What makes a blockchain project 'decentralized'?
Perhaps you have heard about 'decentralized' a couple of times being thrown about by maxis.
Bitcoin this, Ethereum that, well, this will go on as long as these two projects exist.
The question is: You are a newbie and wondering what truly makes a blockchain project decentralized?
Decentralization makes cryptocurrencies unique. Without this property, the network becomes vulnerable to attacks, and transactions won't be immutable or censorship-resistant--only one part of the puzzle.
When determining whether a network is decentralized or not, first, you have to look at how coins/tokens are distributed. This is important because, well, let's admit this: Most folks care more about the money; technology is secondary.
If it is a proof-of-work network, it would be fair if there is a systematic way of issuing coins. Whenever a significant percentage of tokens are pre-mined and, worse off, allocated to the team, that is one big red flag.
Secondly, if miners power the network, you should check node count and geographical distribution.
Third, developers play a big part.
Are the blockchain developers mainly from the project's foundation, or are talent drawn from the global pool of enthusiasts contributing to make the platform a success? Besides, the more there are developers; it is easy to blow out rogue developers and any attempt of malfeasance.