The Future of Finance
Since I reached working age, I have been fortunate to work secularly in two areas that I like. Software and finance. I have worked for insurance firms, banks, and banking software companies. I like software. I like numbers. I always have.
Now I am fortunate to work with the BitShares Core team as we maintain and enhance the Core product. I spend my days creating and modifying code to make the system work the way the users want. We spend a lot of time making sure it is secure. We tweak code to make it do the same thing only faster.
I do not know it all. The language I program in and the product I work on are too big for one person to understand completely. But I work with some very smart people. I learn from them every day.
I would like to say that BitShares is the future of finance, but I won't. If I did all would say I am biased, as I help maintain it. But for two bigger reasons, I cannot say with any certainty that BitShares will take over the financial world.
Firstly, no one can tell the future. Many want to believe they can (especially in finance). But someday someone could develop a platform that makes BitShares look old and tired. It happens.
Secondly, while one product may be technologically superior, another may have something that the first cannot compete with. Be it market share, brand recognition, established contracts, etc.
While I cannot say with any certainty that BitShares is the future, I can say that BitShares has many things going for it.
The primary driver is cryptocurrency in general. Blockchain technology is certainly taking over finance. I see it every day. And cryptocurrency is changing lives. It may not be accepted at your local store now, but it is coming. It will arrive quicker than many are thinking. As blockchain technology matures and cryptocurrency use grows, the utility of BitShares increases.
But more specific to BitShares, is the way it is built. Governance is a big hassle. That is true in every blockchain project I have heard of. BitShares is no exception. But the governance of the project and network is very well done. Much of the financial control is put in the hands of those that have built businesses on it. While individually they look out for their own interests, the governance of BitShares (for the most part) transcends the politics of any one group.
Another big win with BitShares is WHAT it is. It is a distributed exchange. It allows users complete control, and without puting financial trust in the hands of one organization. You are the owner and custodian of your assets. It is not completely trustless, but neither are US Treasury Bonds.
The latest headlines are of Binance and their distributed exchange. I do not have the details, but unless they're running on the BitShares network or something similar, I would say that their definition of "distributed exchange" is different from mine. If one of the big entities that keep BitShares alive fails, the network will probably survive. Will that same thing be true for other "distributed exchanges" that are owned and operated by one entity? That is something to consider before opening an account.
A powerful entity, such as a government, can cause havoc on an exchange. Think of Mt Gox, BTC-e, etc. Can the same happen to BitShares? Perhaps, but it would probably take a coordinated effort of several governments to do so. In most "disaster" scenarios that I can think of, the worst result is a temporary interruption in service. And even that would take a big investment.
As the Internet circa 2001 showed, all "vaporware" and many real businesses will fail when investors pull funding and customers vote with their feet. We will see that in the crypto/blockchain world as well. But BitShares has roots that will make such times survivable, even beneficial.
Now, I am not saying it is easy sailing from here on out. There will no doubt be challenges. What I am saying is that my "insider" view of BitShares provides me a good measure of confidence that the product, the ecosystem, and the community will continue to grow. Thanks to all who have contributed to establishing a great product and network. While I cannot speak for the team, I believe they would all agree that we are happy to be carrying the torch forward through an exciting future.
Agree? Disagree? Chime in below...