This is an editorial from the point of view of Ram, a twenty-year-old student, soldier, and storyteller.
Your little girl is playing with her laptop and she screams, “Wow!” and “Oh!” You wonder what is going on. Is it a cartoon? Is it an anime? Why is she so excited?
As I, a twenty-year-old, write this in Singapore, about 15,000 won Active Bitcoin nodes are estimated to be running worldwide. These nodes host part/full Bitcoin database.
With 15,000 computers hosting the same database around the world, constantly transmitting new transactions and new blocks to each other, it is practically impossible for any player to find and change the record. about what happened.
But when talking about the future of Bitcoin as a decentralized currency, Elon Musk said this:
I agree with Elon. But let me clarify.
Elon is referring to an authenticator button, it’s pretty simple to set up.
- Mining nodes and serving validator nodes different functions. (TLDR: mining nodes consume power to create “blocks” of data, validating nodes check if the information in those blocks is correct. Nowadays, mining nodes are called miners. mining, while validating nodes are simply called nodes.) Both contribute to decentralization.
- Setting up a confirm button won’t burn your house down due to high electricity usage.
- It’s really easy and doesn’t require technical expertise.
- In fact, it only costs ~ 10 cents every day from electricity.
- For now, you need less 7GB the storage space for setting up a validator node has been reduced (where you hold only part of the Bitcoin transaction database, but still contribute to decentralization).
Unfortunately, the average person is not aware of the above.
However, Bitcoin is still the most decentralized cryptocurrency on the planet. 15,000 nodes in the crypto landscape is a great thing, and proof of Bitcoin’s decentralization has been demonstrated in block wars.
But let’s frame the context differently. End 5,000,000,000 VND Everyone has access to the internet today. Suddenly, 15,000 buttons look very small. More than 15,000 people can have computers with 7GB to spare. Many people may even have an old laptop lying in the garage!
In order for Bitcoin to gain wider and faster adoption in the future, its decentralization must be constantly emphasized. One way to do this is to incentivize people who regularly run Bitcoin validator nodes.
We don’t talk enough about this today.
Gain UI and UI improvements via this button
Even in exchange and payment applications, The UI and UX are said to be dropped. When it comes to buttons, the discussion of user interface and user interface is practically non-existent.
Remember: the largest company in the world today has achieved its position by constantly focusing on UI and UX. That company’s market capitalization is currently about six times larger than Bitcoin.
Bitcoin may not be a company, but the same principle applies. It aggregates to make things more intuitive.
When it comes to setting up a validator button, make things simpler. And simpler. And simpler. Installing Bitcoin Core is like installing a chrome extension. Or an app from Google Play. And suddenly, we’ll have people realize: “Hey, this button is really simple!”
Let me be clear: setting up a validator button is already simple. But simplicity and perceived simplicity are different things. Today, perceived simplicity requires effort.
Next, let’s talk about how it feels to run a validator node.
Join block discovery sites.
Technically, any of this information can be found on any fully validator node. It is just less intuitive and requires some technical knowledge. The average Joe won’t absorb that knowledge.
So let’s improve UI and user experience. Superimpose the look and feel of the block explorer sites on top of the node program. Go one step further. Allows users to see how many nodes they are transmitting data to, how many blocks they have helped validate so far, any temporary chain splits. Simpler. More interaction. And no effort. I am sure there will be a lot of ideas about creating a cool user interface and experience based on blockchain.
And UI and UX are not just important for enhancing hierarchy. They can change the way people use Bitcoin.
To illustrate, here’s what I imagine a typical person’s path to Bitcoin would be:
Heard about cryptocurrencies as a way to earn fiat money → join altcoins → participate in Bitcoin → interested in Bitcoin → go down the hole → believe in Bitcoin → set up a validator node.
This path is just one of many. But here’s my take: most of the time, setting up a node goes pretty so late.
Here’s what an improved and intuitive button UI and UX could change that path to:
Heard about crypto as a way to generate fiat currency → decided to install Bitcoin validator node for crypto value proposition → learn through interaction with blockchain → maybe even have fun → interested in Bitcoin → trust in Bitcoin → tell more people to install a validator node → spread the word; process loops.
A validator node is an open invitation from Bitcoin to new people, there is no need to take the risk. Improvements in user interface and user experience will market it as such. They will propagate learning through interaction with the Bitcoin network. Education will come directly from the blockchain. Videos and articles, after all, can only do so much!
Here are some other UI and UX benefits:
- It attracts non-technical people to Bitcoin. That’s right, Bitcoin is the most decentralized cryptocurrency on the planet. But the people running validator nodes are still a limited group largely drawn from the tech and financial communities. Please also engage people from other communities. One immediate thought was that NFT designers turned to work on Bitcoin’s UI and UX.
- They reduce the risk inherent from centralized block discovery sites.
- This will publicize Bitcoin, the payment system. You can argue about Bitcoin in terms of currency, but Bitcoin’s payment system is extremely difficult to disprove, even through the lens of mainstream economics.
At this point, it is worth mentioning that increasing decentralization can also bring certain disadvantages. Typical democratic problems. Decentralization among technologists also has its advantages. But that’s another discussion.
Bottom line is: we need to talk more about this! Much of the world is still deeply misunderstood about Bitcoin. The fact that the “Bitcoin is bad for the climate” argument has received so much traction is painful evidence. And even our Bitcoiners, all at very different depths of rabbit hole, could benefit from easier interactions with the blockchain.
So talk about this in the Telegram, Your Word and of course, on Twitter. Is it feasible? Does it make sense? Was it a waste of time? Is it actively being worked on?
Let’s go back to the story from the beginning of this section:
Your little girl is playing with her laptop and she screams “Wow!” and “Oh!” You go through and see a new block added to the chain of blocks before it, in real time. You see one string becoming two, until the upper chain gets longer and longer and the lower chain disappears into flames. Your girl claps her hands.
Now, people, is a vision worth pursuing.
This is a post by Ram. The opinions expressed are entirely their own and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of BTC Inc or Bitcoin Magazine.