BitPay just announced major improvements to Bitcore, the new API for developing Bitcoin projects in JavaScript. The changes boil down to a cleaner and easier-to-use library for developers.

Although Bitcore 0.8 is composed of several changes, BitPay highlighted three new features in the announcement. They tested the API, so 100% of bitcoind's test vectors are now “ported and passing.” They replaced the TransactionBuilder class with the Transaction class, which makes transaction handling easier. They also unveiled in-browser support for the Payment Protocol, which facilitates communication and payment between merchant and consumer, and wards off insidious man-in-the-middle attacks.

The full list of tweaks can be viewed in the 0.8 changelog.

So what can developers do with the API? The API allows them to build JavaScript applications to handle transactions, secure payments, and develop programs over the network more easily. In fact, BitPay uses the API itself, and also uses it for Copay, the merchant processor's multi-signature wallet.

The base code, which was originally open-sourced back in February 2014, was originally based off a fork of Stefan Thomas' bitcoinjs-lib. Another milestone for the API came in April, when it reached 100% compatibility with Bitcoin Core test data.

Ryan X. Charles, Reddit's new cryptocurrency engineer, made major contributions to the open-source tool. They soon drew from Fedor Indutney's elliptic library. “This led to some dramatic improvements in Bitcore’s architecture, so we started modeling its interface around some of these base constructs,” BitPay’s blog post reads. Contributors also include Fedor Indutny, Manuel Araoaz, Braydon Fuller, Esteban Ordano, Yemel Jardi, Christopher Jeffrey, and Mariano Rodriguez.

Bitcore 0.8 Infographics

Future plans

The Georgia-based merchant processor is hardly a stranger to open-source projects. The list includes its multi-signature wallet Copay, and the blockchain explorer Insight

And there's more to expect in the future. BitPay also disclosed ambitious plans for future editions of the API. Bitcore 0.9 will include 100% test coverage, full node support, and payment channels. Bitcore 1.0 will support “bloom filters, stealth addresses, optimizations of performance critical code, and long-term support for a stable API.”

But for now, BitPay has cleaned up the API and made it easier for developers of all stripes to navigate. The blog post reads:

“With a focus on design and code quality, security, documentation, and usability, the 0.8 release sets a new course for Bitcore. We hope it will be a positive influence on the development of cryptocurrency-related software in JavaScript.”

Did you enjoy this article? You may also be interested in reading these ones: