Because of our fascination with Blockchain, we have forgotten who we are doing it for.
The Blockchain journey so far
It seems like a lifetime since the Bitcoin has appeared in 2009. A lot has happened since then. At that time, there was one of the greatest global financial crises in human history, followed by a nearly 6-year debt crisis in the EU. The world has seen the rise and fall of illegitimate states in the Arabic world and Europe was (and still is) occupied with issues like the Brexit and the Catalonian revolt. In the east, Japan has suffered from Fukushima, while the US-Americans voted Trump into the presidency. And Germany still has Chancellor Merkel, some things seem to last.
The in 1977 started voyager probe has finally reached interstellar space in the year 2018 as the first man-made object in history. The world is always spinning, and progress is being made on all levels of humanity. In economics, politics, culture, technologies and even in religion can be observed some careful steps into progression.
In all this time, the Bitcoin prepared the way for various projects labeled as Blockchain, Hashgraph, Tangle or simply Ledger. In 2017 occurred the greatest hype for cryptocurrencies so far. Million of people invested in coins like Bitcoin, Ether and even Dogecoin (which comes without any purpose). Always in hope of continuing increases of value. And someday, early 2018 everything went south. Fictional value has been eradicated in a matter of a few months. The interest in the Blockchain technology was accordingly following the price of Bitcoin.
It’s 2019 and where are we with Blockchain? What has been achieved? How many lives have been improved thanks to Blockchain technology? Not too many. That is sure. We, that are all people in the Blockchain field, have simply forgotten what the goal is. Technology should serve the people, should increase life quality for the individuals. Instead, we are talking about the latest cryptography, the newest way to create the most complex smart contract and how we could improve existing protocols with Lightning, Shards, and Plasma.
Blockchain should be for the users
Well, don’t get me wrong. There is nothing false with that. However, I just can’t think of too many people out there that will care of Blockchain as long as it stays on that level of complexity. We must start to think about the user. The reason, why we do all the things we do in Blockchain. We need an ideological restart. And we must face one simple truth: the common people don’t give a **** about Lightning, nodes, gas fees or key-pairs. That is the mindset we should address with technological solutions.
The global adoption of the internet begun as it became as easy as connecting a modem with the phone-socket in the wall. Plug and play. The foundation of everything since then. To value hard- and software one question is enough: can it be used by plug and play? If not, throw it in the bin, it won’t reach the hearts of millions of people. Which brings me back to Blockchain. Is there one, a single, application in Blockchain that is plug and play? 10 years of progress, 10 years of development. And all we got is Coinbase. Plug the credit card in and play with your coins.
Recalibration of our mindset
We should start to put the Blockchain in the background. That’s the place for great databases. Safely guarded and out of the view of users. And then let’s start to develop applications which are actually usable without the tiniest blockchain knowledge. It has to be as simple as the program I just use for this article. Start, create a new document and go.
To achieve that, businesses can use existing Blockchain infrastructures like Tangany, which is focused on the European market and regulation or similar providers. Alternatively, businesses should start to develop all the needed components themselves to get the Blockchain in the back. Either way, there is just one endgame for Blockchain. Put the user first (#userfirst) or stay irrelevant.