Today we start a new mini-series focusing on the blockchain revolution, how it can influence the business environment and the early adopters of disruptive technologies. It’s a series about the people behind the decisions. About the people playing the long game. About practitioners. The people behind the blockchain!
A Few Words on Mr. Antonopoulos
If you think about how relatively new the field of blockchain technology is, you can’t stop and wonder at the large amount of content and expertise Andreas has amassed in this 10–11 year period. His own website dubbs him as having “than 300 videos, talks, interview about open blockchain technology”, “Lead host on Let’s Talk Bitcoin, a syndicated talk show focused on Bitcoin and crypto-currencies”, and the short version of his bio tells an even better story:
“In 2014, Antonopoulos authored the groundbreaking book, Mastering Bitcoin (O’Reilly Media), widely considered to be the best technical guide ever written about the technology. His second book, The Internet of Money, unveiled the “why” of bitcoin — and became a bestseller on Amazon — and led to the wildly successful follow-up The Internet of Money Volume Two. His fourth book, Mastering Ethereum (O’Reilly Media) was published in December of 2018.
He is a teaching fellow with the University of Nicosia, serves on the Oversight Committee for the Bitcoin Reference Rate at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, and has appeared as an expert witness in hearings around the world, including the Australian Senate Banking Committee and the Canadian Senate Commerce, Banking and Finance Committee.”
He is often taking both Bitcoin and blockchain technology’s side, advocating for the gains of its applicability and justifying its recent downfall by arguing:
“Volatility is an inevitable fact that arises from the small size and limited liquidity of crypto markets at the moment. When it’s downward volatility, it creates panicked sentiment and losses. When it’s upward volatility, it creates a wave of fear-of-missing-out (FOMO) investors with very little understanding of the technology fundamentals or principles.”
The image he paints towards Bitcoin’s evolution and constant change is one of an element that will continue to disrupt the financial industry, leading towards a more connected and decentralized society, handling opportunities even for those that cannot afford traditional finance institutions.
“When Bitcoin succeeded in the first ten years it did so in the face of incredible censorship, incredible disbelief, incredible cynicism and yet the power of the technology itself proved it’s worth no matter what people said.”
Andreas and His Perspective on Open Blockchains
“For the first time in history, it takes one of humanity’s oldest technologies, money, and one of the most important aspects of human behavior, which is trust, and it embeds these in an open, interoperable, network protocol without central control. This has never happened before.”
His claim is that technology saw such a big development evolution due to open-source software and that any future growth will be achieved in the best way using the same methods. He talks about the possible danger of advancing towards a closed blockchain system, owned by private companies, basically leading to the same type of context we want to leave from in the present.
In order to see big advancements, technology needs to be accessible to all the people that can contribute, and bring their input to the development of decentralized applications, no matter the industry they aim to disrupt. Full cooperation between peers is an aim towards which blockchain has aimed since its inception in 2008 when the platform sustained the Bitcoin creation.
“An increasingly global world needs neutral, open and borderless finance and governance systems. Open public blockchains will provide those, even against the extreme discomfort, opposition, and interference of nation-states and corporations. The world needs this too much and the technology itself cannot be uninvented or stopped.”
In order to see anything succeed, you need to deploy patience and become aware of how your software solution will unfold given the different market and technological evolution contexts. Patience wins the game. After all, you are learning by looking at the best! Thank you for following this new series.
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