One year ago today, Counterparty emerged as an innovative project with a mission to provide a peer-to-peer financial market within the Bitcoin protocol and represent a step towards the democratization of finance.
We started our journey with a bold move. On January 2nd, 2014, we invited everyone who recognized Counterparty’s value to burn their bitcoins and initialize balances in a fair, distributed and transparent way. Since that time, we have been working hard on developing the Counterparty platform, guided by our passion for Bitcoin and its potential.
Now, we’re happy to announce our 1st Year Anniversary, reflect on our accomplishments and invite you to celebrate the first Birthday of the Counterparty project.
Reflecting Back on 2014
Over the last year, Counterparty has evolved from a simple idea into the most advanced platform for creating financial instruments on top of Bitcoin. We’ve watched how our project laid the groundwork for the development of innovative businesses by offering additional features all while preserving the security, integrity and reliability of the bitcoin network.
Let’s take a look back at our major milestones during the past year and discuss future plans as we enter the next phase of the Counterparty project.
January – We started with a one-month long “proof-of-burn” period by sending Bitcoins to an address that has no known or discoverable private key, ensuring that all 2,648,755 XCP that will ever exist were created and distributed in a fair, transparent and public manner.
February – Sergio Lerner and Peter Todd, two digital currency security experts, accepted our invitation to perform comprehensive audits on the Counterparty code. We also started our official bug-bounty program, offering tiered rewards that encourage people to study the Counterparty source code and report vulnerabilities to developers in a responsible fashion.
March – We introduced a new feature: paying dividends with Bitcoin. Counterparty enabled users to issue stocks and pay dividends in BTC or XCP to shareholders, automatically and trustlessly.
In March, we also launched Counterwallet on Testnet and added a new full-time developer to our team: Ouziel Slama.
April – We completed our first independent code audit focused on the security of counterpartyd and the Counterparty protocol. The audit was completed by a professional cryptographer Sergio Demian Lerner with no significant security holes found.
April was also the month of the Counterparty’s first public appearance on the Silicon Valley Road Show, followed by speaking at Inside Bitcoins in Hong Kong.
May – A new member joined our team: Niki Wiles as the Community Relations manager. Niki’s role was to provide leadership and structure needed to shape the Counterparty community into an effective and self-organizing network.
In May, the first-ever artist cryptocurrency was launched on the Counterparty platform: the Tatiana Coin by Tatiana Moroz, a New Jersey-based singer-songwriter and entrepreneur.
July – We introduced fully trustless games on the Bitcoin blockchain which bypass the need for trusted oracles and broadcast feeds. Due to the distributed nature of our solution, nobody could control the outcome of any game except the players themselves. To show this feature in action, we built Rock-Paper-Scissors (RPS) and Rock-Paper-Scissors-Lizard-Spock (RPSLS) into Counterparty.
October – In October, Overstock.com CEO Patrick Byrne announced partnership with Counterparty on a project named Medici, a front-end and portal to the decentralized stock exchange of the Counterparty platform. The goal of the project is to build a cutting-edge stock market on top of the Bitcoin blockchain, and help Bitcoin do for Wall Street what it has already begun to do for payments.
November – A new member joined our team: Ivana Zuber as the General Manager to help with everyday business development, marketing, product management, and support activities.
Another event this month was the celebration of the 100,000th transaction on the Counterparty network. On November 11th, we reached this major milestone and are seeing an increasing number of transactions on a daily basis.
Without a doubt, the most exciting news in November came from our development team who have successfully ported Ethereum Project’s programming language and virtual machine over to the Counterparty platform and enabled the execution of Turing Complete Ethereum code directly on the Bitcoin blockchain.
Finally, on November 17th we held an AMA on the Bitcoin subreddit and discussed all things Counterparty with our community.
December – December was the month of great progress in terms of development and addition of new features. We added multisignature support, enabled the creation of free numeric asset names, implemented Chinese translation in Counterwallet and worked hard on code refactoring, security auditing and bug fixing.
In December we also launched the Counterparty Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to fostering the growth and development of the Counterparty project, and hired a new developer: Karol Pogonowski to work on the counterpartyd testing suite.
Lastly, we launched the Counterparty merchandise store to offer Counterparty-branded items to everyone interested in wearing our colors and helping fund the development of our project.
Message From the Founders
Adam, Evan and I started Counterparty with the lofty goal of creating a full-fledged platform that allowed the potential of the Bitcoin blockchain to be realized. Like most Big Ideas, it was unclear if we’d be truly successful with this at the time, but we decided to keep things simple, and focus on building and enhancing the technology, day-by-day, and working with the needs of the users of the product as they arose.
A whirlwind of a year down the road, we can look back with gratitude to the many that put their faith in Counterparty by burning bitcoins, building a business, site, or tool on the technology, buying XCP, and more.
We’re proud of what we’ve been able to do together so far, and are excited about the tremendous growth and change that 2015 can bring for blockchain technology adoption, and for Counterparty itself.
Looking Forward to 2015
It has been a great year, and we have even bigger plans for 2015: hiring new developers, releasing the desktop wallet, launching smart contracts on mainnet, electing the official Board of Directors, working with exchanges to support XCP, working with other business who want to build their products on Counterparty, and much more.
We’ve learned a lot, heard great feedback from our community, and continue to work hard every day on fulfilling our mission to become the world’s most advanced platform for smart contracts. We believe now, more than ever, that Counterparty can help transform the field of finance for the better.
We’re doing our best to create innovative and exciting features, and the results speak for themselves. Our community is growing fast and we want to thank you all for taking part and giving us the confidence to move forward. Whether you’ve been with us from the start or have just begun your journey with Counterparty, thank you for being a part of the our thriving community.
We’d love for you to celebrate with us on Twitter using the hashtag #CounterpartyTurnsOne. We’ll be randomly selecting participants throughout the weekend to receive $20 worth of Counterparty celebration coupons to spend in the Counterparty-merchandise store.
Let’s make this a year of XCP. Happy anniversary!