Cardano (whose token is ADA) is an evolving and ongoing project developed by IOHK. IOHK’s latest accomplishment is, in simple terms, the implementation of a test network for Cardano smart contracts.This is the second of such testnets, the first was for KEVM.
Essentially a test network (“testnet”) is a platform where developers can test out software, and in this case it is a platform for a virtual machine called IELE (pronounced YELL-eh; a name that refers to nymphs in Romanian mythology). IELE is designed to run Cardano’s smart contracts (like Ethereum smart contracts; computer programs that execute programs based on conditions… like a computerized version of a real contract, but super flexible).
Thus, the end result is a platform for testing out Cardano’s smart contracts.
That is the gist… but also, there is little point in me explaining when you can get it explained to you by the IOHK team. So without further ado, a link to that: Cardano smart contracts testnet IELE launches Developers can run programs with increased confidence.