Welcome to the Nexus Newsletter for April 2018!
March was an exciting month for the Nexus core team as we continued to work diligently on many fronts — there is great progress being made. Our growing team of coders continued to make rapid strides on the Nexus interface, Colin Cantrell worked with Dino Farinacci to further integrate LISP into the Nexus architecture, and we released wallet code updates to resolve issues raised by the community. Furthermore, Dino & Colin presented at The Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) 101 in London on the future of blockchain technology and how important LISP integration will be for these systems.
The Nexus modular interface is looking fantastic and is progressing steadily towards completion. We are committed to releasing products only when they are truly tested, secure, and ready for prime time. So while we do not have any hard dates on when the Tritium wallet will be released, we wanted to let you know that a lot of progress has been made and everyone on the team is excited to see the interface released to the world!
Dino Farinacci’s LISP technology is designed to help the internet scale. The Lispers.net website states, “We are building state-of-the-art, next generation internet architectures and protocols that enable modern-use applications to scale securely and run efficiently.” When building distributed systems, such as Nexus, the LISP architecture becomes highly important to help provide increased speed and scalability. Dino is working in conjunction with the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) to standardize and develop LISP technology. Last month Dino and Colin presented to the IETF in London on the future of Blockchain technology.
Anastasiya is now working full time as our Community Coordinator. She is here to help bridge the information flow between the Nexus core team and the Community. As a reminder, transparency is highly important to the core team! That being said, we are also working with restrictions on releasing certain information, such as non-disclosure agreements with regard to partnerships and exchange listings. We are committed to informing the community of all updates as soon as we are able. Anastasiya is doing an excellent job and we are delighted to have her on board!
We are continuing to expand the core team adding key members in order to bring the vision of Nexus to fruition in an expedited manner. Simultaneously, we maintain the focus of building a very strong foundation for Blockchain 3.0: the next generation of Blockchain Technology. We are committed to bringing revolutionary open source technology to solve the issues of speed, security, and scalability in a distributed manner – this is the very heart of what makes Nexus such a special project.
Evolution starts here!
Here is the latest development update from Software Engineer & Core Developer Brian Smith:
Our development team has continued to grow and we now have 5 full-time software engineers working on the Tritium Wallet. In early March they flew out to Arizona from around the country to meet the team and set up their work flow. The devs are utilizing Agile development tools and methods to accelerate their development on the Tritium interface and back-end. The team is in the process of interviewing and hiring more C++ developers.
The Nexus Developer Team
Nexus & LISP:
Two Part Series
Nexus Integration with the LISP Architecture
(This blog release was published on our site on March 19, 2018)
Nexus is pleased to announce the integration of the LISP (Locator Identity Separation Protocol) network architecture with Nexus Earth which allows the Nexus blockchain to run over a secure open overlay. LISP was created by Dino Farinacci, in partnership with several Cisco engineers, and is being developed and standardized by the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF). Dino founded lispers.net after being a Cisco Fellow. At Cisco Systems he designed and implemented dozens of protocols: “more than anyone on earth.”
LISP helps the internet scale, and provides secure features for today’s newer applications by encapsulating a packet with identifiers into a packet with topological locators. This allows the internet to route packets based on location rather than identifiers, enabling it to scale by holding less routing state. As the lispers.net website explains: “We are building state-of-the art, next generation internet architectures and protocols that enable modern-use applications to scale securely and run efficiently.” The Cisco website notes: “LISP is a network architecture and set of protocols that implements a new semantic for IP addressing. LISP creates two namespaces and uses two IP addresses: Endpoint Identifiers (EIDs), which are assigned to end-hosts, and Routing Locators (RLOCs), which are assigned to devices (primarily routers) that make up the global routing system.”
Why is this Important
The network keeps growing with the expanding number of users and devices (think wireless phone, computers, wireless earbuds, iPads etc) so we need to have a way to consolidate data in order for the network to handle more traffic from more devices. Our internet currently runs on IPv4 which can handle 4.3 billion IP addresses, fewer than the number of people in the world. Once you add in multiple devices you can see where the current system needs to scale, and thus IPv6 comes into play. However the transition to IPv6 started in 1990 and is still not completed. LISP allows identifiers to be IPv6 addresses while the core does not have to be completely converted to IPv6, so we can address 2^128 nodes (3.4E38 addresses), close to addressing every particle (1.33E50) on earth (off by 10^12).
You can read more about IPv4 and IPv6 here:
LISP also speeds up the user experience, as we currently don’t take the shortest path between communication devices with intermediaries such as ISPs. LISP provides increased speed & scalability.
Taking the shortest path between devices has additional implications. Peer-to-peer, or direct device-to-device, communication equates to a more secure, decentralized network mitigating delays and connection interruptions. The devices that attach to the network will have multiple connections and continuously be moving around. We want applications to keep their connections up during roaming, mitigating latency.
How LISP Works Exactly
With LISP, the user receives an EID (end-point ID), which is a static Identity. Instead of your identity changing each time you move your devices, it stays fixed and encrypted, allowing everything to run more smoothly. Comparing this to blockchain, your EID basically becomes the “trust key” for your identity. This EID or address is the same address you would be using today on your devices, but the address can remain assigned to you, and is independent of how and where you connect to the network. An EID can be a “Crypto-EID”, so when a private/public key-pair is allocated to the device, the Crypto-EID is a hash of the public-key. Therefore, your identity is based on your crypto credentials, much like your Nexus Wallet address.
LISP & Nexus
For the last few months Nexus has been successfully test running two Nexus nodes, Nexus 1 & Nexus 2, that have been assigned EIDs using the LISP overlay.
How LISP Helps Nexus
Just a single feature of LISP would benefit Nexus, but there are many. LISP allows Nexus to have all of its data packets encrypted when traveling over the network. With LISP providing a direct route for information to travel there are no eavesdroppers in the middle of information transfer, providing privacy of transactions. Did you know that disclosing your physical location is a privacy issue? LISP is essentially bringing HTTPS (Hyper Text Transfer Protocol Secure) level security to Nexus.
Another way that LISP enhances Nexus is by running the blockchain over IPv6 even if the whole internet is not running on it. Nexus runs on an IPv6 overlay where LISP will allow it to connect to the IPv4 underlay.
Nexus & LISP at the Internet Engineering Task Force 101
Colin Cantrell, Chief Architect and founder of Nexus spoke with Dino Farinacci on Monday, March 19th at The Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) 101 in London on LISP and the future of blockchain technology.
For more tech detail, please visit this draft published to IETF by Colin Cantrell & Dino Farinacci:
Dino Farinacci @ The Nexus HQ
Dino Farinacci visited the Nexus HQ in Scottsdale on March 28th and 29th to begin setting up two additional Nexus nodes, Nexus 12 (12.12) & Nexus 13 (13.13). These additional nodes will test run the LISP network architecture overlay. When the new test nodes are up and running in Arizona, the total number of test nodes will grow from four to six.
While in Arizona, Dino also met with Colin Cantrell and many members of the Nexus team to discuss further use cases for LISP, teach the team a bit more about how LISP operates, and share some new findings from test running LISP over Nexus.
- There are two docker containers on Dino’s Laptop. Within the docker containers are two Nexus nodes running over LISP, Nexus 1 (1.1) and Nexus 2 (2.2) that Dino set up in California prior to coming to Arizona.
- Dino and Colin also set up node 12 (12.12) in Nexus’ Kansas Data Center and node 13 (13.3) on Colin’s desktop.
- Dino and Colin worked on setting up two more container nodes, Nexus 3 (3.3) & Nexus 4 (4.4), which are still in development, on Dino’s visit to Arizona.
- The 240 addresses are addresses that we chose. They are End Point IDs that go from 1.1-13.13, so we will have 13 Nexus nodes validating transactions (mining/staking) over LISP.
- Since Dino had 1.1 and 2.2 set up when he flew out to Phoenix, as he moved his laptop from his WiFi network to Southwest Airline’s WiFi, he was able to run Nexus over LISP at 35,000 feet in the air and the connection stayed up!
- The two Nexus applications run on a system that sends packets to the network. When sending from 240 addresses, it uses the LISP overlay, which means it runs through the LISPsers.net code that captures packets from 240 addresses. When the 240 addresses are not used as a source address, it will simply send packets on the underlay. The reason? We want Nexus nodes to be able to talk to both LISP and non-LISP addresses at the same time. This provides some real data.
- No matter where your Nexus node is, whether it’s on an airplane or a coffee shop, with LISP it will maintain the most optimal connections so your transactions are never interrupted.
Dino delved into more technical detail in his presentation, highlighting some nuances he saw demonstrated from running the test network. Our Architects and Devs were especially excited by the possibilities of LISP!
The biggest challenge with the IP architecture is that most devices we run sit behind NATs. NATs translate IP addresses, creating a many to one relationship between devices and the network connection. LISP reverses that relationship to associate one EID with many connections. The IP address of the NAT is the RLOC for the EID nodes behind it. NATs act as a bottleneck in the flow of information since they need to address each EID behind it from many devices and connect them to the same RLOC IP address, which can slow down connections. Since we need a lot of miners and wallets to communicate with each other quickly and smoothly, we don’t want to keep a lot of NATs. LISP bypasses them by using re-encapsulating tunnel routers that pierce through the NAT. These tunnels are cryptographically secure, and increase speed and connectivity.
Goals & Benefits of Running Nexus on LISP:
- The Nexus application will be able to talk to Nexus/LISP nodes and Nexus/non-LISP nodes. When the app sends packets to EIDs, the overlay is used where LISP encapsulates packets to RLOCs. Otherwise, the underlay is used.
- Nexus will be able to run on LISP and send packets to other Nexus apps running on LISP, as well as those not running LISP (non-LISP). That is, the Nexus app can decide when to use the overlay network (LISP) and when to use the underlay network (non-LISP).
- LISP encrypts Nexus information (packets) over the network, which will provide increased privacy for transaction data, protecting it from ‘man-in-the-middle’ attack.
- The Nexus app can use multicast so LISP can deliver packets efficiently to L1 miners, L2 miners, and L3 miners, respectively.
- LISP allows people to use their wallets or miners anywhere. When you consider mining from mobile devices or wallets on phones, LISP allows for increased flexibility, keeping transport connections open and the ability to use multiple networks / connections on your device
- LISP provides 100% reliability that nodes will connect in a distributed fashion, which gives us a better inter-distributed architecture
- LISP provides faster transfers (due to the shortest connection path).
Nexus Wallet update 0.2.4.1 was released on March 29th. Nick Earl and Colin Cantrell completed the updates which provide several improvements on the previous wallets, including:
- Updated source code to allow for building with both Qt4 and Qt5. It will automatically detect what version is being used.
- Combined makefile.mingw, makefile.osx, and makefile.unix into a single OS-detecting version called makefile.cli.
- Modified makefile and nexus-qt.pro to display cleaner output when compiling. Also changed build arguments. Refer to appropriate build documents in doc folder for more info.
- Enabled compiling as 32BIT or 64BIT program.
- Fixed various typos.
- Added Arch Linux support.
- Repaired png files that contained bad data.
- Changed staking power to better compete with finding genesis blocks vs old versions of wallet.
- Fixed compiling with Apple LLVM clang/clang++ versions.
- Fixed “Estimated number of blocks” function in Help>Debug Window.
- Standardized executable names to Nexus-Qt and Nexus for all OS’s.
- Updated all compiling documents to reflect present day instructions.
- Added Windows building instructions for dependents and wallet as well as creating a build script.
- Fix applied to forks caused by trust keys not being deleted properly.
- Updated various code to make it more std=c++11 compatible.
- Getrawmempool rpc command is working. You can use this to see transactions that are pending but not in a block yet.
- Fix to remove trust key when block disconnected twice.
- Fix to the memory leak while staking.
Visit this link to download the latest wallet update:
For wallet support, please join our Nexus Earth Slack here:
https://nexusearth.com/slack/ then enter the channel #support
Colin Cantrell & Kierre Reeg on CryptoKnights Podcast
Colin Cantrell & Kierre Reeg were interviewed by CryptoKnights Podcast on March 30th. The interview was highly dynamic as Kierre and Colin discussed varying topics like the 3D Chain (Blockchain 3.0!), how and why Nexus was created, what a prosperity based money system is, the mission and vision of Nexus, and the Nexus Pod system. CryptoKnights is a global podcast with millions of downloads per episode. Their website notes, “At CryptoKnights, we work towards bridging the Crypto divide. We do so by creating and spreading knowledge of the Crypto world with the help of Crypto Gurus. Our aim is to cut through all the noise surrounding the world of decentralized monetary value, so that you too can be a part of this BIG revolution.”
Speed, Security & Scalability = Nexus!
Make sure to tune in to Nexus on CryptoKnights Podcast here:
New Community Coordinator, Global Business Dev, Community Support & more Devs
Nexus is continuing to grow the core team to build the infrastructure to support the code architecture that’s been created. Here’s an introduction to our latest hires:
Anastasiya Maslova: Community Coordinator
Anastasiya got involved with cryptocurrencies in 2016 and discovered Nexus just before the first Nexus Conference last September. She took an active role joining the Content POD, promoting Nexus to her network, and moving up to admin some of our platforms. She has now relocated to Arizona to work closely with the team as the new Community Coordinator.
Anastasiya graduated with a degree in international business and economics, and has worked in international shipping, customer service, accounting, and real estate, including the new start-up Ubitquity, LLC, that is focused on transferring property ownership data onto the blockchain.
She fell in love with the Nexus project because it combines her passion for cryptocurrencies, blockchain technology, space, financial and information freedom. She is excited about connecting the Community’s voice with Core and the world, and exploring the creative collaboration that decentralized systems offer. Her other passions include writing, philosophy, economics, and educating people about alternative governance models.
Alex EL-Nemer: Global Business Development
Alex El-Nemer graduated from the University of Bath England with a degree in Economics. He soon realized the need to reform monetary frameworks when — while working as an FX trader in London — he witnessed first hand the shortcomings of current payment systems.
Initially, Alex was drawn to Nexus because it definitely addresses what, in his opinion, are the two most important elements of a digital currency: security and scalability. After securing the RightBTC exchange listing, Alex now works on Global Business Development focusing on important, long term partnerships around the world. Alex will utilize his connections to help businesses and industry leaders understand the potential of Nexus, and the power of collaboration in the world.
Nick Earl: Community Support
Nick Earl has always loved learning how things work. With computers, he found that he had an infinite supply of knowledge that he could easily access to learn about everything. Nick’s interest in computers led him to attend Cisco networking college courses even before graduating high school in 2006. After graduation, Nick joined the United States Air Force where he provided IT support for the Distributed Common Ground System, during hundreds of missions, as part of Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom. He received technical training from the Community College of the Air Force and during this time achieved his Comptia A+, Network+, and Security+ certifications. Following his career in the military Nick expanded his knowledge and skills through employment at Best Buy on the Geek Squad, as a PC Technician, where he learned the importance of communicating technology concepts to people who aren’t familiar with them.
Nick became interested in cryptocurrencies in late 2016 and began looking for a coin to start learning from. The Nexus name itself caught his attention initially, as it reminded him of his days playing World of Warcraft! When he looked deeper into the project, he saw an ambition, a wealth of knowledge and ability in the developers, and a community of people (that he had never seen online before) that were more like a family than a community. Nick is excited to use the experience and skills he has developed over his career to help in building the best Nexus experience for the community that he has grown to admire, and he looks forward to helping others share in the experience that he has had with Nexus.
Dillon Dugan: Dev
Spaid Organizes 500 Nexus in Giveaways
The Nexus community recently pulled together donations to give away over 500 NXS in a five week span. The giveaway started as a game where people guessed at a random NXS address on the Richlist, with the winner given 25 NXS for the correct guess. Soon, more and more Nexus community members were offering to contribute to the pool, and were also making suggestions as to how the giveaway could attract more interest from outside the Nexus community. The weekly free giveaway of at least 100 NXS took shape and is on it’s fifth successful week. To date, over 700 entries have been submitted and 530 NXS has been given away.
A new donation of 1000 NXS has been added to the pool and Spaid will hold another round of giveaways! Join our Slack or Discord and check out the details in the #giving channel. Enter today at https://microcapcrypto.com/nexus-giveaway/
We are Nexus!
Scott Simon does Cryptex AMA
Scott Simon from the community participated in an AMA on Cryptex on Saturday, March 18th. Scott is one of the key leaders in our community, moderating our community platforms, providing support, and learning C++ so he can contribute more to the open source code. Scott has an extensive background in tech and consulting, and brings an extensive amount of knowledge to Nexus. Thanks for the great AMA Scott!
Listen in to the Cryptex AMA with Scott Simon here:
Thank you to our amazing Community for another remarkable month of growth at Nexus Earth. We couldn’t do any of this without you, and your hard work continues to shine as we collectively educate the world about the most secure & scalable, next generation blockchain!
The Nexus Team