What is the Lightning Network (LN)?
The LN is software that uses the bitcoin network to create payment rails in the form of what are called HTLCs.
It is basically a second layer built on top of bitcoin. The advantages you get are numerous, but they are not without tradeoffs.
Lightning is bleeding edge tech! If you want to make a statement and help blaze the trail for others, doing work on Lightning is a good way to do it. Here are some additional LN resources.
How to Run Lightning
Lightning is an open spec which means anyone can create an implementation of it in any language they wish, and it has the ability to interoperate with other lightning implementations.
The lightning network requires interaction with a bitcoin node. If you don’t know what that is, start here.
Here is a page dedicated to standalone Lightning Wallets
Learn LN in-depth
Mastering Lightning is a free book, written in collaboration by three experts on the subject
LN Implementations in Development:
C-lightning by Blockstream written in C
LND by Lightning Labs written in Go
Eclair by ACINQ written in Scala
Electrum implementation in Python for the Electrum Bitcoin wallet
Rust-LN part of Rust Bitcoin library