ETH Seoul 2022 — Day Two Highlights

ETH Seoul 2022. the largest annual Ethereum event in South Korea, kicked off with an in-person event in Seoul on August 6-7, covering pertinent topics on the Ethereum ecosystem and beyond.

August 7, 2022
Yap Global

🌟 It was a day of interesting talks from some of the most established builders in the industry covering topics ranging from “How can we scale zk tech applications through recursion?” to “Interoperability with L2s and L3s, and keys to mainstream adoption.” The evening concluded with information on the much-anticipated Merge.

In these past few days, there may have been an information overload, but one thing’s for sure in the words of Taeyeon Kim (Ethereum Foundation): “My relationship with blockchain over the past ten years can be described as one with an ex-boyfriend – you love it and hate it.”

Eli Ben-Sasson, Co-Founder and President of StarkWare kicked the day off by introducing the effectiveness and capacity of SHARP and the way the CAIRO program works. He explained the concept of recursion and how it helps with gas costs, proof capacity and latency, and also about L3s and interoperability with L2s. Eli also made the exciting announcement that recursion production for Starkware started today!

Illia Polosukhin, Co-Founder of Near Protocol shared the vision of NEAR and the vision of having a world where all people can control their assets, data and the power of governance. He introduced the infrastructure and ecosystem behind Near, its sharding roadmap, and the uniqueness of the NEAR account model. He emphasized the importance of maximising security and UX through human-readable IDs with different permissions, multiple keys on different devices, a customizable multi-sig, and more.

Janmajaya Mall and Barry Whitehat from the Privacy & Scaling Exploration Team for the Ethereum Foundation shared ways to offchain microtransactions and what we can do with zk Proofs, highlighting the potential ways to advance privacy and scalability through different application models.

Michael Blank, COO of Polygon studios spoke on the challenges of bringing Web3 to the masses and covered trending topics such as scalability, accessibility, UI/UX and the time taken to adopt new and transformative technologies.

He also spoke about the three keys to mainstream adoption: value, the complexity of the technology, and stickiness (the number of repeat users). He surmised that the main aim is to normalize what you are creating.

“When we think about transformative technologies we know how long they can take to get adopted, and it’s helpful to come up with new nomenclature to define what we do better… but we need to ask ourselves what additional value the technology provides to the one before it, how easy it is to enter and engage users, and how many repeat users there are,” Michael said.

Taeyeon Kim from the Ethereum foundation provided a refreshing contrast to the technical focus of the day by sharing the barriers and challenges in Web3 adoption in terms of inclusion and diversity, and what needs to change for the industry to be able to make meaningful social impacts and change lives.

She introduced various applications that could help with financial inclusion and real-world use cases, rounding off her talk with a compelling call to action to reflect on what our intention is for entering into Web3 – highlighting the tremendous potential to achieve financial and social inclusion among other meaningful use cases to help struggling communities.

Despite the bear markets, solving existing pain points and problems, focusing on utility and improving use cases, security, scalability and accessibility were definitely the prominent themes in the comprehensive line of talks and workshops for day 1 of EthSeoul.

Doo Wan Nam, COO at StableNode and delegate at MakerDAO spoke on the important elements of implementing a DAO and the existing challenges. He spoke on the best practices and key elements for governance; namely in voting, communication, treasury management, a decentralized workforce, standards and framework implementation, and documentation.

Compelling use cases and examples were given for decentralization in protecting against corrupt governance and malicious exploitation, but also well balanced out the challenges in efficiency and effectiveness for DAOs.

“ Many people are first curious about a DAO.. but when they find out what you actually need to do, most of them go — Let’s just create something and paste a label over it and call it a DAO… but that doesn’t make it one,” Doo Wan Nam said. “You can’t expect that there to be nothing and have people come in to form an effective DAO… the community needs to be mature first and there needs to be a balance between leadership from the project team and equality with the DAO members.”

John Kwak, CEO at Blitz Labs shared the history and evolution of the Korean cryptocurrency and Web3 market, and the success of Korean GameFi. He also contrasted the differences between Korea, Japan, Hong Kong and Singapore in the potential for building and selling Web3 and cryptocurrency.

Aqeel Mohammad from the Ethereum Foundation ended the day with a bang, by sharing information on the much-anticipated merge. He covered the various benefits of shifting proof of work to proof of stake; ranging from reduction in energy consumption, improved security and decentralization, better attack recovery, and more.

Common misconceptions were also clarified, together with the stated approximate timeline of a few months for the Merge, pending the result of the last Goerli testnet. Aqeel also expressed the hope to have more POS Validator Nodes established in Korea and Asia, as opposed to the existing majority in Europe and the United States to fulfill the aims of decentralization.

The entire ETH Seoul was live streamed on the KryptoSeoul Channel (turn up your volume!)