What is the Future Of The Internet?
The Internet Era has been going through a variety of stages, each with their own struggles and breakthroughs. Lots of the innovations of today’s era are looked upon with a questionable gaze, blockchain being one of them.
Many disruptive projects are emerging from blockchain technology, yet the world is not ready to accept that kind of innovation.
When people hear about blockchain, they instantly think about cryptocurrency, mostly Bitcoin and all of the bad press associated with it whether that’s volatility of the markets, scams, hacks of the exchanges and so on and so forth.
But the blockchain is more than just the bad labels it gets from the public eye.
In fact, if we go back in time, we’ll see that most of the innovation has been treated with some degree of hostility. Whether that’s in the Internet industry, automotive, science, or any other innovation.
People are used to the comfort of daily life, change is a stressor, and we as humans tend to avoid it for our best. However, most of the time by avoiding the change we are avoiding progress.
Surely, each change brings some drawbacks with it, you can’t have it all so to speak, but change is necessary for our society to evolve and grow. Growth comes from taking risks and seizing opportunities.
One of the opportunities of today’s society is the blockchain and not many people (in comparison to those who do) realize the opportunity the blockchain holds.
At the time of writing the capitalization of the cryptocurrency/blockchain market is around $366 billion.
Which means that there are plenty of believers in this industry; some are in it just to speculate on the price changes and gain profit, while many others are for the long haul.
Those “many” are the crypto enthusiasts and visionaries, creating beautiful tech to change the world for the better. Each project has its own positioning on the market and addresses the pain points of companies and users of the industry. There are thousands and thousands of entrepreneurs, developers, investors, managers, industry leaders, endorsers, in the industry to support it and with a little more than a decade of experience behind it, the crypto/blockchain industry has grown immensely.
It went through from just being a store of value with Bitcoin to revolutionary tech for data storage and transmission, smart contracts for doing business, security protocols to safeguard data, and a completely new approach towards data ownership and management.
Why was there a need for the blockchain in the first place?
There were several reasons behind that, but one of the main ones is to allow people to take control over their money. The traditional finance system has been and is failing us more and more by the day. The gatekeepers at large corporations control the asset flow and get to decide which transaction is approved and which is not, which deposit should be released and which should be withheld, plus the government also has its take on this matter because it partners with such corporations to conduct surveillance over the finance flow of its citizens.
Only the owner of the asset/funds should have to decide what happens with their own money. After all, it’s they who earned it and not the company that is just providing them the means for storage of the money.
Thus after multiple historical failures to safeguard the assets of their clients and citizens, the traditional financial system naturally gave way for a better alternative. Of course this didn’t happen on its own, but the constant failures of the system to support a transparent and fair financial trading infrastructure created a need for a more efficient way of processing payments.
The initial revolutionary idea of the blockchain was to have complete privacy and security over one’s assets. Through the introduction of cryptography the blockchain managed to achieve that.
That was the beginning, then the blockchain evolved into being an intermediary between parties to conducting business; the smart contracts era with Ethereum out of which sprung thousands of projects each having their own vector has opened the door for other use cases of cryptocurrency, use cases outside of storage of value.
The blockchain has been driving the Internet to move beyond centralized services with gatekeepers; this concept has been prevailing since the late 90’s early 2000’s. Today’s Internet is content-driven, but the infrastructure is not there. With daily hacks on the network the Internet and the companies that run on it are not capable of providing a safe environment. Any corporation out there, especially a big one, has experienced some sort of a privacy or security breach. Most of it has to do with the tech behind today’s Internet.
The protocols that are used for data transmission have many weak links and are a target for perpetual attacks.
This wasn’t such a big problem back in the day when the Internet was created because the main purpose of the initial Internet was resource sharing. Many computers connected together on the network were mainly used for computing, not content. Enthusiasts that rolled up their sleeves and buried their heads to discover new ways of processing and sending data were not always accepted with open arms. Let’s face it, people just didn’t get it at the time, it didn’t have such a wide use case.
The blockchain today experiences somewhat similar problems by not being fully accepted by the society, even though, as mentioned before, the blockchain has many supporters, probably many more than the initial Internet had.
As the Internet made a switch from resource sharing to content delivery in the 90’s the need for speed, security, and scalability had started to arise. For several years the methods of data transmission that were inherited from the 70’s seemed to be getting the job done, but as the network grew and payment methods were introduced, we started seeing all kinds of problems: lagging, timeouts, server downtimes, phishing, scams, spam, network congestion, violation of net-neutrality principles, and many more issues of similar nature.
In this whole evolution process, blockchain does seem like the next logical step because it addresses many of the problems that the technical foundation of the 70’s is not able to address. Yes, you heard it right! We are still using the principles of data delivery that were invented in the 70’s! One of the protocols of that time is creating problems for today’s Internet; that is the TCP/IP protocol, a protocol that we’ve discussed many times in our other articles. Don’t hesitate to check them out ;)
Blockchain is definitely not a perfect, utopian solution, it has its own flaws and at the same time it’s a step forward for the many things that the current Internet is struggling with, especially when it comes to security and data ownership.
By combining the blockchain with other great tech inventions of the modern era such as Ai, 5G, Big Data, NDN; heck, maybe even VR :) we would be able to take a step forward towards a greater sense or privacy, security, less hacks of servers, websites, more stable connection, a fair game for all through net-neutrality principles, faster transaction processing times, greater scalability etc.
If you’d like to learn about some awesome, cutting-edge blockchain initiatives, then we advise you start with the links down below: