Best Features of Bitcoin and Cryptocurrency [Andreas Antonopoulos] Bitcoin Will Hit $25,000 in 2019



and so we have the best technology which of course if you travel at all you know is not true and and if you travel what you discover very quickly is that in fact in many ways in American things do not progress as fast as they do in other places and I felt that very strongly you when I travel abroad with my Visa card so I have an American credit card and American credit cards don't have chips in them nope no chips no RFID no smart card chips no chip and pin none of that stuff is just the plain chunk of plastic and when I've traveled abroad Canada and recently here in Australia it's really funny because I'll give my card and they'll take it and they'll wave it over the machine like that's that's so cool but it's not gonna work no you have to you have to swipe it and and then I sign and then you send the telegram to the bank and they put the money on a steamship and they send it across you know it's 1800s technology it's really really cool and so our card technology is 10 years in the past and this really is interesting because credit cards as a whole are 1950s technology I don't know if you realize now the first credit card was I believe the diners club right and at the time it was essentially a form of traveler's checks just in plastic and they had a member number a four-digit member number they weren't very optimistic and and and you could have a plastic card that's at diners club on it and it had a four-digit number and then you could go places and you could say do you take Diners Club and people would say no because of course nobody took it and and it took quite a while before these things became popular because what was B what do you think people's reaction to that was well that's not real bunny that's not real money what are you doing with this plastic card that you're waving around I don't understand we won't we take cash here cash real money which is interesting because when cash was first introduced in paper form people said that's not real money we take silver here like real metal and I bet at some point somebody said well that's not real money we take feathers here so so money has context right it has historical context and it depends on the time you live in like for example here in 2014 or in the states where we live in 1980 in terms of payment technology the the payment you use has that context well here's the interesting thing the people who live are in this room today we're about a decade ahead of everybody else no doubt about it so the people here are now experiencing payment technology as it's going to be in a decade from now and I know this feeling because I felt it a few times in my life before I've been involved in technology if you haven't noticed I'm a geek I get excited about this stuff I've been involved in technology since I was ten years old I got my first computer at 10 years old blew my mind I spent months learning how to program and I had this feeling that this is going to be really important this is gonna change the world and then I got my first modem in 1986 it was the size of a shoebox and it costs if I remember correctly about $600 at the time to buy a modem and it did a blistering 300 bits per second amazing stuff so you could sit there and download the text message one character at a time as it scrolled across the screen and I thought it was the most amazing thing possible because I thought you know now I can communicate I can I would literally dial up overseas numbers and dial into bulletin board systems in Los Angeles and talk to Americans located in Greece with my dial-up modem you know for the first bill was hard my parents were not happy about that and and so you know that to me was a glimpse of the future and I had this vision that the people will be able to connect and communicate with other people using these modems and so I told everybody around me this amazing thing is happening I had this epiphany technological epiphany I told everybody around me modems are going to be amazing like everyone's gonna have one and they're all going to communicate with each other by sending messages through modems and everybody said that's ridiculous go do your homework because I'm a 16 so that it worked very well and so then I connect it to the Internet and the way I connected to the Internet is kind of quirky because I actually found the way to dial-up into the mainframe of a university computer where they had accounts without secure passwords and they just connected an internet connection to a system that had accounts for every member of faculty so this mainframe they just automatically created accounts so of course there was an account for the archaeology professor who didn't know there was a mainframe so we used his account and I got on the internet now this to us today doesn't sound incredible but I wasn't this is 1989 and I'm 17 and a half 17 going on 18 years old which getting on the internet when you're 17 in 1989 when there's no one on the Internet is just an academic network and getting to talk to other people overuse that newsgroups and then eventually sending emails with uucp store-and-forward and so I could tell my friends you know this email thing it's amazing it's really simple all you have to do is launch send mail I create a sub directory where you create your mailbox then you start up this mail command and then you type the commands in sequence into the terminal you open either Emacs or V and then you use V or Emacs the visual editor in order to edit and and then you hit send and then three days later it arrives on the other end of the world now if you ask me then well my mother ever used email I would have said no there there's no way in hell anybody in the mainstream is going to use this technology but my vision at the time was this is the greatest thing ever one day we'll all be sending emails and the people around me to whom I said this said of stomping and dress go do your homework you see a recurring theme here and I found myself going through these technology epiphanies I saw my first website and it was probably late 1990 one night in early 1992 I believe at the time using NCSA mosaic to connect to one of the two websites that existed at the time bob Beranek and Newman BBN websites in the states about a dozen students huddled over a workstation watching this thing spin until it popped up one page with text and it had a photo in the middle of the text as I this is the greatest thing ever one day people will go shopping using this system and people said oh stop it and rest go to your homework only this time at least I was in computer science I actually enjoyed doing my homework but anyway so these are a series of epiphanies technology epiphanies every time that have just captured my imagination I had one more with Linux and then things dried up for a while until Bitcoin and in 2011 I discovered Bitcoin for the first time and my initial reaction to Bitcoin was nerd money nobody's ever gonna use that and so I ignored it for another six months and then I heard about it again and I went out and I read the white paper by Satoshi Nakamoto and when I read that white paper it blew my mind I saw this and I said okay this isn't the currency it's a network it's a distributed system it's a trust model it's a decentralized ledger of ownership holy you could do incredible things with this and so I've now spent the last three here is going to everyone I know this stuff is amazing it's the most incredible thing since the last incredible thing I told you about several years ago when you told me to go through my homework and and you know still people look at me and they look at me funny right because I I keep getting excited over these really geeky and esoteric things and I think they're going to change the world well I'll just point out my track record so far the personal computer the modem the internet websites and Linux that's five out of five so when I say Bitcoin is going to be amazing pay attention I might be right this time too [Applause] what is it about these six technologies what is it about these six technologies that caught my imagination what is the common theme that connects the personal computer the modem the internet the website Linux and Bitcoin decentralization a system that empowers end users and is not controlled by a central authority a system that allows anyone to play around with technology and innovate all of these systems had that same characteristic they opened up for me as a young kid a world of opportunity far beyond what I could access in my life far beyond my station in life far beyond my surroundings so if you're a kid living in Greece in a middle-class family in 1989 you know the Internet is just amazing right so Bitcoin now brings that possibility and it attaches it to one of the most important powers we have in society money which is arguably one of the oldest technologies in the world money hasn't just existed since were printed money has existed in some form or another since human beings started using language and the reason for that is because money is language money has existed in various forms not for thousands of years but for hundreds of thousands of years potentially millions of years and so I like to think that the first wheel was sold for money now it may have been feathers may have been beads it may have been a line on a stick or not on a piece of rope we've seen all of those things in fact be used as money because money happens as a cultural connection between people it's a language that people use to express value to each other and the fascinating thing is that money happens even when there's no medium to attach money so if you've ever interacted with kindergarteners what you'll notice is that they start creating money of their own and they'll start trading things though amass cubes and trade those I'll give you one of my lettered cubes if you give me one of your little cars and or maybe you can have two cubes for one car and and people do this spontaneously in fact it's not just people who do this scientists have seen this type of behavior in many different primate species very effectively in chimpanzees and orangutans and in fact they can very quickly teach money to primates and guess what happens when you teach money to primates yep they first figure out you can buy a banana and then they figure out they can sell sex for it in exchange for bananas and so even when you teach them that a simple token represents something of value and they start trading these tokens from bananas very very quickly they start trading them for other things too but money is a form of expression and it happens in primates it happens in human beings and at some point in our history we took that form of expression and we created a monopoly a monopoly that said that only sovereigns could create money and this you understand was for our own good as most government actions are and unfortunately the problem is that the power of money is an immense power and when sovereigns took over the power of money they use that and they use it primarily to distort market forces and to very very slowly and discretely steal money from their population and I'm not talking about taxes although some people in this audience would probably call taxes a form of theft too but I'm talking about inflation so if you people generally don't understand how inflation works if they did they'd be horrified because then they would realize that they're being robbed on a daily basis I think it was Ford who said that if if the common people ever understand how central banking works they'll be a revolution it is probably right most people really don't understand how money works the idea that an organization in the US it's even more bizarre the Federal Reserve Bank is not a government body who knew that did you know that it's a private company it's a private company made up of member banks and they create money out of nothing and then they use that money to buy Treasury bills and put the government into debt against the money that they give their own member banks now if you try to explain this to a five-year-old they will very quickly point out that if you give someone the ability to make money they're going to rob you blind because a five-year-old will get that right you have to be an adult to miss that point you have to be a very very serious adult who says no the Federal Reserve Bank offers stability for our currency by carefully manipulating interest exchange rates on overnight banking loans between banks thereby establishing a smooth business cycle between boom and bust and allowing for the allocation of capital efficiently in the markets which is all a very long way of saying they're robbing you blind now if you then try to explain to the average person what 2% inflation is there's two ways to explain it you can say well 2% inflation means that every year your money reduces an actual purchasing value by 2% and they'll try to do the math in their head and if they're like me they'll fail they'll pull out a calculator and try to do it again probably fail again because compound interest is kind of tricky like that or there's a simple way to do it in 36 years everything is twice as expensive what you mean I save for 36 years and then I've got $100,000 in the bank but it's only worth 50 in today's money those guys are robbing us blind but most people really don't think about money money is something that pervades our life but most people don't think about it because we don't really understand it and I challenge you to try to explain money to a five-year-old and you will very quickly find out that they start asking questions to which you don't have the answers most people don't have the answers to these questions and the reason they don't have the answers to these questions because most people don't understand money money while it is used by all of us is something almost mystical in nature why does a piece of cotton that is well let's say it's 60% cotton 20% bacteria and 20% cocaine to be more accurate a piece of cotton printed with green ink why does that have value and you have that discussion with people around you and see what they answer some people are going to give you this line well you see for every dollar out there in circulation there's a certain amount of gold in the vault at Fort Knox I have news for you there is no gold right that system of money was abolished in the Bretton Woods treaty in 1936 or 3346 so that system doesn't exist why does a piece of paper or in your case a piece of indestructible plastic with a transparent window in it very thin cool what why does a piece of plastic like that have value because men with guns say it does well I haven't met any of those men and they haven't pointed any guns at me and yes I still believe it has value why does it have value and and we really can't struggle to answer this question but if a five-year-old asks you well why is this valuable and why can't I just have more and and can we just give everyone more so that everyone's happier then you have to start talking about inflation you end up right back where you started the reason money has value is because other people accepts that it has value that's really the basis of it value and money is an illusion it's a shared hallucination we are all sharing the hallucination that these pieces of plastic have value they don't have value right we assign value to them because we are willing to exchange them for products and services under the assumption that two days from now when we go to exchange them again for products and services people will actually give us products and services and as long as that's true its money does that make sense so people tell me all day long the Bitcoin isn't really money for a variety of reasons it's not money because it has no central bank assigning it value well no central bank really assigns value to any money but okay it's not money because it's not recognized by government because it's not legal tender because I can't use it at my local grocery store well guess what I can use it to buy products and services in fact I've been living off Bitcoin now for just over a year and a half almost all of my income is in Bitcoin and some of my expenses are in Bitcoin many of them are in dollars and one of the reasons I know bitcoin is money is because I give it to other people and they give me dollars for it and that's a pretty good deal there's another interesting thing that happens when you have this discussion which people say well yeah but you can buy drugs with Bitcoin I believe the American expression is no Sherlock it works here good of course you can buy trucks with Bitcoin here's the opposite question show me one currency you can't buy drugs with and I'll show you something that isn't a currency drugs are the second most traded commodity in the world after food right depends on your definition recreational narcotics I count caffeine and beer to the fact that caffeine was illegal for 400 years and banned by the authorities in the Netherlands because it would drive the young people insane and create horrible addiction which gave you the shakes and headaches if you tried to break it and so they banned it under penalty of death for almost 400 years caffeine try to take my caffeine away I'm going to have the shakes drugs are the second most traded commodity in the world and if you couldn't buy them with Bitcoin arguably Bitcoin wouldn't be money and I don't think that's a really relevant or interesting discussion but the media focuses on the negative story what if bad people get hold of Bitcoin what if people use Bitcoin to buy drugs and I find these questions really interesting because the truth of it in fact is that the vast majority of drugs in the world continue to be bought in US dollars in fact if you look at the lifecycle of popular drugs even if you managed to buy them with Bitcoin those drugs were cultivated planted harvested processed reprocessed cuts transported smuggled transported cut again distributed and finally sold for US dollars in fact most likely someone rolled up the US dollar put it in their nose and snorted those drugs straight up their nose leaving a residue off the drugs on the US dollar now as far as I know you can't do any of those things including the rolling up of the Bitcoin to put in your nose to snow at the drugs with Bitcoin in fact in order to buy drugs with Bitcoin you would have to first get dollars find someone who will sell you Bitcoin buy Bitcoin find someone who will sell you drugs for Bitcoin give them Bitcoin get drugs and then they'd sell the Bitcoin for dollars so they can pay their supplier that sounds like a really complicated way no listen real criminals use HSBC bank no I'm sorry I misspoke what I meant was real criminals owned HSBC bank HSBC Bank and Wachovia got caught laundering seven hundred billion dollars over an eight-year period over the us-mexico border to funnel money into the Sinaloa cartel that resulted in an estimated 19,000 dead people they got so good at it that at some point the local branch had the teller windows made to the specific size of a suitcase that was popularly sold in the local area so the people could put suitcases full of cash straight through the teller window to increase the flow their biggest problem was the fact that they had had to carry dozens of these suitcases with wheelbarrows into the local branch to shove them through the teller window and this way they smuggled seven hundred billion dollars directly into the hands of the Sinaloa cartel now of course you know what happens when you do something like that right nothing at all right they got fined in fact they got fined less than 150 million dollars which was less than the profit they made on these transactions not a single person went to jail 19,000 violations of the anti Money Laundering Act were completely ignored by the authorities so what is the truth here the truth is that criminals use banks and in many cases criminals own banks because in the judicial system of the way it works you have classes of crime if you steal less than a million dollars it's a minor theft probably a misdemeanor if you steal more than a million dollars you start getting into serious trouble but if you steal more than a billion dollars you get a bailout from the US government the bottom line is the Bitcoin isn't about drugs and Bitcoin isn't about criminals and the reason for that is because criminals and drug addicts make a vanishingly small percentage of the population and bitcoin has already started going mainstream and as a technology goes mainstream it adopts the values and principles of a mainstream audience and a mainstream audience uses Bitcoin today for a number one cause charitable donations tipping and giving right that's what bitcoin is being used today I can make a prediction that in a few years one of the primary uses for Bitcoin will be foreign remittances here's another market where banks are profiting in the most disgusting way possible every year immigrants working in in countries other than their own send home more than five hundred and fifty billion dollars in a market called foreign remittances they send home back to their families and the average immigrant supports more than twelve people back home usually an entire community most of that money goes into the hands women who use that money to invest in sanitation health care and education in the local communities and this is the market that organizations like Western Union have decided is a great place to make profit and they make profit to the tune of a hundred and seventy-five billion dollars a year by charging the poorest people on the planet ten percent or more to send money home it's an absolute shame and here's the great news

7 thoughts on “Best Features of Bitcoin and Cryptocurrency [Andreas Antonopoulos] Bitcoin Will Hit $25,000 in 2019”

  1. BTC is the peoples "lawful money of account and it is its own unit of measure" contrast this with private Bank, fraudulent, intrinsically worthless, government's sponsored benefit vouchers known as "fiat" currency that has zero unit of measure.

    So what's the differences?

    With fiat, its counterfeited by quantative easing, essentially governments simply sanctioning the printing presses to run to print more with no backing. This devalues further the perceived value of what is not money but merely currency, fiat saving are constantly under this form of attack, inflation and the need for a Bank is compulsory. This is a currency, not Lawful money

    BTC. You can mine it, securely store it, trade it and the transaction will be securely, permanently ledgered (blockchain) this has both worth and value and there is zero requirement for a bank. You the owner are the bank. This is both a money and a currency.

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