DIY workshop today! Have you always found that all this blockchain, Lightning Network, block stamping nonsense is sexy, but not frankly concrete? Are you more in the style of spending your weekends tinkering with a wooden pallet coffee table than immersing yourself in technical white papers?
I have great news for you, and in reality, I even have two: You will discover how the Lightning Network is on the verge of achieving its objectives (allowing fast transactions and for small amounts), but also – by invoking the crypto-MacGyver that lies dormant in you – you will learn how to build yourself, your own converter / distributor of satoshis with 3 pieces of string and chewing gum (or almost).
Little reminder on the Lightning Network
The “Lightning network” is not the name of the latest fashionable HQ in a superhero gang. Conceptualized and presented to the community in 2016 by Joseph Poon and Thaddeus Dryja (through a White Paper that you will find here), this innovation aims to solve one of the recurring problems criticized by the Bitcoin network: Its relative slowness.
It will be recalled that, by the very nature of its blockchain architecture and the latency times specific to the block mining rate (containing the validation of information transmitted over the network), the number of transactions hardly exceeds 7 per second (and again, thank you Segwit, there is still little, it was 3.5).
Relative to capacity VISA randomly (7,000 transactions / sec, constantly increasing), the match appears definitively folded.
This gap is even so large that the prospect of seeing our favorite currency realize its potential for “Internet currency” (see even “New World Currency “, That simple idea with devilish laughter as you pet the cat on your lap) seems likespooky utopia.
The code of Bitcoin being presented as supposedly unalterable, impossible to make the beast evolutionary with regard to its fundamental genetics (number of transactions per block, level of difficulty, rate of validation of the blocks – currently 1 every ten minutes…), Without going through various hard fork which, if they make the joy – and sometimes the fortune – of their instigators, all have a major drawback: They are not Bitcoin.
Like a flash in the night of technological uncertainty, shedding new light on the hitherto insoluble problem of “The incalability” supposedly from the Bitcoin network, so happens the Lightning Network whose proposal is both elegant and of a rather surreal concrete complexity: Establish a form of application overlay on the main network, on which would run the many small daily transactions, from morning coffee to pizza on Saturday evening.
This humble article is not intended to go into the more technical details of this project, but it is generally considered that only its outcome (or that of a similar value proposition) will be able to allow Bitcoin to deploy beyond the inner circle of the crypto community and speculatorss, to transform it into a real monetary tool (whether it is a good thing or a bad thing, particularly in terms of the valuation of BTC is a completely different debate).
Even if the stakes seem to you, I hope, clearer after this little refreshment, remains the nagging central question: All this is very nice but concretely, how does it work? Grab a cutter, glue, glitter (to put in your life), and find out how Pif Gadget – the real ones know – your next activity for a rainy Sunday: “Make your own ATM Lightning Network distributor of Satoshi at home”!
Cryptocurrencies and Creative Hobbies
A few days ago 21isenough, a crazy or brilliant handyman (the two terms are equal), proposed a small tutorial on Youtube and Twitter allowing to commit this:
” I built the LightningATM. The coins turn into bitcoin – literally in seconds – and the reception is done on the Lightning Network.
Have fun and build your own! ”
Fart the satoshis
Beyond the process which allows the magic execution of the thing, our inventor of the week has thus created a machine which allows you to convert small fiat currency to satoshis, in a few seconds.
It will be recalled for the new ptits that satoshi is the smallest of the decimals of bitcoin. 1 bitcoin = 100 million satoshis (otherwise abbreviated “Sat”). As of this writing, and to have a value scale, 1 euro = around 10,000 sat (which will surely make readers of 2025 laugh well).
You liked it ? Make it yours!
According to tradition, the dad of this wonderful magic cardboard box has published his work and made the entire process open source, which you can find on the Github page of the project.
LightningATM is presented as follows by its creator:
This LightningATM was built to distribute small amounts of BTC – obviously – it only accepts coins. It will demonstrate the power of Bitcoins Lightning Network. A two-cent coin is enough to buy satoshis on the LightningATM.
A physical coin exchanged for bitcoin and sent to your flash wallet in seconds. Use this project to educate family, friends or guests during your bitcoin meetup – a practical and easy discovery process for people new to Bitcoin.
The project Github explains step by step how create a similar ATM from scratch (even if it must be agreed that having some solid bases in programming will not be useless, as well as a certain talent for design). The list of necessary materials is indicated, including in particular a map Raspberry Pi Zero WH, a camera of the same brand, a module for inserting coins, or even the bazaar power supply. The whole will not exceed a few tens of euros.
Once mounted and configured, the ATM will be able to recognize the amount of money inserted in order to convert it into sat at the current rate. A simple dedicated application on smarphone will then be sufficient to enter this amount and generate a QR Code that the ATM will flash, validating the transaction on LN before feeding your wallet, in a few seconds!
And the magic currency of the Internet comes to life before your eyes!
A geek joke or a revolutionary turning point?
And if, relatively unnoticed for the moment, this invention in all its simplicity and obviousness was a decisive step in the famous democratization that everyone calls for? And if 21isenough, without necessarily being aware of it, had acted more for the “cause” than most of the “sector leaders” or hundreds of ICOs of 2017, who promised us financial inclusion, monetary independence and a tomorrows …For the result we know (take a handkerchief and think of something else)?
Beyond the technological feat embodied by Lightning Network and the little tour de force that 21isenough achieves, armed with its cutter and its good will, imagine for a moment that it is possible and even fun for everyone to transform the small change lying around on the coffee table and in the bottom of your pockets, into satoshis, in a few moments in dedicated machines placed in strategic locations (tobacconist, neighborhood grocery stores, associations, etc.)?
From its appearance, the fate of Bitcoin has regularly been closely linked to individual initiatives, and essentially disinterested.
As such, the initiative of our Géo-Trouvetou will perhaps mark the history of its imprint, perhaps seeing this modest shoe box finish in a future museum alongside the first telephone of Graham Bell ?
Nice to meet you, it’s Hellmouth! Editor-in-chief of , the crypto media you are honoring to survey right now (well done, you have taste).
Crypto-enthusiast of the second hour, nothing is more important to me than supporting the global adoption and democratization of the treasures that the blockchain offers us.
I write articles between two cocktails in Tahiti, my adopted island, and do not hesitate, if the opportunity arises, to feast on a plump scam or a little too enterprising Ponzi pyramid.
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