By Don Tapscott and Alex Tapscott
Book review by Dwight
To quote the authors, “the technology likely to have the greatest impact on the future of the world economy has arrived, and it’s not self-driving cars, solar energy, or artificial intelligence. It’s called the blockchain.”
Few will dispute that the widespread adoption of the Internet and all the technologies that it has enabled have had a profound impact on the world in which we live. On the one hand, it has been a marvelous tool to connect people, to share knowledge, and to make the world more efficient.
On the other hand, the utopian view of a connected world hasn’t quite materialized. In fact, critics would argue that a disproportionate amount of the financial benefit from the Internet has accrued to a few entities: the gatekeepers (credit card companies, payment processors, financial services giants, the “internet monopolists” (think Amazon, Google, Facebook), and of course, internet criminals and fraudsters. Life was much simpler when all you had to worry about were pickpockets and burglars!
Blockchain technology addresses many of the shortcomings of the current Internet, and will form the foundation for the second generation of the Internet. While the blockchain protocol is ingeniously simple, its ramifications are profound, and will result in a massive change in the way we do business… restoring privacy and security to the Internet, reducing costs, and eliminating many of the gatekeepers that exist today (imagine a world where you pay no transaction fees to securely transfer money, buy or sell stocks, buy or sell your home, purchase goods online). Blockchain is also the technology behind crypto-currencies such as Bitcoin and Ethereum, so understanding the blockchain will give the reader some insights into how these work, too.
This book is not an easy read, but it is an essential read for anyone who wants to understand the forces that will reshape business in the next ten years. I recommend it highly.