Litecoin’s founder Charlie Lee stated that they will be implementing the Grin & Beam MimbleWimble protocol on Litecoin’s blockchain. The update will come sometime in 2019, and it will be applied by a soft-fork.
According to this post, MimbleWimble will be used to add privacy and fungibility to Litecoin by allowing on-chain conversion of regular LTC into a Mimblewimble variant of LTC and vice versa. Upon such conversion, it will be possible to transact with Mimblewimble LTC in complete confidentiality. This will also add fungibility to Litecoin. Something fungible can be exchanged for something else of the same kind. According to Charlie Lee, fungibility is the only property of sound money that is missing from Bitcoin & Litecoin.
Mimblewimble transactions are a derivation of another transaction type known as confidential transactions. In a confidential transaction, only the two parties involved know the amount of bitcoins being transacted, therefore onlookers cannot know the exact amount but can verify the transaction on the blockchain. Mimblewimble transactions function in a similar way, except, the recipient of a transaction randomly selects a range of blinding factors provided by the sender, which serve as a proof of ownership. Due to the obfuscation of inputs and outputs, as well as the elimination of public addresses in Mimblewimble transactions, true anonymity is achieved. In addition, MimbleWimble can improve scalability, by eliminating old and unnecessary transactions on the blockchain to improve efficiency. It removes inputs on the blockchain by mixing intermediary transactions together so that the size of the blockchain is significantly reduced.
Mimblewimble is the name of a spell used to tongue-tie victims in Harry Potter. It renders the target unable to talk or to make an incantation. The protocol was created by an anonymous user by the pseudonym, Tom Elvis Jedusor (Voldemort’s name in the French edition of the book).
The cooperation between Litecoin and Beam will be done in an open source manner. Below there’s a tweet by Charlie Lee mentioning the partnership between the two projects.
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