BLOG April 15, 2021
March was an eventful month for Neo, with the reveal of the N3 brand, the launch of a new neo.org website, and the release of Neo N3 RC1 TestNet.
N3 is the version brand for Neo 3.0. It allows us to market our major releases to developers, without interrupting the regular user’s relationship with Neo’s core identity. We have also started referring to 2.x (the current Neo blockchain) as Neo Legacy to clearly communicate to users that it is being superseded and will not receive further updates in the future.
Following the N3 reveal, we were overjoyed to release the Neo N3 RC1 TestNet - the first official N3 TestNet. This first release candidate version includes the integration of NeoFS into the oracle modules for the first time, alongside state root services and other new features. Neo’s global community also did a fantastic job keeping in lockstep with core protocol development, with RC1 compatibility immediately announced for almost all major projects, including the Neo Blockchain Toolkit, NeoGo, the Neo Python Suite, Neow3j, and more.
To reflect the new version brand and celebrate the TestNet release, we also launched a new website with updated information on Neo and N3. Visitors can take a tour of all the features found in N3, and learn more about ecosystem support opportunities, Neo’s mission, its global communities, and more. Further updates will be made in the near future to provide information on governance participation and token migration.
Moving forward, a checklist has been opened for Neo N3 release candidate two, as we continue along our path to the Neo N3 MainNet. A hackathon event will soon be launched to allow developers to compete for prizes and mentorship as they familiarise themselves with Neo’s new complete blockchain development platform.
March saw the release of Neo N3 RC1 and its TestNet. The new version included most of the new functionality for N3, including the name service and support for NeoFS. The update also fixed bugs with the state service and moved consensus-related settings such as MaxTransactionsPerBlock and MaxBlockSize to the DBFT Plugin. Aside from assorted other optimizations, the RC1 release also added two new opcodes to the Neo contract system, POW and SQRT.
The most notable improvements in this version can be found below:
State Root Updating
Building on from the Preview releases, the core development team has been adding new features to the state root service. P2P functionality has been added, including the ExtensiblePayload to carry signatures. Several bugs have been fixed, including faulty logic where the state root witness could be null, a network magic number check before enabling state root console commands, a hash calculation logic fix, and others.
Accomplishing NeoFS API & Integrating NeoFS into Oracle Module
The team has successfully completed neofs-api-csharp and integrated it into the N3 oracle module, allowing C# nodes to easily interact with NeoFS. The master nodes used in the NeoFS RC1 test network are operated by Neo SPCC using NeoGo.
Adding POW and SQRT Opcode
The additions of the POW and SQRT opcodes are used to calculate the power and square root of a value respectively. Useful for many contracts, such as automated market makers, the new opcodes are intended to simplify the development of contracts that depend on these functions. Necessary logic changes to implement them across the Neo core, virtual machine, and .NET devpack have all been completed.
Other miscellaneous improvements
Removal of singletons from neo-core
Moving some settings from Policy Contract to DBFT Plugin
Allow plugins to work with multiple NeoSystems
Native contract update history implemented
Adjustments to some system call fees in order to standardize the fee format
CpuFee and StorageFee differentiated in order to assist fee calculations
At this time, the team is preparing a task collection checklist for N3 RC2. The checklist will be frozen in mid April with the intention to release by the end of the month. Subsequently, the RC2 TestNet will be set up at the beginning of May. This is hoped to be the last RC version before the N3 MainNet release, which is planned for release around June.
Infrastructure and Tools Development
Implemented the redesigned asset flow as proposed in FIP#2 and enabled migration for related Flamingo assets held by existing users.
Achieved N3 RC1-compatibility in neon.js, Dora, Boa, and began derisking governance workflows for future N3 versions of Neon wallet.
Rolled out Preview5 support for NEO•ONE node and began working on N3-compatible updates across its node, compiler, and other tools.
Released neow3j v3.8.0 to bring its Java SDK, compiler, and devpack up to date with N3 RC1 alongside other optimizations.
Launched an RC1-compatible version of the NeoLine mobile and Chrome extension wallets, and optimized a new NeoTube release for the TestNet.
Published NeoGo for Preview5 and implemented basic income settlement, storage node garbage collection, and CDN cache invalidation in NeoFS.
Added RC1 support to Neo Blockchain Toolkit with new versions of Express, Visual DevTracker, and Smart Contract Debugger, and published new step-by-step tutorials.
Developed new fuzzing tools for critical N3 component testing and continued progressing on its security audit for the RC1 node.
Flamingo Finance by NGD
Following the approval of community members, the Flamingo team implemented the redesigned asset flow as proposed in FIP #2. Migration of affected assets opened on the website after the update, allowing existing users to migrate their WBTC, WETH, and USDT-based assets to their new variants. New users could use the platform directly.
NeoGo by Neo SPCC
In March, Neo SPCC published an RC1-compatible release of NeoGo including the state validation service and NeoFS support for oracles. The update added support for Go 1.16 and various documentation improvements, including a smart contract workshop. Neo-bench was also updated for N3 RC1 compatibility, allowing node performance to be tested.
Explorer & Monitor
Dora by COZ
Dora received considerable attention from COZ’s applications and special projects teams in March. N3 support was released alongside Neo Legacy, demonstrating the multi-chain features of the platform for the first time. The team also completed a revision of the node monitor tool and implemented a replica of the Neoscan endpoints to ease its end-of-life transition. Additional endpoints and websockets support have also been integrated to improve tool performance.
NeoTube by NEXT
The NeoTube explorer has been updated with full N3 RC1 compatibility. A bug causing empty block information pages has also been fixed by the team.
Smart Contract Compiler
Boa by COZ
The Boa team at COZ released N3 support in its Python compiler in March. Accompanying the various changes required for code compatibility are several new features, including the in operator, user-defined storage contexts, and type casting to help with storage deserialization.
A new automated market maker (AMM) contract example was also created by the team as a reference for Python developers looking to write contracts for N3.
Neon.js by COZ
Mamba by COZ
In March, COZ focused on code alignment with RC1 as it approached a TestNet-compatible release for Mamba. Progress was made on wallet support, chain state, and overall performance. The team expects to release a new version in the near future.
Smart Contract & dApp framework
neow3j by AxLabs
AxLabs released a new N3 RC1-compatible version of neow3j in March. V3.8.0 brings the SDK, devpack, and compiler up to date with the latest core code, and includes improvements for the API used to access NeoVM stack items alongside other convenient changes. The team also overhauled all its documentation, tutorials, and examples with N3 RC1 compatibility, paving the way for Java development with the new Neo TestNet.
NEO•ONE by NEO Tracker
In March, the NEO Tracker team published NEO•ONE node-related packages which are compatible with Preview5. The implementation is able to provide all basic node functionality on Preview5 networks, including blockchain storage and RPC services. The team is now working on the RC1 version. The node update is almost completed, and significant progress has been made on the compiler and client packages.
Attention is also being given to developer resources; a recent update to the website corrected errors in the framework’s Neo2 docs and provided new guides for using NEO•ONE and its smart contract mixins.
Neo Blockchain Toolkit by NGD Enterprise
The NGD Enterprise team released N3 RC1 support in the various tools for the Neo Blockchain Toolkit in March. New versions of Neo Express, the Smart Contract Debugger, and Visual DevTracker enabled developers to build with both N3 and Neo Legacy.
New step-by-step tutorials and video quick start guides were also released, which are available at ngdenterprise.com/neo-tutorials.
Neon by COZ
In March, COZ focused on aligning its desktop and mobile wallets for integration. A new deep linking feature and an interface in the desktop wallet will improve the onboarding experience for mobile wallet users. The team is also working on mnemonic imports for the mobile wallet, and expects to launch the open beta following new version releases in the near future.
Additionally, COZ has spent time exploring the governance workflows that will be used on N3, preparing for their implementation in the wallet.
Neoline by NEXT
NEXT updated its mobile wallet versions for Android and iOS, v2.8.0 and v2.6.4(54) respectively. These are now compatible with N3 RC1. The chrome extension wallet was also updated with RC1 support and fixes for the problem with the avatar display.
O3 Wallet by O3 Labs
In March, the team integrated a number of services and projects into the wallet. Support for Wallet Connect and ParaSwap integration into the mobile wallet provides new functionality to users, and the team has entered a collaborative partnership with PolyNetwork to build its own exchange aggregation platform, O3 Swap.
NeoFS by Neo SPCC
Neo SPCC maintained a strong focus on NeoFS in March. Updates include RC1 support, a refactored Go API library, performance fixes, and an updated governance scheme.
For the side services, the team added the CDN cache invalidator into the CDN dev env, began removing SDK bindings from the HTTP gate, and finished work on object flows and payload types in the NeoFS loader.
Code audit from Red4Sec
Red4Sec continued its ongoing security audit of the N3 codebase through March. Particular attention was given to an audit for the recent RC1 implementation, which is nearing completion. The team also designed new fuzzing tests for critical N3 components, with executions showing notable improvements.
Marketing and Operations
Mar. 3 - Korn W from the Supernova community participated in an AMA hosted by NGD EcoGrowth’s Nikkor with the theme of "Supernova Universe, the first algorithmic stablecoin to anchor NEO.”
Mar. 17 - NGD revealed N3 as the new brand for the latest version of the Neo blockchain. It embodies many of the same characteristics as the software it represents: Bold, refined, simple, and powerful. Meanwhile, the current Neo 2.x version has been renamed “Neo Legacy” in order to make a clear distinction between networks.
Mar. 25 - Neo released an article titled "All-in-one, All in Neo," which introduced the features and benefits of N3.
Mar. 25 - The Neo RC1 N3 TestNet was launched, bringing a complete blockchain development experience. NGD also released Neo’s new official website at neo.org.
Mar. 26 - Neo founders Da Hongfei and Erik Zhang participated in an AMA on WeChat to introduce the development status of Neo N3 and outline the roadmap for the future.
Mar. 29 - Da Hongfei and Erik Zhang held an AMA session on the Neo Reddit to answer questions from the community regarding N3 and Neo’s roadmap.
Mar. 31 - PAnews invited Da Hongfei to share his opinions about "Neo N3's new voyage, how to start a brand new chapter of a public chain.”
nDapp.org was redesigned and relaunched by Neo News Today with an updated design and new features for exploring network activity. The revamped nDapp includes a curated list of projects with active smart contracts on the Neo Legacy MainNet. The new platform will support N3 upon MainNet launch.
The GhostMarket NFT marketplace launched several new auction types including classic auctions, reverse auctions, and Dutch auctions. GhostMarket also released guides for creators and collectors explaining how to participate on the platform.
Nash launched season three of the Nash League trading competition and achieved an all time high in daily trading volume of approximately US $15.08 million on March 13. It also announced plans to integrate Aave protocol and Avalanche and opened the waitlist for its debit card.
Hashpallate announced it will support the creation and management of Neo NFTs on its cross-chain NFT platform. Hashpalette is a Japanese-based NFT platform centered around digital content such as manga, animation, sports, and music.
Neo Global Development invested in Dora Factory, which will build a DAO-based voting mechanism on Neo N3. Dora Factory’s DAO-as-a-Service infrastructure enables developers to build on-chain governance features.
NEO will be one of the first cryptocurrencies supported in the upcoming DigiFinex debit card. The card will allow users to pay for goods and services with NEO via UnionPay, the world’s largest PIN-network.
TranslateMe added Tamil and Portuguese to its commercial API and currently supports 7 languages. TranslateMe’s MVP app has been downloaded over 1 million times on the Android Market.
O3 Labs announced plans to launch O3 Swap, a cross-chain aggregation protocol supporting NEO, ETH, HECO, and BSC. O3 Labs also added support for Polkadot and Huobi EcoChain into its wallet and integrated with Matcha DEX.
Switcheo passed several TradeHub improvement proposals. LP rewards were extended and reward weights modified, while a final call was enabled for SWH tokens holders who missed the initial swap to SWTH to complete the migration. Switcheo also launched a new liquidity mining pool on Pancake Swap.