Beam 2020 Week #17 - Fork Incoming

Covering April 20th - April 26th 2020

Downloads: Beam Android Wallet | Beam iOS Wallet | Beam Desktop Wallet

Beam News

A jam-packed week for Beam with the duly awaited announcement of the upcoming hard fork! If you hadn’t guessed already, the hard fork will take place at block 777777, check out the announcement and don’t forget to clap to your heart’s content. This is going to be a huge event for Beam, and one that has been greatly anticipated by the community and team. So let’s take a look at what it means, and what to expect around the hard fork.

What it means for users?

  • Users will need to update their wallets. They will be able to do so both before and after the hard fork (although recommended before). The hard fork wallet release, Eager Electron 5.0, will be released with ample time prior to the hard fork. This will enable users to update in advance, and seamlessly switch over at the appropriate block height.

What it means for miners?

  • Similarly for users, miners will be able to update their wallets and nodes prior to the hard fork, and keep on hashing on after the fork. We will coordinate with the Beam mining pools to ensure the transition is as smooth as possible for those mining to a pool. More details for miners can be found here.

What it means for Beam?

As mentioned, this is a huge event for Beam, and with it comes some incredible network upgrades. One of the bigger changes is to the mining algorithm, from BeamHash II to BeamHash III. This is outlined in detail in the announcement, so here I will cover the new features we will see post fork.

  • Confidential Assets:
    Confidential Assets (CA) will extend Beam and allow trading of additional kinds of assets on the Beam blockchain with the same scalability and confidentiality of the Mimblewimble protocol. It will allow the issuance of Confidential Synthetics (commodities like gold, stable coins, digital assets such as shares, stocks, and bonds, etc.), Confidential Wrapped Assets (BTC, ETH, etc.), and Community Coins/Tokens. The CA’s will benefit from the incredible usability, privacy and scalability of Beam, being first class citizens in the wallets. They are an integral building block, laying the foundations for the Beam Confidential DeFi Infrastructure being built out. Something we’re incredibly excited to see coming to fruition so fast!

  • Lelantus Mimblewimble:
    Lelantus Mimblewimble adds an extra layer of privacy when needed, to help break the linkability, and protect against such things as the flashlight attack. This is achieved through users having the option to recycle their funds via a shielded pool, to increase the anonymity set substantially, and allowing for greater privacy protections.

  • One Sided Payments:
    As I am sure you are aware, transactions of Beam are currently interactive, given the nature of the underlying Mimblewimble protocol. For some situations, this can pose an inconvenience, especially for those that are used to the way Bitcoin and most cryptocurrency transactions work today. One sided payments, via Lelantus Mimblewimble, will allow for users to make a transaction without the need to interactively construct it with the receiver. Lelantus Mimblewimble’s primary addition is privacy, but with it comes the useful ability to make these one sided payments.

As you can see, the upcoming hard fork has some great feature upgrades for Beam that we are all very excited about! If you have any questions regarding the fork, want to know more about issuing confidential assets, or want to let us know your thoughts, jump into the chat and let us know.

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Due to the current situation, we are not planning or attending any upcoming offline events. We will focus our efforts towards online activities for the foreseeable future.

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