Technology

Smart contracts could soon get a boost in bitcoin as prominent programmer Pieter Wuille has unveiled a new coding language designed specifically for their use. Posted to the bitcoin developer mailing list Monday, the ‘Miniscript’ language aims to make it easier for programmers to write up “smart contracts” or conditions for spending bitcoins. Programmers Wuille, Andrew
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Summa co-founder James Prestwich wants to bridge the great divide: bitcoin vs. ethereum. Bitcoiners notoriously hate the ethereum-centric world of decentralized finance (DeFi), fueled by automated loan software. But two blockchain startups, Summa and Keep, are launching the Cross-Chain Working Group to bridge that divide with a protocol for using bitcoin on ethereum-based systems. The
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Noelle Acheson is a veteran of company analysis and CoinDesk’s Director of Research. The opinions expressed in this article are the author’s own. The following article originally appeared in Institutional Crypto by CoinDesk, a free weekly newsletter focused on crypto assets. Sign up here. Everything flourishes with a bit of attention – even attention itself. You may have
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Samsung has integrated bitcoin (BTC) functionality on its blockchain-enabled smartphones. The move comes months after the flagship Galaxy S10 range was launched in March with a “Blockchain Keystore” offering cryptocurrency storage and transactions for ether (ETH) and related ERC-20 tokens, but which notably excluded the number one cryptocurrency by market cap. The South Korean tech giant has
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Blockchain analytics firm Elliptic partnered with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) to publish a public dataset of bitcoin transactions associated with illicit activity. The group’s study detailed how researchers at the MIT-IBM Watson AI Lab used machine learning software to categorize 203,769 bitcoin node transactions worth roughly $6 billion in total. The research explored whether
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Lightning-centric bitcoin wallets are gaining traction in 2019 and making small transactions affordable by reducing network fees. The bootstrapped Spanish startup Bluewallet garnered 35,000 downloads so far this year, according to co-founder Nuno Coelho, a significant jump from the 5,000 users it had in 2018. Coelho told CoinDesk the wallet’s built-in lightning marketplace, offering connections
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This could be the first time the Lightning Network, a bitcoin scaling solution, officially impacts the U.S. presidential election. Roughly a dozen bitcoiners who support Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang launched a crypto-friendly super PAC on Thursday, Humanity Forward Fund (Humanity FWD). Thanks to the PAC’s payment processor, OpenNode, the entity will be able to
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Cubans are quietly exploring cryptocurrency use-cases on the politically isolated island, even watching Facebook’s Libra project with cautious optimism. Cuban expat Claudia Rodriguez of the Brazilian startup Fusyona, the sole bitcoin exchange proactively serving Cubans, told CoinDesk the exchange has nearly 700 accounts since launching in 2018. She said up to 60 users purchase a
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Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss, co-founders of the New York-based crypto exchange Gemini, may soon join the Libra Association, the consortium governing Facebook’s proposed cryptocurrency. “We’re definitely looking at it in earnest and we’re excited about the project,” Cameron told CoinDesk Tuesday. Tyler added that in their view, Libra is a harbinger of cryptos to come:
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San Francisco-based Lightning Labs, focused on a layered scaling solution for bitcoin, released its first mobile app on Wednesday. According to Lightning Labs application developer Tankred Hase, roughly 2,000 users downloaded the app across both iOS and Android. Both his inbox and the inbox of his colleague, developer Valentine Wallace, were flooded with support requests.
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New research from mobile mesh networking company goTenna explores how mobile communications can be decentralized with the help of bitcoin’s lightning network. Technologists have long explored how to use cryptocurrencies and blockchains to build programs where users are more in control of their data. GoTenna, the company behind mesh network devices for internet-less connections, is
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So-called lightning network “watchtowers” — a much-anticipated next step for securing the network — are coming soon. Watchtowers have long been considered a missing piece of bitcoin’s lightning layer, as they’re crucial for squashing fraud on the experimental, off-chain network that could make bitcoin payments faster and more scalable. With version 0.7 of the LND software
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Long-time Bitcoin Core contributor Michael Ford, who often goes by the handle “fanquake,” has been named the newest maintainer of the open-source software project. Ford will join the four other current Bitcoin Core maintainers — Wladimir van Der Laan, Jonas Schnelli, Marco Falke, and Samuel Dobson — in doing the “janitorial” work that keeps the
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The mobile bitcoin wallet project Samourai Wallet is partnering with the French hardware retailer Nodl to create a bitcoin node device that syncs with Samourai’s privacy-centric mobile wallet. Revealed exclusively to CoinDesk, Nodl co-founder Michel Luczak said this new product will be a “full, self-validating, bitcoin and lightning node” that allows people to use the
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The company behind Slush Pool, the first cryptocurrency mining pool to make its services publicly available, is rebranding. The Prague-based company Braiins is perhaps less well-known than Slush Pool, one of the largest bitcoin mining pools as it makes up more than 9 percent of the cryptocurrency’s hashrate today. Yet Braiins has been operating it
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