Joule is an interesting extension for the Google Chrome browser aimed at integrating the features of Lightning Network, the second layer of bitcoin. Debuted for the first time in November 2018, in the last 12 months of development, the plugin was also released for other browsers, including Firefox, Opera and of course Brave.
It’s a very interesting extension, designed to make the use of Lightning Network even more user-friendly.
In order for it to work, it is necessary to have a Lightning Network node (local or remote), or to use a wallet like Zap, Lightning App or BTCServer to create an instance on the Lightning Network.
In any case, the entire setup phase is illustrated during the initialisation of the browser plugin.
Joule: the bitcoin wallet on Lightning Network
Joule can be regarded as the counterpart of MetaMask for Ethereum but intended for the Bitcoin Lightning Network.
Through its rather intuitive graphic interface, it is possible to interface with the Lightning Network and carry out operations, like receiving payments, in a very simple way.
As can be seen in the video trailer, it is possible to make actual payment requests, as well as making payments using both the classic Bitcoin blockchain and the second layer Lightning Network. Obviously, there is also the possibility to receive payments, as well as a convenient password to protect access to the wallet.
The features of Joule
Joule offers several interesting features and possibilities. In addition to being able to execute transactions or request payments with a click, both on the classic Bitcoin network and on the Lightning Network, it is also possible to check the history of transactions and take advantage of other advanced features.
It therefore works as a full client for a Lightning Network node.
It is also possible to manage the open channels and their capacity, as well as synchronise the settings between all the PCs on which the plugin has been installed. The setup is also quite simple, considering that once the LN node has been set up, to which the Joule extension should be directed, it is possible to immediately take advantage of the above functions.
Finally, the project is completely open-source and it is possible to download both the sources and the installer of the extension for the various supported browsers, directly from the official website of the project.