On the 18th of June, 2019, Facebook officially announced Libra, a novel blockchain protocol with a stable cryptocurrency of the same name. The Libra blockchain will come with its own smart contract programming language, Move.
As business-blockchain integration specialists, we see huge potential for integrating the Libra blockchain in our product. In this article, we’ll discuss:
- Why we think Libra is an excellent fit for our product
- What we intend to build with the Libra blockchain
- Current and next steps in this project
Why We Chose Libra
Most of us know Libra as the new and exciting cryptocurrency developed by Facebook. Perhaps unsurprisingly, given Facebook’s past privacy controversies, the Libra cryptocurrency has already garnered a lot of attention for all the wrong reasons.
But hold on a minute — we’re not talking about the Libra cryptocurrency. We’re talking about the Libra blockchain: the proprietary blockchain protocol Facebook is creating for its cryptocurrency.
After a quick peek into the Libra technical paper, it turns out that the Libra blockchain is a lot more like Ethereum than anyone had expected. Libra isn’t just a currency; it’s a full-blown decentralized computing platform.
And just like Ethereum, Libra has its own smart contract programming language: Move.
In building Move, it’s clear that Facebook has paid special attention to creating a programming language best-suited to modelling digital assets and their transfer.
By restricting some programming freedoms and adding other unique features, many believe that Facebook has built a language that can more easily and more effectively represent digital assets than even Ethereum’s renowned smart contract language, Solidity.
The key feature of Move is the ability to define custom resource types. Resources can never be copied or implicitly discarded; they can only be moved between storage locations. By using these resource types (a concept inspired by linear logic), a lot of traditional blockchain attack vectors have been wiped away by design.
Ultimately, we believe this could make Libra the blockchain of choice for digital asset modelling and other high-stakes blockchain applications.
Unibright and Libra: A Perfect Match
With the Unibright Framework being product-ready, we’re proud to offer an agnostic platform for integrating existing business systems with the blockchain — without writing a single line of code.
For us, the advantage of being blockchain agnostic is apparent with the rise of Libra. While other products built on existing blockchain solutions — such as Ethereum — are not able to make use of the Libra ecosystem without significant changes, it’s a straightforward task for us to integrate Move and generate both digital assets and smart contracts for the Libra blockchain.
For users of the Unibright Framework, this integration with Libra will make it possible to design, generate, integrate, and monitor Move code and Libra assets, all through an entirely visual interface.
We can see two powerful applications for the Unibright Framework in the context of Libra:
- Tokenization. As discussed previously, the Libra blockchain is built to enable safe and secure management of digital assets. We believe there is great potential in extending our tokenization templates to the Move language, thereby allowing customers to effortlessly create their own security tokens on the Libra blockchain.
With our extensive business integration experience (and the existing functionality of the Unibright Connector), we can imagine Unibright becoming the solution of choice for enterprises looking to tokenize assets currently represented on internal systems
- Licencing. We also see an opportunity to extend the scope of our licencing templates to the Move language. This will allow users to automate the licencing, royalties, and fees of their intellectual property on the Libra blockchain. Since the Libra blockchain has inherent ties to stable financial assets, it may prove to be a markedly more appropriate solution for licencing applications than other blockchains.
Aside from these particularly apparent use cases, we’re sure there will prove to be ample justification for implementing Libra functionality in the Unibright Framework, even outside of asset-related contexts.
Current Development Status (July 2019)
Earlier this week, we kicked off the first Libra workshops with some members of our developer team. The Libra blockchain itself isn’t yet live; however, Facebook has already released documentation and source code for the Libra blockchain itself and the Move smart contract programming language. This allowed us to get a first-hand understanding of how Move works, what it does, and how it might be used.
After some discussion, we were quick to identify our tokenization template as a starting point for Move development. We’re already working hard on developing tokenization functionality for the Ethereum blockchain — since this is closely related to the use case of one of our customers from the real estate sector — so this was a pleasant coincidence.
Over the next few weeks, we will continue to get a feel for the Move language and start to plan out how we can map the functionality of our tokenization template to the features provided within Move. We hope that by Q4 of 2019, we’ll have established a significant understanding of and codebase for the Move language.
With Libra scheduled to release some time in 2020, our goal is to offer one of the first solutions for automatically generating objects and smart contracts for the Libra ecosystem when it goes live. We hope this will draw plenty of attention to the Unibright Framework, and may even land us some willing customers!
Wondering how you can help out? The Unibright team is always looking to make new connections. If you know anyone working with Libra or Move, we’d love for you to make us an introduction!
Unibright offers a unified framework, bringing blockchain technology and smart contracts to mainstream usage. With its “no-coding-needed” approach, smart contracts get generated, deployed and updated automatically into different blockchains. Unibright works with visual, usecase-related templates and also automatically integrates existing IT systems into the blockchain.
Unibright Solutions, a dedicated consulting branch to support blockchain use in business processes, was additionally launched in December 2018.