Finding Bitcoin FundingOn July 12, Polylunar outlined in a blog post the launch of its Bitcoin Grants Tracker. The post presents the reasoning behind the tracker but also lays out development for future grants.
Many cryptocurrencies launched ICOs or received large sums of private funding. Bitcoin didn’t. Since its launch in 2009, a small group of developers maintains all of its software. Bitcoin is open-source and decentralized by design. The downside to decentralization is, of course, that no one is in charge of funding.
#Bitcoin Grants Tracker Update – added the following grants:— Polylunar 🐝 🍵 🌊 (@Polylunar_) July 19, 2020
– @jlppfeffer funding @mitDCI
– @jlppfeffer funding Sam Dobson aka @meshcollider
– @milessuter funding Wladimir van der Laan aka @orionwl and Cory Fieldshttps://t.co/5qxj5uh4CT
Outstanding stuff, DCI and John! pic.twitter.com/jixdjEk9Rn
The Advantages of DecentralizationOnly a few developers volunteer to work on Bitcoin’s improvements, and just a handful of groups fund Bitcoin Core development. Some of the most well-known include Chaincode, Blockstream, MIT DCI, Square Crypto, Xapo, BitMEX, and OKCoin, among others. Lack of funding can be a major barrier to the continued development of Bitcoin’s code. Cryptocurrency development holds a certain appeal, however, developers still need to put food on the table. The Bitcoin Grants Tracker may help with this, as now both funders and developers have a dedicated place to find each other. Polylunar explains:
“Initially I was solely interested in finding out how all these great OSS projects like BtcPayServer, Electrum, Wasabi, Samourai, etc. can sustain themselves. Upon finding some with interesting business models that allow them to support themselves, I noticed that there is an ever-increasing amount of funding activity going on but distributed all over Twitter and blogs.”The Grants Tracker is one of a growing number of initiatives in the decentralized funding space. Just recently, BeInCrypto reported that the Human Rights Foundation had revealed more recipients of the latest development fund.
New Money Flows Attract More DevsAlthough not all funding is made public, estimates put donations to developers at more than $1 million. Thanks to the Grants Tracker, the public now has some visibility of the projects funded. During 2020, several open-source developers will receive full salaries as they work on the world’s most popular cryptocurrency.
The grants vary with their targets. Some want to further Bitcoin’s capabilities as a medium of exchange, while others prefer to finance the designers behind the alpha crypto. Some even argue that the Bitcoin Grants Tracker is a textbook example of decentralization: members of an open-source community dedicating their time and energy to improving transparency.
Our first Square Crypto Design Grant goes to Christoph Ono (@GBKS). Christoph will bring structure (albeit the decentralized kind) to the bitcoin design community that we announced last week. As of this tweet, that community has 292 members on Slack. Good luck, buddy 🤣— Square Crypto (@sqcrypto) July 1, 2020
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