IELE: A Rigorously Designed Language and Tool Ecosystem for the Blockchain
Revision as of 13:53, 15 January 2020 by Yzhng173
- IELE: A Rigorously Designed Language and Tool Ecosystem for the Blockchain
- Kasampalis, Theodoros and Guth, Dwight and Moore, Brandon and Serbanuta, Traian Florin and Zhang, Yi and Filaretti, Daniele and Serbanuta, Virgil and Johnson, Ralph and Rosu, Grigore
- FM 2019, pp 593-610. 2019
- Abstract. This paper proposes IELE, an LLVM-style language, together with a tool ecosystem for implementing and formally reasoning about smart contracts on the blockchain. IELE was designed by specifying its semantics formally in the K framework. Its implementation, a IELE virtual machine (VM), as well as a formal verification tool for IELE smart contracts, were automatically generated from the formal specification. The automatically generated formal verification tool allows us to formally verify smart contracts without any gap between the verifier and the actual VM. A compiler from Solidity, the predominant high- level language for smart contracts, to IELE has also been (manually) implemented, so Ethereum contracts can now also be executed on IELE.
- IELE: An Intermediate-Level Blockchain Language Designed and Implemented Using Formal Semantics
- Theodoros Kasampalis and Dwight Guth and Brandon Moore and Traian Serbanuta and Virgil Serbanuta and Daniele Filaretti and Grigore Rosu and Ralph Johnson
- Technical Report http://hdl.handle.net/2142/100320, July 2018
- Abstract. Most languages are given an informal semantics until they are implemented, so the formal semantics comes later. Consequently, there are usually inconsistencies among the informal semantics, the implementation, and the formal semantics. IELE is an LLVM-like language for the blockchain that was specified formally and its implementation, a virtual machine, generated from the formal specification. Moreover, its design was based on problems observed formalizing the semantics of the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) and from formally specifying and verifying EVM programs (also called "smart contracts"), so even the design decisions made for IELE are based on formal specifications. A compiler from Solidity, the predominant high-level language for smart contracts, to IELE has also been implemented, so Ethereum contracts can now also be executed on IELE. The virtual machine automatically generated from the semantics of IELE is shown to be competitive in terms of performance with the state of the art and hence can stand as the de facto implementation of the language in a production setting. Indeed, IOHK, a major blockchain company, is currently experimenting with the IELE VM in order to deploy it as its computational layer in a few months. This makes IELE the first practical language that is designed and implemented as a formal specification. It took only 10 man-months to develop IELE, which demonstrates that the programming language semantics field has reached a level of maturity that makes it appealing over the traditional, adhoc approach even for pragmatic reasons.