Reports in the ETH news recently show how one developer built a “centralized Ethereum” platform on top of the Bitcoin Lighting Network. Knowing that the Ethereum network was created to carry out complex applications that Bitcoin could not handle, a new app called Etleneum now brings the idea in full circle.
The pseudonymous developer Fiatjaf built Etleneum which is described as a “centralized” version of Ethereum that is running on payments from Bitcoin and its Lighting Network. This is why the name is “Etleneum” as a mixture of “Ethereum” and “Lighting.”
Just like Ethereum, Etleneum has “contracts” which are basically automated agreements over what rules need to be met before any money can be dispensed. The contracts are public like Ethereum’s and like the second largest blockchain by market capitalization, the platform Fiatjaf created is open for anyone to use.
However, Etleneum is not decentralized – the developer controls it all as he quickly noted:
“Lots of people think I invented some kind of decentralized trustless smart contract platform on Lightning, which would be amazing and probably impossible, but then they’re frustrated when I deny it,” he said.
All of this may sound odd since the entire point of Bitcoin and Ethereum is decentralization. However, the developer built the Etleneum and argues that there are limits to what can be totally decentralized and that this specific mixed set-up might prove to be more useful.
Etleneum went live in October and the app has garnered 200 registered users and more than 1,200 calls to use the system for making or participating in the contracts. This is a minor detail compared to the popularity of Ethereum in the crypto news, but is still something that many applied for.
Fiatjaf’s platform now allows “two or more mutually distrusting parties … to run some arbitrary code that will determine what happens with some quantity of money, all guaranteed by a third party trusted by all involved,” as he explained.
“If that was possible with a normal fiat bank, it would be pretty interesting already,” he said. “Today we have some apps doing basically that” [accepting money deposits and executing code that determines where that money will go].
Fiatjaf also talked about Google AdSense which allows users to get paid for posting ads on their websites based on how many clicks they are getting.
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