The Bottom Up, Secure and Immersive Internet
This week’s blog explores the coming next generation Internet — a web that is secure, decentralized, sensually immersive and has other advanced features. Below are key trends driving this change.
George Gilder’s latest book, Life After Google, is a landmark forecast on what he calls the “cryptocosm.” Like his earlier book, Microcosm, which forecast the Information Technology Revolution caused by microchips, followed by Telecosm, which forecast today’s explosion of wireless technology, the cryptocosm extends major advances in blockchain technology into all spheres of the Internet.
Gilder thinks the cryptocosm will produce a web that overthrows the top-down monopolies of Google, Facebook, Amazon and the other tech giants that have created a web that is insecure, clumsy and destined to fail. Using stunning examples of brilliant technological advances by pioneering entrepreneurs, Life After Google promises an Internet that is secure, private, decentralized and controlled by users rather than the tech giants.
The Blockchain Revolution
In Gilder’s terms: “Google is hierarchical. Life after Google will be heterarchical. Google is top-down. Life after Google will be bottom-up. Google rules by the insecurity of the lower layers in the stack. A porous stack enables the money and power to be sucked up to the top. In Life after Google, a secure ground state in the individual, registered and timestamped in a digital ledger, will prevent this suction of hierarchical power.” A telling sign is that China is leading the blockchain revolution. In October of 2019, Premier Xi Jinping called on the nation to “seize the opportunity of blockchain technology as a new security architecture for the Internet.” In April 25, 2020, China launched its national blockchain platform, the Blockchain Service Network (BSN). In time, Xi plans to replace their national currency and other currencies around the globe with new digital systems. TechCast has reservations about blockchains. It requires multiple people to endorse a transaction, burns up huge amounts of energy and generally seems too complicated. But we should not discount too easily this latest vision from one of the seers of technology.