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MintCoin Development Update 2018-05-04

Hello everyone! It was Dodenherdenking today here in Holland. We remembered the dead from World War II and later wars with two minutes of silence. Let us all hope that the current wars and conflicts going on around the world today come to an end as quickly as possible, and that soon the only invasions will be new crypo currencies taking over the world.

On a happier note, it is also Star Wars Day! May the Fourth be with MintCoin.

Ciao MintCoin!

We got our first submission of a new translation of the MintCoin menus from pEteRbAn. He is going through the Qt localization for the coin and providing an Italian version. With luck we'll have Italian support for the MintCoin wallet in the next release.

MintCoin Project Continuity

One issue that I have struggled with since starting on MintCoin a few months ago is making sure we have project continuity, meaning the ability of the project to continue independent of any one individual. I believe that the project should try to make sure that it is always possible for someone new to pick up the work and add useful or fun things to it, even if other people may leave the project.

Using GitHub for the code is a good start for this. It is free, and is publicly available to anyone. Coders can make changes to the code and submit them using workflows that are familiar to most people working on open source code these days.

Having Travis CI build and test carries this on further, since it sits on top of GitHub and is also free and open. Today we build for almost all of our target platforms on Travis CI, and the results of that are visible for anyone interested.

Over the last couple weeks I have extended the Travis CI to publish the results of the builds to MEGA.nz. Like GitHub and Travis CI, MEGA is free, and runs on servers maintained by a company without any work needed by anyone in the MintCoin community. It provides ability to allow only users with the password to upload files, but also publish them in a way that anyone can read it, for example a recent build went here:

https://mega.nz/#F!nLZiTaDR!xTSt65WWAYH-78My09WJrw

It is easy to update the Travis CI to publish to a different MEGA account if this one is lost, or even to publish somewhere else like Amazon S3, Google Drive, or many other similar services.

On the development side we are starting to get a reasonable set of tools that can keep MintCoin alive no matter what happens to any one member of the development team.

However, there are a few things missing:

  • We do not have administrator access to the GitHub MintCoin account. This means that we cannot add or remove users. None of the existing administrators has replied to requests for this.

  • The social media situation is a bit of a mess. The owner of the most popular Twitter account does not actively participate in the project any more (please use @MintCoin_, which is run by an active participant). Nobody knows the owner of the Facebook page, although he has declared himself the CEO of MintCoin.

  • The web site is not actively maintained, and there are at least 3 of these that a new user may consider the "real" MintCoin site.

Everything can be fixed, and I think that we can be a community coin that also has enough tools and structure to make it run effectively. The goal should be to make sure that we everyone can help in their own way, while the project is able to continue even as people move on to other endeavors.

Working with Other Coins

I saw that Bitcoin Green was added to Cryptopia, and their goals seem similar to MintCoin. I was thinking maybe we could work together, and possibly even merge the coins at some point.

More recently I was approached by some folks from Social Send Coin who are interested in doing some collaborative work, I think mostly in the area of marketing.

I tend to think that we can work with other coin communities to make all coins stronger, as long as we have similar goals and technologies. If you are interested in this - or hate the idea - please speak up.

Code Changes

The only code change since the last update - except for our new translation - was getting the wallet to send the output of the build to a site so we can build our release packages, as mentioned in the discussion on continuity above.

Release Status

Since the last update, we have manged to push changes from all builds to the MEGA site so we can build release packages.

The release will be "2.1-beta1". The Etherpad with the plan is here:

https://public.etherpad-mozilla.org/p/MintCoin-2.1-release-planning

You can always look at the current state of the Travis CI for MintCoin here:

https://travis-ci.org/MintcoinCommunity/Mintcoin-Desktop-Wallet

For the release, we have two pieces of work (yes we said that last week, but this time for sure):

  • Add 32-bit Linux support to the Travis CI builds
    This should be possible with something called multiarch; a system where Linux can include libraries for more than one CPU family at a time. Using multiarch we should be able to build for both i686 (32-bit) and x86_64 (64-bit) CPU on Travis CI.

  • Build the packages for release For Windows we actually have MSI files, which should let us make an installers. Likewise for macOS we have some stuff to put into a DMG file which may provide an installer for Apple systems too. Finally, we need to include a snapshot in our release packages.

GitHub Repository Status

The official GitHub repository remains:

https://github.com/MintcoinCommunity/Mintcoin-Desktop-Wallet

No issues were closed in the official repository. We added one issue:

  • Always create MintCoin.conf on startup
    We should make sure that we always make a configuration file when the MintCoin wallet starts, if none is present yet. This will make it easier for users to customize their setup if needed.

Goal Recap

While the main focus is on the next release, there are also other goals, such as:

  • Speeding up the initial sync
  • Packages for popular distributions (like Debian and Fedora packages)
  • Wallet code automated testing
  • Reducing the memory footprint
  • Investigating mobile wallets

I've got a good feeling about this,
Shane Kerr

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