Vitalik Buterin reveals his biggest regret about Ethereum

Quick Take

  • In an AMA on Twitter, Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin let people he followed ask him any question they like.
  • He answered two questions over his greatest regret during his Ethereum journey.

In six years, Ethereum has gone from a newly launched project to a global settlement platform moving $9 billion in value per day — with applications ranging from DeFi to NFTs. 

But what’s the one thing that Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin regrets the most?

“The whole '8 cofounders' thing (and choosing them so quickly and nondiscriminately),” he revealed today in a Twitter AMA.

These eight co-founders are Buterin himself, poker coach Mihai Alisie, Canadian entrepreneur Anthony Di Iorio, programmer Jeffrey Wilcke, mathematician Charles Hoskinson, Amir Chetrit who was working on Colored Coins, SyNerG Music CEO Joseph Lubin, and computer scientist Gavin Wood (based on their jobs at the time).

Hoskinson is now the founder of Cardano, which is introducing smart contracts this month, while Gavin Wood is building Polkadot. Both are top 10 blockchain platforms by market cap.

At the time, there was a big debate over whether Ethereum should be a for-profit corporation or a non-profit. It was almost incubated as a company but the paper was never signed. This issue was divisive and even led to the ousting of Hoskinson from the group.

“People are harder to tightly coordinate in small groups than I expected. You can't just get everyone to sit around in a circle, see each other's inherent goodness and get along, especially when huge incentive conflicts are at play,” Buterin added in response to a similar question.

Other questions

In terms of the design of the Ethereum Virtual Machine itself, Buterin said it was a bad idea to make it 256 bit, whereas it should have been “64 bit with an arbitrary-size bigint feature.” This refers to processing power, with 64 bits systems able to process data more quickly.

Buterin speculated that if he wasn’t into crypto, he would probably be working on designing a kind of social media platform. 

He also discussed that he still remains somewhat of a digital nomad, although he moves around more slowly now, living in places for months at a time. 

“I feel like my huge span of time in Singapore last year changed me quite a bit. It was interesting to just... be by myself and with my own thoughts for the first time in nearly a decade,” he said.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk also weighed in, asking Buterin what love is. He replied, "X AE A-12 don't hurt me..."

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