Cardano’s long-awaited Vasil hard fork will be implemented today.
The highly-regarded blockchain, with its native ADA token, has been building towards the upgrade for months, with technicians working around the clock to deliver what many in the cryptocurrency industry anticipate will be the dawning of a new era for the four-year-old platform.
Named after one of the company’s most celebrated characters – Vasil Dabov, who passed away in December 2021 – the update is designed to increase the chain’s output and reduce costs while improving smart contract capabilities.
At the same time, Vasil will bring about a new version of Plutus – Cardano’s native smart contract language. Plutus is, effectively, a foundation that separates the smart contract-driving code from on-chain transaction validation. Plutus V2 is expected to go live next week when Vasil has been running for several days.
The complex changes to Cardano’s ledger will enable inputs and unspent transaction output (UTXO) to be used in scripting contracts, thus reducing the size of transactions which had previously created lags.
In simple terms, and according to Cardano technical director Matthias Benkort, the intricate upgrade is all about enhancing security and audit.
“Some see blockchains as fully programmable platforms, game engines, databases and whatnot. But they really aren’t,” he explained.
“They’re ledgers, and they keep track of transactions.”
According to one of Cardano’s most senior figures – UK-based Tim Harrison, VP of Community and Ecosystem – today’s upgrade will significantly improve and enhance Cardano’s capabilities.
“The community is eagerly anticipating these updates to Plutus,” he said.
“Several much-awaited new DeFi projects, including Indigo Protocol, Liqwid Finance, and Maladex intend to leverage v2 capabilities when they launch. And many other, currently live projects will upgrade their code to take full advantage of the new capabilities.
“Such a broad scope of enhancements means that the Cardano ecosystem will see brand new dApps and new improved dApps (after updating and auditing) begin deploying during Q4 and beyond.”
The hardfork’s namesake – Vasil Dabov – was a Bulgarian mathematician, programmer, polymath and conservationist who planted more 10,000 trees in his lifetime.
“So it is especially poignant – and entirely coincidental – that September 22nd is also the anniversary of the 1908 declaration of independence of the Bulgarian state from the Ottoman empire,” Harrison added.
“A ‘happy accident’ for a steadfast and highly deliberate community that imparts additional meaning to this most significant of upgrades.”