Image: Coin Switch
After eight years of operation, the Ethereum blockchain has finally moved to a new transaction verification method known as Proof of Stake. The maintenance update, The Merge, was completed on Thursday, September 15. The Merge has drastically reduced the amount of energy used by the network and allows Ethereum to lower transaction fees and significantly expand its user base.
And we finalized!— vitalik.eth (@VitalikButerin) September 15, 2022
Happy merge all. This is a big moment for the Ethereum ecosystem. Everyone who helped make the merge happen should feel very proud today.
“It’s hard to compare it to the genesis day in 2015, but it may end up being more significant,” says Joe Lubin, a co-founder of Ethereum and founder of the blockchain company Consensys, according to Time. “It basically takes us into an infinite-transaction-per-second throughput architecture…It’s about to go internet-scale.”
Ethereum was launched in 2015, but key developers started looking into how to implement Proof of Stake a year before. And although the transition from Proof of Work took many years, the success of The Merge serves as a victory for Ethereum and its decentralized structure. The network does not have a board of directors or a CEO, but a group of disparate developers and engineers working together from all over the world. Leaderless collaboration is a central principle of blockchains, and Ethereum developers have proven their ability to self-organize, painstakingly moving towards an extremely technical upgrade for many years.
The Merge was designed in such a way that Ethereum users themselves do not need to do anything: their accounts will be updated automatically. On Thursday morning, developers signaled that The Merge had produced few if any, major bugs.
Of the losers from this transition are Proof of Work miners, who performed an energy-intensive process with large data centers. They invested in equipment that is now useless. As a result, some of these miners launched their own token called ETHW, which is still working by Proof of Work.
© 2022, Eva Fox | Tesmanian. All rights reserved.
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About the Author
Eva Fox joined Tesmanian in 2019 to cover breaking news as an automotive journalist. The main topics that she covers are clean energy and electric vehicles. As a journalist, Eva is specialized in Tesla and topics related to the work and development of the company.