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Talking about blockchain, touching on machine learning and fighting fake news

I hope the above story, even though didn’t mention anything specific about how blockchain is actually implemented in practice, made some concepts a bit more intuitive. Now, I would like to discuss a few topics relating to the blockchain as we know it, starting from its security.

Security

I’ve heard people say that we should be switching from keeping money in banks to blockchain because it is more secure. While that statement is probably overall more true than untrue there are two important caveats. Switching to blockchain in search for security only makes sense if you know what you’re doing and you don’t trust your bank.

To say that cryptocurrencies are more secure than banks is like saying that cars are more safe than airplanes.

True, if an airplane crashes the probability of survival is near-zero while it is much higher during a car crash. However, there is much more strict regulation around flying airplanes and it’s always a professional crew that is in charge while cars can be driven by anyone, there’s DUI, low quality vehicles or roads. As a result, statistics clearly show that cars are a much more dangerous means of transport than airplanes (source needed).

The bank way

If someone steals my credit card, they are still far from free access to all my money. If I also give them my PIN number, they might be able to withdraw a few tens of dollars before the bank gets suspicious of my anomalous behaviour and blocks the card. And even if that happens, customer service is likely to compensate for my losses for marketing reasons.

The blockchain way

On a blockchain, the experience is quite different. You are issued a private key which is a long string of characters which, if intercepted by someone, gives them instant and irrevocable access to all your money. You could distribute funds among several accounts but that adds to the hassle of maintaining and keeping all your private keys secure. What is more, if you loose or mess with...

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