Tackling Pain-Points with Optimistic Rollups

Jeremy Clark

Optimistic rollups like Arbitrum and Optimism are in wide use today as an opt-in scalability overlay (L2s) for blockchains like Ethereum. Two practical pain-points exist for users of optimistic rollups: 1. withdrawing ETH takes 7 days (a “withdrawal window”) to allow disputes before finalizing, and 2. withdrawing ETH to L1 requires the user to first have ETH on L1 to pay gas fees. Here, Jeremy Clark (Concordia) proposes methods for sidestepping those pain-points. His solution involves making withdrawals (“exits”) tradeable before they are finalized so they can be bought and sold for ETH that is already finalized on Ethereum. He proposes prediction markets to ensure exits and considers how tradeable exits should be priced. He implements and tests the changes in the bridge/outbox of Arbitrum Nitro, the most used L2. Anyone on L1 (users or contracts) can safely accept withdrawn tokens while the dispute period is still open despite having no knowledge of what is happening on L2. In collaboration with: M. Moosavi (OffchainLabs/Concordia), M. Salehi (OffchainLabs), D. Goldman (OffchainLabs).

About the speaker

Jeremy is an associate professor at the Concordia Institute for Information Systems Engineering. He holds the NSERC/Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton/Catallaxy Industrial Research Chair in Blockchain Technologies. He earned his PhD from the University of Waterloo, where his gold medal dissertation was on designing and deploying secure voting systems, including Scantegrity, the first cryptographically verifiable system used in a public sector election. He wrote one of the earliest academic papers on Bitcoin, completed several research projects in the area, and contributed to the first textbook. He has also worked with several municipalities on voting technology and testified to both the Canadian Senate and House finance committees on Bitcoin. More: pulpspy.com

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