A smart look at three alternatives to the Bitcoin blockchain — Ethereum, Ripple Labs and Eris — and their respective shortcomings.
What has become evident with this most recent crop of blockchain newcomers is that in order for a blockchain to succeed, it needs to be a public resource. This lesson harkens back to the early days of the Internet, where many of the companies who saw the Internet’s potential embarked upon a short-lived and largely fruitless “Intranet” strategy whereby the network effect of the Internet was squandered in an attempt to retain complete control of its users.
The value of the Internet’s network effect wasn’t immediately obvious at first. So too with Bitcoin do we see many newcomers scratching their heads in an attempt to replace the current blockchain with a series of controlled silos.