Cleaning up soon at Bitcoin Core?

The potential return to business of Bitcoin Core maintainer Wladimir van der Laan is being emulated. Would he be disappointed by those who took over?

The return of a veteran

Wladimir van der Laan is the most experienced maintainer of Bitcoin Core. He withdrew in 2022 because of the legal actions of Craig Wright (faketoshi) and his sidekick, billionaire Calvin Ayre.

He spoke about his blog following the legal setback of Craig Wright:

“I couldn't believe my ears when I heard the judge declare that:

-CSW is not the author of the Bitcoin White Paper
-CSW is not the person who communicated under the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto between 2008 and 2011.
-CSW is not the person who created the Bitcoin system.
-CSW is not the author of the first versions of the Bitcoin software.

After years of manipulation and harassment (I just noticed my first post on this was in 2016, when Gavin Andresen fell under its influence), I didn't expect the legal system to show so much common sense.

Remember: Craig Wright is a fraud. Not only that, but an utterly horrible person who uses his fraudulence as an excuse to purposely ruin people's lives. He deserves what happens to him. Or simply to be forgotten.

Now that it's over, I might become more active in bitcoin development again. But I don't promise anything. The last few years have been difficult for me, for this and other reasons. But we absolutely must draw a line under this story. »

As a reminder, Bitcoin Core is the implementation of the Bitcoin protocol used by more than 95% of nodes. Its code is maintained by hundreds of contributors. But only a handful of developers called “maintainers” have the power to authorize changes to the code. They are Michael Ford, Andrew Chow, Russ Yanofsky, Gloria Zhao and Hennadii Stepanov.

After Satoshi Nakamoto and Gavin Andresen, Wladimir van der Laan was the third to head Bitcoin Core. The position of project lead remained vacant following his departure.

Here is the history of Bitcoin Core maintainers:

Bitcoin core maintainersBitcoin core maintainers

Aside from Michael Ford, the current maintainers don't have much experience. Some, probably too young for such a responsibility, reacted badly to pressure regarding ordinals and other registrations.

The possible return of a seasoned developer will perhaps be an opportunity to restore order. Indeed, the revolt is brewing towards the ordinals and other Ponzian inscriptions which clog the blockchain.

Jimmy Song crushes the ordinals

Bitcoin Core developer Jimmy Song posted a long message on Nostr speaking out against ordinals:

“The last two years have been fruitful for Bitcoin. The Taproot soft fork has unlocked some exciting new possibilities. Such as Schnorr signatures which reduce the size of transactions necessary to open channels on the Lightning Network. […]

I would rather write about these real innovations, but I have to deal with a stupid and immoral scam: the ordinals, popularized by the gang of Taproot Wizards who are angry former maximalists. Their goal is to get revenge after being humiliated due to their support of a whole series of scams like BlockFi, Celsius and, of course, FTX. […]

Ask any supporter of ordinals what they bring to bitcoin. He will immediately refocus the discussion on the fact that protocol does not prohibit them from doing what they want. But just because you can do something doesn't mean you should do it. To paraphrase Chris Rock, you can drive with your feet, but that's not a good idea. […]

If you press them, they will answer that they contribute to the security budget by enriching the minors. Or that they undermine other altcoin launch platforms. So many extremely weak arguments. […]

My criticism of ordinals and NFTs in general is that there is no technical reason for them to be on a blockchain. They are already clearly centralized. You cannot look at an ordinal without special software foreign to the Bitcoin protocol. And it is yet another trusted third party who decides whether the ordinal belongs to you or not. […]

From a purely technical point of view, hosting a centralized project on a blockchain, and what's more, on the decentralized Bitcoin blockchain, makes no sense. […] The only motivation can only be to create the buzz by marketing them as something that would “help” Bitcoin. That's like saying spam helps email adoption. »

We highly recommend that Anglophiles read Jimmy Song's entire press release.

Many people take refuge behind the argument that filtering ordinals would be unacceptable censorship. But again, this is a fallacious argument.

In a decentralized system, everyone has the right not to relay transactions. My node, my transaction relay policy. The maintainers of Bitcoin Core should have quickly provided a button so that each node could choose to filter the ordinals' filth.

The maintainers preferred to stealthily rewrite the Bitcoin Core documentation to justify their inaction in the face of Bitcoin Magazine CEO David Bailey who, without scruples, made the registrations a business.

Our full article on this pathetic story unworthy of the maintainers of Bitcoin Core: Bitcoin Core developers under fire.

Fortunately, developer Luke Dash has released the Ordirespector patch. Hopefully the return of Wladimir van der Laan will soon make him redundant.

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