“Disbelief: the feeling of not being able to believe that something is true or real; 2) the refusal to believe that something is true.”
After waiting for two years, plenty are looking at the current eth price action with skepticism, expecting temporary relief before more of the same.
Not least because the price of $230 looks like meh. At $300 it still would be meh, even at $600.
That’s because plenty are underwater. Down 90%, a 5% increase is hardly a party.
But there are the new ones for whom it’s not a 5% increase, but a doubling or even a trippling from $80.
It is probable those are so few right now that they might not exist at all, hence the disbelief.
This isn’t going up. For most, they’re just a bit less in the red. The spartans that is, the iron hands.
The same can’t quite be said for bitcoin. There, it never really felt like a bear. That’s shown by the hashrate only rising and rising.
In eth, the crunch has been very real. It is probable many miners there have gone bankrupt, many companies, even some devs.
2019 in particular has been probably the worst year for eth. Annus horribilis. From one perspective. 2020, we were going to call the awakening, but never got around to that editorial.
Anger is an evolutionary response to events that make one think might require a fight. To avoid the fight, one makes others know they are ready to fight through the expression of anger, and thus so hopefully avoid a physical fight.
2019 was a very angry year, within this space and outside it. It appears where this space is concerned it has led to the desired outcome, while outside it, maybe there’s too much deafness still.
From the Ashes, a New Jerusalem
As the one beaten most and still standing, ethereum perhaps will come out of this as the strongest.
It is the only one that fully has the chance of addressing scalability. For many reasons, and we will state some of them, but the main one is perhaps because it is the only one out of the top coins to have the right alignment between the interests of devs and that of the protocol.
As the above cited example shows in regards to some devs being fired, when eth suffers, ethereum devs suffer too because their income comes from eth.
In bitcoin, the for profit Blockstream is not necessarily aligned to the interests of the bitcoin blockchain. Blockstream instead gets its income from Liquid, a consortium chain run by Blockstream which charges participants hundreds of thousands with it unclear how much they may have charged Tron, if anything, for the “privilege” of turning it into some Liquid token.
In BCH, there’s a split between the two main clients, tangentially showing perhaps this multi-clients idea isn’t a really good one because it seems client teams always appear to fall into competition instead of cooperation.
One client team in BCH doesn’t really have coding skills and their funding is seemingly in bitcoin. The other does have coding skills, but no funding with the ecosystem there seemingly unable to solve this money problem.
Ripple also relies on XRP for its income, but it’s a for profit company with VCs. Their interest is more income for Ripple, which often coincides with XRP’s interests, but not always.
In ethereum, EF is a non profit. Its income comes from eth, and its expenses are for eth development. It is also often the richest, but that varies with price varience.
Ethereum developers therefore are incentivized to make the ethereum blockchain as good as possible, rather than some “side” chain or some company profits.
There’s also the partnership of sorts in addition forged ad initium between Vitalik Buterin and Jo Lubin. You thus have EF focused fully on the protocol, while ConsenSys is more dapps and enterprise blockchains or services.
The two are complementary because scalability has many components. There’s the new ZK tech, which is super cool. There’s the base chain parallelization of sorts through sharding. And then there’s the side-chains or private chains.
With the potential acquisition of Quorum, ConsenSys might focus on the latter with rumors months ago that they wanted some sort of enterprise client.
The holy grail there would be connecting such clients or chains to the main chain like the intranet to internet.
In bitcoin, they gave up on that perhaps because of this misalignment of incentives. In eth, it is probably a key component of the new world.
The 80s Moment
For us, the most inspiring speech of the past half a century or more is that given by Steve Jobs in 1984 when he went through a brief history of the computer revolution.
Their 50s, for this space would probably be the 90s when the first attempts at digital cash were made. Their 60s, our 2000s when bitcoin was just about launched. Their 70s our 10s when bitcoin did almost die in 2012 and obviously when eth was launched in 2016. Thus, presumably, their 80s our 20s.
In the 80s there was considerable excitement, but among geeks. The digital revolution had just began, but you needed cables and all sorts of nonsense to take part. 64kb in addition was enough for everyone. Now they speak of one terabyte.
Jobs, the adopted orphan, would go around the world preaching this new gospel, this new internet, which plenty thought was nonsense.
Now his company alone is more than half the market cap of the entire German stock market.
It took decades to get there, with a good question being whether innovation cycles are becoming shorter or whether man hasn’t quite evolved that much yet.
We suspect the latter, realistically, where it concerns real breakthrough innovations. Not least because if we had to peak, it is probable grandmas won’t quite use crypto stuff this decade like they use email for example, and maybe not even next decade, but by 2040s, probably.
In the meantime you’d expect gradual growth at the speed of information absorption and skill acquisition.
Hence the big question: which chain will grandma use in 2040 and will it be one chain?
The answer to the latter is probably easier, there will probably be at least two chains in an 80/20 market share but more likely three or maybe even more.
So a better question is which chain is likely to be used by most grandmas in 2040?
To answer it you have to first ask why would she use it, and the answer presumably is for the same reason she uses a bank, or because her self driving car uses it to automate payments, or maybe on internet functions, or maybe she hasn’t retired yet so her job uses it somehow.
Thus this chain definitely needs dapps, definitely needs scale, obviously it has to be decentralized in that misbehavior is not possible. And it needs to have the quality of being integrated in existing functions.
You can probably guess what our answer is as things stand, and while some claim some other blockchain could take ethereum – including govchains – they’d need a breakthrough which ethereum can’t incorporate.
Eth as you know was first meant for bitcoin but there they didn’t want it, so bitcoin probably can’t incorporate smart contracts probably during this whole decade.
It’s a more simple chain and that can have its uses and some grandmas might even use it in 2040, but it isn’t easy to see what breakthrough there can be that eth can’t incorporate considering it is Turing complete.
This is a network afterall that is in the process of completely disregarding one chain so as to have a parallelized environment to accommodate more capacity. So realistically some other chain can overtake it as much as they could overtake Apple.
Where govcoins are concerned, it’s just bureaucratic nonsense rhetoric by old men who have no clue what they’re talking about.
There could be gov tokens, however, or bonds and so on, and for the market to trust them they’ll have to do it in a way whereby all can see the rules and all can be sure those rules can’t be changed except as specified by the rules.
In other words, they’ll have to do it on ethereum or they’ll run into the same problems as Petro which no one trusts because no one trusts the NEM blockchain they’ve chosen.
So whether it’s eth season now or not is probably less relevant than whether it’s eth season for the next two decades. That’s the bet for those that really matter: the devs, the service providers, and for what maybe can generally be called as the doers, the thinkers, and yes, the idiots too.
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