Happy birthday, Novacoin.

You had a lot of naysayers to battle just to get to this point. Many people thought you were a scam as rumors spread quickly after you introduction about thousands of pre-mined coins. Forum members accused you of being part of a pump-n-dump scheme, whereby nefarious investors would inflate the value of a currency before selling off and wrecking the market.

Yet here you are. It’s time we celebrate.

Novacoin was launched in February 2013 under the symbol NVC. It was designed to be an improvement upon Peercoin. But fear-mongering almost caused it to suffer crib death.

That would have been unfortunate, because Novacoin represents a real innovation in the cryptocurrency space. While it does use a hybrid proof-of-stake/proof-of-work mining model, a la Peercoin, Novacoin rewards users for the coins they already have.

This proof-of-stake idea could be a long-term fix for the potential problem created by the declining returns Bitcoin miners will face.

Not only that, but Novacoin mining had low difficulty. No mining rig arms races necessary here.

And despite the controversy over alleged pre-mining, Novacoin has risen in value to around $10 per NVC, although that’s less than half of its all-time high of $24, hit in November. Still, only a few cryptocurrencies are more valuable, despite a market cap of only about $7 million at the time of writing.

The PoS model of rewarding miners has certainly helped. But one other innovation has won Novacoin fans: Its dual blockchain. That makes it nearly impossible to double-spend the coins, unless you can somehow organize a 51% attack simultaneously on both blockchains.

So, Novacoin, here’s to your first year of existence!