• A not for profit Plasma group transitions into a profit-making platform aiming to increased Ethereum transactions throughput.
  • Optimism aims at making smart contracts execute on a second layer above the base layer thereby increasing the transactions per second.

Ethereum developers realized that mainstream adoption would remain to be a pipe dream especially with the network's throughput limited around 15 transactions per second (TPS). Therefore, it was going to be an uphill task using Ether in automated functions, for instance, supply chain management as well as loans. For this reason, scaling was the only way to achieve the network’s mission.

Optimism intends to utilize a layered methodology, resembling that of Bitcoin’s Lightning Network to raise the capacity of people who can tap into the network using smart contracts. Before 2020, Optimism was a research-oriented not for profit Plasm Group. Its main purpose was to develop and a second layer for Ethereum network. The group has recently restructured into a profit-making platform called Optimism. It is already backed by a $3.5 million fund from Paradigm and IDEO CoLab Ventures.

While the group sees the shift to a profit-making platform revolutionary, some critics like Dragonfly Capital partner Ashwin Ramachandran think its “the death of Plasma.” Ramachandran told CoinDesk via a phone interview:

It’s like this alien that morphed many times in many different forms and eventually died … at least in the form in which it initially launched.

Optimism has already hit the ground rolling and is expected to launch the Optimistic Virtual Machine (OVM) on Tuesday. The OVM is based on Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) and will be used to accord the second layer similar smart contract functionality of the blockchain underlying it. In a statement, the firm said:

The OVM enables support for all existing Ethereum developer tooling including Solidity and Vyper, testing frameworks like Truffle, wallets like Metamask, and libraries like Web3.js. We designed the OVM to be used as drop-in replacement for the EVM inside of Optimistic Rollup.

With smart contracts working above the base layer, Optimism developers hope to achieve utmost scalability for Ethereum. The second layer will in future contain optimistic rollups that will see more transactions processed faster.

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