Late last year, around mid-December, the hype about Bitcoin was at its peak when the value of the cryptocurrency exceeded the $ 20,000 . News channels could no longer be around Bitcoin and the news reports about the cryptomania, enthusiastic or worrisome, flew almost every day. Was this the beginning of mass adoption? It was in any case clear that governments and banks started to interfere, France even suggested a G20 summit debate and that from several corners was warned to take into account a financial bubble when investing . If we label the interference of banks, governments and news media as mass adoption, then this way of adoption seems erratic, disorganized and certainly not sustainable. But how is it? Perhaps education can provide a solution here. Adoption of technology from a completely different angle teaches us that schools can play a key role.
A good example of how an emerging technology was embraced by getting a foothold in schools is Steve Job’s Apple II. In the early 1980s, not all classrooms were equipped with a computer. According to Job’s own calculations, a meager 10% of American schools had access to a computer. After Jobs had done the necessary lobbying, Apple II computers were finally donated to 9250 schools in California. You would think noble deed, but Jobs got it through the loose tax benefit for each other to donate $ 21 million worth of equipment for a cost of just $ 1 million. A million dollars is a lot of money, but it made sure that about 90% of the California schools had an Apple computer. Talk about mass adoption.
Can we walk a similar route with blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies ? Today there are a handful of universities that carry out research to blockchain and cryptocurrency or look at the possibilities to include blockchain in the study curriculum . With the latter, it is obviously the intention to prepare the next generation for a labor market that blockchain and cryptocurrency will be part of.
But is this enough? Is it not important that we even involve secondary and primary education in order to actually achieve mass adoption? My nephew of just 9 years old now knows better how my Iphone or any other smartphone works, so the step to knowledge about a cryptocurrency wallet and Bitcoin payments is not that great. Apart from the fact that these kids would benefit from learning about a new, emerging technology, it would be nice to learn that they also learn more about managing, saving and investing money; something that the current generation of millennials has not eaten enough of.
Perhaps we should involve as wide an audience as possible for actual mass adoption with the rise of blockchain and cryptocurrency. In that sense, we could learn something from the adoption of Apple computers in the 1980s. Slowly we are well on our way and the interest of universities is a development that is more than welcome. However, it may and may even need to be tackled more seriously to ensure that the next generation and the generations then embrace blockchain and cryptocurrency and get along with it.