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What is The Graph?

An introduction to The Graph Network on Coinbase Wallet

What is The Graph

The Graph (GRT) serves as the indexing and query layer of web3, providing a powerful solution for organizing and retrieving data from blockchains. Much like Google indexes the web for efficient searching, The Graph indexes data from blockchains like Ethereum, making it easily searchable and accessible.

At its core, The Graph enables the creation, publication, and querying of open APIs known as subgraphs. These subgraphs specify the particular blockchain data that needs to be indexed, how it should be organized, and how it should be served. Essentially, subgraphs define the extraction, transformation, and storage of data from blockchain events, facilitating seamless data retrieval for applications.

Subgraphs play a crucial role in extracting data from blockchains in a structured and efficient manner. They act as bridges between decentralized applications (dapps) and the diverse blockchains they interact with, enabling swift and efficient retrieval of blockchain data. To gain a deeper understanding of how subgraphs are created and used, refer to The Graph Docs.

The Graph has gained significant traction among developers, with over 44,000 utilizing the protocol for various applications such as Snapshot, Sushiswap, Balancer, Art Blocks, DODO, Connext, and many others.

Utility Work Token: GRT

The Graph’s utility work token is called GRT and is the protocol's native cryptocurrency. GRT is an ERC20-based token and is primarily used for allocating resources in the network. Participants use GRT to maintain the economic security of the network and the integrity of the data queried. 

GRT incentivizes each participant in the ecosystem to collaborate and contribute towards a best-in-class indexing and querying experience for users of The Graph.

Delegators

Within The Graph Network, there are three key roles, each with their respective incentive structures that secure network decentralization and ensure the delivery of high-quality data. Delegators constitute one of these roles.

Delegators secure the network by delegating their GRT to Indexers. Delegation offers a means to participate in network security without the need for running a node or possessing technical expertise. By delegating, individuals increase the number of queries an Indexer can serve and enhance the overall integrity of the network. When choosing an Indexer, Delegators consider factors such as trustworthiness, community involvement within The Graph, quality of data served, and the Delegator rewards offered by the Indexer.

Indexers

Indexers stake GRT to operate indexing nodes and serve data queries. They select subgraphs to index on the network based on each subgraph’s curation signal, which is determined by how much GRT Curators stake with the subgraph. Indexers receive indexing rewards for indexing subgraphs and serving queries.

Curators

Curators play a vital role in The Graph ecosystem by discovering valuable and relevant subgraphs on the network. They signal their interest in particular subgraphs by staking GRT. A higher curation signal helps Indexers identify which subgraphs are worth indexing. By signaling on subgraphs, Curators receive a percentage of GRT rewards when those subgraphs begin to get indexed.

The Graph resources