How Will Blockchain Technology Enter the Mainstream? | Writers Contest Winner #2

Photo by Timon Studler

Josh, a long time supporter of æternity, shares his thoughts on how blockchain adoption will happen and why æternity will be a catalyst for it.

Public, open-source blockchains are moving towards the mainstream. Slowly but surely, blockchain based cryptocurrencies are becoming more relevant in our daily lives than government issued fiat. In the near future, salaries, savings, and payments will be done on blockchains. The technology will also be applied in various applications — some of which are currently being developed. While there are others we haven’t even thought of yet.

But Why Aren’t We There Yet?

Blockchain technology must yield real value to users and businesses by being cohesive, intuitive, and trusted to function properly. This will take time.

We need to get to a point where the user doesn’t even know that they are using blockchain technology. The core functionality is nicely tucked in the back-end, while the value is extracted through an intuitive front-end.

Despite what people believe, adoption is currently only loosely correlated to market cap.

The Advantages of Blockchain Technology

Some of the added value that decentralized computing platforms could bring include:

  1. Secure and private value storage;
  2. Quick, cheap, trustless and borderless transfers;
  3. Decentralized insurance;
  4. Transparent governance mechanisms and code-imposed regulation;
  5. Cheap banking services for developing countries;
  6. Fiat-pegged stablecoins that pay interest comparable to fiat money markets;
  7. Privacy and censorship resistance from governments and malicious entities.

Point #7 is especially important. It is at the core of the cryptocurrency/blockchain idea. It can only be achieved in public, decentralized, anti-fragile blockchain systems. All of those feature a cryptocurrency as a unit of account.

The maturity of the blockchain industry is also related to education. Education for users (and developers) is being sponsored by exchanges, blockchain platform foundations, even governments. Educational materials are constantly being developed by open-source enthusiasts, decentralized app developers, and the blockchain community as a whole.

Adoption Needs You…and æternity

Gaining adoption requires ongoing platform and decentralized app development. However, developers are not the only group that pushes the revolution forward. An array of other talents are already joining the global decentralization movement. Those include marketing and communication experts, legal professionals, hardware geeks, entrepreneurs, and even artists.

Nonetheless, to support billions of users, a blockchain must be highly scalable and able to ensure high throughput or transactions and computational executions. æternity has incorporated a streamlined on-chain consensus protocol (Bitcoin-NG) and features built-in, off-chain state channels. Once opened these channels allow free, instant, unlimited transactions between two parties without overloading the main chain.

State channels can store smart contracts, enabling automated execution of smart contracts for micro/nano payments, exchange of digital property, or transfer of tokenized assets.

æternity features protocol-integrated oracles to provide valuable real-world data to the blockchain, as well as to incentivize users to join the platform and earn tokens by submitting requested crowd-sourced information. The æternity protocol and dev tools are developed as to provide a ‘one-stop-shop’ environment, featuring all essential components “out-of-the-box”. State channels, oracles, and the naming system are all specified on the protocol layer. No need to use third-party services (and their tokens). All you need is AE.

Furthermore, æternity launched æternity Ventures to invest in and guide projects building on the platform. To make æpps less bug prone, æternity provides documentation, software development kits (SDK’s), and has designed a functional smart contract language — Sophia — which prevents unforeseen side effects and aims to enable formal verification. Governance of the platform is ideally a balance between miners and AE token holders, which is why æternity is working on implementing token weighted, on-chain voting.


On a basic level, the will of the people will spur blockchain into the mainstream. Younger generations are familiar with modern technology and as they come into financial maturity they will appreciate the benefits of blockchain more than entrenched “old money”. Many of today’s efforts may fade, but at least a hændful will bloom.

If you like what I had to say, you may check out my æternity-related YouTube channel!

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