Decentralization And Privacy After The Big Ethereum Merge
The Ethereum Merge is almost here after seven years of study and development. The Merge will eventually convert Ethereum from Proof-of-Work (PoW) to Proof-of-Stake, a major accomplishment (PoS). I force everyone to listen to the entire episode, but I wanted to take this chance to highlight what I consider to be the most crucial takeaways from the discussion between the two titans of the industry.
The switch to PoS was not immediately apparent. Even if the concept can seem terrifying, like a pond full of sharks, once you figure out the sharks, you at least know what you’re up against, which makes it possible to deal with the issue, as Vitalik put it.
I try to explain the additive vs multiplicative notation issue for elliptic curves, and get a little bit into the question of what to do with the GT group. https://t.co/KenJDRUYjh
— vitalik.eth (@VitalikButerin) September 18, 2022
Engineers and scientists are both required. Amazing researchers like Vitalik do the hard work of pushing the boundaries of what is possible. Still, it is up to the builders to take the lead, market the products, and make the technology accessible to millions of consumers.
Centralized projects are born in happy times. Up to a bear market, bull markets tip the scales in favor of practicality over principles. The truth is that principles aren’t just principles; they also influence choices that maintain the security of projects and builders’ attitudes. Lower in the stack, decentralization is essential. Everything built on top of a broken or damaged foundation layer also breaks.
On PoS, Ethereum is more dependable and decentralized. In contrast to mining, anyone may launch an Ethereum validator globally with much less funding and technical expertise. A computer with an internet connection is all you require.
Ethereum will keep its infrastructure operations decentralized. Block-level censorship will be impossible with Proposer-Builder Separation since validators won’t be able to communicate preferences on the contents of the blocks they create.
OFAC took the first DeFi-related action. Several organizations (CoinCenter, EFF, CCI, etc.) have questioned if the recent Tornado Cash move, which marks the first time OFAC has sanctioned a technology (smart contract), was an overreach of OFAC’s power.
Merge gives decentralization top priority for Ethereum’s basic layer. As was previously noted, decentralization is crucial at the bottom of the stack, and Ethereum’s base layer is the lowest. We would prefer to reduce our staking activity in the hypothetical case where it is required to censor to protect the integrity of the network as a whole.
The problem of privacy can be solved. Through technology advancements that permit user privacy while reducing privacy for criminals, we can address many privacy concerns. The future we want must be created. It doesn’t just appear by magic. You must create “things”! Decentralized identity must be formed; it won’t materialize if cryptocurrency succeeds.
It’s important to promote culture and values. Leaders must promote cultural unity around a set of values regardless of how decentralized or centralized the group is. Without nurturing, unpleasant traits could emerge and split a group.
The cryptocurrency industry is international. The world is transitioning to a global perspective, and cryptocurrency has already arrived. There are still issues to be resolved. Choosing and constructing the greatest money, the “freedom stack,” e-charter cities, virtual reality, the environment, and other things is necessary. There is still more to be developed. Thus we must keep cooperating to advance the crypto industry, expand the ecosystem, and maintain our unwavering optimism.