THE HUMBLE LIBERTARIAN

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Monday, December 24, 2018

18 Blockchain Predictions for 2018

By: Andrew Keys
ConsenSys


1.Bitcoin is the generation 0 of blockchain technology… the opening act… the gateway drug … the first inning … MySpace.

We must thank her for her work, as none of the following technology would be available without Satoshi’s Bitcoin, but we’re about to go much, much, further. While Satoshi converged a database structure with peer-to-peer networking, cryptographic tokenization, consensus formation algorithms, and game theoretical economic incentivization to create a means for trustless digital storage and transmission of value, the “Digital Gold” use case, is only one use case.

Bitcoin as a digital store of value is the least interesting use of blockchain … There, I said it.

Far more interesting are programmable money, programmable asset transfer, and shared, tamper-resistant business logic. People fixated on Bitcoin are missing the fact that we’re verging upon the next generation of the world-wide-web.

The Bitcoin protocol is the world’s largest modern-day abacus; it only enables us to move a bead (or coin) from one side to the other. The ability to do this on a global, permissionless substrate is not trivial. But I can’t overemphasize the limited scope of this initial design, due to its use of a virtual machine which isn’t Turing-complete.

Here’s an example of a Bitcoin script:

scriptPubKey: OP_DUP OP_HASH160 OP_EQUALVERIFY OP_CHECKSIG
scriptSig:

The above script should serve to explain the inherent limitations of the Bitcoin scripting language. Ethereum can be thought of as Bitcoin + everything else, with a high level software language reminiscent of Javascript.

While still being able to store and transmit value (the single Bitcoin use case), we’re also able to program our agreements using Ethereum. Here are two examples of typical agreements that are now easily codified using Ethereum’s Solidity programming language.

Read more at ConsenSys.

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