Questions about the future of Ethereum – Launched in 2015, Ethereum has shaken up the crypto landscape with its smart contract blockchain. As it develops, the protocol, which was intended to be minimalist at its core, continues to add new features. A change in philosophy that has recently been addressed by Vitalik Buterin.
Ethereum philosophy: from a minimalist protocol to all-in-one
As we have just discussed, Ethereum saw his philosophy evolve over time. Like Bitcoin, Ethereum was initially imagined as a minimalist fundamental layer. The complex functionalities were intended to be developed above the protocol, in particular via the Layers 2.
However, as pointed out Vitalik Buterin in a recent publication on his blog, faced with the generalization of the problems encountered by users, a interest has emerged in integrating specific features into the core of Ethereum.
Indeed, exchange of digital assets, privacy, usernames, advanced cryptography, account security or even resistance to censorship, are all subjects that are shared by different solutions evolving in the Ethereum ecosystem.
Thus, their integration into the basic protocol can prove interesting for many projects. However, this implies a profound philosophical shift in the development of Ethereum.
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Features that could join the heart of Ethereum
During his explanation, Vitalik Buterin takes the example of several features that could be integrated into Ethereum.
Firstly, Buterin addresses the elephant in the room, namely the Liquid Staking. Indeed, this functionality introduced by protocols such as Lido generates a significant centralization.
Thus, the integration of Liquid Staking into the Ethereum protocol could make it possible to standardize practices and increase security, all without compromising the decentralization of the protocol.
Secondly, Vitalik Buterin addresses the zk-EVM. These are potentially candidates for addition to the Ethereum code. Indeed, there are already several implementations of zk-EVM. They each have their own way of approaching problems. Unification would be possible by integrating, for example, execution verification at the Ethereum level.
“Since these L2 ZK-EVMs use the exact same EVM as Ethereum, can’t we somehow make “checking EVM running in ZK” a feature of the protocol, and deal with exceptional situations? like bugs and updates by simply enforcing Ethereum’s social consensus, the same way we already do for running the base layer EVM itself? »
In practice, these solutions are still actively debated by the community and developers. However, it is essential that all stakeholders agree to define the framework of functionalities that should, or should not, be implemented natively on Ethereum.
At the same time, the network is preparing to experience its next evolution via the hard fork Cancun. This will allow an improvement in the performance of second-layer solutions.
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