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ETH 2.0, What is it?

ETH 2.0

Ethereum 2.0, also known as Serenity, is a massive upgrade to the Ethereum blockchain that will bring about many changes. These changes include sharding, proof-of-stake, and moving EVM to eWASM. These upgrades are essential because they will make Ethereum faster, more scalable, and more secure. This post will discuss why Ethereum 2.0 is important and why it may affect you.

Current Model

Ethereum’s current blockchain is based on the proof-of-work (PoW) consensus algorithm. This means that miners compete against each other to validate blocks of transactions and are rewarded with ETH for their efforts. While PoW is a secure and tried-and-true consensus algorithm, it has some drawbacks. For one, it is very energy intensive, as miners need to use powerful computers to solve complex mathematical problems. Additionally, PoW is not very scalable, as the more transactions there are on the blockchain, the slower it becomes.

Ethereum 2.0 and its features

Eth 2.0 will be launched in 3 phases:

Phase 0: Beacon Chain & PoS Framework

Phase 1: Sharding

Phase 2:The Merge

The upgrade will implement a new consensus algorithm called proof-of-stake (PoS). With PoS, instead of miners competing against each other, they will stake their ETH to validate blocks. This means that it will be less energy intensive. Additionally, Ethereum plans to implement sharding, a way of partitioning the blockchain so that each node only needs to process a portion of the transactions. This will further improve scalability. Finally, Ethereum plans to upgrade its virtual machine (EVM) to eWASM. This will allow for more efficient smart-contract execution and could potentially make Ethereum’s blockchain even more secure.

Phase 0

Beacon Chain & PoS Framework

In December 2020, Phase 0 trial went live, touching on three main technological advancements to the Ethereum Ecosystem. These are; the Beacon Chain, the PoS consensus mechanism (aka Casper), and the rework of validator nodes.

So what is Beacon Chain?

Think of the Beacon Chain as the Eye of Sauron, a tower built on top of a sea of data. Instead of looking for hobbits, it is constantly validating, scanning, collecting votes, penalizing malicious actors, and rewarding validators that correctly attest to blocks.

Beacon Chain is the constructor and coordinator of the new network. It is responsible for creating new blocks, validating them, and handing our rewards to validators to ensure that the network is secure, making it a core structure for ETH 2.0.

PoS Framework

Ethereum plans to move from a proof-of-work (POW) consensus algorithm to a proof-of-stake (POS) algorithm. POW algorithms require miners to solve complex mathematical puzzles to add new blocks of transactions to the blockchain. In contrast, POS algorithms allow users to validate blocks of transactions in proportion to their stake in the network. There are several advantages to moving to a POS algorithm:

  1. It would be more energy-efficient, as POW algorithms require a lot of electricity to run.
  2. It would be more secure, as it would be harder for 51% of attacks (where one group of miners try to control most of the network) to succeed.
  3. It would be faster, as POS algorithms can confirm transactions faster than POW algorithms.
  4. It would be more decentralized, as POS algorithms do not give an advantage to large mining pools.

Hurray for faster, more secure, and cheaper transactions!

Phase 1

Sharding

Sharding is a new feature that Ethereum 2.0 will introduce. It is an important part of the Ethereum 2.0 roadmap as it will revolutionize the industry. Sharding is a technique for splitting data into shards so that a different machine can process each shard. This allows for scalability by increasing the number of transactions processed at any given time.

Sharding is important because it will allow Ethereum to scale to meet mainstream users’ needs. The Ethereum network is currently limited to processing around 15 transactions per second. This is far too low to support mainstream applications. Sharding will increase the number of transactions processed per second to hundreds or even thousands. This will make Ethereum more competitive with traditional payment processors such as Visa and Mastercard.

Sharding is also crucial because it enables more efficient data storage on the blockchain. Today, the Ethereum blockchain stores all data on every node in the network. This can lead to scalability problems as the blockchain grows. With sharding, only a subset of data is stored on each node, which reduces the storage requirements for nodes and allows for faster processing of transactions.

With this upgrade, Ethereum 2.0 will be able to spread the network load across 64 different shards making the network faster and more scalable.

Phase 2

The Merge aka “Docking”

Once phase 1 is complete, the plan is to merge or “dock” Eth 1.0 with the Beacon Chain and its accompanying architecture of shard chains. Eth 1.0 will be one of the 64 shard chains and will operate using the new PoS protocol. The Eth 1.0 shard will act as the history of the current state of Ethereum onto the Beacon Chain, which will make the transition smoother.

Let’s consider an analogy. Imagine Ethereum is a spaceship that isn’t quite ready for an interstellar voyage. With the Beacon Chain, the community has built a new engine and a hardened hull. After significant testing, it’s almost time to hot-swap the new engine for the old mid-flight. This will merge the new, more efficient engine into the existing ship, ready to put in some serious lightyears and take on the universe. — Taken from ethereum.org

EVM to eWASM

Ethereum is set to move from the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) to Ethereum-flavoured WebAssembly (eWASM). This will have numerous benefits for Ethereum users and developers. eWASM is a more efficient instruction set, meaning that Ethereum contracts will be cheaper to deploy and run. In addition, eWASM is designed to be more developer-friendly, with better support for programming languages such as Rust and C++. Ethereum’s move to eWASM will also make it more compatible with other blockchains already using WASM, such as EOS and Polkadot. Ultimately, this will make Ethereum a more attractive platform for developers and users.

How does ETH 2.0 affect pNetwork?

Ethereum 2.0 will affect pNetwork and projects currently on the Ethereum network in a few ways.

First, it will provide a much faster and more efficient way to run contracts and transactions on the network. This will make it easier for projects to use the Ethereum network as a platform for their operations.

Second, Ethereum 2.0 will provide a more secure platform for running contracts and transactions. This will make it less likely for projects to experience security breaches or other issues on the network.

Finally, Ethereum 2.0 will help to promote interoperability between different blockchain projects. This will make it easier for projects to work together and exchange data and value seamlessly.

Conclusion

Overall, Ethereum’s upcoming upgrades are very exciting and have the potential to make it the most dominant blockchain platform in the world. Ethereum’s current proof-of-work consensus algorithm is not very scalable or efficient. Sharding and proof-of-stake will allow Ethereum to scale to meet mainstream users’ needs. In addition, eWASM will enable more efficient smart contract execution. These upgrades are important and will make Ethereum faster, more scalable, and more secure.

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