Someone in the API3 Telegram channel asked this question:
I still don’t fully get why smart contracts need oracles, why is it that smart contracts are not able to query APIs the same way regular apps can? Is it purely because smart contracts are completely reactive to data and they can’t go out and make API calls themselves like a regular app running on a server?
Here was my answer, now written in Medium-form for future reference:
In order to update the state of the blockchain (i.e. make the network “do something”) you need to process a transaction. Since the…
I was asked to answer several questions for a media feature, but the article was unfortunately shelved, and I didn’t want my responses to go to waste :)
I realized while answering these questions, that this was the first time I publicly talked about blockchain really “high-level” — even though it’s something I think about a lot — so I thought it would be a good opportunity to share these “bird’s-eye view” thoughts on my blog (where I tend towards talking more low-level about technical blockchain-related things).
So, here are my warm & hot takes on blockchain, as they stand…
This is an introduction to one element of API3's technical design.
Airnode is an oracle node specifically engineered for API-provider operated oracles (i.e. first-party oracles). It is designed to interface APIs to smart contract platforms. This results in some very restrictive requirements. Such requirements are outlined in Section 4.2 of the API3 whitepaper.
Here, we will only focus on one of these requirements: standardized integration.
API–oracle node integration should be standardized…
This is a series of excerpts from an email exchange I had with Ayndryl, site admin and one of several contributors to Forgotten Languages.
It’s a pretty fluid discussion that curvedly touches on: linguistics, computer programming languages, cognitive psychology, Turing machines, quantum mechanics, and philosophy [having the final word].
If you’re familiar with their website this wouldn’t strike you as odd given that Forgotten Languages’ articles seem to, as a whole, cover seemingly every field of human study. …
This is a post summarizing this excellent research paper by Tim Roughgarden.
I will give an overview of the EIP-1559 proposal, restate Roughgarden’s “Ten Key Takeaways”, and offer a bit of a high-level and intuitive explanation for the proofs/arguments in his paper. (You can also just skip to the conclusion.)
(If you’re pretty familiar with Ethereum, feel free to skip this section.)
Like all computers, the Ethereum blockchain is a state machine.¹ Any given state of Ethereum is “simply” a mapping between addresses and account states — the account state is just the data stored by an account (e.g. …
This is kind of a Part 2 to my post How Mesa DEX Works which I wrote on November 27th, three days before the API3 public token distribution. During the distribution — in fact, right at the beginning — a previously untapped exploit was used by an attacker to purchase approximately 1.6 million API3 tokens for relatively cheap, at $0.56 USD per token. This result in the API3 DAO to raise ~$680,000 less than expected under normal circumstances. (In case you’re wondering: the attacker resold all of those tokens on Mesa, at a higher price, within a day.)
This is the final post in our series, “Getting APIs on the Blockchain”.
If you have been following this series from the beginning, I’m happy to say that you have already been introduced to the main elements and ideas behind API3’s design. This post simply shows how they fit together to solve the API Connectivity Problem.
In 2014, during my computer science masters, I had to write an 250-word “essay” for a scholarship application answering the question: “What do you think will be the future impact of data-driven computing on society?”
I re-read my response recently and found it interesting in light of modern day contexts. Note that this essay response was relatively controversial at the time and was the only selected essay with a negative sentiment.
As much as the analysis of larger and larger data sets has been touted as the future of computing, data-driven computing has the potential to have adverse effects if…
EDIT: I’ve written a Part 2 (“The Mesa DEX Exploit”) to this article that addresses the exploit that occurred during the API3 public token distribution event. I also amend some things mentioned in this article and include my updated thoughts on Mesa/Gnosis Protocol.
The API3 public token distribution will take place on Mesa DEX. There have been a lot of questions about how Mesa / Gnosis Protocol works and this article is meant to address that.
This is the 7th and penultimate post in our series, “Getting APIs on the Blockchain”. We have thus far, among other things, introduced the API Connectivity Problem and highlighted several major components of our solution — namely, first-party oracles and quantifiable security. This post highlights another major component of our design.
Much has been said — and much is yet to be said— about decentralized governance in the form of DAOs (decentralized autonomous organizations). This is because, the more we discuss the various approaches to DAO operation, the more in need we are of an objective function in which to…