Cardano is making steady progress towards launching a fully functional smart contract platform by September this year. Yesterday on 6th July 2021, the parent company of the largest Proof-of-Stake blockchain IOHK announced on Twitter that the testnet to support smart contract is publically available and new user onboarding has begun.
Cardano has a very well-defined roadmap and follows a peer-reviewed academic approach for development. The project embraced the philosophy of openness in software development and implemented software features using an evidence-based method. Over the years, Cardano’s research team has published over 100 academic research papers, all the way from distributed systems to programming languages and game theory.
Also, see – Cardano (ADA) awesome curated resources
Cardano has evolved through different eras (versions), each adding new key features to the blockchain network. The smart contract is part of Cardano’s Goguen era’s highly anticipated hard fork named Alonzo (named after US mathematician Alonzo Church). It is also the last stage of the Goguen era, whose purpose is to make it possible to write smart contracts on the blockchain in the Plutus programming language. This upgrade will enable developers to finally be able to build decentralized applications (DApps) on the blockchain.
The Alonzo hard fork is divided into multiple phases. Alonzo has entered into the “Purple” phase which was preceded by “Blue” and “White”. This marks a major step towards smart contract development and launch. Alonzo Blue and Alonzo White were limited to 50 users and 500 users respectively but the Alonzo “Purple” testnet is fully public. This means all the members of the Plutus pioneer program, all stake pool operators, and exchanges can now participate in the testing of the smart contracts once the initial team has been successfully onboarded.
IOHK team is also systematically onboarding cryptocurrency exchanges and making them “Alonzo HF-ready” to ensure that after the hard fork, exchanges users can maintain uninterrupted deposits and withdrawals of their ADA token and do not have to wait. IOHK will also publish a page this coming week where users can track this integration work and check if their preferred exchange is Alonzo ready or not.