Ravencoin was launched on January 3, 2018 as a fork of Bitcoin that specializes in the secure and unique tokenization of assets. The protocol takes advantage of peer-to-peer decentralized network technology that is "designed to efficiently handle one specific function: the transfer of assets from one party to another" (source). Therefore, Ravencoin is described as being an "asset aware protocol."
Ravencoin was designed from the start to achieve ideals of decentralization, security, and authenticity. The protocol is 100% public and transparent, using an open source design that allows a broad global community to contribute to its development, with no central controlling leadership. In keeping with these ideals, Ravencoin was created with no pre-mine, no ICO, and no masternodes. Instead, it was launched fairly to all participating miners. The coin, therefore, was not held in large quantities by a select few elite, instead being fairly distributed from the start to miners securing the network.
Ravencoin specializes in the creation and transfer of unique assets via blockchain technology. Issued tokens on the Ravencoin protocol can have properties assigned to them such as unique names or designated quantities, and can be uniquely individualized as collectibles or securities. Due to this technology, assets created on Ravencoin are provably one of a kind, with each token being capable of representing a real world physical or digital asset. In addition, the Ravencoin protocol allows for built-in messaging capabilities and stakeholder voting via tokens.
The X16R algorithm on which the Ravencoin protocol operates provides a unique solution to the problems of ASIC mining and potential centralization. The network uses a randomized order of 16 algorithms for mining. This prevents ASIC dominance by making custom-ASIC design much more difficult to achieve. The constant disruption in hashing algorithms prevents ASICs from honing in on a particular algorithm for the purpose of high-powered mining. The X16R algorithm’s random order also reduces the threat of 51% attacks while allowing Ravencoin to be mined on a broad range of computers, aiding in decentralization of the network.