Nowadays, the simplest things took the shape of a computer already: e-books, music, houses, cooking, medicine, interactive (real graphics) video games, virtual friends, even dating and online tourism. Nevertheless, there’s still something regarding our daily life that had skirted the grasp of super technology for a long time: currency.
Satoshi Nakamoto opened the doors to the cryptocurrency world in 2009 with Bitcoin, a crypto coin that captured significant investors and media attention in April 2013 when it peaked at a record of $266 per bitcoin sporting a market value of over $2 billion. I’m pretty sure Bitcoin is a name everyone is related to in one way or another. But do we really know what cryptocurrency is? Nakamoto described it as an electronic payment system based on cryptographic proof instead of trust, allowing any two willing parties to transact directly with each other without the need of a trusted third. Indeed, cryptocurrency is a purely peer-to-peer network version of electronic cash that would allow online payments to be sent directly from one party to another. And since its decentralized, transactions reach their aim without going through a financial institution or third party.
And What is Blockchain? Blockchain is the technology behind Crypto functioning: a continuously growing list of records called blocks that are linked and secured using cryptography. The blockchain provides validation for crypto coins; it timestamps transactions by hashing them into an ongoing chain of hash-based proof-of-work (a system that runs difficult hashing algorithms to validate electronic transactions), forming a record that cannot be changed without redoing the proof-of-work. This process by which transactions are verified and added to the public ledger is where miners take part, miners use their computer’s power to carry out mining processes that involve compilation of recent transactions into blocks by finding the solution of a computationally difficult puzzle.
But here is the big question: Will cryptocurrency become an imminent part of our future? We can say that in less than 10 years, Blockchain and cryptocurrency made the leap from being only an academic concept to a (virtual) reality, going from fringe technologies to conversation topics among the greatest personalities and institutions. Beyond the fluctuating price of Bitcoin or any other crypto coin like Ether, Litecoin or Webchain, a more concrete indicator of legitimacy and general acceptance is how seriously the subject is being taken at higher-education institutions like The New York University, Stanford University, and MIT. Now they all offer at least one course or program in the realm of blockchain or cryptocurrency.
According to statistics shared by Coinbase, approximately 17% of computer science and engineering major students have already taken a course that focuses on cryptocurrency and blockchain, along with approximately 15% of economics and math major students and approximately 11% of business majors. There are also plenty of options for people not currently enrolled at a university to learn more about crypto. Online learning sites like Udemy, Coursera, edX, and Udacity offer hundreds of courses, including general lessons in foundational cryptography and more specialized classes on blockchain and cryptocurrency. Also the increasing number of jobs related to blockchain technology that grew by almost 200% in 2017, companies increasingly seeking experts to focus on this new technology showed in the increasing lists of employment-related search engines, for example indeed.com and other websites like cryptojobslist looking for lawyers, engineers, content writers, marketing managers, analysts, journalists and developers; an increasing number of merchants who accept cryptocurrencies as a valid transaction, recent news about the rise of cryptocurrency adoption in inflation-prone countries such as Venezuela and the growing number of things you can buy with crypto nowadays give us an idea of what may be ahead of us"... future of cryptocurrency lies in online platforms designed to make trade easier for both buyers and sellers, projects like MintMe"
Cryptocurrencies had already convinced a huge audience, of the multiple ways in which we can use the underlying blockchain functionality to improve current economic systems. But these possibilities are just the start of what blockchain functionality could offer. The principles behind blockchain have already been used in the music industry, crowdfunding and fundraising initiatives, political endeavors, and even to purchase unique digital pets. If applied to other systems it could be used for multiple life situations like ticketing, paying a bill, saving medical confidential information or anything that requires a unique identifier with a high amount of security and protection for both the user and the vendor.
Since it’s said that the future of cryptocurrency lies in online platforms designed to make trade easier for both buyers and sellers, projects like MintMe, based in these overflowing technologies are offering alternatives to the internauts, webmasters, entrepreneurs and investors that are looking for self-sustainability, real profitability, security and independence, offering a very new crowdfunding and exchange platform intervening then in the world of financial patronage, support and sponsorship for startups and creators around the globe allowing them to make money online. Then it’s clear that crypto has a significant role to play in the future of money because of its potential to transform business as we know it, from our interactions (social or economic), to the pace and direction of the commercial change.
As a new approach to economic sustainability and looking forward to the exponential growth in many other human life-matters, it would be better to ask ourselves: Are we those who wait to grab only the tail of the hunting prey? or Are we one of those inventors, creators, brave investors and entrepreneurs that never lose the chance to get a hold on a great opportunity? Because, who knows right? The first time we saw a phone we thought none would ever use it.
By Mary Schwartz