As we pass the midway point of 2022, and Brink turns 2 years old, a lot has happened in the Bitcoin ecosystem. Brink is excited to highlight some of our accomplishments.
Brink Now Sponsoring 11 Developers
After adding Vincenzo Palazzo, Niklas Gögge, Bruno Garcia, and Timo (“0xB10C”) in our latest round of developer grants, and then Stéphan Vuylsteke, we have also announced that Bitcoin Core maintainer Michael Ford (fanquake) has joined Brink. This brings our total sponsorship to 11 different Bitcoin and Lightning open source developers!
Author of the Lightning and Discreet Log Contracts (DLC) whitepapers, Tadge Dryja, has also been announced as a part-time Brink mentor grant recipient.
Two of our previous part-time grantees, Vincenzo Palazzo and Larry Ruane, are graduating into full-time grantees to focus the entirety of their time on Bitcoin development work. Larry says of his move from Zcash development to Bitcoin development: “I’m a shy nerd. Yet Brink found me! This is a superpower – discovering quiet people who have something good to offer to Bitcoin.”
Gloria Zhao has completed her Brink fellowship and progressed into a grant recipient. Gloria is now mentoring less-experienced contributors, as well as taking over the Bitcoin Core PR Review Club, a pipeline for newer developers to get their feet wet in Bitcoin development. She has also recently become the first female maintainer of the Bitcoin Core project, both a win for her development as a Core Dev and for the Bitcoin ecosystem. Gloria: “Being a maintainer means I’ll continue to focus primarily on the health of Bitcoin Core and help shoulder some of the responsibilities of the other maintainers, while working on package relay as one of multiple necessary upgrades for a functional transaction relay network. I’m relieved to find Brink understanding and supportive, not because of the “new title,” but out of the recognition that the Bitcoin ecosystem is built on software that requires sustained, long-term effort to maintain, regardless of the coin’s price.”
Brink’s London Office
Four developers have joined Gloria in our London office. Michael Ford, Stéphan Vuylsteke, Hennadii Stepanov (hebasto) and Niklas Gögge are working full time in London. Hennadii says of his move to the London office: “I recently moved to London to join an amazing dream-team of Bitcoin Core developers at the Brink office. I strongly believe this will be a significant benefit for my future contributions to the Bitcoin Core project.”
One of our 2022 Brink goals is to expand the London office. This includes upgrading to a larger office, hiring an onsite Office and Operations Manager, and offering program participants the option to locate in London to be part of our growing UK/Europe Bitcoin developer hub.
Bitcoin Core Developer Meeting, London
Brink sponsored and organized the most recent in-person Bitcoin Core Developer meeting in London early in March. We had 40 Bitcoin and Lightning developer attendees from around the world, including many of our own Brink grantees. During this meeting we collaborated in technical discussions across 3 full days. These in-person meetings are important for the ecosystem and we believe it is valuable to help facilitate such events.
The Core Dev meeting piggybacked on the Advancing Bitcoin Conference in London where Gloria presented on ‘Censorship and DoS Attacks’ to a technical audience. The Bitcoin 2022 Conference had Brink representatives talking about ‘Funding Open Source Bitcoin Developers’ and the ‘Bitcoin Core Development Process’ and the mempool.
In an effort to onboard newer developers to Bitcoin, Brink sponsored btc++, a developer conference, and grantee 0xB10C educated attendees on ‘Tracing in Bitcoin Core v23.0’. Larry Ruane and I also sought to educate young developers with our ‘So You Want to Be a Bitcoin Developer?’ article on Coindesk.
Bitcoin Optech’s 200th Newsletter
As one of the leading technical Bitcoin publications in the world, Bitcoin Optech, managed by Brink, celebrated its 200th newsletter in May. The newsletter also now has volunteer translations in Japanese, Czech, Hindi, Chinese, and German languages.
Bitcoin Core version 23.0 was released in April with several contributions to that release from Brink grantees. As always, we recommend subscribing to our Optech Newsletter if you’re interested in keeping up with the latest technical news in Bitcoin.
With changes in the economy and crypto-specific shake ups in the first half of 2022, Brink is proud to announce that we are in a sustainable financial position to grow the number of grants and continue our support of our existing program participants. With “crypto winter” hitting many of our sponsors, fundraising has been more difficult and is one of our priorities for the coming year. The successes we outlined earlier are only possible due to sponsorships from companies and individuals contributing to us financially. Thank you!
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