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Facebook’s Blockchain Division Has a New Director of Engineering

Blockchain, a digital ledger in which transactions made in bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies are recorded, is the next big thing

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Facebook testing 'LOL' app to woo kids, experts wary. Pixabay

Facebook has promoted one of its senior engineers Evan Cheng as the Director of Engineering at its recently launched Blockchain division, signalling the importance of the project, the media reported.

Cheng is also listed as an advisor to blockchain startups and projects Zilliqa and ChainLink, the TechCrunch reported.

Earlier in May, Facebook had set up a group within the company to explore blockchain technology and its potential use for the platform, headed by long time Messenger chief David Marcus.

However, the latest executive reshuffle appears to point to the social networking giant getting more serious about developing on top of blockchain technology.

Besides Cheng, the tech giant has also promoted Kevin Weil, former vice president of product at Instagram, as the vice president of product at their Blockchain division, the report said.

Facebook mobile app
Facebook mobile app. Pixabay

“It means it’s not just an exploratory project”, is how one source who tracks the blockchain space speculatively, described Cheng’s move to Facebook’s blockchain team, the report said.

Recruiting Cheng to the blockchain group signals the importance of the project, the source said.

According to his LinkedIn page, Cheng has been employed at Facebook since November 2015 and has been working at their Programming Languages and Runtimes, a position he held for nearly three years.

He also worked at Apple for over 10 years and is credited as one of the inventors of LLVM — a compiler that generates the low-level machine code for Apple devices.

Also Read: Facebook Shuts Down Three of its Apps

Blockchain, a digital ledger in which transactions made in bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies are recorded, is the next big thing.

Although Facebook has not announced any plans about how they would use blockchain technology on their platform, it is clear they are pursuing this technology with interest. In the light of the data crises faced by Facebook, it is going to be interesting to see how they utilize this technology to improve their services, the CCN reported. (IANS)

Next Story

Facebook to Launch its Cryptocurrency Next Year: Report

According to Zuckerberg, Blockchain could give users more powers when granting data access to third-party apps

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Facebook, data,photos
A television photographer shoots the sign outside of Facebook headquarters in Menlo Park, Calif. VOA

Facebook, which owns WhatsApp and Instagram, is gearing up to launch its own cryptocurrency next year, the BBC reported on Friday.

Called “GlobalCoin,” the cryptocurrency would work with a new digital payments system in about a dozen countries starting in the first quarter of 2020.

Facebook has been in contact with US and British financial regulators to launch it.

According to the BBC, Facebook is in touch with “Bank of England governor Mark Carney and officials at the US Treasury”.

With over two billion users across its platforms, Facebook could emulate WeChat in China which allows its users to chat, shop and play games without leaving its platform.

The Facebook cryptocurrency would need to overcome numerous technical and regulatory hurdles before it can be launched.

According to media reports, the Facebook currency could be designed to be a “stablecoin” with a value pegged to US currency in an attempt to minimize volatility.

A report last week said Facebook has reportedly set up a company called Libra Networks in Switzerland that is developing payments and Blockchain systems for the social networking giant.

virtual currencies, bitcoin, investors
Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency and worldwide payment system. Wikimedia Commons

According to a report in CNET quoting Swiss publication Handelszeitung, the Facebook cyrptocurrency would be tied to the US dollar and could, therefore, remain stable unlike Bitcoin which has crashed.

“Facebook set up Libra Networks in Geneva several weeks ago. Libra is the social network’s internal project name for the digital currency,” the report said.

The Swiss company would focus on developing the software and hardware for currency-related functions like payments, Blockchain, analytics, big data and identity management.

Facebook declined to comment on the new report.

Also Read- Microsoft Interns Make English Learning App

According to a report in The Wall Street Journal earlier this month, the social media giant is “recruiting dozens of financial firms and online merchants” towards its cryptocurrency-based system that would use a digital coin similar to Bitcoin.

The New York Times reported in February that Facebook had a team of 50 people working on its virtual currency project.

In a public interview with Harvard Law professor Jonathan Zittrain in February, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said he is “potentially interested” in putting the Facebook login on the Blockchain technology.

According to Zuckerberg, Blockchain could give users more powers when granting data access to third-party apps. (IANS)