Strategy Specification

@attestate/crawler defines a strategy interface that integrators can use to custom-build strategies.


If you’re interested in implementing a custom strategy, consider checking out the source of, a reference implementation of a strategy we try to keep continuously updated.


  • An extractor strategy’s purpose is to communicate with the extraction worker by passing canonical messages back and forth. The worker implements support for a variety of data sources including IPFS, Arweave, GraphQL and JSON-RPC.

  • All worker messages are defined using JSON schema. To look-up a message’s structure, visit this special folder in the crawler’s code base.

  • An extractor is an ESM module that exports a function init({ args, state, execute }) and a function update({ message }). Both must return an object that complies to the below outlined “Lifecycle Return Message.”

  • For every invocation of an extractor strategy, function init({ args, state, execute }) is called once upon initiation.

  • Subsequently, for every resolved message within messages: [...], function update({ message }) is called.

  • A strategy completes when either no new messages are in the worker’s queue or when an explicit type: "exit" message is sent to a worker.

  • config.path[].extractor.args is an object of values that the crawler passes into an extractor’s function init({ args, state, execute }).

Lifecycle Return Message:

Return values of function init({ args, state, execute }) and function update({ message }) must be a type of object that contain a messages: Array property and a write: String || null. write’s value is written directly into a flat file at config.path[] (line by line). All elements in messages are forwarded to the extraction worker. They are returned to function update({ message }) upon completion.

An example:

function init({ args, state, execute }) {
  return {
    // NOTE: We write hello world to a new line at ``.
    write: "hello world",
    // NOTE: We also fire a request to our Ethereum full node asking to
    //  download the event logs from block 0 to block 1 for the DAI stablecoin
    //  contract.
    messages: [
        type: "json-rpc",
        method: "eth_getLogs",
        params: [
            fromBlock: 0,
            toBlock: 1,
            address: "0x6B175474E89094C44Da98b954EedeAC495271d0F",
            topics: ["0xddf252ad1be2c89b69c2b068fc378daa952ba7f163c4a11628f55a4df523b3ef"]
        version: "0.0.1",
        options: {
          url: ""


  • A transformer’s purpose is to sanitize, rearrange, and filter data on the user’s file system after an extraction. The @attestate/crawler reads the config.path[] line-by-line and invokes the function onLine({ state }).

  • A transformer ESM module exports a function onLine({ state, args }) that must return an object containing a property write: String. It doesn’t trigger new extraction worker messages.

  • config.path[].transformer.args is an object of values that the crawler passes into a transformer’s function onLine({ state, args }). The line can be accessed through state.line.


Consider that running a transformer on extraction results is much cheaper than re-extracting data from external sources. So when building a new strategy, instead of making the extractor fail when an API has changed, ensure that the transformer fails as it’s cheap to re-run.


  • A loader’s purpose is to store and arrange crawler results in an efficiently queryable data storage format.

  • Attestate Crawler implements LMDB to enable direct storage access and creation of indices. To ensure proper sorting with LMDB, key values need to be formatted consistently by removing the “0x” prefix, serializing, and padding them.

  • A loader ESM module exports two generator functions function* direct({ state, args }) and function* order({ state, args }).

  • function* order({ state, args }) must yield an object { key: any, value: any } where key is chosen and arranged such that it can be lexographically ordered (e.g., an Ethereum transaction’s blockNumber and transactionIndex). The key values should be serialized and padded as needed. The line can be accessed through state.line.

  • function* direct({ state, args }) must yield an object { key: any, value: any } where key must be unique in the entire set (e.g., an Ethereum transactions transactionHash). The line can be accessed through state.line.

  • key and value must comply with the guidelines of the LMDB documentation.

Internally, the Attestate Crawler will create a new LMDB instance at config.path[] For each strategy, it’ll create “order” and “direct” tables from the following naming scheme

  • for order {config.path[]}:order and

  • for direct {config.path[]}:direct.

The yielded values for function* order() and function* direct() (key and value) will be stored in these database sub-tables accordingly.