I think that it is time to have a real discussion about Cryptocurrency. For years, bitcoin and its descendant coins have been used in a myriad of ways by people or computers that may or may not know each other. They did so without the help of smart contracts, AI, special mining rigs, hardware wallets, or any of the many other solutions which are on the market today or are just around the corner. We need to invest much less in complicated perceived software requirements and much more in actually using what is available.
This about it this way: Crypto is money just like Fiat money issues by a government. No one looks at a stack of $100 bills and wishes that the physical piece of paper could verify the identity of its recipient, that would be silly. Yet we seem to be focusing our interest in blockchain technology in the idea that it is lacking in some way. Paper money is produced in a special way that makes counterfeiting very difficult and thus has some fraud prevention added into it. Bitcoin and the alt-coins all already have certain traits and characteristics that make them uniquely well suited to certain tasks. Part of why paper money works is that people can verify its authenticity with some degree of certainty without the help of a third party. Yet when we begin to think about Cryptocurrencies, we are immediately bombarded with third-party solutions. Some of these will turn out to be incredible, but many of them will end up being a waste of money.
It seems to me that a better way to invest in Cryptocurrency is to stop worrying about the price of bitcoin, or EOS, or Ethereum, and find a quiet but stable currency and try to bring it into your actual life somehow. Many many more people need to actually come into possession of some small amount of currency and understand the basics of how the system works. I am not suggesting that the casual user need to deeply understand proof-of-work versus proof-of-stake, but simply how wallets and exchanges work.
Finally, I believe that I have discovered something that will make the process of using Cryptocurrency as actual money work even better– by making small changes to transaction amounts and sending other very small modifying transactions, we can attach meaning more directly into the ledger. I have been experimenting with a system of doing this for many months now and believe that it and other similar organic blockchain hacks are so open and so flexible that we are going to reach a tipping point where existing technology will form a fundamentally new and opened way for us to connect with each other and liberate our social media experience. My instinct tells me that we already today have 99% of the technology that we need for this and what needs to come next is simply training. The transaction becomes a communication of financial value, data, or both. While I have a few web solutions which can be used to reveal how this system works, it is not dependent on anything that I would produce or hold a claim to. In fact, the only way I could every be paid for people using the system that I devised is if they send me a tip. Someone could copy my ideas and without some effort I would not even know it. Others may have been doing very similar things for years, and again I may not even know. The ledger is like a radio station transmitting signals into space, but by calibrating our sensors, we can find all of the signals and can quite easily see that data.
Consider the monk, or the stenographer, or telegraph operator. These people created and transmitted messages in ways that seem crude to us today. In those cases, the need for greater technology pushed the creation of tools. But today, the technical landscape has changed so quickly that our push for innovation today is based on speculation, not need. The problem is that we are looking in all the wrong places. The really good solutions are elegant and simply and quite often are also stumbled upon because someone is trying to use one tool for a new purpose. Rather than relying on an expert class of thinkers, we need to simply try to solve problems.
I can’t say if the way that I do things will take off, or is best, or is even particularly good. For the most part, it doesn’t really matter. The system is good enough for me and any message that I would have written will be readable and verifiable as long as the very popular alt-coin that I use (Dogecoin) is around. I can’t say the same for a private blockchain solution. The messages that I send can be transmitted from any sort of wallet account, now I just need people to transmit the messages back to me, but that might not be so hard to do, as long as I focus on the general public instead of on experts. No need for complicated solutions, but rather very simple implementations, and a few small innovations.