Proof of Work #27

Hi from extremely muggy Boston!

Some fun stuff:

  • I’ll be in London from the 6th to the 9th and would love to meet up with anyone working on cool crypto projects. Then I’m heading back to Beijing where I’ll be heads down for 2-3 weeks focusing only on incubating a few projects we’ve been brewing up, including Proof of Work’s fancy new website.

  • Our designer threw this much-requested LONG BITCOIN / SHORT THE WORLD shirt up on Teespring, so everyone who emailed asking where you could buy one can go grab one there if you want. She also put up this cute one (the caption reads, loosely translated “you can have my bitcoin when you pry it from my cold dead hands”) for those of you who want something more subtle.

A lot of you are familiar with “hyperbitcoinization,” the scenario where a fiat currency is slowly (and then extremely rapidly) replaced by Bitcoin. While very low fiat liquidity into BTC for the most embattled fiat currencies (bolivares etc) make this unlikely for now, hyperbitcoinization of “shitcoins” might not be far off at all. The current field of cryptocurrencies is unbelievably uneven in terms of quality, with projects like Tron in the top 10 despite being nothing more than a name, a plagiarized whitepaper, and a sporadically active github with nonsensical commits. However, a lot of capital poured into this type of project during the bull market of 2017, and they have largely been able to prevent being drawn down beyond the rest of the market by using their own treasuries to keep their coin afloat.

When do people start dumping these coins for BTC or USD? One double-whammy scenario would be large institutions finding a custody arrangement they are comfortable with, and making large Bitcoin buys that start bringing the price of Bitcoin up. At the same time, regulators decide that unlike ETH, which has achieved enough decentralization to not be a security anymore, stuff like Tron or indeed Ripple which are owned, operated, pumped, dumped, and shilled by single issuers are just illegal securities. A lot of algorithmic funds will start automatically shifting out of alts into BTC, causing a feedback loop where everyone stuck in Tron, Ripple etc frantically dump their shitcoins for BTC or dollars. At some point this becomes pretty reflexive and a project meets the fate of all shitcoins, a return to 0.

One of the objections I’ve heard most often to this scenario is that these projects are often sitting on thousands of Bitcoins and in some cases, hundreds of thousands of ETH. The implication is that the projects can simply prop up the market until faith is restored. However, what these people miss is that the founders of these bad-faith projects have 0 fiduciary duty to do anything of the sort—they can simply allow their coins to die and walk away with the underlying war chest! Which option these unscrupulous folks will take is left as an exercise for the reader.

But enough about shitcoins! At breakfast a month ago, Zooko from Zcash brought up a company which the Zcash Co had invested in that he was really excited about. He drew some diagrams explaining how this company would simplify access control and might serve as the foundation for a new type of smart-contract, and it seemed cool—so I was stoked to meet the folks behind this project at zcon0, and am happy to now be featuring them in Proof of Work. In their own words:

“Agoric enables secure smart contracts across substrates, from local machines to global blockchains. Our object capability (OCAP) layer uses a subset of JavaScript, enabling developers to create more secure smart contracts and decentralized applications.”

I now get an average of 2 requests per day from projects asking to be featured on Proof of Work, so please forgive the slow response times. More next week, thanks as always for reading!

Coulter from MakerDAO

  • Released major updates to the Oasis Platform. OasisDirect now has Trezor and Ledger support, along with other significant changes. Meanwhile, OasisDEX updates include a complete code rewrite from Meteor.js to React/Redux, which will make it easier to introduce additional functionality in the future, as well as updates that make it faster, safer, and more intuitive. 

  • Following the release of the Maker Foundation Proposal, we have begun holding weekly meetings to answer questions from the community. The first one can be viewed here

Phil from MARKET Protocol 

  • Continued development of MARKET.js, with a focus on order book management and pruning

  • Announced a partnership with bluzelle

  • Opened our Boulder, Co office space this week alongside Origin Protocol

Paige & Zooko from Zcash

  • Overwinter activated successfully. Some services didn't upgrade in time so we're working on making sure they get the support they need.

  • Zcon0 happened and the presentations are available online. Many people stated it was the best conference they've ever attended. Congrats to the Zcash Foundation for hosting a successful first conference!

  • The Zcash Company posted a roadmap.

  • More from the weekly update click here.

Michael & Tom from Dfinity

  • Watch Dominic Williams (DFINITY), Kathryn Haun (Andreessen Horowitz, Board of Coinbase), Ed Knight (Nasdaq) and Olaf Carlson-Wee (Polychain Capital) discuss the future of blockchain and the role of regulation in the US.

  • It was announced that DFINITY Foundation, alongside Ethereum Foundation, Protocol Labs, Interchain Foundation, OmiseGO, and Polychain Capital have dedicated resources to help Stanford University launch the new Center for Blockchain Research

Evan on Ethereum

Ari from Decentraland

  • We deployed the first public plaza to mainnet, and are tackling the UI for user identity and in-world communications.

  • Our team released version 0.10.1 of the Marketplace, which fixes transaction bugs and adds some UX improvements: 

  • We're testing the final version of our voting dApp, Agora.

  • We're also working to improve the UX with IPFS and the debugging information in the developer preview mode of the SDK.

Jimmy on Bitcoin

Zaki from Cosmos

  • We updated the Cosmos Roadmap to represent the shift in focus from Software Development to Network Development and mainnet launch.

  • Gaia-7000 which brings governance, the unbonding period and numerous bug fixes to the next testnet will launch sometime during the week of July 3rd.

  • We are gearing up all the necessary paperwork for the game of steaks testnet and will continue to run out traditional gaia series of open testnets for the foreseeable future in parallel.

Ryan from FOAM

  • Excited to announce the FOAM Token Launch, purchaser Proof of Use and Mainnet release happening this July.

  • Continued research and development on the BFT time-sync protocol that underlies Proof of Location and maintains a shared state machine between radio beacons. The protocol is built with the ABCI interface for Tendermint consensus. 

  • Released presentation Slides from `The State of Haskell in Ethereum` talk as well as a new demo applications written using purescript-web3 and Chanterelle. The sample application monitors and displays real time transactions from the art market SuperRare, documentation hosted here.

Doug from Livepeer

  • Built and deployed an in-browser MerkleMiner. Users who had 0.1 ETH in their private key wallets such as Metamask, Status, Toshi, Mist, etc on March 16, can now MerkleMine 2.4 LPT directly in browser to get started staking in Livepeer.

  • Published a proposal for leveraging idle video encoding ASICs on GPU miners to encode video, creating an additional revenue stream for existing crypto miners. 

  • Completed implementation of p2p networking v2 architecture, to be tested on Rinkeby this week, and will provide much more stability between broadcasters and transcoders.

JZ from Decred

  • We’re excited to announce that preliminary Decred support has been added to the Tezor Model T and Trezor One in their latest firmware releases. Decred is not available via their web wallet interface yet, however.

  • Also on the hardware wallet front, Matheus has commenced integration of Trezor support into Decrediton, and is keeping a checklist of items that need to be completed before release. Once completed, users will be able to use their Trezor to purchase tickets (PoS) as well as complete regular transactions.

  • Richard Red’s piece addressing critiques of on-chain governance which we referenced in last week’s issue of Proof of Work has been translated into Chinese by Decred community member Morphy.

Arthur from Liquidity.Network

  • We are incredibly proud of announcing the release of the Ethereum mainnet Liquidity.Network that can be found here. That means, ETH payments without transaction fees are now possible on the mainnet. 

  • In addition, we release another academic paper called NOCUST, complementing our existing REVIVE paper.

  • More details about Liquidity.Network Mainnet can be found in our new blog article.

Antonio from dYdX

  • Deployed 0x orderbook service, Parity nodes

  • Testing shared lending smart contract

  • Interviewed 3 more designer candidates. We're hiring for Engineering and Design roles in SF

Zac from Stellar

Jutta from Parity Technologies

Demi from Zeppelin

  • Working closely with a few big Ethereum projects, helping them migrate to upgradeable tokens using ZeppelinOS

  • Delivered first report of the Solidity compiler audit to the Ethereum Foundation

  • Planning our visit to Asia in August: China, Japan, Korea, Hong Kong and Singapore

Diego and Riccardo for Monero

  • There has been some delay on the GUI 0.12.2.0, due to some builds not working correctly. They are being worked on as we speak, and we hope to have them resolved soon. That's what the frenzy with us has been recently. 

James from Vertcoin

  • Work underway to integrate the new Vertcoin AMD miner into our One-Click Miner

  • Electrum-VTC 3.2.0 rebase completed, awaiting upstream release of Electrum before release

  • Gert-Jaap presented DLCs at Off-the-chain in Berlin, and James haa been working on adding HTLCs to Lit (for multi-hop and atomic swaps), but those things are more DCI-related than VTC.

Bowen from Hydro/DDEX.io

Mitchell from Blockstack

Tom from 0x

  • Published V2 ganache snapshot for local development

  • Published V1 to V2 migration guide

David from Sia

  • 2 Nebulous repo were updated. 8 issues were created, 9 were closed. 4 PRs were merged. GitHub users ChrisSchinnerl, MSevey, and lukechampine had code contributions into Sia.

  • The ability to asynchronously download files from siac was added. This was a community requested feature that allows the siac renter download command to download multiple files at the same time. Read more about it here.

  • Work continues to make the renter accounting more reliable and easier to understand. Sia developer MSevey has been working on this and merged in an important PR addressing the accounting discrepancies. Read more about it here.

  • Various members of the Sia community banded together to form the Sia Test App Community. They have committed to testing current and future versions of Sia through a framework of automated tests. You can read more about them on reddit here and their Sia version 1.3.3 test results here.

Brendan and Nadav from Dharma

Sam from OpenBazaar

  • Our team has built multiple proof of concepts for enabling purchasing listings on the openbazaar.com site. The process of building them has illuminated some of the challenges of a web client and helped us determine how to address them.

  • A significant IPFS rebase is nearing completion on the server side.

  • Continued work on Ethereum integration. The ETH wallet is now making transactions and a smart contract is being built which can now handle basic moderator functions.

  • The 2.2.2 version is nearing completion and will enter the testing phase soon. The release will include improvements to the crypto listings such as adding markups and integrating the CoinMarketCap API, which will allow people to buy and sell over one-thousand cryptocurrencies on OpenBazaar. It will also include new "View on Web" links inside the client, allowing people to easily share OpenBazaar listings on the web.

Katherine from Messari

  • No update

Robert from Compound

  • Continued developing test cases for the Liquidate function, prior to final review.

  • Built mathematical proof to show that liquidation will always return underwater accounts to fully collateralized value

  • Expanded Oracle Protocol specification to handle a variety of attacks, such as compromised keys or invalid external data

  • Continued updating dApp web interface and identified other helper functions to expose in the protocol to allow for easier integrations.

  • Kicked off the UI/UX design process for the dApp web interface to interact with the Compound protocol

  • Interviewed two engineering candidates on-site. If you’re looking, Compound is hiring!

  • Calvin@compound.finance continued structuring of partnerships with crypto projects and financial institutions interested in participating in Compound’s markets at launch