Today, the EOS Community declares independence, stepping into its own destiny. From the verge of dissolution, we have emerged stronger and more united than ever. Where we go from here, is up to us.
“Today is the hard-won culmination of our efforts to secure independence for the EOS blockchain. Thanks to the EOS Block Producers—through their trust, support, and their technical prowess, the ENF has been able to proceed unhindered in our mission to deliver value to the EOS Network. A special thanks to Zack Gall, for having the vision and the courage to step up, and be a part of this journey with me from day one. Thanks to the many dedicated developers and project leaders who rallied together and coordinated this massive feat of engineering, our code is now on solid footing. Thanks to a diverse and resilient community, the momentum we have been steadily building, is now a force to be reckoned with. This is a great victory, but we can’t bask in our own glory for long, we have to keep moving! What becomes of EOS next, is what we make of it.”
Today, we are liberating the code. The code that embodies our collective aspirations for a resilient public blockchain network. We liberate the code, not for a privileged few, but for an open future, built on open-source foundations.
“EOS independence signifies the power of people over the tech. Nothing is impossible, just not done yet. And now we can remove ‘A Community taking over the codebase and taking things into their own hands’, from the list of impossible things.”
Today, we step forward into history, the first of a committed coalition of networks undertaking its migration to the newly forged Antelope Framework. An open framework to unite us all.
“For me personally, this represents a fundamental point whereby we see the full power of a decentralized network and community in action. It reached consensus on wanting a new direction for the way the network was run, and wanted to ensure the development of the technology was aligned with that. Therefore this represents a major milestone for me, both in the governance and maturity of EOS. It’s an incredibly positive series of steps that have the potential to realize the technical prowess of Antelope fully.”
As we take this major step towards self determination as a network, we understand it is only the first step. Yet without this single step, nothing else will be possible.
A tree as great as a man’s embrace springs from a small shoot;
A terrace nine stories high begins with a pile of earth;
A journey of a thousand miles starts under one’s feet.—Tao Te Ching – Lao Tzu – chapter 64
A New—Independent EOS—Against All Odds
By now the story of the EOS community uprising has been told many times. The network that became cognizant of its DAO-ness, reclaimed its sovereignty from a derelict leadership, and empowered a new foundation, forged from its own community. The EOS Network Foundation, that rose to champion the interests of EOS stakeholders and secure the long term viability of the ecosystem. The influx of talent, and the explosion of development that has followed. The formation of multiple public chains into a coalition that share a common codebase, and the leap to Antelope. The miracle of EOS, is the reclamation of its own destiny, against all odds.
“Not since the launch of the EOS network itself have we seen such a display of unity. For EOS to achieve a system-wide consensus upgrade and officially adopt the community-led Leap 3.1 codebase as its source of truth is a truly monumental achievement. The next chapter has begun for the new EOS.”
For a deeper dive into the backstory that led to this, start here:
More retrospectives will surely be written, but the history of these monumental events are fairly well captured here, on the ENF blog itself. If you want the most complete story available at present, simply begin at the beginning.
“All blockchains are only as successful as their communities are cohesive. The EOS community has been through a lot over the past few years, and had it not been for a strong sense of unity while working towards a common, ambitious goal, EOS wouldn’t be where it is today; a blockchain still growing and finding its way forward.”
The EOS Hard Fork—TLDR Version
The original maintainer of the EOSIO code upon which the EOS Network relied, produced EOSIO 2.1 and a release candidate for EOSIO 2.2; however, simply put, the changes introduced in these releases broke several history solutions and were deemed to be overall not beneficial for the many public networks that relied upon the code.
With an EOSIO codebase containing thousands of unresolved issues and all but abandoned by the original maintainer; EOS community engineers, led by the ENF, rallied and forked the stable EOSIO 2.0 code repository into a new codebase which was then improved upon to eventually create Leap 3.1, the C++ implementation of the new Antelope protocol. Improvements in Leap 3.1 include several useful features backported by OCI from EOSIO 2.1 and EOSIO 2.2 but also includes several new features including transaction lifecycle improvements, upgraded crypto primitives that power EVM-related cryptography functions, block and SHiP pruning, and more.
“The critical resource of any blockchain network is its community. Over the long term, protocols and code can radically change and in fact should change to meet the needs of the community they serve. Whenever a contentious hard fork occurs in some blockchain community which splits the core token of the community, it is the community that gives value predominantly to the token of one branch of the split over the token of the other. But the community does still critically depend on the proper functioning of the code that underpins the blockchain and makes the coordination and consensus of the community feasible.
For too long, the EOS Network had depended on a single unmotivated for-(their-own-)profit company to maintain and improve its core blockchain code and through that dependence the EOS Community has passed up several opportunities to achieve a brighter future for the Network and themselves. The Community has now accepted that continuing with that approach leads to nowhere and in the last year has come together to sever that unhealthy dependence and instead take control over their own future. A key part of that independence is ensuring the core blockchain code continues to improve in alignment with the interests of the EOS Community, which the Community has now achieved through the means of the EOS Network Foundation.
The release of the Leap 3.1 software, and in particular the activation of the new Antelope protocol features introduced in Leap 3.1 on the EOS Network blockchain, marks an important milestone in this independence in which the Community demonstrates to the world that the EOS Network now runs on code maintained by the EOS Network Foundation on behalf of the EOS Community.”
On Wednesday, September 21, 2022, EOS block producers executed a coordinated hard fork to Leap 3.1. Anyone running a node should now have upgraded their nodes to continue syncing with the network. This is the second hard fork, or in the case of EOS, a non-contentious consensus upgrade, activating new features that are not backwards compatible with previous versions of the code.
Daniel Keyes gives a great high-level summary here:
“EOS independence is significant because it marks a long-desired moment of alignment between EOS ecosystem growth drivers and EOS community members. For far too long, the EOS ecosystem suffered due to a lack of leadership, which the ENF has stepped in and fulfilled in a professional and passionate manner. The success and failure of EOS hinges on all of us in the community now, and we have the tools we need to get to work. Thanks to all who have stuck it out and done their best to contribute, despite the odds and at some points, low morale. We are all stronger for having been through those hard times.
I am excited to be a part of the next phase of EOS, and to see it prosper on the efforts of our newly found Antelope herd. It’s a dream to see a legitimate multi-chain strategy rise; we are stronger together!”
Today, We Think Forward, and Look to the Future
EOS Independence is a choice. It’s not a state, but a perennial act of becoming. The blockchain industry never stands still, and neither can we. With our further resolve to expand DAO tooling and infrastructure, in our work to unite multiple chains through Trustless IBC, through our efforts to develop the most performant EVM to date, by our massive partnership with industry leading engineers, our insistence on developing a DeFi focused liquidity incentive and rewards program, and renewed efforts to expand engagement through community ideathons and hackathons, we are advancing on several fronts simultaneously, and the pace is not slowing.
A Community of Champions
“EOS Independence Day is the day the EOS community celebrates the community’s victory on breaking free from its past constraints and limitations which initiated a change of focus towards true community goals including collaboration, open-source and ensuring the technology is ready to provide more secure & affordable services directly to the people, by the people. In time, EOS will be a thriving ecosystem of P2P services bypassing most intermediaries and increasing our world’s efficiency, security, and integrity.”
None of our efforts would be possible without an extensive, united community. The EOS community is unlike any other in the blockchain space. Battle-hardened, big-hearted champions who have persevered against all odds.
We close with some additional quotes from members of the community who responded to our question, “what does EOS Independence mean to you?” To the rest of you who answered, in an effort to keep this somewhat brief, your words will yet grace future articles or social posts from the ENF. Thank you for your contributions!
It’s been an incredible voyage, and we’re just getting started! We are honoured by the opportunity to serve the EOS community, to see it grow and evolve over time. There’s still much work ahead. Let’s go together! Go EOS!
—Yves La Rose and Zack Gall
“For me, EOS independence means letting go of old things, eliminating differences, uniting common interests and leaping ahead. It means fighting to help bring our favorite technology to the forefront of the crypto industry.”
“As we stand before a significant fork, I’m grateful for the ability to do so. Change is constant, but some human constructs are deliberately fixed. It’s encouraging to have tools to better react to change. What’s changing for EOS is leadership. Our community is being fueled. From here, we can grow EOS without being encumbered by bureaucracy. EOS Independence means a fresh start. It’s significant because EOS may not get another one. We are ready.”
“For me, EOS Independence means the start of a new era of self-determination, a strengthening from the core and a wonderful chance to lift the old burdens and reliances recreating the future through the virtue and strength of the community.”
The EOS Network is a 3rd generation blockchain platform powered by the EOS VM, a low-latency, highly performant, and extensible WebAssembly engine for deterministic execution of near feeless transactions; purpose-built for enabling optimal web3 user and developer experiences. EOS is the flagship blockchain and financial center of the Antelope framework, serving as the driving force behind multi-chain collaboration and public goods funding for tools and infrastructure through the EOS Network Foundation (ENF).
EOS Network Foundation
The EOS Network Foundation (ENF) was forged through a vision for a prosperous and decentralized future. Through our key stakeholder engagement, community programs, ecosystem funding, and support of an open technology ecosystem, the ENF is transforming Web3. Founded in 2021, the ENF is the hub for EOS Network, a leading open source platform with a suite of stable frameworks, tools, and libraries for blockchain deployments. Together, we are bringing innovations that our community builds and are committed to a stronger future for all.