Quick thoughts on the state of Bitcoin
Joost Schreve

We can probably predict with near certainty that the specific technology now used in bitcoin / blockchain will necessarily have undergo changes … even those who are deeply involved won’t know how major these changes have to be until they are implementing the changes … but the general impetus for the interest in these trust networks or similar fintech ideas will expand and expand. There will be a better bitcoin, a better blockchain … but there will always need to be something like bitcoin, something like blockchain and the reliance on those things will grow over time.

There is a giant and GROWING problem with being able to really trust politically-driven monetary supply … if the Hajj stampede is a fluid dynamics problem [and it is], then the implosion of the US dollar will be a mother-of-all-tsunamis tidal wave problem, because human beings simply have not developed those basal, subconscious, intuitive capabilities to behave intelligently, rationally, sanely in very large groups when SHTF. There’s no sane reaction other than covering up and trying to survive if you’re in a Hajj stampede — the rational thing is to take evasive steps long before you get into that kind of situation.

Perhaps people can stay away from a pilgrimage to Mecca or an oversold soccer game or a theater/nightclub that is obviously over capacity … or other small-scale stampedes. But hardly anyone can just stay away from participating in the economy. So no one should dismiss the underlying things driving bitcoin … and it’s not JUST a #fintech thing. The completely rational insecurity, fear and doubt about the US currency ripples over into any medium of exchange, any fungible asset. There are also big problems with being able to really trust other assets, eg. a potential employee’s abilities/skills/ambition … so we invest a LOT in proxy trust networks, eg accredited university that [supposedly] only grant college diplomas to people with abilities/skills/ambition. Of course, the real demand for a better trust network will EXPLODE when the next major collapse happen … if faith in the US dollar wanes, the interest thus far in bitcoin will look teensy.

TRUST is probably a more fundamental human need than security, safety, clothing, housing, even food … we humans desperately want to be able to take trust and trustworthiness for granted because we really, really NEED it. Trust underpins the human interactions necessary to produce and distribute every other thing our lives depend upon.

The bitcoin/blockchain space is intensely intriguing if nothing else. BitFury has raised a lot of money and is moving ahead with a $100M investment in Georgia … but WHY Georgia … hopefully, it’s not just too-cheap-to-turn-down, state-subsidized power, right? Why aren’t Intel, AMD, ARM, and the others with expertise in squeezing more computing power out of silicon more publicly involved and out in front of the bitcoin hardware parade, doing more to put “Moore’s Law on steroids” with R&D the ASICs/FPGAs and other boutique chips that are being built for bitcoin mining, ie. if it’s a gold rush, why not at least sell shovels and Levi’s to the miners? Finally, how can bitcoin/blockchain be more efficiently and effectively executed? Does something like the GridCoin Distributed-Proof-of-Research (DPOR) represent a superior proof-of-work system, using hashing power to mine scientific distributed computing BOINC problems … or are there OTHER computational workloads that would represent a more efficient, more effective, more coherent AND just plain leaner, simpler, better way to mine, digest and add value [and prove work] from mountain ranges of raw data?

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