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digital daily: Acyclical Bitcoin

“Bitcoin itself cannot scale to have every single financial transaction in the world be broadcast to everyone and included in the blockchain. There needs to be a secondary level of payment systems which is lighter weight and more efficient. Bitcoin transactions by private individuals will be as rare as…well, as Bitcoin based purchases are today,” observed Hal Finney, the computer scientist who received the first bitcoin transaction from Satoshi. It was written on Dec 30, 2010 and some saw it clearly and very early. The Lightning Network is precisely the Layer-2 that Finney saw as inevitable. It allows for peer-to-peer micro-payments and makes it economical to send a fraction of a penny. Astounding. A programmable payment system is exactly the type of application that will accelerate adoption. And it is rising independent of bitcoin’s price. Today, the capacity of the Lightning Network is 69% greater than it was at the peak price of bitcoin. That growth has been entirely organic. Now, there are institutional accelerants. Jack Dorsey and Block built “c=” at the depths of crypto winter last year. It was launched last week. @jack isn’t alone. Xapo became the first bank to use Lightning Network for payments – it puts Gibraltar on the digital banking map. Not to be outdone, Strike released an API to the public that allows you to send US dollars over the Lightning Network. Global micropayments that settle instantly at virtually no cost – it is the compelling killer application skeptics are waiting for and will lean against until it is on every mobile device. Wonder where we are headed? The view is clear, standing on the shoulders of giants like Hal Finney.