Proof of Work #36

Hi from rainy Boston and welcome to the crypto space’s weekly standup meeting!

Super stoked to welcome Daniel from the Grin community to provide updates on their progress working on a scalable privacy-focused coin based on the Mimblewimble protocol (simple explanation of MW). This talk (with transcript!) by friend-of-PoW Andrew Poelstra gives an incredible history of Grin, which involves a bunch of wizards from Harry Potter showing up in an IRC channel and dropping a bunch of exciting ideas anonymously, which eventually coalesced into Grin. Must read.

I pruned PoW significantly, dropping any links to talks and tweets, and anything that isn’t a significant technical update. Projects like Sia and Grin (among many others) consistently churn out extremely meaty updates, and I want to ensure every update is always meeting that bar.

Namebase, the exchange for Handshake names I mentioned a few updates ago, is now in private beta and will be a lot easier to use in a day or two. Anyone interested in trying it out can sign up at and should get an invite in a day or two, first come first served.

Finally, next week something new and interesting is coming to PoW that will allow for a lot more interesting discussion. If you want to help test it out, please shoot an email to

Bitcoin & Friends

Daniel from Grin

Aviv from Spacemesh

Jimmy on Bitcoin

JZ from Decred

  • August was a busy month for the project, a sample of our most active git repos showed 239 active PRs, 219 commits, 25K additions, and 11K deletions spread over 2-10 devs per repo. More information here.

  • For a good recap of everything that’s transpired over the last month, you can also check out the latest issue of the Decred Journal which was just released this week.

  • We also tagged v1.3.0-RC2 for the Decred CLI tools and Decrediton, we’re quite excited to be nearing final release for v1.3.0 which will dovetail with the imminent launch of Politeia. See here.

Zac from Stellar

  • Signature checks  have been added here.

  • Protocol v10 is rolling out on the public network. Since the beginning of August we’ve upgraded Testnet (Horizon v0.14.0, stellar-core v10.0.0 and protocol 10), SDF Horizon nodes (v0.14.0) and SDF core nodes ( v10.0.0). More info here.

  • Stellar Build Challenge #7 results are out!

Privacy coins

Izaak from Coda

  • Completed implementation of a roughly 300% faster Pedersen hash function in snarky (our zk-SNARKs library) as a modified version of the ZCash team’s construction.

  • Finished the implementation of an optimized signature-of-knowledge construction using the Groth-Maller 2017 SNARK. This makes it possible for users to do useful blockchain-compression work for the network without others being able to take credit for that work.

  • Dev team has been charging ahead on our implementation of proof-of-stake, completing the essential components of Ouorobos Praos outside the SNARK and integrating a highly-optimized VRF.

  • We’re on track to launch our private alpha testnet at the end of the month.

  • We welcome Benedikt Bünz, co-inventor of bulletproofs, as a technical advisor.

  • We’re actively hiring cryptographers and engineers to work on our cutting-edge blockchain. People of color, LGBTQ individuals, women, and people with disabilities are strongly encouraged to apply.

Paige & Zooko from Zcash

  • Completing, reviewing and testing wallet RPC support for the Sapling upgrade. Follow along and help test in the #zcashd-team community chat channel.

Diego and Riccardo from Monero

Smart contracting platforms

Evan from Ethereum

  • No Update.

Zaki from Cosmos

Kate and Dean from Agoric

  • The first proof-of-concept implementation of our smart contract execution engine (the "Vat") is now feature-complete. It exercises secure libp2p-based messaging between both solo and quorum (replicated) Vats, durable state checkpointing via deterministic replay of inbound messages, small-scale distributed consensus about message delivery order, and downstream enforcement of the consensus rules for messages emitted by quorum Vats.

  • Based on a previous conversation between Mark Miller and the Node Security Workgroup, Bradley Meck has put together a draft document that “proposes a way to introduce a set of features to Node.js in order to achieve a reasonable security model based upon the Object-Capability Model and verification of resources loaded by Node.js”

Financial Infrastructure

Antonio from dYdX

  • Implemented contract to make bidding on closing auctions easier (#433). Finished building service to automatically bid on auctions using DEX liquidity.

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

Brendan and Nadav from Dharma

  • Development of our ERC721 Collateralizer is progressing nicely. We kicked off peer review and opened a bug bounty on the relevant contracts and built a tutorial for the new contracts

  • Built and released several new Dharma tutorials, doubling the content available in the Dharma Developer Portal

  • Started work on v0.1 of a liquidity sharing API to standardize how projects share open debt orders. Much more to come here in the coming weeks

  • Supported hackers building on Dharma at #ETHBerlin -- innovative highlights include an Ethereum direct debit system in which overdrafts are drawn from Dharma credit liquidity, and a DAO that can democratically vote to take on debt.

  • We’re hiring blockchain engineers and full stack engineers. Check out our open positions here.

Coulter from MakerDAO

  • No Update.

Phil from MARKET Protocol

  • We have been working on an updated grid view of our contract explorer.  The grid view will give uses a more visual way to find contracts of interest with filters for contracts with large volume as well as those nearing expiration.  There is a quick video of the UI here from our weekly call.

  • This week we are focused on implementing our simulated exchange which will allow users a chance to be able to trade against a market making bot.  To see where we are at in our release cycle you can always take a look at our ZenHub board which is publicly available to anyone with a github account. 

  • Research into implementing Chainlink is ongoing.  The collaboration between our projects is all happening out in the open.

Layer two and interoperability

Tieshun from Namebase

  • Hired a frontend developer contractor.

  • Merged a bugfix to use an address object in the coin address endpoint into the official Handshake client.

  • Started discussions with the Sia team about an exciting partnership!

Tom from 0x

  • No Update.

Dong Mo from Celer

  • Partnership: Celer + Dfinity: We are excited to announce our partnership with DFINITY! Celer Network has gained early access to DFINITY’s blockchain SDK. Using the SDK, Celer Network has successfully implemented the first version of cChannel on DFINITY. Through this partnership, Celer Network has become the first project to incorporate off-chain scalability solution to DFINITY.

  • Backend technology: We finished the implementation of backend end-to-end testing framework, finished preliminary cPay end-to-end testing, finished the implementation of cApp dispute module, finished the implementation of cApp server. Made good progress on state persistence and recovery with levelDB. Reliable event monitoring module is also in progress.

  • Mobile technology: We designed UX and UI for the first cApp, implemented the new animations for token transfer, finished refactoring transaction details and transaction list, finished wallet menu. 

Alexandra from Parity Technologies

Application infrastructure

Doug from Livepeer

Ryan from FOAM

  • Deployed the smart contracts of the FOAM Map platform to the main net of Ethereum, list of contracts here. We are very excited for Cartographers to begin mapping and adding Points of Interest! 

  • Released the audit of the FOAM smart contracts as well as the audit of the 'Token Controller' smart contracts, which enforces Proof of Use for token holders. 

  • Released a user guide for 'Proof of Use' as well as launched a tutorial for the FOAM Map. 

  • Participated in 'Proof of Work' an art opening highlighting blockchain based art projects in Berlin at the Schinkel Pavilion. The show is open until December.

David from Sia

  • 2 Nebulous repo was updated. 6 issues were created, 4 were closed. 14 PRs were merged.

  • GitLab users shatnerz, nielscastien, tbenz9, MSevey and ChrisSchinnerl had code contributions merged into Sia.

  • Sia version 1.3.4 was released this week. It features corrected reporting of the renter financials, support for simultaneous streaming of multiple files, the first steps for the UI overhaul, ability to cancel specific file contracts and multiple other bug fixes and improvements.

  • ChrisSchinnerl created the Address filter. As part of host database operations, Sia now resolves hosts announced using a hostname (like “”) into real IPs. Thereafter, the renter module will not select a host to form a new contract if it already has a contract with another host in the same subnetwork. These important changes mean that the renter will less likely form two contracts with the same entity, favoring the decentralization and spreading of the stored data, what turns into increased security and stability for the data. See here.

  • MSevey improved the code related to the recently added /renter/contract/cancel API endpoint. It will now form the new replacement contract immediately after the removal. See here.

  • The external contributors shatnerz, nielscastien and tbenz9 have corrected multiple typos in the documentation and code comments, as well as outdated information in the documentation.

  • A note from Steve: Thanks to the new renter/contract/cancel API endpoint that Matt included in Sia last week, Discord mod @hakkane has created a tool called Decentralizer. This app geolocates your list of hosts, allowing you to cancel those sharing geolocation. This results in better security and geographic spreading of data. See here.


Martin from Tezos

  • Made some progress on tzsuite, now we can batch up to 300 tx into one operation. Added watch address functionality.

  • Started setting up a Tezos Improvement Proposals repo and adjusting the EIP process to fit Tezos. We'll be making it public soon. Contact me if you want to get involved.

  • TezosJ SDK is a library now available for Android and plain Java developers. It allows Java programmers to make available Tezos Wallets to their systems. By using TezosJ SDK, one can easily integrate Tezos blockchain to his/hers applications. As TezosJ SDK results in a JAR file, any language that can use this will also be able to integrate with Tezos. For example: Coldfusion/Lucee, PHP, Python and so on. TezosJ SDK for Android comes with a fully functional Android Tezos Wallet demo with source code. We intend to take Tezos to places it has never gone before.

Bowen from Hydro/

  • Product updates: Launched black skin, improved the usability of chart area with line chart, improved wrap and unwrap modal to provide % amount selections, and improved balance area with a connect wallet alert. See here.

  • Published Decentralized Exchanges 101 on CoinMarketCap.

Ari from Decentraland

  • No Update.

Sam from OpenBazaar

  • Client and server work continues on the multiwallet feature.

  • Multiple bug fixes for the upcoming 2.2.5 release. A second release candidate has been published.

  • A proof of concept is being built to test the feasibility of chat for the web-based client.

Demi from Zeppelin

Katherine from Messari

  • No Update.