EffiRoll: Ethereum's Cost-Effective Rollup Solution
Zero-knowledge proof solutions have played an immensely crucial role in the ongoing evolution and expansion of the Ethereum ecosystem. The innovative concept of proto-danksharding, which is on the horizon, is generating considerable anticipation due to its potential to bring about a substantial reduction in the cost associated with rollups. This intriguing development was recently discussed by Nicolas Liochon, the distinguished head of Consensys' zkEVM Linea, during an engaging conversation at Korea Blockchain Week.
Intriguingly, Liochon, during this spirited discussion, ventured to make a bold estimate, suggesting that proto-danksharding might wield the power to curtail rollup expenses by a staggering factor of ten, which undoubtedly piques the curiosity of Ethereum enthusiasts and industry observers alike.
Proto-danksharding, also affectionately known by its Ethereum Improvement Proposal (EIP) identifier EIP-4844, has embarked on a mission to tackle the persistent issue of high costs associated with rollups. The concept of rollups, which efficiently batch transactions and data off-chain before presenting computational proofs to the Ethereum blockchain, has been integral to enhancing scalability.
Despite the palpable excitement surrounding proto-danksharding, it's worth noting that the Ethereum Foundation has yet to pinpoint a specific launch date, as the intricate phases of development and rigorous testing are still ongoing, which is a common and prudent practice in the realm of blockchain technology.
As Liochon passionately elaborated on the subject, Linea, the brainchild of Consensys, has been gaining attention for its remarkable ability to deliver transactions at a jaw-dropping 15 times lower cost compared to those executed on Ethereum's foundational layer 1. However, even with this groundbreaking achievement, the realm of rollups still grapples with certain limitations, primarily stemming from the practice of posting transactions in call data within Ethereum blocks.
A deeper dive into Ethereum's documentation reveals that rollups continue to bear a heavy price tag, primarily due to data availability concerns. Currently, all Ethereum nodes dutifully process call data, and this data, despite its temporary necessity, remains archived on-chain indefinitely.
In a remarkable twist, EIP-4844 introduces the concept of data blocks that can be seamlessly transmitted and attached to the blockchain. This data, intriguingly, remains off-limits to the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM), and its lifecycle is inherently designed for deletion after a predefined timeframe. This innovative approach is poised to usher in a new era of cost-efficient transactions within the Ethereum ecosystem.
"In essence," as Liochon pointed out, "the cost dynamics of rollups revolve predominantly around the question of data availability. Our current practice involves meticulous data recording on layer 1, a strategy that ensures a consistent level of security. However, it comes at a substantial cost, accounting for a staggering 95% of the overall expenses."
Intriguingly, Liochon emphasized that the Linea project's prover component, responsible for handling off-chain computations, verification, bundling, and the creation of cryptographic proofs for combined transactions, constitutes only a modest fraction, merely a fifth, of the overall cost equation.
This particular revelation highlights a substantial hurdle that ZK-rollups, despite their undeniable potential, must overcome to establish themselves as the go-to scaling solution for the Ethereum ecosystem, particularly when compared to alternative solutions such as Optimistic Rollups.
Furthermore, Liochon emphasized the broader ambitions of the Linea project, underlining its aspiration to serve as a versatile and adaptable ZK-rollup solution. This adaptability positions Linea to cater to a wide spectrum of decentralized applications and solutions within the diverse and vibrant Ethereum ecosystem.
"In essence," Liochon concluded, "we aspire to be a universal rollup. Our vision is one that transcends specific use cases or domains. We believe it's of paramount importance to extend our support to all types of applications, including but not limited to the exciting realms of DeFi, gaming, and social applications, as we collectively navigate the future of Ethereum's growth and innovation."