The Scaling Wars - The Daily Gwei #518
They're just getting started.
It seems like work on scaling Ethereum has been happening for as long as work on Proof of Stake Ethereum has been happening. From the first mentions of sharding to state channel networks like Raiden to Plasma to the rollups we all know and love today, Ethereum scaling has gone through many iterations of research and development to get to the vibrant scaling ecosystem we have today.
I truly do believe that 2022 and 2023 are going to be pivotal years for Ethereum scaling for a number of reasons. Firstly, we’ve never had as many serious scaling teams as we have today and all of these teams are in fierce competition with eachother to win the “scaling wars”. Why the fierce competition? Because becoming the premiere rollup on Ethereum is an absolutely massive market opportunity that is still very much up for grabs - there are no clear winners in this race just yet. There won’t just be 1 big winner either - there will likely be a handful of them that go on to become absolutely massive global networks.
Secondly, now that rollups are live networks with real users, the teams behind them can focus on constant improvement and optimization of the networks for both users & developers. Additionally, the teams are able to glean unique insights into these networks and battle-test their code in an adversarial environment with real money on the line - you obviously don’t get this from a testnet implementation. The teams are also able to move very quickly in upgrading their networks and don’t have to go through the entire Ethereum governance process to improve their network.
All of this is to say nothing of the improvements coming to layer 1 Ethereum that will unlock the next era in scalability for layer 2’s. I am, of course, talking about ‘danksharding’ with its first iteration, proto-danksharding, hopefully going live in Q2/Q3 of next year. This layer 1 upgrade should, in theory, collapse the costs of transacting on rollups (for example, a swap transaction should cost 1 cent or less). This will obviously significantly improve the scalability of the existing layer 2 networks and allow for more exciting innovations to be built out.
It should be obvious by now why I’m just as excited about Ethereum’s scaling roadmap as I am about The Merge - both of these things will usher in a new era for the Ethereum network. As for timelines, The Merge hopefully happens in a couple of months with danksharding rolling out in stages over the next 12-24 months - all while the layer 2 networks themselves keep improving at all times and at a rapid pace.
So let the scaling wars begin and may the coming battles be glorious!
Have a great day everyone,
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All information presented above is for educational purposes only and should not be taken as investment advice.