State Channels, Stratum Support, Generalized Accounts and More!

Photo by Bogdan Karlenko

The core dev updates are back in the Blog. Lots of useful information in this one. Read it!

Introducing Some Changes to the Core Dev Updates

You may have noticed that the last dev update was published here in the Blog almost a month ago. The reason behind this is that all æternity development teams are now focusing on providing bi-weekly updates in the Forum, where discussions could be much more efficient.

Nonetheless, we decided that the dev updates tradition in the Blog must be continued and the users who are used to receiving updates here must be kept in the loop.

The current plan is to draft a summary of the core dev updates published in the Forum and share it here. The updates that will be shared in the Blog will come out a bit later than those in the Forum, so the Forum will still be the place to go to if you want to get an update as soon as it comes out.

We are also launching a weekly product managers call that is recorded and shared on YouTube. Watching the 30-minute long videos is the very best way to stay up to date with what the æternity developers (not only core) are up to.

Without further ado, here is what the æternity core dev team has focused on in the past weeks.

Core Dev Update

The core team continued their work on the technological features and improvements promised for the Fortuna hard fork (May 28, 2019).

State channels improvements introduced during the last weeks include:

  • improved WebSocket API making it more stabe and easier to use;
  • improved documentation with custom timeouts for state changes;
  • improved transactions versioning: introducing new versions of transactions to go in the Fortuna release, while keeping the backwards compatibility of current transactions. This feature is not really channels-specific but is still required for allowing us to expand state channels functionality in a backwards compatible manner;
  • progress on support for on-chain event notifications that are required for the disputing mechanism [work in progress];
  • progress on embedding the on-chain environment inside every off-chain update [work in progress]. This will improve the stability of State Channels and make all updates — off-chain and on-chain forced progress ones — more deterministic.

The team is also working on something unique for the blockchain world — generalized accounts.

A generalized account is an account that is transferred into a contract and for which signing is done by contract calls.

The team achieved significant progress on this tech feature that will allow a lot of flexibility when it comes to a wide variety of æternity wallets.

  • two necessary new types of transactions have been implemented and are feature complete;
  • generalized accounts are also being enabled in state channels.

Startum support in the æternity node is almost ready. The main problem being addressed is finding a balance between security and convenience. Polishing of “rough edges” is also needed. Once all this is done, real-world tests will begin — first small scale, then on the Testnet.

A major focus for the core developers up to the Fortuna fork (and most probably beyond) is the new VM. It is currently being connected to the main chain and its gas model is being developed. Work on serialization and deserialization is already complete.

Much effort is always dedicated to testing. The æternity dev team is religious about [automated] testing! Work is being done on extending the test case generators to cover more contracts, state channels and generalized accounts. Thanks to the heavy testing that has been done, an interesting bug was identified that found the VM crashing in one specific case that no one had thought of testing. You can learn more about it in the Forum.

The above updates are a summary of what the core dev team published in the Forum. You can find the full update here:

The best place to ask questions and make comments is, again, the Forum!

Thank you for all your support! æternity is really coming out nicely.

It is definitely one of the most technologically advanced blockchains in the industry.

Interested in æternity? Get in touch:

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