Blockchain But …

Blockchain But. Image credit: Jake Young, from Unplash.

When working for a large software company, my team used to follow an agile development methodology named Scrum. To be honest, I never liked this methodology. It took away the creativity and fun from software development by forcing you to break down your tasks into very small chunks which you had to meticulously test and document within a given short time frame called “cycle” - just to throw it away during the next cycle once plans changed or reality kicked in. Nevertheless, for large software projects spread over multiple distributed teams, this methodology proved to be useful.

One thing I do recall, that the Scrum advocates always pitched about, is that you have to follow Scrum to the letter and not do what they used to call “Scrum But,” which means I’m following Scrum but I’m only taking some components of it which are more convenient to implement and I keep doing everything else the old way. This factor was always associated with unsuccessful and bad Scrum implementations and served as an indication for lack of understanding of the core principals.

Recently, I’m seeing a similar trend in the blockchain world, I call it “Blockchain But”. For example, I’m running a blockchain but the token has no value, but there is only a limited number of block generators, but I’m replacing the working consensus algorithm with something which is simple to hack, but I’m setting up some centralization mechanism, but I assume all parties are honest, but I assume nobody will spam my network, but I can censor transactions, but I store most data off chain, but I don’t care about blockchain bloat and on and on.

All these “buts” usually represent lack of understanding of decentralization and the basic principals behind the blockchain revolution. Furthermore, such compromises lead to sub-standard implementations which may prove insecure or dysfunctional in the long run.

I’m all for pragmatism but some of these “buts” are simply testaments of bad design decisions or lack of understanding. At Jelurida we develop blockchain products with no “But”!