30 Ethereum Things to be Thankful for

Random Observation/Comment #684: “Let me just basically say how impressed I am by Ethereum, full stop, period.” ~Heath Tarbert, chairman of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC)

Why this list?

Experimentation with multiple blockchain/DLT platforms has led me to be very thankful for a lot of aspects unique to Ethereum. It withstands the test of time as a live bounty open for anyone to break. Ethereum has maintained a vibrant ecosystem of innovation and has shown to be a beacon moving forward (pun intended).

  1. A live distributed network of 5+ years with no breaks in the protocol. There have been hacks on smart contracts, yes, but the chain carried on as programmed. The community has shown it can always rise to the occasion to ensure the integrity of Ethereum.
  2. The ability for any user (with an address in a wallet) to send transactions without any major intermediaries.This non-custodial self sovereign access is underrated in many ways because your address with its private key to sign transactions is fully migratable to any wallet provider.
  3. 350,000+ developers building on the platform (10x more than any other blockchain platform).
  4. Proven global scalability with millions of contract calls per day and millions of unique addresses.
  5. Hundreds of companies (from enterprises to start ups) building on Ethereum across multiple use cases in a competitive way.
  6. No vendor lock-in for application implementations.
  7. No single point of client software failure. . Ethereum currently has Geth, Hyperledger Besu, Parity, Nethermind, Nimbus, EthereumJ, and others. ) ETH2 has Teku, Harmony, Lighthouse, Nimbus, Prysm. Client diversity is like an insurance policy keeping the network always on. 
  8. A fairly abstracted/light layer of on-chain logic for the basic building blocks of fungible/non-fungible token ownership and settlement. Most development and innovation is the packaging of this Web3 interface rather than having a heavy focus on writing everything in a fixed framework.
  9. ERC standards. Notably ERC20/721 standards have been adopted in some shape or form by a majority of use cases related to fundraising or unique ownership transfer.
  10. Integration with existing centralized crypto exchange infrastructure.
  11. Dozens of reputable news resources reporting on public and enterprise activities in the blockchain space. 
  12. ETH as a native crypto asset is embedded as a security feature with gas payments to execute functions. The cost of gas dissuades sloppy coding (or else your contracts would be too expensive to run). Optimizations keep the code lightweight and under constant review.
  13. At least $2T+ transactions settled across the network.
  14. Live examples of traditional financial assets (digital bonds and equity) represented and settled on mainnet 
  15. Easy to find inspirations of live, open source smart contract patterns simply by inspecting Etherscan and poking around smart contracts
  16. Cheaper to implement a permissioned network with transaction replication and recovery compared to other blockchain systems
  17. Intersection between law and decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs) with the LAO via Openlaw.io
  18. Innovative scaling approaches with Layer 2 including the SKALE Network and Optimistic and ZK Rollups. 
  19. Advanced integrated Zero Knowledge Proof research for on-chain privacy contracts in live solutions.
  20. Graduate university research bias towards analyzing open data sets and patterns provided on Ethereum (rather than permissioned networks with closed source code and closed data sets).
  21. Large member driven standards body called the Enterprise Ethereum Alliance (EEA) with working groups looking at Use Case & Requirements, Enterprise Integration, Trusted Execution, Cross-Chain interoperability, Token Frameworks, Technical Specification, Testing & certification, Digital Identity, Legal Advisory, Financial Services, and ETH Trust.
  22. Innovation within stablecoins that maintain stable value based on real-time supply/demand tokenomics and price adjustments. Now with over $15B in USD cash equivalents stored.
  23. Open source Security audit libraries of known vulnerability patterns and industry choices  for multiple audit teams to review smart contracts.
  24. $13.23B locked in DeFi (check DeFi Pulse for the latest). I could probably write a separate list of 30 just for DeFi project innovation.
  25. Money Legos. The composability and transparency of smart contracts makes it prime for new financial asset primitives like borrowing, lending, derivatives, insurance, and securities.
  26. ETH2 staking deposit contract which effectively represents perpetual bonds.
  27. Upgradeable contract patterns and smart contract deployment management within the Truffle Suite for the easiest developer experience.
  28. Dozens of wallet providers and options for non-custodial hardware wallet integrations. I personally recommend MetaMask for its number of integrations with Web3 applications and the new token swaps functionality.
  29. Acceptance by major companies like PayPal, Square, and Visa which further reaches out to retail consumers, pushing adoption.
  30. The Community! Keep it weird, y’all.

~See Lemons Thankful for Ethereum