Bitcoin and it’s underlying Blockchain are transforming the world around us…In much the same way the internet laid claim to the tech zeitgeist back in the early 90’s.
The naysayers, much like in the early 90’s are still around and just as vociferous.
“The internet is just a passing fad.” ~ Bill Gates (1993)
“Bitcoin bubble is worse than tulip bulbs. Bitcoin is a fraud and it won’t end well.” ~ Jamie Dimon (CHAIRMAN & CEO, J P MORGAN CHASE)
…thankfully though, time and experience allow for some self reflection.
Sometimes we do get taken by surprise. For example, when the Internet came along, we had it as a fifth or sixth priority. ~ Bill Gates (1998)
“I regret making that comment” ~ Jamie Dimon (Later, when asked about the above Bitcoin Quote).
Mr Gates however, is still uncertain about Bitcoin, yet curiously, Microsoft along with other tech luminaries are investing in blockchain in a significant way. IBM, Twitter, Google (Alphabet), Apple, Oracle, Amazon, Alibaba…to name but a few.
Indeed, Blockchain is being considered by more than half of the world’s large corporations, with over 60% looking to have viable products by close of 2018.
Most large economies are also researching nation based cryptocurrencies. USA, China, Russia, Brazil and the UK are all researching replacements for their state backed fiat currencies (not backed by a physical commodities such as gold). Venezuela is openly trading it’s Petrodollar, a cryptocurrency backed by the countries oil reserves. Politically, make of that what you will but it still demonstrates a nation sized use case.
Blockchain Nova Scotia?
EVEN the banks, including central banks, reserves and <ahem> J P Morgan Chase are utilizing the technology. All the while sending out missives and obituaries almost always maligning Bitcoin. Given that the Blockchain technology (Bitcoin) was designed to undermine and replace the present failing economic system. It does pose something of an existential threat to centralized national currencies and their glowing-hot printing presses AKA ‘inflation machines’.
For those that still hold the belief that Bitcoin is simply a vehicle for money laundering, Canadian roulette sites or terrorism funding, along with the now tiresome, Ponzi scheme and fraud twaddle. Then a recent study by The Foundation for Defence of Democracies should go some way to allay fears. The study claimed that between 2013 and 2016, less than 1% of Bitcoin use was used for illicit purposes. Now, compare that to the US$ or any other major national fiat currency? Can they honestly say the same?
Allow me to highlight some of the advantages of Blockchain (distributed ledger technology), Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies:
‘Banking the unbanked’ Personally, this is the big one, an estimated 3-5 billion people do not have access to either banks and/or financial services. Globally, that’s a lot of potential new entrepreneurs and associated businesses. Not to mention, potentially lifting billions out of poverty. Hope, where there is precious little presently.
Flexible…you might say!
Immutable No changes can be made to the Blockchain without a network consensus. The Bitcoin blockchain for instance, has never been hacked (exchanges have though) and has 99.9% uptime, this, in 10 years of existence.
Permanent “What happens on the blockchain stays on the blockchain”. Public blockchains are always accessible, just like online blackjack
NO intermediaries Person to person (peer to peer) transactions allow users to bypass banks and other 3rd parties.
Automated All additions/transactions on the blockchain are automatic and confirmed by the network.
Decentralisation of consensus A central authority (such as a bank) acting as a clearing-house for transactions and validations is simply not required. Please note: Most blockchain network nodes can be run on regular computers.
Speed This is all heading toward near instant monetary transactions and ‘atomic (currency) swaps’, regardless of geography and amount being transferred.
Lower costs Very low overheads, another clear benefit over the existing system.
Near-impossible loss of data Every miner/node operator on the network has a full copy of the blockchain for validation purposes…and “What happens on the blockchain stays on the blockchain” A great anti-fraud mechanism!
Transparent Public blockchain transactions are always publicly available. Please note, only Blockchain addresses are seen, no personal information is stored unless required or volunteered.
Solving the double-spend problem Spending the same money twice has been effectively negated…verified peer to peer information and transactions see to this.
Security (encryption through cryptography) Only the parties exchanging information / money etc can see the actual data. Military grade cryptography ensures the integrity of the blockchain network. Hence the common umbrella term ‘cryptos’.
So, what does all this have to do with Nova Scotia?
Simply put, Nova Scotia and it’s capital Halifax could benefit significantly from early adoption. There is an abundance of high quality office space not only in the city but in many of our satellite communities.
Nova Scotia’s also has a number of quality universities and a new generation looking to forge careers in the new high tech industries. Add to this, the prospect of well paying salaries (Blockchain developers in the US earn up to $130k a year).
Blockchain related jobs are expanding at an exponential rate with the field now employing hundreds of thousands people globally.
To create a Blockchain economic zone will take some bold leadership but the potential rewards are golden in nature! Even Simpleton, in the Grimm fairytale was astute enough, to not pass up on a golden egg laying opportunity.
Thanks for reading.
Please visit my free guide on blockchainnews.ca
I’m also a 20 year veteran of internet design and development with a professional interest in Blockchain research and implementation. I’m also partial to a little crypto trading. If you are a small to medium size enterprise or organization looking to potentially adopt this technology. Please do not hesitate to contact me.