• 5 min read

Crossing the Chasm to an Open Source Hedera Mainnet

Published By
Don Thibeau
February 8, 2022

Hedera’s mission is building a trusted, secure, and empowered digital future for all. This mission can only be achieved through an open and accessible platform where any user, developer, investors, or builder can participate.

Hedera’s purchase of the IP rights to the hashgraph consensus algorithm from Swirlds, Inc continues this mission by open sourcing the full stack of Hedera software.

From Open Review to Open Source

Hashgraph was initially licensed as Open Review, meaning that it was open for anyone to review, compile and run but still protected by the original patent.

Open review maximized stability and helped to ensure the network didn’t fork near its inception. This enabled the network to be launched and improved since its inception without major risk. This, however, was not aligned to the initial mission of Hedera.

An open source network allows users to inspect, modify, copy, and use its code in almost any way they choose. By opening up the codebase, skilled developers can improve the software. This, in turn, inspires collaboration, innovation, and promotes transparency.

The open sourcing of hashgraph will increase user and developer adoption in DeFi, NFTs, CBDCs, ESG, gaming, and more. Ultimately we expect this to increase open innovation in the Hedera ecosystem.

Why Now?

There has been a tension between Swirld’s patent on hashgraph and the critical theme of openness in the crypto ecosystem. The HBAR Foundation has been aligned to the importance of open source code as the bedrock of the Hedera ecosystem since its inception.

The Hedera Governing Council saw an opportunity with the network nearing V1.0 to further align itself to that vision through open sourcing of hashgraph.

Open sourcing will enable the Hedera ecosystem to begin attracting a larger community of decentralized application (dApp) developers who require openness of the networks on which they build. Attracting this community is critical for Hedera to move from a small group of early supporters including large organizations on the Hedera Governing Council to be a much broader group of builders.

The Next Phase of Growth

The open sourcing of hashgraph will enable an influx of builders to now enter the Hedera ecosystem. We hope these builders will be crypto-native, open source aligned, and mission motivated to bring cryptocurrency to the masses.

The network’s recent upgrade to Smart Contracts v2 will also enable Solidity dApp developers who have been struggling with performance, uptime, and cost issues on other cryptocurrency networks to now deploy to Hedera. This will result in more tokens issued, DeFi markets forming, and growth in liquidity on Hedera.

The HBAR Foundation is a resource available to any of these builders.

We provide the technical, marketing, and financial support which can help to get projects off the ground or scaling into production. Reach out to us if you have a project you would like to start the discussion on how we can help: hbarfoundation.org

The HBAR Foundation is committed to building momentum on the open sourcing of hashgraph to drive a more open, accessible, innovative ecosystem on Hedera.

About the HBAR Foundation

Founded in 2021, the HBAR Foundation fuels the development of the Hedera ecosystem by providing grants and other resources to developers, startups and organizations that seek to launch decentralized applications in DeFi, NFTs, CBDCs, sustainability, gaming and other sectors. In addition to providing funding through a streamlined grant process, the HBAR Foundation acts as an integrated force multiplier through expert support across technical, marketing, business development and other operational functions that are required to scale. 

To apply for a grant from the Foundation, please visit https://www.hbarfoundation.org/apply or follow the Foundation on twitter @HBAR_foundation.