Ether’s Vitalik Buterin Regrets Using Nick Szabos’ Smart Contract Term, Likes ‘Persistent Scripts’


Vitalik Buterin Regrets Adopting The Name Smart Contract

Recently, on Twitter, Ethereum creator Vitalik Buterin admits:

“I quite regret adopting the term ‘smart contracts.’” In the tweet, he explains he should've called it “something more boring and technical.”

Vitalik’s tweet is a response to the account CleanApp, which was discussing the concept of “CryptoLaw.” In this thread, CleanApp details what they think of governance structures, and how digital smart contracts are having to deal with real-life implications. After smart contracts are mentioned, Vitalik chimes in to express his regret, saying he’d prefer if smart contracts were called “persistent scripts.”

Meanwhile, Ethereum associate, Vlad Zamfir, echoed Vitalik, though preferring the term “stored procedures” instead, which is up there with ‘persistent scripts,’ if our goal is boring.

“But I for one don’t regret the terminology, it has been a great learning opportunity for everyone,” Zamfir added.

Indeed, the term is likely to persist as it has become a buzzword on par with blockchain, governance, and other Pavlovian words that can be found in almost every whitepaper today.

Notably, the term ‘smart contracts’ itself, however, was coined in 1994 by Nick Szabo, an American computer scientist and Bitcoin pioneer who invented a virtual currency called “Bit Gold” in 1998, fully 10 years before the invention of Bitcoin.

Szabo defined ‘smart contracts’ as computerized transaction protocols that execute terms of a contract. He wanted to extend the functionality of electronic transaction methods, such as POS, to the electronic world.

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