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BitVMX: Envisioning BTC-Powered Programs with Linux on Bitcoin

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BitVMX: Envisioning BTC-Powered Programs with Linux on Bitcoin

Researchers in the Bitcoin community are developing a new open-source framework called BitVMX, which aims to allow for the secure building and execution of complex applications and functions on Bitcoin’s base layer. Backed by RootstockLabs, a major Bitcoin layer-2 protocol, BitVMX is an open-source, peer-reviewed framework for developing Bitcoin-based programs. Sergio Demian Lerner, chief scientist at RootstockLabs, provided details about the BitVMX project and its potential impact on the Bitcoin ecosystem. The project is set to be officially introduced at the Bitcoin++ Austin conference, along with the release of its white paper.

BitVMX enables funds to be locked in an unspent transaction output (UTXO) with a spend condition that depends on the execution of a program. The program input does not need to be defined when the UTXO is created. This framework has the potential to power various applications and functions, even allowing developers to run Linux on Bitcoin. BitVMX could facilitate bridges to Bitcoin, allowing the flow of BTC between the main chain and sidechains like Rootstock, enabling interaction with decentralized applications (DApps) and smart contracts.

One of the use cases for BitVMX is the creation of aggregator oracles that collect and verify data from different sources and store them on the Bitcoin network in an automated and decentralized manner. BitVMX supports Zero-Knowledge Succinct Non-Interactive Argument of Knowledge (zk-SNARK) and Zero-Knowledge Scalable Transparent Argument of Knowledge (zk-STARK) verifiers directly on Bitcoin, opening up possibilities for applications like zero-knowledge contingent payments and autonomous bug bounty programs.

The Bitcoin community has expressed concerns about startups promoting Bitcoin layer-2 solutions that claim to operate natively on-chain. Lerner emphasized that BitVMX is not associated with any token sale and offers a more secure and decentralized approach without relying on collateralization in foreign tokens. He urged users to stick to proven solutions like the Lightning Network, Liquid, and Rootstock, rather than risking their funds on untested or unknown solutions.

BitVMX builds upon the foundational work of Robin Linus’ BitVM framework, using a streamlined approach to execute central processing unit instructions directly through Bitcoin script opcodes. This approach makes it more suitable for real-world applications and enables use cases such as running sidechain light clients and verification using zk-SNARKs. The framework brings disputed computation to Bitcoin in an efficient and secure manner, allowing for a range of new possibilities.

Lerner believes that BitVMX will inspire a new wave of Bitcoin builders by expanding the network’s functionality. He highlighted the framework’s ability to enable more complex spending constraints for Bitcoin’s base layer. Lerner suggested that Bitcoin’s scripting language could benefit from the inclusion of key opcodes to make BitVMX more cost-effective and efficient. This project could shift the narrative around Bitcoin’s capabilities and potentially lead to the reintroduction of opcodes like OP_MUL or OP_CAT.

7 thoughts on “BitVMX: Envisioning BTC-Powered Programs with Linux on Bitcoin

  1. Who needs more spending constraints? Bitcoin is already restrictive enough.

  2. Including more opcodes? That’s just asking for more vulnerabilities.

  3. I don’t see any real benefit to using BitVMX. It’s just a buzzword.

  4. This BitVMX framework sounds too complicated and unnecessary. Bitcoin is fine the way it is.

  5. Lerner’s suggestion to reintroduce opcodes like OP_MUL or OP_CAT is intriguing. It could make BitVMX even more cost-effective and efficient. Let’s push the boundaries!

  6. BitVMX leveraging Robin Linus’ BitVM framework shows the power of collaboration in the Bitcoin community. 👥 Together, we can achieve great things! Excited about the possibilities! 🌈

  7. Wow, this new open-source framework BitVMX sounds incredibly promising! It could revolutionize the way applications and functions are built on Bitcoin’s base layer. Kudos to the researchers in the Bitcoin community!

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