Hedera Hashgraph is a public distributed ledger for building decentralized applications. The Hedera hashgraph platform will offer a distributed public ledger that enables anyone to easily develop globally decentralized applications. Developers can build secure, fair, blazing-fast decentralized applications on top of the Hedera hashgraph platform. The native cryptocurrency of the Hedera Hashgraph system is HBAR (HBAR).
It was founded by Dr. Leemon Baird.
In 2015 – 2016, Leemon Baird developed the breakthrough innovation now called hashgraph. A few months later, Baird and his longtime friend and business partner, Mance Harmon, form Swirlds, Inc. (a portmanteau of “shared worlds”) to develop proofs of concept, commercialize hashgraph for private implementations, and battle-test it in permissioned environments. Their larger and longer-term vision is to use hashgraph to enable a truly decentralized, fast, fair, and secure public distributed ledger that could achieve mainstream adoption and serve as the “trust layer of the Internet”.
Hedera Hashgraph claims to be capable of processing 10,000 cryptocurrency transactions per second (TPS). Hedera’s white paper suggests that the number of transactions that Hashgraph can process is only limited by the bandwidth available to each node on the network. However, analysts have argued that bandwidth is not the bottleneck on the speed at which transactions are processed by the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM).
Further, as Hedera is cloning the EVM to underpin its smart contracts service, Hedera fails to address the bottlenecks limiting the speed of Ethereum transactions — which instead comprise the inefficiencies inherent to the EVM and solid-state devices.
Hedera is split evenly to the Councils. The people of the Council serve a limited term of control so as to ensure equality. The Hedera network is governed by the Hedera Governing Council, a rotating group of high-profile, leading global organizations that span across multiple industries and geographies. The primary responsibilities of Council members are to participate in the governance of the Hedera network and (ii) host and maintain a node on the Hedera network. Council members contribute their expertise and experience in Council deliberations and decision-making relating to software updates, Hedera Treasury management, network pricing, regulatory compliance, and other key governance matters.
Hashgraph is not a blockchain in the sense that it’s built on a chain of blocks. It’s best to imagine it as a graph, whereby the speed of verifying transactions goes up as more transactions are added to the network. The name for the technology it’s based on is, in fact, known as a DAG , short for Directed Acyclic Graph.
This technology is designed to help Hedera Hashgraph achieve more than 100,000 transactions per second, making it a true competitor to Visa and other mass-market payment systems.
The Hedera network currently performs 6.5 million transactions per day with an average transaction time of 5 seconds—easily surpassing Ethereum’s 1.2 million and Bitcoin’s 300,000 transactions put together.
How does Hedera Hashgraph work?
A council of 19 multinational corporations from around the world govern the platform and the software that will run on millions of nodes globally. To reach consensus, instead of mining, nodes on the Hashgraph “gossip” with each other, comparing notes on the transaction history of the network.
As the nodes gossip, they select a few “famous witnesses.” Each witness is an event or a transaction and they become famous because they are communicated to the nodes early in the process. The chosen nodes then compare the gossip about these famous witnesses in the majority of nodes.
Unlike blockchains, a hashgraph does not use miners to validate its transactions. Instead, it uses a “gossip about gossip” protocol to create directed acyclic graphs for time-sequencing transactions without bundling them into blocks.
Leemon Baird – Co-founder and Chief Scientist
Leemon is the inventor of the hashgraph distributed consensus algorithm, and is the Co-founder and Chief Scientist of Hedera. With over 20 years of technology and startup experience, he has held positions as a Professor of Computer Science at the US Air Force Academy and as a senior scientist in several labs. He has been the Co-Founder of several startups, including two identity-related startups, both of which were acquired. Leemon received his PhD in Computer Science from Carnegie Mellon University and has multiple patents and publications in peer-reviewed journals and conferences in computer security, machine learning, and mathematics.
Mance Harmon – Co-founder and CEO
Mance is an experienced technology executive and entrepreneur with more than 20 years of strategic leadership experience in multi-national corporations, government agencies, and high-tech startups, and is Co-founder and CEO of Hedera. His prior experience includes serving as the Head of Architecture and Labs at Ping Identity, Founder and CEO of two tech startups, the senior executive for product security at a $1.7B revenue organization, Program Manager for a very-large scale software program for the Missile Defense Agency, the Course Director for Cybersecurity at the US Air Force Academy, and research scientist in Machine Learning at Wright Laboratory. Mance received a MS in Computer Science from the University of Massachusetts and a BS in Computer Science from Mississippi State University.
Natalie Grunfeld Furman – General Counsel
Natalie was previously a senior associate at Paul Hastings LLP, where her practice focused on intellectual property, unfair competition, and rights of privacy and publicity, and is the General Counsel for Hedera. Prior to law school, she started her career in Silicon Valley, providing strategic advice to high tech startups. She was Director of Strategy and Business Development at an online group communication startup acquired by Yahoo! Inc. and Director of Business Development for a technology startup developing a global collaborative supply chain platform. Natalie received her BA in Anthropology with honors from Stanford University and her JD from Columbia University School of Law.