When it comes to Cardano, IOG CEO Charles Hoskinson recently tweeted that the term “smart contract” is a misnomer.
Instead, he proposes that the new functionality be referred to as “programmable validators” by the community.
IOG developer Matthias Benkort first noticed the semantic inaccuracy. Because of its eUTXO transaction model, he claims that Cardano’s programmability is drastically different from competing blockchains such as Ethereum and Solana. As a result, smart contracts cannot be used on Cardano:
There is no such thing as “deploying” a smart-contract on Cardano, unlike Ethereum, Solana, Algorand, and others. Validators are instead implicitly referred to by hashes prior to their use, and they are revealed when they are activated.
Benkort goes on to say that the community frequently confuses validators and smart contracts.
However, he admits that adopting other terms, such as “on-chain validators,” will be difficult from a marketing standpoint:
Finally, “smart contracts” appears to be a nebulous term. I’d rather use terms like “on-chain validators” and “off-chain code” instead. However, I believe this will be a difficult one to market.
After causing controversy with its concurrency issue, Cardano released the long-awaited Alonzo hard fork on September 12th. Within 24 hours, 100 smart contracts were deployed on the network.
Despite the fact that Cardano is a latecomer to the decentralized finance party, with Ethereum currently reigning supreme, Hoskinson has long dismissed the first-mover advantage in DeFi.