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Archive for the ‘blockchain’ tag: Page 4

Nov 15, 2016

Voting On The Blockchain — Fred Wilson | AVC

Posted by in categories: computing, cryptocurrencies

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“I haven’t placed a vote on a blockchain yet, but it’s so simple to do that I expect I will be doing it frequently soon enough.”

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Oct 31, 2016

Diminishing Bitcoin Mining Rewards

Posted by in categories: bitcoin, cryptocurrencies, economics, internet, privacy

By now, most Bitcoin and Blockchain enthusiasts are aware of four looming issues that threaten the conversion of Bitcoin from an instrument of academics, criminal activity, and closed circle communities into a broader instrument that is fungible, private, stable, ubiquitous and recognized as a currency—and not just an investment unit or a transaction instrument.

These are the elephants in the room:

  • Unleashing high-volume and speedy transactions
  • Governance and the concentration of mining influence among pools, geography or special interests
  • Privacy & Anonymity
  • Dwindling mining incentives (and the eventual end of mining). Bitcoin’s design eventually drops financial incentives for transaction validation. What then?

As an Op-Ed pundit, I value original content. But the article, below, on Bitcoin fungibility, and this one on the post-incentive era, are a well-deserved nod to inspired thinking by other writers on issues that loom over the cryptocurrency community.

This article at Coinidol comes from an unlikely source: Jacob Okonya is a graduate student in Uganda. He is highly articulate, has a keen sense of market economics and the evolution of technology adoption. He is also a quick study and a budding columnist.

Continue reading “Diminishing Bitcoin Mining Rewards” »

Jul 20, 2016

In Blockchain We Trust

Posted by in categories: bitcoin, education

I was a guest on the Robot Overlordz podcast again recently, and was asked about my post on Medium for KnowledgeWorks called “Preparing for Hybrid Schools and Jobs.” The conversation with Mike and Matt took some interesting turns, as always, and they gmediumot me thinking about some really important questions when it comes to blockchain and society, namely: assuming blockchain lives up to it’s reputation as a ‘truth machine,’ as I refer to it in my post, or a ‘revolution,’ as the Tapscotts say, why is there now a need for a revolutionary technology to enhance trust?

Although blockchain has captured the attention of the financial, management consulting and consumer goods industries, it hasn’t quite taken hold in education yet. KnowledgeWorks has published a fantastic report on the possibilities. I suggest in my post that the rise of hybrid jobs will generate support for hybrid schooling, and blockchain may be the technology that is best suited to track and communicate qualifications. The World Economic Forum said it best: “Farewell Job Title, Hello Skill Set.” If we are to be evaluated on our skills and experience, we must have some reliable way of guarding and transmitting that information.

But why is it that we need to enhance trust among students and teachers, employees and employers? I think that the facts that college students (some who didn’t even graduate) owe massive student loans, though worker’s wages have gone stagnant, play into this tension. How can students trust schools to provide the education they need, considering the high cost and the gamble that it may never really be recouped?

We are beginning to see slight signals that things are changing, at least a little, on the remuneration side, and it’s possible that a truth machine could help restore trust to hierarchical relationships (student/university and employee/employer) that are extremely out of balance. But what is at risk in assuming a technology can reverse human corruption?

Jun 22, 2016

Blog Posts for Postnormal Times

Posted by in categories: bitcoin, business, cryptocurrencies

blocksLast week I dipped my toes in the waters of the Lifeboat blog and shared a link about blockchain technology. If you haven’t heard about blockchain technology yet, you can read about it here, here, here, here, here…you get the picture. Blockchain has tons of potential, and appears to also attract hype and money. All which goes to say, there has been a lot of buzz about its social and economic potential. But there is another aspect of blockchain that deserves some futurist exploration, which is that it signals we live in Postnormal Times.

Postnormal Times (PNT) is a fantastic foresight concept that I will focus on in my upcoming Lifeboat posts. There is an underlying theory to it; Ziauddin Sardar explains the entire idea and how it fits into futures studies. Ziauddin Sardar with John Sweeney have expanded the work into a futurist method called The Three Tomorrows of Postnormal Times. It’s well worth reading up on if you enjoy a futurist approach to your work and studies.

I’m still a beginner, but essentially the idea is that we are now in time is a period best characterized as “postnormal,” meaning that the usual ways of solving problems and making progress have stopped working. Our go-to responses, based on all the previously reliable ways of being in and understanding the world are becoming irrelevant and dysfunctional. The simplest way to introduce Sardar’s concept is the three C’s: complexity, chaos and contradictions. These are the key characteristics of postnormal times which I will be exploring in my posts about technology and humanity. I believe the PNT perspective leads to some useful observations about the direction of society over the next decades.

Back to my blockchain example: the Raketa watch company is implementing blockchain in manufacturing, which will protect inventory from counterfeiting. This development signals PNT because it speaks to the complexity of globalized financial and consumer markets. In this case, so intricate as to require a new, high-tech, largely automated and seemingly fail-proof technology. PNT is evident when previous methods of running a company are no longer sound. Enter blockchain to navigate this new business condition.

Continue reading “Blog Posts for Postnormal Times” »

May 27, 2016

Is a Blockchain a Blockchain if it Isn’t?

Posted by in categories: bitcoin, business, cryptocurrencies, finance, innovation, internet, open source, software, transparency

Anyone who has heard of Bitcoin knows that it is built on a mechanism called The Blockchain. Most of us who follow the topic are also aware that Bitcoin and the blockchain were unveiled—together—in a whitepaper by a mysterious developer, under the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto.

That was eight years ago. Bitcoin is still the granddaddy of all blockchain-based networks, and most of the others deal with alternate payment coins of one type or another. Since Bitcoin is king, the others are collectively referred to as ‘Altcoins’.

But the blockchain can power so much more than coins and payments. And so—as you might expect—investors are paying lots of attention to blockchain startups or blockchain integration into existing services. Not just for payments, but for everything under the sun.

Think of Bitcoin as a product and the blockchain as a clever network architecture that enables Bitcoin and a great many future products and institutions to do more things—or to do these things better, cheaper, more robust and more blockchain-01secure than products and institutions built upon legacy architectures.

Continue reading “Is a Blockchain a Blockchain if it Isn’t?” »

May 18, 2016

How Blockchain Will End World Poverty

Posted by in categories: bitcoin, cryptocurrencies, economics, encryption, geopolitics, law, transparency

Steve Forbes sits across Brian Singer, a partner at William Blair, as Blair explains the potential of blockhain encryption to empower individuals. He also explains why credit card companies are beginning to embrace a technology that undermines their high fees.

https://youtu.be/CecpCepnkAU

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May 6, 2016

Bitcoin Pundicy: A Lifeboat Perspective

Posted by in categories: bitcoin, cryptocurrencies, economics, encryption, government, internet

Here in the Lifeboat Blog, I have the luxury of pontificating on existential, scientific and technical topics that beg for an audience—and sometimes—a pithy opinion. Regular Lifeboat readers know that I was recently named most viewed Bitcoin writer at Quora under a Nom de Plume.

Quora is not a typical Blog. It is an educational site. Questions and numerous answers form the basis of a crowd-sourced popularity contest. Readers can direct questions to specific experts or armchair analysts. A voting algorithm leads to the emergence of some very knowledgeable answers, even among laypersons and ‘armchair’ experts.

During the past few weeks, Quora readers asked me a litany of queries about Bitcoin and the blockchain, and so I am sharing selected Q&A here at Lifeboat. This is my professional field—and so, just as with Mr. Trump, I must resist an urge to be verbose or bombastic. My answers are not the shortest, but they are compact. Some employ metaphors, but they explain complex ideas across a broad audience.

Continue reading “Bitcoin Pundicy: A Lifeboat Perspective” »

Sep 24, 2015

Banks Embrace Bitcoin’s Heart but Not Its Soul — By Tim Simonite | MIT Technology Review

Posted by in category: bitcoin

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“Major financial institutions like some technical features of Bitcoin but are building their own versions that leave out the digital cash and built-in economics.”

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Sep 15, 2015

What is a Blockchain?

Posted by in categories: bitcoin, cryptocurrencies, economics, finance, government, internet, transparency

This short post is not about Bitcoin. It’s about a new method of organizing and arbitrating communications that is at the heart of Bitcoin

We hear a lot about the blockchain. We also hear a lot of misconceptions about its purpose and benefits. Some have said that it represents a threat to banks or to governments. Nonsense! It is time to form a simple, non-political, and non-economic explanation…

What is a Blockchain?

The blockchain is a distributed approach to bookkeeping. It offers an empowering, efficient and trusted way for disparate parties to reach consensus. It is “empowering”, because conclusions built on a blockchain can be constructed in a way that is inherently fair, transparent, and resistant to manipulation.

Continue reading “What is a Blockchain?” »

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