Ben Arc is a free open-source software advocate and founder of LNbits. In this interview, we discuss how LNbits helps to decentralize custodianship and how Bitcoin’s widescale utility outweighs the environmental FUD.
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In April of this year, Arcane Research published the 2nd volume of its “The State of Lightning” report. It showed adoption of the payments system is growing rapidly. Transaction and usage data indicate exceptional growth (e.g. since January 2021 capacity on the Lightning network has increased by 450%). However, they don’t provide the full picture: equally important is the flourishing ecosystem.
There are well over a hundred companies working directly with Lightning: developing operating systems, node and liquidity services, wallets, payment infrastructure, financial services, rewards programs, gaming, podcast/streaming and social media payment options etc. etc. The investment such companies are attracting is growing: the prize is access to the world’s best payment rail.
LNbits are providing the services of a Point of Sale payment and accounting technology. Its founder, Ben Arc, started hacking hardware to integrate Lightning functionality after attending the very first Lightning hack day in 2018. Since then he has taken a passion to contribute free open-source software for the community, into a VC-funded business seeking to bring scalable products to market.
LNbits already has a free open-source Lightning wallet/accounts system with an array of extensions enabling users to create paywalls, faucets, offline shops, and even a jukebox! But Ben continues to hack hardware: he has created a Lightning ATM that he provided a live demo of during the show. Those who attend Real Bedford should soon be able to see one of these!
Ben is looking to help grow the adoption of a technology that can provide freedom through decentralization. This will occur once we make these technically sophisticated innovations easy to use, and equally, easy to develop as open-source projects. Lightning is the innovation that enables Bitcoin to scale, and LNbits is part of the growing ecosystem we need to help Lightning to scale.