Crypto exchange OKCoin has continued to support Bitcoin (BTC) Core developers with a fourth grant being awarded to Bitcoin’s most active contributor since 2017, Marco Falke for an undisclosed six-figure sum. 

This grant brings the total amount provided as part of the company’s Independent Developer Grant to over $500,000.

OKCoin believes that funding open-source development of the Bitcoin network is critical to the growth of the entire crypto ecosystem. 

CEO Hong Fang said, “Supporting Marco’s work on strengthening the testing framework in addition to his general responsibilities as a maintainer is important to continuing quality development.” 

Crucial development

This grant will allow Falke to focus on modularizing the Bitcoin Core code, ensuring that the code is clearly segmented in order for developers to have a targeted focus. “Developers are typically good at supporting specific pieces of the code and this helps to clarify the responsibilities,” said Falke, adding that his work will also benefit users:

“Modularizing the code also provides user advantages; you can turn off modules, like the miner module, or the mempool module, which means you can run Bitcoin Core with less computational resources.”

Falke will also continue his work as a Bitcoin Core Maintainer, reviewing other contributions to ensure they are aligned with the community’s requirements while supporting new contributors to help them make an impact. 

“Educating new volunteers on the project and how the consensus model functions is a really important part of building the community. I was given this support when I joined, and so I want to pass it on.”

Prior to this grant, Falke was working with Chaincode Labs who have also supported his work on Bitcoin Core. This grant is instrumental in his work having an ongoing impact on the Bitcoin community as a whole. 

One of the future plans Falkes is working towards is the critical switch of Bitcoin code to C++17. “In two major releases we plan to switch to C++17, which allows us to drop library dependencies in which we have identified bugs” he explained, stating that “without the OKCoin grant, this would not be possible”.

The grant’s previous recipients include Bitcoin payment processor BTCPay ($100,000) and individual contributors Fabian Jahr and Amiti Uttarwar ($150,000). Past grant money has been used to support recent developments in user experience for BTCPay Server , improvements to the UTXO set, and functional test framework.

Promoting the whole crypto industry

Fang explained that through these grants OKCoin will build up a network of active contributors that could collaborate on larger projects:

“Our grant recipients don’t work for us or the exchange business — they stay on their own open source course. But we are very open to funding and/or contributing our own resources for larger projects that help the crypto industry as a whole.”

Grant recipients are not locked in an exclusive contract with OKCoin, she went on to say, suggesting that “the more companies funding developers the better and it is really exciting that we are seeing more and more crypto companies provide grants to Bitcoin devs in 2020.”

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