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ECC Engineering: 12 months in Evaluation


ECC Engineering is a small, world group targeted on constructing and supporting know-how to offer individuals with entry to a good and open forex — no matter location or demographic. Briefly, our mission is to empower everybody with financial freedom. In 2021, we continued to make super progress in each R&D and engineering, which we really feel will profit Zcash for years to return. 


ECC actively develops and maintains the Zcashd consensus consumer, the official reference implementation of the Zcash Protocol Specification. The Zcashd consumer means that you can ship and obtain ZEC, mine ZEC, and confirm transactions. It’s in use by mining swimming pools and exchanges everywhere in the world.

ECC additionally develops and maintains the Zcash iOS and Android software program improvement kits (SDKs), the ECC reference wallets for iOS and Android, and lightwalletd, a backend service that gives a bandwidth-efficient interface to the Zcash blockchain.

Since 2016, ECC has been on the forefront of groundbreaking analysis and improvement with implications past the cryptocurrency world. Zcash was the primary mission to efficiently implement zero-knowledge proofs, and ECC has established a repute for delivery high quality, production-ready code at common intervals. We launch new variations of Zcashd on roughly six-week launch cycles and have traditionally carried out a median of 1 or two community upgrades (or “onerous forks”) per yr.

Historic and future launch and community improve data can at all times be discovered on our schedule web page.

https://z.money/assist/schedule/

Highlights

We had many successes in 2021 throughout all of our engineering-related groups together with Core, Cellular, and DevSecOps, a staff comprising what was beforehand the separate DevInfra and Safety groups. These successes included the common cadence of releases in addition to breakthrough cryptographic analysis, developments to maneuver the shielded pockets ecosystem ahead, operational enhancements and developments, and a continued demonstration of our dedication to safety greatest practices, guaranteeing secure and safe releases and community upgrades. 

Halo on Zcash

Our focus in 2021 was totally on our upcoming community improve, NU5, the most important community improve in Zcash historical past. We had hoped to activate NU5 in 2021, however elected to delay the activation to satisfy our historic requirements for security and high quality, and to permit loads of time for ecosystem associate testing and integration. NU5 brings Halo to Zcash within the embodiment of the Orchard Shielded Protocol, together with quite a few different enhancements, together with unified addresses, a future-proof tackle format. Halo eliminates the necessity for a trusted setup and is a foundational piece of our scalability initiative, enabling choices reminiscent of transaction and block aggregation, the latter being the cornerstone of succinct blockchains. 

The Filecoin, Ethereum, and ECC collaboration

In September, we introduced a multi-faceted collaboration and analysis settlement with Protocol Labs, the Filecoin Basis, and the Ethereum Basis round Halo 2, together with how the know-how may be used of their respective ecosystems. The collaboration accelerates the event of recursion in Halo 2 and explores choices for the mixing of Halo 2 into the Filecoin and Ethereum ecosystems.

Proof of stake and interop analysis

There’s sturdy public signaling in assist of Zcash transferring to proof of stake and a rising demand for standardized interop touchpoints to allow innovation on high of Zcash. We started early market and technical analysis into proof-of-stake protocols and interop platforms that might doubtlessly be choices for Zcash sooner or later.

Different highlights embrace:

  • Launched seven variations of Zcashd and efficiently activated our sixth community improve, NU5, on testnet.
  • Revealed an replace to the Community Improve Pipeline (NUP), establishing a extra agile course of that also retains the safeguards inherent within the NUP whereas making it simpler for protocol groups exterior of ECC and the Zcash Basis to take part.
  • Lowered Preliminary Block Obtain (IBD) knowledge by greater than 90% by eliminating redundant block header requests and replies.
  • Revealed ECC’s proposed characteristic set for NU5 together with the Orchard Shielded Protocol and unified addresses
  • Shaped a Scientific Advisory Group to assist information the scientific evolution of the Zcash protocol 
  • Designed and launched unified addresses, a future-proof Zcash tackle format that improves usability, will increase the benefit of interoperability, and helps shielding Zcash by default.
  • Established a accountable disclosure course of with key pockets companions, NightHawk and Unstoppable, for vulnerabilities present in our cellular SDKs and reference pockets apps.
  • Carried out a research of decentralized markets on the Zcash blockchain that includes a number of property, in assist of our Zcash Shielded Asset (ZSA) analysis
  • Added auto-shielding to the ECC Pockets SDKs, a UX characteristic that mechanically strikes funds from a clear tackle to a shielded tackle and a element of our Shielded by Default initiative.
  • Activated NU5 on testnet aimed toward enabling current Zcash customers to check their software program and make the mandatory adjustments to be appropriate with the brand new consensus guidelines.
  • Accomplished and revealed the NU5 specification and implementation safety assessments which have been carried out by QEDIT and NCC.  

For a full recap of 2021, together with all our engineering exercise, please browse our Electrical Coin Co. weblog.

Wishing you the most effective for a wholesome, pleased, and profitable 2022!

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