The Defiant

Honeypot Challenge: Cartesi’s First Rollup DApp on Ethereum Mainnet


Expanding Ethereum’s Virtual Machine With Cartesi And Testing Rollup Security Infrastructure With The Honeypot Challenge

By: Jeremy Nation

Honeypot Challenge: Cartesi’s First Rollup DApp on Ethereum Mainnet [Sponsored]

Ethereum is an open source blockchain featuring smart contract functionality that uses the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM), where many computers act as nodes to ensure consensus and execute code and confirm network status.

To enhance the capabilities of the EVM, Layer 2 (L2) rollups provide a computational environment that alleviates the pressure on the base layer chains they interface with. Among these L2 solutions, Cartesi distinguishes itself by offering increased computational scalability, equating to more processing power, rather than concentrating solely on data availability.

Cartesi now celebrates the launch of Honeypot, a rollup dApp on Ethereum’s main net, crafted to serve as a gamified developer hacking challenge that evaluates the robustness of Cartesi's infrastructure. Honeypot safeguards real assets, rewarding those skillful enough to breach it.

Ethereum developers are invited to participate in this gamified contest for a shot at a growing pool of 35,000 CTSI, identify flaws, test, and collaboratively enhance Cartesi's security.

EVM’s Limits

Ethereum’s architecture offers a number of robust traits in terms of cryptographic security, immutability, and lack of single points of failure. Unlike traditional networks where a single or stack of servers store and propagate network changes to multiple machines, in Ethereum all the nodes on the network concurrently store, track, and maintain the updated network status.

However Ethereum is not without limitations. It takes roughly 12 seconds, based on network conditions, to update the EVM, and limitations on the computation capacity, or the amount of things that can be updated at a time, presents a bottleneck for Ethereum.

In addition, the primary language for writing smart contacts on the EVM – Solidity – is still relatively young. As a result developers must interact with the EVM using a relatively rudimentary set of tools and inputs.

Addressing these constraints, Cartesi’s Optimistic Rollups enable dApps to perform intricate off-chain computations and deliver verifiable results on-chain without compromising decentralization. Running on top of those rollups is the Cartesi Virtual Machine (CVM), a Linux environment that seamlessly integrates with Web2 tools and libraries previously inaccessible in the context of Web3 development.

Scaling With Cartesi

Cartesi provides a solution for Ethereum developers with application specific rollups that allow computers that participate in the shared EVM network to use their own processors to manage network updates. Cartesi then batches those changes and sends them to Ethereum, vastly expanding the amount of information that can be processed in the amount of time it takes for the network to process blocks.

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Compared to the EVM's native capacity of processing 10 million network changes per block—akin to the computational might of a pocket calculator—Cartesi Rollups enable connected computers to process updates at orders of magnitude higher, accommodating over 3.6 billion updates within the same time to finality.

So, with Cartesi Rollups, it’s possible to maintain a decentralized network on any EVM compatible blockchain while integrating mechanisms that more closely emulate the efficiency and rapid update capabilities characteristic of Web2 server architectures.

Web3 Linux Bridge

Although solidity-based smart contracts offer significant base-layer programmability to dApp developers, the language itself features a very basic lexicon for instructing the machine, which can be restrictive for engineers.

With the Cartesi Virtual Machine, Ethereum developers can design their apps in a Linux environment, vastly expanding the engineering lexicon. This also affords access to a vast array of established tools and libraries that application builders have relied on for years.

Rather than have developers teach the EVM processes already standardized across the previously iterated stack of Web2, Cartesi bridges the gap, affording access to a computing environment where the computer already knows such processes. It lets developers use familiar building blocks in a conventional setting.

Hack and Win

To rigorously stress test the Cartesi Rollup architecture, developers are invited to partake in a collective gamified hacking challenge to identify vulnerabilities and thereby claim a pot of tokens secured within the Honeypot dApp. By engaging in this challenge, participants not only play a crucial role in fortifying Cartesi's infrastructure but also stand a chance to earn rewards for their insights and breakthroughs.

The challenge is simple. Honeypot’s code only allows a designated wallet address to withdraw funds from the dApp. Developers are assigned the task of breaking the code and successfully withdrawing funds in the Honeypot dApp to their own account.

The initial pot of rewards up for grabs in the dApp will be set at 35,000 CTSI which will grow with compounding 8% weekly allocations from the Cartesi Foundation.

Check out the Honeypot challenge by visiting the official launch site to learn more about the contest’s official rules, and get started hacking by referring to the dApp’s Github documentation.

To get more involved in the Cartesi community, check out the project on X, and drop by the project’s official Discord server.