December 25th and January 15th have been revealed as the days when two different networks, Grin and Beam each offering slightly different custom builds of the privacy-oriented protocol Mimblewimble, are slated for launch .
Mimblewimble, the privacy-oriented protocol, was named after the Harry-Potter tongue-tying curse due to its ability to fuse transactions together such that they become indecipherable. Grin developer, Yeastplume said:
“It’s a privacy-centric chain in a new format without any of the baggage weighing down previous coins.”
Though both Grin and Beam have a common basis, there are a lot of differences as well. While the former has a large community which was organically formed after the announcement of Mimblewimble and had been under development since 2016, the latter came into the industry later, in 2018. The primary core developers of Grin are Antioch Peverell, Gary Yu, hashmap, Ignotus Peverell, Quentin Le Sceller, and Yeastplume. It uses a community funding model, similar to the one used by the Monero project, and though it is a less reliable income source, it increases the security of the project. Grin follows a highly principled, cypherpunk ideology which is inclusive of the no token premise or ICO, as well as volunteer-based development. Grin relies on a contemporary coding language called Rust and currently only offers a command-line wallet, and is less accessible for non-technical users. It believes that a sustained issuance will stabilize the currency and as a result Grin’s monetary policy is unfixed. Currently, a new token is issued every second, though this will decrease periodically every ten years.
Alex Romanov, the CTO said:
“Grin is structured as a research project. They do not receive any outside funding except for donations, they do it part-time, they’re doing it very slowly.”
When it formed, Beam, an Israel-based startup that’s offering a slightly different interpretation of the technology was treated with caution from the Grin community. Beam, initially was not open-source, leading suspicion to build surrounding the project, as according to Romanov, no one was aware of what was going on, and speculations were made galore. Beam’s code since has been made public, and as of now, both the projects have established a symbiotic relationship. Beam takes its example from privacy-centric cryptocurrency Zcash, maintaining a corporate structure, and funneling a portion of the block reward into a Foundation to support the blockchain’s development. Beam uses VC funding and hired a team of developers who work full time on the software to speed ahead of Grin in its implementation. Beam is coded in C++, has a heavy emphasis on usability and sees itself as a “store of value” coin that has a fixed issuance schedule akin to bitcoin.
“Our projects take different approaches, but we’re collaborating and exchanging ideas daily. [Mimblewimble] tech can only get stronger as a result.”
Guy Corem, an advisor to Beam and the former CEO of Israeli-based bitcoin mining firm Spondoolies-Tech said:
“We share a common goal which is to implement Mimblewimble in the most robust way possible.”