Happy fifth birthday to Ethereum. What did it learn

Like any anthropomorphized being, Ethereum is the result of its cumulative experiences.

A new baby, Ethereum, was born on July 30, 2015. Then a lot of people started cooing insanely about it and they haven’t stopped since, and that’s how it came to be what it is today.

Ethereum has already returned their worship many times and is showing no signs of stopping.

Learn to walk

Ethereum has been the driving force behind most of the blockchain innovations and has helped popularize the transition from the idea of ​​blockchain as a vehicle for magical internet money to the idea of ​​blockchain for everything.

Ethereum’s position as a driving force for innovation has already shown itself at its supposed lows. The DAO hack is practically a distant memory now, but in hindsight, the $ 60 million lost seems like a small price to pay for the lessons it taught about security, decentralization, and the operations associated with it. Likewise, the actually not so fateful decision to split off in Ethereum Classic turned out to be not really important, although it was a teachable moment.

By making these big mistakes early on, the Ethereum community was better able to shake off later mishaps like the $ 160 million parity wallet freeze. If the Ethereum community hadn’t mastered issues like forking sooner to get funds back, they would likely have done so later with much worse results.

In hindsight, the cost of these incidents was quite small – although you would probably have a different perspective if you lost money personally – while the benefits were quite large.

The ICO boom was arguably a much bigger challenge, but it also brought more innovation and understanding.

At its peak, around 80% of ICOs were scams, while 19% were just plain bad. This era is best exemplified by an ICO called BlockBroker, which launched an ICO to raise funds for a project that would somehow use tokens to fight ICO fraud before it scammed itself.

With each new fraud weakening the public’s goodwill and tainting the entire industry, the greatest pessimists of the time were ready to write it off as yet another failed experiment. And yet a few years later we see the lasting benefits of the boom.

The waves of fraud washed a lot of rubbish onto the beach of innovation, but they also brought back many beautiful seashells that are still preserved today, while most of the rubbish has long been gone.

ICOs have spawned success stories like Binance, which are now pouring money into other blockchain developments themselves, as well as many of the DeFi projects that appear on the way to defining Ethereum in its current phase, such as Chainlink, Synthetix, and many more.

Equally important, the sheer excesses of the era finally forced regulatory interventions that helped bring some order to the chaos and fostered a more nuanced, pragmatic vision of what Ethereum could be, how it could grow, and where the worlds of the centralized and decentralized finance could one day meet in the real world.

Growing up a libertarian and then going out into the world and noticing that the actual regulators were nicer to me than many “cypherpunks” was very confusing😖

– vitalik.eth (@VitalikButerin) February 15, 2018

Perhaps it was these experiences of Ethereum and its community being on both, all and neither side of the fence at the same time that made it such an adaptable and pragmatic system. They helped pave the way for the vision of Ethereum 2.0 where the main chain of Ethereum is a focal point in a garden of legal, hybrid and other permissionless chains.

How they grow

That story served Ethereum well, giving it the flexibility it needs in a complicated world.

“One of the main reasons Ethereum is so successful is its innate malleability,” said Nick Cowan, CEO of GSX Group. “Just as the rise of Web 2.0 boosted a great deal of momentum from a technological point of view, the emergence of Ethereum was the battering ram for the rise of blockchain in the broader sense … The use cases of blockchain extend to almost every industry and sector, with many of them Innovations that rely on Ethereum as the fundamental layer. “

“[Ethereum’s] Its success comes from the ease with which both hybrid and fully decentralized autonomous systems, applications and organizations can operate with their framework, “said Dan Gunsberg, CEO of HXRO. The real beauty of Ethereum is that it is the ultimate laboratory for innovation in an almost infinite spectrum of market segments. “

The ability to integrate with authorization chains is an essential part of this success.

“I can tell you firsthand that Ethereum is the most requested chain, right at the top of Bitcoin that Blockset companies are asking for support, probably because of its ability to build private chains,” says Adam Traidman, CEO of BRD and Blockset- Inventor.

Clear CEO Eran Haggiag predicts further developments in this direction:

“Looking ahead, in the next five years, I believe DLT will become a critical infrastructure enabling cross-company financial applications, identity management and traceability – something most organizations cannot operate without,” he says. “Because of the conservative nature of many companies, most of these networks are now approved, with DLT technology selected based on different parameters, resulting in multiple DLTs for different networks.”

“By enabling a DLT-agnostic infrastructure, cross-network connections can be created quickly and application providers can write an application once and easily deploy it anywhere. With the seamless migration between DLTs, a DLT-agnostic infrastructure will pave the way for the future. “Switch to public networks such as Ethereum or integrate with them for payment and other DeFi applications.”

It’s funny to think that absolutely none of these considerations was a top priority as Ethereum was navigating its way through times like the DAO hack, parity freeze, ICO frenzy, and the attack by the Cryptokitties, but somehow it reacted and grew from those who got its way for future success.

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Disclosure: The author holds cryptocurrencies like BTC, ETH, BNB, KDA, BAND, CELO, FET, HBAR at the time of writing

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