Coindesk’s Bauerle Sees Adoption As Key
Speaking to CNBC on July 9, 2018, Coindesk’s research lead Nolan Bauerle has joined the current debate on the need for digital coin adoption. Many prominent voices – notably from the digital asset investment sector – have been calling for greater user adoption to entrench cryptocurrency as a phenomenon.
Bauerle agrees that real value will emerge now that digital coins have suffered their novelty enough. “What happened in December  was just speculation going long on the asset,” he said. “Now that we’re able to be sure, now that all the future contracts are out there, we [see] a healthy change in the pricing.”
He points to a new acronym – BIDL, which stands for “building infrastructure for dear life” – that is replacing HODL thinking. Bauerle is the latest in a string of industry voices stating the obvious: bitcoin and others need real-world transactional currency application.
Growing Pains Not Over Yet
Referring to the last few crypto years, Bauerle noted that, at that stage, the digital coin universe’s Infrastructure was still not built. Speaking in sure tones, he expressed that as stressful as corrections and other dark inputs may have been, going forward the “whole infrastructure will be built from the failures and the mischief of people like Facebook and Google.” Bauerle was referring to extreme virtual currency volatility, the bitcoin price’s plummet and various stances for or against by various huge and impactful corporations.
Regulatory activity was also a real fear six months ago, yet global legislation has mostly lent authenticity to digital coins. Exchanges are now established and building histories as a host of peripheral necessities catch up with user demand.
While Bauerle was not bemoaning speculation in bitcoin, he did echo the now-obvious imperative next step: global adoption. The greater the use of bitcoin, the more real speculation can be, and users are starting to concur that the simple mathematics of user application is the needed impetus for a new bitcoin reality to emerge.
“We haven’t arrived at that point [of global, daily use]. It’s all been speculation,” Bauerle observed. While he felt that previous years and especially 2017 were “great, a really neat run,” he insists that bitcoin is “much healthier now that people can short it.”
Bitcoin Needs Dollar Application, Not Dollar Value
On the downside, Bauerle rhetorically asked, “Who do you think is using it [bitcoin]? Really no one, and that’s the problem!” He said that the only real use case for bitcoin besides its intrinsic value is currently as a commodity. He further noted that bitcoin “is really behaving like a reserve currency for an alternative financial system, not just one asset, and it’s only really affecting early stage funding.”
On the upside, Bauerle pointed to a now-established first tier of cryptocurrency infrastructure and behavior. With the whole concept of smart contracts “already disrupting the fintech world,” he noted the advent of “blending.”
VC is entering liquid markets and “all kinds of stuff that didn’t exist before.” When asked about how to separate bitcoin out from blockchain technology, Bauerle felt that it’s entirely possible, but probably irrelevant. He did say that “the development of the tech has not stopped because bitcoin has gone down.” He also said that “None of this would be possible [massive blockchain adoption] if it wasn’t for what bitcoin has done before.”
“People have been able to separate them for a while now,” Bauerle noted, “but that doesn’t erase the behavior of bitcoin. Bitcoin is a unique element to this ecosystem.” In a nutshell, industry observers are now almost unanimous that investing in cryptocurrency is investing in the future, and it all hinges on human capital. User adoption. Massive global uptake of bitcoin as a genuine daily currency.
Bitcoin Leads Into A Cryptographic Future
Cryptocurrency still faces hostility from governments and big business. China’s ban remains, and India has banned accepting bitcoin as payment. Facebook has taken to blocking bitcoin ads and payment processors like Visa and MasterCard term bitcoin transactions “cash advances” as opposed to purchases, something that attracts higher fees.
In spite of this, Bauerle sees the entrenchment of digital coins as a growing phenomenon.
“People now see cryptocurrencies, something digital, as unique, uncopyable and unable to be counterfeited, and therefore physical property,” he said. He is confident that cryptocurrencies will persist in their mainstreaming over the coming decade. “
Great minds have been attracted to the cryptocurrency industry,” Bauerle noted. “The enthusiasm, intelligence and human capital is there to make it work.”