At the conference going on every year, founder Vitalik Buterin outlined the improvements the development team will make for both the short and long term.

Vitalik Buterin – Founder Ethereum

Speaking on the main stage of EthCC on July 21 about the long-term future of the network, Vitalik announced Ethereum is in transition and development is only “40% done”.

According to him, there are five phases to the upcoming Ethereum development: The Merge, The Surge, The Verge, The Purge, and The Splurge.

The Merge scheduled to happen around September when Ethereum moves to . The Surge deals with implementing sharding. The Verge brings back the Verkle tree. The Purge will reduce the hard drive space required for the authenticator. The Splurge will roll out "all the other cool stuff".

Vitalik asserts that:

"The difference between and Ethereum are Bitcoiners completed 80%, but Etherean considers Ethereum to have only completed 40%.”

Merge test completed 90%

In five long-term phases aimed at improving the network's overall capabilities, the first phase in the program is The Merge. The co-founder says the work is done on 90% and only needs further testing on Ropsten.

With the protocol conversion from PoW to expected to launch later this year, he noted that most of the testing has already been done.

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In fact, only testing of The Merge on Ropsten remains, which will be "quite soon".

Recently, the 9th Shadow Fork went live, which means the beginning of the final testing phases of the update. At the time, one of Ethereum's top developers suggested that the event could take place as early as September of this year.

Buterin added that validators will be able to start withdrawing which they locked in the deposit contract after The Merge.

“After the update, you will be able to build an Ethereum client without even knowing the PoW phase has occurred.”

Buterin also mentioned another phase in Ethereum's roadmap, called The Surge, that will focus on increasing the network's scalability through sharding.

He noted that once this roadmap is over, Ethereum “will be able to process 100,000 transactions per second.” This would be a significant improvement over the current 15-20 trades.

More developments to follow after The Merge

After The Merge this year, Vitalik thinks "everyone who is working hard to create it will be very happy at this point". Sharding is coming next, bringing Ethereum “up to 100k transactions per second after a massive surge.”

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The next part of the roadmap is The Verge, which he predicts will take place "in 2023 or maybe 2024". With this information, Vitalik indicates sharding should be implemented on the Ethereum mainnet sometime in 2023.

The Ethereum founder discussed Ethereum's long-term future and how it should continue to increase "capability" while reducing "complexity".

Regarding The Verge and integrating Verkle trees, Vitalik posited the need to reduce the number of data validation nodes required to store, similarly citing that:

“No one will use the Bitorrent version if it asks users to download every movie.”

Currently, technology requires all nodes to keep a history of the whole , creating an ever-increasing demand for storage.

He asserts this will no longer be necessary as Ethereum grows. Target of should be “security and reliability”, while layer 2 to optimize “rapid action and repetition”.

EIP4444 will eliminate the need for nodes to keep track of the entire history of the Ethereum blockchain, and Vitalik believes that tools like The Graph will suffice to store past data. However, the protocol is not responsible for storing this information.

Vitalik argues people want scalability and decentralization, so you can't ask nodes to store ever-increasing data.

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During development, Vitalik emphasized the need to focus on “upgrading quantum resistance”, increasing transaction space in the base layer if ZK-EVM “works well”, adopting new cryptocurrencies.” better” and “have a liberal, unbiased opinion”.

In the vision of a simpler, more condensed version of the Ethereum protocol, there must be enough time, effort, and ability to understand the entire protocol. According to Vitalik, the current school of thought is "it's okay if the average person can't understand the protocol because we can specialize". This mindset doesn't fit with Vitalik's Ethereum future.

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