Many projects are facing severe problems due to the recent market situation. This article argues that this carnage will leave many crypto projects dead on the field – and few projects shining bright with IOTA leading the way.
Billions of dollars have been taken out of the crypto market. Months ago it was already clear that the majority of ICOs were practically dead. The remaining projects around the world are struggling now because the bubble has burst and the bottom has not yet been found. Again, Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt have taken the upper-hand among investors leading to the one question which too often seems to have been negated: Do Bitcoins and the likes have the power to be the “next big thing”?
I shall argue that 99% of the cryptocurrencies will fail over the coming months because they don’t add any value to the status quo. However, IOTA is set to be among the handful of projects which will see a breakout to heights never seen before with professionalism being the driving force.
I will first state my own reasons and afterwards address the most probable counterarguments.
Reason I: The history
From the start, IOTA has had a clear vision (read our article on the history of IOTA for more details). The founders of the IOTA Foundation (IF) went through really tough times, sometimes at the brink of financial failure due to unexpected costs (keep in mind that Dominik and David were only in their 20’s). However, they have proven to be wise analysts: Not only did they foresee the bubble 2017 (they won the “naked skiing bet”) but they also saw this big crash coming which would wash out the weak projects. They acted professionally in the sense that they did not openly attack other projects or participate in groups/associations denouncing other projects.
TL;DR: The team has proven fully focused on their project for years (!) and have proven to hold a wise estimation of this crypto madness.
Reason 2: The partners
Because there was not much buzzing around IOTA in the first couple years, it stayed under the radar for a long time. Today, however, IOTA has so many partners that it doesn’t make sense to introduce the 47 official partners here – you may read our articles on the likes of VW, the automotive industry and FUJITSU. IOTA strives to be the backbone of the Internet of Things, it wants to serve as the standardized data layer for any basically industry.
In order to achieve this, IOTA now has not only many premium companies as official partners, but also two world renowned influential experts (Dr. Richard Soley and Dr. Rolf Werner) as members of their supervisory board.
On top of that, recently announced partnerships prove that the IF has a clear vision of how to realize their goals: integration of the IOTA’s Tangle for sensors and machines via crypto chips and middleware (Riddle and Code) as well as partnering with “the only ISO/IEC-compliant industry standard, the worldwide reference-data standard for the classification and unambiguous description of products and services” show that IOTA is neither vaporware nor cheap talk. If IOTA lacked professionalism (be it with the people involved or the product itself), companies like those mentioned above would not invest a penny of wealth or a second of time.
TL;DR: Excellent partnerships don’t invest in unprofessional businesses – draw your own conclusion with regard to IOTA’s partnerships.
Reason 3: The legal background
The University of Luxembourg observed that most entities in the crypto industry take the easy way out when it comes to tax and legal regulation:
Data collated from the 80 largest ICOs, regarding funds collected, indicated that a quarter of the companies were concentrated around a few jurisdictions known for beneficial tax breaks, and included Curaçao, Mauritius, and St. Kitts and Nevis.
IOTA could have done the same and chosen an easy way to establish itself as a legal entity. But the founding team chose what might be the most difficult and rigorous path by being established in Germany. Ultimately, they have managed to become the first fully regulated not-for-profit foundation in Germany.
This opens up tremendous opportunities:
But subjecting ourselves to the onerous oversight of one of the world’s most respected governments, within the heart of the EU, will give IOTA an unparalleled legitimacy to pursue visionary projects together with forward-thinking public and private sector organizations and research partners across the globe. (source)
Imagine being the CEO of a large company. If you’re interested in cutting edge technology offered by two projects, one registered in the Bahamas and the other project in Germany, it seems pretty clear which one should immediately garner more trust.
In comparison to, for instance, the Ethereum or even Bitcoin Foundation, IOTA Foundation is a lot more transparent and accessible for the community (try to chat with ETH or BTC core developers like you can at the IOTA Discord channel; even finding members of their foundations is close to impossible).
Moreover, IOTA’s staff is approaching the 100 people milestone. This, of course, is not only about quantity, but also quality. Each of the people at the IOTA Foundation has an impressive CV and fits perfectly into the whole.
Many people means many projects and many possible misunderstandings and bottlenecks. A lot of 2018 has been spend on restructuring and refactoring the IF to make it more efficient. As Ralf Rottmann, Board of Directors member, put it in August 2018 on Discord:
We are setting direction and trying to empower the team as good as we can. Making most of this about „The Board“ doesn‘t do them – or the project – justice. The best thing to support the project as a community, would be to not focus so much of the energy on the five people soon to be the new board. In fact, internally we recently initiated a process to transition most day-to-day decisions towards a vastly empowered executive team. In growing organizations, it’s all about trust, checks and balances. IOTA Foundation is maturing.
TL;DR: IOTA is registered under German law with close to 100 people working there for different sub-projects – professionalism is key to get results.
Reason 4: The cutting-edge future (hardware!)
IOTA was only the by-product of JINN, a project to develop ternary hardware chips. JINN is still ongoing and the community is desperately waiting for news around this making IOTA (software for IoT) and JINN (ternary energy-efficient IoT hardware chips for any machine) an unrivaled combination for the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) – the latter of which is the big buzzword of any big company worldwide.
In addition to JINN and IOTA, there’s also Qubic and IcT. With Qubic, machines and sensors which rely on computations can outsource
their calculations to real, big computers who offer their job in return for IOTAs. A new programming language (Abra) is being developed to do this in a ternary fashion and enables cascades of computational tasks (consider it as more powerful, energy-efficient smart contracts, just without fees). This has never been done before, it really is cutting-edge technology (read our article on Trinary and Lifi for more details).
IcT is the most secret project – second only to JINN. It is about swarm intelligence and outsourcing nodes to swarm-nodes running on low-end devices. If you are interested in the bits which are publicly available, you should read this article.
These things are not developed by ordinary people – this is groundbreaking technology which has been developed for years and is still not far enough to be shown to the masses. However, especially the #Qubic channel on IOTA’s Discord server is very active and Eric Hop does a great job explaining to the community how the development is coming along (the IOTA blogposts about Qubic are equally interesting and are released on the 3rd of each month).
TL;DR: IOTA is not only about software . The full potential will only unfold once the hardware components begin to inter-operate. This cutting-edge technology will enable things we can hardly imagine as of now.
In case you have reservations…
I shall address some counterarguments here briefly just to set things straight:
- “The founders offended others“: Yes, there was a time when in rare occasions/chats with the community not very elegant words were used. The most prominent (“Neha, are you sober?”) was used in the midst of a smear-campaign against IOTA and has been re-quoted ever since without looking at the context (especially that IF acted very professionally against blatant lies; even recently again on Twitter with Navin Ramachandran acting very politely as opposed to “the others”). And by the way: If the IF founders were so manner-less, the partners mentioned above would certainly not want to work with them.
- “Partners yes, but no working, real-world products“: Since I want to keep it short, I will link only two examples: Volkswagen (big showcase + first car product in January 2019) and Fujitsu (see this German summary also). Taipei has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with IF for using IOTA in this metropole (focus will be on Digital Identity) and the first real product has been installed there in October by TwoIoT.
- “IF is threatens legal action against other projects“: There has only been one incident where Sergey Ivanchegklo tweeted that Ethan Heilman should be worried because his lawyers were be working on “this”; the issue being the aforementioned smear campaign against IOTA with Ethan Heilman claiming to have found serious flaws in the cryptograhic function developed and used by IOTA. In the end this turned out to be false by design.
- “JINN is just a myth – IoT chips don’t care about IOTA“: In case you forgot: JINN was being developed before IOTA. Of course, as with all hardware development, this is under NDA and we are not allowed to know anything about it. This is all about trust, and looking at the history of the project there is certainly more reason to trust these people than to distrust them; especially since everything only makes sense if there is a hardware-part to it.
- “IOTA is centralized – it is nowhere near the decentralization ideal of BTC etc.“: Yes, IOTA still has a coordinator. But it’s just until the network matures; just like Bitcoin had “checkpoints” in the beginning as well. As the IF puts it: The questions all revolve around how to ensure that IOTA is the most secure, scalable, distributed, permissionless and decentralized technology possible. This necessitates the removal of the Coordinator – any other outcome would be completely unacceptable to the IOTA Foundation and everyone involved in the project. You might find this blogpost about the end of the coordinator quite interesting.
All these aspects make IOTA stand out from the mass of crypto-nonsense-coins. Once IOTA begins being used in the Internet of Things globally, people will talk about the key which enabled IOTA to get to the top: not a public war between the influential people like with Bitcoin forking to Bitcoin Cash forking to Bitcoin SV and delivering nothing – but a clear vision attracting the right people due to professionalism from the start!