Introduction: What is Helix about?
Disclaimer: I am invested in mHLX and I know the founders + team since years from my time in Berlin. I was not getting any compensation for this review.
Today I am reviewing the HELIX project. HELIX is based in Berlin and works since 2017 on their own version of the tangle-technology originating from the IOTA-tech-stack. The tangle-technology promises greater scalability than Bitcoin or even Ethereum, the latter two being the current leaders. Tangle, the technical core of IOTA which Helix is forked from, removes blocks and distributes them in form of directed graphs over the network.
Helix’ approach is slightly different than the one of IOTA. They are focussing solely on tamper-proof timestamps and their implementation in various business processes like payment processes with the company Payfessional, which just joined the Helix ecosystem as a so-called Catalyst.
Tailored for automating collaboration at the enterprise level, Helix is a highly scalable streaming data exchange layer with trust-minimized timestamping.
The Helix Network provides:
1) a decentralized and fully open infrastructure
2) transparent privacy & access rules enforced by cryptography and their consensus algorithm
3) [micro-]transactions and data streams in real-time.
Helix is lead by the two founders Marcel (Managing Director) and Oliver Fohrmann (Software Engineer, Bioinformatics). The CSO is Dimitrii Zhelezov (PhD Mathematics), the mastermind behind this ambitious tangle-project. You can find additional information on the team and advisors here.
Main Components of the HelixNetwork
1) HelixMesh, a slim protocol in development.“Slim” protocols offers more freedom in design choices and are therefore extremely well aligned with emerging Industry X.0 applications.
2 ) HelixCatalysts offer blockchain services to their clients without limiting their business to crypto-only payments. Transactions are handled by a dedicated commercial entity running a full-node for integration instead of a random network node. This trust model enables one to reach consensus on data, without having to share the actual data, providing immutability, while preserving privacy.
What is the Tangle-Technology?
The Tangle is based on a certain type of directed graph that contains transactions. Directed graphs are often used by computer scientists and are defined as a collection of vertices (squares) connected by edges (arrows). This is an example of a directed graph:
The tangle, is a special type of directed graph capable of holding transactions. In a graph, each transaction would be represented by a vertex. Each time a new transaction takes place, it selects two existing transactions to be approved, this adds two new rows to the graph.
What are the use cases for Helix?
“Mining” businesses in traditional blockchains are outdated, inefficient, and in addition, they waste enormous amounts of energy; in particular with regard to global warming this does not seem like a sustainable solution.
Helix wants to encourage miners to evolve into service providers that bring value on top of the transaction relay, be it through network validation or by offering value-added services such as “blockchain as a service” to their customers.
Helix calls these service providers “Catalysts”. By joining the global network infrastructure as an “integrator”, they will be able to create new businesses with innovative operational models and revenue streams. An Integrator will have to preserve its mHLX stake to maintain access to the network.
With Helix Catalysts, they provide a DLT gateway for traditional businesses, and also leverage the power of collaboratively owned infrastructure and data streams for new businesses.
In addition, the interoperability of Helix means that you can connect to any other network too. This plus the fact that businesses of any industry could use Helix is a great indicator for the potential increase of use over the next years.
What is the difference to IOTA?
Helix forked IOTA originally but since then reworked the code. The current code-base is about 50% of IOTA’s original code and 50% of completely rewritten components. The core components the team has reworked includes:
Cryptography: All trinary parts are replaced with binary
Network layer: A more efficient way of dispatching and delivering transactions to the peers
Consensus layer: the coordinator (which was not open-sourced back then anyway) was replaced by a distributed quorum of independent validators
DAG layer: while the coordinator milestones can approve only two transactions, which leads to a significant amount of orphaned txs and very long confirmation rates, we use a Merkle Tree approach that can efficiently handle tps spikes without any additional delays.
The key advantages are obvious: They offer a working solution that is faster and more decentralized.
How is HELIX funded?
Since its inception, Helix has been financed through private investments. Initially, Helix has been financed by friends and family, in 2017, when the company was established. All the following years the fundraising continued including various private as well as institutional investors in multiple rounds.
A public sale via an Initial Coin Offering (ICO) was considered in 2018 but skipped due to the market conditions at that time – so it never happened!
The first listing took place on May 20th, 2020 on BitMart.
In the meantime, Helix is evaluating alternative forms of global coin distribution models where the public could be involved in schemes similar to Bounty Programs or Air Drops to earn mHLX coins by contributing to the Helix ecosystem.
tl;dr: mHLX belongs on your watchlist!
If you are looking for a project with strong fundamentals, you should keep an eye on mHLX. The market cap is around ~2 Million USD at the time of writing (~9 sat/mHLX). Compared to other projects out there which don’t even have their tech ready and mainnet going, it is an absolute steal.
You can find more information on: