Blockstream Releases Lightning Upgrade With New ‘Plugin’ Functionality
Alyssa Hertig's original article for www.coindesk.com reduced by 57%
New improvements to an existing code repository are set to make it easier for developers to build their own features into bitcoin's lightning network, the in-progress tech layer many see as the cryptocurrency's best hope for its use in payments. Announced Thursday, Blockstream is making the largest upgrade to its c-lightning software in eight months, releasing a new version that features a batch of upgrades. Already, developers are already proving eager to build lightning network apps - as examples, a seven-year-old built a zombie hunting game that takes bitcoin lightning payments, and as of last week, it's even possible to order pizza courtesy of a crafty custom website.
This includes a small "Monitoring" tool that runs alongside a node "Checking if it's alive and kicking," as well as a "Probing" plugin that pings other random lightning nodes on the network to see how well other nodes react, helping developers determine which parts of the network are still rickety. Beyond 0.7, the developers have lots of other ideas for improving the technology down the road, including getting a start on the new lightning 1.1 spec dreamed up at a developer summit in Adelaide, Australia, and outlining new features that will make payments more user-friendly. These features are really needed to make lightning easier to use.
Russell pointed to the lightning torch, a popular grassroots game where users have been passing around a lightning payment, adding a little to it each time it's passed.
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