Blockchain technology has revolutionized the way we think about data and transactions. However, a blockchain can only possess two of the three main features crucial to its success: decentralization, security, and scalability. For instance, prioritizing security and decentralization usually results in reduced scalability. Ethereum, while being secure and decentralized, needed to address its scalability issues. As a solution, Layer-2 blockchains, such as "rollup" scaling technology, emerged to simplify complex transactions and decrease the congestion of the Ethereum network.
One of the most preferred Layer-2 scaling technologies for the Ethereum ecosystem is Fuel Network. Fuel Network is an optimistic rollup that was developed by Fuel Labs, with Fuel V1 being published in late 2020. Its aim is to transform the first layer of Ethereum's monolithic structure into a modular execution layer that provides increased control and flexibility, enabling scalability and optimized performance.
Fuel operates on a modular structure, making it the quickest modular execution layer with a parallel processing execution model. It has its own virtual machine called FuelVM, inspired by EVM, Solana, WASM, Bitcoin, and Cosmos; and utilizes a Rust-based programming language called Sway for developing smart contracts.
Fuel offers numerous development tools, with three prominent ones being Sway Language, Rust SDK, and TypeScript SDK. Sway is used to develop smart contracts, Rust SDK is for compiling, publishing, and testing the contracts written with Sway, and TypeScript SDK allows interaction with contracts, listing transactions, and balances.
There are four different types of programs created with Sway: contracts, predicates, scripts, and libraries. A contract is a program consisting of bytecode deployed to the blockchain, while a predicate returns a boolean value without accessing contract data. A script is a bytecode that tasks run on-chain, and libraries enable common functionality programs.
While the bytecode generated from high-level programming languages might be difficult for humans to understand, they are compiled and transformed into machine code, which is a language a computer can comprehend. Contracts, unlike scripts and predicates, can be called again and contain a state, making them similar to a deployed API with a database.
In conclusion, Fuel Network has revolutionized blockchain technology by offering an optimistic rollup that prioritizes its scalability. Its modular structure and FuelVM make it stand out among Ethereum scaling technologies. The Sway Language, Rust SDK, and TypeScript SDK offer numerous development tools. Contracts, scripts, predicates, and libraries are the four different types of programs created with Sway, generating bytecode that can be interpreted differently by computers of varying architectures.