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The scheduled monero hard fork on Wednesday October 18th offers great potential for this promising privacy coin.

As Monero stated in their press release, the bullet update provides reduced transaction sizes, sets the ringsize globally to 11 for uniformity of transactions, updated the PoW algorithm to CNv2, and finally sets the max transaction size at half of the penalty free block size.

In Monero all transactions are private, i.e. the sender, recipient and amount are disguised. Ring Confidential Transacations (or RingCT for short) hide the amount of a transaction. However, to ensure that a positive amount is actually spent, Monero uses a form of Zero Knowledge Proofs, namely Range Proofs. These prove, without revealing the actual transaction amount, that the inputs match the outputs.

Unfortunately zero knowledge range proofs have taken up a lot of storage space. A normal Range Proof Monero transaction is about 13 kilobytes in size – about 53 times larger than a normal Bitcoin transaction. With bulletproofs, the same transaction shrinks by 80 percent from 13 kilobytes to about 2.3 kilobytes. Monero transactions are therefore still significantly larger than Bitcoin transactions, but only by a factor of ten (instead of 53). For monero users, this means lower transaction fees and better scaling of the block chain. The transaction costs with a low priority are expected to drop from 20 to 30 cents to a few cents per input due to Beryllium Bullet.

You can read more at this excellent article on the Monero Beryllium Bullet Hard Fork by DecentralizedPost.com’s Matt Gomez.

Charlie Lee of Litecoin ($LTC) was really talking up Monero this week.  He said what what sets Monero apart from other privacy coins is its mandatory privacy and fungibility.  Other privacy coins merely make privacy optional.  It is nearly impossible to attach monero to any person or wallet so there can only be one class of Monero.  Thus, Monero can not be attached to an undesirable person or wallet and I think that has more marketing benefit than most people realize.

A recent article by Peter Kwang, highlights some of Monero’s greatest features.

Also there is a great new block explorer for Monero by the great people over at MyCrypto called Monero Vision

MoneroVision

MoneroVision is an open-source Monero block explorer that is offered as a part of the MyCrypto network.