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Bitcoin Cash Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats

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Written by   44
1 week ago (Last updated: 3 days ago)
Topics: BCH, Bitcoin Cash

This is known as the SWOT analysis. Here's what Investopedia says about it:

SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats) analysis is a framework used to evaluate a company's competitive position and to develop strategic planning. SWOT analysis assesses internal and external factors, as well as current and future potential.

So let's try it, in a light-hearted manner, shall we?

Strengths

Bitcoin Cash is an instance of Bitcoin, the invention. With that we inherited a technology that has worked without fail since 2009, a technology which first solved the double-spend problem without requiring central authority and made magical internet money possible. This peer-to-peer electronic cash system achieved it by using proof-of-work system which enables anyone too freely, without an enrollment process, participate in securing the network and get rewarded for it. Many other cryptocurrencies have popped up since 2009, but I believe none of them can promise the same security model. This is a major strength of Bitcoin Cash.

Over time mining competition resulted in arms race for specialized hardware, also known as mining ASICs (Application-specific integrated circuit) so while anyone is free to mine, they need to make capital investments to be competitive. I see this as a great thing for our security -- because they make miners committed, they can't run off and do something else with their computing power. Once they buy the equipment they must mine with it to get a return on that capital investment.

Technology is just an enabler, though. People build, and we have a lot of devoted people, all around the World, who speak diverse languages and are coming from diverse cultures and background. Isn't that something special? I think it is. You built this! Yes, you!

  • You, node builders, 6 distinct teams! You're busy building node implementations, thinking about how to improve on what can be done with Bitcoin Cash while being extra careful to keep the security promise. What are nodes? Computer programs which operate directly on our blockchain, they are our backbone. Like e-mail servers and the complex network between them.

  • You, miners! You're running one of those node software, and are busy building and securing the blockchain, block by block, every 10 minutes or so. You never stop, how could you? There's a great reward hiding in every block!

  • You, wallet developers, too many to count! You're busy building wallets, thinking about the how to do what can be done, to serve the user the best. You build our financial e-mail clients. We use whichever one we like, and it connects us to a server and enables us to send financial messages, also known as money.

  • You, the user! You get to enjoy all that, you get to send these financial messages! You are also building, without even knowing it! You see, in a free market environment, financial messages i.e. choosing who to send money to plays a very important role. It creates a complex network, where fellow humans are rewarded with these money messages for goods and services they produce, and it really is a message. Message saying: I like your product/service, please make more!

  • You, another user! You are on the other end, receiving them. You are the one building a product/service for your fellow humans and you are getting these financial messages as encouragement for further work! You are building businesses, big and small. Keep building!

  • You, the influencer! I'm not just talking about you stars. I'm talking about everyone who writes anything in public. You, yes you! Everything you write, someone will read. Think about that. When you're talking with someone on a forum, you're not only talking with that someone, you're talking with everyone who may be looking! There's a responsibility in that. You never know how it may affect those who observe, because they won't jump in to tell you but they will observe and make judgement. So be smart about it, think about good conduct!

  • You, holders and speculators! You support the growth of our market value! Even if you hold other assets, that's cool, get your "tendies" wherever you can, but don't forget to bring some back home :)

I see people as our main strength! Let's celebrate it!

Humans of Bitcoin Cash! You will grow Bitcoin Cash into a peer-to-peer electronic cash system for planet Earth! Who knows, maybe even beyond!

A few more words on technology

Bitcoin used to have pretty safe instant payments through 0-conf, and while those don't work anymore on BTC because of RBF and blocksize policy, those instant cheap payments are alive and well with Bitcoin Cash. People may complain about slowness but it's just because they only ever used exchanges which require a few block confirmation. For actual cash-like use, 0-conf works well. If you send money to a friend it'll appear in his wallet instantly and he can proceed to make other 0-conf transactions, like tip some people on Reddit who can then instantly proceed to make purchases with supporting merchants, like keys4coins. When a block is found, the entire chain of those 0-conf transactions will be in it because we will always have room in our blocks.

Bitcoin Cash nodes currently accept up to 32 MB blocks and have processed 32 MB blocks. The Testnet has safely tested 256 MB blocks, which will eventually be enabled on our mainnet. At 32 MB that's right around 280 transactions per second, PayPal level. A 256 MB block is about 2200 transactions per second, Visa level. BTC can at best process 7 Tps, Ethereum can process 30 Tps. High bandwidth, low bottleneck allows scaling where fees remain sub penny, around 1/5 of a penny, yet still incentivize secure and diverse miners. For the past month of February Bitcoin Cash has processed more transactions per day than Bitcoin, and the fees have never risen.

Bitcoin Cash also has smart contracts which allow many interesting possibilities and are quickly becoming popular in the B2B world. They allow things like Detoken, where you can hedge or go long on Bitcoin Cash. Similarly there is AnyHedge, where you can do derivatives trading. There is an upgrade proposal to enable native token support, which would enable smart contracts on Bitcoin Cash to do a lot more, and gain significant competitive advantage for common token uses like stablecoins and atomic swaps.

Because fees are so low tipping is possible on things like Reddit, Twitter, and Twitch. There are platforms with native Bitcoin Cash support: the Twitter-like noise.cash, and a Reddit/Medium hybrid read.cash. Thanks to 0-conf and all these services posting the tips directly to the blockchain, they all smoothly work with each other i.e. as soon as you get some cash on noise.cash you can use it to tip someone on Reddit and he can use it to buy something with 0-conf supporting merchants. It just works, magic internet money! There's also a peer-to-peer fundraising platform similar to Kickstarter, called Flipstarter.

These are not all projects, but it is a good sample of what Bitcoin Cash enables. People built these projects with Bitcoin Cash, it is always people who build! People are the strength, technology is just an enabler!

Weaknesses

We have to be honest with ourselves about this, we can't run from the truth. We must know and own our weakness, and then we can grow from it! Some of us went through war, not just one. They left a lot of battle scars, some have healed, some have not. Let's revisit our past wars and battles:

  • The scaling war. This was the war that went on when Bitcoin was still one. It was a war between people. So you see, people can also be a weakness. It lasted for years. Some didn't want Bitcoin to grow to its full potential of becoming a peer-to-peer electronic cash system for planet Earth! Those of us who were there remember it. We tried to reason, it was no use. So a split was unavoidable. Who won? Nobody. Everyone lost.

  • The battle for Bitcoin title. We lost this one. This left big scars. We have to accept we lost the battle for the title, and only then can we heal and turn it into a strength. We all know the truth, that Bitcoin Cash is Bitcoin. Sometimes, though, we can't straight say it to those not ready to hear it. We can whisper it, and amongst ourselves we can sometimes even shout it! It all depends on the circumstance, and that's why it could be both a weakness and a strength. Notice I said battle, not war. This was our first battle as Bitcoin Cash, and it will be our last - the final boss battle. We must first grow big for that one!

  • The war with Craig "Satoshi" Wright. This wasted a lot of energy. We won, and we thought we're free to grow from there, but we lowered our guard too soon.

  • The war with Bitcoin ABC. This wasted a lot of time because they used to be our leaders and we trusted them but Bitcoin Cash development was stuck, and the market didn't like that, and at the end they even wanted to take our money for it!

Some of you were there during all of those, some of you were not - lucky you! :)

You noticing something? I'm again talking about people. They can be our greatest weakness. Some of you don't care about these battles, you're here to make money and just be users. That's great, happy to have you, just stay alert, ok?

All these battles eliminated people from our community. They made us stronger by eliminating bad actors and making us more cautious, but they also made us weaker by making us smaller and by leaving unhealed scars. Why are unhealed scars a weakness? Because whomever wants to hurt you will try to use them against you by putting salt on them, and it can burn like hell, making you lose your nerve and discipline. Only when they heal they become strong tissue and can be a source of strength.

The battle for Bitcoin title left another weakness. Our public image in "established" crypto circles. When BTC won the title, they didn't stop there, they wanted to and still want to punish Bitcoin Cash for daring to dream big, they wanted to destroy the opponent after they won the battle. They failed in that but they hurt us, a lot. We're working around it by growing where their word has no reach and I hope we grow more. We're also working to improve our public image, step by step, person by person.

I like to tell people that BTC is now a store of value / digital gold, and that it is fine -- make your money wherever you can, but know what it is that you're buying. BTC was supposed to become more than just that, and that's why Bitcoin Cash exists: to deliver that more, the promise of a peer-to-peer cash system, for planet Earth!

Opportunities

If people are builders, and they are our main strength, then we need to find ways to amplify that strength! Give it levers! Give it more strength! We do this by inviting people to join us, and by giving people the tools to build. And good news, there's a lot of development going on, focused on giving people the tools to build! This is what technology is, an enabler of opportunity!

The Wallstreet Bets event has shown that people are waking up to the reality of central bank policy, that it's preventing them from enjoying the world of abundance that the free market creates when it's actually free! It will hopefully make more people think about what is the meaning of money, and it could bring them to us.

Mining creates some interesting opportunities. It is the first time in history where the power producer and power users can be right next to each other, that means you can, for example, have solar power facilities in the middle of a desert without having to think who to sell the energy to and run cables all the way to them. Mining creates the incentive to increase renewables capacity in places where there would otherwise not be a market for energy. This capacity can then create an oasis and invite others who need a depenedable energy source.

Threats

Threats from those who see us as threat. Could be governments, could be other companies wanting to build their payment systems or business models which success of Bitcoin Cash might impede. We don't like anti-competitive behavior, we like us a free market. Stay alert!

On this point, there's already a deterrent to actually using cryptocurrencies. Every purchase using a cryptocurrency is treated as a trade in most of the western world, which may result in taxable capital gains. For small transactions I think many can stay below radar, but if you ever make any serious money and want to buy something with it, you'll be burdened with accounting for it and potentially a tax bill. This is more of a threat for those living in the western world, and less so in underdeveloped world where grey markets are way bigger and actually do good for people's livelihood.

Another threat is mining. We share the same PoW algorithm with BTC so the proportion of mining power on BCH chain is almost directly related to the BCHBTC price. Good news is that we have many miners who like BCH, and are mining both BTC and BCH to optimize their income because it's good for their business. In the past they have shown that they're willing to sacrifice some earnings and step in to protect BCH should the need arise.

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Written by   44
1 week ago (Last updated: 3 days ago)
Topics: BCH, Bitcoin Cash
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