Creator of Litecoin Charlie Lee recently revealed that he is working on solutions to bring privacy and fungibility to the Litecoin network. The Litecoin foundation is also working with Beam to integrate confidential transactions into Litecoin using Mimble Wimble technology.
Litecoin has served as a testbed for Bitcoin to integrate new technological solutions, Segwit was first implemented on the Litecoin network successfully before Bitcoin. Now the developers seem to be taking the next step towards improving the technology by adding privacy and fungibility features which are core to the Cypherpunk and sound money Ethos.
As per Charlie’s announcement, the core developers are planning to integrate Mimble Wimble extension Blocks.
What are Extension Blocks?
The concept of Extension Blocks (Auxiliary Blocks) was first introduced by a Bitcoin developer named Johnson Lau back in 2013. The solution aimed at effectively increasing the Block size via a soft fork without needing to split the network. The extension blocks feature will be optional to users without forcing anyone to do opt into anything that they do no desire.
An extension block is pegged along with the main blocks but is not Cryptographically linked to other blocks. So the extension blocks can effectively be increased to whatever size one wishes and can also support various features such as smart contracts and privacy without disrupting the main Blockchain.
Andrew Lee from Purse.io defines Extension Blocks in his article as follows:
“Extension Blocks enable larger blocks through an opt-in second layer for true on-chain capacity increase.”
Lee also draws a table highlighting its benefits:
Charlie Lee took on Twitter to explain that the concept of extension blocks are similar to sidechains and would be integrated into the main chain as an opt-in feature which means that users and wallets could choose to implement it for their transactions or use the general transactions.
He also acknowledges that a lot of work has to be done in order to make sure that the technology works as it is intended to while keeping in mind the risks associated with it.
We still have a lot of work ahead of us. Need to make sure the tech is solid and come up with a plan to test everything and safely upgrade the Litecoin network. When we have a solid plan, we will write up a Litecoin Improvement Proposal (LIP) for the community to critique.
— Charlie Lee [LTC⚡] (@SatoshiLite) February 10, 2019
While technologies like Mimble Wimble provide attractive prospects to Litecoin and eventually maybe Bitcoin, it is important to note that it is still in its nascent phase and a lot of testing and improvements need to happen before it is successfully implemented.
Note: The proposal has not been finalized yet, core developers will be publishing the official LIP (Litecoin improvement proposal) on Github.
Litecoin Summit to be held in October
The second ever Litecoin Summit is set to happen in October this year as a part of the World Crypto Con Blockchain Week in Las Vegas, Nevada. Undoubtedly one of the main topics of discussion this year will be around privacy features and fungibility for Litecoin.
Excited to be hosting the 2nd Annual Litecoin Summit as part of WCCVegas Blockchain Week 2019 in October ⚡️ https://t.co/MsE16oQvH3 More details to come soon! @WorldCryptoCon pic.twitter.com/9DqHpVJKZ2
— Litecoin Foundation (@LTCFoundation) February 10, 2019
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