Blockchain – the future of software

Welcome to this talk, my name is Bjørn and friends call me Mr. Bitcoin Norway. My background is in IT for financial environments, like IT Technician at Orkla Securities /Orkla Finance, Head of IT at Danske Securities, Head of IT and Security at Bank2 in Stockholm and IT Operations manager at Infront. Now my focus is at Acando as Project manager for several Blockchain projects.

Today I will be talking about how the generations have changed, and why bitcoin and blockchain is changing the dynamics of stability. At the end of this talk I will conclude with some predictions for the future. We will have time for some Q and A at the end so please hold your questions.

If a person held a public talk about financial matters 10 years ago, one would probably have to pay people to show up. Like all talks on bitcoin and Blockchain related matters these days, I as well would like to know who I am talking to by conducting a survey:

  1. How many in this room are born before 1963 or consider themselves a part of the Baby boom generation? How many in the baby boom generation have bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies?
  2. How many in this room are born after 1962 to 1980 or consider themselves a part of the Generation X? How many of you have bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies?
  3. How many in this room are born after 1980 to 1998 or consider themselves as a part of the millennial generation? How many of you have bitcoins or other cryptocurrencies, exuding OneCoin and PayCoin or other centralized cryptocurrencies!
  4. If you born after 1998 please stand up as the rest of us give you an applaud. You’re in a situation that is critical. And the rest of us need you to understand the history that took us to where we are today. Do you all have bitcoin? Generation Z, Post-Millennials. If not come and see me after the talk so I can help you setup a wallet and transfer a small amount of bitcoin to you.

To set the right mood I would like to show you some shot clips.

  • Bitcoin the end of money as we know it
  • Banking on bitcoin
  • The rise and rise of Bitcoin
  • The Generations

Baby Boomers born before 1963

  1. Best known as the TV and hippie generation
  2. One income family was the norm, where a woman could work but usually housewife was the most preferred title.
  3. Wasteful generation having more and access thru supplychains and distribution networks.
  4. Challenging authority‘s power, but ignoring the fails of the authority, as we consider that we are all humans and humans make mistakes.

Some years ago I read a book by Ayn Rand (Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal). After reading this book I was surprised to learn that Allen Greenspan, who was the Chairman of the Federal Reserve under the presidency of Reagan, Bush Sr., Clinton and George W. Bush in 2006, related to this book as his bible. Remember the Financial collapse in 2008 – I believe Greenspan either saw it was coming and/or had nothing to do with it because of the influential words in this book.

One of the common themes in this book was that any government involvement in a capitalist system will ultimately lead to collapse.

Capitalism should be the definition of a free market eg. if you make something valuable fore others you should be rewarded. The basis for this is IOYs (which means in most cases money), Supply and Demand to regulate value, what we call «Dollar Vote» to ensure quality of service.

Generation X born after 1963 to 1980

  1. Best known as the computer software generation
  2. Two income family and women join the workforce at the same level as men, however it is the earlier generations that have overseen the workforce so salaries have been biased.
  3. Wasteful generation, which focuses on being the first on new gadgets and proud in wearing the title early adapters in the big consumption addiction economy.
  4. Authority is becoming a gray area where we react to fails by authority and keep them accountable. At the same time actively seeking out ways around authority.

When I went to high school a teacher told me to: «Get use to change». I always found this phrase fascinating because it is an oxymoron. ‘Get used to’ implies stability and ‘change’ implies to unstable.

In the late 1990’s the Internet grew and became a larger part of our life. Most of us remember the release of Windows 95. It was a milestone in Operating systems but it was probably the x factor in how the Internet became wide spread. The internet started out as «Arpa», which was built to monitor and track air born objects over the north pole. In other words, a highly sophisticated missile detection system.

For those of you that where on the internet at that time might remember Netscape and WebCrawler which was what was available. Then came Microsoft Internet Explorer and Apple Safari with the search engine Yahoo that became dominant, as they considered them self the authority. But then something very interesting happened. The users started to decide for themselves and the power of a free market arose. Now Chrome and Opera and many others have design flexible solutions and Google shares their market insights on Google trends, thus becoming the most popular web search engine. This solution is empowering the users need for control.

Millennials, Generation Now, Generation Y, Peter Pan Generation born after 1980 to 1998

  1. Best known as the Internet, apps and device generation.
  2. Striving to fight the biased salaries the women have in this generation, not only taken to the workforce but more often than earlier becoming an entrepreneur to combat the salary biased for earlier generations. Men often have two or more income streams.
  3. Global clean up focus, still a bit wasteful as a part of the consumption addiction but with a twist on the back office. Recycling and caring about waste management.
  4. The concept of Authority is failing stability all together demanding alternatives to a flawless system.

Stability is changing hands and it might be a rough ride. Authority in the hierarchical systems has up until this point in history overseen stability. But it is now changing to Autonomism. Letting math and the collective democracy of the people decide in a flat decentralized structure how to achieve stability. This is a far cry for Anarchy or liberalism and may even be categorized as a form of Conservatism.

The highly sophisticated missile detection system, that now also holds over 2 million videos with Cats with an average of 12,000 views each, has become somewhat of a society or even multiple societies. The new generation now has, in lack of better words «two lives». One physical and one equally important digital life. A digital life where we have emotional bonds. Even jobs exist that do not affect the physical world and that has a tremendous market for buying and selling digital goods and services. Now we are all experiencing a Paradigm shift.

Bitcoin with its blockchain has many very interesting features. The software is open source. The code can be verified by anyone. And anyone can propose new ideas by submitting Bitcoin Improvements proposals even if they are not developers. However, it helps if you are a developer because than you can outline how the code might look like and more people will might support your submission.

This all accumulates to several software. In the Bitcoin ecosystem, today there are mainly 4 competitors. Bitcoin Core has roughly 87% support so it is the reference client. Competing software like Bitcoin Unlimited (7,2%), Bitcoin Classic (2,5%), and Bitcoin XT (2%). They all must be backwards compatible to the reference client but have new features that will be executed if or once the software is operational.

There are some more complex issues in how a new software gets to be the reference client but for this audience: for the new software features to be operational, it requires a 75% of the user’s upgrade + 2 week Grace period. This is the democratic system of Bitcoin works without authority on a flat non-hierarchical structure.

Most systems today are closed behind firewalls, and hackers are always on the hunt for weaknesses or ways in. Software companies even write long license agreements outlining that their software is not safe if kept open, and require the users to supply their computers and networks with the appropriate security features.

Bitcoin is not like this. It is completely open and hackers have been trying their best every day for several years to break the code somehow and find vulnerabilities. But because of the open source design and hundreds verifying the code, the bitcoin blockchain has become the anti-fragile standard evolving with every attack.

The concept of Anti-fragile

  1. Fragile – glass is imminent to be broken.
  2. Robust – built tough but for its purpose (GoPro Camera).
  3. Anti-fragile – please abuse me, try-to-brake-me attitude, like our immune system that gets stronger when it gets attached.

In Andreas Antonopoulos words ‘Bitcoin has the resilience that can be compared to New Your City Sewer rat’. Which is stability.

What about bitcoin in the generation Now? Legacy’s systems will not do. This is Generation Now, and everything needs to be on the Internet or in a app. Even money. Banking hours??? Did you know that IKEA in Norway is the only country in the world which is closed on Sundays?

At first sight, an average of 10 minutes’ settlement on bitcoin seems like an eternity but bitcoins are instant (minus network latency /milliseconds) however, old technology based Push/Pull are maybe on a check 1 min intervals verify, just is not fast enough.

Interestingly, lets look at supply and demand, well if you «Want» to by bitcoin the price tends to drop, but if you «Need» to buy bitcoin the price will rise.

In the last week Google trend results for the word «Bitcoin» show:

1. Nigeria

2. Ghana

3. Southern Africa

4. Venezuela

5. Austria

6. Slovenia

7. Colombia

8. Malaysia

9. Singapore

10. Bolivia

Sounds like a whole lot of need to me.

Post-Millennials, Generation Z, born after 1998

1. Maybe will be known for decentralization or IoT / IoM /Internet of Trust.

2. Project / freelance with multiple streams of income. Non-or better organized traditional workplaces.

3. Super efficient globally focus and hopefully breaking the addiction to consumption and focusing on circular economy.

4. Stability derived from autonomy


Let me touch on Lightning Network …

My brother Martin wanted to get to Oslo for Asker one evening. A unknown person had already attracted a cab and was headed in the same direction. Martin asked if they could share and he was compliant. When they came to Solli Plass the unknown got off and gave Marin 800 NOK for the ride. Martin continued to Vulkan at Fredensborg and settled the bill with the cabdriver. So what really happened here? The answer is Lightning Network.

The unknown person set up a payment channel to the cabdriver in the time frame of the cab ride: I promise to pay the desired amount when I arrive at my destination. However, that payment channel was canceled and Martin started a new payment channel when the unknown person left the cab at Solli Plass and decided to pay Martin instead of the cabdriver.

Now imagening this taking place on the Internet with initially one payment channel between two parties. If the payment channel has a long time before settlement new participants can jump in and out of this payment channel from both sides, depending if they are in debt or if they will be in credit. Borrowing or crediting the payment channel for instant transactions.

Global Instant Transactions with instant Settlement!!! The holy grail of banking.

Why do you get paid once a month? And why do you pay your bills once a month? Because that is the way the system is built. But what happens if we change the fundamentals of the system? What if you get paid once a week, or once a day, or once a minute, or even a second? The phrase «Cash flow» and «time is Money» takes on a whole new meaning. And what about your bills. In stead of paying electricity once a month. How about paying every second for light, heat, transportation? You would instantly know if you need to find more work. The question boils down to stability.

My Prediction

The circular economy: we will seek stability for all, moving away from consumption focus to sustainability.

As the new generation evolves the internet software. I believe software will become more and more open source, and we will be putting value on resilience, anti-fragileness, and the ability to evolve for every discovered vulnerability and by that, creating stability.

Software development must become a standard at schools in as early grades as possible. No matter what your job in the future will be, coding and/or the ability to understand software code will become a necessity to protect yourself, your family and your occupation.

We are already seeing that most traditional businesses are evolving to become tech companies with fewer full time employees, and this trend will continue.

No software will ever be completed in the traditional sense, but we will see continual evolution until a new service revolutionizes that function or industry.

The increase of project /freelance based work will cause a new technology to arise, one based on reputation. This will cause the biased of gender and other physical world differences to be replaced by the IoR – Internet of Reputation.

The stream money. Payment will be based on user of services.

Thank you!

Bjørn Bjercke

This talk was held at The Kasbah Hub – January 19, 2017