Hi everyone, I just wanted to caveat by saying I’m not well versed with Celestia’s architecture yet, but I was encouraged by Nick to write a short post on this.
Validiums are gaining prominence on Ethereum, with Sorare and Immutable X settling millions of NFTs. Indeed, Sorare has quietly become one of the most popular dApps in the space with 500,000 MAUs and growing exponentially, and Immutable X raised $60M Series B yesterday with many top NFT and gaming related dApps deploying on it over the coming months. Currently, the StarkEx validiums have a data availability committee with reputable entities in the industry like ConsenSys and Nethermind. While the proofs on Ethereum ensure validity/security, this is a very problematic solution for liveness as invalid or offline data (held by a centralized committee) as verified by the smart contract on Ethereum will freeze the validium. Tom Brand from StarkWare has said they are looking at more solutions for StarkNet, but nothing specific announced this far.
zkSync 2.0 will also have a validium mode, but they are building their own zkPorter consensus mechanism from scratch. Likewise, Polygon are building Avail for their future validiums (and other usecases).
So, it comes down to two options currently - centralized data availability or spinning up a consensus mechanism.
This is where Celestia can play a role. Once zkSync 2.0 and StarkNet are released and open-sourced with the technology accessible, I anticipate we’ll see many players enter the validium/volition space leveraging Ethereum for validity, while looking for a data availability solution. Long term, I expect validiums to replace sidechains entirely. These validiums will be interested in a plug-and-play solution where they can publish validity proofs on Ethereum and all/most transaction data to Celestia - which is more decentralized than a committee and easier/better than creating your own consensus mechanism. I have no idea how or if this can be accomplished technically, though - just sharing my broad thoughts.