Author has started with a strong opinion on the changes which cryptocurrencies have made in recent years and which is true in conjunction with reality. With respect to the relative timeline of cryptocurrencies and their life lines they sure have been a game changer in a relatively short time and yet still growing at a never ending pace. As of writing this the Cryptocurrencies have a value of 1.3 trillion dollars in contrast to 90 trillion dollars Global market capitalization in 2019 and a lot of room for defi space to grow. So, change is inevitable and it is more real than ever.
Then the author took a good example of defi to make crypto and blockchain space as a great connection with real world finance. Uniswap is a cryptocurrency exchange which is built upon a set of rules also known as protocols. Now, the fun part as author explained that while flowing millions of value (in USD) it doesn’t employ even a single employee, because it is autonomous and combine that fact with “people who are using it govern those protocols” and now we have something which is called as DAO(Decentralised Autonomous Organisation) on Ethereum Chain. As of writing this there are many DAOs in Ethereum and also very niche DAOs too such as Stake DAO for Trading Purposes onChain.
So, what’s the benefit you asked, well there are many as also mentioned by the author such as, There is no used account for either party involved in exchange and there’s no governing body which can kick you off the service. Also there are no taxes etc. not yet that’s for sure. In short it’s a superpower against censorship and ensures privacy with a security better than most cloud services present today ;).
So leaving the realm of money, the author also explained a use case for an online coding school which will connect the current situation with the futuristic approach.
Consider this scenario for simplicity in a traditional setting you have to get some credentials then show it to the company requiring assistance and then complete the task and hopefully get rewarded, also it is a painfully slow process.(believe me it is)
Now consider this case
In this scenario the flow for getting things done will be much faster as credentials are onchain and requirements are met then only you can apply, saving time and making processes much more efficient and help people make granular choices also don’t worry about you reward it will be on chain in escrows(A contract which is specific to few conditions to give output e.g you complete the task you get the money, you don’t then company gets back money).
Similarly, the article also mentioned scenarios where amazon can be decentralised and as well as social media platforms(e.g Twitter) too (making it censorship proof and securing individuality from the organizations).
And it’s all real and happening right now.
For example the author wrote a scenario related to commerce in which the author is experienced and it is great. Here’s a super simple abstract graphical representation to help you understand.
So in short four parties are involved in traditional scenario
And now the main part, for a sale to happen only two parties are required, A Vendor and A Customer. Bank and Retailer are intermediaries and facilitators and function to provide identity verification, collection of deposit, dispute resolution, which are necessary for a sale but don’t have to be bundled together.
Now in the future (hopefully coming along) all these functions can be carried out on the network and the network can act as a decentralised intermediary by holding appropriate data and execution via smart contracts.
For the vendor verification process , we can have on-chain vendor verification authority which can do the same function as intermediary in a traditional setting for getting reward as a micro amount of each sale. And the same can be applied for product reviews, etc.
All of it can be done and people are putting their efforts to make this a reality.
Next, the author took an analogy for printers and how they got unbundled from publications and now-a-days purpose is limited to printing, and the same can happen for the banks of today. The author is optimistic about the adoption of DeFi and unbundling of banking which i also agree with as with the rapid technological advancements that day isn’t far away in future.
Now in the aftermath the author discusses the drawback for this evolution and what it will cost us. What concerns the author is related to addressing dispute resolution and how we look for third-parties to evaluate claims of wrongdoing and if necessary, forcibly rectify the situation.
Author explained that cryptocurrency is a bearer instrument and anyone who has access to your private keys can steal your crypto assets, and it could be anything valuable. Intermediaries such as coinbase which can take custody of your crypto wallet on behalf of you can help mitigate this risk. Also foundation devices such as Casa HODL can help in this situation. In short it lets you as a user to calibrate your risk vs. trustlessness tradeoff.
And all this competition in intermediaries has provided users with very efficient markets for services.
Also as an addition with upcoming projects such as Uniris which aims to bind your identity to your accounts will make it a more safer approach as a whole entry to the blockchain ecosystem.
And at last, the author is concerned about the destruction to the information media in general which can be copied and served without knowing since everyone on chain is anonymous, will make it a hiccup in adaptation.
To Address the above concern, there’s another project NuCypher which helps you take more control over you assets and also create policies upon whom to share the asset under concern on chain with decentralised nature.
As a final verdict the author has presented the most factual data with least buzzwords as promised and making it a great read providing valuable information in a simple way.