Zilliqa Update #4–March 16

Greetings everyone! Time is flying by fast as we are already on our 4th project update since completing our TGE. We’ve been very busy and are excited to be on track to release the initial version of our blockchain testnet by the end of this month.

Our goal is to build a new generation of public blockchain platform that is scalable and also secure. This is actually a very difficult proposition, but we strongly believe our technology will be a solution that provides a viable balance between the two. Most of all, though, our team at Zilliqa is made up of some of the top minds in blockchain, business, and finance and for that reason we have expectations that our technology will become an important blockchain infrastructure for the next generation of decentralized applications.

As always, to learn more about Zilliqa or to discuss technical aspects of our project, feel free to connect with us in any of our official channels below:

Telegram: https://t.me/zilliqachat

Slack: https://invite.zilliqa.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/zilliqa

Reddit: https://www.reddit.com/r/zilliqa/

Github: https://github.com/Zilliqa/zilliqa

Gitter: https://gitter.im/Zilliqa/

Community Updates

Infographic Contest

Earlier this month we announced the Zilliqa Infographic Contest and since then we’ve seen an increased interest in the technology behind Zilliqa. We’ve received some amazing submissions so far, but please keep them coming!

You have until March 25 and can potentially win a number of great prizes.

  • First prize: 1 winner
    Round trip ticket to Singapore, in-person meeting and dinner with the Zilliqa team and 200,000 ZILs.
  • Second prize: 2 winners — 50,000 ZILs each.
  • Third prize: 5 winners — 15,000 ZILs each.

To participate, create your infographic and tweet it to #zilliqacontest. Multiple entries are welcome!

Past events

Over the past two weeks we have been to many events and meetings, mostly throughout Asia.

We were in Taipei for the Bitzantin Crypto Cafe Opening on March 6 and also held a Zilliqa meetup.

We embarked on our China tour this week with a packed schedule of business meetings, campus outreach events and meetups.

Xinshu was back at his alma mater East China Normal University in Shanghai where he gave a talk to a packed lecture theatre of Computer Science students.

Xinshu was also named an industry mentor there.

We also met with renowned venture capitalist, technology executive, writer, and computer scientist Kaifu Lee in Beijing.

Conducted a sharing session at Standard Chartered Bank in Tianjin.

And held a large-scale meetup in Beijing.

We are immensely excited about the opportunities in China and look forward to furthering these conversations we’ve had over the last week.

Back in Singapore, our Head of Technology Yaoqi presented at the “Everyone is talking about Blockchain 2018” event at the Nanyang Technological University.

And finally, we hosted a meeting in our offices in Singapore with Vitalik Buterin and his team to discuss the challenges of sharding and scalability for a public blockchain.

Upcoming Events

Amrit and Saiba will be in Europe over the next week. Do attend one of these sessions if you are in town!

Tech Updates

We are preparing for the release of Zilliqa testnet v1.0 by the end of March. In the past two weeks we have been working in parallel on three related components of the project, namely, the wallet, the core protocol and the integration of the two.

1) Wallet: We have been building our own wallet. It implements full-fledged features of Schnorr signature and serialization in JavaScript. The wallet can generate public/private key pairs, as well as perform Schnorr signing/verification on the client side, which can be recognized by the C++ implementation run by the network. These features will enable a user to easily create a Zilliqa account and issue a transaction signed by her private key. As an extra feature, the user will also be able to export/import the keys via a passphrase for the account, a functionality available in most popular wallets (e.g., myetherwallet). A summary of the tasks accomplished on the wallet side is given below:

  • Customization of Schnorr signature algorithm in JavaScript to be consistent with our whitepaper.
  • Public/private key pair generation in JavaScript compatible with the implementation in C++.
  • Schnorr signing and verification in JavaScript compatible with the implementation in C++.

2) Core protocol: On the core protocol side, we have been working on the component that facilitates new nodes to join the network. We have optimized the bootstrap for large-scale testing and have incorporated several enhancements for network synchronization. These allow the network to support more nodes to join the system in parallel. We have also fixed several issues and refactored the code for some components for performance improvements. A summary of the tasks accomplished on the core protocol side is given below:

  • Large scale testing for new node joining
  • Changed the sync process to fetch DS blocks and DS information
  • New node will attempt to perform PoW1 or PoW2 instead of just PoW1
  • Adjusted the new node’s’ polling time interval
  • Optimization of compilation workflow and process
  • Updated local new node joining script from 1 node to 5 nodes
  • Removal of unused stacktrace function
  • Code cleanup and add more loggers (where necessary)

3) Integration: We’ve integrated wallet, JSON-RPC server and testnet. In order to ensure that the wallet can easily connect with the network, we host a JSON-RPC server on lookup nodes. The server deserializes the transaction sent from a wallet, verifies it with the sender’s public key and further transfers it to multiple corresponding shard nodes. The particular shard will process the transaction, reach an agreement on the same set of valid transactions, and send the generated micro block to DS shard. DS shard aggregates multiple microblocks and produces a final block to broadcast to each shard. At the end, all nodes in the network will learn that the transaction from the wallet is written into the blockchain. With this integration, a user can check its account’s balance from our wallet. This feature is provided by the JavaScript library, which fetches the data from the JSON-RPC server. A summary of the tasks accomplished on the integration component is given below:

  • Integration of wallet, JSON-RPC server and testnet.
  • Implementation of transaction serialization including Schnorr signature in JavaScript.
  • Refactoring the implementation of sending transactions from wallets and JSON-RPC server
  • Loading UI while waiting for JSON import/export
  • Fixed pointer issues in the JSON-RPC server


En Hui Ong, a specialist in financial products, has officially joined Zilliqa as Head of Business Development. Previously with BlackRock and hired from JPMorgan, En Hui will transition her career from financial services to blockchain to help Zilliqa bring its technology to major commercial partners in the coming year.

En Hui Ong, Head of Business Development

En Hui’s experience in the financial sector will open new avenues for the project. She will be a fantastic fit and we are thrilled to have her. When we asked why she chose to join us, she said: “The biggest draw for me is the team. In blockchain, a young and evolving space, the Zilliqa team is very different from most projects out there. The team is tight knit, mostly from research backgrounds, and I value the professionalism and integrity that they stand for. That’s what makes Zilliqa special and why I chose to join.”

New Advisors

Smart contracts experts, Dr. Ilya Sergey and Evan Cheng, have joined Zilliqa as advisors to provide expert guidance on smart contract development.

Dr. Ilya Sergey is currently an Assistant Professor of Computer Science at University College London (UCL) and is a distinguished researcher in the area of programming languages, program analysis, and formal verification.

He has already worked alongside members of the Zilliqa team on numerous projects, including Scilla, a new verification-friendly smart contract language that solves many of the security issues of existing smart contract languages.

Evan Cheng is the ACM Software System Award winner for his contribution to LLVM (2012) and is currently an Engineering Director at Facebook, where he oversees development of programming languages, runtimes, and compilers. He is a veteran in the broad field of programming languages, Evan’s extensive practical experience in building the infrastructure, toolchain, and applications for different programming languages will add significant strength to the Zilliqa team.

Zilliqa in the Press

Some of the mentions of Zilliqa over the past two weeks in the media.