|Initial release||0.1.0 (Sep 2021)|
|Last release||0.7.0 (August 2022)|
Hydra is the layer-two scalability solution for Cardano, which aims to increase the speed of transactions (low latency, high throughput) and minimize transaction costs. Hydra scale the wider Cardano blockchain by reducing latency and increasing the throughput, or transactions per second(TPS). IOHK states Hydra can reach confirmation times of under one second, compared to the Cardano mainnet latency of 20 seconds.
Hydra is a scalability solution for the Cardano blockchain that aims to improve transaction throughput by enabling the parallel processing of transactions. It does this by dividing the network into multiple smaller sub-networks, or "heads," which can each process transactions independently. This allows the network to scale horizontally, rather than relying on a single node to process all transactions.
To use Hydra, users will need to install a compatible wallet or node software that supports Hydra. Once installed, users can create and join heads by staking their ADA tokens. Each head has a leader, who is responsible for proposing and validating transactions within the head. Heads can communicate with each other through inter-head messaging, allowing for the exchange of data and coordination of transactions.
One of the key benefits of Hydra is that it allows users to customize their level of participation in the network. Users can choose to join a small number of heads and participate as a leader, or they can join a larger number of heads and act as a follower. This flexibility allows users to find the balance between security, decentralization, and scalability that best meets their needs.