Crypto is a nuanced disaster

This is a response to Drew DeVault’s rant against cryptocurrencies. Disclaimer: I own 0$ now, I used to be a developer in the space and owned quite a bit. I have a few NFTs that are worth 0$ and I don’t care about them.

I quit Cryptocurrencies because I wanted to do my Master’s in Computer Science. I still developed open source devtools in the space, but I quit it pretty much entirely. Bitter, angry and resentful – scammers fill up the space, and ethics aren’t really popular around here. It is the grimy, dirty corner of Computer Science no one wants to deal with. It’s the Gary, Indiana of this space.

Crypto is pretty much all scam and spam now. Post Musk-takeover, my Twitter notifications were all Crypto ponzi scams tagging me, to the point where I disabled my notifications.

I’ve not gotten around to talking about resource hoggers like Drew mentions, I’m still talking about scammers.

They come in many different shapes and colors: Crypto users who on surface claim they want to see Crypto survive, but play dirty games in the backrooms. Chamath and Musk’s market manipulation tactics, VCs with millions in their bank account wanting to exploit companies who exploit others. Outside the industry are people who are ready to scam the suckers who are stupid enough to buy in. From the Logan Pauls to the Donald Trumps, everyone gives it a go. The suckers are not all stupid, some are playing a numbers game. They buy a Logan Paul NFT, and they make 10 different investments, hoping one of them “goes to the moon” (🤢) offsetting their other loses - quite like VCs. Even the non-scammers, like airdrop hunters, are disgusting. Just feels like I am living in Dubai - everyone is obsessed with money and everyone is lying.

Hackers are somehow the better actors in this field, at least they tell you their intentions upfront. MEV is another disgusting bit of this industry - bottom feeders who will do anything to get a bite, a sloppy second, of someone else’s victory. And there are hundreds of publicly open crypto-supporters who practice frontrunning and teach you how to do it.

Once all this is done, the adoption junkies come up: Solana users. My genuine view on Solana is a similar to that of Downey Jr’s view on Wall Street: “If money is evil then that building is hell, the most obnoxious group of money-hungry, low-IQ, high-energy, jack-rabbit, fuckin’ wannabe-bigtime, smalltime shit-talking, bothersome, irritating, immature motherfuckers I've ever had to endure for more than five minutes.”

The chain scales, has no frontrunning (that I know of), is fast, has almost all the projects Ethereum has ect.

Then why do I hate it?

Because it’s not decentralised. Ethereum has a million clients, I’d bite my pinky off if Solana has two. Rust is also a horrible language for smart contract development, DSLs are the way to go.

Despite all this, I believe the technology itself was great. It was amazing, but we need to get rid of dishonest actors, and more often than not, it’s non-technicals, the muggles, we need to be non-interesting for them. Once we are poor enough for them, we will fail to be interesting. What will an HR or a product manager do when there’s no money to be made? Designers also design with an incentive. Honestly, send all the designers to healthcare and avionics, they need them more than we do, crypto is not hard to design, we just need to figure out the technicals. I am being a bit extreme, I don’t think developers are better than others, but it’s a fun bit to do.

Anyway, that’s that. I sympathise with Drew, must be a hard time. Anyway, time to go back to self-hosted Gits and custom CIs.