Gavin Andresen, Chief Scientist at Bitcoin Foundation, Answered Everyone on AMA Reddit

Gavin Andersen answered on a series of questions related to bitcoin at the Ask Me Anything session.

Photo: cassowarytales

Photo: cassowarytales

Bitcoin Foundation Chief Scientist, Gavin Andersen, took part in Ask me Anything session on Reddit on Tuesday. The discussion covered a lot of topics related to bitcoin.

Andersen told about his developments in the bitcoin sector, including nine Bitcoin Improvement Protocols (BIPS) and multi-signature transaction support.

During the session, he mostly spoke on the future of cryptocurrency and told what difficulties he sees in the bitcoin market. Additionally, he expressed his opinion on how to facilitate further adoption of digital currency.

Here some questions related to the promotion of bitcoin and its acceptance by businesses.

What is in your opinion the biggest obstacle for bitcoin at this moment? What do you think would be the most important factor in bringing bitcoin to the masses? Where do you see bitcoin is five years?

Obstacle/factor: getting to where people are earning bitcoin directly, instead of having to jump through some hoop to trade the currency that they earn for BTC.

Bitcoin in five years: uhhh…. 2019…. I left my crystal ball in my other coat pocket. I think it’ll either disappear and become an under-the-covers ledger system that Joe-ordinary-consumer never sees. Or it will be the de-facto currency of the Internet (prices still quoted in your local currency, but payment in bitcoin always accepted).

What can we as a community do to encourage Bitcoin-based businesses to contribute more resources to supporting the network?

How do you encourage businesses to do anything? Do business with businesses that reflect your values, and avoid ones that don’t….

How would you recommend that someone like myself – who understands the Blockchain and Bitcoin but has zero programming ability – become involved?

I guess my advice would be to act like an entrepreneur– try lots of things, expect most of them to fail, but keep your eyes open for opportunities.

What can the average noobie do to help spread adoption of this fantastic technology?

Use it. Don’t be too pushy about talking about it, but do let people know that you’re enthusiastic about it. Think about who you’re talking to, and tailor your message to what you know they care about (low fees? put bankers out of business? take control of your own finances?)

Andersen was also asked about the bitcoin projects he liked.

What are some of the most exciting code implementations/projects/companies that you’ve been keeping an eye on?

I’m excited about the Trezor (and hope the Mycelium people get their hardware wallet working soon). And watching the spread of bitcoin ATMs, because getting BTC is still a bottleneck for ordinary people.

Andersen also revealed his concerns on the future of bitcoin and its possible ban.

What are you currently most excited about with regards to bitcoin development? And, conversely, what are you currently most worried about?

I’m most excited about all of the non-currency uses of the block chain’s ledger-ordering ability. I have no idea which ones will turn out to be successful, but I’m glad all of that experimenting is happening. I’m most worried about scalability.

If a country were to “ban” Bitcoin, how could that be enforced? Is it possible for bitcoin internet traffic be blocked at the ISP level (or any other)?

It would be enforced the same way banning any activity a government doesn’t like is enforced, with fines and jail sentences for anybody found doing the thing they don’t like. They would probably start by making it very difficult to exchange bitcoin for the national currency via banks.

Unencrypted bitcoin traffic would be pretty easy to block at the ISP level, but it is also pretty easy to tunnel it through Tor, which is harder to block. But talk to the Tor folks about that, they know a whole lot more about blocking internet protocols than I do.

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