ParaState plans to bring Ethereum smart contracts to Polkadot.
ParaState is an upcoming multi-chain smart contract platform that is designed to bring the capabilities of Ethereum smart contracts to the Polkadot ecosystem.
Billed as “Ethereum on steroids,” ParaState aims to make building and deploying smart contracts across the Polkadot ecosystem a more accessible, cost-efficient and intuitive task.
STATE is the platform's native utility and governance token. It is primarily used for determining the direction of ParaState's development through on-chain voting as well as rewarding network participants through a variety of mechanisms.
ParaState is being built by an international team of heavily experienced builders, engineers, entrepreneurs and business developers. Leading the development of the platform is ParaState co-founder Marco Chen — a prominent member of the open-source community and a silver member of the Rust Foundation.
How Does ParaState Work?
ParaState looks to address all of the shortcomings of Ethereum with a WebAssembly (WASM)-based virtual machine — similar to the one used for current generation smart contract platforms like Cosmos, Oasis and NEAR.
But ParaState’s VM has a key distinguishing feature — it’s compatible with Ethereum code. This unique property allows projects that have already deployed on Ethereum to easily migrate to the Polkadot ecosystem with few to no changes to their code needed.
The platform offers a high-performance on-chain runtime module for Ethereum-compatible smart contracts. In other words, developers who would otherwise be building their products and services for Ethereum can instead opt to deploy their products in the Polkadot landscape. On the flip side, developers can easily use ParaState's solution to migrate their non-Ethereum projects to the EVM without sacrificing speed or security.
In one fell swoop, ParaState looks to not only make smart contracts far more efficient and developer friendly, but also dramatically improve their security and flexibility.
Some of the benefits that come with using ParaState's SSVM-EWASM pallet, called WasmEdge, also include:
- Dramatically reduced operating costs and gas fees;
- Access to a larger development community (Ethereum + Polkadot + WASM + various LLVM communities);
- Improved efficiency across various computer architectures since the SSVM can use AOT (ahead-of-time) compilation.
Since the platform uses a licensing model for its runtime software, some of the fees that support parachains operations through the ParaState VM are collected for the ParaState DAO.
ParaState allows anybody to easily participate in its network by operating a node — which entails running the ParaState client on an Ubuntu computer that meets basic minimum specs (such as a fairly decent CPU and at least 500GB of high speed storage). Right now, the platform is running on its testnet, but nodes will have the opportunity to join the mainnet as validators at a later date.
ParaState has been in development since 2019 and is now inching closer to its public release. According to its official public roadmap, ParaState plans to deliver its EWASM Polkadot parachain pallet in Q3 or Q4 2022 — allowing all Polkadot parachains to easily run Ethereum code.
ParaState recently completed its public offering on Republic and is now gearing up for its token distribution event. The exact date for this has not yet been revealed.
Although ParaState primarily intends to deploy as a parachain on Polkadot, its feature-set and capabilities also make it suitable to launch as an independent layer-1 chain, or layer-2 on Ethereum after ETH2.0 code merge. ParaState's Plato testnet is currently scheduled to switch to its mainnet in the second half of 2022 — providing another valuable network to ParaState's tech stacks.
What Makes ParaState Unique?
ParaState is looking to position itself as the answer to some of the main challenges facing developers today. To help it accomplish this, ParaState will lean on several of its unique and distinguishing features, including:
Support for multiple languages
Unlike regular Ethereum smart contracts — almost all of which are written in Solidity or Fe — ParaState allows developers to create smart contracts in more than 20 different programming languages, including C++, Rust, Go and Java, as well as popular domain-specific languages like Facebook's MOVE and Certik's DeepSEA. And ParaState already launches a Rust SDK to enable developers to use Rust to write DApps on top of ParaState technical stacks. It’s the first Rust SDK among the Ethereum compatible networks.
By offloading much of the heavy lifting that comes with executing computations to Polkadot's network of validators, ParaState and other Polkadot parachains will be able to support more than 1,000 transactions per second. This is roughly 100x the throughput of Ethereum.
According to the ParaState litepaper, the platform's unique runtime architecture allows it to improve code execution speed by a factor of 100x compared to the Ethereum Virtual Machine.
ParaState's SSVM-Ewasm solution is available as a plug-and-play module that allows any Substrate ecosystem project to easily introduce support for Ethereum-based smart contracts. This will allow applications that are already up-and-running on Ethereum to also deploy on any supported Polkadot parachain while providing new projects with a streamlined entry route to the entire Polkadot ecosystem.
As we previously touched on, one of the primary utilities of the STATE token is governance. Holders of the STATE token will be able to have their say on how the ParaState DAO treasury is used; which upgrades or development paths to pursue; incentives for the community, developers, and advocates; and more.
In time, the DAO may even decide to deploy ParaState as an independent layer-1 chain or layer-2 solution, rather than only supporting a Polkadot parachain.