Zcash Developers Update 6-9-17


By Paige Peterson

These updates are now categorized by working groups.

Progress has been made for a few of the working groups this past week but we’re still hoping to encourage others to take on coordination of existing and proposed groups. If you’re interested in becoming a coordinator, note taker or member of one of the working groups (listed above), certainly get in touch. The minimum goal is to have one meeting per month per group with a status report about the recent progress made.

We made progress on discussing the Sapling crypto upgrade this week, the coordinator lead an informational meeting to highlight the plans and desired features for the upgrade to Zcash employees and external interested parties who reached out to us about attending. You can check out the agenda and notes for the meeting for details about what was discussed.

Much of the focus for Sapling is on improving efficiency of the zero-knowledge components and usability of shielded addresses including private multi-sig, address viewing keys, user-issued tokens, etc. There’s a lot of work to be done here and the Sapling working group have already had a follow up meeting to talk about technical requirements and design.

Progress on Sapling can be tracked in the associated Github project.

We missed our deadline for the 1.0.10 CI deployment due to lack of time. We’ll continue working towards completing the tickets included in that milestone and provide an update next week.

The [1.0.10 release(https://github.com/zcash/zcash/milestone/54) is still on track for which we’ll be maintaining a focus on security and stability and continuous improvement priorities.

Development infrastructure:
As mentioned above, this seemed to be a relatively slow week for infrastructure development but you can keep track of progress of these tickets in the dev infrastructure project.

Network infrastructure:
Further discussions and progress were made on mempool eviction policies and associated network performance improvements. Relevant tickets for this task are #2414, #2344, #2384 and #2342 (with associated PR 2343).

Berkeley DB replacement:
This working group made progress this week on cataloging data stored in leveldb and bdb.

The database improvement project is where relevant tickets can be tracked.

We created a new Github project called Beswick which will be the codename for improving the z_sendmany RPC and new RPCs such as z_decryptsinceblock.

We made futher progress on the UX ecosystem research project which includes studying two Zcash supporting wallets and documenting certain actions such as sending/receiving ZEC and making a purchase. At the conclusion of this project, we’ll have public reports to share which will not only benefit Zcash developers but also the greater cryptocurrency ecosystem. We’re learning a lot with this project and are excited to share our findings.

The zcash-primitives-js library saw it’s first official version released this week and added to the payment offloading proof of concept.

The final installment of the zk-SNARK technical explainers was released this week: Explaining SNARKs Part VII: Pairings of Elliptic Curves.

We also just published Pay-to-sudoku Revisited. PTS is a project which allows a verifier to pay a prover for knowing the solution to a given sudoku puzzle without the solution itself being revealed using zero-knowledge contingent payment (ZKCP), an invention by Greg Maxwell.

We’re also making progress on a central documentation source which will merge the various Github wiki’s, /doc files in zcashd and some information on https://z.cash. More details next week!