Improving The Blockchain Experience – Blockgenic – Medium
Improving The Blockchain Experience
“Blockchains? Isn’t that what the Bitcoins use?” Most people aren’t very familiar with blockchain technology, and while most have heard about the magic internet money called Bitcoin, they don’t have the slightest clue as to how it works. Is the technology too complex for the general public to understand, or have developers been explaining the concept poorly?
It all started with Bitcoin in 2009, the first blockchain. Although the technology may have been groundbreaking and complex for it’s time, it’s rather simple compared to some modern-day blockchains.
The promise of Bitcoin was pretty big, a fast, trustless, decentralized network, allowing everyone to safely and anonimously send Bitcoin to anyone anywhere in the world, regardless of where they live. A network faster and safer than any centralized network.
Times change, though. At the time of writing this article, Coinmarketcap lists 1722 different cryptocurrencies, with thousands more unlisted cryptocurrencies. All of these cryptocurrencies are unique in their own way and have their own purposes. Most of these cryptocurrencies have only one thing in common, the usage of blockchain technology.
This growth is amazing, and truly shows how much attention cryptocurrencies have been getting. But this also means that there’s thousands of different cryptocurrencies, working in thousands of different ways, using thousands of different terms, which can make things very confusing for those who have not spent their time looking into all of these cryptocurrencies.
One example of these differences are the different security protocols used: Proof-of-Work, Proof-of-Stake, Delegated-Proof-of-Stake, Proof-of-Activity and Proof-of-Storage, just to name a few. Another example is how to use the cryptocurrency and it’s wallet/account. Sometimes one only needs their private key to access their wallet, sometimes only a password, whereas other cryptocurrencies require one to create an account with various permissions, which has often proven to be difficult and confusing.
The combination of these differences has lead to many people staying away from cryptocurrencies, but it has also lead to people buying cryptocurrencies without even the faintest inkling as to how they work, often resulting in the loss of tokens.
Simplification and generalisation
Making cryptocurrencies easy to understand and use has always been a hard task, as many people simply won’t put in the time to do proper research. But people don’t know exactly how online banking works either, yet most people are still able to transfer money to another person. Could a simple user interface and a standard way to do certain things be the commodities that almost all cryptocurrencies are currently lacking?
While some cryptocurrencies are much easier to understand than others, cryptocurrencies in general are complex and diverse. The research one has to do to even slightly understand cryptocurrencies is way too high currently, and even if someone understands the basics of cryptocurrencies, they will likely end up buying/using a cryptocurrency with a completely different, and often more complex, approach to things. All of this basically screams simplification and generalisation, make things easier to understand and create easy-to-use user interfaces, as those are often not available.
The wildly varying terms for similar things also don’t help. Everyone knows what a bank account is, and that you can pay for items with the money on your bank account using a debit card, which requires you to enter a pin number. This is the same for every bank. The generalisation of cryptocurrency related terms would help people understand cryptocurrencies better, and would help them seeing the differences and similarities between certain cryptocurrencies.
Do not put your money where your knowledge is not
These changes will not happen overnight, though. However, they are coming and will change the way we are currently using and interacting with cryptocurrencies. And although cryptocurrencies might be complicated, and sometimes, really hard to wrap your head around, if you don’t understand it, why invest money into it?