Optimism (OP) is a layer-two smart contract network that aims to enable low-cost, near-instantaneous Ethereum transactions. Optimism speeds up Ethereum transactions and cuts their costs by settling them on another blockchain.
It uses a technique called optimism rollups, whereby multiple transactions are batched into one and settled on the Optimism layer, with data fed back to the main Ethereum network. Its rollups “optimistically” assume all transactions in them are valid.
Optimism was introduced in June 2019 and its testnet was released in October 2019. In January 2021, an alpha mainnet of Optimism was launched, but it took until October 2021 for Optimism to launch a network compatible with the Ethereum Virtual Machine.
What is OP used for?
The OP token shifts the network’s structure by fueling the Optimism Collective, a governance system for funding composed of the Token House and the Citizens’ House. The Token House allows OP holders to vote on projects associated with Optimism, while the Citizens’ House facilitates and governs funding for projects aimed at promoting public goods.
Rumors Optimism was launching a governance token started circulating on April 20, 2022 when an OP token page was spotted on Coinbase.