Blockchain: the antinomy of reality and future
The following article comes from the orange paper Author Wu Xiao
What are the cornerstones of rights and rules in the virtual world?
Someone asked me over and over again. What can a blockchain do? Is it possible to do what your blockchain can do with other technologies? Blockchain is not landing, not practical, and pseudo-scientific. In the past year, I have heard too many, too many similar words so that many friends around me even believe these views today. I think that people’s understanding of blockchain today has limited the imagination of our entire industry. It was as if the bird had lost its wings and was imprisoned in a cage. I also don’t agree with some ideas in the blockchain, but I prefer to believe in the possibility of the blockchain.
After much struggle, I decided to write this article.
It’s also an answer for myself-why is there a blockchain?
“We all live in the gutter, but someone still has to look up at the stars.”
All blockchain attempts in the financial industry are a very small and cautious attempt.
Looking back at Facebook Libra’s project, most people know that this is a project that wants to rob mintage. However, if we are thinking one step forward, we can glimpse more interesting facts. Libra is actually a package of Internet companies. It has the largest population in the world, its own rules and systems, and is robbing mintage. To put it simply, they are grassroots leaders of Internet companies, pulling a package of multinational companies, grabbing a place in the next 10 years. This place is not in the economic sense but in political status.
The intersection of the virtual world and the physical world
To explain why it is a place in politics, we need to think about the future of the virtual world first. I think that more than 90% of human activities in the future will be in the virtual world. This future may be uncertain in 20, 30, 50 years. Whether it is scientific research, art, teaching, experiment, work, things not being created by physical rules, it can help humans to conduct information interaction and knowledge exploration faster.
A very powerful proof of picture is that we can imagine the scene where Stark and artificial intelligence cooperate in “Iron Man”. We bring an AR helmet, which can easily reach different environments and scenes. There can be state-of-the-art AI to help us store solid intelligence, and geniuses only need to use their fluid intelligence and creativity to make scientific research more efficient.
The virtual world can avoid stock split
The complete migration of human beings into the virtual world can avoid the mutual separation of stocks, and once and for all. If one day everyone brings an AR, they will be in such a world. Not only do we have an incremental market, but we have an infinite incremental market. Take an analogy, such as an experiment with copper sulphate in physics. Each experiment consumes a portion of sulfuric acid and a portion of copper, and a redox reaction occurs to produce copper sulphate. However, if we have sophisticated AR technology and programming capabilities in the future, we can repeat the same experiment infinitely without consuming any physical resources!
If we go one step further, our brain-computer integration and AR technology are mature. We can eat and drink in the virtual world. In the real world, it may be lying in a dormant cabin and enjoying the scientific nutritional solution. You can maintain your figure while enjoying the thrill of eating food.
In the future, more than 90% of our lives may be in this virtual world. We may be more accustomed to living in the virtual world, where it is the feeling of going home today, while returning to the real world may be more like a long-distance business trip.
Pebble in the sky of rules and institutions
In such a virtual civilization, economy and currency are definitely very important. Of course, Libra is already involved. I think if Libra can really pass, Microsoft and Amazon will jump into this field later. Still, I repeat, I think this is still a very small and cautious attempt.
So what’s more important? I think rules and institutions are more critical in such a world. Today’s Internet world is territorially managed, which is very easy to understand because most of the human time today is in reality. If a person does something bad in the Internet world, the local government will come and take him away.
But what if we humans spend 90% of our time in the virtual world in the future? In such a virtual world, if you cannot break into the door and there are no restrictions on violent institutions, then you need other credible enforcement rules. The sociological significance of the blockchain is specifically demonstrated here.
We need blockchain technology to help law enforcement transparency, because forbidding someone to connect to the network in the future may be as miserable as an exile in Siberia today; we need smart contracts to enforce it because if violations of major rules cannot be enforced, then the virtual world will become a place of revelry for the mob. We need the development of blockchain technology as the cornerstone of virtual civilization.
Today, the consensus is mining. Bitcoin, Ethereum, etc. can only be used for mining. Even if everyone uses it to keep accounts and save money, it’s a more subtle use. But consensus has never been absent in human history.
One of the simplest examples is religion, the process of making gods. Everyone’s consensus on a certain God will gradually refine his story and character. The same is true in the evolution of religion. From Orthodox to Catholic, from Catholic to Christian. From 80 volumes to 73 volumes to 66 volumes, the number of recognized scriptures and files is constantly changing, and the recognized system, etiquette and rules are constantly changing. This is a process of consensus-building, and it is the same for the establishment of a group, an organization, and a virtual civilization.
In such a virtual world, there may be multiple virtual civilizations. Different civilizations have different rules, some are more open and some more rigorous. In any case, we do not want the world to be monopolized by an organization. Whether it is a joint multinational company or the United Nations. Otherwise, it will easily become the centralized management method in the Matrix or Skynet, which is too miserable for ordinary humans.
The birth of blockchain technology has created a possibility for a more open future. Like the butterfly effect, the butterfly flaps its wings and diverges, changing the direction of the future world. Establishing a set of open, transparent, consensus, and enforcement rules and systems that can be supervised by everyone requires blockchain technology, which is the cornerstone of the entire virtual civilization.
Projection of Technology in Sociology
The development of technology has different meanings in physics and sociology. We are passionate about AI, not because AI can distinguish salmon, speech recognition and OCR today, but because we believe that in the future there can be a bunch of robots that can help us cook and humans can get countless labour. We are enthusiastic about space technology, not because today’s space technology spends a lot of money can only collect some soil on the moon, but because we expect to find more terrestrial planets, have more resources, and can expand human civilization in a distributed manner. , to avoid being a pot of asteroids.
Once the ultimate goal of technology has great significance in sociology, every bit of effort made today, every 10% to 20% improvement of the accuracy each time in the paper, and each one more planet the detector landed on, all become more meaningful. Because the accumulation of technology has never been achieved overnight, today’s accumulation is constantly consolidating the foundation for tomorrow’s outbreak. Today, VR, AR and brain-computer integration are constantly evolving. I can’t imagine a future where the blockchain is missing. People certainly don’t want the blockchain technology to be seriously absent after the era of true virtual civilization arrives 10 years later.
Today’s blockchain technology may not be as powerful yet, but please believe in the possibility of blockchain. We shouldn’t be constrained by existing cognition and external prejudice, limit innovation and even destroy the ambition to change the world. Because all the technology accumulation on the blockchain today is for the construction of a virtual civilization for the entire human race in the future.“We all live in the gutter, but someone still has to look up at the stars.”
: Wilde, Oscar. Lady Windermere’s fan. A&C Black, 2014.
: Asimov, Isaac. Pebble in the Sky. Macmillan, 2008.