The MVP release of the Waku Network provides first-of-its-kind denial-of-service (DoS) protections that do not compromise privacy or censorship resistance. This release paves the way for supporting one million users on the Waku Network.
The team behind Waku, a leading privacy-first peer-to-peer communications protocol, announced that the open-source Waku Network MVP is now ready to be trialed with real users in Web3 apps. The MVP is estimated to support up to 80,000.
Comparatively, the largest number of daily users on a peer-to-peer network was around 150,000 (BitTorrent in 2008). The Waku Network is set to scale beyond this, with all peers participating in a shared routing layer and a focus on preserving user privacy.
The Waku Network introduces message rate-limiting, which provides DoS protections in a decentralized way without compromising privacy or censorship resistance. Individuals can join a group on-chain and prove their membership in each message in a zero-knowledge way, so their privacy is never compromised.
At launch, publishers are limited to one message per second, but the Waku team is exploring alternative models. This is a significant advancement in decentralized messaging, which, until now, has yet to offer viable solutions to DoS or spam messaging that do not compromise privacy or censorship resistance.
The Waku Network is the first-ever useable implementation of decentralized routing for a generalized and shared communications layer. The routing layer refers to the path a message takes when it is being sent from one peer to another.
Traditionally, decentralized messaging has involved direct communication between peer-to-peer identities like blockchain addresses. However, the Waku Network decentralizes the communication path itself. This is a breakthrough in the future of decentralized communications, allowing an even greater degree of privacy.
Scalability is also greatly improved in the Waku Network by introducing sharding. The Waku Network has launched with eight shards. Modelling and simulations from Vac indicate each shard can support up to ten thousand active users while maintaining reasonable bandwidth requirements for participating relay nodes.
Assuming that only a small percentage of overall users are active at any given time, the network can be expected to support much larger numbers. There is a roadmap in place to scale this further as the network grows.
Waku is a public good that was built to replace Ethereum’s Whisper when it became clear it was not fit for purpose. Waku’s messaging protocols are blockchain agnostic and can be implemented on any Web3, or even Web2, app, and are already in use by Status, Railgun, and the Graph. Playing a crucial role in the Web3 trifecta, which includes decentralized consensus, communications, and storage, Waku has been recognized as essential for the realization of a fully operational Web3.
Waku Lead Franck Royer said on the launch: “The Waku Network Gen 0 is the concrete realization of years of research and development work, combining cutting edge technology such as RLN with proven peer-to-peer conceptions such as gossipsub, discv5, and sharding. We are confident that this represents a huge milestone in the mission to bring decentralized, privacy-focused communication to millions of users for the first time.”
Logos co-founder Carl Bennetts commented: “The launch of the Waku Network is a huge milestone for securing civil liberties. Our focus is now on scaling the network to support more users through continued enhancement of the technology. We accomplished this launch thanks to close collaboration with the web3 community, engaging with both users and developers to learn their needs. This collaborative effort allowed us to provide software that is both practical and user-friendly.”
The network launch was celebrated in Bengaluru, India at a side event alongside ETHIndia, where Waku has $10,000 in bounties up for grabs during the hackathon running Dec. 8-10.
Waku is an open-source, privacy-focused group of decentralized messaging protocols that allows accessibility on even resource-restricted devices. It empowers users to reclaim control over their data and communication, counteracting the global reach of technology giants and the centralized messaging applications we rely on.
Logos is creating a self-sovereign, decentralized technology stack that protects civil liberties by design and can be used to build consent-based social, economic, and governing institutions. Waku serves as the communications layer for the Logos technology stack.
Vac builds public good protocols for the decentralized web. As an integral part of the Logos collective, Vac comprises R&D Service Units, Incubator Projects, Deep Research, and the RFC (specification) process for Logos projects.