Will Clark: This decision was taken long before I joined the team, and even before Lisk was born, given that Lisk forked its codebase from the preceding Crypti project. However, most of the benefits of this widely popular language all applied back then, and I assume they informed the original decision.
JAXenter: Why not use a language specifically made for blockchains like Simplicity?
Will Clark: It’s important to clarify that languages like Simplicity are “made for blockchains” in the sense that it’s designed to mitigate specific difficulties and dangers involved in creating smart contracts on a blockchain platform. The code (that is, the contracts) you would write in Simplicity is on a different level of abstraction from the code you would write to set up a blockchain network capable of supporting smart contracts.
It’s not possible to use Simplicity for developing our current projects and it wasn’t designed for such use cases. For security reasons, the Lisk mainchain only supports a limited set of transaction types, and there is no support for smart contracts. However, after sidechains are live, it will be possible for a sidechain developer to support smart contracts in their DApp, i.e. where the effects and scope of such contracts will be set by the developer but limited to the sidechain. In this case, it would ultimately be up to the developer which language they use for smart contracts, whether Simplicity or something else.
JAXenter: What does Lisk have to offer?
Will Clark: Here is a brief list of our main products:
Lisk Core: the software which is run by the nodes which together constitute the network
LiskJS: our general-purpose universal library
Lisky: our command-line tool which wraps various LiskJS functions
Lisk Nano: our desktop wallet application
Lisk Explorer: with all the functionality you would expect of a blockchain explorer
With the upcoming release of version 1.0.0, all of our products will receive a major update.
JAXenter: What’s next for Lisk?
On February 20th we are hosting a major Relaunch event in Berlin, which will include the rollout of new front-end design, dashboard and wallet, among other announcements. Tune in to our YouTube channel for the live stream. Starts at 8:30 pm CET. Don’t forget to subscribe.