Cardano Milestones: Technical Capabilities, Features and Potential

Cardano is a third-generation blockchain platform that aims to revolutionize the way we interact with decentralized systems. Since its launch in 2017, Cardano milestones have steadily shown the network has been gaining ground as one of the most promising blockchain projects in the space. This is due, in large part, to the platform’s unique features, technical innovations, and ambitious goals.

Cardano is a research-driven project that emphasizes peer-reviewed scientific approaches to solving some of the most pressing challenges facing the blockchain industry. The project was founded by Charles Hoskinson, a former co-founder of Ethereum, and is managed by IOHK, a leading blockchain research and development company. Over the years, Cardano has achieved several major milestones, which have contributed to its growth and development. 

This article aims to provide a comprehensive list of historical events for Cardano since its launch, highlighting the key moments that have shaped the platform’s journey so far. As we explore these events, we’ll gain a deeper understanding of Cardano’s technical capabilities, unique features, and future potential. From the formation of IOHK to the launch of the Cardano mainnet, and the rollout of the Goguen upgrade, this article will cover it all.


Cardano’s tokenomics refer to the economic principles that underlie the Cardano cryptocurrency, including its supply, governance, and distribution,. Cardano has a maximum supply of 45 billion ADA tokens, but only 35 billion of these tokens are currently in circulation as of early 2023. Unlike some other cryptocurrencies, Cardano’s supply is not fixed but instead uses a model of controlled inflation to gradually increase the supply over time. This inflation rate is intended to decrease over time as the network matures and adoption increases, with the aim of maintaining a stable and sustainable value for the cryptocurrency. 

Like other decentralized cryptocurrencies, Cardano is governed by its community of users, developers, and stakeholders. Cardano uses a unique governance system called Voltaire, which is designed to allow ADA holders to propose and vote on changes to the network, such as software upgrades or changes to the network’s rules. 

Cardano’s distribution is primarily through mining, which involves using computer hardware to validate transactions on the network and add new blocks to the blockchain.

Early Days and Byron Era (2015-2017)

The roots of Cardano can be traced back to 2015 when IOHK was founded. IOHK, short for Input Output Hong Kong, is a research and development company that specializes in blockchain technology. The company was co-founded by Charles Hoskinson, who previously co-founded Ethereum, and Jeremy Wood, an experienced software engineer.

After establishing IOHK, the team began work on Cardano, a blockchain platform that aimed to overcome the limitations of previous blockchain projects. In 2016, the first codebase for Cardano was released, and development began in earnest.

Cardano launched its initial coin offering (ICO) in 2017, which raised approximately $62 million in less than 24 hours. The ICO was the first funding round for Cardano and helped to kickstart the development of the platform.

The Byron era was the first phase of development for the Cardano blockchain, running from September 2017 to July 2020. This era was focused on laying the foundation for Cardano as a secure and scalable blockchain platform, with a particular emphasis on establishing a solid infrastructure for the network.

During the Byron era, Cardano’s mainnet was launched, allowing users to begin trading and using the platform’s native cryptocurrency, ADA. One of the key innovations introduced by Cardano during this era was the Ouroboros consensus algorithm. Ouroboros is a proof-of-stake (PoS) consensus algorithm that allows for secure, efficient, and sustainable blockchain operations. Unlike proof-of-work (PoW) algorithms used by platforms like Bitcoin, which require vast amounts of computing power and energy, PoS algorithms are designed to be much more energy-efficient and scalable.

In 2017, Cardano’s testnet was launched, providing developers with a safe environment to test and experiment with the platform. This was a significant milestone, as it paved the way for the launch of the Cardano mainnet later that year.

Also in 2017, Cardano’s first whitepaper was released, providing a detailed technical overview of the platform’s architecture, consensus algorithm, and other key features. The whitepaper helped to establish Cardano’s reputation as a highly technical and research-driven project, focused on building a blockchain platform that is secure, scalable, and sustainable.

These early days of Cardano laid the foundation for what was to come, providing the team with a clear roadmap for building a blockchain platform that could address the shortcomings of previous projects.

Shelley Era (2018-2020)

In September 2017, Cardano launched its mainnet, marking the beginning of the Shelley era. The Shelley era was named after Percy Bysshe Shelley, a poet who wrote extensively on the themes of social justice and human freedom. The name was chosen to reflect Cardano’s commitment to building a decentralized, democratic, and sustainable blockchain platform.

The Shelley upgrade introduced several major features to Cardano, including the ability to stake and delegate ADA (Cardano’s native cryptocurrency), and the introduction of stake pools. Stake pools are groups of validators that work together to produce blocks on the blockchain, increasing the efficiency and security of the network.

One of the key goals of the Shelley upgrade was to increase the decentralization of the Cardano network. Prior to the Shelley era, Cardano was largely controlled by IOHK, which operated the majority of the network’s stake. With the Shelley upgrade, IOHK began to gradually transfer control of the network to the community, allowing anyone to become a stakeholder and participate in the network’s governance.

The Shelley era also saw the introduction of several new features, including support for multi-asset transactions, which allows users to create and exchange custom tokens on the Cardano blockchain. This feature has opened up new possibilities for decentralized finance, gaming, and other use cases, and has helped to position Cardano as a serious contender in the rapidly growing blockchain ecosystem.

Another important development during the Shelley era was Cardano’s partnership with the Ethiopian government. In 2018, IOHK signed a memorandum of understanding with the Ethiopian government to explore the use of blockchain technology in building a new identity system for the country. This partnership has since expanded to include other initiatives, such as a blockchain-based voting system, which aims to increase transparency and trust in the country’s electoral processes. The Shelley era was a period of significant growth and development for Cardano, as the platform began to mature and establish itself as a leading blockchain project.

Goguen Era (2021)

The Goguen era of Cardano began in 2021 with the rollout of the Goguen upgrade, which introduced smart contract functionality to the platform. Smart contracts are self-executing computer programs that allow for the automation of complex processes and transactions. With the introduction of smart contracts, Cardano has become a truly versatile blockchain platform, capable of supporting a wide range of use cases and applications.

One of the key features of the Goguen upgrade is the ability to create and execute smart contracts using Plutus, a programming language that is specifically designed for building smart contracts on Cardano. Plutus is a functional programming language that is based on Haskell, a popular programming language used in academia and industry. Plutus makes it easier for developers to write secure and efficient smart contracts, reducing the risk of bugs and vulnerabilities that can be exploited by bad actors.

In addition to smart contract functionality, the Goguen era has also seen the introduction of native tokens on the Cardano blockchain. Native tokens are tokens that are created natively on the Cardano blockchain, rather than being implemented through smart contracts. This feature has made it easier for developers to create custom tokens on the Cardano blockchain, enabling a wide range of use cases, including gaming, art, and social tokens.

The Goguen era has also seen the integration of several decentralized finances (DeFi) protocols, including stablecoins and decentralized exchanges. This has made it possible to build decentralized financial applications on the Cardano blockchain, allowing users to access a wide range of financial services without relying on centralized intermediaries.

Another important development during the Goguen era has been the launch of Project Catalyst, a community-driven innovation fund that allows Cardano stakeholders to propose and vote on new initiatives for the platform. Project Catalyst has helped to foster a vibrant and engaged community of developers, entrepreneurs, and enthusiasts, all working together to build the future of Cardano.

Basho Era (2022)

The Basho era is the next phase of development for the Cardano blockchain. It is named after Matsuo Basho, a Japanese poet who is widely regarded as one of the greatest masters of haiku, a form of Japanese poetry.

The Basho era will focus on improving the scalability, interoperability, and sustainability of the Cardano blockchain, with the goal of making it more efficient, adaptable, and user-friendly. Some of the key features that are expected to be introduced during the Basho era include sharding, sidechains, and improvements to the consensus algorithm.

Sharding is a technique for partitioning a blockchain into smaller, more manageable pieces called “shards.” Each shard is a separate blockchain that is connected to the main blockchain, allowing for greater scalability and faster transaction processing. Sharding is expected to be a critical feature for the long-term growth and sustainability of the Cardano blockchain, as it will enable the network to handle a larger volume of transactions and support a wider range of use cases.

Another key feature of the Basho era is the introduction of sidechains, which are separate blockchains that can be used to process specific types of transactions or applications. Sidechains can be customized to meet the needs of specific use cases, providing greater flexibility and adaptability to the Cardano blockchain. This will enable developers to build specialized applications and services on the Cardano platform, creating new opportunities for innovation and growth.

In addition to sharding and sidechains, the Basho era is expected to bring further improvements to the Ouroboros consensus algorithm, making it more efficient and secure. The exact details of these improvements have not yet been announced, but they are expected to further enhance the sustainability and security of the Cardano blockchain.

Voltaire Era (Coming Soon!)

Cardano’s Voltaire era is a planned phase in the development of the Cardano blockchain platform, which aims to introduce a number of features to enable the platform to achieve full decentralization and become a self-sustaining system. The era is named after the French philosopher and writer Voltaire, who was known for his advocacy of freedom of thought, expression, and democracy.

The Voltaire era is the final phase of Cardano’s development roadmap and is focused on providing the platform with a complete governance system, enabling the community to have a greater say in the future of the platform. It is intended to provide the tools and infrastructure necessary for stakeholders to have a voice in decision-making related to the evolution of the Cardano ecosystem.

One of the key features of the Voltaire era is the introduction of a treasury system, which will enable the Cardano community to allocate funds to proposals that they consider important for the development of the ecosystem. This treasury will be funded by a portion of transaction fees and will be managed by the community through a voting process. This will allow the community to fund development initiatives, marketing efforts, and other initiatives that they believe will contribute to the growth of the Cardano ecosystem.

The Voltaire era will also introduce a system of on-chain voting, enabling stakeholders to vote on proposed changes to the Cardano protocol. This will provide a more decentralized decision-making process, giving more power to the community and making the platform more resistant to centralization.

Cardano (ADA) all-time high

The all-time high for ADA (Cardano) token was reached on September 2, 2021, at a price of $2.97 USD, according to CoinMarketCap. As of early 2023, the coin is valued at around $0.4, a decrease of 86.5% from its all-time high. ADA is currently experiencing some decent recovery, although we can’t say that the bear market is fully over yet. Cardano is currently the seventh-largest cryptocurrency in the world and has a market capitalization of $14.2 billion and a twenty-four-hour trading volume of $373 million.


With its innovative technology and a strong emphasis on scientific research, Cardano has quickly emerged as a major player in the world of blockchain and cryptocurrency. From its focus on scalability and sustainability to its commitment to decentralization and community governance, Cardano is designed to meet the demands of a rapidly evolving digital landscape.

As the platform continues to evolve through its various development eras, it is poised to offer a powerful, flexible, and secure blockchain solution for a wide range of applications. With its visionary team and passionate community, Cardano is a platform that promises to shape the future of blockchain technology in exciting and innovative ways.


What's the significance of the name "Cardano" and why was it chosen for the platform?

The name "Cardano" was inspired by the Italian mathematician and philosopher Gerolamo Cardano, who was known for his work on probability theory and introducing the concept of negative numbers. The Cardano development team chose the name to reflect the platform's focus on scientific research and innovative solutions.

Can I earn rewards on Cardano even if I don't hold any ADA?

No, you need to hold ADA to participate in the Cardano network and earn rewards through staking. Staking involves holding ADA in a special wallet and delegating it to a stake pool in order to help secure the network and earn rewards.

Is Cardano a proof-of-work or proof-of-stake blockchain?

Cardano is a proof-of-stake blockchain, which means that it relies on stakeholders holding ADA to validate transactions and participate in the network consensus.

What makes Cardano different from other cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum?

Cardano is designed to be more scalable, sustainable, and secure than other cryptocurrencies, with a focus on scientific research and peer-reviewed code.

Our content is derived from a thorough research, yet we acknowledge the potential for deserving businesses to be overlooked. If you’re a business owner or a reader who believes a valuable business is missing from our list, write to us at [email protected].

Share link:

Micah Abiodun

Micah is a crypto enthusiast with a strong understanding of the crypto industry and its potential for shaping the future. A result-driven Chemical Engineer (with a specialization in the field of process engineering and piping design), Micah visualizes and articulates the intricate details of blockchain ecosystems. In his free time, he explores various interests, including sports and music.

Most read

Loading Most Read articles...

Stay on top of crypto news, get daily updates in your inbox

Related News

Subscribe to CryptoPolitan