Protocol Village: Algorand Foundation Positions New 'LiquidAuth' as Decentralized WalletConnect

The latest in blockchain tech upgrades, funding announcements and deals. For the period of June 20-26.

AccessTimeIconJun 26, 2024 at 1:50 p.m. UTC

June 26: Algorand Foundation announced at its annual Decipher conference in Barcelona that it has created a new "implementation for decentralized authentication and communication called LiquidAuth." According to the team: "LiquidAuth, a decentralized, free-to-use, open-source, and chain-agnostic authentication tool provides greater security and privacy to users than centralized solutions like WalletConnect. By authenticating peer-to-peer communication between wallets and apps/dApps using established standards, LiquidAuth improves security across Web2 and Web3. It also reduces reliance on third parties for easy login through email or social accounts and decentralizes the communications layer between applications, users, and services." (ALGO)

Schematic illustrating an implementation of LiquidAuth (Algorand Foundation)
Schematic illustrating an implementation of LiquidAuth (Algorand Foundation)

'Propeller' Launches as First DApp on River Protocol

June 26: LCA, a product innovation agency under the Late Checkout holding company umbrella, announced the launch of Propeller, claiming it's the "first dApp built on River Protocol, an open-source communications protocol that was introduced in May. According to the team: "Propeller is a real-time messaging app connecting users directly with product teams for feedback. Propeller challenges one-way feedback systems by enabling dynamic conversations between users and product teams. Users can share ideas, help improve products and receive rewards for valuable input. River’s token-gated memberships and on-chain verification ensure feedback comes from verified community members, with memberships existing as NFTs."

Covalent Raises $5M From RockTree, Other Investors, to Bring Ethereum Wayback Machine to Asia

June 26: Covalent, the leading modular data infrastructure layer, closed a $5 million strategic funding round, to bring long-term data availability and the Ethereum Wayback Machine to APAC, aiming to cultivate blockchain and AI innovations in Asia, according to the team. "The round is led by RockTree Capital with participation from CMCC Global, Moonrock Capital and Double Peak Group. Covalent also unveils the New Dawn Initiative: a complete rebrand to align itself closer to its crypto-native community. The new color scheme of neon green and blue embodies the bold spirit of Vancouver."

BNB Chain 'BEP-341' Proposal Lets Validators Produce Consecutive Blocks

June 26: BNB Chain announced a new BEP-341 proposal, "Governance Enabled Continuous Block Production." According to the team: "This proposed enhancement aims to significantly improve the transaction processing capacity of BSC by enabling validators to produce consecutive blocks. To address any risks, BEP-341 introduces adjustable governance parameters aimed at balancing performance improvements with critical security measures. The BEP-341 proposal has been published on the BNB Chain forum for community discussion and input."

Schematic illustrating the new allocation for priority block-producing rights under BEP-341 (BNB Forum)
Schematic illustrating the new allocation for priority block-producing rights under BEP-341 (BNB Forum)

Shardeum, L1 With 'Dynamic State Sharding,' Launches Stage 1 of Incentivized Testnet

June 26: Shardeum, an EVM-compatible layer-1 chain that uses dynamic state sharding to keep transaction fees low, announced the June 26 launch of Stage 1 of its incentivized testnet, Atomium. According to the team: "Atomium will be used to incentivize community members to test the network for bugs, vulnerabilities and performance issues in order to fortify the network ahead of mainnet launch. Participants will be incentivized to engage in the testing process with 0.65% of token supply or 3.3 million SHM allocated towards community contributions. The campaign will unfold in multiple stages with Shardeum proceeding with subsequent stages of the testnet once network stability has been assessed."

Developer Behind Allora Network, Decentralized 'Self-Improving Machine Intelligence Network,' Closes Strategic Funding Round

June 26: Allora Labs, contributors to the Allora Network – described as a "decentralized, self-improving machine intelligence network that powers applications with an evolving system of machine learning models" – closed a strategic funding round, bringing their total company funding to $35 million. According to the team: "This round aimed to bring on further strategic partners that will play a key role in creating a decentralized collective intelligence network. Allora Labs’ investors include Polychain, Framework Ventures, CoinFund, Blockchain Capital, Mechanism Capital and Delphi Digital."

Conduit, Platform for 'One-Click' Blockchain App Launches, Raises $35M

June 26: Conduit, a crypto-native platform that enables developers to launch their blockchain applications with one-click infrastructure, announced its $35M Series A led by Paradigm and Haun Ventures, with additional investments from Robot Ventures, Credibly Neutral, Coinbase Ventures and Bankless Ventures. According to the team: "Conduit allows anyone to create a high-performance rollup on Ethereum mainnet or Layer 2 in under 15 minutes. This funding will accelerate their mission to become the 'onchain cloud' platform, making it seamless for developers to launch and scale decentralized apps via rollups."

APhone's Decentralized Cloud Smartphone Can Be Activated by Solana Saga Owners

June 26: APhone, describing itself as a "decentralized cloud-based smartphone," announced an initiative within the Solana Mobile ecosystem. According to the team: "This will enable Solana Saga owners to activate APhone’s decentralized cloud smartphone via their devices. APhone’s cloud smartphone offers its own Web3 app store and bypasses traditional hardware limitations by utilizing Aethir’s decentralized cloud (DeCloud) technology."

Protocol Village is a regular feature of The Protocol, our weekly newsletter exploring the tech behind crypto, one block at a time. Sign up here to get it in your inbox every Wednesday. Project teams can submit updates here. For previous versions of Protocol Village, please go here. Also please check out our weekly The Protocol podcast.

Solana Foundation Adds 'Actions' and 'Blinks' as Developer Tools

June 25: The Solana Foundation announced the launch of Solana Actions and blockchain links ("Blinks") to its suite of developer tools. According to the team: "These tools offer way to integrate blockchain transactions into any platform, creating a seamless and intuitive Web3 experience for users. Multiple Solana ecosystem projects will be using Solana Actions and Blinks at launch, including Cubik, Sanctum, Tensor, Realms, Access, Jupiter, Helium, Truffle, Phantom and Backpack." (SOL)

Acre Introduces 'Simple BTC Yield'

June 25: Acre introduced "simple BTC yield" on Mezo, a Bitcoin economic layer, thanks to our liquid staked Bitcoin, stBTC. According to the team: "Acre strips away the complexity of Bitcoin yield, giving a simple Bitcoin in, Bitcoin out process for depositors. In the background, Acre converts BTC to tBTC, and deploys it into various yield-generating strategies across crypto."

ENSO, Intent Engine for Chain Abstraction, Raises $4.2M

June 25: ENSO, an intent engine for chain abstraction, has closed a $4.2 million funding round with Ideo Ventures, Hypersphere and more than 60 angel investors, according to the team: "The funds will support the launch of their L1 Cosmos-based blockchain this year and continued product development."

ZKsync Developer's New 'Elastic Chain' Could Compete With Polygon's AggLayer

June 25: Matter Labs, the main development firm behind the layer-2 network ZKsync, has introduced a new roadmap called ZKsync 3.0, aimed at making the ecosystem more interconnected – including a new "Elastic Chain" that somewhat resembles rival Polygon's AggLayer, released earlier this year. At the core of ZKsync "3.0" is the v24 upgrade, released June 7, turning “ZKsync from a single ZK chain into an Elastic Chain,” the Matter Labs team wrote in a blog post shared with CoinDesk.

Portal to Bitcoin Announces 18 New Hires After Raising $34M in March

June 25: Portal to Bitcoin, the bridgeless interoperability protocol on Bitcoin formerly known as Portal that raised $34 million in a seed round in March, has hired 18 people, according to the team. They include Dan Edlebeck, former head of ecosystem at Sei Labs, to be chief marketing officer.

Bitget, in Alliance With Foresight Ventures, Announces $20M TON Ecosystem Fund

June 25: Crypto exchange Bitget announced a $20 million TON Ecosystem Fund in alliance with Singapore-based investment firm Foresight Ventures, "aiming to support early-stage projects building on The Open Network (TON)," according to the team: "This strategic initiative highlights the duo's commitment to fostering innovation and development within the TON ecosystem."

Solana-Focused Startup Accelerator Colosseum Raises $60M to Invest in Early-Stage Projects

June 25: Colosseum, the recently launched startup accelerator that organizes hackathons for the Solana ecosystem, raised $60 million for a fund that will invest in early-stage projects, the company announced Tuesday. The fund, which was oversubscribed, will focus on pre-seed investments in selected startups from the winners of Solana Hackathons.

Metis Starts Community Selection for Sequencer Node Operators

June 24: Metis, an Ethereum layer-2 network, planned to announce the opening of a community selection process for its first batch of external sequencer node operators, "becoming the first L2 to enable shared ownership and control of a critical piece of infrastructure," according to the team: "By operating these nodes, entities become network owners. As owners, entities gain substantial influence and governance rights over the network’s strategic direction, and a share in the revenue involving sequencing rewards and fees. Distributed ownership creates robust decentralization, bringing stronger reliability to Metis and enhancing liveness and economic security." The voting process will be live from Monday through June 28.

Gitcoin Releases Free Tool for Grant Making Industry

June 24: Gitcoin, a project for providing funding for Ethereum development, released what it says is a free tool, "Grants Program Canvas," to "launch and grow a high-impact grants program," with downloadable templates, worksheets and step-by-step walk-thrus, according to the team: "Packed with years of expertise and industry insights, Grants Program Design is a detailed playbook designed to support growth leads with a structured, visual approach to grants program design."

Artela, for Extending Blockchain Functionality, Details New Parallel Architecture

June 23: Artela, a blockchain designed to extend the functionality of other blockchains, released its latest whitepaper, "Artela Scalability: Parallel Execution Stack and Elastic Blockspace." According to a blog post, the whitepaper "introduces a brand new parallelized blockchain architecture: not only achieving parallel execution but also supporting parallel storage. On top of all this parallelization, we will further realize nodes that support elastic computing, achieving elastic node block space and bringing predictable performance to dApps."

Schematic from Artela's new whitepaper illustrating the parallel storage architecture (Artela Team)
Schematic from Artela's new whitepaper illustrating the parallel storage architecture (Artela Team)

Cosmos DAO Osmosis to Adopt Fee-Free Bitcoin Bridge

June 21: Decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) Osmosis voted to adopt a fee-free Bitcoin bridge to allow bitcoin (BTC) to move into the Cosmos ecosystem. Key to the process is a revenue-sharing agreement with Bitcoin bridge Nomic, according to an emailed announcement shared with CoinDesk on Friday. A bridge is a way of improving interoperability of blockchains by allowing users to move crypto assets from one system to another.

Ethan Buchman (left), co-founder of Cosmos, speaks about Bitcoin with Osmosis Labs co-founder Sunny Aggarwal, at Consensus 2024 in Austin, Texas. (CoinDesk)
Ethan Buchman (left), co-founder of Cosmos, speaks about Bitcoin with Osmosis Labs co-founder Sunny Aggarwal, at Consensus 2024 in Austin, Texas. (CoinDesk) (Shutterstock for Consensus)

Aleph Zero's EVM-Compatible 'zkOS' Generates ZK Proofs in < 1 Second

June 21: Aleph Zero, a privacy-enhanced public blockchain operating on a Substrate stack developed by Polkadot developer Parity Technologies, introduced zkOS, an EVM-compatible privacy layer that generates zero-knowledge proofs in under a second on consumer devices, according to the team: "This allows for private transactions and dApp interactions without revealing underlying data. ZkOS uses Halo2 with KZG commitments for faster proof generation and provides a zkToolkit to simplify integration for developers. Based on benchmarks, zkOS can execute proofs in 600-800ms on MacBooks. ZkOS is designed to be faster, more user-friendly and easier for developers to integrate into Ethereum applications. ZkOS is now live on testnet."

Arbitrum to Launch 'Orbit Layer Leap' for One-Click Transfers to Layer-3 Chains

June 21: Arbitrum, the leading Ethereum L2 scaling solution by total value locked, was set to launch Orbit Layer Leap on Friday, "enabling users to bridge funds from Ethereum L1 to L3 chains within the Arbitrum Orbit ecosystem in a single-click," according to the team: "This groundbreaking feature eliminates the need to interact with L2, enhancing user experience and interoperability. Layer Leap will initially support ProofOfPlay and RariChain, reflecting Arbitrum's commitment to driving mainstream adoption of layer-2 and layer-3 solutions."

Farworld, Building Gaming on Farcaster, Raises $1.75M

June 20: Farworld Labs, the Farcaster-native gaming company, has closed its $1.75 million pre-seed funding round, co-led by Lemniscap and Variant. According to the team: "The funding will enable Farworld Labs to expedite the rollout of upcoming Q3 releases, including the highly anticipated launch of the Farcade platform in conjunction with top-tier studios and developers. Built on decentralized social media protocols, the Farcade is a platform and suite of tools for developers to build crypto-native games that integrate with onchain social, making games instantly playable within social media feeds with just a single click."

Celo Foundation Appoints Nakagawa as Executive Director; Varshney Transitions to Head of Ecosystem

June 20: The Celo Foundation is elevating homegrown and Web3 native talent into key senior leadership positions. According to the team: "Eric Nakagawa has been appointed to the new role of Executive Director of the Celo Foundation. He will work closely with Rene Reinsberg to oversee the Foundation’s daily operations. Isha Varshney has transitioned from head of DeFi to head of Ecosystem. She will oversee projects building on Celo, and lead business development efforts with both Web2 and Web3 firms. Sophia Dew joins the Celo Foundation as developer relations lead to support builders developing on the emerging Ethereum L2."

Eric Nakagawa, executive director, Celo Foundation
Eric Nakagawa, executive director, Celo Foundation

Botanix Labs Hires Stoner as Head of Security

June 20: Botanix Labs, building an EVM-equivalent layer-2 network atop Bitcoin, announced the appointment of security expert and industry veteran Ron Stoner as its new Head of Security, according to the team: "With this addition, the Botanix Labs team is uniquely positioned to develop industry-leading infrastructure that securely scales Bitcoin-native financial tools. Ron Stoner brings a wealth of experience in designing and testing blockchain-based networks as one of the most respected hackers, educators, and security professionals in the cryptocurrency industry."

POKT, Decentralized RPC Project, Expands Into AI Inference

June 20: POKT Network, a project for decentralized RPC infrastructure processing, is expanding into AI inference services, according to the team: "The network’s open-source, permissionless design aligns incentives among model researchers, hardware operators, API providers and users. Utilizing its Relay Mining algorithm, POKT creates a transparent marketplace for cryptographically verified usage, enabling AI researchers to disseminate work and generate revenue without maintaining infrastructure. This aims to decentralize AI, competing with centralized entities and supporting broad participation."

ZKX, a 'Social Perp Trading DEX on Starknet and Ethereum,' Raises $7.6M

June 20: ZKX, describing itself as "the first social perp trading DEX on Starknet and Ethereum," has raised $6.3 million in a seed round featuring key investors, such as Flowdesk, GCR and DeWhales, according to the team: "This brings the protocol's total funding to $7.6 million over the past two years. These funds are earmarked to enhance ZKX's growth and development. One of their main goals is to enable the development of new products such as its native token, $ZKX, which launched on KuCoin, and Bitget this week. The token will empower users in governance and staking, with features like social copy trade pools and cross-chain interoperability planned."

BNB Chain Upgrade Introduces Blob-Carrying Transactions to Optimize Data Storage

June 20: BNB Chain has successfully activated the BEP 336 Haber Hardfork, according to the team: "This upgrade introduces blob-carrying transactions, drastically reducing gas fees by up to 90%, and marks a significant step in optimizing BNB Chain’s data storage and processing capabilities. This cost reduction enhances the overall efficiency of the ecosystem, positioning BNB Chain as one of the most economical platforms for developers and users. The opBNB scaling solution, which already boasts some of the lowest transaction costs in the industry, will see further reductions to approximately $0.0001, and benefiting the L2s operating on BSC."

Edited by Bradley Keoun.


Please note that our privacy policy, terms of use, cookies, and do not sell my personal information has been updated.

CoinDesk is an award-winning media outlet that covers the cryptocurrency industry. Its journalists abide by a strict set of editorial policies. In November 2023, CoinDesk was acquired by the Bullish group, owner of Bullish, a regulated, digital assets exchange. The Bullish group is majority-owned by; both companies have interests in a variety of blockchain and digital asset businesses and significant holdings of digital assets, including bitcoin. CoinDesk operates as an independent subsidiary with an editorial committee to protect journalistic independence. CoinDesk employees, including journalists, may receive options in the Bullish group as part of their compensation.

Bradley Keoun

Bradley Keoun is the managing editor of CoinDesk's Tech & Protocols team. He owns less than $1,000 each of several cryptocurrencies.