Solana Foundation Launches Social Media Features Aimed at 'Putting Crypto Back in Crypto Twitter'



The non-profit Solana Foundation, in a bid to make blockchain transactions more seamless and intuitive and put the “crypto” back into “Crypto Twitter,” announced the launch of Solana Actions (transactions) and Solana Blinks (blockchain links) on Tuesday.

The new features will allow users to connect and send transactions without having to leave the website they are currently on. Using Actions and Blinks, the Solana Foundation claims any website that can display a URL can be used with the new features.

“Part of our role here at the Solana Foundation on the engineering side is to explore some of these product primitives and think one to three years down the line,” Solana Foundation head of engineering Jon Wong told Decrypt in an interview. “Blockchain has a key problem: It’s stuck in its corner of the internet. Everything that you’ve ever done online has to be crypto-aware, but that’s kind of an annoying process,” he said.

For example, he added, some discussion forums require participants to be using a particular crypto wallet.

The first time a wallet attempts to retrieve a transaction from an unknown API, Wong said, users will see a familiar “connect to site” prompt, noting if the site domain has been connected to the wallet in the past, then it’s more likely to be trustworthy.

As Wong explained, Actions and Blinks are similar to connecting a wallet to a decentralized app (dapp). “Trust the sites you know and use, just as you trust the dApps you know and use,” he said.

In addition to transactions on websites and social media, the Solana Foundation said, developers can also create physical QR codes. At launch, Wong added, Phantom, Backpack, and Dialect wallet extensions will only unfurl registered or “trusted” Actions URLs on Twitter.

“So the blockchain becomes this universal database for all these different actions,” Wong said. “It makes it really easy to execute these things on a bunch of different services, including Telegram and WhatsApp or Slack or whatever you want to build that can recognize these links.”

Solana Actions and Blinks are the latest in a long time of blockchain projects that aim to make cryptocurrency social. Other projects that enabled transactions of social media include Bitcoin Tips, and Mask Network.

Partners joining in the launch of Solana Actions and Blinks include Cubik, Sanctum, Tensor, Realms, Access, Jupiter, Helium, Truffle, Phantom, Backpack, and Solana-based alert app developer Dialect.

“Twitter is absolutely the first platform, and I think the one that feels the most sort of crypto native,” Wong said. “Dialect’s tagline for this is putting the crypto back into crypto Twitter.”

Dialect is a Solana smart messaging service that uses compressed NFTs to supports decentralized app notifications and wallet-to-wallet chats.

According to Wong, in future iterations of Solana Actions and Blinks, wallets may have a feature that allows them to “infer” trustworthiness based on whether or not the website has been used before.

“This is really Day Zero,” Wong said. “Obviously, the first [website] will be Twitter, but imagining what that looks like layered onto the rest of the internet, it’s really interesting.”

Edited by Stacy Elliott.



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