Why should everyone care about blockchain

AI, blockchain, deep learning, IoT- these words are more than exciting for someone involved in the world of technology.

But how about the ones who truly just don't care for tech?

For them, these words are often barely more than mumbo-jumbo, futuristic yadda.

No wonder- understanding what each of these technologies can do, and what is the potential behind them takes significant research, time and energy. I know that better than most- transitioning from a non-tech career I needed to pick up on these concepts on my own.

While I did it out of my own volition, I would not expect many people to do the same with their free time just for the sake of novelty.

Still, understanding technology becomes a must in our lives- as our days and technology are getting more and more intertwined.

We rely on our email to communicate in work, chat on Skype, keep up with friends or colleagues on social media, have a smart car, phone and TV. Getting familiar with technology does not just mean now having a bit of a hobby- it means getting to know the world around us.

Knowing technology also means being able to leverage opportunities and avoid threats in the digital world. For example, to learn all the capabilities your appliances can do can ease your life significantly. Being able to take photos, notes, measure your pulse, access your files even if you lose your device- these are just some of the very basic possibilities you have. Getting hacked, having your data stolen, or someone diving in your private information- these are real threats we should well be aware of.

However, it is not just technology which got more intricate in the last few years. Our whole world has elevated to a level of unknown complexity. We are ruled by centralized sources of immense power, who can shift our wants, needs, and trends. I am quite certain at this point Google or Facebook know more about me than I know about myself. Their access to information and power in the world is something we can barely comprehend.

It is not just them. The banking industry is ruled by the powerful few, and myriad of unseen middlemen and background players we do not even know about. Our dearly saved funds are at the mercy of an entity who is free to perform whatever they aim to do until they provide us with shamefully low interest, barely covering inflation. While trust in banking systems has been shaken since the 2008 financial crisis, they still form an integral part of our lives.

Everywhere we go we wind up in a convoluted mix of connections, interests and a few massive entities governing and defining the rules for an entire industry.

Throughout all this messy, complicated, confusing world- I firmly believe that we can do better.

We can untangle the ties of our world. We can be more efficient. We can distribute power more equally. We can have the luxury of transparency.

Blockchain technology, although still in its infancy is showing the most promising sign to break up the silos of our current world.

The distributed, secured and transparent database brings new potential. Together with smart contracts, cheaper transaction processing, and privacy-friendly algorithms- we could transact like never before.

Blockchain can introduce openness in our interactions and empower people to finally see clearly how transactions are truly performed. Blockchain raises hope to have a system which cannot be tricked, deleted or blackmailed. It can make transactions more efficient by excluding profit-thirsty middlemen and layers of wasteful processes.

Do not get me wrong- this will not happen tomorrow, and it will not happen by itself.

Blockchain technology has to develop greatly.

Firstly, the technology needs to improve to be able to handle efficiently many transactions, bring the security it promises while keeping the decentralization in mind. Forget about cryptocurrencies- the huge market volatility, bad press, and fame for making fast cash shadows the true potential of blockchain. Cryptocurrencies form the first use cases, and can develop further fast- they are like the Ford Model T growing to a Tesla.

Secondly, us people we need to develop- we need to switch mindsets. We need to embrace what a transparent technology can bring, and re-think how we want to handle transactions. We need to revisit our rooted concepts of what is and what is not possible in this world.

Lastly, blockchain needs support. It needs people who believe in it, the support for growing projects and visionary minds in the field.

Making blockchain a reality impacts us all.

It impacts the artist who had their music used without consent. It impacts the entrepreneur who is bound to pay outrageous amount of bank transaction fees. It is also important for the patient who is being rushed into the hospital and needs his medical records ASAP. It impacts the mom who wants to make sure the baby food is really where the label says its from.

You should care about blockchain to bring us all in a better future. A future where we can oversee clearly our transactions, rule our own information, and have more efficiency. Whether you are a stay-at-home mom, a mechanic, developer, artist, barkeeper or student- this technology can bring benefits to all of us.

In the end, you should care for blockchain, as the potential of a fair, decentralized, transparent future is too important not to care.

Barbora JuhaszovaComment