Adding Cross Chain Integration

Hi,

I’ve been an IDLE user for many months now, but I’ve been encountering some usability problems, namely in the way of withdrawing funds from the Ethereum blockchain. The gas fees are actually horrendously high, in some cases HIGHER than what has been deposited. This is not good for UX point of view or gaining adoption among new users. I’ve searched the forums and I’ve read the BinanceChain (BSC) integration as well as Fanton Chain integration. Essentially, any chain would be better at this point, than not having a secondary chain to deposit/withdraw assets.

We are competing against a number of DeFi projects and we want to stand out. Gain a stronger user base.

Personally, I would prefer to have the POLYGON chain added. The SDK is being released very shortly and it is a layer 2 solution. I do understand you may not have enough resources to devote to this, but I feel this is strongly important, especially since ETH fees realistically won’t really go down until 2.0 is released.

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Great discussion.

I’m not particularly technical, but I would have thought with Yearn as an existing partner with Idle Strategies live with them it would make sense to adapt to solutions that will best align our protocol with key partners like Yearn and Sushi.

So Fantom, or L2 solutions that are supported by key partner teams feels like a logical option. Fish where the fish are!

I also think it’s an opportunity and would be worthy of a grant to a great developer to help us build it.

Very interested in the views of the league committee and the team on this.

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I agree it’s an opportunity. It’s also a challenge.

Please check my reasoning.

Idle’s L2/multi-chain approach needs to fit overall product strategy. Idle is an aggregator and thus depends on base protocols for yield generation. Ultimately, funds have to be deposited into base yield bearing protocols. Also, Idle’s proposition so far has been a safe aggregator, as opposed to “test in prod” kind. So I see 2 main options here:

Option 1: Cloning. Deploy Idle copy to a cheap-gas L2/chain, where base lending protocols exist, and aggregate those.

Immediate problem with this is that 3 supported protocols - Aave, Compound, dYdX - only co-exist on Ethereum L1. Nor have they announced any plans that will conveniently put them together on some L2 or chain. If anything, they seem to be moving in different directions: Compound towards Optimism (and in longer term Compound Chain); dYdX to a zk-rollup; Aave launched Polygon-based markets, which may be a sign.

Large and reputable lending protocols are rare. Having more than one on the same chain, to be able to re-balance between them, is very rare.

Let’s say Idle decides to expand into less proven lending protocols (absorbing occasional losses with treasury). That may open more options, but we still need to find a cheap-gas chain with more than one base protocol worth re-balancing between.

Option 2: Bridging. Deploy Idle to a cheap-gas L2/chain as a gateway that collects funds and sends them via cross-chain bridge to Ethereum, where base protocols live.

This allows regular users to deposit and withdraw on cheap-gas chain, which is great. Bridge transactions can be expensive though - they transact on both chains, the cheap one and expensive one, so are, um, expensive in total. That means deposits and withdrawals have to be batched, so that Idle does not operate at a loss. Having to wait days for your deposit or withdrawal to come through is not ideal, but can be a good trade-off for many.

From technical point of view such cross-chain architecture is order-of-magnitude more complex, meaning risky, meaning expensive. Bridges normally involve parties that must be trusted, making entire solution less secure.

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I definitely see your arguments about it being a challenge, but hey all of the projects in this space are facing challenges. What can we, as the community do, to help mitigate this. The last thing we would want is the project to not stand out and just be another project in the field of many.

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I agree with the comments made by @idal

this is something needed imo before diving into a side chain / L2

We are currently supporting batched deposits on L1 for USDC and DAI here and those have been used more and more, something can be done on withdrawals too (although more complex).

That’s true too and the point for me it’s also if it does make sense to invest a lot of resource now without still knowing which side chain / L2 will be The one or one with at least two big protocols

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One upcoming solution that may alleviate transaction costs is Layer2 Finance, including Idle:

It is a basically Idle’s batching, but via L2 and addressing entire Ethereum DeFi. Worth keeping an eye on.

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I think this is a good point to raise, it’s no secret that gas fees are a challenge across the board. Lowering the gas fees will do one of many things like lower the barriers to entry for lower wallet-size users, however, I do think there’s probably higher value items the team can focus on before this like adding more assets, more strategies, more integrations.
All that said, there should be an ongoing discovery piece for gas optimisation / L2 solution.

Didn’t know about them before, it seems really interesting (at least after reading those articles), but I don’t see so much more information eg docs or a timeline for mainnet. Let’s see how they move

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