Vitalik Buterin proposes “Multi-Dimensional EIP-1559” to solve sub-optimal gas fees on Ethereum

  • Vitalik Buterin, co-founder and lead developer at Ethereum, has proposed what he calls the “multi-dimensional EIP-1559” to solve transaction cost issues.
  • The proposal is pending approval by the community, whose attendance at the moment is directed to the upcoming ETH 2.0.

Once again, the lead developer of the Ethereum network, Vitalik Buterin, has offered his insight into another way the network could improve its gas fee predicament.

The “Multi-dimensional EIP-1559” proposal as Buterin calls it, has been provided in detail in a Jan. 5 blog post. The proposal banks on the fact that different resources on the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) demand different levels of gas use. Buterin noted that there are different limits for short-term “burst” capacity in comparison to “sustained” capacity in the EVM. Here, he cited examples of block data storage, witness data storage, and block state size changes.

The scheme we have today, where all resources are combined into a single multidimensional resource (‘gas’), does a poor job at handling these differences.

When these different resources are treated as one in terms of Ethereum gas usage, the misalignment in limits results in “very sub-optimal gas costs,” Buterin adds.

Related: Vitalik Buterin discusses key updates for Ethereum 2.0 launch in 2022

New proposal to cut down Ethereum gas fees

The rest of the proposal contains an outline in technical math and jargon. But in essence, the proposal offers two potential solutions using what Buterin calls “multi-dimensional” pricing.

In August last year, Ethereum introduced EIP-1559 as part of the London upgrade. This increased gas fee prediction by offering a fixed base fee. Moreover, since its launch, 1.36 million ETH (approximately $4.7 billion at current prices) has been burned, according to the burn tracker.

Read More: It’s finally here: Ethereum’s London upgrade launches, $174M already burned in a day

Now, the first solution provided by Buterin banks on this upgrade. It suggests the base fee for each unit of resource (e.g. call data and storage) be divided by the total base fee. Theoretically, this would result in a fraction of the initial fee.

The second more complex solution also utilizes base fees but includes burst limits on each resource. It would also have “priority fees” obtained by multiplying a certain percentage and the base fee.

The drawback in Multi-Dimensional pricing

The weakness of this whole system, according to Buterin, is that “block builders would not be able to simply accept transactions in high-to-low order of fee-per-gas.” Rather, they would have to balance dimensions and solve additional mathematical puzzles.

Whether the community will pass the proposal is unclear at the moment, seeing as much of their attention is focused on ETH 2.0. Docking of the Ethereum MainNet onto the Proof-of-Stake (PoS) beacon chain, popularly known as “the merge,” is expected to occur in the first half of 2022, per an earlier statement from Buterin. Currently, testing is taking place on the Kintsugi testnet.

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