A16z’s hyped-up orange balls revealed to be an L2 rollup client

A16z’s hyped-up orange balls revealed to be an L2 rollup client

A series of cryptic tweets depicting orange balls were revealed to be building up hype for a new rollup client for Optimism (OP) called “Magi” from the crypto arm of venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz (A16z).

An April 19 Tweet from a16z engineer Noah Citron explained Magi is written in the programming language Rust and will “help improve the client diversity and resilience of the entire OP Stack ecosystem.”

The OP Stack refers to the set of software that powers the Ethereum layer-2 solution Optimism. Among the other benefits it provides, it helps simplify the process of creating layer-2 blockchains.

Citron explained Magi “takes the place of a consensus client (often called rollup client) in the OP Stack, and works alongside an execution client such as op-geth to sync,” meaning that it allows the Ethereum chain to advance by feeding new blocks to the execution client.


The lead engineer for Coinbase’s layer-2 solution Base, Jesse Pollak, also chimed in on the announcement, tweeting that “magi means more decentralization, security, and scale for the OP Stack.”

In an April 19 blog post, Citron opined that decentralization increases network security, which is “critically important for rollups” just as it is for the base layer of Ethereum.

A16z’s cryptic hype orange circle tweets echoed the way Coinbase hyped and introduced its own layering network called Base, which instead featured tweets of a blue circle.

Related: US share of global crypto developers fell 26% in 5 years — a16z

Citron kicked off the hype train with a tweet of an orange circle on April 18 bearing the phrase “coming soon.”

Its similarity to the hype before the announcement of Base prompted the crypto community to theorize another Ethereum layer-2 solution was imminent before a16z’s chief technology officer, Eddy Lazzarin, quashed the rumors.

Citron also noted that Magi is still currently in development, and while it can currently sync to the Optimism testnet it will be some months before it is production-ready.

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