Polkadot, enabling custom side-chains to connect with public blockchains, released a roadmap outlining the next steps in their para chain rollout. Parachains facilitate the vision of Polkadot’s scalable multi-chain architecture enabled by on-chain governance.
The rollout coincides with its DOT token soaring above $30, setting an all-time high for the crypto as Polkadot announces it’s in the first of three stages prior to the live network.
DOT’s price surge means the cryptocurrency now sits as the fourth biggest based on total market capitalization, according to CoinGecko data. Passing Cardano (ADA), Polkadot’s market capitalization rests roughly $4 billion behind Tether (USDT).
Speculation was Polkadot would enable para chain slot auctions in the first few months of 2020 after Bithumb Global announced the launch of Clover, launching as a para chain and powered by DOT technology, in October 2020.
“We expect to integrate into the Polkadot network in Q1 2021” Clover CEO Chris Li indicated at the time. Li explained Polkadot support was critical for Clover’s plans for a custom blockchain as Bithumb had previous chain creation work that had failed.
The released rollout plan marks the first time the para chain timeline has been seen in order.
Polkadot indicates they are still in the Rococo phase of testing. Launched on August 4th, 2020, the Rococo test net is designed to test its inter-shard communication protocols. The launch of Rococo was a step towards the project’s vision of implementing Cross-Chain Message Passing and avoiding the use of the relay chain to forward messages.
Once the code is approved, para chain teams will be able to test interaction with other chains. According to Polkadot, voting to enable para chains and slot auctions via Kusama will be submitted once the code is audited and benchmarked.
The protocol notes a new auction will commence “roughly every two weeks” on Kusama and Polkadot. The winning para chain will be deployed to the network at the start of its lease period. Auctions continue on a rolling basis as slots open and old leases expire.
Slot leases are allocated via non-permissioned candle auctions. According to Polkadot, para chain slot auctions will have a known open phase and be retroactively determined to have ended in the past, rather than using a random number to decide the opening phase duration.
The scalable Kusama network will serve as an “additional proving ground for para chains, allowing the community to observe network effects and conduct further testing and optimizations.”
Polkadot writes in the announcement how community members will enable and deploy para chains and begin Polkadot slot auctions once para chains run smoothly on Kusama.
Once para chains are live on Polkadot, the project considers the network’s launch official “according to its original vision and design.” Further upgrades will be enabled by network governance, placing the future of Polkadot “up to the community.”