US Defense Bill Can Give Boost to Blockchain

US defense spending bill can give a big push for blockchain adoption across U.S. government agencies
23 November 2017   463

Part of a larger bill called the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), the Modernizing Government Technology Act (MGT) will allow the public sector to redirect cost savings (which normally must be returned to the Treasury Department) into internal working capital funds that can be used to upgrade their IT systems. This is reported by the CoinDesk.

Projects that fall into one of three buckets: cybersecurity, migrating legacy systems to the cloud and "other innovative platforms and technologies" will be able to use the working capital funds of agencies for modernization. 

Blockchain is not explicitly mentioned in MGT's text. But it fits greatly law's parameters and objectives to advance the technology beyond the proof-of-concept stage at the agency level.

Blockchain was clearly one of the technological capabilities that Congress meant for agencies to look at, and what they were trying to do was create dollars with some flexibility to them so that agencies would have their own discretion on what they invest in.
 

Trey Hodgkins

Senior vice president of public sector, Information Technology Industry Council in Washington, D.C.

A lot of companies echoed Hodgkins' optimism that the act could provide a way for enterprise blockchain services on the governmental level.

We are excited about the MGT Act because it provides incentives to federal agencies to move away from high-cost, low performing legacy systems toward new technologies, like blockchain and smart contracts. 
 

Todd Miller

U.S. markets lead, ChromaWay

But even if MGT provides a window of opportunity for blockchain within government "modernization" projects, the technology must demonstrate it has utility at an enterprise level before agencies can fully embrace it.

Government agencies are, after all, still grappling with the cybersecurity risks associated with blockchain.

Ethereum Scaling Solution Raiden to Launch Last Testnet

As noted by the developers, after implementing the new solution, the Ethereum network will be able to provide more than a million transactions per second
20 July 2018   162

On Thursday, July 19, at the Dappcon developer conference in Berlin, the last test network of Raiden for the Ethereum blockchain was launched, CoinDesk reports.

The release includes a minimal implementation of the scaling solution, which will allow the transfer of Ethereum tokens outside of the main blockchain. This is the last test phase before the introduction of technology into the core network of Ethereum.

It's the first step towards going to the mainnet. We really want people to really test this so we have a user interface, we have an API and we've created an open Github for everything they could find, so if we go hopefully bug-free on the mainnet.
 

Lefteris Karapetsas

Core Developer, Raiden

According to him, the new release represents an early implementation for the core network and contains a new rewritten code of smart contracts and payment channels that can be restored in case of unintended closure.

Also, Karapetsas urged developers to join the test network to help detect possible bugs, adding that a bounty program will be launched to encourage this activity.

The release date for the main network has not yet been assigned, but the developers intend to follow this earlier promise and launch Raiden this summer.

Karapetsas also promised to publish regular updates and code optimizations after the full release, adding that Raiden will complement other Ethereum scaling solutions that are currently being developed.

Raiden is essentially the payment channel network for ethereum, it's supposed to help us scale token transfers. The long term goal would be to have people use Raiden from a mobile device and be able to make off-chain token transfers just from their phone. That would be the long term vision, it would probably work in combination with various scaling solutions, sharding, plasma, a sort of hybrid.
 

Lefteris Karapetsas

Core Developer, Raiden

Raiden is developing from the 2015 and is written mostly on Python. The project is much like the Lightning Network. As noted by the developers, after implementing the new solution, the Ethereum network will be able to provide more than a million transactions per second.