Nebulas CTO Robin Zhong praises LLVM as a blockchain solution

April 19, 2018

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In a keynote speech at the 2018 European LLVM Developers’ Meeting, Nebulas co-founder and CTO Robin Zhong sounded a ringing endorsement for implementing LLVM within blockchains. Robin described the Nebulas integration of LLVM, and discussed the benefits LLVM presents by increasing code security, network performance, software compatibility, and lowering the barriers to entry for developers to the blockchain world.

BRISTOL, United Kingdom, April 20, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — Nebulas co-founder and CTO Robin Zhong gave the closing keynote address at this week’s 2018 European LLVM Developers’ Meeting, addressing hundreds of technology leaders about the future of blockchain, the Nebulas vision for decentralized applications, and the function that LLVM has in enabling this future.

  • The importance of LLVM to major technology projects

LLVM is a compiler framework that converts “text into software” — translating code from the high-level programming languages understood and written by humans into the low-level code processed and executed by machines. This compiler has been fundamental to some of society’s most impactful and popular programs, including those built by Apple, Google and Facebook and many more leading technology companies.

Nebulas is one of the first blockchain projects to implement LLVM. The compiler is used in the Nebulas Virtual Machine (NVM) to power smart contacts on the Nebulas blockchain. And while LLVM isn’t widely adopted in the blockchain industry yet, Robin believes the compiler framework is poised to transform the space, saying “LLVM is to blockchain technology what 4G is to mobile technology.”

  • Nebulas participates in the LLVM Developers’ Meeting

The 2018 European LLVM Developers’ Meeting is an industry gathering for developers to present and exchange ideas about LLVM and its applications. Some of the organizations sponsoring the event included Apple, Qualcomm, Google, Mozilla, Nebulas, Intel, Sony Interactive Entertainment, Facebook and Huawei.

Robin delivered the conference’s closing keynote speech addressed to hundreds of technology leaders and experts, and sharing his view on the Nebulas vision, the future of blockchains and decentralized apps (DApps), and LLVM’s function in enabling this future. This was the only talk at the LLVM Meeting with a topic dedicated to blockchain technology, and it garnered significant interest from conference attendees.

In his talk, Robin explained how LLVM increases the security and performance of blockchains, discussing the benefits that LLVM brings by supporting mainstream programming languages and enabling decentralized apps (DApps) to run in various execution environments.

  • The LLVM implementation in the Nebulas blockchain

Nebulas uses LLVM for smart contract executions in the Nebulas Virtual Machine (NVM). At the moment, NVM supports smart contracts written in Javascript, the most popular programming language based on Github activity, and Nebulas plans to extend support to other languages such as Solidity, Python, C/C++, and more. LLVM, which customizable for a range of high-level languages, is fundamental to Nebulas’ future work in this area.

By facilitating the use of mainstream programming languages within blockchain, LLVM can enhance code security and catalyze blockchain developer activity. Higher-level languages are easier to verify and audit, increasing a blockchain’s robustness and code security. Furthermore, by enabling smart contracts in mainstream languages like Javascript, LLVM and Nebulas are paving the way for a wide swathe of developers to contribute to blockchain.

As an open source, public blockchain platform, Nebulas is excited by opportunity enabled by LLVM to bring more developers to the blockchain world. And, as an LLVM Foundation sponsor, Nebulas hopes to encourage more developers towards LLVM, which is also open source. By working together, developers, Nebulas and LLVM can build a decentralized world with equal opportunity for all to derive value.


About Nebulas

Nebulas is a next-generation blockchain development, deployment, and discovery platform. The ecosystem consists of three central elements: 1) Nebulas Rank (NR), which measures and ranks the utility of all blockchain entities and powers the Nebulas search framework; 2) Native Incentive (NI), which rewards the developers and users bolstering the Nebulas blockchain; and 3) Nebulas Force, which proposes a novel community-led governance model and upgradability features for blockchain.

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