Dusk Network Development Update — April

A monthly development update series created to embrace the transparency and inclusivity that we strive for at Dusk Network.

Development

After the publication of the Corretto repository, we are shifting our focus onto the imminent launch of the Dusk Network testnet. The testnet release is going to proceed in phases starting from Friday, May 17 when the cryptography module is going to be made public followed by a weekly release of the new modules. Closed testing results are expected to be published in 3 weeks alongside the CLI wallet, at which point the users will be able to get the full taste of the functioning network. The team is going to release instructions alongside the modules and help users get acquainted with the sections forming the core of testnet. The first testnet launch is going to be made with a goal to explore the limits of the protocol outside the sterile environment of our test suite. Our testers are urged to not shy away from breaking the protocol rules. Our testnet will have a motto of “break it until you make it”.

Our team has been working non-stop on the test suite, experimented with block times, as well as propagational delays to assess the efficiency of the Dusk Network protocol. We have been able to achieve block times of 3 seconds, which demonstrates the efficiency of the implementation taking the computational strain of the blind bid scheme and BLS signature verification into account. While in real life, the team is aiming for an average block time of 15 seconds, as a further decrease in block times would decrease the overall efficiency of the protocol, our test results demonstrate that the sturdiness of the protocol which is able to continue to function far outside the specification limits.

Research

The team has invested a lot of time and effort in the past month to research the fields cryptography potentially able to aid us in further improvement of the user anonymity as well as space and time efficiency of the core primitives of the platform. Our team members have specifically concentrated on a handful of novel techniques, including Lelantus. The research on the aforementioned techniques is ongoing and will continue until the most fitting and effective improvement is found.

Another hot topic in the Dusk Foundation virtual offices (another indication of the diversity of the team) is the Confidential Security Token (XSC) standard. The research and development branch of the team has been working closely with the business branch of Dusk Foundation alongside external experts and advisors to ascertain a legally-compliant standard. The most challenging and by far the most exciting aspect of the work on the XSC standard (the preliminary technical outline of the standard has been completed in February, as mentioned in the Development Update) has been the search for the middle ground between user anonymity and legal compliance, the outcome of which makes us feel confident about the maturity of our standard.

The XSC standard can only be plausibly functional with a working Virtual Machine (VM), which is why the team has been putting enormous resources into the development of the VM. Particularly, we have spent a lot of time looking into the plausibility of a dual-layer opcode system for the zero-knowledge primitives, which, to our knowledge, is the first concept of a developer-friendly zero-knowledge VM. The goal of the VM is to shift the computational load onto the user while constraining the state machine to the light computation as well as zero-knowledge proof verification.

Community

Our Discord server had gone through a revamp and will be used to communicate more technical protocol-related information. All of the members of the community are invited to join the server and participate in technical discussions with other members as well as the team behind the Dusk Network protocol. In the future, Discord will become a primary medium of communication for the technical branch of our team.

How to learn more about Dusk Network

The Dusk Network is a project coordinated by the Dusk Foundation. We are a decentralized ecosystem entirely focused on providing the perfect trade-off between privacy and transparency. Dusk protects the privacy and fits regulations in payments, communications and asset transfers.

Website: https://www.dusk.network 
Discord: https://discord.gg/Qn7t9ts
Telegram: https://t.me/dusknetwork
Twitter: https://twitter.com/duskfoundation 
Reddit: https://reddit.com/r/dusknetwork 
Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/company/duskfoundation/ 
GitHub: https://github.com/dusk-network