Exclusive: Liquid Network gets its first general-purpose Javascript library

Blockstream’s Liquid Network now features its own Javascript library for developers to easily interact with the blockstream.

Called LiquidJS, it was developed and announced by pTokens, an interoperability project that works to bring assets through the chain. The open source library simplifies access to Liquid Network for external applications, with no dedicated node configuration requirements.

Thomas Bertani, founder of pTokens, described it as the equivalent of the Ethereum web3.js library in a conversation with Cointelegraph. Javascript is currently among the most popular programming languages used by virtually all web applications in some form. As such, Javascript libraries for interacting with blockchains are used „by several thousand projects,“ Bertani said.

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He explained that Liquid’s library allows for a wide range of uses, including easy integration with wallets. Currently, very few vendors support Liquid, and Blockstream Green is the only software wallet available to average users. But the library’s capabilities go beyond that:

„It can also be used with DApps: financial tools, swaps, private transactions, etc. For example, this library will allow interoperability projects like pTokens to add support for Liquid Network“.

In a conversation with Cointelegraph, Blockstream’s marketing director, Neil Woodfine, said that, „based on the popularity of BitcoinJS in recent years, LiquidJS should further accelerate the deployment of Liquid applications.

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He also explained that Blockstream’s focus right now is on „the core technology that strengthens the foundation of the Liquid Network,“ citing an upcoming upgrade to a federation of dynamic validators.

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The Liquid Network is commonly referred to as a Bitcoin side chain (BTC), since it uses an extended version of Bitcoin as its native currency. While its main purpose is to allow fast BTC transfers between exchanges, its asset feature is being used by a game developer to create non-expendable tokens.

Liquid is, in many ways, an improved version of Bitcoin, since it is based on its base code. It features faster blocking and transaction completion times, confidential transactions for privacy, and native support for custom tokens. In addition, a much more advanced scripting language is scheduled for release this year.

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Bertani said the creation of the library was motivated by the desire of pTokens to „contribute to the ecosystem beyond our own solution. But she also revealed that the team will use the library to bring coins from other chains to Liquid.

The project currently provides several ‚wrapped‘ tokens in both Ethereum (ETH) and EOS, allowing the DeFi Equilibrium project to support the BTC guarantee.

Woodfine said the company is open to support for other blockchains:

„There are already some wrapped tokens starting to appear on the net. We hope that the pTokens will work to accelerate this trend and introduce some interesting confidence-minimizing models for importing existing assets into the Liquid Network.

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He suggested that the main use case for these additional tokens would be for trading on exchanges, similar to how it works for BTC.

However, the potential of the library seems to go beyond simply transferring tokens. While Liquid is positioned as a settlement layer, many of its features support use cases similar to smart contract platforms. However, some criticise Liquid’s approach given the high degree of centralisation of the network.