The MimbleWimble protocol promises to solve some problems related to scalability and privacy through the use of Lightning Network, the second layer solution developed on the Bitcoin blockchain. Recently, thanks to a new Beam wallet update (Clear Cathode 3.1), Laser Beam transactions and new features have also been introduced.
MimbleWimble was tested for several years before it went into production in 2016, by an anonymous developer. Thanks to its elliptical curve cryptography it is able to use much shorter keys than other types of cryptography, thus requiring only 10% of the storage requirements that are normally needed on the Bitcoin blockchain.
Scalability and privacy are the core of this protocol.
New features for Clear Cathode 3.1
Thanks to the new updates released on September 16th, and the use of the MimbleWimble protocol, this version of Clear Cathode is able to bring several improvements to the Beam wallet:
- Recovery sheet to have the ability to recover any wallet;
- Several translations have been introduced including French;
- Better user experience for smaller mobile screens;
The implementation for Beam, compared to that of Grin, offers greater ease of use and therefore a better user interface at the time.
In the general scenario where users want to shop using bitcoins (BTC), or other cryptocurrencies, it can sometimes be cumbersome. Nobody wants to wait 10 minutes for the block to be mined and the transaction confirmed, so several questions arise about how to solve these situations. Thanks to the introduction of Laser Beam, many issues are eliminated.
Consider such a scenario, for example:
Alice grabs her coffee every day in the bar where Bob works. She could make a transaction in Beam every morning, but it would be inconvenient because of the confirmation time of the transactions using the Proof of Work (PoW) protocol. That’s where Lightning Network comes into play: on the first day of the month a channel (with the relative Channel ID) is opened between Alice and Bob and every morning Alice sends an amount of crypto to Bob through this channel.
As long as the channel is not closed, transactions are not actually recorded on the blockchain. To close the channel, it is sufficient to include in the last transaction the explicit request to do so. What happens if Alice decides to close the channel beforehand without Bob’s permission? Thanks to Beam’s hard fork, which took place on August 15th, this problem has been solved. Here is a video that shows how Laser Beam transactions work.