ETHosphere Timeline Update 3 May 2021

Hello Eth-fam! Quick one for the ETHosphere timeline update this week as it’s a holiday weekend for me here in the UK. Taking some time out to relax, and of course watching the price spike like the rest of you degens. The summary of this week is that we don’t have much new, but we do have much more confidence in the Merge and the London upgrade is still on track. I think the market is reacting to something…

The Merge

  • On Friday, the first Merge devnet was activated at the Rayonism hackathon. Four Eth2/consensus layer clients (Teku, Prysm, Lighthouse, and Nimbus) achieved various levels of interoperability with three Eth1/execution layer clients (Besu, Nethermind and Geth). Things are looking good for testing so far.
  • It looks like there will be an effort made to test sharding and withdrawals, although Vitalik points out that this test is for the post-transition state of the Merge only – the transition itself is a separate, hopefully simpler, beast that will be informed by the learnings we get from Rayonism.
  • All told this is incredibly bullish. 2021 Merge launch ambition is looking more likely as a result of this, in my view.


  • Still on track for 14 July. We should find out the specific block numbers for test/mainnet next week.
  • EIP-3529, for reducing gas refunds, is the new EIP-3403. 3529 will be included in London.
  • The difficulty bomb EIP, 3238, needs to be re-written to accommodate the change to bring it forward to Dec 2021. Thus 3238 will not be in London, but its eventual replacement will be.
  • EIP-3541 is also being considered for inclusion in London. If included, 3540 should follow in Shanghai. If not, it might be Cancun which is gonna be a while. To be discussed at the next ACD!
  • Due to these EIP updates, the Baikal devnet has been launched, replacing the Aleut devnet. We hardy knew ye!

Other bits

  • Rocketpool – The current (finale?) beta has now concluded! A new more permanent Rocketpool testnet will launch on the Prater testnet in May. This is effectively the mainnet release candidate for Rocketpool and will include updates off the back of the audit recommendations. I feel like we say this every week, but, mainnet edges closer! Am still picking June until they tell me otherwise.
  • Uniswap v3 lands this week, Wednesday! Remember that it’s not planned to launch on Optimism L2 – that is still to come. All eyes…
  • And those are the main timeline updates. Not much change in the L2 landscape this week afaik, but some weeks are like that!


All dates are moderately informed guesses by me, and should definitely NOT be viewed as commitments from the respective teams.

Q2 (Apr-Jun) 2021

Q3 (Jul-Sep) 2021

Q4 (Oct-Dec) 2021

  • October – Shanghai: Ethereum upgrade to clean up EIPs previously mooted but ultimately excluded from London and The Merge. Considered EIPs: 3074, 3521, 2935, 2537, 2677, 3540
  • October – The Eth1 / Eth2 Merge: Ethereum transitions to Proof of Stake
  • October – zkSync 20,000+ TPS ZkPorter solution.
  • StarkNet Universe release. Decentralised zk rollups.

Q1 (Jan-Mar) 2022

  • Cancun – Ethereum upgrade to include validator withdrawals / post-merge cleanup. Scope TBC at this stage, but Vitalik talked about it here.

2022 and beyond!

  • Sharding – 64 data shards (no execution on shards yet) and staggered shard blocks make rollups massively fast.
  • 21-30 June – Hawaii 2022. Get hype.
  • Data Availability Sampling – Security improvement for sharding.
  • List dump of other future Ethereum improvements – Single Secret Leader Elections, verifiable delay functions, proof of custody, address extension to 32 bytes, statelessness and state expiry, account abstraction, EVM improvements, CBC Casper, SNARKed EVM and beacon chain, replace SNARKs with STARKs for quantum security.