Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin said he would “freely admit” that Ethereum 2.0 is “much harder” to implement from a technical perspective than he had expected.
During the debate, the trio discussed the reasons for the “open warfare” between the Bitcoin and Ethereum networks and whether the latter will be able to deliver on its many promises.
McCormack, who is self-avowedly “not far off” from a Bitcoin maximalist position, asked Buterin:
“Do you ever feel like Ethereum has become a much more challenging project or idea than you originally envisaged, and potentially, you've bitten more than you can chew? And that it gets to the point where there's no turning back?”
“I definitely freely admit that Ethereum 2.0 is much harder than we expected to implement from a technical perspective,” Buterin said. He continued:
“I definitely don't think that we discovered any fundamental flaws that make it impossible, and I do think it will be finished. It's just a matter of time, and it's actually been progressing quite quickly lately.”
Speaking candidly about how he expects the project to develop, Buterin added that it’s likely some Ethereum applications may fail, while others succeed. But he sees these ebbs and flows in the project’s multiple aspects as being independent of each other:
“If Ethereum tries to get into one space and it turns out it's actually not useful for that space, then fine, you know, those applications will not go anywhere. Meanwhile, the other sectors will keep going,” he said.
Earlier in the podcast, Samson Mow criticized Ethereum proponents for purportedly shifting the narrative around the project’s ambitions and goals, arguing that “It's okay to pivot and evolve, but there needs to be a healthy disclaimer that this thing is experimental."
Mow continued to claim that “A lot of the Ethereum people are saying Ethereum is money now and whatnot, and now it's competing with Bitcoin. [...] Even I'm not sure what Ethereum is, or what it does, or what it competes with. Is it a world computer? Or is it money?”
Responding to this, Buterin hit back strongly against the notion that Ethereum is reducible to money and said that non-financial applications have been an integral part of the project since its beginning:
“I definitely did not initiate the whole Ether is money thing, the Ethereum Foundation did not initiate it. That's something that really did come from the outside.”