ETHSeoul 2022 – a technical blockchain conference. Ethereum developers turned their attention to privacy systems, scalability and improved user experience as they gathered in Seoul’s Gangnam business district. The main stage was opened by Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin.
“With zk proofs, you are able to prove you are a human without actually revealing it. You are also able to have reputation systems where you can prove you have done or did not do something,” he said. “With Soulbound tokens, which are non-transferable, you can prevent dumping and unequal allocations, leading to better governance and fairer token distributions,” Buterin added, referring to the parts of the crypto world that are filled with opportunistic developers and carpet pullers.
This view was shared by Janmajaya Mall and Barry Whitehat from the Ethereum Foundation’s scaling and privacy team. Mall and Whitehat said the concept of off-chain microtransactions, or transfers of small tokens that reside outside of a network, is a way to expand scalability for blockchain users, while zk testing improves the privacy aspect. Nik Kunkel, developer of the Ethereum lending and borrowing platform MakerDAO, outlined the problems and concerns raised by a lack of transparency and the actions of centralized institutions such as Celsius Network, BlockFi and Voyager Digital, and introduced the concept of community pools.
“Essentially you want to onboard everybody in the community and every stakeholder to get consensus,” Kunkel said. “You are essentially betting that the entire community isn’t going to murder itself.” Importance of security and user experience to achieve mass adoption.
“People who are in the space understand gas fees and why we need them, but those who aren’t native to Web3 don’t get it and don’t want to,” Rahat Chowdhury, an engineer at blockchain network Polygon. “We need to make apps more inviting to people that aren’t native to Web3 if we are to achieve mass adoption.”
Michael Blank, COO of network developer Polygon Studios, spoke about the challenges of bringing Web3 to the masses. “We need to ask ourselves what additional value the technology provides to the one before it, how easy it is to enter and engage users, and how many repeat users there are,” Blank said. Aqeel Mohammad from the Ethereum Foundation expressed the need to establish more Proof-of-Stake validation nodes in South Korea and Asia to achieve the decentralization goals. Currently, most of the nodes are located in Europe and the US.