Latest TEA Project Developments for Epoch 11

Tea Project Blog
6 min readOct 18, 2022


This post will go over the latest developments as far as where the TEA Project is at heading into Epoch 11. This post will balance both the practical aspect of these developments with the theoretical foundations behind them. For those looking for a more straightforward “nuts and bolts” guide to Epoch 11, you can find that guide here:

Moving to Ethereum

TEA as a layer-2 running on top of Ethereum.

The TEA Project is now on Ethereum. TEA’s development team has migrated TEA’s layer-2 to Ethereum, which will be our main first-layer chain. This is considered our main blockchain as it’s where our layer-2 nodes’ proof of trust data will be stored. From there, our second-layer is technically cross-chain capable as different chains can all access our compute layer.

There are many positive implications from the recent progress we’ve made.

  • The TEA Project moves closer to becoming one of the largest and most comprehensive web3 ecosystems available. Through our layer-2, users will be able to bridge their assets from various blockchains and begin interacting with dApps and exchanges from other chains. But the main draw will be our compute layer that runs as a meta layer to all compatible blockchains as well as the tools we’ll have available to develop TApps, our version of dApps that go beyond smart contracts.
  • While we now support the Ethereum ecosystem, we didn’t remove support for the Polkadot ecosystem. That’s because the TEA Project can technically cooperate with any main chain that supports multi-signature. The actual development time to deploy to a new layer-1 chain should be only a few weeks of work.

Possibility of a cross-chain DEX: Since TEA Project is fundamentally cross-chain, it’s technically possible to implement a cross-chain DEX similar to Uniswap with some enhancements:

  • Transactable assets won’t be limited to the ERC20 standard.
  • Since transactions occur on our layer-2, the gas fee will be close to 0.
  • The transaction speed and capacity are no longer limited by blocks.

Separating Dev and Host

The TEA Project has pioneered a tokenomics model that separates the economy of the web3 app owner and the host owner. In the traditional cloud computing web2 model, the owner of an application is responsible for securing hosting for both its app and the data it interacts with. This hosting could be either on-premise or rented (the cloud). The owner of the app has full control and responsibility over the data and the app. An additional consideration is that cloud computing service providers also have the ability to terminate service to an app developer.

The new TEA economic design completely separates app ownership and management. Miners (the hosts that provide computing services) are independent providers of hosting services. The app owner does not requisition these hosting node providers for their own apps. Instead, it’s the end-users who pay the hosting nodes for the privilege of using their hardware to run the decentralized TApps.

The app owner is no longer responsible for hosting; instead, they deploy their apps as compiled binaries to IPFS and this setup reveals the unique economic compensation model that helps incentivize users in the TEA Project ecosystem:

  • The end-user pays the gas fee to the miner, which is the primary source of their profits.
  • The end-user pays a fee to use the app to the app developer. You can think of the owner of the app obtaining application charges of the app through in-app-purchases. The different profit models of the hosting miner and the app developer don’t depend on each other and cannot control or influence each other.

There are many other implications of this design including the following:

  • The app owner no longer has full control over their app being listed or delisted. App delistings are a common form of censorship in web2 app marketplaces. As long as there are miners willing to host, the app will run. This process is completely decentralized and doesn’t require the participation and control of cloud computing service providers.
  • The data being executed by the app is entirely located in the hardware enclave of the mining machine, which technically still belongs to the end-user. Unless authorized by the user, others, including miners themselves, cannot get access to their private data.
  • The gas fee paid by the end-user is for the consumption of system computing resources and has nothing to do with the application logic. It’s extremely cheap from a hardware perspective and doesn’t require competition for computing power. The cost of gas is negligible and is just there to ensure the miners are compensated.
  • The fee that the user pays to the app owner for using the app is only related to the application logic, not to the consumption of computing resources. Because the app owner is not paying for the cost of running the server, the miners are responsible for the upkeep costs of their own machines.
  • Miners and app owners decide the rates themselves, which could even be free if they want.

If you’d like to read more about the separation of developer and hosting in the TEA Project as well as more of the philosophical underpinnings of the system, please refer to the following guide:

Economic Incentives for Maintaining the State Machine

The global state maintainer nodes system uses Harberger taxation in an effort to be open and fair to the community Although TEA is not a blockchain and does not require computing power competition or staking for consensus, it still requires a fixed small group to maintain the state of the entire network. If this group does not have a reasonable rewards system which encourages everyone to participate, then it’s too easy for a privileged class to form which will damage the interests of the entire network. We want all members to share in the benefits of the state machine which is why we‘ve chosen the Harberger tax methodology to let all members share in the benefits.

The importance of this design is in a few of the outcomes it achieves:

  • It avoids wasting computing power or the centralization of power caused by PoS for the sake of consensus.
  • It publicly tokenizes the profits of the state maintainers and shares them with all community members.

Tokenization of Multiple TEA Ecosystem Entities

You’ll notice that entities in the TEA Project tend to get tokenized and become investment vehicles in their own right. Support for investment options is woven into all aspects of the TEA Project. We have aimed to tokenize almost anything that involves revenue. For example, the following roles are all investable through tokens in the TEA ecosystem:

CML: The CML miner qualification token is an NFT procurable as a mining license for anyone who wishes to run a node. In addition, every active CML miner will have their own investable token which can be invested by anyone with TEA.
App: every app can be an investment target. Everyone can invest and participate in the revenue of any app in the TEA ecosystem by investing in its token.

These investment methods are controlled using a defi algorithm known as a bonding curve. This would be the source of profit for project developers, community members, and investors.

The Current State of Nodes in Epoch 11

At present, the Epoch11 testnet is still using a hosting node emulator due to cost considerations. That said, the AWS Nitro mining machine support has already been completed and can be deployed on the mainnet at any time.

This means that AWS Nitro nodes can be deployed in time for the mainnet launch. The code and logic of both are the same; the difference is that the testnet does not require a hardware security chip but instead uses a software emulator. The mainnet runs under the protection of AWS Nitro’s hardware security chip. When we develop our own mining machine to replace Nitro in the future, the cost will no longer be an issue.