Devcon3: Day 2 Morning Brief – A Big Day For Wallets

It’s another day in paradise as programmers engage in lively discussions about their latest projects and enjoy presentations on some of the coolest developments for Ethereum. The hallways are buzzing with conversations on code and in the main hall, each reveal is met with jubilant applause.

This morning, Ethereum’s Go team leader, Péter Szilágyi performed a live demonstration of puppeth. Puppeth is “a CLI [Command Line Interface] wizard that aids in creating a new Ethereum network down to the genesis, bootnodes, signers, ethstats, faucet, dashboard, and more, without the hassle that it would normally take to configure all these services one by one.”

The audience was clearly blown away, with many posting praise for Szilágyi on Twitter.

Happily for readers, just moments after leaving the stage, Szilágyi posted slides from his presentation, entitled “Developers, Developers, Developers: Ethereum for all your networks!”

Next up was Marcus Ligi, an android developer who presented “Introduction to WALLETH – the Ethereum Android Wallet.” Ligi has also produced PassAndroid Passbook viewer and Offline Survival Manual, each of which has been installed more than 1 million times.

With WALLETH, Ligi forsook traditional user interfaces in a few ways. First, he explained, there is no need to prioritize password creation, especially when an account has no real value yet. A slide from his presentation showed the laborious process that a user might go through in making a password (entering a password, finding that it doesn’t meet the required standards, attempting a new entry, and finally receiving approval). This is a waste of time, so Ligi proposed that a password should only be created when there is actually value to protect.

The user interface for WALLETH is also a little unusual. To illustrate the flow of capital into and out of a wallet, there are arrows that show incoming transactions on the left and outgoing transactions on the right. It’s visually appealing and conveys a sense of harmony, but users will be the best judges of whether this approach is warranted.


In his remarks, Ligi noted the importance of key ownership by users rather than storage on a server. This is “quite obvious,” but even the most popular Ethereum wallet fails this basic test of centralization, he said. Ligi also encouraged the usage of open source software and platforms.

Next up, Status. To start his presentation, co-founder Jarrad Hope displayed a shocking slide, which showed the spike in Tor Messenger downloads, coinciding with the referendum on Catalan independence. Then, in one of the morning’s biggest announcements, he unveiled a hardware wallet. With echoes of Ligi’s presentation, Hope said that backing up a keyphrase is not required until there is value in an account.

Hope also discussed improvements to the Status messenger system including optimization for its Discover search tool and Status nodes, which will act as offline inboxes for messages. The company, he said, is targeting macOS, Linux, and Windows. Finally, Hope explained that Status hopes to use Open Bounty (a “bounty-based collaboration tool that plugs right into GitHub”) for the purpose of recruitment.