Proof of Work #50

One day in crypto, one year in the real world

Happy Year of the Pig! Huge amount of exciting stuff in this update, including a mega-update from folks working on Grin, Handshake inching closer to launch, and a revamp of DDEX after moving off of the 0x smart contract system.

Ethereum Classic, a fork of Ethereum that was created after the DAO incident which the main Ethereum chain rolled back, appears to have been the victim of a 51% attack. At the moment it’s unclear if there were any successful double spends as a result of the attack, but it’s yet another a wakeup call to all exchanges listing proof of work forks with low amounts of chain security that the cost of doing so may very well exceed the benefits.

I had a really fun meeting with one of the folks at Cloudflare about potential ways that Cloudflare could support Handshake for resolving HNS domains and/or improving the security picture of DNSSEC. While not at all cryptocurrency related, I was blown away by all of the cool things Cloudflare is working on behind the scenes to keep the internet free and difficult to censor. I predict that over the next few years, a plethora of technologies including combination of techniques based on domain fronting, mixnets and onion routing, blockchain-based domain resolution a la handshake etc will lead to the internet being extraordinarily hard to censor. One caveat I’d mention here is that if you are a government that is OK with just wholesale blocking huge sectors of the public web (e.g. China) almost none of the above techniques can do much to stop you. However in more liberal states where blocking huge swathes of internet traffic isn’t an option, we’re getting closer and closer to an uncensorable internet.

Bitcoin & Friends

Daniel from Grin

Tieshun and Sean on Handshake

  • A new proof of work proposal for Handshake has been added to the hsd repo: KMAC+Blake2b-256, replacing cuckoo cycle

  • The Urkel team has built and released a gorgeous block explorer for Handshake, viewable here

  • Goosigs based airdrop of HNS coins to github developers is being audited

Jimmy on Bitcoin

Aviv from Spacemesh

JZ from Decred

Johnny from Stellar

  • We're going to skip this week - we had a lot of folks on vacation for the holidays, and look forward to providing larger updates as of next week!

Izaak from Coda

  • First and foremost, we have completed the initial implementation of "succintified" Ouroboros Praos, running for hundreds of blocks before hitting a snag. Over the next few weeks, we'll be working out the bugs and testing rigorously. We're very excited to share what is essentially the most sustainable and scalable blockchain ever implemented!

  • The implementation of the ate pairing in snarky is complete, an essential component for recursive composition in our new highly optimized snarkitecture.

  • We welcome Matthew Ryan to our team. Matthew is our first engineer working solely on snarky, making it easier to use and more efficient. He's already done some great work on macros to improve the developer experience and a flame chart generator for profiling R1CSs.

  • Finally if you haven't already, check out this blog post from Coda engineer Brandon Kase on the data structure we use to achieve both excellent latency and throughput in Coda.

Privacy coins

Paige & Zooko from Zcash

Diego and Riccardo from Monero

  • Some Monero community members (including the Monero Research Lab) have started a new series called "Breaking Monero" where we go over weaknesses of the protocol. You can watch the introduction here: https://youtu.be/WOyC6OB6ezA

Smart contracting platforms

Evan from Ethereum

Myles from EOS

Zaki from Cosmos

  • Game of Stakes is going really well. We've seen a rounds of low hanging fruit attacks on the mempool and adaptation with defense. The network is working well crossing 30k blocks. We continue to learn a lot from the stress testing. We planning an upgrade hard fork.  The best place to watch action is StargazerHubble and BigDipper.

  • We are mostly in the mode of polishing the code for the mainnet launch, preparing features for the first post launch upgrade. We strongly recommend looking at our F1 proof of stake distribution spec. It can offer major user experience improvements to any proof of stake blockchain.

  • We disclosed a critical vulnerability on the Cosmos SDK this week.  If you are using the SDK or Tendermint in production, please get in touch so we can improve our coordinated disclosure posture.

Kate and Dean from Agoric

  • Happy New Year! This week we worked with RMIT to release a medium post by economists Chris Berg, Sinclair Davidson, Jason Potts and our very own Bill Tulloh. It’s on “nanoeconomics,” meaning a layer below microeconomics, including a market in computational resources. This builds on the concepts in the original Agoric papers by Mark S. Miller and K. Eric Drexler. R

  • We’ve just launched a new site for discussing object capabilities in JavaScript at Ocapjs.org. We were noticing a lot of people were exploring solutions for safe module loading, and we wanted a place to be able to discuss it. Feel free to join the discussion!

  • Community member Michael Fig has started to build an amazing tool called Jessica, which is a Jessie (one of our subsets of JavaScript) runtime environment created using only Jessie modules, containing also translators from Jessie to other languages.

  • Community member Bradley Farias has done a significant amount of work on a tool that analyzes the use of authority in JavaScript packages. He says that the tool will include “listing all potential resource authority usages. This is the full set of all free variables and dependencies a resource can obtain directly.”

Financial Infrastructure

Antonio from dYdX

  • You can now buy / sell with DAI on expo!

  • Borrowed volume on dYdX / expo is up +167% from November -> December! (thanks Bloqboard for putting together this report on decentralized lending)

  • Expo now properly accounts for the price of DAI not being exactly $1

  • Hiring for engineering, design, and product roles full-time in SF!

Brendan from Dharma

  • Dharma Lever is live in closed Alpha! In the two weeks since we launched the Alpha program, we've accumulated 80k USD in loan offers. Borrowing starts next week. Reach out to brendan@dharma.io for an invite or for more info

  • We are hiring across a number of roles: product designer, blockchain engineer, and full-stack developers. Check out all of our open roles here

Coulter from MakerDAO

  • Dai has turned 1! As of mid-December, there are 77M Dai in circulation, 1.5% of total ETH supply locked up in CDPs, 5000+ CDPs have been opened, maintained the peg despite a 90% drop in the price of ETH, and have over 200 integrations & partnerships. #HappyBirthDAI 

  • After launching the re-designed CDP Portal this fall, we've now translated it to Chinese, along with the imToken 2.0 wallet building the CDP Portal directly into their app. The MakerDAO website will be fully translated into 10+ languages in the coming days. 

  • MakerScan.io was released by a team from our community. It's quickly become one of the best resources to track CDP metrics or get alerts on your CDP. They even created a telegram bot @MakerScanBot for those interested. 

  • MKR holders voted to decrease the stability fee, going from 2.5% to 0.5%

  • Dai and MKR are listed on Coinbase Pro

  • New integrations with CoinplanDyDxFreewallet,  

Robert from Compound

  • Completed updates to event tracking system to better monitor and link on-chain events to back-end systems & APIs

  • Deployed a suggested gas price API for use in the Compound interface and Oracle system

  • Began planning V2 of the protocol; timeline to be announced later this month

Layer two and interoperability

Paul from Veil

  • Revamped the Veil order form for buying or selling shares in markets. See the new UI on any market page.

  • Added a way for users to track relevant Ethereum transactions, such as trades, redemptions, and deposits. This feature helps make the UX snappier, because users don’t have to wait for transactions to succeed before continuing to their next action.

  • Updated and expanded our FAQ page.

Rahul from 0x

Janine from Liquidity.Network

  • Two hub explorers have now been released. They have been built using the NOCUST server interface and are now live. They will help our users to gain an insight into what's going on with the hub more information can be found at http://hubscan.io/ and http://pipet.xyz/

  • Improvements to the SDK and more information regarding its use has been created.  

Dong Mo from Celer

  • We have sent out a series of our 2018 summary on technologyproduct market fitdeveloper adoption and reflection & future outlook

  • We have released v0.8.0  Testnet. We focused on bug fixes and user experience enhancement features in this release. 

  • We have implemented dynamic deposit/withdraw, multi-token channel, concurrent transaction support, ERC-20 support, atomic state transition, mobile API refactoring.

    We finished cPay app, cGomoku app, on iOS both fully functional on testnet, and the Chinese version of cWallet on android, improved stability across device vendors, improved cGomoku game experience and are refactoring the API

  • We finished multiplayer game sample for iOS and Android, finished user onboarding SDK API, released first Celer Mobile SDK online course.

Alexandra from Parity Technologies

Application infrastructure

Doug from Livepeer

  • The minimum viable implementation of Livepeer's Streamflow scaling proposal, including minimum viable probabilistic micropayments, is now feature complete. Next step is internal integration testing and an internal test network targeting 100 concurrent video streams, at less than 5% overhead for cashing payments.

  • 8 months since launch, the Livepeer network is on the verge of 25% actively staked participation. The target is 50%, before the network begins to automatically alter the issuance rate to maintain the target, which is expected to occur in late 2019.

  • Livepeer is looking to add a Senior Javascript Engineer to the team. Join us, or tell your friends about the opportunity!

Michael from Loom

Ryan from FOAM

  • Published the retrospective "FOAM in 2018, a Year in Review"

  • Completed the first game on the FOAM Map, a Holiday Treasure Hunt. For 10 days a riddle about a Point of Interest was released, the birthplace of Alan Turing for example. The first Cartographer to add the correct point received a unique NFT of the building, designed by Blockcities. This game resulted in great community engagement and excitement over the rewards and was a fantastic learning experience for future games. 

  • Placeholder Capital published an excellent post, "The Cryptoeconomic Circle" exploring the relationship between miners (the supply side), users (the demand side), and investors (the capital side) using FOAM as one of the example networks. 

David from Sia

  • 3 Merge Requests were merged into the Sia repository this week.

  • Despite another short week due to the New Year's Holiday. The Sia team managed to get some important development done. An early alpha release of version 1.4.0 was made available to community members in the #contributors channel. The public release of 1.4.0 is expected in a few weeks.

  • Sia founder Luke Champine released a personal Sia related project he's been working on called us. us enables a developer to access lower level Sia functionality than what is available in the Sia API or other official Nebulous releases. You can read more about us on the Sia blog.

Martin from Tezos

  • No update

Ari from Decentraland

  • Working on the first iteration of the Builder, a drag & drop editor for populating the LAND.

  • Working on the Make-Offer feature of the Marketplace, to bid on items at arbitrary prices.

  • Working on the requirements for Identity, refactoring the communication server with a better decentralized approach, updating references to content service environments in the CLI and the Client. 

  • Working on new SDK documentation and examples, which will be unveiled in a few days.

  • Continued working on new Unity implementation

Bowen from Hydro/DDEX.io

Sam from OpenBazaar

  • After many months of work we now have a release candidate out for the 2.3 multiwallet update. This is a mainnet release candidate. Extensive testing is underway since this release is a major upgrade that touches many parts of the application, particularly the wallet.

Martín from Zeppelin