BitcoinTechnology

Blockstream Engineer Riccardo Casatta Receives Grant from Square

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Announced on October 23rd, Riccardo Casatta has received a grant of an undisclosed amount by Square Crypto. Square Crypto is the Bitcoin-focused development branch of $80 billion financial technology company Square. 

Casatta is a Blockstream engineer currently on sabbatical as he intends to work on the Bitcoin Development Kit with Steve Myers.

The Bitcoin Development Kit is a collection of tools and libraries that developers can utilize as a base for Bitcoin software, namely wallets. Casatta further stated his plans to continue working on his personal project Firma, through which users can turn old phones and computers into air-gapped Bitcoin hardware wallets.

Prior to joining Blockstream, Casatta founded Eternity Wall, a Bitcoin-based messaging service, and worked as an engineer and researcher at a number of banks and financial companies in Europe.

It is unclear how long Casatta's sabbatical from Blockstream is.

This is Square's latest move to support Bitcoin. The company earlier this month announced that it is deploying one percent of its corporate treasury to purchase bitcoin. As the BTC Times reported, Square's executives argued that Bitcoin has the potential to be a ubiquitous currency in the future and noted that it acts as a hedge amid macroeconomic turmoil.

Square Crypto is also in the midst of developing its own product: the Lightning Development Kit. The LDK, seemingly inspired by the aforementioned Bitcoin Development Kit, is a kit of tools that attempts to provide developers with an easier method of integrating Lightning into their applications. 

The company's grant to Casatta is the latest in a series of many. Along with funding seven other developers and five Bitcoin designers, Square also helps fund BTCPay, Lightning Signer, The Eye of Satoshi, and CoiNSwap from Chris Belcher. Developers, designers, and companies working to help Bitcoin adoption can apply for a grant through Square Crypto's site

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Nick is a writer and analyst who has been following Bitcoin since 2013. When he is not writing, he works on HTC's Bitcoin phone, EXODUS.