Announcing the Nodesmith Ethereum beta

At Nodesmith, our mission is to further the adoption of decentralized technology by providing the foundational infrastructure of Web3. Our company began that mission by partnering with Aion Foundation to provide simple and scalable JSON RPC API access to Aion network nodes. We’re thrilled to announce today that we’re making our service available for Ethereum.

You can visit https://beta.dashboard.nodesmith.io/#/signUp to try it out. Once you’ve signed up, you’ll receive an API key which can be used to send transactions or read data from the Ethereum network with absolutely zero infrastructure setup. Our API is compliant with the standard Ethereum JSON RPC interface — we think it’s critically important for developers to have multiple options when it comes to node providers — including the ability to always switch back to a local node with a single config change.

In this beta release, we’ve also included a brand new service that we’re really excited about — the smart contract event cache. A common pain point for dApp developers is the speed at which logs can be read from the Ethereum network (i.e. eth_getLogs). Many developers have built in-house infrastructure components to deal with this problem — which isn’t trivial, especially when dealing with tricky situations like chain reorgs.

We’ve built out an event log cache that Nodesmith users can immediately take advantage of. Any calls to eth_getLogs will hit our event cache rather than being propagated to the underlying node (which can be the difference of minutes). Check out this demo app that showcases the differences in read speed with or without the event cache.


What exactly is in the beta?

The beta we’re releasing today includes the following:

  • Hassle free JSON RPC API access to the primary Ethereum testnets — Kovan, Ropsten, Rinkeby, and even Goerli! (mainnet support will be released in about a week).
  • The smart contract event cache.
  • Management dashboard used to create projects, receive API keys, and view stats about your project usage.
  • A robust, scalable, cloud agnostic and global infrastructure. As has been a hot topic this week, running full archival nodes is not a simple endeavor. We’ve put a ton of engineering efforts into ensuring our infrastructure can handle intense load and isn’t dependent on a single cloud provider.
  • Our existing production service’s functionality — JSON RPC access to the Aion mainnet and testnet.

A note on our philosophy

At Nodesmith, one of the topics we get asked about most frequently is the inherent tension of building a centralized service on top of decentralized networks . We understand and appreciate the concern, but we believe that infrastructure such as ours is necessary to increase the adoption of decentralized technology— to put it another way, our approach is one of pragmatic idealism.

First and foremost — we are idealists and we are extremely optimistic about the future. We’re building Nodesmith because we truly believe that decentralized blockchain technology has the potential to significantly and positively impact the world — making the world more equitable and transparent. We think those goals are worth pursuing.

Secondly, we are pragmatic and believe that progress towards those goals will be made in incremental steps. Today, our focus is on solving as many problems as possible that are slowing down blockchain developers. By doing so, we will empower developers to build faster — allowing them to focus on the unique aspects of their applications, rather than thorny infrastructure challenges. This in turn will help propagate the adoption of decentralized technology.

One last note — we also believe it is important to build companies that are sustainable. At Nodesmith, we’ve been intentional about building a company that can generate revenue — so that we can continue to innovate and provide reliable infrastructure. Once we finish our beta in a few months, we will give developers clear rate limits and pricing (with generous free tiers of course). This will also allow us to provide SLAs around uptime and support. We’re still exploring exact numbers as well as various open source and open core models. We’d value your input and would love to begin a conversation with the community.


Where do we go from here?

For Nodesmith, our immediate focus is on supporting beta participants and responding to any feedback or bug reports that come through in the next few weeks. After that, we will bring you even more services that will make your Ethereum and Aion app development easier. Here’s a list of things we’re working on:

  • Webhooks API — get notified when events happen on chain (like a smart contract event, or an address’ balance changes)
  • Reliable and performant IPFS storage and retrieval
  • Hosted side chains and bridges as a service

We’d love to hear if any of these services interest you. We’d also love to hear about any current infrastructure challenges you have.

As for where you go from here, that’s even easier! Go check out our service and let us know what you think: https://beta.dashboard.nodesmith.io/#/signUp.


Thanks for reading! We’d love to hear feedback from you. Follow us here or on Twitter to stay up to date with our latest news.

P.S. We’re hiring talented engineers who are passionate about decentralized technology and infrastructure challenges. Please reach out to us at hiring@nodesmith.io and send us your résumé.