While Bitcoin can be described as the father of cryptocurrencies, Ethereum is surely the mother of smart contracts. It was the first blockchain to expand on the functionalities of Bitcoin and allow for the development of decentralized applications (dapps). With the longest operational history of a Proof of Work consensus other than Bitcoin, Ethereum is widely considered as the safest smart contract platform. However, the way transactions are verified also brings significant downside for any developer in form of the high transaction fees’ volatility. This problem is on its way to being solved through a future network upgrade, changing the consensus algorithm to Proof of Stake. For now, dapps with high volumes of processed data will often decide to only store the most important data on-chain (such as token ownership), and keep the rest off-chain.
Ethereum uses Solidity:
Inheritance and libraries supported
For more on Solidity, see documentation.
For developers looking for safest and most proven environment to develop in.
For developers who are either willing to deal with transaction fees’ volatility, or to store non-essential data off-chain.
To learn more about developing on Ethereum, see Developer Resources.