According to Github data shared by Cardano updates, the Cardano node 1.35.3 has been released. As reported by U.Today, Cardano founder Charles Hoskinson, while making brief comments on Vasil, mentioned the new node v.1.35.3 as the likely candidate for the hard fork. Hoskinson also added that he "doesn't anticipate any further delays unless anything new is discovered."
As stated in the developer notes: "Node 1.35.3 fixes some important issues with previous versions of the node and provides some CLI enhancements. The node provides full Vasil-era capabilities." It was also noted that "None of the (known) issues were considered to be blockers for the mainnet hard fork as they would be addressed in future releases."
The IOG team hard forked the Cardano testnet to Vasil functionality on July 3. After the announcement of the testnet hard fork, development progressed with the initial node v.1.35.0. The IOG teams then moved on to work on nodes v.1.35.1 and v.1.35.2 after bugs were found.
In late July, during the Cardano 360 event, Kevin Hammond, IOG's technical manager, stated there could be a few more weeks of delay without stating a specific date for the release. This, he says, was necessary for further testing and ensuring a smooth process.
The much-anticipated Vasil hard fork remains one of the most significant updates for Cardano to date. This is because Vasil hopes to bring significant improvements to Cardano and its Plutus smart contracts.
Here's Cardano's main value driver per ADA whale
Main value driver for $ADA is the fact it plays a critical role in a digital economic network adopted by >1m people who trust the network’s security, yield, monetary supply, growth prospects and will therefore accept it as a (digital) medium of exchange.— ADA whale (@cardano_whale) August 11, 2022
For the Cardano-focused Twitter account, ADA whale, what drives value in ADA may not be TPS (transaction per second) or DeFi TVL (total value locked) but rather the "main value driver for ADA is the fact it plays a critical role in a digital economic network adopted by >1m people who trust the network’s security, yield, monetary supply, growth prospects and will therefore accept it as a (digital) medium of exchange."
Cardano was noted to be "priced aggressively" in Messari's recent market report.