Our portfolio company Kik announced some big news today.

They are going to decentralize Kik and use a new cryptocurrency called Kin to build a business model around a decentralized Kik and, hopefully, attract other developers to build decentralized communities using Kin as well.

All of this is outlined in the Kin Whitepaper that was published this morning.

Here are the main parts of this plan:

Kin is a cryptocurrency designed to bring people together in a new shared economy.
Envisioned as a general purpose cryptocurrency for use in everyday digital services, Kin will be used for all transactions within the Kin Ecosystem. Implemented on the public Ethereum blockchain as an ERC20 token, Kin will serve as the basis of interoperability with other digital services in the Kin Ecosystem.

Kik will be the first digital service to join the Kin Ecosystem.
Kin will power a digital economy inside of the Kik app. With millions of users, Kik will drive mainstream consumer adoption of Kin, establishing fundamental value for the cryptocurrency. By natively integrating the Kin wallet into the app, it will instantly become one of the most adopted and used cryptocurrency wallets in the world.

The Kin Rewards Engine is an innovative cryptoeconomic structure intended to promote the use of Kin as a common currency.
Through the Kin Rewards Engine, Kin will be introduced into circulation as a daily reward, to be distributed among stakeholders by an algorithm that reflects each community’s contribution to the overall ecosystem. This economic structure will create a natural incentive for owners of other digital services to adopt Kin and become partners in the Kin Ecosystem.

The Kin Foundation will act as the non-profit governance body for the Kin Ecosystem. to build, enhance and monetize those services.
Over time, the Kin Foundation will ensure the delicate transition of the Kin Ecosystem into a fully decentralized and autonomous network.

As I said in the release that went out this morning, we believe cryptocurrency is the next important business model innovation in tech and Kik will be the first mainstream application to integrate a cryptocurrency. This could be a watershed moment for the blockchain sector.


Comments (Archived):

  1. aminTorres

    The USV portfolio is on fire lately…

    1. fredwilson

      Hair on fire more appropriately

      1. aminTorres

        Who lit the fire? – sorry, I had to ask. 🙂

      2. Chimpwithcans

        better than pants on fire…..more honest and truthful 🙂

        1. marcoliver


  2. jason wright

    Whitepaper – 5. Technical considerations. to me this section articulates the big technical issue (elephant) for the blockchain ecosystem.p.s. i like the links to other USV posts. convenient.

    1. Rob Underwood

      +1 The links to the other USV posts are great.

      1. Nick Grossman

        thx – brand new feature we’re testing out

      2. karen_e

        Agree, that format should be a better driver to further information.

    2. Nick Grossman

      thanks – that’s new as of yesterday

      1. jason wright

        a winner

  3. Humberto

    “They are going to decentralize Kik and use a new cryptocurrency called Kin to build a business model around a decentralized Kik”If I understood the whitepaper correctly, Kik the App is not being decentralised, technically or organisationally.. they’re “only” baking in a decentralised currency which allows for businesses inside Kik to operate more autonomously than before.. or rather they are providing decentralisation as a service to kik communities. a big feat no doubt, but not quite the same.maybe I got it wrong?

    1. jason wright

      maybe you didn’t. it feels like a defensive strategy hoping to create a new network effect.for any web tech company with a centralised product or service blockchain is a massive threat. it will be the challenge of a lifetime to adapt… or die.

    2. falicon

      There are multiple steps that are going to occur:1. They are going to basically convert users from kik virtual currency/points into using ‘kin’. From a user point it will basically look and operate just like their previous in-app currency/point stuff did…but on the backend they will start with a hybrid technical implementation that is centrally controlled (by a new foundation) but sits on top of a decentralized system (Ethereum)…over time and as technical challenges are worked out, they will remove the centralized control bit and (ideally) be 100% on the Ethereum network.2. At the same time, they are going to try to get other apps/companies to also adopt the ‘kin’ system. So the kin you earn or buy in Kik will also hold/have value outside of Kik itself. (also because it’s tied to Ethereum, you will be able to buy-in/cash-out directly to Ether if you want and have the ‘technical’ ability to do so)3. They are going to work towards open-sourcing most (if not all) of the code behind the Kik app itself…with the idea that the ‘value’ is going to be in ‘kin’ and the ‘ecosystem’ and not the central/proprietary control per-se….though this will be a longer goal/intent from my understanding….at least that’s my understanding after the 1st read through the white paper…SUPER interesting stuff.

      1. Humberto

        interesting indeed. my comment is only regarding how decentralized it really is.regarding your point nr. 3, where in the doc is it exactly?

        1. falicon

          first paragraph of page 7 in the white paper:”As part of this process, Kik will incrementally transition to open source for the majority of its currentlyproprietary codebase.”

          1. Humberto

            thanks. still a bit generic, but this will be great for people if they can do it.

      2. Twain Twain

        Thank goodness we have you here to read the technical paper and give us the gold nuggets in easy to understand language.

        1. falicon

          Disclaimer: *Always* check my work…my thoughts and opinions here are generally only worth half as much as you paid for them. 🙂

          1. Twain Twain


      3. Don Mullen

        Interesting indeed. I do prefer vision — fully decentralized from the start and dapp integration on mobile. They are in alpha – but have a great vision and likely will using upcoming token sale more for community governance. Looking forward to readying their soon-to-be-released whitepaper.

        1. Benjamin M. Brown

          I prefer the vision as well, but they’re missing one of the most important parts: 15 million young users.

  4. Kurt Stangl

    Exciting news! Totally worth a hair fire 🙂

  5. Rob Underwood

    Just reiterating something I’ve mentioned here before — I have been impressed by Kik’s developer tools, documentation, and starter/template code for building bots and doing other useful work like integrating bots w/ different AI tools, etc. I trust they’ll do a good job in these new roles (e.g., stewarding an ecosystem) and this new overall structure, including the support of and liaison work to the developer community.

    1. JamesHRH

      Yes, but is Kin part of the WeBeWeChatNA strategy or is it giving up?The third option is that its defensive, which is fair enough. Its not like you can M&A your way out of a distributed, P2P, revolutionary new version of the internet.

  6. Ron Shah

    Seems like USV is “going all in” on the blockchain thesis. While I believe in the promise of this technology, there still is a lack of specific ‘killer apps’ that have moved the needle commercially. Am I missing something? What is the risk that USV faces with so much concentration around this technology. Seems to be shifting away from all the winning marketplace/media investments like Etsy, Twitter, etc

    1. Nick Grossman

      still doing lots of the “traditional” stuff — just that the relatively small amount of blockchain stuff is getting a lot of attention right nowthat said, we do believe blockchains & cryptocurrencies are a profound new thing that will be the basis of lots of innovation & investment in the future

      1. LE

        Gotta tell you that even though I don’t know how much of the USV’s team’s brain is spent on the blockchain, the parent comment still resonated with me. it seems that they are spending ‘2 to 3 hours a day on this stuff’ but I know that is not the case. So I apologize for that.The thing is this. Marketing wise Fred or Albert blogging about this (as much as they have done) creates a potential disincentive for a person with another idea to contact USV to pitch their product. [1]So it’s more than allocation of investment dollars. It’s also about attention, excitement and most importantly opportunity cost.[1] Like if your friend is always talking about sports you are less likely to think of them when you want to go to or talk about movies. In simplistic terms, the concept.

        1. jason wright

          they do seem to be somewhat hooked on cryptock at the moment.

      2. Ron Shah

        Agreed that blockchains and cryptos have tons of potential. Would love to see you guys write a “real deal” piece about the risks of these investments and how even USV could ‘lose its shirt’ if commercialization and timing doesn’t work out, particularly considering the concentration and dollars invested in this theme. Personally I think the emphasis on blockchain seems eerily familiar to fiber broadband investing in the late 90s and early 00s. Lots of investments, huge potential, but only a few worked out. Many funds, even industry leading funds, were wiped out with thematic investing in those days. This is what happens when funds move away from the fundamentals- investing in great teams with proven industry applications- to theme-driven allocations like blockchain and AI. Huge risks for their LPs and the community at large. IMHO.

        1. Nick Grossman

          well, the risk is the same as the risk with all of our investments — losing our investment capital. it’s not like other kinds of investing (say, shorting stocks) where there is unlimited downside.that said, we definitely see the parallels to 90s era internet investing and are basically assuming there will be a bubble pop at some point, followed by broader mainstream adoption…

    2. Matt A. Myers

      Fred’s open about cryptocurrencies ‘being like stock’ and that they expect (and need) the value of the cryptocurrencies to go up once they’ve ‘bought’ them; I still don’t think it really should have the word currency in it.The problem is buying cryptocurrencies is not like buying stock in a company, as cryptocurrencies aren’t on a stock market – they’re trying to become a global currency, to gain marketshare globally.The other problem is “$100 in bitcoin in 2010 now worth almost $73 million” –…That’s someone who spent $100 and now has $72.99+ MM of buying power 7 years later – for doing nothing. This has to be the exact and base reason these platforms are trying to get their cryptocurrencies of choice to gain traction/adoption; yes, there are pros/positives to a cryptocurrency, they haven’t solved for this con which is what is incentivizing all of this activity – the incentive should be different. Kik starting this off gives them that “$100” buy-in advantage, and getting their users to adopt it without knowing what they’re adopting is clever, however I don’t think it’s a fair way for ‘wealth accumulation.’How many $100,000,000,000s (hundreads of billions) of ‘profit’ can one gain if they become the dominant cryptocurrency? How many parties are willing to share this? How many people are incentivized and aligned together to make this happen? A growing amount.

  7. falicon

    “Kik prefers to be a participant rather than a landlord in this user-first economy.”If nothing else, this is an impressive and admirable stance by Kik. How can we not want to root for this approach to work?!

    1. falicon

      btw – for those that don’t have the time to read the full white paper, check out this great video about the high level stuff ->…and then go back and read the white paper later this week (it’s got A LOT of interesting ideas in it; *very* worth reading through)…

  8. kidmercury

    Wow, this is a very admirable effort. Kik team should be proud!

  9. Jordan

    What’s the fundamental use case?A general purpose crypto, built on top of a general purpose crypto for building decentralized apps?The language in the whitepaper is extremely vague and non-specific. If they try to do everything, they will accomplish nothing.Under perspective use cases: Monetizing popularity?Is that really good for society?Under governance: The Kin Foundation will dedicate resources to establish a fair and transparent governance process that will take into account the voices and needs of all participants within the ecosystem.This says nothing. We need technical details that are contractually enforceable.Under Distribution: To aid the Kin Foundation in carrying out its mission, the majority of the supply allocation of Kin will serve as a monetary reserve at the limited discretion of the foundation.1 Trillion of 10 trillion is for sale? And 3 Trillion will be given to Kik?Things like this make me think crypto is blowing a massive bubble, which will hurt many. After it pops, the money exits, the pretender cryptos with no use case are dropped, then I think crypto will change the world, but there will be pain first. This Kin development has me on high alert.Under Settlement: It says that Ethereum will be the settlement layer. How exactly will users settle? By taking ETH to Coinbase? What about users that don’t want to interact with Coinbase, but want to go direct to traditional fiat?ETH is great for smart contracts, ETH is not good for settlement. ETH can create value, but cannot settle it, yet.

    1. Gavin Cowie

      Your commentary all through this article is very much on point. I would like to subscribe to your newsletter.

    2. Benjamin M. Brown

      What is your definition of ‘settlement’?

  10. Chimpwithcans

    Wow… exciting, and a major differentiation for Kik from WhatsApp, Facebook messenger, hangouts, etc.

  11. William Mougayar

    Yes! I’m interviewing Ted Livingston at the Token Summit about Kin at 12pm. It’s being periscoped on twitter .

  12. Frank W. Miller

    Here’s an interesting nugget from the white paper that I was unaware of:”The current throughput of Ethereum is approximately 8.5 transactions per second, or approximately 740,000 daily transactions.12 Over time, the Ethereum network can also adjust to higher volume conditions for additional throughput.”My supposition has been that the long pole in the Ethereum platform would be security (i.e. introducing programmability to the block chain transactions increases security risks by definition). I was unaware that there were transaction processing limits across the global transaction space. I’d be interested in any other discussion of this point.

    1. Jordan

      ETH is best for smart-contracts, they have scalability problems that may get fixed with the raiden network.As much as people in the crypto-community hate XRP, it settles 1000+ transactions per second, with ledgers closing every 3 seconds. From a pragmatic perspective, if it is paired with ETH, then all of the sudden, ETH DAPPs have a way to settle, in any currency, traditional or crypto, to all institutions, from a decentralized wallet to a traditional bank.So in near real time, this is possible:Wallet/Decentralied Bank/ Traditional Bank<=> any currency <=> ILP/XRP <=> DAPP / Service / MarketplaceWith settlement and micro-payments possible, it’s not hard to imagine that Uber, Spotify, Twitter, Facebook, Centralized Crypto-Exchanges, and all the other tech 2.0 companies, will be upended. Especially since the network effects they worked so hard to build will be destroyed, as silos are leveled by decentralized identity.

  13. Jordan

    With the creation of 10 trillion Kin, 90% controlled by the Kik / the Kin Foundation, the valuation of one Kin should be no higher than $.0001, but likely closer to $.00001, IMO.This is not a free $10 Billion give away.With a Kin valuation so low, it will also make settlement very hard because it will require a micro-micro payment, when the world is still trying to solve micro-payments.

    1. falicon

      I think to start especially, it will be 99% in-app transactions…so it will feel and operate like any company that just created ‘credits’ or some in-app currency (but it will *actually* have an outside world value associated to it that ‘potentially’ continues to grow).

  14. mplsvbhvr

    Huge news – congrats

  15. John Fazzolari

    How did Kik decide to establish the Kin Foundation as part of this? Notice many companies establish a 501c-3 as they get larger (another ex/ in USV’s portfolio is Twilio) and was wondering how you think about this and what is appropriate?

    1. thinkdisruptive

      This sounds almost exactly like WeChat tokens.

  16. Mark

    A bold and brilliant move. Kudos to them. Also, smart of USV to get actively involved in what will be the transformation of their own business model.

  17. Kin Lane

    Not sure how I feel about this. ;-(

  18. Justin Poirier

    Amazing! Exciting times and so nice to see this is being attempted on the public chain! I wondered whether there’d be a private attempt at this first in a big way, so great to see a team that gets where this is heading and knows it needs to be open.

  19. JamesHRH

    A communal co-opetition ecosystem. Very new agey.Its amazing how neatly he slipped the gobbledygook baseline tech line in – a EPC 20 whatever token on Ethereum. Its like he knew it was the banana peel.As long as mining for tokens is central to all of this awesomeness, I think people will be hesitant.No one has ever answered that fundamental issue – just like no one can actually easily explain how blockchain works to me.I think this is important – I mean, you can explain an IC & a database to people pretty easily.

    1. falicon

      How does the U.S. dollar really work?Most people will either say “I don’t actually know” or maybe “it’s backed by gold” (though it’s really not anymore)…and yet they will all agree that it does work and that it *does* have value…and at the end of the day, it’s that common perception and belief that matters when trying to use it for goods and services.All of the tech. behind this stuff is basically the same sort of thing…the important thing as adoption occurs is really just the ‘perception and belief’ that it all *just works*…and I think that perception and belief continues to grow daily…

  20. LukeG

    “They are going to decentralize Kik and use a new cryptocurrency called Kin to build a business model around a decentralized Kik and, hopefully, attract other developers to build decentralized communities using Kin as well.”I had to double-check today’s date.

  21. Matt A. Myers

    A lot of momentum going into driving more users into cryptocurrencies, really hoping the value of these coins goes up exponentially – so the main holders become as rich as Kings, through a hidden tax on people.

  22. creative group

    CONTRIBUTORS:No need for Captain Obvious to comment it has already been thoroughly questioned and analyzed.Great job to the few Contributors who did.

  23. David Semeria

    “This could be a watershed moment for the blockchain sector.”Indeed it could — if only I could understand the press release.

    1. Girish Mehta

      Understanding the press release could be a watershed moment in my life.

  24. marcoliver

    Just because you introduced a new language, it does not mean people can communicate more effectively with each other. The same is true for ‘currencies’.

  25. falicon

    It def. feels a bit ‘highlander-ish’ to me right now…but if you step back a bit, I think each is really doing something fairly different (and, potentially, big):Kin – flipping in-app currency to decentralized blockchain currency; Attempting to reward engagement with ‘real world value’.Token – providing micro-transaction, digital currency, and basic banking capabilities to anyone/everyone. Attempting to globalize and mobilize financial activity.Blockstack – providing easy developer access to decentralized services. Attempting to move the building blocks of services and apps to a decentralized approach.From a ‘regular’ person approach, I think Kin is the easiest to understand and engage with (and probably going to be the biggest hit early on).I think those interested in the global economy (and especially what we call 3rd world countries) should get most excited about Token. (potentially world-changing but likely ignored in the U.S. for foreseeable future)And I think the ‘tech focused developers’ are probably excited by the potential of Blockstack (prob. going to see a lot of clunky, hard to adopt, things built here to start — but if excitement can stick, could be the ‘web of the future’)

  26. JamesHRH

    Not if you have a piece of all of them and you think tech is still a winner take all ecosystem.

  27. Twain Twain

    Exactly, it’s the engineers rather than business folks who are the decision-makers on Blockchain.Before, MS brought out a suite of Word, Excel, PowerPoint etc to service the business folks.Now, the “killer app” is whichever IDE and documentation makes engineers happiest.

  28. thinkdisruptive

    It feels like Blockstack and Kin are related/complementary. Can anyone explain the connection (if there is one) in simple language?

  29. falicon

    Yes. Kin could be a virtual currency that apps built within the Blockstack paradigm implement/take advantage of.BTW – Token could also implement/take advantage of Kin if they wanted to down the road (i.e. if it ends up winning the ‘average user’)

  30. thinkdisruptive

    “it’s the engineers rather than business folks who are the decision-makers on Blockchain”That can’t stay true for very long if it is to become a real thing. You could say the same thing about the internet in 1993. Real utility for average people is needed for any of this to matter.

  31. thinkdisruptive

    Is that an established relationship or just theoretical? It feels like the features of a complete product are emerging from multiple companies, and it would be easier to take off and be useful if there was a recommended or integrated stack to work with.

  32. falicon

    Theoretical.Actually, I believe Kin itself, is still theoretical. This is just an announcement about stuff they are working on/about to work on.Lots of activity around ‘blockchain’ these days…so absolutely a lot of duplication of effort and/or branches of various approaches…no clear or obvious winners yet (but a company of Kik’s size and reach is a HUGE advantage).

  33. Twain Twain

    Before folks could wear jewelry or drink milk, the technical folks had to invent and build the smelting processes and the sterilization machines.

  34. thinkdisruptive

    I’m sure you know that neither of those examples is true. And even as useless a product as Facebook was designed to help Mark meet girls. Purpose usually comes first with successful products.

  35. Twain Twain

    Every major advancement in human evolution has been preceded by the invention of some scientific tool or other.Numbers were invented and it created commerce. Probability was invented and it enabled factory owners to do Production Possibility Curves and distribution curves on efficiency and behavioral norms that affected output. As a tool, probability helped model the processes that drove the Industrial Revolution.Business people like to argue that there has to be a market need before product invention happens but then … Steve Jobs paraphrased Henry Ford … https://uploads.disquscdn.c

  36. thinkdisruptive

    You misstate your arguments, or misunderstand what’s really happening. For example, numbers didn’t create commerce — numbers were created to account for commerce. The technology was created to solve a problem. Nobody knew how powerful that invention would be as an abstraction that allowed us to describe and discover so much else (and we’re still discovering applications), but it had a purpose first. The purpose did not arise as an emergent property.Advances don’t follow tools. Tools are created to solve problems which create advances.The same is true of the Ford quote. Just because people don’t know what they really want as a solution or can’t articulate it, doesn’t mean they don’t have needs or outcomes they desire. Most people jump to solutions, so yes if the real need is to get from A to B faster, and the only frame of reference you have is a horse, then you want faster horses. The engineer’s job to translate needs (or statements like “I’d really like a faster horse”) into a solution (the car, the iPhone) that satisfies the real requirement. The market never will be able to do this.When pure science discovers new things, like electricity or how x-ray radiation works, it may or may not have future application in products, but rarely is this what we expect of startups. Startups should be taking science and applying it to solve problems, not creating stuff for which there is no clear need (unless it is the inventor’s own money and hobby time).

  37. Twain Twain

    Was there a need for PCs or did Apple create that need through marketing?Is there a need for Blockchain or is that need being created by marketing?Honest to goodness, I don’t agree with Satoshi’s original white paper because there is a bunch of things he didn’t think through for the end-user that is Joe+Jane Public and a bunch of things he didn’t think through for the end-user that is the developer either.I sit in AWS’s training workshops (it was on Connect, their customer service call management technology the other day) and, despite their resources, they also make mistakes on providing tools that developers need and would find easy to use.The point is this: whether it is AWS or Blockchain or the invention of numbers, we want there to be a purpose / market need / bottom line before the tool invention happens.Sometimes, though, that purpose / market need / bottom line emerges only AFTER the tool has been invented.Did Millennials need Snap glasses when they have a mobile phone?

  38. thinkdisruptive

    Companies do not create needs. They satisfy them. Sometimes an application accidentally solves a problem, but it didn’t create the problem or the desired outcome. My argument is that while historically, many needs have been addressed by accident, this is hugely inefficient and a waste of investor dollars. We didn’t know better ways, so this is how things were. The whole VC model is based on this notion that 90% of ideas/startup businesses will fail, which is why they need at least 10x payback on the winners, but we can improve those odds significantly — 75% should succeed if we approach things differently. This is huge, because it means more ideas are fundable, those that are funded are more likely to succeed, and the innovator doesn’t have to give up so much in risk premium (they get to keep more).Regarding blockchain, the answer is absolutely. The needs that it can address have always existed. Quoting Don Tapscott, who says this more eloquently than I can “blockchain is an incorruptible digital ledger of economic transactions that can be programmed to record not just financial transactions but virtually everything of value”, and it’s also transparent and distributed, which means safe, secure and open. Currencies have always had a problem with counterfeiting, or with the government deciding to pay it’s debt by printing money and skimming from everyone else who holds it. We have always had issues with certainty of ownership and creating paper trails of proof. With copyright, we’ve always had a problem with establishing whether copies are legal and paid for, and enforcing creator rights. I could go on, but blockchain did not create any of these problems that it has potential solutions for, anymore than hammers created the need for pounding nails into walls.Absence of positives does not demonstrate a negative — the fact that AWS isn’t perfect is irrelevant. Nobody is perfect, and sometimes even when you get the desired outcomes right, you fail at the implementation. The idea is not perfection, but raising the probability of creating something that solves a problem, perfectly or not.If you don’t desire to solve problems, why do you want to create a startup? If you do want to solve problems, then you are acknowledging that there are needs that a market-based solution can satisfy. And, what I’m saying is that the needs or useful outcomes are knowable, even if the solution and it’s implementation are uncertain.I can’t show how in this limited space, but my book does document this in detail. I don’t want to use Fred’s forum to post promotional links, but you can track it down through my profile if interestedRegarding Snap’s Spectacles, I don’t know. I don’t have a need for it, but I’m certain that it solves some problems for some people, or they wouldn’t pay for them. The bigger question is whether enough people desire the outcomes Spectacles uniquely offer that there is a profitable market — since I don’t profess any knowledge of this space, I can’t answer that, but it is a knowable answer (before the product was built).

  39. Twain Twain

    Shakespeare was not entirely right on this: “The world is a stage.”No, the world is an experiment. All of evolution is an experiment. Startups are experiments. Big companies are also experiments.We as individuals are also experiments. Our parents had no idea whether we would “fulfill their needs” but they went ahead with the experiment of becoming parents anyway.We experiment with everything: change our hairstyles, change our eating habits, change our clothing style, change our careers, change what we read/watch/buy etc.Do we need to have a need or purpose when we do that? Maybe and maybe it’s simple curiosity to see and experience something new in our experiments.

  40. thinkdisruptive

    You have solution and problem confused, as do most innovators when you ask them what problem they solve. We experiment with solutions, not with problems. If you want to experiment in unknown problem domains, then you are conducting science, not doing a startup company. There’s nothing wrong with pure research and discovery, but that is not about creating products, rather it’s about creating new knowledge.In all the “experiments” you describe, you are trying out implementations of solutions — i.e. trying to solve problems. In the case of your parents, the need to reproduce is programmed into us, and desire for a family and the bonds it creates are part of that — the need was always there. It’s a false conclusion to say that creating a new life is an experiment — it’s an answer to a problem. The fact that the outcome of that is uncertain doesn’t make it an experiment. Life isn’t deterministic. Sure, you could argue this philosophically, but we’re talking about innovation to create products, not religion or the meaning of life.

  41. Twain Twain

    Actually, creating the product happens symbiotically with creating knowledge that gets documented.It would be worthwhile signing up to Github and exploring the types of products that are being co-created along with knowledge there.

  42. Twain Twain

    Given that all of my product innovations have shipped to market and been adopted by end-users since I was 17 (in chemical, technology and banking sectors) and directly impacted bottom lines, I can clearly tell the difference between a solution and a problem.Blockchain as a set of technologies solve problems for one set of developers and not for others. They don’t solve problems that exist in image recognition AI, for example.It enables solutions for one set of Joe+Jane Public, e.g. Coinbase, and not for another set, e.g. Google search / Facebook (although it may do that in the future).You sound as if you are a business person with no hands-on experience of creating products yourself. Because if you had, as I have, you’d know that R&D directly leads to products and not just the creation of knowledge and some published paper that collects dust in some cabinet or gets archived on some server.

  43. thinkdisruptive

    I never said that new knowledge wasn’t created as products are developed. The point is, that’s not the purpose, rather a side-effect.Can we agree that startups are created to solve problems? If not, then there is no point to this discussion.

  44. Twain Twain

    What is your final point exactly? That these Blockchain startups are not solving a problem, a purpose or a market need?As I’ve made clear, they solve different problems for different sets of people.Just because right now they may not solve YOUR individual need/purpose does not mean they shouldn’t exist. They’re serving a use case that isn’t yours.

  45. thinkdisruptive

    If you care to, you can look up my background through my profile.No product addresses every need. That is a nonsense argument. At no time have I ever said that blockchain does not solve problems. I said at the outset that blockchain will not matter much if it remains an engineering thing that business people don’t apply to solving business problems. It has huge potential to do that, just as the internet did when it transcended engineering and science, and became a communications and connection tool for everyone.The last paragraph is a complete non sequitur that has nothing to do with anything I’ve said or implied.

  46. thinkdisruptive

    Nothing about any of this has anything to do with me personally. What I asked plainly is whether you agree that startups are created to solve problems. If you think they are created for some other reason, then there is no basis for further discussion, as we don’t agree on a fundamental premise. Not my problems — any problem.Regarding serving a need/solving a problem — quite the contrary. In fact, I’ve outlined several areas where blockchain has problem-solving potential. If you want to know what my final point is, go back to my first comment. The “final point” is clearly stated there. All the rest of this is drilling down into why that’s true.

  47. Twain Twain

    Business people already applying Blockchain to solving problems.…Do you think the engineers in Citi-Nasdaq just decided to launch that without business strategy approval?Look, I created e-Intelligence at UBS in my mid-20s. I saw an internal problem and need: information fragmentation, data silos. So I architected a global solution.I pitched it to the Global Head of eCommerce and he signed off on it immediately. I wrote the entire Technical Roadmap in a weekend and worked with engineers to have it built, integrated across the bank and up and running, under-budget and ahead of schedule.Now just last week I was at IoT World where I saw a Blockchain startup called BlockCypher which Tim Draper and a bunch of other SV luminaries invested in. I’d met them two years ago when they were just two techies. Now they have an entire stack and suite of services for IoT security and provenance and business folks were flocking around them.In any case, this exchange between us isn’t productive so not continuing with it.Peace.