Shortly after the acquisition by Digital Asset Holdings in June, we discontinued supporting the beta version of Hyperledger that was available on Github and we would like to take this opportunity to update you on our planned changes and current status.
COMMITTED TO OPEN SOURCE
Hyperledger has always been open source and as part of Digital Asset we are committed to remaining open source. We believe it’s vital for a piece of common, shared infrastructure to be open to critical inspection. This would allow an open community to benefit from security fixes and functional additions from a wider range of developers than would be available to any single company or group.
MAJOR CHANGES TO HYPERLEDGER
We are making some significant changes from our beta version that will mean the new version will not be compatible with existing implementations. The Hyperledger server is in the process of a complete rehaul to better integrate with the Digital Asset Platform. When the beta was developed we were a small team with limited resources, now we are part of a larger development team with deep experience in developing software for financial institutions.
As such, we have decided to take down the Github repository for the Hyperledger beta as it is no longer a fair reflection of the current state of the code, nor have we been maintaining it since the acquisition. The new version of Hyperledger is being developed with a small group of strategic partners until it is stable, at which point it will be open sourced once again under the Apache 2.0 licence and then moved to an independent software foundation.
We recommend anyone experimenting with the current beta version of Hyperledger get in touch so we can assist as much as possible in the transition. We will of course keep everyone on this mailing list notified as new versions are available.
SWITCHING TO JAVA/SCALA
Hyperledger is being rewritten from Erlang and Elixir to Java and Scala to better integrate with the existing Digital Asset Platform and make it easier for financial institutions to deploy and develop.
UTILIZING THE UTXO TRANSFER MODEL
We are also switching from our simplistic notion of accounts and balances to adopt to de facto standard of the Bitcoin UTXO model, lightly modified. While Hyperledger does not use Bitcoin in any way, the Bitcoin system is still extremely large and innovative, with hundreds of millions of dollars invested. By adopting the Bitcoin transaction model as standard, users of Hyperledger will benefit from innovation in Bitcoin and vice versa, as well as making Hyperledger more interoperable.
IMPROVED TRANSACTION PRIVACY
As part of updating the transaction model, we have started work on implementing sophisticated cryptographic techniques to allow transaction processors to validate transactions without knowing the counterparties involved in the transfer, how much is being transferred, or what asset the transfer is denominated in. This allows multiple parties to engage in a shared, replicated ledger with only the relevant counterparties and authorized third parties able to view confidential trade information.
DIGITAL ASSET FULL STACK SOLUTION
Hyperledger is only one piece of the Digital Asset Platform. The core of Digital Asset’s solutions that support Hyperledger, other distributed ledgers, and legacy infrastructure, have been under development for multiple man years and are approaching being production ready.
HIGH LEVEL APIS
Developers can quickly and easily build applications on top of distributed ledgers such as Hyperledger by interacting with the Digital Asset Platform via expressive APIs and a comprehensive SDK.
We are actively working with financial institutions on a multitude of Proof of Concepts, Pilots, and jointly developed products that will go to market in 2016. If you are at a financial institution looking to leverage this technology in wholesale financial markets, please get in touch.