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Blockchain Explained

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)
by Clemens WanNovember 21, 2020
putting fire out

Image from Denver Art Museum. Photo by Clemens Wan.

Why this list?

Experimentation with multiple blockchain/DLT platforms has led me to be very thankful for a lot about Ethereum. It withstands the test of time as a live bounty open for anyone to break. Ethereum has kept it 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 were hacks on smart contracts, yes – but the chain carried on as programmed. The community has risen to the occasion to ensure the integrity of Ethereum.
  2. The free 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 DLT 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 in ETH1 (e.g. geth, besu, parity,nethermind, nimbus, ethereumJ, etc) or ETH2 (e.g. Teku, Harmony, Lighthouse, Nimbus, Prysm, etc) client implementations.
  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 that has 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. Cost of gas prevents any sloppy coding (or else your contracts would be too expensive to run). Optimizations keeps the code lightweight and constantly being reviewed.
  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 by just looking at Etherscan and poking around smart contracts
  16. Cheaper to implement a permissioned network with transaction replication and recovery than other DLT systems
  17. Intersection of legal and DAOs with the LAO via
  18. Innovative scaling approaches with Layer 2 including the latest promises with Roll-ups
  19. Advanced integrated Zero Knowledge Proof research for on-chain privacy contracts in live solutions
  20. Clear graduate university research bias towards analyzing the data and patterns pushed forward by Ethereum
  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 – Choices for multiple audit teams on reviewing smart contracts
  24. $13.23B locked into DeFi – check DeFi Pulse for the latest – I can probably write a separate list of 30 just for DeFi project innovation
  25. Money Legos – The composability and transparency of smart contracts makes it filled with new opportunities 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. Personally recommend MetaMask for its number of integrations with web3 and the MetaMask Swaps functionality
  29. Adoption by major companies like PayPal, Square, and Visa to reach out to retail consumers for further adoption
  30. The Community – Keep it weird, y’all.

~See Lemons Thankful for Ethereum 

For more lists of 30 by Clemens Wan, visit