Frederick Blockchain Startup Aims to Enable Censorship-Resistant Finance on a Global Scale

Tellor’s oracle allows for the decentralization of data providers on blockchain smart contracts

Andrew Paulochik

FREDERICK, Md.— Tellor, a Frederick based blockchain startup, is working to improve upon Ethereum, the world’s leading programmable blockchain, by utilizing proof-of-work miners to complete smart contracts.

Tellor, a member of technology-focused incubator and accelerator Frederick Innovative Technology Center, Inc. (FITCI) in Frederick’s ROOT Building, has amassed 3,000 total members across social media and communication channels. In 2019, they received an investment from Binance Labs, as well as a grant from the global blockchain software company ConsenSys to enable Tellor to further build out from Ethereum’s ecosystem.

Ethereum’s most utilized programs are finance-related, termed Decentralized Finance (DeFi). DeFi hosts transactions on a blockchain acting as a public ledger that stores information about transactions including the date, time, and amount transferred. This shows who participates in transactions allowing anyone to see what has taken place on the blockchain—creating a transparent and censorship-resistant financial system. Smart contracts can be written on top of blockchains that allow reliable financial transactions (i.e. bets) without third parties, saving time, conflict, and money.

Tellor has pointed out that while DeFi is censorship resistant, blockchains are disconnected from the real world. The finance-related programs and their smart contracts on Ethereum cannot access information that is not already on the chain, mainly the real time price of cryptocurrency at any given moment. This forms a data availability issue—programs need outside data providers to supply data that allow them to properly execute transactions.

Until now, the decentralized smart contracts had to rely on data coming from a centralized source. Tellor is an oracle (a provider of off-chain data) that decentralizes the data supply for Ethereum applications. Tellor does this by incentivizing a worldwide network of people to compete to update the data points on the chains. The incentive is created by Tellor’s own token, 1000 of which are required as a deposit and used as insurance that the numbers input by the competitors are correct. The competition is through Proof-of-Work (PoW) contracts. The system requires that miners compete to solve a difficult puzzle in order to earn the right to input the requested data on the blockchain. PoW contracts ensure that the system remains decentralized and serve as a mechanism that keeps the system secure.

The Tellor team includes CEO Brenda Loya, CTO Nicholas Fett, and CSO Michael Zemrose. “Brenda, Nick, and I, are a core-values focused team and that’s what lead us to build what we are building, which plays a key role in enabling unstoppable applications. DeFi is only the beginning. Bridging the real world to decentralized autonomous networks, i.e. blockchains, has very powerful possibilities,” Co-Founder Zemrose said of their work.

Tellor’s oracle currently works on Ethereum while the team is actively building out alternate chain solutions for “Version 2” of Tellor. This will allow Tellor to maintain a decentralized system that works on a variety of blockchains across the globe, filling a crucial gap in the cryptocurrency and smart contract market and paving the way for a truly decentralized and censorship-resistant financial system.

“The work that Tellor is doing is very important for the tech and cryptocurrency markets. We are incredibly proud to call them a FITCI member and we can’t wait to see where their accomplishments take them,” Kathie Callahan Brady, CEO and President of FITCI, said about the company.

For more information visit https://www.tellor.io.