Ethereum’s smart contracts have laid the groundwork for many decentralized applications and platforms, but how useful are the byproducts of their technology? In a collaborative effort between researchers at both Northeastern University and the University of Maryland, a group formed set of data regarding the ways that Ethereum smart contracts have progressed to this point, as described by The Block.
They wanted to examine the way that users and contracts interact, and they used bytecodes from every one of the first five million blocks of Ethereum’s blockchain. This was about equivalent to three years of data. One of the most surprising details is that only 40% of the smart contract created have ever even seen interactions. That makes that there is a lot of dormant code, along with dormant assets, found on the blockchain.
Instead, consumers will see a high amount of similarity found on Ethereum. In fact, with over one million smart contracts developed by users on the blockchain, users may be surprised to learn that they can essentially be broken down into 5,877 “clusters” of contract data. However, this poses a risk, considering that the reuse of code that ends up with a bug or vulnerability could pose a risk for thousands of contacts simultaneously. Furthermore, the majority of users on these smart contracts are actually other contracts, rather than investors, developers, or other individuals.
The information for 2017 shows that the average number of transactions increased exponentially, rising from 40,000 to over a million. Even though the price has been suffering lately, the transactions per day have not seen as much fluctuation.