Kusama is an incentivized testnet for developers to run experiments in a Polkadot-like environment. It is designed to help understand how the various cutting edge technologies introduced in areas including governance, staking and sharding work under “real” economic conditions.
In other words, Kusama is a community-owned research and development network that will exist as long as it continues to be maintained by the community. It serves as a testing ground for developers testing early functionality and preparing to build and deploy on Polkadot.
What is a canary network?
Canary release, or canary deployment, is a development pattern used to minimize the risk involved with introducing new or modified software by slowly deploying to a subset of users or deploying in a test environment before making it widely or publicly available.
Types of Kusama Nodes
Validators participate in transaction verification and commit new blocks to the Kusama blockchain. We run validators across all major Substrate-based chains, cross-leveraging optimizations and security practices, and test all software, infrastructure, and protocol upgrades on ourselves before pushing to our customers.
The Kusama protocol uses controllers which are bonded to by stash accounts to nominate validators. Each controller can nominate up to 16 validators, and the protocol distributes the bonded stash algorithmically amongst nominated validators.