The Case for (Crypto) Optimism
This week’s blog post is mostly a recommendation to read another blog post: Kevin Kelly’s The Case for Optimism.
Kevin Kelly is a well-known writer, futurist, and internet pioneer. His blog post elucidates many of the reasons that drew me to the blockchain world even though it never explicitly mentions blockchain/crypto/web3.
I won’t rehash the full article, but I do want to highlight a few lines of his reasoning that are important to the ethos of the Geo Web project and applicable broadly to the opportunities that the crypto/blockchain space creates.
- “Civilization requires trust; trust requires optimism; civilization requires optimism.” Agreed, but I’d add: “Trust begets optimism.” Blockchains are at their best as coordination tools that give people the freedom to be more optimistic. The trust guarantees that we can create with cryptography, blockchains, smart contracts, etc. are the underlying reason that many in this space feel safe to be so optimistic.
- In the traditional world, pretty much everyone is pessimistic about paying taxes. In the crypto world, many are optimistic about funding public goods. The difference is partially just branding, but the difference in mindset will lead to real differences in results over time if this optimism thesis is correct. The Geo Web’s partial common ownership system puts this idea into practice.
- “Optimism is not utopian. It’s protopian -- a slow march toward incremental betterment.” The crypto space has plenty of problems: hyper speculation, scams, association with cybercrimes, etc., but it’s a mistake to simply dismiss the deeper positive impacts it already has had and can have over the long term. In my optimistic perspective, crypto lays tracks for solving ever bigger challenges.
- “Civilization is a worthy goal to aim for. To build a better civilization, optimism is the most rational, realistic and helpful stance to take right now. These reasons for optimism are so strong that I believe we have a moral duty to be as optimistic as we can.” That’s part of Kevin’s closing paragraph, and I couldn’t have said it better myself.
- Lots of ETH L2 work: migration to Hardhat (https://github.com/Geo-Web-Project/core-contracts/pull/18), Arbitrum Rinkeby testnet (https://github.com/Geo-Web-Project/cadastre/pull/70), & a corresponding Rinkeby Subgraph (https://github.com/Geo-Web-Project/geo-web-subgraph/pull/12).
- We fixed some IPFS pinning/Filecoin archive issues on the Cadastre (https://github.com/Geo-Web-Project/cadastre/pull/69).
- We updated the ethers.js version used on the Cadastre so transactions actually work :) (https://github.com/Geo-Web-Project/cadastre/pull/67).
- L2 Autumn Pt. 1: The Arbitrum One mainnet is live and Offchain Labs raised a boatload of money to continue scaling Ethereum.
- L2 Autumn Pt. 2: Matter Labs provided a long awaited update on zkSync 2.0. They’re still at least a couple weeks away from a limited testnet, but we’re definitely still excited to get our hands on a ZK L2 rollup.
- Gitcoin Grant Round 11 starts next week Wednesday, September 8th.
- More L2 exploration
- Profiles on the Cadastre