Simon Ordish: Building WhatsOnChain to fit Bitcoin SV’s needs

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While many cool applications have helped broaden the appeal of Bitcoin SV (BSV), one of the earliest applications has been vital to developers, enthusiasts and power users alike. WhatsOnChain has been a vital resource to the BSV community, and to help discuss its impact, co-founder Simon Ordish joined our Becky Liggero at the CoinGeek Toronto 2019 scaling conference.

Ordish and his team started WhatsOnChain because they saw an opportunity to fill a much needed gap. “Well we wanted to get a block explorer out there when the fork happened, because there wasn’t one out there, and we couldn’t find one, so we decided to write one ourselves,” he said. “It was just meant to be a little bit of a hobby, but it’s turned into a bit more than that.”

Since OP_RETURN was unleashed earlier this year, WhatsOnChain has also been an important data explorer. That too came from noticing a lack of infrastructure from existing explorers. “A normal blockchain explorer will show you all the transactions on chain,” Ordish explained. “But as we’re seeing data go on there, we need tools that are going to allow us to decode that data, and developers need ways of doing that as well. So we found ourselves writing an explorer, and now we’re creating all the services as APIs for external people to use as well.”

It’s a decision that just made a lot of sense, Ordish explained to Liggero. “If you’re going to have data on there, and nobody can see it, or you have to be a real technical to see it, it’s not very accessible,” he said.

Liggero ended the interview by asking Ordish what he thought of CoinGeek’s developer day. “Well, you know, we want to see developers embracing what we’re doing, and believing what we’re doing,” he responded. “They need to understand how it’s going to scale. It’s actually really happening, and the technology is being written to handle the scale. And the developers see it, they’ll start using it, it’s a rolling, a snowball effect.”

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