Nomadic Labs
Nomadic Labs
Meanwhile at Nomadic Labs #4

Meanwhile...

This is the fourth blog post of our ‘’Meanwhile at Nomadic Labs’’ series. We will discuss what we have been working on the past month, in particular about events that we organized or participated in.

Babylon successfully activated around one month ago. A more detailed list of changes can be found in our recent Babylon Blogpost. With all of these new features, Babylon was a way larger protocol change than Athens which was mostly about changing two constants. Babylon significantly touched all parts of the protocol: voting procedure, account system, consensus, and smart contracts. Our most recent proposal, Carthage, was announced in our blog last week. While we were excited for the new protocol proposal, we didn’t expect it to get injected only a few hours after the publication of our blog post.

Apart for our work on the protocol, we have also been busy on other fronts:

Nomadic Labs released its first teaser ”Discover Nomadic Labs in 2 minutes” to introduce ourselves to the French and international community. You can view it here.

We are equally proud to have hosted our first ever Pitch Day. Six blockchain startups from different industries had the opportunity to pitch in front of five experts. You can view the participants in this tweet. Equisafe, a company that specializes in tokenizing real-estate assets on the blockchain, won the competition. They also used the opportunity to announce their first smart contract on the Tezos blockchain (one of the four that will compose the core components of the NYX Standard, which is planned for 2020)

We were the main sponsor of Chainhack 4, a mini hackathon in Lisbon between the 8th and 10th of November. Together with Tezos Commons, we are also sponsoring the upcoming Tezos Barcelona meetup.

Raphaël Cauderlier, Julien Tesson and Colin González from Nomadic Labs presented at the ‘’Tezos Smart Contracts: Programming Languages and Formal Verification’’ workshop hosted by IRIF, the fundamental computer science laboratory of “Université de Paris” (formerly known as “Université Paris-Diderot”). This informal workshop, sponsored by Nomadic Labs and organized by Michel Mauny from the Tezos Foundation, introduced some of the available programming languages, some more experimental languages, and some of the formal verification techniques that are being developed in the Tezos ecosystem. Raphaël gave an introduction to Michelson and a presentation of Mi-Cho-Coq, whereas Julien talked about Albert, an Intermediate Language for Tezos Smart Contracts. Colin presented his PhD thesis project: a spreadsheet-derived language for smart-contract programming. The entire workshop was live streamed in two parts thanks to Marc-Antoine Tréhin: #1 #2.

We also attended Blockchain Corp Paris 2019, with a dedicated Tezos booth. (A large Exhibit with +1500 participants focused on Enterprise and Adoption). Hadrien Zerah, Sajida Zouarhi and Sebastian Larquié were present during this two-day conference to talk about the entire Tezos ecosystem, the challenges ahead, and what differentiates Tezos from many of the other projects out there. We also held a presentation in the workshop area and answered R&D/adoption-related questions.

Arvid Jakobsson and Zaynah Dargaye are working on formally verifying the Spending Limit Contract, using Mi-Cho-Coq. This contract limits the amount of spending that an account can perform in a configurable time window. This is similar to how a typical credit card imposes daily spending limits for security reasons. This contract forms an integral part of the Cortez wallet, making its formal verification a priority.

Last but not least, we are currently looking for interns! Apply before December 15th. More details in this tweet.


Carthage: changelog and testnet

We are happy to announce a new protocol proposal code-named Carthage, developed together with Cryptium Labs. After the feature rich Babylon, Carthage is a much needed housekeeping release. Carthage contains exclusively fixes and small improvements across the board, the more relevant being a corrected formula for rewards. The only “novelty” is an increase in the gas limit which will allow to execute more smart contracts. A testnet called carthagenet has already been running Babylon since last week and will amend to Carthage in the next...

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Lessons Learned from the Babylon Protocol Upgrade: A Retrospective

Babylon (aka protocol 005), the second Tezos protocol amendment jointly developed by Nomadic Labs and Cryptium Labs, was successfully activated on block 655361. Since then, we’ve continued analysing and monitoring the new features, but have also engaged in a deeper reflection on the upgrade process from its development period, pre-injection, to the period following the activation. This article summarises the lessons learned in five parts: the development of Babylon, the proposal period, continued testing during...

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Mainnet release to patch Babylon

During the testing phase of protocol Babylon 005_PsBABY5H, we discovered a bug affecting bigmaps in Michelson smart contracts. The bug is corrected in a new version of Babylon, 005_PsBabyM1. How to proceed The bug is not critical but causes a significant performance degradation for newly created smart contracts and an incorrect behavior for existing ones using big maps. More details on the nature and effects of the bug can be found in the protocol documentation page. During the upcoming promotion vote period, we propose...

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Cortez security by using the Spending Limit contract

In this most recent blog post we discuss how to benefit from the secure enclave using the Daily Spending Limit smart contract.

My wallet, my crypto When holding a cryptocurrency, one needs a safe and secure wallet to store it. Wallets are used to store, receive, or spend cryptocurrencies. They work by keeping private keys to themselves and using them to sign transaction from the corresponding public keys. A public key is used to send assets to the corresponding destination, whereas a private key is used to send assets from your corresponding wallet. Addresses are uniquely defined as a...

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Babylon update instructions for delegation wallet developers

How to update the delegation feature of your wallet for 005 (aka. Babylon)

Introduction Tezos wallets usually feature management of scriptless originated (aka KT1) accounts used to delegate tokens. This document details the steps needed for wallet developers to update their applications in anticipation to the breaking changes in the Babylon protocol update. See also cryptium’s migration guidelines and Babylon’s documentation for more technical details on the Babylon update. The Babylon protocol update brings two big changes to the way delegation can be implemented. First, implicit (aka tz) accounts can now directly delegate their tokens (see relevant...

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Babylon: Proposal Injected!

EDIT (August 2, 2019): The updated Babylon proposal has been injected by Cryptium Labs. Its hash is PsBABY5HQTSkA4297zNHfsZNKtxULfL18y95qb3m53QJiXGmrbU. The instructions contained in this post have been updated accordingly. Cryptium Labs just injected the hash of our new joint proposal: Babylon. This triggers the beginning of the third on-chain vote to amend Tezos. This process could end in the successful migration from current protocol Athens in about three months, if the participants decide so. This update is joint work with Cryptium Labs, with contributions from...

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Michelson updates in 005

Changes in Michelson As hinted at in a previous blog post, we’ve been working on improving different parts of the protocol, including our favourite smart contract language: Michelson. The changes made to Michelson in this proposal intend to simplify smart contract development by making the code of complex contracts simpler and cleaner. In particular: smart contracts now support entrypoints contracts can now create, store and transmit as many big_maps as they want comparable types are now closed under products (i.e. the pair constructor) a new instruction, CHAIN_ID, allows...

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Analysis of Emmy+

19/11/2019 update: Following feedback from Daniel Moroz and Michael Neuder, we edited the blog post in order to nuance our previous statement that “selfish baking is not profitable”. More precisely, selfish baking only gives tiny profits, for instance 0.0016% gains with respect to the honest rewards, for a dishonest baker with 30% stake fraction. A new table gives the details. Note: This analysis was done with the help of Arthur Breitman and Bruno Blanchet (Inria). The...

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An indexer for Tezos

We are happy to announce that the indexer for Tezos we have been working on is ready for beta-testing and available here. But first… What is an indexer, and what is it useful for? Mainly, indexers fill a void by providing information that’s not directly available from the node’s RPC interface. But then why don’t nodes provide these RPCs in the first place? That’s simply because when you design and implement your node, you want to provide just what is necessary, focus...

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