If your familiarity with Bitcoin and Blockchain is limited to having heard about the trial of Silk Road’s Ross Ulbricht, you can be forgiven — but your knowledge is out of date. Today, Bitcoin and especially Blockchain are moving into the mainstream, with governments and financial institutions launching experiments and prototypes to understand how they can take advantage of the unique characteristics of the technology.
The obvious question is why they’re all so interested in blockchain. The answers vary, naturally, but they seem drawn by two opportunities: cost reduction and efficiency, and innovation. While the outcomes can be very different — after all, cost reduction and efficiency typically focus on improving the as-is state of affairs while innovation disrupts or displaces the existing order of things.
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