Explaining EVM Equivalence: Promoting the Development of L2 Open Source Ecosystem

Table of Contents and Abstracts

Understanding EVM Equivalence

There is a difference between scaling on Ethereum and scaling Ethereum itself.

EVM is an emerging structure formed by contributions from thousands of developers.

  • And forking the EVM limits the ability to access these contributions.

If you want to go fast, go alone; if you want to go far, join the EVM-equivalent ecosystem together.

Ecological Reproduction and Emergence

  • Replication and emergence  are necessary properties of self-reproducing systems that want to cover the globe.


  • Duplicate the application layer

    EVM equivalence allows developers to copy+paste DeFi code between all EVM-equivalent rollups. Any valuable new content found in one rollup can be immediately replicated in other rollups.


  • replication protocol layer

    EVM equivalence allows an EIP upgrade to be implemented on a separate rollup before being deployed to Ethereum L1. This provides a production-ready testbed for experimental EIPs, which can then be safely implemented on L1.

“Fear the Blank”

Nature hates blank space. And the crypto world is like nature; it slowly fills every void it finds.

The “last mile” problem of encrypted networks, and how we can solve it.

EIP is the new gene. EVM equivalence enables L2 to integrate EIPs of its choice asynchronously and independently. Each L2 will adopt an EIP that is respected by its community.

Ethereum will adapt to signals from L2 users; each L2 represents the user’s preferred data antenna. The signal to Ethereum is:

  • This is the EIP the community wants
  • This EIP is safe to deploy

extended public goods

Optimism’s Retroactive Public Goods Fundraising is a novel social incentive mechanism designed to inject Silicon Valley-style financial incentives into projects that build public goods for L2.

Obtain economic benefits from the sale of L2 block space to fund L2 public goods

Public goods R&D on Optimism can be replicated and propagated throughout the ecosystem due to EVM equivalence

push the organism forward

➤  Inexpensive fees, EVM equivalence, and retroactive public goods funding are the elements needed to generate positive external growth at the frontier of the cryptoeconomic network.

Understanding ✨EVM Equivalence✨

EVM equivalence: fully consistent with the specification of the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM, Ethereum Virtual Machine)

The design philosophy of EVM equivalence is to create an optimistic rollup with “minimal differences” from Ethereum.

EVM equivalence extends the properties of Ethereum into L2, blurring the line between “Ethereum L1 exits history” and “EVM-equivalent L2 debut”.

This is the difference between scaling on Ethereum and scaling Ethereum itself.

The optimistic rollup of the EVM, a perfect clone of Ethereum, not only inherits the security of Ethereum; it also shares aspects of its network effects.

Other L2 design structures do not have all the privileges of accessing Ethereum network effects and are always more specialized than other competitors with EVM equivalence.

Explaining EVM Equivalence: Promoting the Development of L2 Open Source Ecosystem

EVM compatibility is dead. Either optimize for generality by following the Ethereum standard (so choose the same standard as everyone else); or build something completely different, highly optimized for your use case (see ZK-rollups).

To fully extend the power of Ethereum into L2, we cannot stop at EVM compatibility.

We need EVM equivalence.

Compatibility and Equivalence

The Optimism team introduced EVM equivalence last year and discussed the technical distinction between equivalence and compatibility.

Rollup has been hailed as our scaling savior: “Finally, there is an L2 that can run Uniswap!”

The earliest rollups did this by completely recreating Uniswap, using custom code on a custom built rollup.

This is not enough.

The network effects of EVM go far beyond Solidity itself. Numerous support tools give Ethereum developers superpowers. Because these tools also run on top of the EVM standard, they are not suitable for custom built rollups. Not to mention that protocol developers have to put a lot of effort into creating something Solidity compatible!

In EVM equivalence, the EVM itself is copied and pasted into L2. Their bottom layer is the same.

EVM is a city

David Mihal (who helped me understand this) gave me this analogy:

“Open source code is like a city. It was created spontaneously from the bottom up by many developers who found problems and built solutions. Over time, the city was optimized, stronger and more efficient.. .

…EVM-compatible chains are like the Las Vegas version of Paris; they’re trying to artificially replicate something organic. “

Open source software is a public good maintained and updated by the respective community.

Developers who use open source software encounter all kinds of problems; some are minor, some are critical, and some are in between. Some developers take the time to address these issues and then lobby the community to accept their input. If the community recognizes the value of these things, their contributions will be merged to form a new version. As a result, new standards are created, and the utility and robustness of the software increases.

Like a nascent city, builders come here and produce what the surrounding community needs and values. Shared resources and utilities arise from this, and since this is formed through code, they never rot. It’s a one-way road of increasing value; as long as everyone builds on the same foundation.

Each developer builds in his own direction and finds his own specific contribution to add to the collective. Gradually, a robust public good is built with contributions from thousands of developers.


Here’s Geth’s story.

Geth has slowly absorbed meaningful contributions from Ethereum developers over the past few years and developed a set of software with the most network effects, both inside and outside of Ethereum.

Explaining EVM Equivalence: Promoting the Development of L2 Open Source Ecosystem

That’s why Geth has become a point of reference for a large part of the industry. Those who fork Geth and create their own blockchains are still contributing to the same foundation on which Ethereum rests.

If Geth forks deviate from the reference version, they also deviate from the largest network effect in Web3. The more this one-time copy chain develops in different directions, the more manpower and resources are required to keep up with the development of the core network.

EVM vehicle group (peloton)

Peloton refers to a group or group of road cyclists. Riders in the group save their energy by following behind other riders. In such a mode, drag is significantly reduced; riding in the middle of a growing group, drag can be reduced to 5%-10%. Taking advantage of this potential energy savings, there will be a very complex cooperative and competitive interaction between riders and teams in terms of race tactics.

If you want to go fast, go alone; if you want to go far, go together.

The larger the fleet, the higher the efficiency and the faster the speed. Air resistance is distributed across a wider group; as the group size increases, so does the efficiency of the group. In the middle of a group of cars, the rider is basically useless, because you can use the power of the entire team to move forward. The leader of the group, on the other hand, needs to withstand all the headwind resistance and has to expend extra power to set the speed of the group, so the leader often has to ride hard.

But when the leader gets tired and the pace slows down, there will be many contributors in the team to take the lead.

Explaining EVM Equivalence: Promoting the Development of L2 Open Source Ecosystem

Explaining EVM Equivalence: Promoting the Development of L2 Open Source Ecosystem

Caterpillars in rainforests move faster in groups than individually.

Open source communities will always grow faster than centralized teams. The reason this industry is growing so fast is because it’s like a collaborative flywheel . We build on each other’s success, and when one of us keeps moving forward, it takes us all forward — like these caterpillars.

EVM equivalence is a bottom-up, city-like public good. On the other hand, EVM Compatibility is a one-off copy of it.

There are countless ways to deviate from the EVM, but there is only one way to follow the EVM.

Duplicate the application layer

Creating an L2 ecosystem with EVM equivalence is critical to maintaining network effects that are composable and interoperable.

Rollup with EVM equivalence allows developers to instantly copy-paste codebases across chains. This means that development and innovation on a single EVM-equivalent rollup can seamlessly migrate to any other EVM-equivalent optimistic rollup, as well as Ethereum itself. Since everything is developed on top of the EVM standard, the network effects of L1 are extended to L2, and innovations at L2 are echoed throughout the ecosystem.

When a line of code is deployed on an ORU, it does more than deploy the line of code itself. If you are an open source developer and want your code to be widely used, you will naturally want to use an EVM-equivalent ORU so that your code is immediately compatible with all other EVM-equivalent ORUs.

If you write code once, but it works seamlessly on 1000s of EVM-compatible chains, the value of the code you create is far greater.

EVM equivalence takes the network effects of EVM to a whole new level.

A non-EVM-equivalent ORU would not benefit from these shared network effects. The link between the Ethereum network, the EVM-equivalent ORU, and the non-EVM-equivalent L2 is broken due to the lack of a design philosophy of “minimal differentiation” in the non-EVM-equivalent ORU.

The huge wave of Ethereum network effects is compounded by each newly added EVM-equivalent ORU. If you don’t ride this wave, you’ll have to swim really hard to keep up.

Explaining EVM Equivalence: Promoting the Development of L2 Open Source Ecosystem

replication protocol layer

These EVM network effects apply not only to Ethereum’s application layer, but also to the protocol layer itself — where things get a lot more interesting.

Because EVM-equivalent ORUs have “minimal differences” with Ethereum, they thus provide a test bed for Ethereum (new EIPs can be tested in a real production environment).

For now, EIP is being tested on Ethereum’s testnet. The EIP is tested multiple times on the testnet to ensure that there will be no glitches when it finally integrates into Ethereum L1.

Doing so is always risky, as there is no “minimal difference” between testnet and Ethereum. There is a difference between implementing an EIP in Goerli or Koven and implementing an EIP in Ethereum. The difference lies in the scale, importance, and nature of economic activity on top of Ethereum that testnets cannot simulate. When implementing new EIPs on Ethereum, there will always be some “unknowns”.

EVM equivalence provides a solution.

If an EIP is successfully implemented in an EVM-equivalent ORU, it provides a strong guarantee to the underlying chain that the same EIP can be successfully integrated into it without any vulnerabilities. The EVM-equivalent ORU provides a real production environment for the EIP to test, generating real economic activity and with real capital risk. EIP can be tested at the ORU layer without risking damage or impact to the system.

When L2 generally adopts the same EIP, this signals to Ethereum L1 that the EIP is accepted by the community and that this EIP can be safely integrated into L1.

The EVM-equivalent ORU enables Ethereum to sense the desires of L2 participants, making each L2 an antenna that is attuned to the needs and desires of users. The “command & control” governance of traditional finance (TradFi) and Web2 is transformed into the “sense & response” paradigm in Web3.

Because each ORU is its own independent economy, it will implement various EIPs independently and asynchronously based on the needs and desires of users, independent of the rest of the ecosystem.

Over time, as more and more independent ORUs recognize the value of the same EIP, the best EIP will dominate the L2 ORU market. If an EIP starts to dominate the entire ORU ecosystem, this signals to Ethereum L1 that it is a good EIP and that it is safe to implement it at the L1 protocol layer.

Explaining EVM Equivalence: Promoting the Development of L2 Open Source Ecosystem

There will be many forked versions of Optimism on Ethereum. When they both accept the same EIPs, this signals to Ethereum L1 that these EIPs are required by users and can be safely deployed.

Summarizing EVM Equivalence

Significance of EVM equivalence: Ethereum freed from the constraints of L1. The features of “Ethereum” can be extended to L2. The line between Ethereum L1 and EVM-equivalent L2 has become very blurred. There is no such cut-off point anymore: Ethereum L1 is out of history and the EVM-equivalent L2 is on the show.

It’s all Ethereum.

fear blank

“Nature hates emptiness” – Aristotle

Nature is really good at filling in the blanks. The more suitable an organism is for evolution, the more space it occupies. Animals consume food and reproduce to the maximum extent the environment allows. All plants are expressions of fractals because fractals are algorithms that maximize surface area. If the surface area of ​​a plant increases, so does its ability to absorb sunlight from its leaves and nutrients from its roots.

Explaining EVM Equivalence: Promoting the Development of L2 Open Source Ecosystem

The Amazon rainforest is one of the most biodiverse regions in the world, with <2% of sunlight reaching the ground because trees capture sunlight very efficiently.

Explaining EVM Equivalence: Promoting the Development of L2 Open Source Ecosystem

last mile problem

The last mile refers to the final step in the journey of moving goods and people from a transportation hub to their final destination. The “last mile” problem describes the difficulty of this step. Some of the challenges in “last mile” delivery include minimizing costs, ensuring transparency, increasing efficiency and improving infrastructure.

Nature is really good at solving last mile problems. This is a natural consequence of “survival of the fittest”; that is, the organisms that can best replicate and reproduce fill the voids in their living space.

Even within a single organism, fractal structures are fundamental patterns for scaling up an organism and increasing its efficiency. The lungs are responsible for capturing oxygen and distributing it into the blood; the circulatory system is responsible for delivering oxygen and other nutrients to the very end of the organism.

Explaining EVM Equivalence: Promoting the Development of L2 Open Source Ecosystem

A fractal is a structure in which each substructure has the same properties as the overall structure. Fractal structures can be thought of as a never-ending pattern, and both reproducibility and reproducibility are components of fractals.

Only replicable and reproducible structures can effectively fill gaps in nature. The crypto world is a world with a lot of white space; there is still a lot to build. But to fill all these gaps with new structures, we need systems that can replicate and reproduce.

EVM equivalence builds the foundation needed to produce these features.

In a rollup ecosystem with EVM equivalence, Ethereum can replicate and multiply quickly, focusing on user needs and updating the code to reflect those needs.

Each L2 can develop in its own unique direction, specializing in whatever area it wants to specialize. A successful L2 with a lot of users and value signals to other L2s that it has found something valuable. We all know that the crypto industry is really booming, and once something proves to be useful, it gets copied and multiplied.

Once a new source of value is discovered by an L2, this source of value can be replicated and shared across the ecosystem and ultimately back at the center of the ecosystem.

EIP is the new gene

Richard Dawkins’ book “The Selfish Gene” discusses how each gene in an organism becomes the smallest unit of life, and its inherent egoism in its maintenance and replication provides the basic pattern upon which all life depends.

Good genes survive and bad genes die.

As the organism evolves and adapts, the genes that make the organism healthy spread over time through replication and reproduction across all species. Beneficial random mutations that occur in an individual organism help it survive and thrive better than other organisms, so this gene goes from being present in just one instance to being present in all possible instances because it’s a good gene.

In the modular Ethereum world, EIP is the new gene.

Good EIPs spread through the ecosystem, and bad EIPs die out.

Ethereum is a responsive, adaptive system, EVM-equivalent ORUs allow new genes to be implemented into organisms first at the fringes, and when a new EIP has proven its viability, this EIP is propagated to the rest of the in the ORU. If this EIP is good enough, it goes back to the heart of Ethereum: L1.

Ethereum becomes an organism capable of responding and adapting to its environment, even as its environment changes over time. Biological organisms have fixed genes from their origin, and Ethereum has the ability to invent and integrate new genes as needed to meet the changing needs of the world.

Discovering value in an EVM-equivalent paradigm can turn that value into a public good that can be shared across the entire Ethereum ecosystem, not just available in a specific L2.

Traceable Public Goods: Building Infrastructure for the Entire Ecosystem

Retroactive Public Goods Funding (RPGF) will transform Ethereum from a system that responds to user needs to a system that is proactive .

Optimism is pioneering a new model of public goods funding, injecting Silicon Valley-style financial incentives into projects that build public goods.

A product with the potential of a tech startup, but in the form of a public good.

The proceeds from L2 block space fees go directly to the innovators and founders who create valuable content for Optimism L2. The RPGF promises to provide a grant in the future, assuring public good builders that if they build a valuable public good, there will be a grant waiting for them.

Explaining EVM Equivalence: Promoting the Development of L2 Open Source Ecosystem

Web2 motivates builders and users, while Web3 empowers everyone – where impact = revenue.

The combination of RPGF and EVM equivalence means that when Optimism L2 builds something of value, it is immediately available to the entire ecosystem of EVM equivalence.

The sale of Optimism block space not only drives the development of the Optimism L2 infrastructure, but also the infrastructure of all L2 and ultimately Ethereum itself. Remember, the blockchain ecosystem has historically been notoriously underinvested in infrastructure and public goods.

Explaining EVM Equivalence: Promoting the Development of L2 Open Source Ecosystem

Source: Vitalik

The dual effort of RPGF and EVM equivalence offers us for the first time a promising path to address the tragedy of the commons. Not only for Optimism, L2 ecology, not only for Ethereum, but for the entire blue planet.

Step 1: Fundraising for Optimism’s Public Goods

Step 2: Extend these public goods (for free!) to other L2s

Step 3: Integrate these public goods on Ethereum

Step 4: Extend the reach of public goods from Ethereum to the world

Step 5: Solve the Global Collaboration Dilemma and Unlock the Future of Star Trek

Thanks for reading!

Posted by:CoinYuppie,Reprinted with attribution to:https://coinyuppie.com/explaining-evm-equivalence-promoting-the-development-of-l2-open-source-ecosystem/
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