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Ethereum Foundation Grants Update - Wave IV

Posted by Ethereum Team on October 15, 2018

Ethereum Foundation Grants Update - Wave IV

Greetings from the Ethereum Foundation Grants Team!

As we go full steam ahead to Devcon 4, we're back to announce Wave 4 of the Grants Program! Thank you to all the fantastic community members that have applied with creative ideas on how to bolster our ecosystem. We would not exist without the time and energy that you put into Ethereum. While the program continues to grow, we will increasingly continue to involve more community members in the decision making process. The Grants Program today is vastly improved from just earlier this year, thanks to all the helpful feedback from the community, allowing us to provide better public tools and infrastructure.

If you haven't heard of us before, our last announcement went into some depth on program history, funding summary, and processes. Find that post here, and you can see guidelines and more here.

Without further ado...

πŸŽ‰ We are proud to announce our Wave 4 Grantees! πŸŽ‰


  • Non-Custodial Payment Channel Hub​​ -- $420K. Payment upon delivery for the open source SDK release built by Spankchain, Kyokan, and Connext at Devcon 4
  • Prototypal​​ -- $375K. Front-end state channel research and development.
  • Finality Labs​​ ​​-- $250K. Development of Forward-Time Locked Contracts (FTLC).
  • Kyokan​​ ​​-- $125K. Development of production ready mainnet Plasma Cash & Debit plugins.
  • Atomic Cross-Chain Transactions -- $65K. Research led by Maurice Herlihy of Brown University.
  • EthSnarks​​ ​​-- $40K. Development of a cross-compatible SDK for zkSNARKS to be viable on Ethereum.


  • Flintstones -- $120K. Further development of the Flint Language including a security focused IDE by Susan Eisenbach of Imperial College London.

Usability (DevEx)

  • TrueBlocks ​​-- $120K. Open source block explorer.
  • Gitcoin​​ -- $100K. Funding bounties on Gitcoin.
  • VulcanizeDB ​​-- $75K. "Community sourced" block explorer.
  • Buidler ​​-- $50K. Development of modular alternative to Truffle based on Ethers.js.
  • Ethdoc​​ -- $25K. Open source tool for organization and interaction of smart contract codebases.
  • Ethers.js​​ -- $25K. Support for ricmoo to continue development and maintenance of Ethers.js.
  • Kauri​​ -- $25K. Funding documentation bounties on Kauri.


  • Magic Money Tree (Dark Crystal) -- $50K. Tool for securely storing and recovering keys and secrets through a multisig design by the Secure Scuttlebutt Team.


Client Diversity

  • Sigma Prime​​ -- $150K. Lighthouse Eth 2.0 client in Rust.
  • Prysmatic Labs -- $500K. Eth 2.0 Prysm client.
  • Status ​​-- $500K. Eth 2.0 client in Nim.

Want to #BUIDL with us? Β See the dev wishlist below and follow links to learn more. If you can imagine a project relating to the topics listed, submit an application and talk to us!



  1. More payment and/or state channel implementations πŸ’šπŸ’™πŸ’œ
  2. More plasma implementations πŸ’šπŸ’™
  3. Improving efficiency of existing clients such as geth & parity πŸ’šπŸ’™
  4. A tokenless "Lightning Network" for Ethereum πŸ’™
  5. WebAssembly R&D πŸ”₯
  6. libp2p Python implementation πŸ”₯
  7. Plasma Cash implementations for fungible tokens utilizing defragmentation techniques found here and here πŸ”₯
  8. Academic analysis of Casper πŸ”₯


  1. STARKS R&D πŸ”₯
  2. BLS12-381 implementations in new languages πŸ”₯


  1. Improve private key management and transacting in Ethereum πŸ’šπŸ’™πŸ’›
  2. Alternative wallet / client designs πŸ’™πŸ’œ
  3. Standards and portability between wallets πŸ’™
  4. Tooling that improves developer experience πŸ’šπŸ’™πŸ’œπŸ’›
  5. Improved documentation & developer/user education videos πŸ’šπŸ’™πŸ’œπŸ’›
  6. Tokenless end user products πŸ’œ
  7. Vyper development πŸ’œ
  8. More security focused high-level languages πŸ’œ
  9. Non-transferable ID tokens πŸ”₯
  10. Establishing a spec and cross client test suite for the JSON-RPC API πŸ”₯
  11. Analysis of and analytics for real world Ethereum transactions (application usage, gas / opcode usage, missed avenues for optimization, etc) πŸ”₯
  12. Tooling that source-verifies contracts client-side, makes use of the metadata hash and shows NatSpec comments to the user for use in wallets πŸ”₯


  1. Security audits for Vyper πŸ’™πŸ’œ
  2. Smart contract audits πŸ’šπŸ’œ
  3. Particularly, audits for ERC20, ERC223, ERC721, multisig wallets, vaults πŸ’œ
  4. Tooling that prevents vulnerable code πŸ’šπŸ’™πŸ’œ
  5. IDE with a visual debugger πŸ”₯
  6. Privacy Solutions πŸ”₯
  7. More in-depth network monitoring tools πŸ”₯


  1. Community groups and conferences for underrepresented and underserved communities πŸ”₯
  2. Translation of research, documentation, and specs into other languages πŸ”₯


You already have a job (or school)? No problem! Suggest a problem you want to solve and we're happy to fund a 10-week $10K externship for your spare-time working on Ethereum. πŸ’šπŸ’™πŸ’œπŸ’›(Successful projects will be featured at a developer conference. We are also looking to hire and fund from this pool of side projects. If you're looking for where to start, look at the list above.)

πŸ’š -- Β Wave I / πŸ’™ -- Wave II / πŸ’œ -- Wave III / Β πŸ’›-- Wave IV / πŸ”₯ -- New to wishlist


For more inspiration...

Keep up to date with research here and here.

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