Lesson From Linux: History Repeating Itself
There are many parallels to what is taking place with blockchain and the early days of Internet/computing. We are watching history repeat itself.
Linux is an amazing story of growth. Starting in 1991 as a single Kernel, it has grown into a multi-billion dollar industry. In fact, Microsoft recently paid $34B for Red Hat, one of the largest Linux providers.
The software is completely open source. There are now tens of millions of lines of code developed by programmers over all these years.
Today, starting as a desktop system, Linux is in Netbooks, gaming, embedded devices, smart phones, and most of the web servers.
While 30 years is a long time, it does show how far and wide the open source architecture can go. In spite of larger, better financed entities, Linux continued to grow over time. The fact that mega technology companies like Microsoft are dumping tens of billions into companies built upon this platform shows how power this type of system is.
Fortunately for all of us, Blockchain is following the same model.
Permissionless blockchains are open source with the ability to impact the world similar to how Linux did. We have the ability to go from a single block to the foundation for the entire global economy.
Linux teaches us that patience is required. It did not go from a single kernel to hundred of billion dollars in a blink of an eye. Instead, over the decades, things morphed, expanded, and grew. Millions of lines of code had to be laid down before Microsoft came onto the scene.
I see a lot of people getting antsy about what is taking place on Steem and with blockchain in general. We are seeing some remarkable progress even though most do not see it. Each week there are new developments that are rapidly changing how networks are being designed.
The enterprise world is even embracing blockchain. Granted, they are not open source and those type of companies will do all they can to maintain control. In the end, like Microsoft, they will succumb. Banks, insurance companies, and supply chains are all going to be disrupted.
Ultimately, this is still the geek's game. We are seeing them banging away at code, updating what was previously hung on here. At the same time, we are witnessing new applications showing up on a weekly basis. This is what is going to bring this technology to the forefront.
Our world is moving further into the digital realm. Many of the anticipated technologies over the next 5 years are going to be tied to blockchain. VR/AR, IoT, autonomous vehicles, and 3D printing all are going to be complimented by blockchain.
Also, since blockchain is, at its core, simply a digital ledger that performs accounting tasks, it is the foundation of the entire global economy. Instead, of double entry bookkeeping, the world is going to convert to triple-entry bookkeeping. By the way, this will obliterate what is left of the accounting field.
Our home on Steem keeps expanding. We are seeing many wonderful breakthrough with exchanges like Steem-Engine and FreedomEx. Both of these are providing the ability to swap tokens for other. Taking it one step further, @freedomex announced the ability to buy STEEM using fiat through their partnering with Netcoins.
It is easy to overlook this but having a fiat gateway is crucial. Many complain about the token price yet it is only logical when it is rather difficult to get the token with fiat. This process was made easier with this move.
None of this is a sprint. It is a marathon in the development of Web 3.0. Each development is another brick in the foundation to build upon. Ideas are being spread and experimented with. Many will not work and will lead to failure. However, there will be some breakthroughs which make a startling difference.
Exponential growth are very common in technology. Things start off slowly, often looking like we are spinning our wheels. However, there comes a day when everyone is taken by surprise. This includes people within the industry.
Amazon is a prime example. It took more than a decade for it to become a major player before everyone realized it was creating a retail apocalypse.
I have a feeling blockchain will be the same way. A lot happens behind the scenes out of the eyes of the average person. There does come a day when things enter the consciousness and they are made aware of what took place.
The lessons are all around us. All of them tell the same story. Patience is required while we are on the flat section of the curve. While things look like they are not heading anywhere, they truly are. And each day, we get closer to the elbow of the curve.
For those of us who are around in three decades, we will look back upon this and realize how we were heading to the turning point. The path before us is pretty clear.
It only requires continued daily effort on the part of all of us.
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