Buterin Would Be "Fine" With Polkadot Borrowing Ethereum's Code
But does Polkadot actually want it?
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Many tech companies jealously guard their inventions, but there are few secrets in the blockchain space. Vitalik Buterin says he would be “fine” for Polkadot (DOT) or other rival blockchains to borrow from Ethereum’s technical implementations and code.
The Ethereum co-founder said that an open developer space will allow ETH developers to benefit from Polkadot, as well as vice versa. Speaking at an event on Monday night, Buterin invited Polkadot developers to “use our stuff.”
During a forty-five minute talk, Buterin went into detail about some of the technical aspects of Plasma – the layer-two solution that allows developers to build dApps off-chain without compromising security.
“Polkadot’s definitely free to use anything interesting that we’ve come up,” Buterin said, in a response to a question from Crypto Briefing. Sharing technology supports the idea of “an open internet, which makes open collaboration compulsory, which is great for humanity,” he added.
The founder of Polkadot, Gavin Wood, was one of the co-founders of Ethereum and was the first CTO of the Ethereum Foundation. He left the Foundation to start work on Polkadot in 2016.
Polkadot is designed to “enable a completely decentralized web,” connecting otherwise separate networks with shared security and a series of parachains which can share information and transact with one another. There are also plans to create bridges between the Polkadot ecosystem and other chains, like Ethereum.
“The future holds many blockchains,” says Peter Mauric, Head of Public Affairs at Parity Technologies, Polkadot’s core developer company. “[D]eveloping Web 3.0 is not a zero-sum game – we must all learn from each other and improve if we are going to deliver an internet that is fairer and more open for all.”
Although the option is open, Polkadot has said that they have no plans to use code developed by Ethereum 2.0.
Polkadot is one of the most anticipated blockchains. The Web3 Foundation, the main organization behind the project, has been seeking $60m in additional capital funding, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Ethereum has also benefited from the work of other projects in the past, Buterin noted. “We’ve used and benefited quite a bit from Dfinity’s work on BLS signatures,” he added, as well as “from just watching Cosmos launch a PoS chain and seeing what the successes and what the issues have been.”
But there may be more going on between Polkadot and Ethereum than a shared desire for a free internet. During Berlin’s Web3 Summit back in August, this journalist was kicked out of the press room* after it was requisitioned for a private tête-à-tête between Wood and Buterin.
At the time, a Parity spokesperson said the two were using the opportunity for a long-awaited catch-up. That could well be true.
But Polkadot is set to launch later this year, only a few months before the scheduled launch of Ethereum 2.0 in 2020. As both projects approach a high-profile launch, the rivals may have more to discuss than shared ideals.
*Editor’s note: After a discussion with Peter Mauric, Head of Public Affairs at Parity, we are confident that our journalist was asked to vacate a room due to a misunderstanding, and not due to any deliberate effort to favor other participants at the Web3 Conference.
This article has been updated.