Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin has outlined an ambitious set of proposals for the Ethereum network, focusing on addressing crucial issues such as staking centralization, scalability, and enhancing security. During an interview with the NFT platform Defiant in Turkey, Buterin highlighted the need for an overhaul of Ethereum’s staking mechanism to improve decentralization.
“We need to foster healthier staking pools,” he emphasized, adding that one of the biggest changes “is the realization that there needs to something done about staking centralization, the status quo of the different pools […] is not very healthy, and I think there is a big opportunity to do some redesigns in the staking system to alleviate some of these issues.”
Major Changes For Ethereum
Buterin also discussed the upcoming EIP-4844 upgrade, known as Danksharding. “This upgrade will increase the data map space to 16 Megabytes per slot,” he explained, stressing its importance for improving Ethereum’s scalability and efficiency.
He also stated:
In general on scaling I feel like the pendulum has slightly moved back to off-chain data stuff because […] the level of security you can get with off-chain stuff. The Plasma ideas that I talked about a few days ago are a good example. Also, [we are] still moving forward on Merkle tree, SNARKs, all the EVM improvement things. […] But nothing new on the functionality side.
Additionally, he proposed a voting system for future network changes, aiming to democratize the process and potentially eliminate the need for hard forks. Buterin also delved into advanced concepts like private mempools, ERC-4337, code pre-compilation, and Zero-Knowledge Ethereum Virtual Machines (ZK-EVMs). He underscored the importance of these features in enhancing network performance and user security.
Additionally, he advocated for reducing dependence on centralized servers, promoting software advancements like the Portal Network and Helios for a more decentralized peer-to-peer network. “Our aim is to empower users to independently verify data, moving away from reliance on centralized nodes,” he said.
Buterin Is Optimistic
Revisiting the concept of Plasma, a scaling solution co-invented with Joseph Poon, Buterin noted its enhanced compatibility with complex systems due to the integration of Zero-Knowledge Succinct Non-Interactive Arguments of Knowledge (ZK-SNARKs).
Overall, Buterin concluded with an optimistic outlook, celebrating Ethereum’s successful transition to proof-of-stake and highlighting progress in scalability solutions and security advancements. The proposed changes are expected to make Ethereum more scalable, secure, and efficient, potentially lowering barriers for new users and developers, and fostering a more inclusive and robust ecosystem.
He stated, “I am excited by the fact that there is finally a light at the tunnel on all the hard things. […] Like the Merge happened, the scalability solutions are happening [Arbitrum, zk-Sync] […] And light at the tunnel on Dank-Sharding. I think the fact that we have both, Dank-Sharding and Plasma, is a big load off my shoulders as well because only one of these needs to succeed for Ethereum to be scalable.”
At press time, ETH traded at $2,023.