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Proof-of-Stake Blockchain Algorand Now Offers Smart Contract Support

By Mark Lemon – Cryptocurrency Specialist

On Thursday, the Algorand Foundation released an update to the Blockchain's protocol in which smart contracts and decentralised finance features are going to be rolled out. Since its launch in June 2019, Algorand 2.0 is the biggest expansion of the network's capabilities. Before this update, you could not buy crypto native to this chain to power any contracts.

Algorand CEO Steve Kokinos said the following in an interview with Coindesk:

“With this release, new features and simple developer resources enable new use cases and broader adoption of blockchain overall."

The employees of the Blockchain have been hinting at this development for months now. It's the first time Algorand has included support for code-driven smart contracts that cannot only track but also execute the terms of formal agreements over time. This is a similar feature to when you buy Ethereum to power the contracts but more niche in its functionality.

Algorand's ASC smart contracts have backend differences from those contracts that have been pioneered by Blockchain companies such as Ethereum. The reason why this is the case is because Algorand's new in-house programming language known as Transaction Execution Approval Language (TEAL), is non-Turing-complete.

Turing completeness refers to the measure of the programming language that is able to simulate another programming language and also manipulate its own instructions.

While all modern programming languages are Turing-complete, TEAL is a difference-maker as it is a feature and not a bug. This is because the team believe TEAL smart contracts are much safer to write as well as execute despite having limited functionality.

Algorand head of product, Paul Riegle said, “We don’t believe that Turing-complete is necessary for the majority of the use cases. It adds immense attack surface and a potentially steep performance impact.” This is one of the bottleneck issues that the Ether network experiences when you buy Ethereum to power the many different smart contracts on Dapps and for services within the network.

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