Blockstream’s Andrew Poelstra To Improve Bitcoin’s Transaction Privacy: Bulletproofs


Andrew Poelstra, important mathematician and Blockstream research director says that companies are gathering a lot of information from us in order to boost their benefits without us acknowledging it.

Security experts are worried about the future of privacy because AI systems may be able to predict what people will be doing in the future according to past records. And this is a very big problem.

In order to enhance users’ privacy, this mathematician is connecting privacy with online money. Mr. Poelstra is searching a way to formulate mathematical equations and write code that would be able to hide Bitccoin’s trails. In this way, every time a user will be sending or receiving Bitcoin the data will remain private so as to protect users’ privacy.

Those users that do not take special measures can leave all the information about their transactions behind.

He commented to CoinDesk about this situation:

“Those trails that no one thinks about, I wish that they weren’t there. I would hope I’m not leaving one and I would hope that no one that I love is leaving one. That’s who I’m working for.”

Poelstra seems to show a different point of view to those that are always searching for extreme privacy. He claims that the most important is family and friends, no other ideals.

He has been working in a project that is called ‘scriptless scripts,’ and allows for bitcoin smart contracts that do not use important amounts of data. Other complex smart contracts usually require a little bit more storage. At the same time that they offer the possibility to perform complicated transactions, they become a problem for smart contract platforms.

A cryptocurrency project known as mimblewimble has been also struggling with the exact tradeoff. But for him, it was possible to find a way to scale and increase privacy features. On top of the smart contract benefits that mimblewimble implemented, the scalability and privacy advantages were also there.

According to Mr. Poelstra scriptless scripts are able to improve the privacy of lightning payments. LN is a second layer scaling technology that works outside the original bitcoin network.

The mathematician explains that it is not necessary to publish all the details of the payment channels once you inform the network all the transactions you did outside of it.

Scriptless Scripts require Schnorr signatures, a technology that was pioneered by Pieter Wuille, and to which Poelstra contributed to. As he explains, this technology would have its biggest impact once it will be combined with other technical improvements and technologies.

Poelstra would like to see Scriptless Scripts to work with the commented Taproot improvement, created by Greg Maxwell, an important bitcoin contributor. In this way, the lightning network would get even more private making all bitcoin transactions look the same.

Developers of the core protocol of bitcoin and other experts are working in order to enhance privacy settings for users.And because that’s happening, Poelstra thinks there’s a ‘whole pile’ of other promising ways to shield several pieces of bitcoin.

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