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The Blockchain Application Stack

Posted on by Brandon Klein

Last week I led a workshop at NYU’s Bitcoin Hackathon, HackBit, where I talked about Bitcoin as a Protocol, alternative uses for the Blockchain, and a little bit about the challenges and opportunities that lie therein. I tried to share everything we’ve been learning about this space, but unfortunately time coinstraints prevented us from doing a deep dive. To compensate, I’ll be writing a series of short blog posts explaining some of the ideas in that workshop, starting with a look at what I’m calling The Blockchain Application Stack.

The first thing Brad taught me when I joined Union Square Ventures is that one of the greatest things about working in the Venture Capital business is that you get to look at markets from a very different vantage point. Every day, we have the privilege to learn what the future is going to look like from the companies and entrepreneurs who are building it. It’s thrilling, especially if you’re a technology geek like we are.

We spend a lot of time looking at everything that’s going on with Bitcoin and the Blockchain. This involves e-mailing, tweeting, texting, calling, skyping and meeting with teams all over the world who are building next-generation technologies and applications that leverage the blockchain to undo many of the paradigms that dominate the software business today. Some are just ideas, some are products already in the market. Some have flopped, and some have gone on to raise millions of dollars in funding. Being exposed to all these has allowed us to identify certain patterns and trends that are helping us build an image of what’s coming. I’d like to begin sharing with everyone, as well as invite you to help us think through this.