Updated: March 30, 2022

What the Voltage Crew Built On #FOSSFriday #2

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Key Takeaways

Voltage hosts a FOSSFriday every other Friday where every Voltage employee picks an open source project and works on it, instead of their usual day-to-day duties.

In Bitcoinland, open source is kind of important. Bitcoin runs on open source projects, from Bitcoin Core, to all the Lightning Network implementations (which help to speed up and scale bitcoin payments). And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

As it’s so important, Voltage hosts a FOSS Friday every other Friday where every Voltage employee picks an open source project and works on it, instead of their usual day-to-day duties. Check out a previous blog post to learn more about the program.

Here’s what our hella smart team of nerds worked on this week.

Sensei is a newer lightning node project built on LDK and BDK, which makes it easy to spin up non-custodial nodes for users who want to use the lightning network for payments. Since Sensei currently only supports the Sqlite database, which generally isn’t great for production-grade projects, backend engineer Alex started working on making it possible to connect to other databases in the project.

Backend engineer Bob worked on his SlushPool Mining Profitability project, the backend for a dashboard which shows profitability of mining using data from the mining pool SlushPool. It shows the date a user is expected to breakeven from the startup costs required to mine. 

Along the same lines, frontend engineers Paul and Adrien then teamed up with Bob to create an “opportunity cost” calculator. Bitcoiners have different ideas of the “best” way to accumulate bitcoins. For example, some bitcoiners choose to mine their bitcoins with hardware at home, while others dollar-cost average it. The trio is working on an app that aims to show which method leads to the most profit in the end.

The generated graph will look something like this:

VP of Marketing Bobby is working on getting an open-source operating system running on his phone and building a “privacy phone” with apps such as the privacy-minded bitcoin wallet Samourai on it.

VP of Engineering Justin has been learning Rust to understand LDK. He also verified that all the millisatoshis that fit into 21 million bitcoin, will fit into a u64 — by one order of magnitude *gasping emoji*

Head of Business Development Kyle started looking into contributing to the unified bitcoin QR code website showing which bitcoin exchanges are (and aren’t) using a Bitcoin Unified QR code that ties on-chain transaction and lightning transaction QR codes into one.

Engineer Sam has been working on SeedSigner, an open-source hardware device for signing multi-sig transactions. He’s been working on a SeedSigner emulator, that functions like the hardware, and can be used for testing the signer out. He got the program working on Tails, an operating system with better privacy, and connects to the Internet via privacy network Tor.

The Eye of Satoshi AKA TEOS (named of course after the all-seeing Eye of Sauron in Lord of the Rings) is an in-progress Watchtower project for the lightning network. A watchtower adds extra protection for lightning users by monitoring the latest bitcoin transactions for breaches resulting in a user being cheated. Engineer Taylor has been working on getting Tor to work with TEOS, so that the tower’s public API can run behind a hidden service, the request will be forwarded to the public API.

Also working on The Eye of Satoshi, engineer Alyssa started working on adding authentication to the tower’s API, since there isn’t any yet. Anyone with a connection to the tower could have access to privileges they shouldn’t have, such as deleting all the appointments that need to be watched. That isn’t good. So authentication FTW.

That’s all for this FOSS Friday and we’ll post the results of our next one. Come join our Discord to learn more about Voltage and meet some of the awesome community members.

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