Olaoluwa Osuntokun

Olaoluwa Osuntokun | Nigerian Micro Payments Through Lightning Labs

Olaoluwa Osuntokun – Lead Developer at Lightning Labs

Olaoluwa Osuntokun is the Nigerian lead developer behind the Lightning Labs project. One of the first creations of Lightning Labs is a Bitcoin-powered video streaming platform. A platform that allows customers anywhere in the world to easily pay for their video content rather than suffering free ads-infested options.

The talented young programmer, holds a bachelors degree in Computer Science from the University of California, Santa Barbara, and a Masters in Computer Science from the same university.

Taking the road less traveled, Olaoluwa Osuntokun, in 2016 founded Lightning Labs, a project set up to build products that would run on the Bitcoin protocol. This is in direct contrast with the usual path of other programmers who build products aimed at solving the almost unlimited problems ailing the Bitcoin protocol.

What Lightning Labs Can Do

Lightning Labs first creation is a video streaming product that will disrupt the traditional digital advertising system we have today. In a bid to achieve this, efforts are also being made to update the Bitcoin protocol. Notably, one example is the activation of Segregated Witness (SegWit), which heralded the launch of DApps that can process high volume transactions.

Unreasonably high Bitcoin transaction fees has made micro payments needed for content subscription unfeasible, thereby bringing to the fore the need for implementation of Lightning Labs. Even before this happened, some developers were already using the open source code to build other products, usually geared towards digital media and advertisement that allow crypto micro payments.

Products built using Lightning Network will be able to require zero login or sign up. Also, since all forms of media will be accepted, payment for media will act as an effective spam blocker. Using YouTube as an analogy, what this means in essence is that, to access YouTube, you will not need to login or sign up. All you have to do is pay for the content you wish to access. This means you can avoid those nasty ads. While this is not happening yet, it’s in the roadmap.

How It Works

To allow for micro payments for things like digital media content, Olaoluwa Osuntokun came up with something he called HTLC-DASH. This came about via implementation of Lightning (LND) on the Lightning Labs software. HTLC-DASH micro payments are then added to the media sending technique.

Payments for content are mandatory and automatic via “hashed timelock contracts,” a basic component of the Lightning Network software. This invariably means the more data consumed, the more payments made. Of course, a distributed system is needed to store content. Options like BitTorrent, IPFS and Blockstack are being considered.

In his several public presentations on Lightning Labs, Olaoluwa Osuntokun has pointed out that developers using Lightning Network would prefer it to the Bitcoin protocol as issues such as unconfirmed or chained transactions would be nonexistent. This could make micro payments integration with projects effortless. Best part of his claims is that Lightning Network, when implemented, will unlock amazing new use cases for Bitcoin.

Since going live about a month ago, although still in beta, Lightning Network has demonstrated a significant improvement of situation. At the moment, there are over 1000 Lightning Nodes.

Sometimes, it’s not about how far, but how well. Bitcoin is actually in danger of losing its king of Crypto position if issues like scalability and high transaction fees are not addressed. That’s where Lightning Labs founded by Olaoluwa Osuntokun comes to the rescue.