Finding Meaning in the Beercoin

I always thought of fintechs as being one of the most boring things on earth. So when my best friend from childhood one day approached me with the idea of founding exactly that — a fintech — I harshly told him that I will have no part in that.

However, he just kept telling me about some “Beercoin” and how great it was and that he received positive feedback from everyone he explained the idea to and that it can’t be that complicated to implement and… STOP IT!

I surrendered. From all the ideas he had in the past that always somehow involved trying to make me programming something, this one was actually good. Up to this point I always rejected his requests of that kind, knowing that much more work than he could imagine was necessary. This time, though, there was real passion in his eyes and he really wanted to push the idea. And so it happened to me that I suddenly sat in the notary’s office, signing a company forming contract.

Still, I somehow hoped I could peacefully work on my master’s thesis in computer science while sometimes doing a bit for this project. I still didn’t have that much of a plan about this cryptocurrency stuff after all. I understood that we needed a good presentation of the project, then get funds by people who like the idea and finally can start developing it. I thought my actual work would start when my education was finished and money in the company.

That thought proved to be wrong. The founding time was chaotic and lacked good communications: We are a team scattered across two cities. Suddenly, there was an Airdrop based on Google Docs, while the Beercoin Smart Contract only existed in an early stage. Suddenly, 20% time contribution became 100%.

I didn’t have a relaxed Christmas time. After quickly building up a proper section on our website while the Airdrop was running, I digged deeper and deeper in the Ethereum ecosystem. I relentlessly developed, made errors, deployed contracts, dismissed them, but finally — the Beercoin was alive, and it was good.

Thanks to this project, I learned the deep meaning of the blockchain. IT security hasn’t been my background and without my dear friend, I might have never properly read an introduction on cryptocurrencies at all. But amusingly, it happend that I became an expert on this topic, understanding not only the basics, but also the deeper foundations.

I am now a strong believer in cryptocurrencies and I think decentralized money can lead to a better society. A society where the individual alone is responsible for his or her own fortune and no institutions have remote access on it.

Society as a whole seems not yet ready for it. Cryptocurrencies appear complicated and people seem not to be interested in investing time in it. It’s true that I don’t like beer. But I know many people like it. So I strongly believe that Beercoin can contribute to the acceptance of cryptocurrency in general society by using a well-known product as a medium. It can be means of transitioning society from centralized to decentralized money.

This project might seem silly at the first glance. But it has the potential to change the world as we know it.

Christoph Niese, co-founder and developer