The Ethereum network brought smart contracts into the blockchain space, making concepts like decentralized finance (DeFi) possible. Smart contracts can automatically execute processes once certain conditions have been met. Along with this new technology, a new coding language was developed called Solidity.
As the blockchain industry continues to grow and new blockchain networks emerge, additional programming languages are being brought into the space. Programming languages are a set of rules that convert strings of text and numbers into machine-readable code. In simple terms, programming languages enable computers to understand instructions that are input by human beings.
In this article, we are going to discuss the three smart contract languages - Solidity, Vyper, And Scrypto.
Solidity is statically typed, supports inheritance, libraries, and complex user-defined types among other features. With Solidity, you can create contracts for uses such as voting, crowdfunding, blind auctions, and multi-signature wallets. When deploying contracts, you should use the latest released version of Solidity. Apart from exceptional cases, only the latest version receives security fixes. Furthermore, breaking changes as well as new features are introduced regularly. We currently use a 0.y.z version number to indicate this fast pace of change.
Vyper is a smart contract language paradigm deriving from Python 3 syntax and conventions and targeting the EVM. The EVM is a simulated global singleton computer that runs parallel to the block-chained ledger on Ethereum, allowing for the construction of more complex transactions and conditional self-executing agreements encoded smart contract objects. The Ethereum platform itself is featureless and value agnostic, providing only the backbone of how smart contracts are to be put together and in the context of what applications.
Vyper is intended to be leveraged with the upcoming transition to Proof-of-Stake (Casper) and provide a more pragmatic minimalist regime for reading and writing smart contracts, with a focus on auditability, syntactical simplicity, and straightforwardness.
Scrypto is an asset-orientated smart contract language. The language was developed by Radix, is based on Rust, and keeps most of Rust’s features while adding specific functions and syntax for Radix Engine v2. Since Scrypto is asset-orientated, it can interact with assets such as tokens, which are a type of resource within the language.
In coding languages like Solidity, ERC-20 tokens exist as smart contracts on the EVM. Assets within Scrypto are resources that exist within containers and vaults. In simple terms, it’s like having a bucket (the container) and filling it with coins (the asset) that can be stored inside a piggybank (the vault).
Scrypto also focuses on being developer-friendly by allowing them to only write the necessary code while interacting with the containers and resources to enable functionality within a DApp. Security is another principle with developers being able to give specific instructions to a DApp instead of giving out blanket permissions.
Programming Languages That Blockchain Developers Should Choose
“With more languages coming to Web3, we will likely see a period of time where there are quite a few competing approaches. As these languages find product-market fit with developers and most importantly enable those developers to build powerful, useful and secure DApps, we will likely see the industry gravitate towards those that deliver the best results.”
Solidity will naturally be the choice for developers who want to work on Ethereum and similar blockchain networks. At the same time, Vyper and Scrypto could attract developers who prefer simplicity and additional security. Scrypto may also be preferable for developers due to its increased simplicity and asset-orientated approach.