Future of the world monetary system is the topic of much discussion. Today, more and more corporations and governments are inclined to the idea of switching to cryptocurrency. Therefore, it began to appear more and more predictions about what will happen to the currency of the future. Let’s take a close look at potential scenarios of crypto space’s development.
Scenario: Bitcoin is a global currency. It is used as a means of payment everywhere, with the exception of situations such as buying drugs on the darknet and tax evasion – they use Zcash, which, of course, is prohibited, but these bans are bypassed. All retail transactions go through Lightning hubs, which are constantly monitored and verified by artificial intelligence.
People store their private keys, because after losing them, you can lose all your savings. The same keys are used to encrypt personal data, which can be used by decentralized applications running on the global Ethereum computer. This machine (thanks to the Plasma system) performs billions of operations in a millisecond. And, again, artificial intelligence is on guard, tracking signs of fraud.
Fiat currencies have died from hyperinflation, banks have not survived, nation states are on the last legs – the new generation prefers the complete absence of any citizenship. The world is mainly controlled by associations of bitcoin — seasteader — libertarians (seasteading is a movement that involves the creation of independent communities floating on the high seas outside any state jurisdiction) and hacker Ethereum communes, which call themselves phyles, as in The Diamond Age by Neil Stevenson, — only now it will be The Age of Crypt.
The probability of such a scenario: almost zero for many reasons. The vast majority of people do not want to keep secret keys, and if this is not done, cryptocurrency is not much different from a bank account, and if it differs in anything (for example, the irrevocability of a transaction), it’s not for the better. Credit and cryptocurrencies are poorly compatible. Most people want their government to be strong, and a strong government wants to control their currency, which means that most people like fiat money. Because deflation is really bad. And the like.
crypto wall street
Scenario: Ordinary people do not use cryptocurrencies, but everything is tied to them in the financial world. All shares and bonds are issued on the Ethereum blockchain, and any holder of a special token confirming the identity and status of the investor can trade any shares and bonds in any market in any country in the world in almost real time without asking anyone for permission. Trading mainly takes place through fully decentralized exchanges, although centralized markets still hold positions in some places. However, few people trade on their own – most have trading assistants with artificial intelligence.
Bitcoin is a global settlement and reserve currency; no one is any longer interested in gold. You can pay by a dollar card, but the amount will be immediately transferred to bitcoins, the right amount of Satoshi will be sent to the card issuer and the intermediary bank within the same transaction, after which the balance will be converted back and sent to the seller of the goods. Thanks to the Lightning system, the fee for this operation is so small, and the gain in volumes is so great that it is cheaper than other options. Ordinary people have not learned what Lightning is, but payment channels between banks, both domestically and internationally, allow hundreds of millions of dollars a day to go through themselves.
The probability of such a scenario: almost zero. The irrevocability of cryptocurrency transactions and the inconvenience of granting loans in cryptocurrency are sufficient reasons. Perhaps we are mistaken. Nevertheless, here we see the application of at least some of the advantages of cryptocurrency — why to support thousands and thousands of independent databases, if you can get by …, say, one.
Scenario: In finance, cryptocurrencies did not particularly take root — this is just one of the asset classes and a countercultural phenomenon. But the tokenized protocols used by decentralized applications have conquered the Internet. Facebook, Twitter, and gradually Google, are being replaced by huge peer-to-peer networks in which calculations and data are coordinated and optimized in real time using tokens controlled by artificial intelligence. The rules of these systems are determined by frequent voting, which are also tokenized.
User personal data are packed in ‘containers’ scattered over the Internet and protected by a private key, and they can be partially accessible to certain services, but to whom and when – it is up to you or your authorized representatives to decide. When you give access to your personal data, you get a reward that you can then spend on something. Each person has a portfolio with hundreds or thousands of different tokens, and artificial intelligence trades them all the time, optimizing this portfolio for your lifestyle.
Similar tokenized structures begin to be formed offline, in developing equipment, in designing cities, in the activities of great art groups. The token economy is regulating human behavior on a large scale.
The probability of such a scenario: not too high. Yes, the picture is inspiring in its own way, but most people need centralized solutions that give them the opportunity to complain somewhere. They want to be able to introduce rules themselves and ensure their implementation without a vote on each issue in each network they are connected to.
Distributed applications are inherently more complex, fragile, and slower to develop than their centralized counterparts. Rewards to decentralized users are very small – e.g. on Facebook, it can be $ 10 per quarter per user, which does not pay off all the trouble with decentralization. Centralized solutions have a number of advantages: they benefit from economies of scale, specialized data centers are more efficient than personal computers, and databases are much faster than any blockchain. And no one wants to track a portfolio of hundreds of different types of tokens, even with the help of an intelligent assistant.