The MimbleWimble protocol was released in 2016 on IRC channel #bitcoin-wizards by pseudonymous Tom Elvis Jedusor. The paper proposed a new way to combine and store transactions to improve the privacy and scalability of a blockchain.
Originally, MimbleWimble was intended to be an upgrade to Bitcoin. But implementing MimbleWimble into Bitcoin would break Bitcoin network’s backward-compatibility. So, launching a separate chain was ultimately the only option.
Every Bitcoin transaction, including the addresses of the senders and recipients, and the amounts transacted are stored forever in Bitcoin’s public blockchain. This makes Bitcoin the most transparent money in history, but it comes at the cost of privacy and fungibility. De-anonymizing Bitcoin transactions today is a multi-million dollar industry and various complex blockchain analysis methods exist targeting the financial privacy of Bitcoin users.
In MimbleWimble, all transactions in every block are automatically collapsed into a single transaction. There are no addresses. There are no amounts. This makes it impossible to trace the users on the blockchain.
Grin and Beam are two separate implementations of the MimbleWimble protocol, with different approaches around economics, funding, and technical details. Beam has a startup-style approach, which allowed them to raise funds to cover development costs and deliver fast and often. Grin, on the other hand, is funded by donations from the community. This allows Grin to stay closer to Bitcoin’s funding model but the project lacks the resources and coordination that come from having investors and a dedicated team. Beam is deflationary with an inflation schedule much closer to Bitcoin, whereas Grin‘s inflation rate is 1 grin per second forever.
Where can I buy Beam/Grin?
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