While everyone and their mother is focused on the disclosure about the fraud and incompetence that went on at Prime Trust, a third party custodian that many companies were using to handle bitcoin and USD custody on behalf of their users, I thought it'd be more productive to highlight something going on in the world of bitcoin development; the Payjoin Development Kit (PDK). Bitcoin developer Dan Gould released PDK earlier this afternoon and it is here to make it as easy as possible to integrate Payjoin into as many bitcoin services as possible.
For those of you who are unaware of what Payjoin is, it is a particular type of transaction that makes it very hard to track people across the bitcoin ledger as they transact. To be more specific, it is a unique CoinJoin implementation that requires the sender and the receiver engaged in a transaction to provide an input for said transaction that, when combined, do not create equal outputs and break the common-input ownership heuristic used by chain surveillance companies to track people as they spend and receive bitcoin. This is a great way to increase the level of privacy bitcoiners have when they transact and hopefully with PDK it makes this type of interaction much easier or even native when spending and receiving bitcoin.
Historically, Payjoin (also known as Pay-to-endpoint) hasn't been seen as an optimal solution because the implementations have required the person receiving bitcoin to have an always-on hot wallet that is pretty well funded. However, it seems that Dan believes there is a way to solve the "always-on problem" via Serverless Payjoins which allow those receiving to use TURN relays to coordinate PSBTs with senders to complete the Payjoin transaction. If successful, this would be a massive boon to Payjoin UX that could potentially increase its adoption, which has been disappointing to date.
A massive shout out to Dan and others who have been working on PDK for pushing this ball forward. It is important to recognize that bitcoin's privacy assurances are sub-par today for the average user who is unaware of the common "gotchas" that exists while sending and receiving bitcoin. The hope is that with projects like PDK becoming more robust those building wallet software have a better way to build native privacy tools into their UX flows that make it nearly impossible for an end user to mess up their privacy. If the bitcoin wallet software landscape gets to a point where it is virtually impossible for chain surveillence companies and despotic governments to track people as they transact then bitcoin will become an even more powerful tool for freedom in the digital age.
I look forward to seeing the growth of the PDK project. Hopefully it gets to a point where it is so easy to use that it is embedded in every bitcoin wallet on the market and an end user doesn't even realize it.
It was a struggle getting to 10,000 steps today in this God foresaken heat, but I did it.