Proof of Work # 19

Good afternoon from Boston, happy belated PoW day!

Proof of Work now has a 0x-focused cousin, the Relayer Report, which updates at a slightly more leisurely biweekly pace. While at the moment decentralized exchanges are fairly illiquid, and largely dependent on a few specific coin pairs for volume, they are clearly on their way to being real competitors to centralized exchanges. One of the biggest drivers of that trend is the continuing development of various stablecoins including Maker Dai, Basis (née Basecoin), TrueUSD etc. In the event of a global crypto shutdown (albeit something which appears to be less and less likely with each passing day) a combination of peer-to-peer fiat OTC trading à la Local Bitcoins and DEX trading on 0x from one token to another should ensure the crypto ecosystem is not going to go away just because some government(s) decide they don’t like it.

I’m admittedly a bit of a privacy nut, but something which seems to be missing from the ecosystem is a stablecoin with at least cash-like privacy guarantees… Anyone?

There are a couple of big projects I’m really excited to add to PoW but which I have to wait for funding announcements for—stay tuned, the next few issues should be relatively exciting!

Larry & Ryan from Blockstack

  • ShapeShift Universal Wallet Bounty. We announced our $50k bounty for a universal crypto wallet.

  • Simplified token blockchain. We deleted 27,000 lines of Python for the next release, which will simplify deploying Blockstack Core nodes, and make it easier for the token system to exist. By Monday, users will be able to use testnet tokens to register testnet namespaces and names. 

  • Search index for Blockstack names. We're improving the search index, which adds support for subdomains and reduces the batch time for reindexes.

  • Sponsored names. We are working on support for immediately usable subdomain names, meaning that users will be able to register names without having to pay bitcoin.

Evan on Ethereum

Sam from OpenBazaar

  • OpenBazaar released a video of their 2018 roadmap and continued work on their new cryptocurrency trading feature.

JZ from Decred

  • Big release this week as v1.2.0 is finally ready for prime time. New features include performance enhancements which result in significantly faster start up time, improved access to chain-related information for providing better SPV (Simplified Payment Verification) support, and committed filters.

  • We’re also proud to announce we have recently added several independent developers as well as a new corporate contractor named “Raedah Group”. As always, we’re looking for talented individuals to join the team.

  • Project lead Jake Yocom-Piatt gave an interview with The Block discussing the rationale behind Decred not doing an ICO or having any external funding.

  • I also gave an interview with BlockTribune in a similar vein discussing the regulatory environment and some of the philosophical underpinnings of Decred.

Jutta from Parity Technologies

Katherine from Messari:

  • Our volunteer community published five new cryptoasset profiles this week: Gnosis, Blockstack, Tether, District0x, and Kin. To date, we’ve dropped 13 profiles, with another 50+ expected in Q2. These will serve as the backbone to our beta data library “Agora”, which will launch this June.

  • Our data engineering team from Palantir, Bloomberg, MSFT, etc. is aggressively hiring and looking for candidates with front-end, back-end, full stack, and blockchain analytics chops.

  • Our beta launch of the Daily Bit, Messari’s daily newsletter on the token economy was a great success! We hit 3,700 email subscribers, with another 12.5k on Medium. Subscribe for updates here

  • Regulatory issues of the week: Chilean crypto exchanges are fighting legal battles to stay open in Chile.

  • CFTC Commissioner Brain Quintez gives a speech on utility tokens and says that not all tokens have to be either securities or currencies.

  • The U.S. House Appropriations Committee held a hearing this week and SEC Chairman Jay Clayton reaffirms Bitcoin as a pure medium of exchange and a replacement for currency.  

  • Hottest debate of the week was sparked by Gary Gensler, the former chairman of the CFTC, who thinks that there is a “strong case” for ether and ripple to be classified as securities. If Gensler is right, that means that the two would be considered non-compliant securities in the U.S. and could possibly face penalty from regulators.

  • The 16 licensed crypto exchanges in Japan formed a self-regulatory association (the Japan Cryptocurrency Exchange Association) and held its first meeting earlier this week.

Paige & Zooko from Zcash

  • Zcashd Team: Merged 5 PRs, making sure Overwinter will be supported on WinZEC. Established a more succinct process for user support tickets and how they should be properly passed to the suitable engineering teams for addressing.

  • Consensus Protocol Team: Getting Sapling ready for primetime: initial support for the Sapling transaction format and pulling in the Sapling libraries which have been in heavy development and auditing over the last several months. While the new MPC generation ceremony for Sapling circuit parameters is not complete, separate parameters were generated to be ready for testnet activation and implemented into the consensus code this sprint.

  • Community, Dev Tools, Ecosystem, Documentation: We’re transitioning most of our documentation into a Readthedocs instance, making sure 3rd party tools are ready for Overwinter, prepping to attend a bunch of conferences, and also are continuing to plan our own conference, Zcon0

Demi from Zeppelin

  • New OpenZeppelin release v1.9.0 including the new emit keyword in Solidity, some new functionality, and other enhancements

  • Lots of work in improving the development experience for ZeppelinOS's Kernel and CLI, as we get closer to its launch 

  • 4000+ developers now in the OpenZeppelin community. Feel free to join to discuss smart contract development and security

Doug from Livepeer

  • Published initial economic parameters for Livepeer's main net release. 

  • Hosted workshops on staking and delegating in a delegated stake based network. 

  • Doug from Livepeer will be at the Ethereum Developers Conference (EDCon) in Toronto this week speaking about scalable verification of work with Livepeer + Truebit. Say hello!

Robbie from Truebit

  • Hosted a private event for 40+ Compiler and VM engineers with Dfinity and Polychain.  Discussed the Truebit Protocol and WASM architecture.  Link here

  • Added new repo that is intended to include scripts that compile and install wasm libraries.  Currently there is only a script for openssl
    Standardized dispute resolution layer interface

  • Truebit OS can load user specified modules at runtime now

  • Went Skydiving with some of the SF Crypto Community including The GraphNetwork, Golem, 1 Protocol, Quantstamp, Polychain Capital, SV Angels and Fifty Years VC.  

Zaki from Cosmos

  • The basic cryptoeconomics of the hub including bonding and delegation rewards landed in the stake module over the last the week. These features will be deployed in the new public testnet on Tuesday.

  • There is a known exploit in the inflation reward logic until BFT time lands in Tendermint. It will be interesting to see if anyone exploits in the testnet.

Ari from Decentraland

  • Last week, we released version 1.0.2 of our CLI which includes a fix for validating parcel coordinates, improved warnings, and the ability to preview scenes offline.

  • Our dApps team has been working on a new statistics dashboard for the LAND Marketplace, with plans to deploy next week. They are also making progress with the Estates feature, which will group LAND parcels together for easier management.

  • The dApps team is also improving the performance and usability of the Marketplace Atlas by adding more gesture support for a better experience on mobile devices while decreasing load times.

  • Finally, we are working on creating a decentralized voting platform called Decentraland Agora. More updates on Agora soon.

Diego and Riccardo for Monero

  • Monero has an initiative called Monero Integrations, they just launched a plug-in for Open Cart to easily accept Monero. Open Cart Is added to the already existing plugins that exist, such as Woocommerce, PrestaShop, WHMCS, and Magneto. 

Antonio from dYdX

James from Vertcoin

Jimmy on Bitcoin

  • BIP46, proposal for BIP32 paths that support both multi-coins and single/multisig

  • Numerifides, proposal for human-readable names for BTC addresses

  • SLIP0032, extensions to BIP32

Michael & Tom from Dfinity

Brendan and Nadav from Dharma

  • As of Monday 30 April, Dharma Plex is in closed beta on the Ethereum mainnet. We will continue this closed beta for the duration of our bug bounty and final security audit. Email brendan@dharma.io if you'd like access to the closed beta

  • From Monday 30 April to Monday 7 May we are conducting a public bug bounty. Earn up to 50k USD for critical exploits. Details here

  • Last week, Bloqboard went live on the Kovan testnet. Bloqboard is the first Dharma debt relayer, connecting borrowers and lenders in a decentralized, non-custodial manner. Bloqboard was built by a team of developers that we met at ETHDenver and the MIT Bitcoin Expo

Zac from Stellar

  • No updates.

David from Sia

  • 3 Nebulous repo was updated this week. 2 issues were created, 12 were closed. 6 PRs were merged.

  • GitHub users ChrisSchinnerl, lukechampine, MSevey, tbenz9 and nielscastien had code contributions into Sia this week.

  • New Nebulous employee Matthew Sevey had his first code contribution merged in, congratulations and we hope to see many more in the coming months. PR can be found here.

  • Github user nielscastien added new functionality into the siac command to view details about host contracts. This is a significant feature that many hosts have been asking for and will be official released in Sia v1.3.3. Read more about it here

  • Chris merged in a “speedup contract formation” PR that should reduce the amount of time required to form a set of contracts between renters and hosts.

Ryan from FOAM

  • Released a "Read the Docs" for Chanterelle, our open source functional alternative to Truffle for Ethereum. The documents provide a walkthrough for using the build tool.  

  • Finalized our product and technical whitepapers for public release.

Tom from 0x