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On The Road So Far With Loom Network: Plasma Cash, ERC721x, And Sundries




The blockchain network looks toward the “technological horizon” with further research into Plasma Cash and other developments.

The team behind the scalable blockchain trading card game Zombie Battleground has made some progress since it recently launched PlasmaChain, an updated version of the ZombieChain sidechain, on the Loom Network. Matthew Campbell, co-founder of Loom, took to Medium to update the community regarding the team's development journey.

Campbell mentioned two key updates in September: First, Loom opened Zombie Battleground's card packs, delivering almost two million cards to the game's early backers. Card rewards varied based on the financial support individuals pledged on Kickstarter.

Second, the team developed a token standard, ERC721x, "to allow for batch transfers and gas efficiency, while maintaining full backward compatibility with ERC721." This new standard is based on the feature set of ERC1178 – or the multi-class fungible token standard – and the compatibility of ERC721, plus an "optional layer" between the two containing "features to support crypto-collectibles."

Looking ahead, the road for Loom includes several projects, including finding new ways to add utility to the network's LOOM token, expanding PlasmaChain to include integration with external testnets, adding third-party validators to the network, and improving the Loom software development kit (SDK).

One goal of note is further research into Plasma Cash.

Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin broached the concept of a modified Plasma system through Plasma Cash earlier this year. For a bit of context, Plasma is, at its core, a proposed solution to scale the Ethereum blockchain by integrating a framework of off-chain transactions, thereby improving network speeds and lowering gas costs.

Plasma Cash departs from this model in that instead of requiring authentication for each block on the chain, a coin ID would step in as a succinct proof of the network's transaction history. Validation through a coin ID would circumvent the need to monitor every block, and it would purportedly protect against double-spending and theft.

Campbell indicated that Loom is "doing heavy research and development around Plasma Cash and [has] a bunch of major features coming down the pipeline." Key points on the Plasma Cash roadmap include an "all-in-one technical paper" to explain the team's model, coming soon; a Plasma Debit system "for arbitrary denomination payments and token splits," expected for release in Q4 of 2018; and the capability for atomic swaps among multiple coins, also anticipated in quarter four.

Loom has a GitHub repository containing work on the Plasma Cash project, with 680 commits (revisions) and six contributors as of press.

The Loom crew initially launched Plasma Cash in June and integrated it with the SDK "to allow the use of ERC721 non-fungible tokens on Loom sidechains." When it was announced, though, the team noted that there were "still a number of potential complications with the Plasma Cash UX [user experience]," an area requiring more research on Loom's part.

Campbell said Loom would have more project updates in the future, especially relating to the network's two other sidechains, GameChain and SocialChain.

Dani Putney

Dani is a full-time writer for ETHNews. They received their bachelor's degree in English writing from the University of Nevada, Reno, where they also studied journalism and queer theory. In their free time, they write poetry, play the piano, and fangirl over fictional characters. They live with their partner, three dogs, and two cats in the middle of nowhere, Nevada.

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