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LINKS FOR ADDITIONAL READING FOR THIS VIDEO & ALL INFO IN TEXT DOWN BELOW:
Igno Peverell replies to Jackson Palmers intro video: https://www.reddit.com/r/Mimblewimble/comments/7x1cpc/crypto_explained_what_is_mimblewimble_grin/
Andreas Antonopoulos briefly explains: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qloq75ekxv0
Grin GitHub: https://github.com/mimblewimble/grin
Privacy for Bitcoin is an important feature that is only gaining in importance. Considering the kind of freedom that Bitcoin has introduced to us, with it being borderless and peer-to-peer, and all it would be a real shame if it lacked fungibility. This could be a big problem down the road, and it’s an excellent reason why privacy features should be taken into consideration. There is one way that privacy and scalability can be added to Bitcoin’s list of attributes, it’s got a silly name but it comes with promising implementations, so let’s get into it.
It’s called Mimblewimble and the entire project is tom riddled with Harry Potter references. (See what I did there?) But seriously though, mimblewimble has a really interesting way of tackling two major issues, that is privacy and scalability and it all has to do with the way transactions are recorded, or in mimblewimbles case, summarized.
I found a video where Andreas Antonopoulos briefly goes over mimblewimble which can help you understand it, but there’s an even better video created by Jackson Palmer who really does a great job of breaking down how mimblewimble works and how it addresses both of these issues. I’ll provide the links to both of those videos down in the description.
In case you’re not going to be checking those out, and you just want a brief synopsis, be warned that this is a shallow explanation and I think it would be good of you to take some time to familiarize yourself with these concepts.
Anyway, basically, mimblewimble allows for end of transactions to be summarized in a way that reduces the size of the blockchain but is still independently verifiable. That’s how it helps a blockchain scale.
It tackles privacy by essentially removing addresses and instead requires two parties to interact with each other.
Initially I believe both parties needed to be online at the same time for a transaction to occur, which creates some obvious limitations, but this is no longer a requirement, although it would certainly be the fastest way to make transactions. So because there are no public addresses in the Mimblewimble system, only the parties who are a part of the transaction know the details of that transaction.
This also sets it apart from other privacy focused cryptocurrencies which require you to mix your coins to achieve anonymity because a blockchain built with mimblewimble will have privacy built into the actual design of the blockchain.
I hope this has piqued your interest and you’ll be digging deeper into this one. For those of you who are interested in learning more, here’s the kicker!
Mimblewimble has been floating around the Bitcoin space for a couple years now and apparently it could be implemented as a soft-fork or as a side chain to the Bitcoin blockchain. Since these kinds of changes are usually pretty slow to manifest for Bitcoin, wouldn’t it be cool to see how this actually works on a real live network? Well the best you can get at this point is to check out Grin. It’s not exactly live as it only has a testnet to offer, but here are some other aspects to Grin that I think make it worth paying attention to:
It is a proof of work blockchainThey’re committed to a mining algorithm that will keep ASICs irrelevant.
They seem to have a strong dev team
It’s written in the programming language Rust which further facilitates speed and scalability.