March 27, 2023

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Answering the Call

March 24, 2023

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Code Audits

March 22, 2023

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Forgetting the Past

March 21, 2023

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digital daily: Redundancy

Every superhero has an Achilles heel. “The Flash” is one that is uniquely harmed by his own powers, where too much speed results in self-inflicted wounds. Solana plays the role of “Flash” in digital markets. It is one of the fastest blockchains, limited only by the outer bounds of its demanding hardware and networking requirements. Yet, the self-inflicted wounds are evident in the record of Solana's downtime. These halts bring uncertainty, creating a reluctance to trust the system with increasingly valuable operations. In turn, this slows investment and growth. One of the primary contributors to the downtime is a lack of redundancy. Solana has only one validator client (the software that operates decentralized networks). Ethereum, as a counterpoint, has many, all built and run by independent teams. When an error causes a validator client to go down, the others carry on in its place, unlikely to fail on the same error. Over time, this robustness, born of redundancy, has differentiated Ethereum. Jump Trading, no stranger to the demands of going fast and the value of redundancy, has world-class experience in computing and networking. The company’s crypto division has decided to build, the second Solana validator client. If successful, this effort could materially reduce Solana’s fragility, bringing much-needed confidence to developers, investors, and users on the network. Jump’s initiative highlights an emerging trend where skills are imported from other domains to solve problems that decentralized networks have created along their path of explosive growth. If successful, firedancer could dramatically reduce Solana’s self-inflicted wounds, improving its reliability and enabling the network to capture the value of its superpower: speed. Two validators are much better than one. Redundancy equals growth.