Vitalik Buterin Not a Fan of Simplifying L1s at the Expense of L2s

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  • Vitalik Buterin is no more confident in the fact that L2s are actually better than L1s. 
  • Buterin doesn’t believe in simplifying “L1 even at the expense of more complicated L2s.”
  • The Ethereum creator said that if an L2 consensus fails, people can lose a lot of money.

Vitalik Buterin, the co-founder of the blockchain network Ethereum, has stated that he is not confident in the concept of simplifying “L1 even at the expense of more complicated L2s” because it is currently not clear if L2 blockchain networks are better than L1s.

In a post on social media platform X (formerly known as Twitter), Buterin noted that he is three times less confident in the notion of simplification of L1s at the cost of L2s than he was five years ago. He added:

The challenge is that when you can trade off between L1 bug risk and L2 bug risk, it’s not actually clear that the latter is better!

The Ethereum creator gave the example of a situation where there is a consensus failure in a Layer 1 blockchain. In such a case, “stuff breaks” and core developers “scramble for a day,” but eventually, everything returns to normal. However, in the case of an L2 bug, “people could permanently lose lots of money,” Buterin pointed out.

Ethereum’s Buterin went on to say, “It can actually be worth adding some pretty sophisticated L1 features to reduce the code burden of L2s and allow them to be reasonably simple.”

The conversation began when Bitcoin enthusiast Leo Fernevak stated in an X post that scaling is not going to happen on the base layer. Fernevak claimed that complex features can be built atop L2s and added that the base layer will always fill up regardless of ‘scaling’ efforts.

The technical editor for Bitcoin Magazine, @brian_trollz, replied to Fernevak’s comment, pointing out that L2s are completely limited by what can be implemented on L1s. As reported earlier, Buterin is also excited about the integration of Verkle trees in the Ethereum network, which can save significant disk space used by nodes and provide significant staking benefits.

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