March 15, 2018
5miles Launches CyberMiles Blockchain Project To Decentralize The Online Marketplace
Garage sale tech needs blockchain. At least, that’s the theory from peer-to-peer marketplace 5miles. If you don’t know 5miles, it’s a web and app based virtual yard sale marketplace, kind of like Craigslist but designed like an actual app and not a page from the middle of the phone book. Plus, 5miles lacks the creep factor and casual encounter nature of Craigslist. We’re not here to compare. We’re here to talk about 5miles move into blockchain through its 5xlab and the creation of CyberMiles.
5miles is not a new service or concept. Unless you are used to kilometers. Then it’s 8.04672 kilometers. 5miles was founded by Dr. Lucas Lu, who holds a Ph.D. in Particle Physics and worked at CERN, where he participated in theoretical and experimental research of Higgs Particle. So naturally, he started a garage sale and apartment hunting website. Regardless, the old adage of “find a need and fill it” holds true, and 5miles currently boasts more than 12 million buyers and sellers all over the United States since the inception of the service three years ago.
The CyberMiles protocol is being led by chief scientist Dr. Michael Yuan, another very qualified human, with a Ph.D in Astrophysics. An expert on enterprise and mobile software, he is the author of five books on software development and was an active code committer in large open source projects such as Firefox, Fedora, and JBoss. CyberMiles is being developed for use within the 5miles application, to wrap blockchain technology around selling your grandmother’s old rocking chair, which just needs some new varnish and a plate of biscuits and gravy to be as good as new.
CyberMiles is being designed to “empower the decentralization of online marketplaces”, because slogans are fantastic. The gist is that CyberMiles seeks to shake up peer-to-peer marketplace shopping by making digital transactions between consumers and businesses the norm, instead of hoping that weird dude buying your old sheets and toaster oven isn’t giving you a bum check, or having to use Paypal or Venmo. CyberMiles will focus on various real-world marketplace and commercial applications utilizing smart contracts, including local buy and sell marketplaces, e-commerce and online auctions.
Since it is being optimized for business and marketplace applications, CyberMiles is being developed as a “fat protocol” consisting of a blockchain-based “virtual machine” and defined modules of middle-layer software stacks operating outside the chain, which will support decentralized processes governed by smart contracts implemented on the network. What all that means is that the CyberMiles technology will be used for underlying smart contracts, supporting cryptocurrencies to facilitate the execution of the smart contracts and implementing the contracts across the most popular 5miles categories initially.
“Compared to real-world platforms like eBay and Uber, our modular solutions based on smart-contracts will leverage the decentralized nature of blockchain technology to strike the optimal balance between efficiency and compatibility,” says Yuan via press release. “This, in turn, will make CyberMiles the preferred infrastructure for commercial applications of blockchain technology.”
Right. So to simplify for the guy trying to buy a new used couch off of 5miles, it means that he can pay via cryptocurrency utilizing the CyberMiles blockchain token system. It means that payments can be accepted via cryptocurrency and the technology will exist that enables all that. The hope is that CyberMiles as a blockchain technology specifically developed for online marketplaces and e-commerce will become available outside of just 5miles as more smart-contract modules are developed. It sure beats the eternal sadness of a bounced check.