Analyzing <Horizen as a “home for ZK” and an enduring utility for $ZEN. By Rob Viglione

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I was looking forward for updates regarding Horizen EON, implemented ZK solutions and the "New Horizen" approach towards a more efficient blockchain. Rob's article came to answer all my questions, and Horizen as a “home for ZK” and an enduring utility for $ZEN was full of alpha and more info on how the new vision will improve the current crypto status quo! 

Robert Viglione is the Horizen co-founder, and one of those big crypto people that I admire. He is a former physicist and mathematician with experience working on Bitshares, BlockPay, Zclassic, Seasteading, and Bitgate.

The Horizen proof verification network is known for the cost-effective settlement for modular blockchain stacks, one that is enabling Layer 2 adoption to grow exponentially. Why is this important? Because 2024 is hyping with ZK Dapp, and the modular blockchains are more important then ever.

This is why Rob had to brings a new take on the classic vision, one based on many years devoted to the industry. Horizen was launched in 2017 as one of the first ZK projects in crypto, adding a different spin to being a privacy coin by integrating master nodes and some new ideas on governance. The vision was to be a hub for privacy-oriented projects. 

What changed? The flagship coin of Horizen, $ZEN ceased operating as a privacy coin this year. Further, the entire Web3 stack has upgraded in a really great way over the years since Horizen launched. Horizen EON changed everything! 

Will ZEN compete as a general cryptocurrency in the modern world that focuses on interoperability? Horizen knew that ZK would become a big part of Web3, and the ecosystem is perfectly positioned to make Horizen a key “home for ZK” in many ways.

The “New Horizen” approach comes as a super efficient proof verification layer and is the natural evolution from Zendoo. New Horizen is the perfect foundation onto which EON can move to become that hub for ZK projects that was always envisioned. I''ve been exploring most Ethereum layer2s and modular chains like Celestia... and EON brings even more benefits and even more opportunities. Why? Because Celestia provides data availability, while Horizen provides proof verification! 

The Horizen chain become EVM-compatible through the EON sidechain, and developers are now able to build fully customizable chains, including consensus, speed, privacy and crypto-economies.  Spooky Swap, LayerZero, PYTH, Metamask, Band, Ankr, Tatum, ThirdWeb and many more top crypto brands are already available on Horizen EON!

We constantly talk about utility and tokenomics when we analyze a project and it's token, as the tokenomics must match the product's function. The ZEN tokenomics were established to fund security via PoW mining, a treasury for community-driven discretionary incentives, and a node system to provide a lot of replicated versions of the blockchain.

The beauty of innovation is powering the "New Horizen" idea, as the world wants something to invest in it or something to use. The market wants a ZK proof verification chain and this will be delivered by Horizen. The ZK proof verification environment is competitive and Horizen had to innovate. Was hard to compete against new projects with a token whose distribution was determined in 2017 to work as a privacy coin and with two-thirds of it's tokens already mined. 

The debate whether the tokenomics should change to match the new purpose wasn't fully settled. The idea of changing the supply, emission schedule, or allocations of $ZEN shocked some. You can't change a game during play and the tokenomics are supposed to be immutable.

"Unfortunately for everyone, many jumped to crazy conclusions too quickly. We can both accept the reality that $ZEN’s 2017 tokenomics are not what’s needed for a new modular blockchain to be successful; and we can also keep it at the heart of our ecosystem in a way that retains and grows value over time. Further, I believe that the total ecosystem value for Horizen can massively scale by rearranging things in a way that makes sense."

This sentence sums up the whole idea, as the Cryptoverse changed a lot since 2017. Everything happens at 10x speed and the old tokenomics can't power a new modular blockchain. My first question was ... what's the path forward? Luckily Rob has something in mind! 

ZEN is one of the last fair launch coins of its generation with any kind of relevancy, and Horizen should keep it. However, the community should consider rearranging the ecosystem so $ZEN is placed where it matters most — in driving TVL and incentives for ZK projects on EON 

I love EON and already supplied liquidity, constantly using community-created Dapps and started to expand my NFT collection. The ZK proof verifiers will optimize EON, focusing development on smart contract precompiles, core functionality, and tools for ZK applications and rollups.

What to expect in 2024? The EON migration to New Horizen, and a metamorphose into a state-of-the-art and performant EVM connected to the Proof Verification Substrate layer. Automatically, this move means that "Old Horizen" $ZEN will retire and will port over on the new version of EON. This move will bring hundreds of millions to EON.

$ZEN will continue to be the gas of EON and the governance token of what can become a much bigger treasury devoted to ZK applications because 60% of its supply isn’t needed to pay for security. The next move could be the adoption of a new token for the proof verification layer, one that will provide the ZEN holders with a significant allocation.

I like the new ideas and I will always embrace the change. I am looking forward to have my say on snapshots, and be part of something bigger. I am a huge $ZEN supporter for years, and I want to see Horizen on top of the crypto-pyramid. 

I want to see the repositioning of $ZEN as a token on EON, and hundreds of millions of dollars of value pouring onto the ecosystem’s core EVM. This bold new approach will unlock tremendous value for ZK projects by converting security budget into incentives. Read Rob's full article on Medium:

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