At first, Odom said nothing more than, “I don’t think that altcoins are going to be that relevant compared to Bitcoin.” There was an awkward pause that lasted for the next few seconds, as the audience wanted him to explain his anti-altcoin position on a panel that was supposed to be all about the future of altcoins. Odom was then asked to go into more detail on his position throughout the rest of the panel, and most of his responses were able to illustrate how Open Transactions makes many altcoins “irrelevant.”
Although there are plenty of people in the Bitcoin community who understand that altcoins don’t have much of a future due to the network effect of money, there are still plenty of others out there who feel a special kind of altcoin, known as the appcoin, that will revolutionize various industries over the next decade. Chris Odom is not one of these appcoin advocates. After claiming, “Bitcoin is the winner.”, Odom went on to explain how the coins behind certain decentralized apps in the Bitcoin space don’t really have a reason to exist. The man also known by his online alias FellowTraveler claimed, “[Developers] are creating additional functionality and they’re using these appcoins to fund development, but the actual additional functionality that they’re creating would be perfectly viable without the appcoin itself.”
Odom went on to state, “Whenever you make a system that uses an appcoin, there’s going to be some comparable system in the near future that doesn’t have an appcoin that has the same functionality.” One of the projects that Odom was not willing to demonize during his opening statements was Ethereum. When asked about his thoughts on the project and their $15 million crowdsale, Odom simply stated, “It’s too early to tell.”
It seems that the main reason Chris Odom and many of the supporters of Open Transactions aren’t that excited about altcoins is that they understand what this project can do for Bitcoin. One feature that Odom specifically pointed out is anonymity. Altcoins such as Darkcoin and Anoncoin are looking to take advantage of the fact that anonymity and privacy are two areas where many Bitcoin users would like to see improvements. As a side note about anonymity during the altcoins panel, Odom noted, “Open Transactions uses Chaumian untraceable cash. You don’t need an altcoin to do it.”
In addition to providing enhanced privacy and security measures for any financial instrument issued on the platform, Open Transactions can also be used for microtransactions and instant confirmations. These features are made possible by the fact that Open Transactions is simply a system of federated servers rather than some kind of blockchain technology. While it does not come with the same level of security as a blockchain, there are only certain types of transactions where blockchain-level security is actually needed. A user can always keep savings on the blockchain in cold storage and use an OT server as their hot wallet. It should be noted that voting pools (see video presentation by Justus Ranvier below) will make it impossible for a single server to run away with a customer’s bitcoins.
It seems likely that a large number of altcoins will be made irrelevant when a commercial form of Open Transactions is finally released. There will still be plenty of people touting various appcoins and new “Bitcoin 2.0” marketing schemes, but the features offered by Open Transactions should limit the viability of blockchains that are attempting to compete with Bitcoin as nothing more than a currency. It’s anyone’s guess as to when the market will learn its lesson and stop creating bubbles in new, niche token systems every few months, but hopefully Chris Odom’s creation can help make it easier to see the reality of the cryptocurrency market as a whole.
You can watch the latest update video that was released for Open Transactions below:
Images from Shutterstock.