Cardano’s Alonzo hard fork has been completed, bringing Plutus-powered smart contract scripts to the network.
Cardano has announced that the Alonzo hard fork has been completed, bringing with it the long-awaited smart contract capabilities.
IOHK announced on Monday that the upgrade had been completed successfully at epoch 290, allowing for the first time the development and execution of smart contracts on the public blockchain.
Despite the achievement, Cardano emphasizes that the project is still in its “early days,” claiming that now is when “the mission truly begins” in a blog post published the same day:
“This is where the mission truly begins as we – the whole community – start delivering on the vision we have all been working towards for so long. Building a decentralized system that extends economic identity and opportunity to everyone, everywhere.”
Plutus scripts, which the developers describes as “a purpose-built smart contract development language and execution platform utilizing the functional programming language Haskell,” may be used to write smart contracts for Cardano using the Alonzo branch.
The team, on the other hand, has urged its fans to keep realistic expectations for Alonzo, saying:
“There are high expectations resting on this upgrade. Some unreasonably so. Cardano watchers may be expecting a sophisticated ecosystem of consumer-ready DApps available immediately after the upgrade. Expectations need to be managed here.”
Cardano is a public blockchain created by Charles Hoskinson, co-founder of Ethereum, and his research business, IOHK.
While Cardano promised to challenge Ethereum’s supremacy in hosting decentralized finance (DeFi) and Web 3.0 apps, after starting in September 2017, the project has been chastised for failing to implement smart contract capabilities till now.
“It shocks me that this chain has been in the market for two years, and is only now adding support for smart contracts, and people are satisfied with this progress,” Dominic Williams, founder of competitor platform Internet Computer, said of Cardano’s delay in launching smart contracts.
Cardano was also chastised in early September after the first decentralized application (DApp) to launch on its testnet ran into problems with concurrent transaction processing failures.
“Seriously 6 years of ‘peer-reviewed’ research and a $90bil+ market value later, the first dapp on Cardano can’t even execute concurrent transaction processing (aka the very thing you need for DeFi),” tweeted outspoken Ethereum maximalist Anthony Sassano.
The first dapp went live on Cardano today and ADA fanboys are finally discovering that you can't peer review your way out of fundamental issues. pic.twitter.com/tYQXNcVKGN— Anthony Wassano 🦇🔊 (@sassal0x) September 4, 2021
Cardano has responded to the criticism by claiming that DApps created on the protocol aren’t “restricted to one transaction per block.”
Despite its opponents, the excitement surrounding Candano’s enhancements has pushed its native token, ADA, to new highs, with ADA rising 192 percent from a low of $1.06 in late July to $3.10 on Sept. 3, according to CoinGecko. Since the beginning of 2021, ADA has increased by over 1,600%.
However, ADA has subsequently dropped and has spent the last week fluctuating between $2.30 and $2.80, implying that many speculators bought the rumor and dumped the news.