If predicting the future is challenging, then predicting the future implications of general purpose technology is nearly impossible.
We’re going to try anyways.
However, getting all the details right is not the goal. Instead, the exercise of trying to predict the future opens your mind to new and potentially interesting ideas.
Personally, I agree with Naval Ravikant’s sentiment on the Unchained Podcast: predicting the long-term outcome is easier than the short-term.
I can see a long-term future that looks something like this…
We’re heading towards a more decentralized world. Blockchain (or the future evolution) and cryptocurrencies will be used by most businesses, most people, and, eventually, most governments.
This technology (decentralized consensus) will underlie many of our future systems as we’ve created a fundamentally new way to establish trust globally, leading to great leaps in our social scalability.
Technology by its nature is morally neutral, which means blockchain has the tremendous power to both help and hurt our future society. Hopefully when the dust settles, this revolution leads to a less violent, more free, open world.
Predicting on a shorter timescale (let’s say by 2020) presents unique challenges. The shorter we make our timescale, the harder it becomes to predict the future state. Short term, we’re exposed to temporary risks that will not necessarily matter in the inevitable long term, such as temporary technology setbacks, geo-political events, risks of individual leaders, etc.
In this article we’re going to examine the future on a short-term basis, and predict which projects will be in the top 10 by market cap in 2020.Predicting Market Dominance by 2020
I’m going to stack rank the top 10, but don’t get hung up with the order. Let’s not waste time debating the relative position of any project on this list.
Without future ado, here are my predictions for...