Parse Celo’s L2 roadmap Why choose Celestia over Ethereum?

Recently, with the well-known stablecoin public chain Celo proposing a roadmap plan to switch to Celestia and establish a sovereign Rollup, the author began to think about what is wrong with Ethereum-based Rollup and Celestia-based Rollup, and the trade-offs between these two options.

Celo’s Mezcal Roadmap Plan

Celo is an EVM-compatible Proof-of-Stake (PoS) L1 blockchain network featuring innovative features of the Phone Identity System (PIS for short) and Plumo ultra-light client technology.

The so-called Phone Identity System, or PIS for short, is a service run using an authenticator to prove that new users can link their wallet address to their phone number, which enables users to send encrypted messages to each other just by their phone number Assets, from a user experience point of view, this is more conducive to the expansion of the user base.

Currently, the only PIS wallet used by Celo is Valora, which has not been a smooth attestation experience due to the decentralized nature of the attestation service and the fact that it needs to be run by an independent validator. To address this, Valora is moving to a federated proof model, where they can use a more centralized method to provide proofs to users and require users to trust the Valora wallet. For Valora, this appears to be a trade-off to improve the user experience, but it does make the overall system less decentralized.

Then there’s Plumo, an ultra-light client that runs on mobile phones because of its very small footprint. The client uses zkSNARK technology to compress hundreds of days of blocks into one SNARK proof. This allows for faster synchronization of blockchain clients on mobile devices.

Plumo was originally designed to run on Valora, but currently the Valora wallet does not use the Plumo light client, but relies on third-party RPC node providers to synchronize with the blockchain.

This situation is obviously bad. In order to better focus on application development and promotion, Ocelot, the Celo ecological financial library organization, recently proposed an alternative roadmap called “Mezcal‌”:

“Celo should be an L2 ecosystem, and furthermore, we think it should be an EVM-compatible and interoperable L2 that focuses on its core tasks without worrying about L1 consensus. One of the best networks for the vision is Celestia, the first modular blockchain network that creates a so-called data availability layer that provides consensus mechanisms and transaction ordering, while separating execution work to the L2 layer. Here, All Celo needs to do as an L2 is to sample data availability via Celestia for transactions related to the Celo network. It doesn’t even need to download the entire Celestia block, just the tx related to Celo.
This helps solve a lot of problems :

For example, Celo will no longer bear the burden of validators and consensus issues, as it will use the Celestia network to implement this shared security and data availability approach. Celestia as a modular blockchain provides Celo with many different customizations while still allowing Celo to focus on its mission. And Celo’s core developers don’t need to worry about consensus anymore and can just focus on improving the EVM on Celo. “

To achieve the above vision and prove the concept, Ocelot plans to build an incentivized and canary testnet called Mezcal for Celo. Another major goal of the incentivized testnet is to move a copy of Celo onto Celestia as an L2 Rollup to achieve this vision, and the entire migration process will be done incrementally through 3 phases.

Ethereum-based VS Celestia-based, which option is better?

And Celo’s roadmap plan also throws us a very important question, why Celo’s L2 is not based on Ethereum, but chooses to be based on Celestia? ( Note: Since   the two DA solutions of Ethereum danksharding‌ and Celestia have not yet been launched, this article does not consider the comparison of the two solutions )

And the Ethereum Rollup layer 2 networks we are familiar with now, such as zksync, StarkNet, Arbitrum One, Optimism, what are the differences between their choices and Celo’s choices?

On this issue, let’s take a look at how the industry commented.

Ryan Watkins, former Messari senior analyst:

Parse Celo's L2 roadmap Why choose Celestia over Ethereum?

“Celo plans to restructure a $3 billion L1 blockchain into a sovereign rollup on top of Celestia, and as the modular infrastructure matures, I expect more projects will choose to do so as they realize By the time data availability, consensus, settlement and execution need not be tied together.
The split of blockchain is just beginning.

Faina.eth, an L2 blockchain engineer from ConsenSys, disagreed with Ryan Watkins, commenting:

“But if they’re not tied together, then ‘rollup’ is just a sidechain, isn’t it? That’s not wrong in itself, but we should clarify the terminology.”

So which statement is more worthy of recognition?

Let’s first use a picture to briefly understand the differences in the architecture of Ethereum, Celestia and sidechains (Note: The sidechains in the picture do not have modular layers).

Parse Celo's L2 roadmap Why choose Celestia over Ethereum?

(Note: The original image is from Peter Watts, the author has expanded the side chain option)

At present, the Ethereum Rollup layer 2 network we are familiar with is an execution layer, and the data availability, consensus and settlement layers of these projects are all Ethereum. We believe that such a Rollup layer 2 network will theoretically have security close to the Ethereum main network (such as the future mature zkSync, loopring, Arbitrum, Optimism, etc.).

For Layer 2 networks using off-chain solutions such as Validium and zkPorter, they increase the throughput of Layer 2 networks at the expense of data availability and security (such as the current Immutable X).

There are currently three types of architectures that choose Celestia:

  1. Sovereign Rollup : The data availability layer and consensus layer are Celestia, and the settlement layer and execution layer are their own sovereign chains;
  2. Settlement Rollup (representing project Cevmos): The data availability layer and consensus layer are Celestia, the settlement layer is Cevmos, and the application chain is the execution layer; (For what Cevmos is, you can see this article on DeFi Road ‌)
  3. Celestium : The data availability layer is Celestia, the consensus layer and settlement layer are Ethereum, and the application chain is the execution layer; (For what Celestium is, you can see this article on DeFi Road ‌)

Celestia founder Mustafa Al-Bassam commented on the sovereign rollup:

“The sovereign rollup is itself an independent chain, like a Cosmos zone or L1, it is not a ‘baby chain’ or ‘L2’ for other settlement layers.”

Of course, the application chain using the Celestia architecture is fundamentally different from the completely independent L1 side chain, because the four layers of the side chain are themselves, so the consensus security, data availability security and throughput of the side chain are also completely dependent on its own system.

For projects with limited resources, building a completely independent sidechain may not be a wise move.

Now, assuming that we all agree that the security of Ethereum is greater than Celestia, then considering whether to be based on Ethereum or Celestia, the actual trade-off point is to choose to sacrifice security in exchange for independence and scalability, or choose to sacrifice independence and scalability. Scalability in exchange for security.

In the case of Celestia, an application chain like Celo will have the right to hard fork independently of any other chain or community, which allows the chain to respond to hacks and push upgrades without permission, which has better flexibility.

And in the case of choosing Ethereum, the most obvious benefit is that it is less likely to be attacked.

These two options seem to have their own reasons, and they also have their own more suitable application scenarios. Therefore, when the results cannot be clearly seen in the short term, supporting at the same time may be a good strategy.

Posted by:CoinYuppie,Reprinted with attribution to:
Coinyuppie is an open information publishing platform, all information provided is not related to the views and positions of coinyuppie, and does not constitute any investment and financial advice. Users are expected to carefully screen and prevent risks.

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