working on “blockchain is bad for this” arguments in under 500 characters

i work part-time for a cryptocoin startup so i want to be gentle about saying “your fundamental architecture is wrong”


still it’s jarring when folks treat this p2p ledger construct as a revolutionary wunderkind. it’s only revolutionary-seeming because it’s easy to monetize 🤷‍♀️

blockchain, a distributed ledger construct, is useful for:

- stuff that needs a ledger, like fintech
- literally nothing else

thanks for coming to my ted talk

you foolish legalist! governance cannot be enshrined, only practiced. your cleverness engenders brittle monuments.

@garbados Well. I have the same opinion that yours but I have talked with many people interested on the blockchain technology and it has some interesting points I didn't consider:
- It's good for traceability
- It's good for trust control

Aaand done.

@ekaitz_zarraga tell me more about the traceability use case, i'm curious 🤔

@garbados There are many contexts where certification companies sign the origin and the steps of a product. Pieces for planes are an example for this.

Those companies' job is just sign and certificate that stuff happened.
A blockchain can help make this process open, letting every step in the chain sign their own work in an independent way limiting the possibility for frauds.

Tuna is also an example hahaha
You can follow the tuna from the place it was fished (the boat itself!) to the shop.

@ekaitz_zarraga that’s interesting, and seems very appropriate 👍

@garbados yeah!
I recorded a conversation with a friend of mine that works in this research area and wanted to share it but the audio is shit. OOOOOOH

So I have to make more coffees like that and meet cool people I know and ensure that the audio is good.

@ekaitz_zarraga if you found it illuminating, i’d love to read a transcript!

@ekaitz_zarraga @garbados the problem with "trust control" is that the implementation needs to be solid

and how many solid blockchain implementations are there? Zcash? and?

@ekaitz_zarraga @hirojin @garbados
Whether you think BitCoin is stable depends on whether you're looking at the math or the culture. There's nothing wrong with the crypto, but I suspect proof of work will always produce turbulent valuations that leave an implementation in the control of a few stakeholders. That's not a meaningful change in trust unless you're a stakeholder in one of the 2 systems

@hirojin @ekaitz_zarraga microsoft is bullish on cryptocoin and even they’re like “proving correctness is a monumental task that virtually no one undertakes”

@thegibson @garbados

"I've got something that tracks changes in files in a tree structure with cryptographic hashes."

*money gets thrown at me*

*use git to implement it*


Let's be honest, ninety percent of tech startups are just impressive sounding fads to make investor's eyes pop. Block chain is a word that most people know, so you need to cram it in somewhere.


Exactly. The owners will have sold it to google before anyone realises that it's pretty shit.

@Melisandre @garbados also "Token Offerings" are basically a licence to print money then abandon the project, even if it fails the risk:reward ratio is pretty acceptable to most investors

@Melisandre @garbados and as long as the shareholders think it's great, google/etc. fulfills their obligations to them whether it makes money or not.

> and what about the shareholders? it has to make money somewhere right!?

well they make money by selling to other shareholders who *perceive* google to be making money, and they make money by selling to other shareholders... etc. etc.

once you get to the innermost circle of hell, it's really just a mystical closed-loop circlejerk from there.

@Melisandre @garbados There's a car dealer magnate in my town that sold most his dealerships to get into blockchain. He started a blockchain conference. Investors and startups around here see it as a solution in search of a problem.

@Melisandre @garbados i guess it sounds better than Merkle Tree or Distributed Hashtable or Eventually Consistent Distributed Data Structure or...?

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