Ethereum Co-founder Vitalik Buterin Shows His Dissatisfaction With Enterprise Blockchain

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by Bhushan Akolkar · 3 min read
Ethereum Co-founder Vitalik Buterin Shows His Dissatisfaction With Enterprise Blockchain
Photo: TechCrunch / Flickr

Buterin criticized the proprietary nature of enterprise blockchain solutions saying that they don’t provide 100 percent guarantees of things, especially in the real world.

During his recent interview with the Quartz publication at the Devcon4 blockchain conference, Vitalik Buterin expressed dissatisfaction over the latest progress in enterprise blockchain. Putting it out in strong words, Buterin said that unfocused development of blockchain by industries can lead to “wasted time”.

The Ethereum co-founder said that many companies are working on blockchain is more of an empty marketing attempt. Since many big corporations are working to establish high standards for blockchain, Buterin thinks that the technology is not applicable to every industry.

“Sometimes it is for marketing hype. Sometimes it is just people who are genuinely excited about blockchains and want the thing they are personally excited about and their job to align more with each other, which is a totally legitimate, human thing to want to do,” he said.

Buterin Takes a Dig at Enterprise Blockchains

While speaking at the conference, Buterin said that the most suitable application of blockchain is cross-border payments and digital currencies. “All of the other ideas — whether we’re talking about products or the self-sovereign identity stuff — that’s clearly something that still needs much more time to be worked out before we can see [whether it] makes sense at scale,” he added.

Speaking of enterprise blockchain solutions from tech giants like IBM and Microsoft, Buterin criticized their proprietary nature. “They [blockchains] definitely don’t provide 100 percent guarantees of things, especially in the real world,” he stated.

“I don’t understand this deeply, but the detail that jumped out at me is they’re saying ‘Hey, we own all the IP and this is basically our platform and you’re getting on it.’ And like, that’s… totally not the point….”

Buterin said that IBM’s blockchain project for food tracking has definitely got a good value. However, he doubts the company’s ability to execute such a large scale project. Buterin also spoke about other non-financial applications of the blockchain. He said he likes the idea of authentication university degrees by leveraging blockchain’s tamper-proof ability.

Talking on Ethereum’s Scalability and Other Issues

This year’s Devcon4 conference was not at all a saga event for Ethereum and its developers. Buterin had to face some serious questions over the long going scalability issues of the network. Although Buterin promised for a 1000x capacity upgrade coming, developers have been postponing the launch of its Constantinople hard fork.

Buterin today stands at a crucial junction for meeting up to the investors and his supporters expectations. Last month, Nouriel Roubini popularly known as Dr. Doom called Buterin a scammer. He said that Vitalik Buterin and his partner, Joe Lubin became billionaires by skimming Ether coins prior to their public release.

This accusation led to a series of tweets by Buterin and others in the crypto space. This shows that Buterin too has stayed at the receiving end of a sharp criticism from other industry players.

Earlier this week CoinSpeaker reported that Ethereum developers are secretly planning an upgrade by June 2019. The report talks about changing the costing model for smart contracts as well as replacing ethereum-virtual-machine with eWASM.

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