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The Weekend Read: Dec 4

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Happy Corda Day!

First things first.

Besides the cake, we were also gratified to see so much interest on release day. We had our first pull request merged within a few hours of release, thousands of unique visits and over 40 forks of our Github repo. For more coverage, see Euromoney, American Banker, WSJ and Fortune articles. From the Fortune piece:

“Our intention is to encourage other people in the community to contribute to it, to build on top of it, to drive its design and adoption,” said Richard Brown, R3’s chief technology officer. “We want a large number of people people downloading and using it,” he said.
“People will be surprised when they dig into the code of the technical white paper,” [Mike] Hearn told Fortune on a call. For one thing, he said, Corda is designed to be compatible with tools that programmers within large organizations are likely already familiar, such as relational databases for storing digital information and Microsoft SQL, a tool for accessing data contained therein.

We also heard from the wider internets on their views of Corda. The feedback and constructive challenging of the Corda design and implementation decisions is exactly what our team is looking for from the wider community. And of course we also got other, less constructive feedback, which I can break down into two broad categories: 1. suggestions for us to kindly lodge certain appendages and objects into various openings big and small, or 2. the equally helpful jokes about SQL databases (this is perhaps the most tired of all the "burns" we hear, and as someone who grew up with the last name McDonald, I know a tired burn when I hear one...).

We know there is a lot to wade thru in exploring Corda (56 pages for the white paper Mike? Dang). As a starter, check out Richard's intro blog posts and Mike's review on what lies ahead, all on our Corda blog. Even better for the TL;DR crowd, Richard has a new Corda explainer video here that wraps up in a tidy 3 minutes. Enjoy!

R3 Application Partners

There was another bit of news this week that perhaps got swept up with the Corda release. On Tuesday, we announced our partnership with Calypso Technologies to jointly develop the first post trade application on our smart contract network (a CorDapp in R3 lingo):

Calypso will be the first application partner to leverage the R3 platform, which will allow financial institutions and their technology partners to work more closely together in a safe and efficient distributed ecosystem. The platform records and manages financial agreements between counterparties, leveraging distributed ledger technology to guarantee a consistent, accurate, auditable, reportable record.
Pascal Xatart, CEO at Calypso said: "We are thrilled to be working with R3 and honored to be their first application partner. The alignment between the two firms is exceptional – our deep expertise in capital markets combined with their industry-leading distributed ledger technology will allow us to develop a range of innovative applications quickly and efficiently. Our current matching solution is only the beginning."

We have been hard at work over the past year building out the framework of our financial-grade network. This past week we have debuted two core pieces of that framework. One is obviously our distributed ledger platform, Corda. The other is captured in the above partnership announcement: our clear intention to build and support an ecosystem of partners to help drive value for all the participants in the emerging R3 network. Our friends at Calypso are a fantastic example of such a partner, one that brings deep domain expertise, understanding of their client's needs and shares the strategic view that the next generation of financial software and services will be driven via smart contract platforms. We could not be happier to have them as our first partner.

More Shout Outs

Congrats to the CME team on their collaboration with The Royal Mint on their tokenized gold trading platform dubbed Royal Mint Gold (RMG):

Vin Wijeratne, CFO of The Royal Mint said the addition of a blockchain-type system will mean tracking ownership in near real time and therefore some costly administration attached to this process can be dispensed with...Sandra Ro, digitisation lead at CME Group, said: "This is going to be a permissioned network. We will have all known actors and there will be a mechanism by which validators will validate the transactions...This is very much a digital gold offering as an investment product. And it happens to be that it is using a blockchain ledger to record transactions. This is a trading platform."

Another congrats to the Hyperledger team, which announced surpassing 100 participants in the open source effort this week. I will be at the annual Member Summit in Bklyn on Wednesday and Thursday and look forward to catching up with everyone in person. For those who can't make it, I would suggest the excellent webinar from Digital Asset's Dan O'Prey here. But if you do make it, I promise you a freshly printed business card with our cool new logo...

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