Polkadot, a leading player in the blockchain ecosystem, has unveiled plans to scale its operations dramatically. The announcement came at the sub0 developer conference in Lisbon, where Sophia Gold, Engineering Lead at Parity Technologies, introduced “Asynchronous Backing.” This feature aims to triple the number of Polkadot validators to around 1,000 by the end of 2024. Consequently, the development is poised to be a pivotal moment in the evolution of parachain consensus since its launch two years ago.
Asynchronous Backing is a transformative scaling solution. It will enable flexible scheduling for future scaling work through mechanisms known as “elastic scaling” and “instantaneous core time.”
Moreover, the feature is set to be deployed on Polkadot’s Rococo testnet in approximately two weeks. This aligns with Polkadot’s ambitious roadmap to support 1,000 parachains and facilitate over a million transactions per second. Additionally, the feature is integrated at the protocol level, ensuring both capital efficiency and resistance to censorship.
More innovations in Polkadot’s architecture
Robert Habermeier, co-founder of Polkadot, elaborated on new architectural elements during the conference. These elements, termed “agile core time” and “elastic scaling,” aim to optimize Polkadot’s blockspace and computational resources.
Habermeier presented a proposal for a process that would enable a broader range of activities than just parachains. This includes the capability to deploy smart contracts directly to a Polkadot core. Hence, these innovations are designed to cater to developers at various stages and expand the network beyond the existing parachain model.
The conference also featured updates from OpenZeppelin regarding the OpenBrush contract library. This library is crafted to simplify the development of Polkadot’s native ink! smart contracts. OpenZeppelin’s team is working on open-source parachain runtimes and underlying FRAME pallets. These efforts aim to accelerate the creation and deployment of secure new parachains.
Furthermore, Zondax, a prominent software developer for the Ledger hardware wallet, is in the process of developing a Ledger app for Polkadot. This app will rely on verifiable metadata and support any parachain in the Polkadot ecosystem, thereby enhancing the cold wallet user experience.
Polkadot’s announcements at the sub0 conference underscore its commitment to scalability and innovation. With plans to significantly increase the number of validators and support a vast array of parachains, Polkadot is preparing for a future that promises both scalability and versatility.