Ethereum Whiz Teases 100x Scaling, Says Crypto Is ‘Bigger Than Bitcoin’

Samantha Chang @Samantha_Chang
August 19, 2019 11:05 UTC

By CCN Markets: Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin says improving scalability could slash crypto transaction costs by a factor of “over 100.” That’s crucial, considering that blockchain has become so much “bigger than bitcoin.”

Moreover, Buterin says upgrading scalability could dramatically boost mass crypto adoption. So that’s a pressing issue the industry must address if it wants to make bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies mainstream.

‘Scalability is a big bottleneck’

Vitalik Buterin warned that the Ethereum blockchain is already almost full, even though crypto isn’t even close to mainstream adoption. | Source: Shutterstock

Buterin told Canadian daily The Star that “scalability is a big bottleneck because the Ethereum blockchain is almost full.”

“If you’re a bigger organization, the calculus is that if we join, it will not only be more full but we will be competing with everyone for transaction space. It’s already expensive and it will be even five times more expensive because of us. There is pressure keeping people from joining, but improvements in scalability can do a lot in improving that.”

The 25-year-old programming whiz says the main problem with the current blockchain is that every computer has to verify every transaction.

However, he says one way to streamline this is to have a network where every node verifies only a small portion of transactions. Moreover, Buterin claims you could accomplish this with only minor sacrifices in security.

Buterin: Blockchain transcends bitcoin

The Ethereum creator said bitcoin is just one chapter in the blockchain story. | Source: Shutterstock

Separately, Buterin says he’s encouraged that there’s growing public awareness of blockchain now. This was propelled by the rising popularity of bitcoin.

However, he says the disruptive potential of blockchain transcends bitcoin.

“Five years ago, the blockchain was just about bitcoin, but now it’s much bigger than just bitcoin. It’s split off into separate spaces that have a lot of different visions.

For bitcoin, the idea is that you have decentralized cryptocurrency running on blockchain and protected from corporate and state control that’s not going to deflate on you and it’s not going to get confiscated. The blockchain is just a tool to make that specific thing possible.”

Buterin urges regulators to help bitcoin and other blockchains grow

Buterin says for Ethereum, he’s more concerned about expanding the use cases for blockchain so that other things can be decentralized. Unlike other crypto influencers, Buterin does not oppose government regulation.

In fact, Buterin says governments have a significant role to play in promoting mass integration of blockchain. To this end, Buterin says he has been speaking to governments and corporations around the world. He says he has been pleasantly surprised that they are “increasingly warming up to public chains.”

In April 2019, Buterin urged the South Korean government to deregulate the blockchain industry and to embrace crypto. He said its current laws are overly restrictive and inhibit innovation.

At the time, Buterin was reacting to the Korean government’s “blockchain, not bitcoin” stance. South Korean officials have promoted blockchain while undermining cryptocurrencies and banning ICOs.

The government also stripped crypto businesses of tax breaks following several high-profile scams. But Buterin argued that crypto and blockchain are too intertwined and cannot be separated.

Craig Wright: Buterin created a Ponzi scheme

While Buterin has legions of fans in the crypto-sphere, he has also attracted his share of enemies. Self-proclaimed bitcoin inventor Craig Wright is one.

As CCN reported, Wright trashed Buterin as a scam artist who created the “biggest Ponzi market and scheme of the decade — with ICOs that have extracted billions of dollars from unwary individuals.”

Wright claims Vitalik Buterin did this by scamming “uninformed and unsophisticated investors” out of their money. “Vitalik calls it democratizing finance  —  a term generally used when people seek to dupe the uninformed,” Wright fumed.

Last modified: August 20, 2019 07:31 UTC