One Technology Missing from the Next Place To Be List
Just before the New Year I published a short post about the next technology skills that will be big when it comes to employment. Recently I’m realizing there is one missing that I’d also suggest watching. That technology is Block Chain, or easier to understand by the name of Distributed Ledger.
There’s way more to blockchain than what people know from crypto-currencies. Blockchain provides better security, higher speed, reduced costs and true traceability from its distributed ledger architecture. One component that where I don’t see a lot of discussion is around smart contracts. With smart contracts you can automatically execute, control or document events and actions as they pertain to an agreement.
Last month I upgraded our heating system to be more efficient and add AC. The multiple step process showed first-hand the friction that the disconnected systems caused. There were several hiccups, including:
- The email quote did not match the actual DocuSign we were sent. This caused delays, more paperwork and created a feeling that I needed to triple check everything.
- The big box store required us sign the the document to cancel the purchase in order to contract for the purchase. The UI required this before I could complete the transaction. There was a convoluted reason to sign it then, but it slowed down the sale with more phone calls.
- The account rep had to stop in for a check to keep things moving forward even though we were paying a large amount on our big box store credit card.
Smart contracts would have removed all of these items. Dan Selman has a great presentation on the Accord Project as it relates to Smart and Legal contracts. Quite interesting that just last week DocuSign acquired all the intellectual property of Clause. Clause is (was) a small (19 people according to LinkedIn) firm that is working on a smart contract platform.
After watching Dan’s presentation, taking a few blockchain courses at edX, and this big box purchase, I can see that smart contract and blockchain will be a big influence on tech. The purchase of Clause and their technology by DocuSign was one that DocuSign couldn’t pass up.