Investor Chris Dixon On Blockchain: “Better To Fight The Next War Than Refloat The Last”br>
Chris Dixon, the American Internet entrepreneur and investor who, since 2013, is general partner of the venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz, expressed in an extensive interview the idea that blockchain technology’s arrival will end the power of companies like Facebook, Google or Apple.
An investor and blockchain enthusiast for years, Dixon today says the Internet “is much more like Disneyland.”
“If I’m building a restaurant at Disneyland and Disneyland thinks I’m making too much money, they can raise the rent or change the rules. That’s what they’re building on Facebook or Google and Apple right now. We live on this kind of Disneyland Internet, and I do not think that’s good for a lot of reasons,”he said.
The answer, for him, is blockchain and its decentralized nature. This technology, says Dixon, can provide much richer and more advanced protocols. “It has the best characteristics because they are governed in a decentralized way, and in a way that the rules are fixed and people can build on them and invest in them and know that the rules will not change. But they have a more advanced functionality than the protocols. of the Internet era,” he said in an interview with Medium.
He also believes that “what the smartest people will do on weekends is what everyone else will do at work in 10 years.”
Therefore, when asked in what areas he plans to invest, he explained that he will do so in two categories: infrastructure and applications.
“The infrastructure is, basically, the blockchain layer. Bitcoin would be in that category. In ethereum. The competitors of bitcoin, like Zcash and Monero. It is very difficult to see bitcoin being displaced, only by the impulse of the brand and the level of confidence. It has been around for ten years. The two most viable replacements are probably Zcash and Monero. They are bitcoin competitors that have privacy features,” he said.
In this regard, he argued that one of the things commonly misunderstood about bitcoin is that people think it is anonymous. Dixon said that “is the opposite of anonymity” because it is “all public.”
“If you’re Venezuelan and you’re trying to outwit the draconian tyrannical government, bitcoin could be a really bad solution,” he said.
Future blockchain applications
Each technology brings with it a new set of applications that take advantage of the new tool. “The personal computer was new because it could be placed on a desk. This computer [holding his mobile phone] was the first computer you could take everywhere. It has a camera, a GPS, and then people came up with Snapchat, Uber, Lyft and Instagram. Every time a new set of applications appears, they take advantage of the new capabilities of that computer,” he said.
Currently, there are all kinds of interesting things happening in terms of applications. For example, apps are being created on the financial side, in the gaming world, and others around what are known as non-fungible tokens [such as Cryptokitties], which is a kind of new way of thinking about virtual goods. “There are a lot of things that happen, people are taking real-world assets and putting versions of them in blockchain,” he added.
Surprisingly, for the tycoon, paying for a cup of coffee is probably “the least interesting application for the cryptocurrency,” since that has already been solved quite well.
The most interesting applications on blockchain will come on the other hand: “Between a billion and two billion people have smartphones, but no bank accounts, not even an official identity.”
He also made a special mention for applications related to virtual goods: “I think we are going to see a lot of experimentation. Many people think that you could redesign many central Internet services.” Filecoin is an interesting project in which they try to redesign storage using blockchain, creating [A kind of] Airbnb for storage.
However, when asked if it is feasible to recreate Facebook, but this time based on blockchain, he replied: “I think it is better to fight the next war than to refloat the last war. Facebook could remain Facebook, Google could still be Google. But there will be a new set of services integrated in blockchain.”
ICOs are like the Internet in the 90s
The initial coin offering (ICO) has been associated many times with cyber thefts. For Dixon, there has been “bad behavior” in this environment, and that behavior has led some people to think that the entire space is full of scams. “I would like to compare it with the Internet of the 90s, where you had a lot of bad companies and a lot of nonsense. But you also had Google and Amazon. In the end, it was a very, very important technology movement.”
Finally, in relation to the regulation on cryptocurrencies, he said that they will be taken as “commodities” and not as values.