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This is a collection of resources I wish I had when I first started exploring Ethereum.
Introductions to Ethereum
- What is Ethereum? — Popular primer on Ethereum.
- Ethereum 101 Series — “A springboard for anyone looking to gain utility from the Ethereum network.” Hosted on the Kauri Archive.
- Mastering Ethereum (Book) — Walks through the implementation of everything from Wallets to Oracles. Written by Andreas M. Antonopoulos and Gavin Wood. Available for free on GitHub (linked).
- Blockchain Primitives: Cryptography and Consensus — Professor Dan Boneh introducing the cryptographic foundations of blockchains and how developers might use it. Lecture published by a16z.
On Web 3.0, Decentralization.
- Crypto Networks and Why They Matter — a16z partner Chris Dixon on how he thinks about cryptonetworks and their significance.
- Why Decentralization Matters — Dixon on why he cares about cryptonetworks and a decentralized internet.
- Ethereum is game-changing technology, literally. — How Ethereum can transform non-cooperative into cooperative games, by providing an “incorruptible, omnipresent, external overseer” to enforce agreements.
Building on Ethereum.
- Ethereum Development Documentation — Covers Ethereum concepts, the tech stack, and some advanced topics. It's not perfect, but it's a good starting point. I recommend reading through it to orient yourself before diving into more comprehensive resources.
- How can I get involved? — List of ways you can contribute to the community. The linked section gives some options for developers, researchers, academics...basically everyone!
- Gitcoin — One of the coolest ways to get involved with Ethereum as a developer. People upload bounties, which are anything from build requests, to virtual hackthons, to intractable bug reports. You get paid in crypto for solving them!
web3-react— React framework for building decentralized apps (dapps) on top of Ethereum.
truffle— Integrated development environment and testing framework for Ethereum. Loads of features which make life easier, like built-in contract compilation and scripted deployment.
openzeppelin-contracts— Library for secure smart contract development. Provides you with community-vetted contract templates you can use.
Writing Smart Contracts
- Introduction to Smart Contracts — Introduction to writing smart contracts with Solitidy. From the official Solidity docs.
- Solidity by Example — Walks you through building contracts for voting, blind auctions, remote purchases, micropayments, and modular design. One of the best resources for learning Solidity! From the official Solidity docs.
- Ethereum Whitepaper — Original whitepaper by Vitalik Buterin.
- Ethereum Yellowpaper — Formal definition of the Ethereum protocol.
- Ethereum Beigepaper — Ethereum Yellowpaper rewritten to be readable by a broader audience.
- The Eth2 Upgrades — Overview of the Ethereum 2.0 upgrades.
- The State of Eth2, Jan 2021 — While ostensibly a progress review, it's actually a great explanation of the high-level context surrounding the ongoing upgrades.
Proof of Stake (PoS)
- What is Proof of Stake? — Explanation of PoS, especially as it compares to Proof of Work.
- Why Proof of Stake (Nov 2020) — Vitalik Buterin on his support for PoS. Gives “...three key reasons why PoS is a superior blockchain security mechanism compared to PoW.”
Problems with Ethereum
- Ethereum is a Dark Forest — “This is a horror story.” Mempool snipers, innocent bystanders, and more. They learnt the hard way that Ethereum transactions happen in an adversarial environment.
- Flash Boys 2.0 — Paper on how arbitrage bots front-run and reorder transactions for profit. Shows how they contribute to the ongoing problem of network congestion. Gas prices on Ethereum have increased dramatically due to network congestion. On May 1st, 2018, the average gas price was 14.28 wei. On March 13th, 2021, the average gas price has reached 162.67 wei, a 1039% increase! Eth2 and L2 scaling solutions aims to fix this by making the network more scalable.
- Miner Extractable Value Auctions — Proposed solution to combat arbitrage bots.
- Out of Gas: We’re Shutting Down UniLogin — Casualty of the recent surge in gas prices :(
Directions for Future Work
- Hard Problems in Cryptocurrency: Five Years Later — Vitalik Buterin reflecting on our progress on the hard problems of crypto, as well as outlining areas of future work.
- An Incomplete Guide to Rollups — Vitalik Buterin explaining what exactly rollups are and how developers might be able to use it.
- Optimistic — Scalability stack for Ethereum built with rollups. It's special in that any L1 Solidity smart contract can work on Optimism without needing to add additional functionality.
- Zero-knowledge proofs, a board game, and leaky abstractions — First-hand account of learning zk-SNARKs (“Zero-Knowledge Succinct Non-Interactive Argument of Knowledge”) from scratch by building a board game.
- An approximate introduction to how zk-SNARKs are possible — Vitalik Buterin giving an intuitive explanation of the mechanics of zk-SNARKs. Beware, this is not easy reading. zk-SNARKs are hard.
- Tornado Cash — Decentralized protocol for anonymous transactions on Ethereum built with zero-knowledge proofs.
- zkSYNC — Scaling solution for Ethereum built with zero-knowledge rollups.
“Ethereum is cool and all, but nobody actually uses it for anything.” Buddy, do I have news for you...
- The Year in Ethereum 2020 — “In 2020, Ethereum reached a critical mass...This year will be remembered as the year that the entire crypto industry began orbiting Ethereum.”
- Beeple sold an NFT for $69 million — Artist published a piece of art every day for 5000+ days. Turns out, that kind of dedication can pay off.
- Crypto Canon — Published by a16z.
- Crypto Reading — Chronological list of important crypto readings.
- The State of Crypto: A Builder’s Guide From Crypto Startup School — Series of video lectures on crypto. Created by a16z.
- EthList: The Crowdsourced Ethereum Reading List — Most popular Ethereum reading list on GitHub.