Smart Contract Development in Practice: Trends, Issues, and Discussions on Stack Overflow

by   Afiya Ayman, et al.

Blockchain based platforms are emerging as a transformative technology that can provide reliability, integrity, and auditability without trusted entities. One of the key features of these platforms is the trustworthy decentralized execution of general-purpose computation in the form of smart contracts, which are envisioned to have a wide range of applications from finance to the Internet of Things. As a result, a rapidly growing and active community of smart contract developers has emerged in recent years. A number of research efforts have investigated the technological challenges that smart contract developers face. However, very little is known about the community itself, about the developers, and about the issues that they discuss and care about. To address this gap, we study the online community of smart contract developers on Stack Overflow. We provide insight into the topics that they discuss, their technological and demographic background, and their awareness of security issues and tools. Our results show that the community of smart contract developers is very active and growing rapidly, in comparison with the general user population. However, a large fraction of smart contract related questions remain unanswered, which can pose a real threat to the viability of a sustainable community and may indicate gaps in community knowledge. Further, we observe very limited discussion of security related topics, which is concerning since smart contracts in practice are plagued by security issues.


VeriSolid: Correct-by-Design Smart Contracts for Ethereum

The adoption of blockchain based distributed ledgers is growing fast due...

Smart Contract Security: a Practitioners' Perspective

Smart contracts have been plagued by security incidents, which resulted ...

Exploring Security Practices of Smart Contract Developers

Smart contracts are self-executing programs that run on blockchains (e.g...

Developers Struggle with Authentication in Blazor WebAssembly

WebAssembly is a growing technology to build cross-platform applications...

Towards a Contract Service Provider Model for Virtual Assets and VASPs

We introduce the contract service provider (CSP) model as an analog of t...

Who is Gambling? Finding Cryptocurrency Gamblers Using Multi-modal Retrieval Methods

With the popularity of cryptocurrencies and the remarkable development o...

Image-based Communication on Social Coding Platforms

Visual content in the form of images and videos has taken over general-p...

Please sign up or login with your details

Forgot password? Click here to reset