Consensus 2018 Report (Continuous Updates Through May 17th)

Happy Wednesday! We are live!

**Consensus Short Statistics**

* 8,500+ attendees representing 100 countries and 2000 companies.
* 50% of attendees came from outside the U.S.
* 5 stages, with more rooms for tech demos and conference tables.

**[State of Blockchain](https://www.coindesk.com/research/state-blockchain-q1-2018/?slide=1)**

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**[Don Tapscott](http://dontapscott.com)**

-“We are entering a new era of trust”

-Generally remarked on the benefits of blockchain. Identified the 7 types of crypto assets (Currencies, Collectibles, Stablecoins, Natural Asset Tokens [Representing minerals, water], Utility Tokens, and Security Tokens.)

**[FedEx](https://www.coindesk.com/fedex-ceo-adopt-new-tech-like-blockchain-or-be-disrupted/)**

As I remarked in my comment earlier, FedEx is incredibly bullish on blockchain technology generally, but specifically in it’s applications for cross-border shipping and asset-tracking. As I learned, the definition of what constitutes a “coffee cup” differs from place to place. Using blockchain, Smith says, FedEx can protect against unforeseen obstacles at customs. “Information about the package is as important as the package itself,” he claims, further adding that the risk of experimenting with cryptocurrency is “de minimis” when compared to its alternative. During the session, FedEx unveiled “Trons”, bluetooth-enabled sensors integrated with blockchain [first announced in 2016](https://www.bizjournals.com/memphis/news/2016/09/22/fedexs-carter-talks-amazon-drones-and-innovation.html).

**[Jim Bullard, St. Louis Fed](https://www.cnbc.com/video/2018/05/14/st-louis-feds-james-bullard-talks-bitcoin-and-the-economy.html)**

Fantastic, informational lecture regarding the history of currency and how civilizations have reacted to various implementations. Generally, Bullard notes, humans want a uniform currency. He compared cryptos with state/provincial bank notes, citing the problems faced with exchange, regulation, and value verification. We haven’t yet realized this problem with cryptocurrencies since the market cap is relatively small.

Insightful statistics about and charts comparing GDP to the inflation/exchange rates of the Dollar/Yen. Surprisingly, the volatility charts look worse than Bitcoin. Catch all of these when the videos are released later this week.

Summarizing, Bullard claimed that there will be a plurality of coins sharing the ecosystem, each providing a specific use. The Federal Reserve will likely mint a fiat/cryptocurrency that represents a stable stock of U.S. dollars sometime in the mid term future.

**[Jed McCaleb](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jed_McCaleb)**

I spoke with Jed of the Stellar Foundation. This is a Bitcoin subreddit, so I’ll skip this part. You can find the full transcript of his thoughts [here](https://www.lumenauts.com/blog/jed-mccaleb-consensus-2018-coindesk-transcipt).

**[Charlie Lee](https://twitter.com/SatoshiLite?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor) and [David Schwarz](https://twitter.com/JoelKatz?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor)**

Both spoke on a panel about interoperability between Bitcoin, Litecoin, Ripple, etc. Developers better understand that most cryptocurrencies can interface as long as they use the same “hooks”. Schwartz compared this ideal system akin to TCP-IP; a minimal framework making as few technological demands as necessary.

An ecosystem with multiple coins utilizing different security protocols and consensus mechanisms is “good for Bitcoin”. In a theoretical world where power becomes abundant, what happens to PoW? We want the ability to migrate to a new protocol without upending the entire financial system. In a world where security is compromised, redundancy is critical.

Lee sees UI as the next significant hurdle. Not for speculators, but for mom-and-pop investors without much tech savvy.

**[TxTenna](https://www.coindesk.com/gotenna-bitcoin-wallet-mesh-network/)**

-Hardware to expand and facilitate mesh networks.

-Even if you own Bitcoin, transfer can be censored/inhibited through the network communicating the transaction to the blockchain.

-Using mesh networks, we bypass many of these constraints dealing directly with sovereign ISP’s.

-This is fantastic for Bitcoin users in 3rd world countries/those with oppressive regimes. I will leave this to your imagination.

**[RSK](https://www.rsk.co/)**

-Smart contract platform on top of the Bitcoin protocol.

-Ecosystem challenges (Tx costs, security, scalability)

-Tx cost is $0.035

– +10% hashing power

-Up to 100 tps.

-Next

-Payment channels (Lumino)

-Predicability (Fiat-based fees)

-Decentralization (BTC and RSK full-node rewards)

-Interoperability (inter-blockchain integration)

I’m sorry if you find this post lacking/off topic. Attempted to refine down to only what might be relevant to a Bitcoin trader. Even if Bitcoin isn’t specifically mentioned, many of these innovations/philosophies will apply to the crypto space generally and, thus, to Bitcoin.

It’s already the end of Day 2 and I’m finishing the write-up for D1. I’ll compile D2 and D3 for brevity’s sake. Most of this news is now relatively (a day) old.

Thanks for your attention and help supporting the crypto revolution.

P.S. “Where is my Consensus boost!? I thought BTC should be $10k by now!”

Historically, the Consensus Boost happens several weeks after the event, likely as news disseminates.

**OH FUCK**

**I FORGOT**

[Joseph Lubin bets BlockChain Capital’s Jimmy Song, “any amount of Bitcoin” that blockchain will have widespread enterprise adoption within 5 years](https://www.coindesk.com/lubin-song-wager-bitcoin-blockchain-consensus/)

**Day 2**

Will try an update. Sitting through, eToro will be opening business in the United States, launching a wallet shortly after. [Users can view successful traders’ profiles and subscribe to their trades, copying them second-by-second.](https://www.coindesk.com/social-investing-platform-etoro-expanding-crypto-trading-to-us/)

**[Circle announces a USD stablecoin and crypto wallet](https://www.coindesk.com/110-million-circle-series-e-bitcoin-unicorn/).**

**[HTC announces a crypto phone](https://www.coindesk.com/htc-plans-ship-blockchain-phone-year/).**

**[Deloitte releases preview of cryptocurrency report, shows majority of companies pursuing blockchain.](https://www.coindesk.com/deloitte-3-out-of-4-big-companies-see-compelling-case-for-blockchain/)**

-“But this is just blockchain”. Yes, and a rising tide lifts all ships.

**[The Magical Crypto Friends Live From Consensus. Warning, shitty audio.](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W_iOz-cLsyA)**

-Founders of several currencies (Litecoin, Monero) discuss Buffett, Bitcoin, and other BS. 56 minute duration. For the hardcore.

**Day 3**

Alright!

**Ledger**

-Announcing a consortium for investors/institutions who manage multiple accounts. Today, Ledger Nano S is really only useful to the individual owner.

-Called, “Komino”? (Japanese Script).

-Isn’t this compromising the dream of Satoshi? Speaker thinks no. The dream is that everyone can use Bitcoin as they see fit. Large companies can have positions in Bitcoin without changing the life of crypto maximalists who can still use cryptocurrencies.

-Bankers have the right to “Go full Moon and lambos”.

**Polymath**

-The next big wave in crypto are Security Tokens.

-Real estate, equity in companies.

-Amongst crypto VC founders, Security Tokens will comprise 50-90% of the crypto market in the coming years. Currently, the share is approximately 1%.

-You can create a security token **right now**. Log on [here](https://www.polymath.network) and try the demo.

-First blockchain telegram to reach 50,000 users.

-Integrating with tZero. All new securities should have liquidity out of the box.

-ST-20. A security token standard designed to ameliorate many of the issues with fragmented ICO’s.

-Launching a ST Venture Fund, “Polymath Capital”.

-New CoinMarketCap competitor. “Tokens.com”. Perhaps they’ll finally force some innovation on the CMC side.

-Polymath 2.0 TestNet now live.

**BlockStack**

-Internet 3.0 is here. Mesh networks, decentralized data, crypto assets. We are not storing data with companies anymore, we are personally responsible. One day, we will have a universal ID that removes the need for a rolodex of passwords, usernames, and security questions.

-BlockStack members advise on Silicon Valley. Fun fact.

-Infrastructure and speculative investment grew from less than $100B in January, to $100B in May, and, finally, over $600B by November.

-Sounds like a dApp talk. They’re making iTunes for dApps. I’ll come back when he says, “Bitcoin”.

**[Jack Dorsey](https://www.cnbc.com/2018/03/25/bitcoin-will-eventually-be-the-single-global-currency-twitters-jack-dorsey.html) and [Elizabeth Stark](https://www.cdotrends.com/story/13761/how-lightning-network-can-solve-bitcoin-woes)**

-Jack first heard of Bitcoin in St. Louis via a group of Cypherpunks.

-Appreciated the complexity of code, but didn’t realize the potential just yet.

-Met some engineers who wanted to build a Bitcoin solution for Square. Buyers/sellers could accept Bitcoin without knowing they were using Bitcoin.

-Community “felt like Usenet” as it developed between 2014 and 2017. “Felt electric”.

-Claimed Square’s strengths are speed and simplicity. Credit cards are complex and often emotional. Talking about the [Cash](https://cash.me/login) app, the goal is to revisit the coffee purchase of old and make it feasible using Bitcoin.

-“We have evidence to show people are using this as their primary spending account, their primary bank account, and, in some cases, their *only* bank account.”

-“We have people that have been blocked from entering the financial industry.” Even merchants had problems accepting payments. “Reaching the underserved, reaching the unbanked”, he says, feels good.

-On Square adopting Bitcoin. “It was certainly contentious within our company.” “I guess we always take the mindset that we can’t wait for things to happen to us…If we want responsible uses…then we have to make that happen, we have to do the work to educate regulators, educate the SEC, show that we can provide *more* access to *more* people…give people a chance to participate in the economy…still a lot of disagreements and fights, but that’s where the magic happens. We really push through, and this tested us. There was certainly a spotlight on us because of that fact, but there are a lot of unknowns. We ran towards them.”

-On the future, the potential of Bitcoin. “The internet deserves a native currency. It will have a native currency. I don’t know if it will be Bitcoin or not, but I hope it will be. I appreciate the technology so much; the principles behind it. Using the guide that the Internet will have a global currency…it’s going to happen. As a company, as individuals, we need to learn how to make that happen. The biggest thing I worry about as a company is there is so much openness within the community, I hope nothing corporate will come in and threaten it.” Protecting the open-source nature of the work. “This is a discussion I have a lot with Mike and the team. No one company or corporation should own this. This is the main question of everyone I meet in the community. We have a completely open mindset to ensure this remains a completely open platform. Let’s not wait for it to happen. Let’s do our part to encourage it to be used in healthy ways and ensure that everyone has access to it. If we ever go astray **call us out**. We can’t do any of this without the technology being strong and available to everyone.”

-“Obviously we are a centralized organization that benefits from decentralization. It’s a theme of conversation within our organization and we’re looking to decentralize our workforce. Cash is an interesting application in our company.” Going to Australia next week to check in with the local team there. They are agnostic on what locale partners decide to nest in.

-Large corporate HQ’s like Twitter and Square, “are a thing of the past”. People will be able to work from wherever they please.

-“Nobody is going to a bank for a $6,000 loan. They’re going to friends and family.” They can all be served with this technology.

-Hesitates to make articulated 5-10 year predictions, prefers patience and iterating as each year develops. “We want to go back to the original idea of being able to purchase a coffee with it. That’s why we’re working with you. Whatever it takes to get there, we’re going to try and make it happen.” Encouraging more access to the financial space is the primary objective of the Square organization.

-“Over the past two years since we’ve really pushed our way into this, I’ve felt that electricity”

-Elizabeth Stark feels like she’s living through the mid-90’s again, “In a positive way”.

-Stark is an optimist. “Really seeing the value behind the means of transacting without a middle party.” It wasn’t until Satoshi’s whitepaper did we have the means to build a solution to this problem.

-“Our goal with Lightning is to enable an application layer like the Internet”. -Stark

-On potential, compelling apps built on Bitcoin. “As I said, there’s just so much to trust, to identity, to decentralizing almost everything we use today in a centralized way. We get the power of the crowd, the ability to see so many amazing perspectives and opinions to make our answers much better. I don’t think about that as much as I think about what we need to focus on.”

-On what they need to focus on. “There’s a desire for more. There’s definitely an incentive to hold the technology and encourage a mindset of saving rather than spending. But making it easier to spend, easier to transact, easier to do the everyday is what we need to focus on. We aren’t necessarily going to be the company that comes up with the right frameworks or technologies, but I’m confident we’ll be part of facilitating the process.”

-The ultimate relationship with a regulator is that of education, Dorsey claims.

-On becomng a global company. “If we were ever able to use it as a payment mechanism today, we could release it all over the world opposed to the 5 markets we’re in today. With each market, we have to find a banking partner, work through the regulatory.” Only way to accept credit cards in Japan involved a 15-minute interview with an official. There is a large amount of legacy legislation that hampers adoption.

-On the next steps of democratizing finance. “Hardest part is continuing this conversation…certainly the regulatory bodies around the world, the banks…” Slowly but surely, Square is converting Goldman Sach’s-types, showing them the reasons behind the movement. Having, “healthy discussions at the board level.”

-On advice getting started in the industry. “Follow the conversation on Twitter, first and foremost. (laughter) And not just follow.” When he first followed the industry, he felt like he had nothing to contribute. Join the conversation, express a point of view. “So many people fear expressing an opinion…instead of treating it like a conversation”. “While you follow these conversations–jump in. People are going to think you’re weird, they’ll disagree with you, but you’ll sharpen your opinions…find where they resonate.” Pursue success from there.

**BCash**

I visited the BCash table and asked the representative to respond to claims that the company was causing label confusion amongst BTC and BCH. She locked up, asked if I was press, and, “was not at liberty to discuss the topic”.

Scam. Scam. Scam. Did I say scam?

**That’s it for Bitcoin! Thanks for playing Consensus 2018!**

I have tons of photos to upload, which I’ll share in the Daily General Discussion as they come online.



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