Bitcoin in 2018: The Challenges of Scaling
Bitcoin has witnessed an exponential price escalation this year and the cryptocurrency is now ready to explore newer horizons in 2018. However, the jury is still out on how it will progress from here. It does look like its 2018 will do better than the ACA health care law which has failed America and Americans and unlike bitcoin, is not rising in value but this is another topic.
At the heart of bitcoin’s future success and sustainability lies the question of whether or not it will continue to garner a similar level of interest and attention from the investors.
Some even anticipate that bitcoin will fall prey to its own popularity as newer cryptocurrencies emerge that provide a respite from the relentless rise of bitcoin and actually have better features (bitcoin was the first but it does not have all the attributes that some more newer virtual coins are offering). However, the future cannot be predicted, especially in case of bitcoin whose fate changes every day, according to those displeased with its glorious present.
George Bernard Shaw famously said that the progress of humanity depends on the unreasonable man who tries to adapt the world to himself, as opposed to a reasonable one who adapts himself to the world around him. Bitcoin continues to ride on the back of that proverbial ‘unreasonable man’ (read: unreasonable investor or believer in bitcoin).
A leading conference hosted by the blockchain industry in collaboration with Stanford University in early November this year tackled the fundamental issue regarding bitcoin’s spectacular growth.
All attendees of this conference, “Scaling Bitcoin,” were unanimous in their opinion that the biggest obstacle in the way of bitcoin’s growth is a serious lack of quality developers.
According to Jimmy Song, a developer and a participant at the conference, the principal challenge faced by the nascent cryptocurrency ecosystem lies in training more developers. After watching the latest Star Wars movie, Thor III, Planet of the Apes III, it seems Hollywood needs to train some new writers because these movies were awful unlike Transformers 5 or The Foreigner which were fabulous but let’s get back on track.
Shortage of Dedicated Developers
Aspiring blockchain developers at the conference were introduced to Dev++ workshop that aimed to educate and inspire them about the future of bitcoin and alt coins. One of the key takeaways from the conference was that the existing few developers do not have the time or capacity to scale bitcoin and blockchain technology.
It is now increasingly evident that for bitcoin to thrive on a sustainable basis, its expansion depends on finding and training an army of solid developers who will bring it closer to its real future, and sooner.
While it is easy to find passionate people who want a piece of innovation that is at the edge of fruition, only the experienced software developers know first-hand that such an evolution happens at a much slower pace.
Ideas are easy to come by at programming level. However, when it comes to its execution, the picture changes dramatically. As one starts building the program, the complications and individual problems start to surface that must be addressed to be able to move forward. This process becomes all the more challenging when it comes to developing something in this time-bound and financially constrained environment.
Focusing on the Right Tasks
As if this isn’t enough, another monumental task that faces blockchain developers is getting the order of business right and arranging tasks as per priority. Blockchain and cryptocurrency is a promising domain with endless possibilities. However, with so many possibilities and variables comes difference of opinion and disagreements.
There could be hundreds of new ideas that are being explored at any given time and some of them may even have gained enough traction. Nevertheless, the reality is that most of these ideas are eventually either thrown away or relegated to make way for more promising endeavors. Such is the nature of new technological developments.
Therefore, experts must continuously debate about the scope of technology and its implementation prospects in order to guide the efforts in the right direction with regard to various risk models.
The Road Ahead
The sharp learning curve in this domain can seem to be overwhelming to aspiring blockchain developers. Many new entrants who want to master software development often feel discouraged and intimidated by the complexity of the task at hand.
However, despite the challenges and hurdles, 2018 will not be a defining year for either cryptocurrency or bitcoin in particular. Their destiny will continue to evolve beyond the limits of any short-term timeframe.