The immutability of smart contract code is yet another advantage of Web3 products over Web2. Often, when this is mentioned, it's implied that the logic written into a smart contract won't be covertly changed, and the creators of the protocol can't manipulate things to deceive their users. This is indeed the case for protocols like Uniswap, Yearn, and many others. Versions of these protocols operate unchanged for years, and even when a new protocol is introduced, the old one continues to function.
Blockchain technology is often lauded for its immutable nature. However, there's a concept known as "upgradeable," which provides developers the flexibility to modify the code of smart contracts. This allows for a comprehensive redefinition of the contract's logic, while preserving the original data.
One might wonder, doesn't this counteract the foundational principle of blockchain's permanence? And would this compromise users' trust in the system?
To provide transparency, developers often make the smart contract code accessible via block explorers. Within this code, both proxy contracts and the primary logic are visible. While individuals with a technical background can easily identify this "upgradeability", average users can reference audits where this feature will be distinctly highlighted.
The upgradeability of smart contracts offers significant advantages. It facilitates better optimization, efficient error rectification, and enhances user experience. If a potential vulnerability is identified, proactive measures can be taken before any malicious exploit occurs, reinforcing user confidence.
Moreover, the prerogative to upgrade isn't exclusive to developers. Through mechanisms like a DAO (Decentralized Autonomous Organization), the broader community can suggest, endorse, and even implement modifications.
For those who might be apprehensive about fully integrating with a DAO, yet value both upgradeability and user trust, a prudent approach would be to delineate a roadmap. This can specify conditions under which the upgrade feature might be limited or introduce a version sans this capability.