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Ergo Development Roadmap & History#

Ergo is a blockchain platform designed to provide a secure, efficient, and user-friendly environment for the development of decentralized applications and financial tools. This roadmap outlines the key milestones and objectives for the development and growth of the Ergo ecosystem.


Vision & Key Features

Ergo is a cutting-edge smart contract platform that provides secure, accessible, and decentralized financial tools to empower ordinary people. Utilizing a sophisticated scripting language and advanced cryptographic features, Ergo builds on fundamental blockchain principles to transform the concept of Contractual Money.

Ergo aims to establish itself as a mineable digital asset akin to "Digital Gold 2.0," supporting trustless derivatives and dynamic contracts. The development of Ergo’s DeFi ecosystem and the integration of sidechains will broaden the decentralized monetary base and derivative money supply, enhancing financial inclusivity and accessibility worldwide.

Ergo’s commitment to decentralization, fairness, and accessibility is evident in its adoption of the Autolykos Proof-of-Work protocol, which facilitates a user-friendly environment where lightweight clients can interact directly with the blockchain, making Ergo a practical and programmable currency ready for use.

  • eUTXO Model: Allows UTXOs to carry arbitrary data and complex scripts, enabling advanced smart contracts
  • Autolykos PoW Algorithm: ASIC-resistant and designed for fair mining, promoting decentralization
  • Emission Schedule: Ensures a stable and predictable supply of ERG tokens
  • NiPoPoWs (Non-Interactive Proofs of Proof-of-Work): Enables efficient light clients, log-space mining, trustless sidechains, and enhances accessibility and decentralization by allowing mobile SPV clients and lite full nodes
  • ErgoScript: Supports clear and concise smart contract development with Σ-protocols
  • Storage Rent: Mitigates blockchain bloat, incentivizes efficient storage usage, and contributes to long-term economic sustainability
  • Turing-Complete Smart Contracts: Allows for complex on-chain computations and advanced dApp development
  • Long-Term Economic Sustainability: Ensured through storage rent, transaction fees from DeFi, and subpool mining

For more information please see the Why Ergo? section.

General Overarching Ergo Design and Implementation Roadmap
Phase 1: Foundations
  • Start with the basic design of Ergo as digital gold (commodity money).
  • Introduce programmability features including:
    • Crypto contracts
    • Stealth addresses
    • Arbitrarily complex signatures
    • Mixing schemes
  • Position Ergo as a basis for unstoppable, grassroots economies, serving as a decentralized central bank digital currency (CBDC) for the people.
Phase 2: Initial Experiments
  • Conduct initial experiments to test functionality and user engagement.
  • Evaluate the outcomes considering the initial motivations.
Phase 3: Defining Adoption
  • Clarify the term "adoption" as it is often ambiguous in industry discussions.
  • Develop metrics or KPIs to measure adoption success.
Phase 4: Scaling and Optimization
  • Peer-to-peer (P2P) level optimizations and rework.
  • Consider pre-block commitments to transaction ordering (sub-blocks).
  • Aim to increase transactions per second (TPS) while maintaining security. Constraints for Scaling
  • Limitations include requirements for a flat P2P network running on commodity hardware.
  • No use of centralized or "bankster" data centers for scalability.
Phase 5: Offloading Solutions
  • Propose options for offloading transactions to Layer 2 or sidechains, if not already implemented.
  • Introduce "Know Your Assumptions" KYA as a way to explain security in offloading options in a concise and understandable manner.
Phase 6: Convergence
  • Multiple developments in scaling, optimization, and offloading are expected to converge, culminating in a comprehensive solution for widespread adoption.

Summarised from Kushti, 7 Aug, 2023

Who develops Ergo?

Ergo is developed a by a combination of the Ergo Foundation, community developers and the recently launched DevDAO

Ergo Timeline#

2019: Genesis Year
  • Milestones:
    • July 1: Ergo mainnet launched during the "crypto winter"
    • Autumn: Ergo Foundation established
  • Development:
    • First tools and libraries emerged
    • Inaugural crowdfunding using UTXOs and smart contracts
    • Zero-join paper published
    • Multi-stage contracts paper by Amitabh released
    • First smart contract formally verified
2020: Foundation Building
  • Milestones:
    • January 7: Introduction of the Ergo Foundation as a community-driven entity
  • Launches:
    • Ergo Mixer (initially a raw application, later improved by Anon2020)
    • Late August: Oracle pools
    • Zero-knowledge treasury by anon_real
    • Auction House
  • Partnerships: Collaboration with Emurgo for joint research (Oracle Pools, SigmaUSD, headless dApp framework)
  • Listings: CoinEx,
  • Community: Roadmap released and Discord community initiated
2021: Expansion and Recognition
  • Launches:
    • Q1: SigmaUSD launched
  • Ecosystem Growth:
    • Spectrum DEX and DeFi ecosystem development began
    • Autolykos v2 hard fork: opened Ergo to mining pools, improved liquidity and brought many new users into the ecosystem
  • Partnerships and Listings:
    • Collaboration with Jinse, Chinese community expanded to 10,000+ members
    • Listed on KuCoin and Changelly
  • Community Milestones:
    • UTXO Alliance formed
    • Inaugural Ergo Summit and two hackathons
  • Governance and Legal:
    • EIP-27 discussions initiated
    • US Legal Opinion obtained on Ergo's security classification
    • December 19: Ergo Foundation incorporated in Singapore
  • Team Expansion:
    • Joseph Armeanio and Mark Glasgow join Ergo Foundation (Mark replacing Martin S.)
    • November 1: Daniel Friedman (IOHK) appointed Advisor to Ergo Foundation Board
  • Additional Achievements:
    • The EF hired wallet developers to alleviate users' lack of usable wallet options
2022: Technical Advancements
  • Protocol Upgrades:
    • EIP-27 (emission soft-fork) was implemented
    • EIP-37 (difficulty retargeting hard fork) was implemented
  • Ergo was listed on the following exchanges:
    • Indodax
    • Huobi
    • Bittrue
  • Ecosystem Expansion:
  • Community Engagement:
  • Technical Milestone: Node V5 with JITC (Just-In-Time Compilation) was released
  • Team Growth:
    • Warwick (CW), Stacie, and Alison Robson joined as Ergo Foundation Officers
  • Marketing Initiative: An 'open source economy' pitch deck was created and distributed
2023: Ecosystem Flourishing
2024: Future Horizons (In Progress and Planned)
  • Ongoing work to define rules for new releases and research-driven development frameworks
  • Encouragement of new stakeholder organizations within the Ergo ecosystem

  • Milestones:

  • Development Focus:

    • Reference Client:
      • Sub-blocks implementation
      • P2P layer optimization and review
      • Bootstrapping improvements
      • Sidechain implementation modularization
      • Potential RocksDb integration
      • Enhanced testing for indices, scans, and wallet
    • Sigma:
      • Sigma 6.0 implementation and validation context extension research
      • Signature re-checking optimization
      • ErgoScript 2.0
      • EIP-0046: Atomic Chains
      • EIP-0047: Pooled Transaction Inputs
      • MerkleTrees
      • Revisiting formal verification implementation
      • Bulletproofs
      • Exploration of Rust and JavaScript support in addition to ErgoScript
      • Consideration of high-level language support (e.g., Lisp)
      • Improvements to error-checking and debugging tools
      • Revisiting formal verification implementation
    • SDKs:
      • AppKit
      • FleetSDK
      • sigma-rust
        • JIT costing implementation in Sigma-Rust
        • 6.0 features implementation in Sigma-Rust
        • Sigma-Rust-Mini development
      • Sigma.js
    • Libraries & Tooling
    • Mining Ecosystem:
      • Lithos decentralized mining pool infrastructure expected launch by end of 2024
      • Plans for reintroduction of Fair Initial Mining Offerings (FIMOs)
    • Interoperability:
      • Sigma Chains - Revitalizing Proof of Work
        • Implementing sidechains with trustless transfers and various consensus mechanisms (merged mined with ERG, other blockchains, or double merged mined)
        • Expanding Ergo's contractual layer to sidechains, incorporating features like Bulletproofs-based sigma protocols and elevating certain contracts to first-class citizens
        • Experimenting with scalability solutions like sharding on sidechains
        • Utilizing ERG and other tokens on Ergo and sidechains from launch, fostering a rich and diverse DeFi ecosystem
        • Launching existing applications on sidechains, contingent on modifications to the contractual layer
      • Rosen bridge - A hub for cross-chain asset transfers
        • BTC Bridge Launched
        • Plans for bridging with Ethereum and other EVM chains
        • BSC Bridge
        • Expansion of Rosen Bridge to Bitcoin Cash, Nervos, and other UTXO chains
        • Bitcoin Runes layer planned for deployment on Ergo
        • RGB++ protocol deployment in consideration
    • Wallets:
      • Nautilus
        • Manifest v3 rework
      • Light SPV Clients using NiPoPoWs
      • EIP-12 / EIP-20
      • Metamask integration
      • Trustwallet Integration

DeFi Ecosystem#

Each addition to our budding ecosystem helps to create even more trustless collaterral and expands the decentralised monetary base and deriviative money supply.

Decentralized Exchanges#


Lending and Borrowing#

  • SigmaFi (peer-to-peer loans via bonds)
  • Duckpools (lending pools)
    • optionPools
  • EXLE (uncollateralized lending)

Derivatives and Synthetics#


Interoperability and Bridges#

  • Rosen Bridge (two-layered federated bridge)
    • ADA Bridge
    • BTC Bridge
      • Runes Integration
    • EVM Bridge
  • Analog Ergo (atomic swaps)
    • Alpha Live
    • Lightning Swaps
  • Oracle Pools (federated transparent data providing)
  • Trustless Relays

Privacy and Mixing#

  • ErgoMixer (non-interactive, non-custodial mixer)
    • Stealth addresses
  • SigmaJoin
  • Privacy-Preserving Voting

DAOs and Governance#

Gaming and Metaverse#

  • BlitzTCG (trading card game)
  • CyberVerse (metaverse gaming platform)
    • Cyberverse Multiplayer

Miner Tooling#



Developing Digital Gold 2.0 and its Infrastructure

The following is adapted from this post on the R&D DAO for Ergo Core thread.

Vision The Ergo Core Dev DAO envisions Ergo as Digital Gold 2.0, a mineable digital commodity with trustless derivatives and expressive contracts. By building upon Ergo's robust DeFi ecosystem and introducing sidechains, we aim to expand the decentralized monetary base and derivative money supply, creating a more inclusive and accessible financial system for the Ergo community and beyond.

Completed Milestones The Ergo platform, with the support of the Ergo Foundation and community developers, has already made significant strides in developing its infrastructure and DeFi ecosystem. This includes launching basic infrastructure such as wallets and explorers, as well as a wide range of DeFi tools and trustless derivatives, such as:

  • SigmaUSD stablecoin (Djed protocol)
  • Spectrum DEX (AMM-based)
  • ErgoMixer (non-interactive, non-custodial mixer)
  • ErgoAuctionHouse (peer-to-peer auctions)
  • SigmaFi (peer-to-peer loans via bonds)
  • Duckpools (lending pools)
  • ErgoRaffle (decentralized crowdfunding)
  • EXLE (uncollateralized lending)
  • SigmaO (trustless options)
  • HodlCoin (trustless ERG derivative with non-declining price)
  • AuctionCoin (emission via auctions)
  • Oracle Pools (federated transparent data providing)
  • Rosen Bridge (two-layered federated bridge)

These tools collectively contribute to the creation of more trustless collateral through various means such as AuctionCoin, OptionCoin, and fair initial mining offerings. As a result, Ergo's decentralized monetary base and derivative money supply continue to grow. It's worth noting that the entire DeFi ecosystem on Ergo is built upon its unique ErgoTree/ErgoScript contractual layer, also known as Sigma, which provides a secure and flexible foundation for the development of complex financial applications.

Upcoming Milestones Looking ahead, key milestones include:

  • The launch of new DeFi tools such as Paideia, Dexy/Gluon stablecoins, ChainCash, Analog Ergo, and OptionCoin
  • Implementing sidechains with trustless transfers and various consensus mechanisms (merged mined with ERG, other blockchains, or double merged mined)
  • Expanding Ergo's contractual layer to sidechains, incorporating features like Bulletproofs-based sigma protocols and elevating certain contracts to first-class citizens
  • Experimenting with scalability solutions like sharding on sidechains
  • Utilizing ERG and other tokens on Ergo and sidechains from launch, fostering a rich and diverse DeFi ecosystem
  • Launching existing applications on sidechains, contingent on modifications to the contractual layer

By achieving these milestones, the Ergo Core Dev DAO aims to establish Ergo and its Sigma layer as a central hub for UTXO PoW blockchains with powerful smart contract capabilities.

Monetization Strategies for ErgoDevs DAO To ensure the sustainability and growth of the Ergo ecosystem, the ErgoDevs DAO is exploring various monetization strategies, such as:

  • Receiving a percentage of sidechain token emissions, similar to the Ergo Treasury contract
  • Offering consultancy services and support for launching applications on sigma chains

These strategies will help fund ongoing development and foster a thriving community of developers and users around the Ergo platform, in collaboration with the Ergo Foundation and the wider Ergo community.