The Roadmap of Cardano Since its Inception

Handy Tips / 30.06.2021

Cardano is among the fastest-growing cryptocurrencies to date and a groundbreaking proof-of-stake blockchain network based on peer-to-peer academic research. It is intended to be the platform of choice for all significant, mission-critical DApps that will support the world’s future economy.

There are three unique organizations providing oversight to Cardano’s development: Cardano Foundation, Emurgo, and IOHK. The Cardano Foundation is responsible for promoting Cardano and supervising the development, IOHK develops Cardano’s technology, and Emurgo promotes commercial adoption.

Let’s take a look at Cardano’s roadmap since inception, then and now, and find out what its developers have in store for the future.

Cardano’s Roadmap Overview 

The Cardano roadmap summarises the currency’s development journey that has been grouped into five different eras: Goguen, Basho, Voltaire, Byron, and Shelley. While these eras of Cardano continue to launch sequentially, each era’s design and development work is parallel and harbors unique prototyping, development, and intensive research accolades.

The purpose of these eras is assembled and presented on their dedicated pages, which represents years of effort. 


The Byron era’s name originated from Lord Byron, but it is also known as the foundation era. It started in September 2017 when Cardano’s first version came to light.

Byron stage facilitated the trading of ADA via a federated network driven by the Ouroboros consensus protocol, which was the first PoS protocol constructed on broad academic research. The Byron era centered on putting up a sturdy foundation in readiness for Cardano and establishing a loyal community of enthusiasts.

The stage oversaw Emurgo’s Yoroi wallet launch and the Daedalus desktop wallet, a simpler alternative for daily use and faster transaction speeds. Unfortunately, this era ended in 2020 after the Shelley era’s launch unraveled.

Shelley Era

Shelley is a vital part of Cardano’s changeover to decentralization. The era’s launch occurred publicly on July 29, 2020, signaling the proof of stake era for Cardano and giving staking rewards to participants. In addition, this era made way for better network participation among the Cardano community.

Shelley got its name from Mary Shelley, the author of the horror book Frankenstein, which epitomizes Cardano’s ingenious nod towards becoming completely autonomous. Also, with more users operating the network’s nodes, ADA expects to realize more outstanding performance and security than the preliminary Byron-derived approach.

The strength of the Shelley upgrade is the involvement of ADA holders who double as the validators fueling the PoS system of the network. Shelley enables ADA owners to also give their stake to other network validators as a method of network involvement. Cardano’s team also hopes to be 50 to 100 times more efficient and decentralized than other networks.

Goguen (Smart Contracts Era)

The Goguen era, named after Joseph Goguen (an American computer scientist and academic), was launched in March 2021. Following the integration of smart contracts, this era represents a massive milestone in capability for the Cardano network.

While the Shelley era decentralizes the core system, Goguen creates the ability to construct DApps on Cardano’s solid foundation of high-assurance development and peer-to-peer research.

Another feature that Goguen will make available is more comprehensive interoperability with existing smart contracts, irrespective of the differences in coding language. Furthermore, its use of the Marlowe language on the Defi platform is built on Plutus (Cardano’s smart contract platform). Thus, it will help ensure that even novices can design their smart contracts without any technical expertise.

However, Cardano is still getting criticism from its community for its gradual upgrade. Most members, nevertheless, are convinced that a slow but sure process is crucial since it allows enough time for Cardano to backtest and review its developments.

Basho (Scaling)

Basho is an era of enhancing scalability, interoperability, and optimizing the network. The era is named after a famous Japanese poet, Matsuo Basho. It is focused on bringing two crucial developments to enhance sustainability:

  1. Sidechains will be applied as a sharding instrument to gauge the network capacity without disturbing its security.
  2. The launch of accounting styles will run parallel to the Cardano UTXO model, thus promoting better interoperability.

Voltaire (Governance error)

Voltaire’s development is the final stage in Cardano’s roadmap. The era seeks to make Cardano operate as an autonomous system by delivering an entirely decentralized network with a scalable transfer tech.

Voltaire will also ensure that a treasury system and voting are introduced, and users can use their stakes and voting rights to promote Cardano’s development. These self-governance pieces will streamline Cardano’s journey to complete decentralization. The platform’s management will also be transferred to the community from IOHK.

Cardano to Roll-Out Native Tokens

Cardano also publicized that they intend to start rolling out native tokens from its blockchain platform. The road map for the pre-production of tokens is scheduled to occur in December. In a video on Twitter, Hoskinson addressed various updates to expect on the platform.

The Cardano founder pointed out that the main difference between Cardano and ERC-20 tokens is in the building architecture. In contrast to the Ethereum blockchain, whereby Ether is accorded preference over other tokens, Cardano would not be biased to ADA over other assets. He also addressed the native asset standard that is incorporated into the ERC-20 convertor.


Judging from the accolades mentioned above, Cardano’s roadmap since its development is breathtaking. However, Cardano opted to go with a slow, gradual roll-out model. Even though some criticize it, its supporters say this gives it a competitive advantage to test for a massive scale.

Cardano has superior technology, but it is evident that having the best technology is not enough to win any market throughout history. Whether or not Cardano will succeed can only be told in a matter of time, but the future seems as bright as the sun for now.

Adam is an outgoing young lad who likes adventures and discovering new things. Despite his boring life, he loves writing about cryptocurrencies and exploring what blockchain technology can do for the coming digital world where all adventures will be virtual.