The Roll-App Thesis?

I found this tweet pretty interesting — mostly because it highlights how we coalesce around similar ideas inside of crypto.

The collective “Cosmos ecosystem” backs the idea of appchains and giving apps full control over all network parameters by essentially living natively in its own chain. IBC is what enables seamless interactions between these chains, so as to not limit user activity to a single chain or force each chain to create its own ecosystem. Despite this, we do see apps built on top of appchains, but that’s a bit irrelevant to this discussion.

When I first heard about rollups and what they can do for Ethereum scalability, my mind immediately wandered to the appchain thesis. You can have multiple rollups, or roll-apps, that are focused on something specific and utilize Ethereum’s security. Aevo is one example of this, acting as a roll-app that is focused on being a premier on-chain derivatives platform.

Aevo can publish its transaction history (calldata) to Ethereum and guarantee finality once that is published. It can also utilize Ethereum as a data availability layer (granular evidence of transactional history) in the event of any transactional dispute. There’s no need to bootstrap security, the direct fee market for transaction execution is isolated (not shared between 1000s of apps), and capital is composable with Ethereum/EVM chains.

Bridges are one of the main drawbacks here and where IBC probably reigns supreme. Bridges are still very susceptible to technical and economic exploits, leading to a lack of confidence in sustainably using many of these solutions. One of the greater benefits with roll-apps is the ability to easily move capital around the “EVM ecosystem” and move from one platform to another.

As the tech and economic sturdiness of bridges improve, I agree with Ryan Beckermans that we will likely see hundreds of rollups emerge. EIP-4844, or proto-danksharding, also paves the way for this by establishing a separate fee market on Ethereum for “data blobs” that enable cheaper data availability for rollups.

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I think this is pretty spot on. But you're right, bridges are a huge unknown at the moment and add a lot of risk to an L2. One area I have been curious about is whether any team is going to leverage BTC inscriptions as a DA layer for their own rollup/BTC app chain. I know Stacks sort of does it, but it would be intersting to see what others are building...if anything

Will try to answer as best as I can given i have a smol brain

Leaving inscriptions aside, the surface-level logical conclusions you come to when thinking about Bitcoin as a DA layer for validity proofs (ZK rollups) is that the costs are pretty high

But I remember coming across a snippet from a Twitter space a while back where John Light, who has spent a ton of time exploring rollups on Bitcoin, said he actually thinks Bitcoin could serve as a strong DA layer for validity proofs

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I think the ultimate thesis of this is that Bitcoin stops being a consumer-facing layer and becomes the ultimate DA layer, but i am unsure of how viable this is

what makes Bitcoin a potentially more attractive DA layer than others?

It's a very subjective viewpoint tbh. Like Gutz said, many believe the nature of PoW networks offers stronger security guarantees.

My personal viewpoint is different. Ethereum, as the largest network by organic security budget, would be my pick at the moment for the most secure DA layer

Security most likely imo. Although PoS chains are secure, Bitcoin is still probably the most secure of them all given their hash.