What is polygon (MATIC)?
Right now it is reasonable to assume that multi-chaining is our future. In other words, instead of one completely dominant blockchain, there will likely be an infinite number of interconnected networks, and each network will have different attributes, assumptions about reliability, performance and security.
Polygon aims to bring this future closer to reality by providing a framework for developing Ethereum-compatible scaling solutions. Their Proof of Stake (PoS) sidechain has caught the interest of the Bitcoin and crypto community.
Ethereum’s long-awaited scaling roadmap is finally bearing fruit and the Polygon Project is part of that effort.
You may have heard of Cosmos and the vision of the “Internet of the Blockchain” through the Inter-Blockchain Communication Protocol (IBC). IBC can be used to transfer messages between different blockchains that have implemented the protocol.
Polygon’s vision is a bit like that, but they adapted the concept specifically for the Ethereum ecosystem. The idea is that developers can easily bring an Ethereum compatible scaling solution or even a standalone blockchain to market.
Originally the project was called Matic Network, but was later changed to Polygon as the scope was expanded from a single layer 2 (L2) solution to a network of networks.
What is polygon
Polygon is a framework for building Ethereum compatible blockchain networks and scaling solutions. Polygon is more of a protocol than a single solution. Because of this, one of the ecosystem’s key offerings is the Polygon SDK, which developers can use to create an Ethereum-compatible network.
However, you may have heard of Polygon Network, a PoS sidechain and one of the first direct products of the Polygon ecosystem. Sidechain is basically a parallel chain connected to another blockchain.
Sidechains can offer a number of benefits, the most important of which are increased transaction throughput and low fees. If you’ve used the Polygon Network, you know that it is extremely fast and very inexpensive compared to Ethereum. However, they have to trade a few things to achieve this performance.
Since Polygon supports the Ethereum Virtual Machine (Ethereum Virtual Machine – EVM), it’s easy to migrate existing applications to the platform. As such, Polygon offers users an experience comparable to Ethereum, combined with high throughput and low cost.
In other words, as a user at Polygon, you can do the same things as at Ethereum, but much cheaper and faster. Some of the most popular decentralized finance applications (dapps) have been deployed on it, such as Aave, 1inch, Curve, and Sushi. But there are also some native apps on Polygon that don’t exist elsewhere, like QuickSwap and Slingshot.
Polygon grew under the leadership of the founding team Jaynti Kanani, Sandeep Nailwal, Anurag Arjun and Mihailo Bjelic.
Polygon founding team (top row) and advisory board (bottom row)
How does polygon work?
Polygon’s framework supports 2 main types of networks compatible with Ethereum: secure chains and independent chains. An example of a secure chain is a rollup, while an example of a stand-alone chain is a sidechain.
Secure chains rely on the infrastructure of the chain they are connected to, so they do not have to adopt their own security model. In contrast, independent chains must implement security themselves. This means that secure chains tend to offer a higher level of security, while independent chains offer more flexibility for specific needs.
So what about the polygon network? The polygon sidechain is secured by its own validator (validation pool) and occasionally has to send checkpoints to Ethereum. For this reason, some people say that sidechains are not a “pure” Layer 2 solution. They need to secure their own instead of using the security of Ethereum. This is an important distinction.
In the future, the Polygon platform will support further scaling solutions, including Zero-Knowledge-Rollup (zk), Optimistic Rollup and Validum Chain. The more of these extensions are available, the more tools are available to developers to develop innovative apps, solutions and products. Additionally, we can expect all of them to be compatible with existing Ethereum wallets and tools like MetaMask.
use cases character MATIC
Despite the renaming, the MATIC token keeps its name. MATIC is used to pay gas charges on the network and to participate in governance. If you want to use your MATIC, you can do so on Binance Earn, OKex Earn or via the Matic Web Wallet set up by the Polygon team.
Polygon Bridge is the most convenient way to transfer money from another blockchain network to the Polygon sidechain. Note that you will still have to pay transaction fees for the mainnet, as the bridge transaction takes place on the mainnet.
However, once that is done, you can start enjoying the low fees and fast transactions that Polygon offers. On the other hand, some centralized exchanges (CEX) also offer direct payouts to the Polygon Network.
Side chain and roll up
In general, there is no consensus on whether sidechains like rollups can be described as a Layer 2 solution. Understanding their differences is important when navigating the multi-chain world and considering the various tradeoffs.
They all have different assumptions about reliability, security, performance, user experience, and developer. As a secure chain, rollups are one of the most promising Layer 2 scaling solutions as they inherit most of Ethereum’s security.
However, other solutions like the polygon sidechain are not like that. That’s not to say it’s not safe, but if the bad guys collude, they can control the network (at least in theory). There is no indication of this intent at the moment, but it is worth considering. Using a sidechain requires trust, not just for the network validator, but also for the bridge between the two chains.
Think about other compromises as well. When you use the Ethereum network, you pay higher transaction fees and slower transaction times, but you have the strongest security and the least trust in any party.
When you use rollup, you pay less fees, the same level of security and faster transaction times. With Sidechain, you pay a much smaller part of what you pay for the roll-up, but you have to accept less security.
So which one is better? There is no clear answer to this question. They can all be good at certain use cases and complement each other and contribute to a very useful ecosystem. Going at altar speed saves you time, but it is also more likely to have an accident than at normal speed.
For example, a social network reputation system requires very high transaction throughput, extremely low fees, but may not require the highest level of security as it is not a critical part of the infrastructure. In this case, the loss of security can be worth the performance gain.
On the other hand, storing a country’s treasury on blockchain requires the highest level of security and is well worth the compromise, especially if lightning-fast transactions are not required.
Developers are constantly testing and checking how each building block can fit into the entire network. Also, think about scalability as there can be solutions that are scalable for many different use cases in different industries.
Polygon is a framework for building Ethereum-compatible blockchain scaling solutions. Polygon Network is a PoS sidechain that is widely used due to its fast transactions, low cost, and EVM compatibility.
Polygon aims to offer more scalable solutions in the future, including zk Rollup, Optimistic Rollup and Standalone Blockchain, which will help create a more dynamic and connected Layer 2 ecosystem for Ethereum.
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