However, apart from Coordicide, the objective of the IOTA Foundation is to fully optimise the IOTA mainnet pre-Coordicide and offer an enterprise-ready solution to our ecosystem. We have therefore planned for an intermediate update called Chrysalis. This plan was first announced alongside our roadmap, but the scope has since been expanded. This post provides further information on what this upgrade to the IOTA Mainnet entails.
A chrysalis is “the form a caterpillar takes before it emerges from its cocoon as a fully-formed moth or butterfly”. In the context of IOTA, Chrysalis is the mainnet’s intermediate stage before coordicide is complete. To be clear, Chrysalis is separate to the coordicide efforts, and is aimed at improving usability of the current IOTA mainnet prior to coordicide.
Why is this process of adopting major protocol improvements relatively unique to IOTA among permissionless DLTs? The simple answer is the absence of miners. In most permissionless DLTs, the miners’ economic incentives conflict with those of the users of the network. Better throughput and lower latencies can disrupt the fee market miners rely on, and therefore agreeing to upgrade the network may affect their own profitability.
In IOTA, the validators and users are one and the same. There is no stubborn clash of incentives, meaning a much smoother path to network improvements. We will demonstrate this with the upcoming incremental upgrades to the network under Chrysalis.
So what are these incremental upgrades?