For developers plying their trade in today’s rapidly expanding, blockchain-agnostic environment, deciding on the right approach to smart contract execution is critical.
In this article, I’ll review EVM (Ethereum Virtual Machine) and SmartWeave credentials as two different options for developers to consider. Full disclosure, let’s take a deep dive! Before we start, here’s a comparison table to give you an idea of both runtimes:
Key considerations for using EVM
While Solidity has a unique structure and syntax that can be challenging for those considering Web3 development, it continues to attract a large influx of new students. In addition, EVM has a vast ecosystem of resources, tools, educational materials, and enthusiastic developers.
Even though EVM is widely considered the gold standard framework for building decentralized applications, it has strict limiting parameters, which newfound developers must learn to work within. A senior Solidity developer’s ability to optimize code for rigorous computational limits (in the form of gas limits) sets them apart from the type of developer fresh out of academia. The downside to this model is that it places a heavy emphasis on block space, which can become extremely expensive to install.
In addition, the requirement for consensus-driven computation synchronization in each block adds a layer of complexity to EVM design, acting as a major roadblock to scaling efforts, especially given the sequential evaluation of all smart contract interactions.
One noteworthy consideration involves the unique storage model within the Ethereum virtual machine. In most programming languages, understanding low-level data representation is not crucial, but Solidity deviates from this norm. Given the significant cost associated with accessing storage on Ethereum-based networks, it is essential to have a clear idea of how data types are represented. The shared global storage model across all contracts, regardless of their interaction, presents challenges.
The design introduces inefficiencies, forcing contracts to bypass redundant data, slowing down transaction times, and incurring unnecessary IT costs. These costs contribute to a higher financial burden for data storage on the platform, which affects developers and users. Additionally, the shared nature of storage could inadvertently amplify coding errors or vulnerabilities, leading to unintended consequences for unrelated contracts and potentially increased remediation costs.
Across the hall, SmartWeave is a paradigm for evaluating smart contract states on an immutable data layer like Arweave. SmartWeave’s distinctive value proposition has far-reaching potential to enhance the creation of highly efficient dApps for a host of specific use cases, serving as a complementary framework to fill the gap where EVM falls short. Because a data layer does not perform arbitrary calculations, it assigns the responsibility of evaluating the current state of the contract to the caller by “lazy evaluation.”
To “lazy” evaluate the current state of a contract, the caller checks and executes all contract interactions (Arweave transactions) from the start of the contract to the present, reproducing the current state of the contract from scratch.
In essence, Arweave smart contracts consist of an ordered set of actions (C, I, Ts), with ‘C’ being the part that contains the contract code, ‘I’ the fraction that contains the initial state, and ‘T’ a sequence of transactions that interact with the contract. When the client evaluates the state, it uses the code of C, the initial state of I, and applies each transaction thereafter (as long as it is valid) based on the contract code. I understand? Good! Here is a visual description of the architecture to help crystallize the concept:
SmartWeave is an architecture aimed at creating a reliable, fast, and production-ready smart recruiting engine in Arweave. Its most popular implementation, Warp Contracts, focuses on achieving exactly this goal. Warp is often described as “SmartWeave contracts on steroids” due to its ability to overcome some of the major hurdles associated with the default implementation of the SmartWeave protocol.
These obstacles include a lack of caching which leads to poor performance, the absence of a reliable SmartWeave transaction gateway, and the inability to ensure security and contract determinism. In addition to its core function, the Warp SDK includes a finely tuned caching layer that greatly improves the efficiency of lazy evaluation.
Distinguishing EVM from SmartWeave architecture
EVM’s security is intrinsically linked to the consensus technology of its underlying blockchain. In addition, SmartWeave also relies on the security and finality of the Arweave blockchain, which is achieved by including blocks terminated using the SPoRa (Succinct Proofs of Random Access) protocol.
By structure by design, EVM implements the rate market in the core protocol. The marketplace fee scheme uses a first-price auction mechanism to determine transaction fees, where the highest bidder processes your transaction first. The challenges associated with network scaling become particularly apparent during periods of high demand, as seen with the design of the global Ethereum virtual machine fee market.
For example, when an individual contract experiences considerable activity, such as a highly anticipated NFT minting, it inadvertently impacts all network users by increasing transaction costs, even for those not directly involved in the high-demand activity. .
Arweave proposes an alternative approach to the traditional fee market by using a single reward pool and Merkle root for all data, called the endowment. Adding new data to the system updates the Merkle tree and adds $AR tokens to the reward pool without causing an increase in computational overhead. To address the payment processing bottleneck for data storage, Arweave uses a recursive packet system to settle multiple transactions in a single payment over the network.
Eventually, this could lead to trees of infinite depth that allow all web data to be ingested in a single transaction, eliminating the need for fee marketplaces. Arweave’s transaction system allows users to execute transactions without a block inclusion fee, making storage costs the only expense to execute transactions, regardless of the demand side.
SmartWeave is a sequenced matrix of Arweave transactions that benefit from the absence of a fee market for the inclusion of transaction blocks. This unique property allows for unlimited transaction data with no additional fees beyond storage costs. Additionally, SmartWeave’s open design allows developers to write logic in any programming language, providing a refreshing alternative to Solidity’s often rigid codebase.
Part 2 is coming tomorrow, covering:
Deferred Execution: An Alternate PerspectiveAssessing the Suitability of EVM and SmartWeaveSmartWeave Market Fit
Guest Post by: Jakub Wojciechowski, CEO and Founder of Warp Contracts and RedStone
This post A Complete Guide for Authorized Developers (Part 1)
was published first on https://cryptoslate.com/evm-vs-smartweave-a-comprehensive-guide-for-consenting-developers-part-1/