Home | Blog | ARK Monthly Update — April 2020 Edition
Justin Renken
Blockchain
Reading time: 23 min
Date: 6th May 2020

ARK Monthly Update — April 2020 Edition

April is complete and it is time for an overview! This blog post will cover last month’s highlights, activities, achievements and unique content. Let’s take a look at what’s been going on at ARK.io and in the ARK Ecosystem.

UPGRADES

UPGRADES The ARK news and update process has gotten some upgrades! We are bringing you a more detailed and complete update newsletter moving forward. We have also been producing monthly update episodes of the ARK Crypto Podcast, and in addition to that, we are going to start creating monthly update videos for the ARK YouTube channel as well. Lastly, we have categorized things better to improve the entire experience.

REMARKS

It’s safe to say that a theme for ARK in April has been ‘ARK in action.’ ARK technology is being put to the test with projects like ARK Scooters POC nearing completion (99% on ARK.io/Projects) and Unikname building with ARK Core, gearing up for livenet launch, which just occurred prior to this blog post . We have also been enticing developers by releasing tutorial series articles showing ARK technology in use for real world deployments, and continued our Let’s Explore Core series. We are also pleased to announce ARK has been integrated with Swipe.io wallet and VISA card, bridging ARK with over 40 million merchants worldwide through the Swipe service for European and UK customers. This month, Binance also launched ARK staking for its customers. April has shown a lot of progress within the ARK Ecosystem.

Justin Renken, ARK.io Senior Brand Manager

TOP TWEET

EXCHANGE NEWS

The ARK cryptoasset is available on over 30 exchanges and more exchanges are being added all the time — for a full list, visit ARK.io/Exchanges.

Content created by ARK.io is not investment advice nor a solicitation of investment. Consult your financial advisor.

Swipe.io Integration. This month, we are very excited to announce that ARK can now be bought, sold and spent using the Swipe app. ARK users throughout the European Economic Area and beyond now have the option to use the Swipe app to integrate ARK into their daily lives.

Swipe is a mobile application for Android and iOS that offers a multi-asset blockchain Wallet, allowing users to securely store assets. Users on the Swipe Wallet can buy, sell and pay with their cryptocurrencies to fiat directly within the wallet application as well as purchase gift cards and make instant exchanges between all supported assets.

Swipe users can now buy and sell cryptocurrencies via their linked bank account or cards, spend it to fiat using Swipe Visa, and exchange these coins instantly with all the supported coins in the Swipe Wallet platform. With VISA behind the wheel, this app bridges ARK with over 40 million merchants worldwide.

View more details and media regarding this integration here.

ARK Staking Launched on Binance Cryptocurrency Exchange. Binance now supports ARK staking which started on April 15th. Binance will take live snapshots of user balances and increase ARK holdings by users according to the total ARK generated by the Binance staking delegate multiplied by the ratio of the holdings for the given user. Users must hold at least five ARK on the exchange to qualify, and rewards are calculated daily and distributed monthly.

View tweet announcement here and view Binance’s article details here.

TEAM NEWS

ARK was founded by an elite team of blockchain experts and enthusiasts from around the globe. Now, with more than 30 core team members, from 12 different countries — we take decentralization to a whole new level.

ARK Hires Jolan Beer as PHP Developer. Jolan will be fully focused on the development of the next generation of the ARK Deployer that will come to light later this year. The new ARK Deployer is being built with Laravel, a PHP web application framework. Jolan is most interested in web development in general, but he mostly specializes in Laravel / PHP and Python. His daily arsenal also revolves around front-end bits which are mostly done in VueJS and TailwindCSS. In the near future, he’d also like to spend some time on functional programming with Elixir and learn more about that.

On the question of why he joined ARK:

“Because it’s the project I’m the most tied to, the community, the tech, and the team. I’ve been around for years now and learned a lot while being here, and I had the idea to join the team for a while now.” — Jolan Beer

We couldn’t be happier to have Jolan join the ARK Team and offer his skills and talents in furthering the ARK Ecosystem. Welcome to the ARK family Jolan, we hope you’ll enjoy working with us and keep grinding and learning while becoming an integral part of this team. Check out his GitHub account at https://github.com/Highjhacker.

View the full article and learn more about Jolan here.

ARK TECHNOLOGY USAGE

The ARK Core Framework is an open-source toolbox that developers can utilize to power various use cases using blockchain technology. The well-documented technology stack coupled with easy blockchain creation tools such as the ARK Deployer make it simple for developers to dive into this emerging technology.

Unikname Building with ARK Core. Unikname Connect was born as a European alternative for social authentication. The goal with Unikname Connect is to offer a respectful alternative to user privacy. The distributed network and the protocol dedicated to handle IDs rooted in the blockchain is called uns.network, aiming to secure any web and mobile connections and to protect the user’s privacy. This blockchain is specialized in providing decentralized ID (also called DID), and offer a good Distributed Public Key Infrastructure (also called DPKI) solution, the basis of the next generation of authentication protocols. Unikname provides universal anonymous IDs, formatted like this — @unikname, secured by this uns.network blockchain, to empower privacy and cyber-security over the day to day web. Unikname Solutions makes the uns.network blockchain capabilities available to businesses and every web user through DApp, SDKs and API.

Learn more about uns.network in their blog article here, and listen to them on the ARK Crypto Podcast here.

ARK Scooters POC is nearly complete.

ARK Scooters POC is nearly complete.ARK Scooters Teaser. If you hadn’t yet noticed, there is a Proof of Concept nearing completion on ARK.io Projects called ARK Scooters, which takes ARK technology and showcases it within the world of IoT. The project is 99% (updated) complete! Stay tuned on all channels for news and details about this project.

View ARK.io Projects for project progress.

Powered by ARK Program Evolution. When we started the “Powered by ARK” (PBA) program, our goal was to bring the projects building on ARK together. Building these types of relationships with projects gives them greater access to the ARK team and a greater ability to provide feedback and insight into the Platform. After all the steps of the application process were completed, the feeling and expectation were that ARK had the final say for which projects were approved and which were told to reapply in the future. This was not the goal for Powered by ARK. It made the program seem less inclusive and encouraged projects to look to ARK to provide a stamp of approval for their project. After speaking internally we decided it was best to make some adjustments to the program:

  • Inclusivity — No one party should be responsible for membership. Especially not the ARK Team.
  • Collaboration and Cooperation — All members should have equal standing, equal rights and equal access. The fundamental goal should be to help one another and work together.
  • Free — Projects can join the Ecosystem at all stages of development. No financial barrier to entry should exist.

By making PBA more inclusive it allows for projects to build towards a partnership with ARK. Whether its providing feedback on the ARK platform, collaborating on a project together or creating a plugin, we strive to find ways to work together.

Learn more about the evolution of the Powered by ARK Program here.

ARK WALLET UPDATES

The ARK desktop and mobile wallets are highly secure. The desktop wallet even integrates with the Ledger Nano hardware wallet devices. They are extremely easy to use and launch instantly with no need to sync. Plus, with the ARK Public Network having eight second block times, you can even see your transactions occur in near real-time. Whether you’re checking your balance, sending and receiving funds, or voting for your preferred delegate — ARK wallets make it as easy as possible.

There have been no new updates for the wallets during April, so the versions below are up to date! Be sure to always use the newest versions of the applications.

DESKTOP WALLET

The current version of the ARK Desktop Wallet is v2.9.1. For a full list of improvements, check article here.

MOBILE WALLET

The current version of the ARK Mobile Wallet is v1.8.0. For a full list of improvements, check article here.

ARK CORE NEWS

ARK Core is a lightweight but very powerful code base that functions as the base component of the entire ARK Ecosystem. Developed in TypeScript, the ARK Core’s modular architecture empowers developers to modify, configure or extend all aspects of the code base with ease.

ARK Core Version Releases. Taken from the Development Report, the following minor Core releases were made public during the month of April:

  • 2.6.34 at Tue, Apr 28, 2020 6:10 AM

Let’s Explore Core v3 Blog Series New Articles. We recently made ARK Core v3 code public, and have begun moving Core v3 through internal development and testing cycles. To celebrate, we have been publishing technical articles taking a closer look at it. Check out the Let’s Explore Core articles in this list:

*New in April 2020

DEVELOPMENT REPORT

The ARK Monthly Development Report covers public releases among ARK open source projects, all pull requests (opened, closed, merged), all issues opened and closed in every ARK Ecosystem public repository, the number of contributors during that month, the number of new stargazers and total lines of GitHub code added or deleted. The report has intricate links to GitHub repos, events and releases. We’d like to extend a huge thanks to all our contributors!

See the Development Report for the recent month here.

NETWORK STATISTICS REPORT

This network statistics report summarizes network activity on the ARK Public Network for the recent month.

Total Network Transactions

Total: 56,390 Avg per block: 0.1742 Per type: Transfers: 52,589 (93.26%) Multipayments: 3,190 (5.66%) Votes: 602 (1.07%)Second Signatures: 1 (0.00%) Delegate Registrations: 1 (0.00%) Business Registrations: 2 (0.00%) Business Resignations: 1 (0.00%) Bridgechain Registrations: 2 (0.00%) Bridgechain Resignations: 1 (0.00%) Bridgechain Update: 1 (0.00%)

2,159 unique wallets sent an outgoing transaction.

Total Blocks

Full: 111 (0.03%) Empty: 313,332 (96.81%) Non-empty: 10,206 (3.15%) Total: 323,649 Missed: 351

Total Network Fees

Total: 2,258.79950654 Ѧ *Per type:***Transfers: 1,675.46275941 Ѧ Multipayments: 390.67563000 Ѧ Votes: 144.76542513 ѦSecond Signatures:** 5Ѧ Delegate Registrations: 25 Ѧ Business Registrations: 4.10303547 Ѧ Business Resignations: 2.95138890 Ѧ Bridgechain Registrations: 5.75980394 Ѧ Bridgechain Resignations: 3.03819445 Ѧ **Bridgechain Update:** 2.04326924 Ѧ

Total Network Votes

Voting Wallets: 41,550 Voting Wallets > 1 ARK: 18,774 Total ARK Voting: 86,615,976.13041480 Ѧ

FRANCE ACTIVITIES

ARK is incorporated as an SCIC in France (ARK Ecosystem SCIC), giving ARK a leg up when interfacing with the legacy financial system. This SCIC is the first of its kind for crypto in France.

ADAN Activities. ARK Ecosystem is a founding member of ADAN, an association of blockchain technology companies designed to further the mission of the technology in France and the EU. More information on ADAN is available in the blog article linked here. See activities below:

ADAN Answers EU Consultation. ADAN (Association pour le développement des actif numériques) has answered to the EU Consultation on cryptoassets. The Association is thankful to the European Commission for this opportunity to express its views on the status of the cryptoassets industry and its future, but also on the way the EU regulation on crypto-assets should be tailored. The answer notably contains:

  1. A definition of crypto-assets
  2. A guideline for an effective crypto-assets taxonomy
  3. ADAN’s opinion on:
  • The relevance of a EU-level regulation for the industry players
  • Risks and benefits of stable coins
  • Regulation of service providers
  • Horizontal questions (market integrity, KYC/AML, consumer and investor protection, supervision and oversight)
  • Security tokens and adaptation of EU financial framework.

The answer to the consultation is available here.

State of the Industry Survey Regarding COVID-19. The health situation related to COVID-19 has impacted all sectors of the French economy. The actors of digital assets and blockchain are not spared. ADAN is launching a major investigation to assess the state of the industry during this period. This exercise is crucial so that the authorities have a better vision of the difficulties and needs encountered by the sector. This survey is fully in line with the mission of representing all members, French players in the digital asset industry.

All companies involved in all or part of digital assets or blockchain were invited to participate in this survey. The survey only takes 5–10 minutes and the information gathered will be compiled in a future report. The latter will be sent to the competent authorities.

Digital Assets and COVID-19: ADAN Launches its Dedicated Site. The economic environment linked to COVID-19 has impacted all sectors of the French economy. The actors of digital assets and blockchain are not spared. ADAN has been involved since the start of the crisis with its members and all industry players, through the following actions:

  1. The creation of an ad hoc internal working group to facilitate the exchange of information between members and improve the coordination of actions carried out.
  2. The drafting of a scoping note on the theme “COVID-19 and transformations of the financial industry” in which the Association presents different solutions by which digital assets could support the financial center in this situation, as well as mutations more fundamental than these could generate in the long term.
  3. The publication of a survey (still in progress) aimed at providing an overview of the crypto industry after these first weeks of the crisis, in a summary to be published soon.
  4. The creation of a database presenting member solutions in response to the crisis.

ADAN also maintains, from the start of the crisis, a close and regular dialogue with the authorities (Ministry of Economy and Finance, Bpifrance, AMF and ACPR) with a view to raising issues and needs specific to the industry digital assets and blockchain emanating from these economic conditions.

The web resource is viewable here.

Learn more about ARK.io co-founding ADAN here, and see their site here.

ARK TIMELINE

ArkTimeline.com is a community resource built and maintained by the ARK Community Committee. The entire history of all ARK achievements and accomplishments are available there, and they are both sortable and filterable.

Here’s a quick rundown for this past month, excluding events mentioned elsewhere in this update article:

  • On April 9th, ARK Co-Founder Travis Walker participated in an online poker tournament where a portion of the proceeds went to help fight COVID-19. Travis was also joined by another ARK Co-Founder, Mike Doty. Travis used personal funds to list ARK.io as one of the sponsors of the tournament as well. The Crypto vs. COVID tournaments in collaboration with The Giving Block raised over $25,000 in round one to support relevant charities. Travis and Mike also participated in the second round which occurred on April 23rd. Round two raised over $42,000, combined with sponsorships the 2 rounds raised over $70,000. More tournaments may occur in the future, and you can learn more at CryptoCOVID19.com.
  • ARK Partner Wolfram Programming Language, recently added ARK to the Wolfram Language and Mathematica in new version 12.1. Wolfram Mathematica(usually termed Mathematica) is a modern technical computing system spanning most areas of technical computing — including neural networks, machine learning, image processing, geometry, data science, visualizations and others. The system is used in many technical, scientific, engineering, mathematical and computing fields. It was conceived by Stephen Wolfram and is developed by Wolfram Research.
  • Launching HTML5 Games in the ARK Desktop Wallet Tutorial Series. This series is aimed at developers of all skill levels. The goal of this series is to be able to convert an HTML5 game to work as a fully functioning plugin within the ARK Desktop Wallet. The first set of tutorials will explain how to interact with the blockchain in a standalone HTML5 environment before finally jumping over into the ARK Desktop Wallet. During April, a six-part series was made public for developers to review:
  • Launch Article
  • Part One: How to import an ARK wallet address into your application
  • Part Two: Creating the Backend for your Plugin
  • Part Three: Making your game work with a betting system
  • Part Four: Implementing Game Logic into your Plugin
  • Part Five: Determining how Prizes Work
  • Part Six: Launching your game as a wallet plugin
  • All other events and activities are listed elsewhere in this monthly update. All caught up!
  • See years of achievements for ARK at *ARKTimeline.com.
  • See what the future holds for ARK at *Roadmap.ARK.io.
  • Subscribe for real-time news at *Twitter.ARK.io.

VIDEOS

ARK has a growing YouTube channel that features technical discussions and updates, motion graphic explainers, community videos and crypto adventure vlogs. Watch our videos at Youtube.ARK.io and subscribe to our channel in one click using this special link.

ARK Core v2.6 Video. ARK.io builds and maintains, with the help of an international community of developers, a modular TypeScript blockchain we call ARK Core. We added many new features with a recent major upgrade, bringing the Core version to 2.6. Take a quick look at what the ARK Core offers blockchain technology developers:

ARK Core: A Modular TypeScript Blockchain

ARK.io Monthly Update March 2020 Video. If you missed it from last month, check out the March 2020 edition of the ARK.io Monthly Update video:

Watch our videos at Youtube.ARK.io and subscribe to our channel in one click using this special link.

PODCASTS

The ARK Crypto Podcast releases weekly episodes all about ARK, featuring interviews, monologues, tutorials, reports, presentations and more. The show aims for a 30-minute runtime and releases new episodes every Friday. Subscribe on iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher, Soundcloud, Spotify, Castbox and more. Details, external links and show notes are available at Podcast.ARK.io.

Check out the episodes released last recent month:

Blockchain Legal Roundup with Ray Alvarez Featuring the EARN IT Act
ARK.io Monthly Update March 2020
Swipe App Integration and Why the Philippines Could Be the Next Big Thing in Crypto Adoption
ARK Core Values Deep Dive, Scalability

Subscribe and see details, show notes, related links, timestamps and more at Podcast.ARK.io.

COMMUNITY SERVICE SPOTLIGHT

Some members mentioned in the Community Service Spotlight are ARK delegates, who secure the ARK network and provide community services. Their inclusion here is in no way an endorsement from ARK.io to vote for any specific delegates, and you should always do your own research and consider all the options when voting for a delegate. ARK.io does not run the ARK Public Network.

Here’s the Community Service Spotlight for this month:

The Community Service Spotlight pulls entries from Reddit.ARK.io. To get something featured here, simply make a post there, and subscribe there for more community content and discussions.

NOTABLE REDDIT POSTS

The Ark Ecosystem Subreddit is a great place to seek ARK knowledge, and you can always find new and engaging content there. New to ARK? Check out my Welcome to ARK Reddit Post with simple instructions to follow.

Here are some notable posts this month:

You can browse more content and contribute your own voice to the ARK Subreddit at Reddit.ARK.io. You may even receive an ARK tip from a community member using Delegate Cryptology’s intuitive ArkTippr Reddit tipbot.

AMAs

Ask-Me-Anythings are periodically conducted where ARK team members answer questions by community members and developers, as well as 3rd party organizations taking questions from the community as well.

Two AMAs took place for the month of April, where IoT, Desktop Wallet and Core were all topics.

These AMAs take place on Slack.ARK.io. Follow ARK on Twitter for invitations to join future AMAs. AMA Transcripts are available on the ARK.io resource ARK Answers or by reviewing chat history of the #AMA channel in Slack.ARK.io.

BOUNTY & SECURITY PROGRAM

ARK runs monthly bounty programs for coders who contribute to our codebase on the ARK Ecosystem GitHub. Independent programmers can work side by side with our international team and make the ARK toolkit even more powerful and stable.

In this recent month, we’d like to acknowledge some of the top earners of ARK bounties:

  • GitHub user ‘dated’ earned $60 USD and a 20% bonus.
  • GitHub user ‘kalgoop’ earned $40 USD and a 10% bonus.
  • For the full list of bounty earners and GitHub links, the Bounty Program Report for this recent month can be found here. Thanks to all the contributors!

Multiple coders are contributing to the ARK toolkit 24/7, and you can too — it’s fun, rewarding and you can earn ARK as well!

Get started earning ARK bounties by going here. To report an issue or suggest a feature for ARK projects as a non-coder, follow the video tutorial here.

ARK GRANTS

ARK Grants Launched a 1 Million ARK Fund. ARK has always placed a large focus on our community of developers. From our Development and Security Bounties to our previous Tier 0 program, we have a wide range of opportunities for developers to get involved in the community and get paid to contribute to ARK. The ARK Grants program is an expansion and refinement of our current offerings, providing a war chest of funds to show our dedication to our community and the ARK Ecosystem.

Technologies and frameworks, applicable project types and proposal submission process can be found in the ARK Grants launch article here.

ARK Messenger Funded by ARK Grants Tutorial Article. ARK Messenger, a fully autonomous and secure chat service built entirely on ARK technology is now officially complete! Built by a community member and ARK delegate ‘Lemii’, ARK Messenger runs on its own customized bridgechain. In addition, ARK Messenger also makes use of ARK’s Generic Transaction Interface(GTI) to handle the processing of chat messages. The third installment of a tutorial series aimed at developers became available during April.

See the full launch article for ARK Messenger by visiting here. As a developer, you can explore the mechanics of the project and apply them to your own idea through a blog article series available here: Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3.

ARK COMMUNITY COMMITTEE

The ARK Community Committee creates and deploys community resources through anonymous and sponsored ARK donations. Completed ACC projects include:

During this recent month, the committee continued work on codename ‘Project VIDERE II,’ consisting of market research, with chatter visible on Discord.ARK.io #committee channel. Currently, a few committee members are working on certain aspects of the project via DMs.

To join the ACC, locate me ’(Justin (doubled1c3)’ on Discord.ARK.io.

ARK COMMUNITY FUND

The ACF is like the community version of ARK Grants and is not managed by ARK.io. If you have an idea for an ARK project, large or small and you are looking for funding, consider submitting a proposal to the ARK Community Fund for review. The ARK Community Fund started as a community initiative and the elected board reviews ideas and projects that enhance ARK. Their website is ArkCommunity.Fund.

The ACF is running some giveaways on the #ark_community_fund channel of Slack.ARK.io. Join and check out the chatter in the channel.

WHAT’S NEXT

Now that ARK Core v2.6 is live on the ARK Public Network, the ARK Team has updated its flagship product, the ARK Deployer, to deploy v2.6 chains. That means anyone who is interested in an easy way to create and customize a blockchain will also be able to take advantage of new features and transaction types. However, the development of the ARK Deployer hasn’t stopped there. In fact, massive new powers are coming to the ARK Deployer, and development is nearing completion. Improvements include one-click deployment, which handles the genesis node and peer deployment in the background using cloud services. Bridgechain founders will be able to manage their chain after the fact from within the all-new ARK Deployer front end interface. Even deploying future nodes of an already established chain will be possible. This is one of the major focal points for ARK.io as we move through this quarter. Stay tuned to the ARK Blog and ARK Roadmap for further updates.

FEEDBACK SURVEY

Take a short three-minute feedback survey so we can learn more about your opinions on how we’re doing. We review and track this feedback and use it to further improve our efforts.

Take the three-minute feedback survey here.

GET INVOLVED

Here’s a quick list of what your first steps might be to get involved with ARK:

Looking forward to May! Stay safe!

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