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Ethereum’s Long-Awaited ‘Merge’ Reaches the Finish Line

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The moment finally arrived, in the last minutes before midnight on the West Coast on Wednesday.After years of delays, discussions and frantic experimentation, the popular cryptocurrency platform Ethereum completed a long-awaited software upgrade known as the Merge, shifting to a more environmentally sustainable framework.Ethereum is arguably the most crucial platform in the crypto industry, a layer of software infrastructure that forms the basis of thousands of applications handling more than $50 billion in customer funds. The upgrade is expected to reduce Ethereum’s energy consumption and set the stage for future improvements that will make the platform easier and cheaper to use.Celebrations erupted on a YouTube livestream where engineers and researchers who worked on the Merge had gathered to mark the milestone. It was a rare moment of joy in a grim year for crypto that saw a devastating market crash drain nearly $1 trillion from the industry, forcing some prominent crypto companies into bankruptcy.“This is going as well as it could so far,” said Danny Ryan, an Eth …

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