Ethereum History: A Brief Summary of Eventful Years

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Ethereum is an open-source blockchain with a unique functionality called a smart contract. It allows developers to deploy decentralized apps and cryptocurrency trading without third-party involvement.

In less than a decade, Ethereum already features several upgrades to its platform. Here’s a summary of Ethereum’s eventful years:

2011: Vitalik Buterin Visualizes Ethereum

Vitalik Buterin, a 17-year-old Russian-Canadian programmer, who is also involved in Bitcoin and co-founded Bitcoin Magazine, visualizes a blockchain beyond bitcoin. He wanted a platform that goes beyond financial use. He envisioned the platform to include programmable apps.

2013: Ethereum Is Born

Vitalik published the Ethereum white paper in late 2013. The whitepaper describes Ethereum as “a next-generation smart contract and decentralized application platform.”

2014: The Formal Introduction

Ethereum was formally introduced in January 2014 at The North American Bitcoin Conference in Miami, Florida, USA. The platform is different from bitcoin because it can trade more than just cryptocurrency.

April of the same year, Dr. Gavin co-found Ethereum. Gavin later published the Ethereum Yellow Paper as the technical specification for the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM). It was mentioned in the Yellow Paper that the Ethereum client was implemented in several programming languages, such as C++, Go, Java, JavaScript, Python, Haskell, and Rust.

2014: Initial Ether Allocation and DEVCON 0

In July 2014, Ethereum raised $18,439,086 for about 60,102,216 Ether. It happened through a 42-day public ether presale. 

The first Ethereum conference, called DEVCON 0, was organized in the same year. It later became the annual conference for all Ethereum developers, thinkers, researchers, and makers.

2015: Formation of MakerDAO

In 2015, MakerDao was created. It aims to build an entire Defi ecosystem permitting loans and savings on Ethereum’s blockchain network. The MakerDAO was developed by Danish entrepreneur Rune Christensen, Nikolai Mushegian, and others.

2015: The Olympic Phase

During this period, developers did their final proof of concept open testnet. Vitalik also wants to test if the platform can handle high traffic. Testing includes Transaction Activity, Virtual Machine Usage, Mining Prowess, and General Punishment.

2015: Frontier Phase

It was July 30, 2015, when the first version of Ethereum, called Frontier, was released. The Ethereum 1.0 or Frontier aims to facilitate intelligent contracts and process transactions through distributed computing.

2016: Homestead Update

On May 14, 2016, the Homestead Update was implemented with block number 1,150,000. Three important things happened with the upgrade. First, it removed the canary feature. Secondly, it introduced new codes in Solidity. And lastly, it introduced the Mist wallet.

2016: Ethereum Classic

The launch of the Ethereum Classic is one of the critical events in the history of Ethereum. It was launched in 2016, allowing users to crowdsource funds through a token sale on Ethereum. It raised $150 million worth of Ether, but because of a bug, hackers stole $50 million worth of funds in June 2016.

2017: Enterprise Ethereum Alliance

The Enterprise Ethereum Alliance was formed in February 2017. Some notable names in the alliance are Microsoft Corporation,  Intel Corporation, JP Morgan Chase, and Bank of New York Mellon Corp.

2017: Tangerine Whistle and Spurious Dragon

Because of several DoS (denial-of-service) attacks, Tangerine Whistle and Spurious Dragon were launched. The purpose of these systems is to deal with Ethereum’s security issues and improve network efficiency.

2017: Collapse of EtherDelta

EtherDelta was the first decentralized exchange built on Ethereum. However, in 2017, the hacker managed to get into the front end of EtherDelta and diverted the traffic to a phishing site.

2018: The Term ‘DeFi’ Is Coined

In August 2018, the term Defi, or decentralized finance, was coined. This happened during a Telegram chat between Ethereum developers and entrepreneurs. In recent times, defi has been one of the dominating features of Ethereum.

2017-2020: The Metropolis Phase

The Metropolis phase is when Ethereum improves its security, scalability, and privacy. The upgrades were done in two steps – Byzantium and Constantinople.

Byzantium was implemented in October 2017. It consisted of Ethereum Improvement Protocols (EIPs) for improving Ethereum’s privacy, scalability, and security attributes.

In mid-2018, the other step was implemented.  It was the solution to the problems arising from implementing the first step.

2020: Ethereum 2.0

The Serenity stage, or Ethereum 2.0, is still in its ongoing development. This upgrade aims to elevate Ethereum to a level with no security lapses or high-volume issues.2021: The Berlin Upgrade

The Berlin update was launched in April 2021. The update is meant to reduce the ETH gas prices.

2021: Ether Price Marched Past $4,000

For the first time on May 20, 2021, Ether’s price marched past $4,000. The yield is about 450% in 2021 alone.

2021: The London Upgrade

The London upgrade aims to lower the transaction fees on Ethereum. It can be done by burning or destroying Ether coins. The upgrade also signals a new mining pattern for the Ether.

2021: Rising Ethereum Price

Since May 2021, Ethereum has risen above $4,000. Later in the same year, hundreds of millions of ether were burned every month.

The Final Words

In less than a decade in the crypto world, Ethereum is still in its formative stage. But for the past years, it has shown its limitless potential. 

The Ethereum 2.0 update is likely to happen in 2022. This update will address the transaction fees and the overall platform, making it more environment-friendly and scalable.

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