Rollups have emerged as the leading solution for scaling decentralized networks. As we look towards the future, it becomes increasingly evident that the Ethereum ecosystem will host numerous rollups, each serving different purposes. Some may be application-specific, some may be sector-specific, and others will be generalized permissionless EVM networks as we know them today. However, to realize the potential of these individual rollups and ensure their seamless integration, inter-rollup communication and bridging are paramount.
Existing rollups are fundamentally siloed in their design — bridging and messaging is often expensive, risky, and slow. This lack of inter-rollup communication fragments liquidity, user experience, and restricts the benefits of growing the rollup ecosystem horizontally.
In this article, we will delve into the significance of seamless inter-rollup communication and explore how Layer N together with Hyperlane empower developers and users alike in composing applications and transferring assets across rollups.
The Importance of Inter-Rollup Connectivity
Seamless inter-rollup communication acts as messaging highways that enable interoperability between rollups. It allows developers to compose applications across multiple rollups, leveraging the unique features and capabilities offered by each. For example, developers on a general purpose EVM rollup can tap into the deep liquidity of a hyper-optimized DEX rollup. This composability enables developers to design applications that are not limited by the constraints of a single rollup, opening up a wide range of possibilities for creating innovative solutions.
Similarly, simple inter-rollup bridging plays a vital role in enabling users to seamlessly move assets from one rollup to another. In a future where we have a game-specific rollup, and a public EVM rollup, users may want to instantly use their game assets in another application deployed to the public EVM rollup. Users should be able to bridge between rollups with minimal friction and costs while preserving security. This fluidity in asset transfer enhances user experience and expands the possibilities of utilizing assets across various rollups.
Securing Inter-Rollup Communications
In a modular future, having modular security frameworks that are customized for each rollup is crucial. For instance, under a shared sequencer set, inter-rollup messaging can inherit the security of the shared sequencers, while rollups outside of the sequencer set can choose to have an external committee of validators ensuring message legitimacy. In fact, a security model securing connectivity between a group of rollups, such as a Hyperlane ISM can more easily transition into becoming a shared sequencer for those rollups. The operators of each such security module play the role of decentralizing sequencer services. Additionally, Rollups should be able to customize security based on individual messages such that, for example, high value and infrequent messages (e.g. governance) could be verified by a security model that prioritizes safety over latency and gas costs, while lower value and more frequent messages could be verified by a security model that prioritizes latency and gas costs over safety.
Layer N and Hyperlane
Layer N is a scalability layer solving for the need of highly customizable and optimized execution layers. Hyperlane is the first universal interoperability framework. Layer N and Hyperlane are coming together to enable seamless composability for a network of optimized rollups.
Hyperlane allows Layer N’s rollups to talk with one another — enabling a wide variety of use cases and a fundamentally better user experience. Layer N plans to deploy Hyperlane to its EVM and SVM rollups, allowing for applications to read and write state to another rollup. For example, an application deployed natively on the EVM chain can use Layer N’s SVM rollup to make an atomic oracle call (a native smart contract API call only available on Layer N). It can then read the results of that call and use it to update its own internal state.
Furthermore, an application native to Ethereum that wants to deploy on Layer N can integrate with Hyperlane to make its app read values coming from Layer N — leveraging Layer N’s low-latency, high performance, and deep liquidity to make a decision surrounding its core business-logic. Or, in the reverse, an application native to Layer N can ping Ethereum for data and/or leverage it for asset-storage.
Overall, Hyperlane enables existing and future rollups to build highways to one another, rather than existing in siloed environments. As composability is a core tenet of Layer N’s rollup philosophy, combining both technologies results in an end-state that is greater than the sum of its parts and moves Ethereum closer towards a scalable and composable future.
A multi-rollup future is inevitable. Seamless inter-rollup communication and bridging play a pivotal role in unlocking the full potential of this decentralized scalable future. The current state of rollups is far from achieving this reality. Future rollup design should more carefully enable developers to compose applications across rollups and users to transfer assets seamlessly, to foster innovation, enhance user experience, and maximize the benefits provided by each rollup.
About Layer N
Layer N is a novel layer 2 network designed to hyper-scale decentralized finance on Ethereum. Layer N aims to provide performance and user experiences similar to modern financial networks, but fully on-chain and decentralized. Developers can build hyperperformant financial applications leveraging shared liquidity and seamless composability. Layer N is bringing the global financial system to Ethereum.
Hyperlane is the first Permissionless Interoperability layer, enabling anyone to bring the Hyperlane interoperability stack to any blockchain, out-of-the-box. With Hyperlane, developers can build Interchain Applications, apps that abstract away the complexity of interchain interactions and serve users on any connected chain. Additionally, Hyperlane’s modular security stack gives developers the power to customize their interchain security. Hyperlane development is open-source and led by core developers at Abacus Works.