Shockwave Alpha Mainnet Upgrade is Complete!

Shockwave Alpha, our inaugural major mainnet upgrade since Supernova's launch in November 2021, is now officially live! This significant milestone introduces new features that solidify Secret Network's position as THE privacy platform for Web 3.

Secret Network
May 11, 2022

Greetings Secret Community!‌‌

It’s been just over six months since the successful deployment of the Supernova upgrade. Shortly after this network improvement, our new Shockwave phase began, with growth and interchain interoperability being crucial goals. Since then, the brilliant engineers at SCRT Labs have been hard at work preparing for Shockwave Alpha – a major mainnet upgrade that dramatically improves network performance, introduces state sync, and primes Secret Network to take full advantage of all IBC has to offer.‌‌

Today we’re proud to share that Shockwave Alpha has officially (and successfully) launched! Our thanks go out to the entire validator community of Secret Network who helped with the stability and security of this upgrade.‌‌

What can users expect from Shockwave Alpha? ‌‌

  • 500-600x speed boosts for certain network events, like NFT mints and airdrops
  • State sync for the CosmWasm directory
  • Interchain accounts

Additionally, Shockwave Alpha slightly changes how we’ve previously conducted network upgrades, our first iteration of a shorter upgrade cycle. That means more high-impact features are released more often.‌‌

What does this mean for Secret?

Shockwave is all about explosive growth, and the Alpha upgrade has several key upgrades that will significantly affect user experience. These are key base-layer network improvements that allow Secret Network developers more creativity than ever before without sacrificing user experience. Here’s what you can expect: ‌‌

Massive performance boosts for certain network events‌‌

Alpha testing has already provided some very promising results for certain network events. We’ve seen 500-600x (yes, really) speed boosts for certain network events like minting SNIP-20 tokens and Secret NFTs while ensuring reduced gas costs.

SCRT Labs has designated specialized querying nodes designed to take the burden off of transaction processing by balancing load responsibility. With Shockwave Alpha launch, we aim to eliminate the days of cross-chain airdrops affecting block times and slowing down the network!

State sync for CosmWasm directory

Previously, node runners needed to manually sync the .compute directory before state syncing‌‌. Shockwave Alpha now streamlines this process, automating the syncing of the .compute directory. This significant quality of life improvement will make running a node easier. Automatic syncing should help satisfy Shockwave’s aim to grow the network, as onboarding and maintaining nodes just became that much easier!

Interchain Accounts‌‌

Introduced in Cosmos’ Theta upgrade, Interchain accounts improve the functionality and interoperability within the IBC ecosystem by allowing for more than simple token transfers between networks.‌‌ If you’re not familiar with IBC, think of it as a standard that allows blockchains to communicate more effectively.

Since the introduction of IBC, some chains have already added Interchain capabilities, enabling interactions with other IBC chains. Shockwave Alpha is our first mainnet upgrade since the global introduction of Interchain accounts, making it the first opportunity for us to add this functionality!

The Supernova upgrade first introduced Secret’s IBC integration, and Shockwave Alpha furthers this match towards interoperability. The adoption of IBC connected Secret Network with blockchains across the Cosmos ecosystem, allowing SCRT to be used in cross-chain Cosmos applications. Now we lay the foundation for activating Interchain accounts, allowing for the most seamless user experience across IBC chains. This addition will eventually extend Secret Network’s unique privacy features to the Cosmos ecosystem.‌‌

Implementing this upgrade keeps Secret users connected to the IBC ecosystem, breaking through the silos that previously limited Interchain activity.

Read the full changelog here:

SecretNetwork/ at master · scrtlabs/SecretNetwork
𝕊 The Secret Network. Contribute to scrtlabs/SecretNetwork development by creating an account on GitHub.

What’s next?‌‌

These upgrades will create momentum, spurring innovation and growth until we hit Shockwave’s second major mainnet upgrade, Shockwave Omega. A shorter upgrade cycle means that every new feature does not need to be rushed and jammed into one upgrade. As a result, Shockwave Omega, expected to be the last mainnet upgrade during the Shockwave phase, will include a few upgrades that didn’t make the Alpha stage of Shockwave:‌‌

  • We’ll be upgrading to CosmWasm 1.0 smart contract infrastructure, aligning Secret Network with the other chains that have already made this change. This upgrade should further increase smooth and speedy Interchain activity, as smart contracts from each chain using the CosmWasm 1.0 infrastructure can be easily ported over to Secret Network and vice versa.
  • Currently, IBC connectivity is limited to native coins. Omega will enable Secret contracts to send IBC messages, allowing for the direct transfer of SNIP-20 tokens to other IBC chains.
  • Interchain accounts will be able to call secret contracts, enabling two-way IBC messaging. This will firmly establish Secret as a privacy hub!
  • We’re planning on replacing the engine that executes smart contracts, allowing faster processing of older and newer contracts. This change means faster everything on the network. Think of it as replacing the engine of a car with a much more powerful one. Same network, much faster performance.‌‌

In the meantime, the building won’t stop! Expect to see many small yet impactful changes made before Shockwave Omega is ultimately deployed – as well as many new product and ecosystem announcements. In the meantime, be sure to stay tuned for any updates here on the Secret Blog and Twitter!

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