Linux on Bitcoin? Open-source framework BitVMX envisions BTC-powered programs

Bitcoin experts are developing a fresh open-source project named BitVMX. This innovative platform aims to enable the creation and execution of intricate apps and features directly on Bitcoin’s fundamental level, ensuring enhanced security.

BitVMX, modeled after Robin Linus’s BitVM project, is supported by RootstockLabs, a prominent Bitcoin layer-2 technology company. The objective of this initiative is to design an open-source and transparent framework, free from the constraints of specific sidechains, for building applications based on Bitcoin.

At an exclusive interview with CryptoMoon, Sergio Demian Lerner, the chief scientist of RootstockLabs, shared insights about the BitVMX initiative. This noteworthy project will make its grand entrance at the Bitcoin++ Austin conference together with the release of its white paper.

Linux on Bitcoin? Open-source framework BitVMX envisions BTC-powered programs

Lerner is renowned for studying the signs that reveal the specific hardware used by Satoshi Nakamoto during the initial phase of Bitcoin mining, an topic that was featured in CryptoMoon Magazine in the year 2021.

BitVMX wants to power programs on Bitcoin

In simpler terms, BitVMX enables funds to be secured in a transaction output called Unspent Output (UTXO), with a spending condition linked to the outcome of a pre-assigned program’s execution. Lerner explained that the program should be established when the UTXO is initiated, but the input for the program isn’t necessary at that time.

The scientist expressed that the framework’s capabilities are extensive and could drive numerous apps and features.

“The incredible thing about BitVMX is that it essentially allows developers to run anything on Bitcoin, even Linux.”

Lerner proposed that BitVMX serves as the engine for linking Bitcoin to ancillary chains such as Rootstock. This connection enables one-way transfer of BTC, granting access to utilizing Bitcoin in engaging with decentralized apps (DApps) and other intelligent contracts.

An alternative application could involve creating oracle aggregators that gather information from multiple sources, confirm its accuracy, and then deposit the verified data onto the Bitcoin blockchain using an automatic and distributed process.

BitVMX can now verify zk-SNARK and zk-STARK proofs directly on the Bitcoin network, expanding its capabilities. This feature enables new possibilities like confidential transactions (zero-knowledge contingent payments) and self-governing bug bounty platforms.

Bitcoin L2 criticisms

Members of the Bitcoin community have expressed concerns over the rising number of startup initiatives promoting Bitcoin L2s (Layer 2 solutions) that allegedly function directly on the blockchain, using more straightforward language: Bitcoin enthusiasts are speaking out against the growing trend of marketing strategies by startups for Bitcoin L2 projects, which claim to run natively on the Bitcoin network.

Lerner highlighted that BitVMX isn’t linked to any token event, and it facilitates building dependable and more dispersed connections devoid of relying on security in external tokens through its framework.

Linux on Bitcoin? Open-source framework BitVMX envisions BTC-powered programs

A computer scientist added that Rootstock Labs holds the view that a Bitcoin L2 (Layer 2) should meet uncomplicated standards.

“It must use BTC as its native asset and as a settlement mechanism to enforce transactions and demonstrate a functional dependence on Bitcoin. Everything else is just affinity marketing.”

Lerner pointed out that dishonest initiatives, which allegedly rely on Bitcoin, have tarnished every bull market. He advises users to trust tried-and-true methods such as the Lightning Network, Liquid, and Rootstock instead of putting their Bitcoin savings at risk with unproven or obscure projects boasting deep pockets and alluring advertising campaigns.

Shifting the narrative for Bitcoin’s functionality

The BitVMX initiative acknowledges the groundwork laid by Robin Linus’ BitVM framework. It aims to expand upon the theoretical foundation of BitVM, which employs a intricate circuit made up of combinatorial logic and Merkle trees of considerable size for gate-level verification.

BitVMX emphasizes simplicity by carrying out central processing unit tasks with Bitcoin script opcodes instead. According to Lerner, this improvement makes it more effective for practical applications and enables possibilities like operating sidechain light clients and verifying through zk-SNARKS.

The head scientist described how the framework effectively and safely introduces complex computations to Bitcoin, expanding its capabilities with various new applications.

In simpler terms, Lerner explained that when it comes to disputable computation, no calculation takes place on the blockchain if there’s an agreement among involved parties regarding the outcome.

If there’s a disagreement between parties, an on-chain process initiates to resolve the dispute in a formal and efficient manner. In the least favorable situation, only one contested element, such as a gate, wire, or calculation step, undergoes verification on the blockchain.

Lerner imagines BitVMX sparking a fresh generation of Bitcoin developers with its expanded capabilities. He emphasized the importance of this framework in adding more intricate spending restrictions to Bitcoin’s fundamental layer.

A computer scientist noted that Bitcoin’s programming language for scripts is missing essential commands, which could make BitVMX less expensive and more effective if they were included.

Instead of asking if Bitcoin is capable of doing X, it’s more about figuring out how well Bitcoin can perform X, according to Lerner.

A changing perspective on Bitcoin’s development might lead to the reintroduction of opcodes like OP_MUL and OP_CAT at a faster pace.

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2024-04-24 16:16