Proof-of-Work, digital money’s longest-serving form of cryptographic proof, has died after a lengthy reign of over a decade. While the world slept, it passed away quietly at 6-43am UTC and was immediately succeeded by Proof-of-Stake.
The first announcement came from Ethereum Palace in a tweet, which simply read: “Proof-Of-Work died peacefully on the Blockchain this afternoon. The successor to the throne, Ethereum-The-Second, will remain on the Blockchain this evening and asks for your compassion and prayers at this difficult time.”
As news filtered through of its passing, well-wishers gathered at Ethereum Palace, placing forks and other memorabilia outside the gates. Meanwhile, exchanges paused trading as a mark of respect.
At midday, a sombre service took place at London’s Westminster Abbey where the new governance was officially installed, ending with a rousing rendition of “God Save Proof of Stake.”
Proof-of-Work’s mining rig will lie in state until Monday, allowing mourners to file past and pay their respects.
Police explained the congestion: “This kind of set up can only process a few per minute and we are expecting it to be rammed”, said PC Puns.
Queues of well-wishers wishing to pay their respects are already five miles long, with many well-wishers expressing surprise at how they reacted. ‘I burst into tears when I heard,’ said one. ‘I’ve always felt it served us well, and with dignity – but I never realized how strongly I felt about it.’
Proof of Work reigned for so long that most have never known any other form of governance, and so a period of adjustment now seems inevitable.
“Proof of Work was a dependable presence for many years”, said our governance correspondent, Christian Boot-Licker. It maintained the consensus in our blockchain with grace and dignity. It even overcame its annus horribilis in 2016, when its credibility was damaged by a series of splits, to become a beloved institution. But all good things come to an end. The reign of Proof-of-Stake promises to be more modern, with a green agenda at its heart. It’s been waiting in the wings for years so it should be ready.”
After Ethereum’s success, Bitcoin Maximalists were unavailable for comment. For once.