How Is Blockchain Changing the World...for Good
How Is Blockchain Changing the World...for Good Photo by Hannah Busing on Unsplash

With crypto prices fluctuating up and down, news stories have abounded for years now around the rise and fall of blockchain, and what it means for the industry. What these articles fail to realize though is that blockchain is not just about token prices. In a way, this would be like saying that stock prices are the most important part of Fortune 500 companies. Sure, there is a lot of money in the market, but if you ignore the massive market, products/services, and industries around the globe, you’ve missed the point.

Blockchain is still growing up, and until it hits mass adoption, there is going to be a fundamental misunderstanding about what it is, what it can do, and how the technology can be applied to solve real world problems. To help with this, let’s look at some of the more amazing use cases that are being developed right now to make the world a better place. These aren’t far off aspirations shown on a company’s annual roadmap. These are use cases with a go-live plan within a few years, with working prototypes, and with customer feedback. Blockchain, like any innovative technology, can and will change the world, and here are some key use cases to watch for.

Blockchain Education

Listen, in order to take advantage of the opportunities on the blockchain, users first need to know the basics and how to use them. To this end, blockchain specific education is incredibly important to prime those communities that can benefit from the technology. Before you can release someone into the “DeFi Wild”, you first need to show them how to access a Web3 platform, how to interact with a smart contract, the basics of tokens/coins, and what actions can be taken.

While a number of platforms offer online tutorials or even full “courses” on the basics, Jelurida Africa, a branch of the Jelurida Swiss team behind the Ardor blockchain platform completed a full tour of Kenya, Rwanda, Uganda, Zambia, Malawi, Zimbabwe, and Tanzania.". The goal? To meet with public and private organizations and provide hands-on learning sessions so they can understand the core elements of blockchain, and can discover why Web3 has a purpose in Africa (and the rest of the world).

Banking

Once users are educated in the blockchain basics, what is next? While the options are many, one critical element of blockchain is decentralized finance. Especially for the surprisingly large number of individuals globally who are “unbanked”, meaning they do not have access to a financial institution. While mobile banking, and even text-based banking, brought huge benefits to the unbanked, there are inherent limits to what can be done. However, with DeFi there are countless platforms available for use, with a variety of features that can help connect people anywhere in the world to the global financial system. IOVLabs, the team behind the RSK platform, has announced an “Everyday DeFi” initiative that has a goal of bringing the first billion users to everyday decentralized finance. The goal of the program is to take away the inherent complexity of current DeFi solutions and provide ways for anyone to participate in DeFi. This includes not only the unbanked, but everyone in the global community, as DeFi has the power to cross political and geographical borders.

Commerce

Now that users around the world are educated and are able to access banking, what’s next? How about buying and selling? The area of commerce takes several forms, and both are being addressed with blockchain platforms. While several, including RSK, are creating marketplaces within a geographical area where users can buy and sell items (including physical items) and pay through DeFi, others are keeping things more digital in order to create a global marketplace. Both approaches are necessary for our communities. The global marketplaces, such as the one being developed by Grand Time, is embracing the gig economy in a way accessible to everyone. Specifically, their founders set up a GIG Marketplace that is great for those with work to be done, but even better for the billions who are looking for work. The platform’s stated goal is to address those people from underdeveloped and developing countries, where the majority of people live on less than $4 per day. Because of their platform, and their native token making payments seamless, the team aims to provide an income of $5 to $10 daily, with very active users earning up to $100-200 per day. This is potentially life changing, and the team’s goal is to take their earnings from the marketplace and place it in a community reward pool that will be used as rewards for various programs/events for their users. Other P2E, or Play-to-Earn blockchain platforms have made global headlines over the last two years, with proof that users can earn real money by performing tasks or even through completing challenges on Web3 gaming platforms.

Web3 Development

With targeted education, access, and earning potential, what else can be done to make a difference? For those who have leveraged the educational resources, have learned about blockchain in depth, and are ready to take the next step, there are blockchain development opportunities that take place on a truly decentralized platform, which is critical for many areas of the globe where a centralized system is not possible. The Orbs Network is a good example of this practice, focusing on driving out all “single points of failure” and ensuring their network is decentralized at each layer of the blockchain, reducing issues that could be caused by security, liability, and community-based problems. With this type of open, decentralized, and public blockchain infrastructure, anyone can participate and even develop their own smart contracts, platforms, and ecosystems.

New Innovation In Old Industries

With the global community given a number of impressive opportunities, it is clear that the technology (along with teams dedicated to serving those in need) is here and is making a difference. Forget about token prices; real lives are being impacted, improved, and transformed through the power of beneficial blockchain applications. And while this is heart-warming, it’s not the whole story. There are blockchain platforms that are simply creating solutions that are innovating industries that have improved little over the centuries. A prime example is SeaCoast, who has combined a number of advanced technologies to transform the maritime industry more than it has in perhaps centuries. They are using a combination of augmented reality, artificial intelligence, data analytics, and blockchain to connect solutions for many of the problems faced by ships traveling from port to port. Users can use their cameras to identify key coastal landmarks to provide navigation assistance, data on amenities/services/restaurants/POI for coastal cities they visit, securing a mooring spot in advance to ensure they can actually stop at a location, and use their blockchain and token to ensure an ecosystem that isn’t hindered by currency exchange or reliant on international banking.

The Future is Bright

Given all this, it’s safe to say that blockchain is here, its applications are countless, and it is truly helping the global community in many ways. Keep an eye out and you’ll be able to spot more and more use cases for blockchain in general, and ways that blockchain is genuinely changing the world…for good.

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