Initial Thoughts on Agoric's Incentivized Testnet

We're at the end of Phase 1 of the Agoric incentivized testnet. We feel fortunate Chainflow is one of the 150 that made the cut from 6000 applicants.

100's or 1000's of Validators?

6000 is a huge number of applicants. Even if a good % of them were duplicate requests, bots, etc., it still leaves a large number of legitimate applicants.

That number gets me thinking about the "How many qualified validators exist?" debate. Typically, in Cosmos-based communities such as Agoric, the answer hovers between 100-200. Yet other networks, like Polkadot, see the answer numbering in the 1000's.

So it's interesting here to see both numbers appear. Ultimately, the 150 number won the day, consistent with a Cosmos-based network. It does leave me wondering if this number, inherent to the Cosmos protocol, is a strength or weakness.

On one hand, the theory goes, a smaller number should result in a stronger set of better qualified validators. On the other hand, a larger number should strengthen the network through increased decentralization

On Organization and Documention

I've participated in many testnets and advised on some too. It's with this experience I'll say that Agoric's incentivized testnet, so far, is one of the best organized and documented testnets I've seen.

The documentation is consolidated in a single place. The Phases are described well and their tasks are easy to understand. Additional documentation is linked to the primary source of info as necessary. The documentation itself is logically organized from a validator's perspective, thorough and accurate.

In It for the Long Haul

Chainflow hosted an AMA on Agoric's incentived testnet last week. During it, we learned the testnet is expected to last a few months.

This timeline encourages long-term commitment from validators. Chainflow's in it for the long haul and I look forward to seeing how things progress through the phases.

P.S. - Want to stake with us on Agoric when the network goes live? Email agoric@chainflow.io to let us know 🤝

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