. Nowadays extensive experimental researches of the technology being carried out in many sectors owes the inspiration to success of these world-leading projects. Yet we need to realize the fact that blockchain technology did not address issues of regulation and compliance in a decentralized environment on account of its features:
- First, decentralization of blockchain management;
- Second, diversity of the identity of blockchain and DAPP issuers, and
- Third, anonymity of blockchain and DAPP user transactions.
The above-mentioned blockchain features cut blockchain issuers, DAPP issuers and transactions between them loose from traditional centralized regulation and compliance system and it fundamentally smashed human’s control of financial and social risks. Owing to blockchain technology’s symbiosis relationship with digital assets, since Bitcoin was released especially after 2017, Blockchain projects faced reported frauds constantly and people have witnessed how these swindles in the industry put the whole society in jeopardy. To be fair, the higher the expectation for the benefits that blockchain technology could bring to the economy, the more worried people are about the technology’s risks. We asserted that major breakthroughs of blockchain technology and digital finance will not be achieved unless regulation systems will be properly reshaped in the DEFI environment. Against the above background, our ultimate target is to provide technical support for the regulation and compliance of blockchain through decentralized identity management, thereby promoting the rapid, healthy and sustainable development of the digital economy.
If something cannot be regulated and controlled it cannot be, for sure, widely used and therefore cannot be called a real industrial revolution. The regulation and compliance platform of THEKEY will bring profound influence to the digital economy of not only China but the rest of the world since it will solve the bottleneck of blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies. Blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies will enter into the mainstream track only when regulation and compliance issues are solved, which will lead to the next industrial revolution. When the day comes, please do call me and remember me as Dr. Yidong King and I am quite sure the day will come.
Q. What is the current mood or sentiment of the Chinese Government groups to get TKY data platform live and operating on nation wide?
A. In the past year we have mainly cooperated with Chinese government through the National Pilot Project of Key Applications in Fintech jointly appointed by six ministries of the Chinese government, namely People's Bank of China, Development and Reform Commission, Ministry of Science and Technology, Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security, and Ministry of Health. The pilot project, through the launch of “Healthcare Mobile Payment” and “Pensioner Survival Certification with Big Data Technology” in Jiangsu Province, has further proved the importance and feasibility of THEKEY BDMI technology. Up to now we have made three major achievements through the Project:
- “Healthcare Mobile Payment” and “Pensioner Survival Certification with Big Data Technology” has been finished and handed over to the relevant ministries;
- We have acquired 19 patents and 11 copyrights during the process;
- On the basis of the Pilot Project, the Chinese government will establish a National Fintech Innovation Laboratory together with THEKEY as the leading partner. The Laboratory will continue the research on the application of BDMI technology in Fintech field.
The Project will be closed by the coming October.
Through the above-mentioned Project both THEKEY and the government have realized that, BDMI is the critical underlying technology of the safe share and exchange of highly confidential and sensitive government and/or individual data more importantly, BDMIM based on BDMI is the indispensable technology for decentralized finance (DEFI) and blockchain regulation, which we believe is the key for the further development of blockchain technology as well as digital economy. BDMIM stands for Blockchain Based Dynamic and Multi-dimension Identity Management, including identity registration, identity check, identity verification, identity tracking and transaction evaluation.
Inspired by the discovery, a top Chinese regulatory authority has decided to purchase service from THEKEY for further test. More details will be published when the time is right. We firmly believe THEKEY will be an indispensable part of the digital economy of China and the rest of the world.
Q. Can you provide an update on the progress of milestones on the roadmap provided in the Blue Paper?
A. Below is the set milestone in the Bluepaper:
Below table is the current status of the milestones.
|Oct. 2019-Oct. 2020||Fintech pilot project||Ongoing and to be closed in October|
|Nov. 2019-Jan. 2020||Application in Digital Banks||Cancelled|
|Nov. 2019-Jan. 2020||Research on Consensus Algorithm||Completed|
|Nov. 2019-Jan. 2020||Multi-party Secure Calculation Research||Completed|
|Dec. 2019-Feb. 2020||Registration approved by Cyberspace Administration||Ongoing|
Q. What is the status on RIW Real ID wallet?
A. RIW stands for Real Identity Wallet. The solution is consisted of three parts:
- Enhanced Private Key Management; and
- Dynamic Anonymous Transaction Interlayer.
We were granted of two patents of invention and one copyright for the first two parts, and we are still working on the third part.
Q. Do you believe the team are interacting with the community enough? What can be done to improve the communication between the team and the community?
A. First of all, I do feel sorry for the community’s concern for the communication as I focus more on the technical development and crisis management during the pandemic. We’ll make the updates of milestones hit and the progress achieved more regularly through our official channels. We do value the community management in great deal and we’ll continue to provide constant and dedicated communication with the community.
THEKEY Interview: Partnerships
Q. Is there any progress with the Bank of China? How does this partnership benefit THEKEY
A. First off, I need to point out that Bank of China and People's Bank of China are two completely different institutions. Bank of China is a commercial bank that performs similar functions as Bank of America. While People's Bank of China (PBC or PBOC) is a policy bank and the top financial regulatory institution in China that is similar to the Federal Reserve System in the U.S. And we are in cooperation with PBOC.
Our collaboration with the People’s Bank of China is as significant as the cooperation between Facebook and the Federal Reserve System of the U.S. And we firmly believe that the approval and support from the regulatory authorities of the country is an indispensable factor for breakthroughs in the blockchain industry.
As mentioned before, we’ve made great achievements during the cooperation with the six ministries, including the People's Bank of China.
I was lucky enough to witness the progress of the pilot in Jiaxing.
Q. How is this pilot going today? Has THEKEY expanded their pilot in any other cities?
A. As a matter of fact, THEKEY has shifted emphasis from pilot expanding to the cooperation with financial regulatory authorities of the central government. And now it is not the right moment to disclose details about that.
Q. If Chinese cryptocurrency regulations do not change in the foreseeable future, what will THEKEY do to ensure TKY holders remain committed to the project?
A. I have never been more convinced that digital economy will not be far away and China will be a leading force in digital economy, just as McKinsey Global Institute predicted, “China is already more digitized than many observers appreciate and has the potential to set the world’s digital frontier in coming decades.” As previously mentioned, the bottleneck of digital economy is DEFI regulation and compliance issues, which is what THEKEY has been aggressively working on with Chinese regulatory authorities. And I hold stronger confidence in TKY than ever before.
THEKEY Interview: Wrap up
I'd like to thank Dr King for his time and responses. These interactions mean a lot to the community and I hope we get to hear more exciting news from you soon.
If you haven't read my Interview with Dr King, please view THEKEY Interview.
The author previously provided some assistance with the community engagement of this project for English speakers.
The author participated in the public pre-distribution phase and continues to hold a small amount of TKY.
No payments or favours were sought for this article.
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