June 12, 2018 432By Nathan Bentley
“Let’s imagine an alien invasion. They get so excited about the idea of an independent digital mankind-currency that they copy its initial code, establish a superfast communication channel between Earth and their planet and fly away. “Alien scientists immediately grasp the idea. They synchronize with the Earth network, create and put their mining equipment into production.”Moreover:
”Little by little, aliens start proposing some quite intelligent network updates that can significantly improve the capacity, security and privacy of Bitcoin. Initially, Earth scientists are able to understand the alien mathematics and prove its trustability. However, each new update comes hundreds, later thousands of times more advanced than the previous one and, very quickly, even the most brainy Earth mathematician can no more understand what lies behind the improvements.”What is being said within this metaphor is that as it stands, the essence of Bitcoin is that at the moment, masses of people are investing in a product that only few people have the skills and knowledge to intervene with and change. By investing in Bitcoin or by simply using Bitcoin within a transaction, you are issuing a huge element of trust out to those people, trusting in the fact that they will not use their skills and expertise to steal from you, or bring down the network altogether. Now of course, decentralisation makes this a little more tricky however, trust is still a bit part of the Bitcoin network and moreover, still a big part of the majority of cryptocurrencies. I think in this, Kravchenko’s metaphor of the aliens is an incredible way of describing what is a bit of a paradox, given that Bitcoin runs on a trustless network, in essence, you don’t need to trust anyone to see your transactions though. The reality of it is though, by interacting with Bitcoin, you are putting an awful lot of trust, within the hands of a few very clever people. Please go on and read the piece by Kravchenko and Cryptovest, it’s informative and provides a really cool and novel perspective to how Bitcoin functions on a cultural level.