BitShares does for business what bitcoin did for money by utilizing distributed consensus technology to create companies that are inherently global, transparent, trustworthy, efficient and most importantly profitable.
A crypto-currency, with the properties and advantages of Bitcoin, that is capable of maintaining price parity with a globally adopted currency (e.g. U.S. dollar), has high utility for convenient and censorship resistant commerce. This can be achieved by BitShares' market pegged assets (MPA), a new type of freely traded digital asset whose value is meant to track the value of a conventional underlying asset by means of contracts for difference (CFD).
A SmartCoin (synonym for MPA) is a crypto-currency that always has 100% or more of its value backed by the BitShares core currency (BTS), to which they can be converted at any time, as collateral in a CFD.
What makes MPAs unique is that they are free from counterparty risk even though they resemble a CFD backed by collateral. This is achievable by letting the network itself (implemented as a software protocol) be responsible for securing the collateral and performing settlements as will be described in more detail below.
This is a subset of the available market pegged assets:
As most crypto currencies, Graphene makes use of a blockchain to update participants about transfers and market activities. Since blocks always refer to the previous block, we get a chain of blocks (blockchain) that contains all transactions every made in the network. Because the blockchain is a publicly accessible and auditable ledger, everyone can take a closer look and verify transfers as well as market orders and order books.
Of course, this web wallet offers a block explorer to assist you with your audit.
Who exactly is allows to produce a block at which time instant is defined by a consensus mechanism called Delegated Proof of Stake. In essence, the shareholders of BitShares (holders of the BTS token) can cast a vote for their preferred block producers on the blockchain. Those so called witnesses with the most votes are allowed to produce blocks.
The Graphene blockchain technology offers a variety of transaction types. Users are not only able to simply transfer assets between each other, but there are also transactions to interact with the decentralized exchange. Most of these transaction types are labeled with a self-explaining tag, others require more knowledge about the inner workings of the company.