The state of the network map of Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin helps contextualize the next 5 to 10 years for a global community of 20,000 developers while highlighting one key issue for the next version of the blockchain: scalability.
Buterin said in a tweet:
“This is my approximate view of what the next ~5-10 years of eth2 and beyond might look like. Roadmap below reflects my own views, others (including future versions of me) may have different perspectives! Details may of course change as we discover new info or new tech.”
According to a blog post by researcher Danny Ryan, the Eth 2.0 research team is now leaning on a new concept called “polynomial commitments” to reduce the data used per computation on the network.
Buterin’s Dubbed “magic math,” polynomial commitments are being looked at as a way to verify the network’s state at low computational cost, a key goal of the future network.
Still, Buterin’s map tags his magic math for network integration in the multi-year push to Eth 2.0 not until at least the third phase.
Polynomial Commitments Could be Major Breakthrough
“Polynomial commitments could be the major breakthrough we’ve been looking for,” Ryan said, specifically regarding the storage of account data in the next version of Ethereum.
Polynomial commitments are similar to those polynomials that we all learned and loved in elementary school: a math expression with both variables and coefficients (i.e., Y=2X).
But this is magic maths again, so it’s not that simple.
Buterin describes polynomial commitments as “a sort of hash of some polynomial P(x) with the property that you can perform arithmetic checks on hashes”. Meanwhile, the original paper on polynomial commitments synthesizes the math scheme as “six algorithms” showing evidence of an event that occurs with as little computing data as possible.
“We suggest replacing Merkle trees by magic math called “polynomial commitments” to accumulate blockchain state,” Buterin said in the Ethereum Foundation blog post. “Benefits include reducing the size of stateless client witnesses (excluding contract code and state data) to near zero.”