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Gas Station Network Alliance: Zeppelin & TabooKey

Thank you for your interest in this post! We’re undergoing a rebranding process, so please excuse us if some names are out of date.

by Ramon Recuero

For the last few years, we have witnessed how blockchain applications have failed to gain traction and failed to reach mass adoption. Usability and user onboarding, in particular, have been major pain points for developers and users alike. If you are interested in the topic, we covered this issue in depth in a previous article.

This month at ETHDenver, TabooKey’s Yoav Weiss explained and demoed the “1-800 Ethereum” Gas Station Network, an elegant solution that could help (d)apps acquire new users.

“No ETH for gas? No wallet? No problem!”

Zeppelin is joining forces with TabooKey to help bring the Gas Station Network into production as soon as the possible. We believe this solution addresses many of the previous concerns while being true to the open ethos of the ecosystem. The design is trustless & decentralized so (d)apps no longer have to trade off security for usability.

Up until TabooKey’s Gas Station Network, all the implementations of gasless/meta transactions depended either on centralized relayers or faced serious synchronization issues with peer-to-peer relayers.

Zeppelin and TabooKey bringing the Gas Station Network into production will be the culmination of months of momentum building up around meta transactions. Meta transactions are gasless transactions that allow users to start interacting with an application in seconds. This means they don’t need to install browser extensions, purchase cryptocurrencies or ponder about how to guard their private keys.

The principle of gasless transactions is that the user signs a transaction and passes it to a relay that pays the gas to submit it to the blockchain. This expense can be assumed as part of the CAC (Customer Acquisition Cost) for blockchain applications.

We salute the MetaCartel community for driving the experimentation and adoption of this technology. Now, there are already several products that leverage meta transactions. At ETHDenver, attendees received Austin Griffith’s burner wallet, which used meta transactions to create a frictionless food paying experience during the event. The experiment supported more than $38K in sales in just three days. Burner wallet now uses TabooKey’s Gas Station Network.

Universal logins is another excellent example, Gasless transactions together with ENS could create frictionless logins for blockchain applications.

Zeppelin + TabooKey

We are confident this solution will become a core piece of the ecosystem during the following months. When we met during ETHDenver, we had great conversations about the state of the ecosystem. We quickly saw that Zeppelin and TabooKey share the same commitment to the open source community. OpenZeppelin has been a foundational piece of the Ethereum open source ecosystem for the last few years. From the beginning, TabooKey developed the Gas Station Network as a no-strings-attached open source gift to the Ethereum community.

Given all these facts, we are very excited to announce a partnership between Zeppelin & TabooKey to push the gas station network forward.

What we are going to work on

Here are a few more details about the partnership and the tasks ahead of us.

  • Zeppelin is going to audit the Gas Station Network. Zeppelin will audit the smart contracts and review the client and backend code. We’ll both work on fixing and addressing any vulnerabilities that we find.
  • Zeppelin and TabooKey are going to iterate and push EIP-1613. Zeppelin brings all the experience obtained from auditing some of the biggest projects, including Augur and Ethereum Solidity Compiler. TabooKey has done a great job drafting the EIP-1613. As we audit the project and we iterate on the technology, we will adjust the proposal and push it forward together, providing an implementation in OpenZeppelin.
  • Zeppelin and TabooKey will build foundational tools to manage the infrastructure. Tools to help add relayers to the gas station network and manage them
  • Always Open Source. Gas Station will be released to the Ethereum Ecosystem. We’ll deploy it to mainnet. Then, given that the main contract (RelayHub) is not ownable, the gas station network will continue living autonomously for the benefit of the whole ecosystem.
  • ZeppelinOS will provide tools to help dapp developers easily integrate gas station network within their applications.

That’s all for now. We’ll be updating our progress with the Gas Station Network within the following weeks. In the meantime, please feel free to participate in the initiative on Github or social media.

Gas Station Network Relevant Links

Code repository
Gas Station Network Explanation