Bitcoin-ing society

For those that live under a rock, Bitcoin is a cryptocurrency. What’s a cryptocurrency (other then evil sounding, MUUHUUHAHHAAAA)? Good question, but you better learn quick because we’re going to spell out how we’ll be doing it to society.

Uhh what?

Bitcoin is a distributed network that processes payments. This allows for a flattening of the traditional payment certification infrastructure. It’s also a great example of Information Altruism at work and meets the four factors when it can be applied to a context.

  • Currency: Digital Dollar overhead — eliminate overhead
  • PowerFlow: Centralization — attack with decentralization
  • Values: Huge corporations — the individual
  • Flag in Ground: Bitcoin logo and a community that no one will claim ownership of who actually created it.

Bitcoin is an excellent example of the direction society is heading; flat, structureless and hyper-connected. Internet of things (IoT) is also going this route and is something people will start to experience every day without realizing it. Every device on the planet will be web connected and (the good ones) autonomous and distributed. Calling home as needed but doing what’s needed to keep their Actant network stable. This is the direction we are pressing forward on as well.

How do managers, governments and C levels prepare for this world? Start the process of flattening by choice, or be bowled over by the unstoppable march of technology. Technology spits in the face of human hierarchies. It does not require approval, it does not require consensus though it often allows for it; it forms the optimal solution and liberates members involved. True digital freedom and the best options emerging remove the needs for endless meetings seeking consensus among large groups (when it’s not even possible in small).

Especially in IT organizations or those built on advanced technology, it is important to recall that people align with the workflows they are placed within. If technology cannot pass an XML statement from point A to B (and it is required to do business), jobs will be created as they have a need filled. If you require HTML to be produced to do your job, then HTML workers will be employed.

But if you utilize web-services and sufficiently advanced replacements for HTML, you no longer need data entry and you no longer need HTML jockeys. It is critical that employees that work within fields that are easily automate-able (data entry, booking, anything with standard process and routine that interface with technology) be prepared to find new work within the next 5 to 10 years. In the future, you either align with distributed, flat and Bitcoin like computer networks or you succumb to them. Start a gradual collapse now, or be collapsed.

It’s not all Bad

A misconception I get a lot is that when I say automation and elimination of tasks means we eliminate workers. Much like when we talk about elimination of hierarchy, we’re not talking eliminating jobs, we’re talking graceful restructuring of jobs. Follow the Two Pizza rule; smaller teams, more focused tasks, less reporting order, less coordination and meetings, more productivity. NEW work, not elimination of work. Out of the tedium and into increasingly more meaningful work.

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