Ethereum is planning a system-wide upgrade, developing code for Constantinople. This comes as the second part of a series of upgrades to make the ethereum network more efficient and less costly in terms of fees. In a core developer meeting on Friday, it was decided that Constantinople will be activated sometime during October before Devcon 4 conference. Yet, an exact number after which the change will take effect hasn’t been decided for this backwards-incompatible change.
A rough roadmap for the upgrade has been suggested which states that the implementation stage would continue till August 13, which would be followed by 2 months of testing, including the launch of a Constantinople-specific test network.
This upgrade is aimed at making the platform more efficient with various optimisations, also making it less costly in terms of fees. In October 2017, Ethereum activated Byzantium which is now being followed up by Constantinople. According to the developer meeting, a total of four ethereum improvement upgrades (EIPs) are being planned. Upgrades that have reached the implementation stage include EIP 210 which reorganises how block hashes are stored and EIP 145 which increases the speed of arithmetic in the Ethereum Virtual Machine. Rest of the upgrades include the addition of ethereum state channel (EIP 1014) and a new op-code that compresses how contracts interact (EIP 1052), are also being worked upon by the developers.
Two more upgrades including a possible delay in ethereum’s difficulty bomb and an EIP that could improve how gas pricing works, are being talked about.
However, for the miners, the difficulty is a contentious topic which involves a consideration of ethereum’s insurance model and one that has impacts on different stakeholders, but no decision has been made as of now.
Certainly, an Ethereum hard fork is going to bring waves of discussions and speculations around the cryptocurrency community. It isn’t just about a cryptocurrency but the second largest one in the world. A lot must is already expected from the talks of optimisation of speed and fees. Hopefully, the difficulty of miners could also be resolved during this time.