In the recent Beyond Block Taipei 2017 conference, held in Taiwan, Vitalik Buterin unveiled his plans for Ethereum 2.0. The roadmap shows that he is trying to reach VISA-level scalability in the next 3-5 years.
Buterin and other developers already touched on this topic at the Devcon3 conference in Mexico, but the new specific details provided were more interesting.
Buterin opened with the statement: ”The Ethereum killer is Ethereum, the Ethereum of China is Ethereum, the Ethereum of Taiwan is Ethereum… 2.0.”
He was quick to point out that the main problems faced by Ethereum today are privacy, reliability of consensus, reliability of smart contracts, and scalability.
For the first three points, Buterin is ready to provide solutions that are already being developed. So, in order to increase the level of privacy of transactions, zk-SNARKs technology support was integrated into the Byzantium hard fork. To solve the issue of reliability of consensus, the Casper project is being developed, the main purpose of which is to replace the existing proof-of-work mechanism with proof-of-stake. Buterin noted that changing the consensus mechanism is a prerequisite for the future development of Ethereum. The reliability of smart contracts will be provided by Viper technology and a formal verification procedure.
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However, the most significant problem was and still is the issue of the scalability of the system. Vitalik explained that the main difficulty is the simultaneous combination of three components: decentralization, scalability, and security. Creating a system that combines two of the three components does not cause problems while keeping all three is likely to remain a major challenge for developers for a long time to come.
According to Buterin, Ethereum should scale to thousands of transactions per second, without using the master nodes. He sees the solution to the problem in ‘sharding’ technology, which will allow the creation of additional chains with their own rules and changes, while in the main block of Ethereum only the most significant of them will enter.
Buterin said: ”The way I generally describe sharding is… you can think of it as, in a fairly simple version, creating a blockchain where you have, lets say, a hundred different universes and each of these universes is a different account space.”
He added: “So you can have an account in some universe or you can have a contract in some universe and you can send a transaction in some universe and if you send a transaction in some universe it only affects stuff in some universe.”
The timeline for the roadmap is around 3-5 years. However, even now, some of the updates are beginning to take shape, allowing users to count on their speedy implementation.
On a side note, Ethereum is soaring this week, breaking all records. It marked an all-time high beyond $490, and judging by the market trend, it is very likely that the token will touch the $500 mark soon.