Avail, Data Availability Solution to Rival Celestia, Unveils 'Incentivized Testnet'

The announcement comes as Celestia's recent launch and airdrop has kindled interest in "modular" blockchain projects that can relieve the burden on primary networks like Ethereum.

AccessTimeIconNov 7, 2023 at 4:00 p.m. UTC
Updated Apr 9, 2024 at 11:01 p.m. UTC

Avail, a modular blockchain "data availability" solution to rival the recently launched Celestia, said a new test network will come with incentives for validators and other operators to try to find flaws in the underlying programming.

The project is "inviting validators and light client operators – the titans who guard Avail’s network – to test, validate and operate, helping us battle-test our code base, refine our infrastructure, vet our operational readiness," according to a press release.

In blockchain terminology, a "light client" is software application that allows users to interact with the network without having to download the entire blockchain data – so it can be done on smaller devices with less memory and computational power.

These light clients are a key user segment for data availability solutions like Avail and Celestia, which aim to relieve primary blockchain networks like Ethereum of the extra load of having to constantly field queries for data on historical transactions. That task is expected to grow more burdensome as Ethereum's network of affiliated "layer-2" networks expands, ostensibly producing reams of data that need to be stored and accessed.

Avail, spun out of Polygon in March and led by Polygon co-founder Anurag Arjun, has released test networks this year in anticipation of its main launch, expected in early 2024.

The new incentive program marks "a significant stride toward Mainnet," the company said.

Under Avail's new "gamified" incentive plan, called "Clash of Nodes," participants can earn rewards from completing quests. Those include consistently and correctly validating the chain, helping to simulate "disaster scenarios," authoring as many blocks as possible and staking, Avail said.

The goal is to encourage users and developers to "test every angle" and try to “break the network” by sending vast amounts of data, according to the press release.


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Bradley Keoun

Bradley Keoun is the managing editor of CoinDesk's Tech & Protocols team. He owns less than $1,000 each of several cryptocurrencies.