- Lead Ethereum developer Vitalik Buterin has answered key questions regarding the network’s progress and future expectations.
- The Merge will be completed around June, while the rest of the year will focus on implementing the sharding technology, in addition to other solutions.
Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin has spoken about the network’s future expectations in a recent AMA. Last year’s highlights included three major hard forks, namely Berlin, Altair, and London – all significant to the success of The Merge.
Vitalik speaks of Ethereum 2022 goals
Vitalik now asserts that The Merge (consolidation) is 2022’s most important focus. Thereafter, scalability will be Ethereum’s pivot. Here, the network plans to utilize both roll-up technology and sharding to cut down transaction fees to the lowest possible. Sharding, in addition to other short-term solutions such as EIP-4488, will also cut down the expenses of storing data on-chain.
Network progress is now at 50 percent, according to Vitalik, and this is bound to rise to 80 percent following consolidation and improvement of scalability. He gave a lot of technical details about the specific progress of The Merge, but generally, it is likely to reach completion in June.
According to a roadmap released by Vitalik last December, Ethereum is to undergo five “Urges” to improve functionality. The first is The Merge and the second is The Surge, which revolves around sharding implementation. The third is the Verge, which will ease validating the Ethereum chain and running a node. Fourth is The Purge where unnecessary historical things will be deleted to simplify the protocol. Last is The Splurge which involves a number of upgrades such as account abstraction and EVM upgrades. Of all these, Vitalik says the first two are the most significant for Ethereum.
As for layer-two technologies such as Optimism and Arbitrum, Vitalik recognizes their significant contribution in relieving users of the gas fee burden. However, he notes that they lack decentralization, which is a fraud-proof technique. This and other technical problems are currently being worked on, and it could be another year before their complete resolution.
Another issue the developer recognizes is the security risks between cross-chain bridges, which he says are more complicated than those plaguing cross-rollup bridges. A recent example is a vulnerability on the Solana-Ethereum Wormhole bridge that led to the loss of $320M. Like many other issues on the network, there is a team also working on this challenge.
Vitalik once again expressed his disapproval of token voting systems, in addition to acknowledging the transaction cost issues facing decentralized organizations such as cityDAO. The former lets people vote on different cryptocurrencies so that they can invest in the most promising ones before their listing on leading token trackers like Coingecko and CoinMarketCap.
All the issues Vitalik notes comprise what he has previously articulated as the blockchain trilemma; achieving decentralization, scalability, and security all at the same time.
Finally, Buterin spoke of the impact blockchain and cryptocurrencies have on various world crises. Some of the solutions this technology offers include secondary fundraising, new ways of governance, and growth in terms of blockchain ecology.