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In a zChain, state is made up of Message objects. Messages are the canonical format for storing and sending data between Nodes in the Zero Grid.
A Zero Message contains six fields and a signature:
- hash: a hash of a prior Message contents, including the Message signature.
- chain: a valid reference to a zChainId (as defined in the following section) or supported third party chain, such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, or Filecoin, utilizing zChain's multihash format.
- seq: the Message sequence in linear time; e.g. 0, 1, 2... etc.
- timestamp: the time of Message creation, represented by the number of milliseconds since 1 January 1970 00:00 UTC.
- content: for unencrypted data, a public JSON data field with a required type field.
- signature: a digital signature created from a public and private key.
New messages are signed by an Identities private key. This obfuscates Message contents and meta-data prior to being propagated to Nodes within the Zero Grid. The obscured Message disguises the content and data to ensure privacy is protected.