Since this is a guide about blockchain development on Ethereum, it is required to know how the Ethereum blockchain works, and the changes that it will undergo in the future so as to be prepared for what’s to come as a developer. If you have done web development before you can think of changes as a new ECMAScript standard, a new browser compile target (ie. WASM), a new engine (V8), etc… The Ethereum blockchain is constantly evolving and quite a few changes will be put in place in the future before the core technologies of the network will start to ossify.
A good way to get started with how Ethereum works is to watch Austin Griffith’s ETH.BUILD YouTube playlist where he illustrates how various parts of the Ethereum blockchain work.
“In the Ethereum universe, there is a single, canonical computer (called the Ethereum Virtual Machine, or EVM) whose state everyone on the Ethereum network agrees on. Everyone who participates in the Ethereum network (every Ethereum node) keeps a copy of the state of this computer. Additionally, any participant can broadcast a request for this computer to perform arbitrary computation. Whenever such a request is broadcast, other participants on the network verify, validate, and carry out (“execute”) the computation. This execution causes a state change in the EVM, which is committed and propagated throughout the entire network.” (source: ethereum.org documentation)
In order to learn the basics of Ethereum, go through the ethereum.org documentation. Here are links for each section:
- Intro to Ethereum
- Intro to Ether
- Intro to dapps
- Web2 vs. Web3
- Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM)
- Gas (skip the Opcodes section, we’ll revisit that later)
- Nodes and clients
- Consensus mechanisms
- Governance / EIP process
- Ethereum roadmap - Endgame
This graphic shows all the different changes which are being implemented to Ethereum in the upcoming years. It’s not necessary to understand what this is all about, but it is good to know about. I suggest watching the video resource appended after the graphic to learn more about what these flowcharts mean.
- Further reading