Chapter 2. Blockchain 2.0: Contracts

From its very beginning, complexity beyond currency and payments was envisioned for Bitcoin; the possibilities for programmable money and contracts were baked into the protocol at its invention. A 2010 communication from Satoshi Nakamoto indicates that “the design supports a tremendous variety of possible transaction types that I designed years ago. Escrow transactions, bonded contracts, third-party arbitration, multiparty signature, etc. If Bitcoin catches on in a big way, these are things we’ll want to explore in the future, but they all had to be designed at the beginning to make sure they would be possible later.”32 As we’ll see in Chapter 3, these structures could be applied beyond financial transactions, to any kind of transaction—even “figurative” ones. This is because the concepts and structure developed for Bitcoin are extremely portable and extensible.

Blockchain 2.0 is the next big tier in the development of the blockchain industry, an area of prodigious activity as of the fall of 2014.33 Because the Blockchain 2.0 space is in development, there are many different categories, distinctions, and understandings of it, and standard classifications and definitions are still emerging. Some of the terminology that broadly refers to the Blockchain 2.0 space can include Bitcoin 2.0, Bitcoin 2.0 protocols, smart contracts, smart property, Dapps (decentralized applications), DAOs (decentralized autonomous organizations), and DACs (decentralized ...

Get Blockchain now with O’Reilly online learning.

O’Reilly members experience live online training, plus books, videos, and digital content from 200+ publishers.