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There is a LOT of talk about "blockchain technology" going around these days. It seems like another "cloud", i.e. some vague concept that consultants can sell to CTOs who are afraid of appearing behind the technology curve. New clothes for the emperor.

Since bitcoin is the reference implementation of "blockchain technology" obviously all this interest rubs off. And since bitcoin at this point is all promise without much reality behind it (like a "pre-monetization" startup), it is a great vehicle for hype driven speculation, meaning that any price increase drives further speculation, until the next hard crash.

The Economist had an article of the magical wonders of the blockchain last week that kind of skimped on the downsides.

Why is it that the worst things always become the most popular? I mined my first bitcoin before it hit a dollar, so it's nothing against bitcoin, just as acknowledgement of the ridiculousness of the trend of cloud computing is nothing against the cloud itself. Why can't we get a fad that's reasonable for once?

I just don't get how people convert these specialized things that may help some companies sometimes into widespread hysteria, where every company feels like they have to go all in. Companies regularly take their basically-fine hardware offline so they can start renting the same or worse from Amazon, because then they can tell people that they're "in the cloud". I know one company that used to have all their stuff running on hardware and working pretty much fine. They switched to "the cloud" because they thought it was cool. They now pay Amazon the amount of money it'd take to re-buy all the hardware that used to run their site each and every month.

I should figure this out because if I can see one of these trends coming and time it right I could make a lot of money.

Maybe you should do some research before calling it a "vague concept that consultants can sell to CTOs".

It's the first distributed, decentralized ledger that successfully operates in the presence of malicious nodes. The white paper and reference implementation represent a fundamental breakthrough in computer science (a solution to the famous and previously unsolved Byzantine Generals problem).

Bitcoin is a big deal whether you want to realize it or not.

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