It’s been some time since our last update, and we’ve got a lot to report! Starting today, Particl development updates will be replaced by monthly project updates to cover a broader range of things that have been happening, are happening, and will be happening to the project as a whole. They will be published at a regular schedule on the fourth Thursday of every month.
Today marks this first such project update, and it’s one that is particularly important given the load of information contained in this blog post. So without further ado, let’s dive right into it.
Table of Content
- Tecnovert Update
- Particl V3 Progress
- In-app Swap Module
- Team Update
- CCS System
- Revamped Particl Wiki
- What’s Coming
Tecnovert & Core Update
As you know, most of the current development efforts have been focused on bringing to life the long-anticipated Particl V3 release. However, Tecnovert, Particl’s lead cryptographer, has been working on other stuff in the meantime.
XMR — PART Atomic Swap
Implementation of the h4sh3d Bitcoin-Monero Cross-chain Atomic Swap protocol…
Not too long ago, he released the xmrswap protocol which allows XMR and PART to be exchanged via atomic swaps. For those who don’t know, atomic swaps are contracts of exchange and executed between two users without the assistance of any third-party. They are uncensorable, private, and fully decentralized swaps of value from one cryptocurrency to the other.
Particl Core 0.21.1.0
He has also put a lot of work into updating the current Particl Core version (0.19) to the latest Bitcoin version (0.21). Since it has been some time since the latest Core update, it’s taken a significant amount of work to complete but it was well worth it due to what’s being introduced by it.
On Monday the 23rd of November, 2020, Tecnovert has finally pre-released Particl Core 0.21.1.0 on mainnet. We highly recommend downloading and installing the new core version and testing it out. That’ll provide valuable feedback to Tecnovert which he’ll be able to use to finish off the release and push it as a full release.
Note: This release re-introduces 32bit builds which have been requested by some community members. If you happen to be one of those, please download and test these in your environment and report back to the #Development channel.
Upgrading to the newest core version of Particl introduces the required code for Taproot to make its way onto Particl.
Taproot is a form of transaction based on “MAST”, but with a little tweak, that allows you to make a complicated conditional transaction (i.e. atomic swap) look like a typical transaction. In Particl’s case, this new feature is specially intended to increase the privacy level of atomic swaps by having them look like any other regular transaction to the outside observer. Check this article from CoinDesk for more information about this new protocol improvement.
Particl’s invaluable core developer Kewde has recently been working on adding support for Blockbook, a Trezor-compatible block explorer with some extra features. The support should be available within the new few days now, watch for any Particl.news blog post about it in the coming days.
Particl Marketplace (V3)
In reality, there is very little left to do before the V3 release is ready for public testing.
- The V3 market codebase has recently been pushed on Github and is now available for public audit. The codebase is complete with all V3 additions and refactored code in place. You can follow its progress and check out the changes here: https://github.com/particl/particl-market/commits/develop
- During the internal round of testing that’s been going for a couple of weeks now, a bunch of new issues related to the Windows build have popped up and required developers to allocate extra time to them. They have all been resolved as of last week, but please be on the lookout for any Windows-related issues when testing Particl V3 on Windows.
- It was announced two weeks ago that only notifications and comments needed to be completed before the public release of testnet builds. As of today, it can be reported that the notifications have been fully completed and are currently being tested in recent internal builds.
- Some issues have arisen concerning the buyflow integration of comments (buyer/seller communication). As the changes required to fix the problem may take some time, the team is exploring releasing the testnet build without this portion of the comment feature for now and integrating it either during public testnet or as a V3.1 release.
- Current builds have been tested quite extensively by now. The public testnet is expected to go very smoothly and be short in duration before the release can move up onto the mainnet.
In-app Swap Module
Particl’s SMSG bot framework has been significantly improved, but the in-app swap module still requires a bit of work for it to be completely finished off. Additionally, some of Particl’s swap partners (SimpleSwap, StealthEX, and SwapSpace) have been experiencing issues with the PART pair and are actively working on bringing back up.
The Particl team and these teams have been in constant communication for a while now. The issue is related to Bittrex which has recently changed the terms of how they want to work with swap businesses using their APIs. The exchanges are stating that they are working on solutions to bring PART back up on the exchanges, but it may take some time.
For this reason, the in-app swap module may unfortunately not be part of the initial V3 release and may, instead, be pushed to the 3.1 release or whenever PART gets back up on these exchanges. Exactly when this happens is yet to be determined but is partly dependent on factors external to Particl.
A few weeks ago and effective at that time, the Particl team and Foundation mutually agreed to take proactive measures to ensure the continued development of the project while at the same time cutting down the costs to the minimum.
Cutting Down on the Costs
As a result, all salaried Particl team members have agreed to momentarily not take a salary while at the same time pledging to continue the development of the project and its roadmap.
This is only possible thanks to the passion of each Particl team member and their commitment to Particl’s mission of a more fair, free, and secure environment of eCommerce.
What does this change?
In reality, this won’t change much in the sense that the roadmap will still be worked on as planned earlier this year. It does, however, change how the team will approach tackling the roadmap items needed to complete. Here are a few expected changes as a result of this new reality.
- The project will be managed a bit differently in the background with a focus on maximum cost reduction. This includes using different tools, streamlining processes, and refocusing the development strategy of the project. This may not cause a lot of visible changes to the outside environment but will be key to the continued success of the project and the reduction of its costs.
- Some independent initiatives may be pushed by team members, their partners, or outside contractors through the CCS system. The Particl team highly encourages and supports community members making their own proposals.
- Particl team members may independently work with or help different projects which are working on directly expanding Particl’s ecosystem. These may include various independent initiatives, Particl-based applications or businesses, service providers, and etc. Over the past few weeks, there has been a lot brewing in that important regard which has kept some of Particl team members very busy. More details on the topic will be provided at a later date.
Important Focus on CCS
The Particl team has recently released the CCS, a community crowdfunding tool. Moving forward, the team may use this system to push independent initiatives or community votes. The team strongly recommends the community to also come up with its own initiatives to further decentralize the evolution of the Particl ecosystem and stimulate its economy.
If you have any ideas or proposals, don’t hesitate to reach out to fellow Particl community or team members for help. The CCS is the perfect system to kickstart Particl’s economy and will prove very useful over time.
Revamped Particl Wiki
The Particl Wiki has recently been significantly improved thanks to the incredible work done by Allien, Particl’s UI/UX Lead. It features a much better navigation/structure and provides a lot of technical documentation and guides. The Particl Wiki, which focused on the advanced user, serves as a great complement to the incoming Particl Academy which will instead focus on the “general user” by making all the information as simple to follow and easy to understand as possible.
There are a lot of really great things coming for Particl. Whereas 2020 has been a significant development-focused year for Particl, mainly because the great majority of the time has been spent on Particl’s massive V3 update, 2021 should feel more active in terms of outreach and marketing efforts towards vendors and users!
Here are some of what you can expect from Particl in the next couple of weeks.
- The first public testnet build should be ready and made available in a very short amount of time. You’ll then be able to test and play around with Particl V3 for the first time, on testnet.
- Particl.news has been completely rebranded and will launch in a few days. Particl’s official blog has moved from Medium onto Ghost. The move brings on added functionality for blog posts, a better user experience, and one that is more tailored to Particl.
- The Particl Academy will launch and provide very easy to understand tutorials, guides, and walk-through guides for people to quickly understand how to use Particl. The academy will release a few days after the public testnet build goes live and contains a massive amount of content.
- More vendor and customer outreach and onboarding efforts will start once Particl V3 is live. Whereas 2020 was almost exclusively focused on BUIDL, 2021 will be much more about the adoption of the marketplace.
- An automated system to seed the marketplace with thousands of listings will be announced in the next coming days and will be pushed to the CCS for funding. This initiative is a side-project of Particl team members Juha Kovanen and Cryptoguard and serves many different purposes at once. It is also intended to serve as an example for a typical proposal that anyone in the community could come up with and will jumpstart the adoption of Particl Marketplace and the CCS.
- The Particl team will go through a “monitoring” phase for about a month or so following the mainnet release of V3. This will allow them to detect and fix bugs, collect feedback from the community, apply them to Particl V3.1, and set the ground to establish the development priorities for 2021 and onward.
- The website will be entirely rebranded and released to support the V3 release and improve the communication of Particl’s mission, products, and brand. Depending on how fast Particl V3 moves from testnet to mainnet, the rebrand of the website may go live only after the mainnet release.
The Wait is Almost Over
This week, what is supposed to be the last internal build before the public testnet release has been compiled and been going through one final internal testing round.
That means that the almost year-long wait is almost over! Starting with the testnet release, a lot of exciting stuff will start coming out and a lot of what the team has been quietly working on in the background will be revealed. As always, we don’t want to commit to a specific date or ETA for release, but that information alone should give you a pretty good idea of where we stand.
For this reason, stay eyes on the target and don’t miss the announcement of the public testnet coming shortly on Particl.news!
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