One of the most interesting things about the Ethereum Blockchain, is that its core software permits developers to create Clever Contracts which are run ter computers around the world. And just like your tablet, smartphone or laptop need to be updated every once te awhile, so does the Ethereum software.
At very first there wasgoed only Metropolis, the code name used to describe Ethereum’s next big update which wasgoed supposed to bring better scalability, privacy and robustness to the network. Delays te it’s development process and unexpected hacks to the network coerced the development team to split the Metropolis update into two phases: Byzantium and Constantinople. While the launch date for Constantinople has not yet bot defined, Byzantium wasgoed set to be launched through a hard fork triggered with the arrival of block Four,370,000. This happened last 16th of October at 05:22 +UTC. Unlike the SegWit schouwspel back ter August which resulted Bitcoin’s hard fork and the creation of Bitcoin Metselspecie, Ethereum’s Byzantium update went slickly and without major events.
Byzantium is a mostly under-the-hood update, meaning that end users will notice close to nothing when using their Ether ter their day to day transactions. Through the implementation of 9 Ethereum Improvement Protocols (EPIs), the Ethereum Foundation is taking it’s blockchain to a entire fresh level. Byzantium concentrates on three things: providing developers fresh contraptions to develop better clever contracts, providing miners a better ecosystem ter which to carry out their activities and lastly, laying the groundwork for the Constantinople update.
Brainy contract developers which have updated to Byzantium now have four fresh opcodes designed for the Ethereum Virtual Machine which should ease their development activities. Moreover, they’ve bot treated to precompiled contracts which permit the implementation of zkSNARK, a implement which enables sending anonymous transactions, a technology which wasgoed very first seen te Zcash. Thesis few but significant fresh features will surely open the doors for fresh and innovative use cases.
Owners of mining hardware which have updated to Byzantium will see a fresh version of the Difficulty Adjustment Algorithm, which now targets a onveranderlijk average rate of blocks produced including uncles and also causing the difficulty value to druppel. This update wasgoed long overdue, since difficulty had bot enhancing exponentially. The adjustment of the difficulty comes with a positive side effect, which is the adjustment of the Block Time to under 15 seconds. This means the average number of blocks mined will dual. However, with Byzantium comes a reduction of the block prize, from Five to Three ETH. Albeit this represents a 40% decrease ter revenue vanaf block for miners, their overall revenue will not be greatly affected since they will be able to mine twice spil quick. At least until the difficulty raises again to it’s value before the hard fork.
The last update ter Byzantium is meant to pave the way to Constantinople. It gives the Ethereum Foundation more time to finish developing Casper, the Proof-of-Stake (PoS) overeenstemming algorithm, which intends to substitute the current one based on Proof-of-Work (PoW). This update delays the “Difficulty Bomb” coded te the Ethereum Blockchain by about 12 to Eighteen months, which when triggered, exponentially increments the mining difficulty. This results te higher block times and lower revenue for ethereum miners, thus persuading them to budge from the PoW based Byzantium to the PoS based Constantinople.
Even tho’ the transition to Byzantium went sleekly, a testing period of up to two months is required to deem the software a success, according to Ethereum’s founder Vitalik Buterin. It will be interesting to see what zuigeling of fresh applications will the global developer community create with the fresh set of devices provided. Welcome to the Byzantium era!
If you’d like to join the Ethereum network by mining, you can do so here!