Speaking at the DevCon 4 in Prague, Vitalik Buterin announced the path to Ethereum 2.0.
He also stated that he will now refer Ethereum 2.0 as ‘Serenity‘, which will have an upgrade called Casper, and will involve sharding. Serenity is a “combination of a bunch of different features”, he said, which includes Casper, sharding, and EWASM.
One problem with Ethereum is the scalability issue since it works on a proof-of-work algorithm. Scalability is the ability of a system to continue to function as it gets bigger. The drawback of this system is that it is CPU intensive which increases as the system develops.
Casper is supposed to solve this issue. Ethereum can currently manage around 15 transactions per second, but Vitalik wishes to make it 1 million.
Power of Casper
In the proof-of-stake system, the more tokens that a node owns, the more chance it has of winning the race to verify the next block. But it has two limitations – it mostly serves the rich; and that the nodes will sign on every single block instead of those that are most likely to continue because the activity does not carry any risk.
Casper solved this problem by requiring nodes to ‘stake’ tokens – which means put them aside in a dedicated wallet. These are the tokens that are counted. Casper was then upgraded to Casper FFG, which combines proof-of-work and proof-of-stake. Proof-of-work would kick in every 50 blocks, which is an advantage because this is the best way to maintain the integrity of the blockchain. This ties into the idea of sharding.
Buterin said: “The proof-of-stake chain would be aware of the block hashes of the proof-of-work blockchain. You would be able to move ether from the proof-of-work chain into the proof-of-stake chain.”
When Ethereum finally upgrades to Serenity and proof-of-stake, it is relying on a ‘difficulty bomb’ to prevent the system forking. This will make verifying transactions on the original blockchain so difficult that it won’t be worth pursuing.
After revealing the big news, Vitalik Buterin left the Ethereum community in mystery after not revealing the date of the update.
Link to the complete news article can be found here.