Ripple’s CTO has launched a new company called Coil that includes an easy access smart contract product to rival Ethereum.
Smart Contracts Made More Accessible
Smart contracts are one of the much talked about little-used promises of the revolutionary technology brought by the blockchain. The problem with them in their current form is that they aren’t very user-friendly and can also be expensive to use. These are the reasons that Ripple Chief of Technology Stefan Thomas has created Codius, which he calls an operating system for the blockchain as part of his new company Coil.
Thomas, who once hosted Ethereum founder Vitalik Buterin as a couch guest, found that existing smart contracts lack simple integration abilities with outside data sources which makes them difficult to build practical applications on. With Codius developers can use common programming languages to integrate all sorts of date, Thomas was quoted in Fortune saying;
“[Codius] is an open source hosting platform available for anyone who wants a secure platform to built or host a smart contract, in the same way that cloud computing made web hosting more accessible, Codius will make experimentation on the blockchain more widely available because people won’t need to build from scratch.”
Thomas Talked it Over with Buterin
It is an ambitious project by Thomas who as CTO of Ripple was the primary creator of Interledger, a tool that allows different banking protocols to interact with one another. His interest in smart contracts goes back as far as 2014 when he published an early white paper on the subject possibly influenced by conversations he had with Buterin who he stayed with for several weeks in 2013. Buterin now is famous for creating and building Ethereum and Thomas says he still has a high regard for him but that Ethereum’s smart contracts aren’t scaled for easy adoption. He said,
“This open-source platform (Codius) allows smart contracts to be written in any popular programming language and it lowers the operating costs by several orders of magnitude compared to Ethereum. It will reduce the barriers to entry for many and opens up the possibility of decentralized mainstream applications built using blockchain,”
This will allow users to create smart contracts that can utilize third party information sources and can be accessed by regular web browsers instead of specialty software like Coinbase’s Toshi. Codius already has two users signed on Telindus, a large IT company in Luxembourg, and Wietse Wind, a developer of open source software tools based in the Netherlands.
Coil is formally an offshoot of Ripple as it will rely on some of the platform’s architecture, notably Thomas’ brainchild Interledger as a payment system. This may result in a boost to Ripple’s XRP price if Codius is able to catch on as the new standard for smart contracts, however it has tough and already established competition.