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Vitalik Believes Ethereum Is Halfway To Completion

Though Ethereum has been delayed several times on its way to v2.0, its founder remains optimistic. Vitalik Buterin recently told the Bankless podcast that he thinks the network is “50% of the way there” in upgrades. In addition, he outlined a 5 step process by which he sees it reaching its “Endgame” – a follow-up to his recent article.

5 Stages To Success

Vitalik broke down Ethereum’s roadmap into five easy-to-remember stages. These are the Merge, the Surge, the Verge, the Purge, and the Splurge. They generally focus on making Ethereum scalable and decentralized enough to reach maximum adoption.

The Merge

The Merge refers to Ethereum 2.0, entailing a transition from proof-of-work to proof-of-stake. The Ethereum Foundation has planned to implement this upgrade for years now, but it suffers delays. Even Vitalik has admitted to being dead wrong about the promotion being implemented within only two years. Nevertheless, he maintains that it should be in place before July 2022.

Bitcoin was supposed to change the world. What happened? - Vox
Vitalik Buterin. Source: Vox

The Surge

The next stage – the Surge – will focus on increasing Ethereum’s scalability through rollups. Vitalik has shown interest in implementing this solution, which puts “computation and storage off-chain” while “data stays on-chain”. This is very similar to Bitcoin’s lightning network, used by Twitter to host Bitcoin tipping. The network processes transactions in private payment channels before settling them all together on the base layer.

After this, Vitalik believes Ethereum will be 80% complete, considering the most important upgrades. He expects the remaining 20% of progress to take about six years.

The Verge, Purge, and Splurge

Next, the Verge will feature Merkle trees, which will help more nodes join the Ethereum network to verify the blockchain’s validity. Running an Ethereum archive node is very difficult, with 70% running through Infura and AWS alone. With this upgrade, Vitalik says one may run nodes on the phone.

The Purge will involve removing redundant historical blockchain data from Ethereum’s nodes. Finally, the Splurge refers to various miscellaneous upgrades and final touches, including “ZK snarking everything”.

The 27-year old believes that all blockchains will eventually converge, allowing for decentralized and censorship-resistant block verification.

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In August of 2020, Vitalik told Peter McCormack that he thought Ethereum was “40-60%” complete. He pointed out how Bitcoiners, by comparison, tend to view their protocol as 80% complete.

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