Last month, most of the development team was preoccupied with strengthening the Aleph Zero chain, as well as upgrading its infrastructure and tooling to scale the network further. Besides that, we also put a lot of effort into the architecture of Aleph Zero validation, delegation, and staking, as well as WASM smart contracts — these items will be our main focus in the upcoming weeks.
Below, you can find a brief research and development update of work done throughout December, 2021.
December 2021 Deliverables
- Concluded the network revamp. Network revamp is the main step towards allowing safe connections of external nodes to the Aleph Zero network. In the upcoming weeks, we will be stress-testing these changes and finalizing the technical requirements for external connections, as well as working on other aspects of enabling community validators, such as publishing relevant documentation and tutorials in a more digestible form.
- Prepared and tested performing future runtime storage migrations.
- Improved internal tools for benchmarking, transaction flooding, and general stress-testing of Aleph Zero testnet and mainnet environments:
- Optimized the way connections are handled;
- Built tooling allowing to initialize chain with a specified number of test accounts (custom chainspecs);
- Upgraded the Aleph Zero transaction flooder by enabling it to store tx batches on disk and adding tx rate-limiting;
- Upgraded a tool that allows us to create snapshots of our chains on the fly and perform various tests and experiments on them.
- Improved internal tools for distributed tests on the AWS infrastructure. Automated performance data collection.
- Extensive testing of Aleph Zero’s performance and security-related properties using prepared tools.
- Finalized initial design of staking incentives.
Coming Up Next
- Aleph Zero Smartnet. A secondary testnet outside of the established development environment, launched specifically for the purpose of testing smart contracts, to be deployed in January.
- Community validators. Moving testnet towards next stages of decentralization.
With the post-launch maintenance done, we’re ready to start deploying new features on the Aleph Zero network. We’re beyond excited to see what the future brings!