IOHK Launches 2 New Tools for Smart Contract Development

IOHK, the academic cryptocurrency and blockchain development company behind Cardano, has announced the launch of 2 new smart contract tools for the Cardano blockchain.

Reportedly, the tools named Plutus and Marlowe are powerful and are in test format. Though not fully decentralized, Cardano’s mainnet is accessible to individuals, businesses, and academia who can now prepare blockchain contracts that will run on the Cardano blockchain when ready.

The Plutus Smart Contract Tool

Plutus will aid developers in the development of smart contracts for Cardano by providing a general purpose programming language and tools tailored to Cardano’s blockchain.

IOHK scientists and engineers developed the programming language that is Plutus by manipulating parts of the Haskell programming language of Cardano. The result is a strictly typed pure functional programming language used for defining smart contracts in Cardano.

To encourage developers to develop smart contracts using Plutus, IOHK provides an easy-to-use development and testing environment called the Plutus Playground. The testing environment puts the Pluto smart contracts on a novel blockchain emulator. Therefore, the smart contracts being tested are ready for deployment on the Cardano blockchain itself.

The Marlowe Smart Contract Tool

This tool is primarily for non-programmers as it provides a simple way to generate code automatically and create software products without programming it yourself.

The Marlowe tool will be perfect for professionals in the finance industry as they need no programming language to implement financial contracts on the blockchain. The tool is easy to use and comes with its own web-based testing environment named Meadow.

Important Developments for Cardano and the Blockchain Industry

According to Charles Hoskinson, the CEO and co-founder of IOHK who also previously worked on Ethereum, it is important not to understate the Plutus and Marlowe smart contract tools.

As previously reported, he explained their sophistication and importance:

We’re really excited to release testbeds of Plutus and Marlowe so developers, finance professionals, and academics can test how they can use smart contracts on Cardano. Both technologies are a major step forward for the blockchain industry. They have been rigorously designed by a team of leading experts in programming language design, with the aim of reducing the kinds of software bugs that have led to huge losses totaling hundreds of millions of dollars.

Philip Wadler, the area leader for programming languages at IOHK, pronounced IOHK’s excellence in the development of Cardano’s programming language.

According to Wadler, IOHK is a unique and special cryptocurrency firm as they are the most dedicated firm for supporting development through peer-reviewed research and are consistent with their programming language.

He praised IOHK for their continuous and rapid development of the functional Haskell programming language and compared the likes of this matter with Ethereum:

Programming Ethereum requires coding in two languages, Solidity for the on-chain code and Javascript for the off-chain parts, and other systems suffer a similar split, Plutus is the only system that provides an integrated language for both, based on Haskell. Its core language for on-chain code has been kept extremely simple to make it future-proof and so it supports verification.

Final Thoughts

Looking at the viewpoints of Hoskinson and Wadler, Cardano’s take on programming and the development of smart contracts is something to be excited about.

When Cardano’s mainnet becomes decentralized with the Shelly release in 2019, Plutus and Marlowe will see that smart contracts for real-world applications are running on the Cardano blockchain.

Cardano has big goals for the future of blockchain and smart contract development, and with Plutus and Marlowe at the core of the project, we can expect Cardano to have very strong future developments.

After all, IOHK’s strategy of focusing on the development of code and smart contracts for the Cardano blockchain outweighs a strategy that includes rushing things to market to see a rise in price.

What do you think about IOHK’s take on Cardano’s extensive and careful development? Will the project be able to catch up to Ethereum or is it too late? Let us know what you think in the comment section below.

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