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Zenkai boosting the EVM using parallel execution (featuring Monad)

Monad

If you’ve spent any amount of time on Twitter in the past months, then you have probably heard of Monad before. Gmonad’s, memes of the week, thursday purgedays, and purple… ehh… creatures?

Let’s just say that Monad is hard to ignore. Which made me think. Is there a method to this madness?

Let’s find out!

TL;DR:

  • Monad is an EVM-compatible layer-1 blockchain that fundamentally optimizes in the realms of consensus and execution
  • By addressing key bottlenecks in the EVM, Monad is able to achieve 10.000 TPS, 1 second block times, and 1 second finality.
  • Monad heavily optimizes the EVM, while still maintaining portability. Which means Monad will be similar to the user experience on Ethereum and its layer-2 networks. Only faster. And Cheaper.
  • Applications built on Ethereum can port over their Dapp to Monad without any changes to the code. On Monad, users will be able to use tools they are already familiar with. Such as Metamask and Etherscan.
  • While Monad is widely known for its parallel execution, they introduce optimizations in four major areas:
  • MonadBFT (consensus mechanism)
  • Deferred Execution (decoupling execution from consensus)
  • Parallel Execution (concurrently processing transactions on separate processing cores)
  • MonadDb (custom database for storing blockchain state)
  • Monad achieves extreme performance while maintaining decentralization. In contrast, most layer-1’s have to pick between decentralization or speed, while heavily compromising on one of these aspects.
  • The core thesis of Monad is about applying core computer science concepts to blockchain systems. Ultimately solving the performance limitations/bottlenecks found in the EVM:
  • Inefficient storage access patterns
  • Single-threaded execution
  • Very limited execution budget, because consensus can’t proceed without execution
  • Concerns about state growth, and the effect of state growth on future state access costs

What is Monad?

It is not just the technology and innovations that makes Monad so special. Monad has made significant strides in building a vibrant community. Something that not many teams are able to achieve. While the community they have built so far is commendable, it is even more impressive to achieve this when users do not have a financial stake in your success (yet).

Monad is mostly known for its innovative approach to scaling the EVM by using parallel execution. It is worth noting that parallel execution is just one of four major areas in which Monad has made incredible progress.

By innovating from the ground up, the team has built a blockchain that achieves:

  • 10,000 transactions per second
  • 1-second block times
  • single-slot finality
  • full EVM bytecode compatibility

And, as if 10,000 TPS is not impressive enough, Monad aims to push the boundaries of scalability by approaching the physical limits of bandwidth. The long term target is to achieve 400,000 transactions per second.

Scaling to 400,000 TPS opens the door for novel use cases in the context of EVMs that require significantly more scalability and performance than is currently available in other networks. Since Monad allows seamless porting of applications from the EVM to its native environment, it is a logical chain to migrate to for teams that feel limited by their current environment.

Achieving scalability and performance through parallel execution]

Imagine you’re trying to hit chest on international chest day (Monday), and every brotard has to wait in line because your gym only has one bench press. Seems inefficient, right?

This is how transactions are processed on most blockchains. One by one, where each new tx gets added to the queue. Though you can ‘skip the line’ if you’re willing to pay a higher gas fee than others.

Now, what if your gym had two bench presses? Boom. We just achieved parallel execution.

In Blockchains, parallel execution allows multiple transactions to be processed simultaneously. Thus increasing transactional throughput, reducing latency, and significantly boosting the overall efficiency of the network.

Achieving parallel execution in Monad]

Monad uses algorithms to analyze transaction dependencies and determine the correct execution order. Dependencies can be the account that creates the transaction, or the smart contract that the transaction is linked to.

Transactions that do not have common dependencies can be executed in parallel without affecting the outcome. Thus, these transactions are processed concurrently on separate processing cores. Transactions that do have common dependencies are scheduled sequentially to ensure data integrity.

Over time, improvements will be made to the algorithms that determined the transaction dependencies. Thus allowing for the network to become even faster and more efficient over time.

Parallelism through pipelining

Taken from Monad’s Gitbook:

Pipelining is a technique for implementing parallelism by dividing tasks into a series of smaller tasks which can be processed in parallel. Pipelining is used in computer processors to increase the throughput of executing a series of instructions sequentially at the same clock rate.

The GitBook references an analogy by Prof. Lois Hawkes which shows what pipelining would look like if applied to doing the laundry:

pipelining

What’s faster?

  • Completing the entire laundry sequence, before starting the next one? Or;
  • Starting to wash load 2 when load 1 goes into the dryer?

Pipelining gets work done more efficiently by utilizing multiple resources simultaneously.

Why I’m so excited about Monad

Architecting community

As a DeFi degenerate I appreciate a founder who strikes the balance between strong technology and memeability. A ‘shitposting at 9 and applying computer science concepts at 10’ type of founder.

That balance is not easy to find, and something I see a lot of teams fail at miserably.

Building an ecosystem

One thing that really caught my attention was this tweet by Keone:

I’ve said this many times: a blockchain is only as strong as its ecosystem. Sure, 10,000 TPS sounds amazing, but there needs to be 10,000 TPS worth of transactional demand. Imagine sitting in an 812 Superfast and driving under the speed limit.

Sticking with that analogy, when you have a powerful machine like that, you’ll want to use its full capabilities. You want to put all that horsepower to use.

Which means that Monad has to put significant emphasis on:

  • Attracting and supporting developers
  • Attracting users and volume

As far as attracting developers goes, Monad seems to be providing tons of support to aspiring builders on Monad. As seen in the tweet from Keone.

Thanks for reading, anon <3

Want to learn more about Monad? Check out their website: monad.xyz or their Twitter: @monad_xyz

Want to chat crypto? Or just hang out with like-minded gamblers investors?

Join the Rarestone Compass community: t.me/rarestonecompass

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