A new milestone on the Ethereum technical roadmap aims to improve censorship resistance and decentralization of the network
Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin has updated the network’s forward-looking plans. Now, a new stage – the Scourge – will come between the already commenced Surge, and the Verge, the Purge and the Splurge.
The expanded six-part technical roadmap will now “ensure reliable and credibly neutral transaction inclusion and to avoid centralization and other protocol risks from MEV” before simplifying transaction verification and limiting associated costs.
The update arrives amid the increasing control caused by miners exploiting ETH transactions to their favour. The so-called MEV mechanism (Miner Extractable Value) presupposes that a miner exploits market-moving knowledge, reorganizes transactions at their own will, and uses their position of privileged information to execute a trade first.
To prevent this practice after the transition to PoS, Ethereum has gradually become more censored. In particular, the percentage of blocks compliant with the U.S Office of Foreign Asset Control (OFAC) has recently reached 73%. Many users believe this is too much for a decentralized blockchain ledger.
Therefore, further scaling efforts are impossible before renewing the status of neutrality inherent to blockchain networks. While the exact nature of the proposed Scourge solution is yet unclear, previous remarks allow suggesting that a Partial Block Auction or Single Unifying Auctions for Value Expression might be employed.
The updated roadmap also revealed that the Verge will now involve the integration of Succinct Non-Interactive Argument of Knowledge (SNARK) technology. It will add privacy-preserving features to the network while still allowing the traceability of anonymous transactions.