Whats all this stuff about ethereum and ether being different?
An important point about this project is that we see ethereum as being a platform first. If you approach it from the perspective of ether being a coin, with all the smart contract stuff being just bells and whistles on top to make the coin more valuable, you are going to have a hard time understanding this community; it’s really all about the applications first and foremost, and ether is there simply as a token to facilitate payment of transaction fees and incentivize mining (and of course it can also be used as a default medium for inter-application payments and security deposits).
Where is the value in ethereum derived from?
Ethereum is useful primarily because of its very high degree of generality, allowing users to build a very wide array of applications directly on the blockchain, ranging from currencies to various kinds of financial contracts to domain name registries, identity registries and certificate authority systems and even voting and governance applications. The protocol includes a built-in programming language that essentially allows you to specify whatever “rules” for a smart contract that you want, and the blockchain executes them for you.
Does Ethereum have a blocksize limit?
No. The blocksize is adjusted dynamically.
What are the block times?
On average 16 seconds.
How many TPS does Ethereum support
between 20 tps to 45 tps. possibly more.
With CASPER and future iterations what will the block times and tps be?
1-2 second block times and 115000 tps.
How can Ethereum support such a short block times without causing forks?
It uses the GHOST protocol. For proof of stake it will use CASPER.
Is Ether designed to be a currency? Is it a competitor to Bitcoin?
Depends on who you ask. The primary purpose of ether is to pay for ‘gas’ to run smart contracts on the platform. It can be used as a currency, and a very good one at that (quick confirmation times, smart contract capabilities, large TPS). However, many think the “true” currency capabilities will come from currencies built on the platform such as stablecoins (e.g Maker).
Is Ether pre-mined?
Ether had a crowdsale. It launched with 72M, where 60M was presold to buyers and 12M was allocated to the foundation. All for development purposes. Therefore 83% of the initial supply was spread out to pre-sale buyers and the remaining allocated for the Foundation to ensure continuous development and support of the platform.
Does the Foundation have enough money to continue?
Vitalik recently stated the foundation has enough money for 4 years of operations. At the time the price of Ether was $4.
What is the Inflation?
- proof of work (current) ~15% in the first year, capping at 90M
- proof of stake (serenity release), 0% to 8% or continuously decreasing %. has not been decided yet.
Is the Ether supply “infinite”?
The roadmap originally intended for 18M more ether to be mined, with a cap of 90M. Followed by a switch to Proof of Stake in the Serenity Release. It’s unclear at this point if there will any inflation with Serenity release, if there is it will be between 0% and 8% depending on what makes sense for the CASPER algorithm and the platform.
Does Ethereum have a ‘dictator’?
No. There are several teams and leads that decide the directions of the platform. For the main clients, the lead devs are: Jeffrey Wilcke , Gavin Wood, Vitalik Buterin, Christian Reitwiessner and Vlad Zamfir.
Are Ethereum & Bitcoin Hashrates comparable?
Not directly since they use very different mining algorithms. Ethereums uses an ASIC resistant algorithm named EThash.