Jukan Tateisi

Taming the Beast: A Journey Through Blockchain Data Access with Agnostic

Join us as we navigate the labyrinth of blockchain data access and reveal how Agnostic is revolutionizing how builders and analysts harness the power of Web3.

Didier FRANC
Agnostic
Published in
5 min readApr 30, 2023

--

Introduction

Blockchain technology has disrupted industries and promised a more transparent, decentralized, and secure future. Amid this revolution, our small but dedicated team at Agnostic, including myself, Arnaud Briche, and Yann Amsellem, embarked on a mission to unravel the complexities of accessing data from EVM-compatible blockchains like Ethereum, Arbitrum, and Polygon. As the CEO and co-founder, I am proud to be a part of this journey alongside my talented teammates. I invite you to discover how Agnostic has emerged as a game-changing solution for builders and analysts seeking to harness the power of blockchain data.

Chapter 1: The Genesis — Encountering the Beast

Our story began when we realized that despite the wealth of information contained within EVM-compatible blockchains, accessing, decoding, and utilizing this data was far from straightforward. The challenges we faced were numerous:

  • The Node Barrier: We quickly discovered that accessing blockchain data requires relying on costly nodes provided by companies like Infura or Alchemy. This expense created a financial barrier that stood in the way of unlocking the full potential of blockchain data.
  • Decoding the Puzzle: Each smart contract encoded data differently on the chain, making decoding a complex and time-consuming task requiring significant expertise and resources.
  • Indexing Maze: We understood that properly indexing blockchain data was essential for efficient querying and analysis, but this process needed to be more manageable, resource-intensive, and challenging to implement effectively.
  • A Dearth of Analytics Tools: We found that the unique nature of blockchain data demanded tailored analytics tools, but many existing solutions fell short, making the analysis process more difficult and time-consuming.

Chapter 2: The Quest — Building Agnostic

Undeterred by these challenges, we created a solution to overcome the complexities of accessing EVM-compatible blockchain data. Our unwavering commitment to this mission led us to develop Agnostic. This platform streamlines extracting and leveraging data from these blockchains by providing low-latency SQL access.

As we ventured deeper into the world of blockchain data, we continued to expand Agnostic’s capabilities:

  • Decoding Mastery: We tirelessly worked to improve our decoding prowess, and today, Agnostic successfully decodes approximately 90% of the available data. This breakthrough allows users to access a wealth of previously obscured information, making more informed decisions and building more robust applications.
  • Seamless Compatibility: We realized the importance of integrating with popular analytics and monitoring tools, so we ensured Agnostic’s compatibility with the PostgreSQL protocol. This feature allows Agnostic to effortlessly incorporate tools like Grafana and Superset, simplifying the analysis process and broadening the range of tools available to users.
  • The Power of an Integrated SQL IDE: To make data extraction more intuitive and user-friendly, we developed an integrated SQL IDE that enables users to craft SQL queries easily, complete with autocomplete features. This design empowers users to extract the exact data they need while minimizing the learning curve typically associated with querying blockchain data.
The Agnostic IDE
  • Unleashing the Potential of GraphQL API: We wanted builders to focus on creating cutting-edge applications without getting bogged down by data access challenges. So, we incorporated a feature that enables users to generate a GraphQL API directly from their SQL queries. This simplifies the process of building dApps and accessing live, low-latency data.

Chapter 3: The Reward — Agnostic’s Impact on the Blockchain Ecosystem

  • Revolutionizing DevOps: Agnostic’s compatibility with Grafana allows developers to monitor their smart contract data like never before. This integration streamlines tracking and managing on-chain data, resulting in more efficient and proactive DevOps practices. Additionally, the alerting system ensures that potential issues are identified and addressed promptly, reducing the risks associated with operating in the Web3 environment.
  • Empowering Analysts: As the leading data indexing platform for EVM-compatible blockchains, Agnostic has become an invaluable tool for analysts seeking insights from blockchain data. The platform’s ability to decode and index vast amounts of data, coupled with its compatibility with leading analytics tools, enables analysts to unlock the full potential of blockchain information, driving better decision-making and uncovering new opportunities.
  • Building a Community: At the heart of Agnostic’s success is our commitment to fostering a vibrant and engaged community of users, partners, and enthusiasts. By providing comprehensive documentation, responsive support, and continuously improving our platform based on user feedback, we strive to create an environment that nurtures collaboration and innovation.

Chapter 4: The Road Ahead — Agnostic’s Vision for the Future

Our journey thus far has been challenging and rewarding, but we know much is still to be done. As we continue to refine and expand our platform, we remain focused on our core mission: to simplify and democratize access to EVM-compatible blockchain data.

Looking ahead, we are committed to:

  • Expanding our coverage: As the blockchain landscape evolves, we will strive to support other EVM-compatible networks, ensuring that our users can access the most relevant and up-to-date data.
  • Enhancing the developer experience: We will continue to invest in our integrated SQL IDE, autocomplete features, and GraphQL API generation capabilities, making it even easier for developers to build robust and innovative applications on top of EVM-compatible blockchains.
  • Strengthening our community: We will deepen our engagement with users, partners, and the broader blockchain community, fostering collaboration and knowledge-sharing to drive the future of decentralized technology.

Conclusion

Our journey through the complexities of EVM-compatible blockchain data access has been one of discovery, innovation, and growth. As we continue to develop Agnostic, we remain dedicated to empowering builders and analysts with the tools they need to unlock the full potential of the Web3 world. Together, we will shape the future of decentralized technology and create a more open, transparent, and secure digital ecosystem.

--

--