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Technical

We go beyond the headlines to provide readers with in-depth, expert commentary and explanation of the technical developments that continue to challenge and grow the digital currency and blockchain space.

Technical

CheckLockTimeVerify, or How a Time-Lock Patch Will Boost Bitcoin’s Potential

CheckLockTimeVerify (CLTV) has been merged into Bitcoin Core. This is generally considered great news, because it means that Bitcoin’s potential has improved drastically. In particular, the patch that was proposed by Bitcoin Core developer Peter Todd allows for the proper establishment of payment channels. This means that Bitcoin users will be able to transact cheaper, […]

Nov 4, 2015
Technical

Debunking the 11 Most Stubborn Lightning Network Myths

Earlier this year, Joseph Poon and Thaddeus Dryja released the Lightning Network white paper. In it they theorize how a layer on top of the Bitcoin blockchain can allow for instant and cheap bitcoin transactions, while vastly improving its scalability. As a result of the block-size limit debate, the Lightning Network has been getting a […]

Oct 14, 2015
Technical

Side Chains: The How, The Challenges and the Potential

Adam Back and Austin Hill announced on Let’s Talk Bitcoin their newest project: “sidechains”. The idea, they described, would allow for the existence of alternative blockchains, perhaps with different rules allowing various kinds of additional features or transaction types, but with a currency unit whose value is pegged to that of the bitcoin.

Apr 16, 2014
Technical

Pybitcointools Multisig Tutorial

There has been a large amount of interest in multisignature transaction technology in the past year, especially with the recent announcement of CryptoCorp. If you want to play with multisig technology yourself on the command line, here are the gritty details of how to do it. First, run sudo pip install bitcoin to install the […]

Mar 13, 2014
Technical

Developer’s Introduction to Bitcoin

One of the major advantages of Bitcoin is just how easy it is to work with from a developer’s standpoint. Bitcoin has no third party dependencies, no proprietary APIs, and no rapidly changing interface; all you need is your own favorite programming language, and chances are there is already a simple Bitcoin library that you […]

Jan 2, 2014
Technical

KryptoKit: Easy-to-Use, In-Browser Bitcoin and Messaging for the Masses

The growth of Bitcoin over the past four years, together with the recent storm of political revelations on the part of organizations like Wikileaks and Edward Snowden, has brought a renewed interest into developing and promoting the mass adoption of consumer-grade cryptographic technologies. Bitcoin was arguably the first of the trend, giving the user full […]

Dec 11, 2013
Technical

Introduction to Bitcoin Terminology part I

Cryptography A hash is a function which transforms any number or string into a fixed size output which is impossible to do in reverse without trying all possible inputs. As an example of a simple hash function, consider the square root: the square root of 17202 is easy to calculate – it’s about 131.15639519291463, so […]

Mar 3, 2012
Technical

Client Side Secured Browser Wallets

Client side browser wallets almost exactly resemble managed online wallets in terms of how they appear to the user, but the key difference is how they work behind the scenes. Encrypted backups of the wallet are stored securely by the provider, but the provider has no way of decrypting them – the encryption and decryption […]

Feb 28, 2012