Ethereum Introduces ‘Fe’ Smart Contract Language

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  • Ethereum developers will soon have a new language in which to create smart contracts
  • ‘Fe’ has been developed off the popular Rust/Python computing languages, allowing for easier access to the ecosystem
  • The new language will roll out in 2021

Ethereum has introduced a new smart contract language for the first time since its development in 2013. Fe, pronounced Fee, takes its name from the chemical element iron in the periodic table, and has been created to allow more choice for developers who might already be familiar with other languages like Rust and Python. The language should be ready for demonstration at the end of this year and will roll out fully in 2021.

Fe Will Address Solidity Complaints

Solidity has been the Ethereum coding language since its inception in 2013, requiring developers to learn a whole new language if they want to create Ethereum smart contracts. However, Solidity has faced its critics over the years, with users complaining about insufficient documentation, poor user support, poor testing facilities, and more.

The issues with Solidity stem from it being a young language, with Ethereum developers coming across bugs that even the Solidity creators have never before encountered. Therefore the creation of Fe, which is based on the popular Rust language, will be easier for developers to work with for a number of reasons.

Ethereum Foundation software engineer Christoph Burgdorf said in a piece introducing Fe that the new Rust/Python-inspired language “allows for readable and expressive code that would be familiar to developers who have used Python”. This will in turn bring “more choices for developers” which will be a “net positive for the ecosystem.”

New Ethereum Language Set for 2021 Rollout

As for when the new Ethereum language will launch, Burgdorf has his eyes in the very near future:

In the past month, development on Fe has ramped up significantly. We are optimistic about adding support for all features used in an ERC20 contract and be able to compile one before the end of 2020. To be clear, the compiler will in no way be a suitable choice for a production ERC20 by that time, but we look forward to demonstrating the capabilities of Fe with such a well understood working example.

Ethereum developers can therefore look forward to Fe being rolled out in full in 2021, with the arrival of a more easily understood and easy to learn language potentially sparking a new wave of creativity within the Ethereum ecosystem.