Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) is the runtime environment for smart contracts in Ethereum. The EVM is designed to be a decentralized and secure platform for executing smart contracts and dApps, and it plays a crucial role in the functioning of the Ethereum blockchain.
Many blockchain platforms aim to be EVM-compliant because Ethereum is one of the most widely used and well-established blockchain platforms. Being EVM-compliant allows these other platforms to be compatible with Ethereum and interact with it in various ways. For example, a blockchain platform that is EVM-compliant can deploy and run smart contracts that were written for Ethereum, allowing developers to build applications that can be used on both platforms. Additionally, being EVM-compliant can make it easier for developers to build applications that can be used on multiple blockchain platforms. Since, they only need to write the smart contract once, it will be compatible with all EVM-compliant platforms. This can reduce developers’ work to build applications that can be used on multiple platforms and make it easier for users to access and use these applications.
Figure: EVM sits on top of the hardware/node infrastructure of the Blockchain
EVM as a piece of code that reside on top of the node infrastructure of the blockchain as described in the Figure 1. The EVM acts as a virtual machine that executes the smart contract code, and it ensures that the code is executed in a secure and predictable manner. It provides a secure and decentralized platform for developers to build and deploy their dApps and smart contracts, and it is essential for the functioning of the Ethereum blockchain.
EVM compatibility enable many popular networks like Avalanche, Binance Smart Chain, Polygon, Solana, Harmony and Fantom to become highly successful due to compatibility with the Ethereum network.
The Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) is often referred to as a " distributed state machine " because it maintains a global state that is distributed across all the nodes in the Ethereum network. This global state is the collective record of all the transactions and smart contracts that have been executed on the Ethereum blockchain.
The EVM maintains the state of the blockchain by executing transactions and updating the global state in a deterministic and consistent manner. This ensures that all the nodes in the network have the same view of the blockchain and can come to a consensus about the current state of the network.
Overall, being EVM-compliant can help increase the interoperability and compatibility of different blockchain platforms, benefiting developers and users.
For more information on EVM, please read my earlier article @ https://forum.dltlabs.com/t/all-you-need-to-know-about-evm-as-a-core-of-ethereum/333?u=barnali_gupta_banik
 Ethereum Yellow Paper: a formal specification of Ethereum, a programmable blockchain