August 16, 2022


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  • Vitalik Buterin said that blockchain applications will need to prove their usefulness rather than promise that they could be useful in the future in the next 10 years.
  • Buterin also said that he expects some of the optimistic cumulative projects that are scaling Ethereum today to adopt ZK-Rollups due to its “core advantages.”
  • He added that Ethereum will need to upgrade to protect itself from quantum computing attacks in the future, but it could take a few decades for any upgrades to be needed.

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Buterin reiterated his view that ZK-Rollups are likely the best weapon for Ethereum’s second layer expansion, and said that quantum computing will be an important consideration for the protocol in the future.

Buterin on the Ethereum future

Vitalik Buterin is optimistic about the future of Ethereum, but believes that there are big challenges ahead.

The creator of Ethereum discussed the long-term future of the protocol at a closed press conference ahead of it BUIDL ASIA And the EthSeoul Today, focusing on measurement technology, quantum computing, and important hurdles faced by the network.

Buterin said the next decade will be crucial for blockchain technology, arguing that applications will soon need to prove their usefulness in an open market. “I think the next 10 years is the time when cryptography should turn into something that isn’t based on promises to be useful in the future but is actually useful,” he said. “Because a lot of the applications are promising in theory, but they are not quite viable because of the scaling issues today.” He added that if a blockchain implementation fails to function once Ethereum completes its “merging” with Proof-of-Stake and zero-knowledge proof-of-knowledge technology, there is a good chance it “doesn’t make sense” to use the blockchain in the first place.

Elaborating on the scaling issues Ethereum is facing, Buterin expressed enthusiasm for the next wave of Layer 2 accumulation solutions, taking the position that ZK-Rollups based on zero-knowledge proof will prevail over optimism. Rollups are superior technology, albeit deceptive. “In the long run, ZK-Rollups will eventually outperform Optimistic Rollups because they have these primary advantages, such as not requiring a seven-day withdrawal period,” he said, before commenting on the difficulties of building ZK-Rollups. “ZK is a technology that is difficult to build. There are a lot of challenges, and Optimistic Rollup technology is becoming more and more mature.” Buterin explained that he is still confident in the success of some of the optimistic cumulative projects today, but he expected that some projects will play a pivotal role in the future. “They are going to do a great job. But I fully expect that eventually, they will switch to ZK at some point.”

Ethereum “full”

Buterin also commented on how Ethereum will be “complete” in the deep future following his recent comments at the EthCC in Paris, where he announced that Ethereum will be “55% complete” after the merger. “After the big items– you know, merge, rush, purge, edge, avenue – Ethereum will basically be in a place where the protocol doesn’t need to change. Everything can be done in Layer 2. ”

Buterin added a caveat that Ethereum will need to account for developments in quantum computing sometime in the distant future. “We have to upgrade at some point for the sake of quantum safety,” he said, and he is considering switching to “new forms of encryption” that would resist potential attacks. Crypto skeptics have repeatedly pointed out that quantum computing could wipe out blockchains, but Buterin said it will take some time before crypto builders need to make changes. “We are constantly In very close contact with AI researchers who continue to work on this problem and create better algorithms. “But that’s a long way off, and it could be 10, 20, 30 years from now.”

Disclosure: At the time of writing, the author of this article owns ETH and several other cryptocurrencies.

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