Patent VS Open Source: How does China change lanes in the blockchain field?

Author: Robin

Source: Generation

The historical development is so dramatic. A few weeks ago, the blockchain industry was chilling, and it was instantly ignited by a major policy of the country. In the near future, the promotion of various regulations, the mainstream media's crackdown on non-compliant blockchain projects, and the rapid cooling of the blockchain industry atmosphere…

In the case of a change in the external environment, we should calm down and think more about the future of the industry.

At the Wuzhen Conference hosted by Babbitt, X-Order founder Tony delivered a speech entitled "From the Cryptography Community to the Big Country Game". This article follows the line of thought, we carefully combed the various differences in the field of blockchain at home and abroad, trying to find a development model more suitable for the domestic.

“Policies also need to be tailored to local conditions and teach students in accordance with their aptitude.”


Difference 1: Patent VS Open Source

According to the "Blockchain Key Technology Patent Situation White Paper", by the end of the year, the total number of patents in the global blockchain sector reached 8,996, and China reached 44,535. The global average annual growth rate is 276%, and China is 321%.

Resource: "Blockchain Key Technology Patent Situation White Paper"

It can be seen that if you look at the whole year of 18 years, Chinese patents account for 70% of global patents. In terms of trends, China's contribution to patents in the blockchain sector has increased from 27.9% in 16 years to 46% in 17 years to 70% in 18 years.

Let's take a look at a specific company:

From the point of view of the company, it can be clearly found that the proportion and ranking of Chinese companies are clearly rising rapidly. In terms of patent R&D, China does have great advantages.

Resource: "Blockchain Key Technology Patent Situation White Paper"

Here is a very interesting Nchain, very interesting, this is the main body of the BSV, has always firmly occupied the top of the patent. Behind the story of Ownen Cong, I believe that everyone in the currency circle is familiar with it.

We can see China's rise in the blockchain patent field, but on the other hand, we all understand that the blockchain technology is not a product of an academic school, but is rooted in a deep open source community culture: countless senses Interested programmers join the project and volunteer to contribute.

Bitcoin is so, and so is the Ethereum , and the community is the most important project promoter to participate in the project's contribution.

Behind the open source culture is the ultimate pursuit of geeks for a certain demand, and a gift culture they form. They see perfect software as something that can build their reputation.

This has to be acknowledged that it is very different from the domestic culture. Many foreigners' projects are very simple. They are to build a better tool, and they are willing to use various forces. In China, the concept of community is less heard. Without an open source culture environment, programmers contribute code to a company rather than a project.

However, we can see some good signs recently. Huawei, our proud domestic brand, has released its latest Hongmeng operating system. They have set up a project library on github, ready to gradually open the system. It is an important step in cultural integration.

Raymond, the author of the open source movement's "Bible" and "Cathedral and Market," did not emphasize the need to open source. Instead, he believes that open source can work better under a framework. This set of standard frameworks that are more suitable for open source are as follows:

  • Reliability / stability / scalability is very important
  • In addition to independent peer review, there are no other convenient ways to verify the correctness of design and implementation.
  • The software is critical to the customer's business
  • The software creates or runs a common computing or communication infrastructure
  • Key methods (or methods that enable equivalent functionality) are public knowledge
I don't want to argue here whether it is good to close the technology research and development into a patent, or to open up the form to attract everyone to contribute. Both obviously have their own advantages and disadvantages. Regardless of the white cat and the black cat, catching the mouse is a good cat.

So what is a "mouse" for a technology?

It should be to provide better services for human beings , or to help humans evolve . From this perspective, we should absorb the advantages of both patent and open source practices to form a more open culture. The key words here are openness, abandoning confrontation, and embracing each other's strengths to work together.

Market flow vs technology flow

Some people may be confused. For a project, for a product, what does the market flow and technology flow mean?

Insiders have a term called consensus.

The market stream is characterized by throwing the project to the market and drawing a consensus through various games in the market. This market is of course not only refers to the secondary market, but to the comprehensive market including the government, end users, partners and other parties. .

The technology flow refers to the team or the project, or a few of the project-related partners have a consensus on the project, and often more technical.

It may be the verification of the theoretical model of the project's success, but this theoretical model has been in the process of development and polishing, and has not really turned to the market to accept feedback from the market.

The essential difference is that the scope of consensus between the two is different, and the strength of consensus is different. The consensus of the market is more extensive and the consensus is stronger.

Many domestic projects are very partial to technology flow. There are two different "technical" forms. One is to focus on technology research and development, to develop various high-level consensus algorithms, governance, and application models, but only theoretical. Verification, there is no extensive promotion.

The typical case is the isolation status of various Internet blockchain projects. We can see that traditional technology companies such as BAT have a lot of R&D and landing scenarios in the blockchain field. In fact, they only do some work with single-point companies. Small demos, and these R&D applications for the blockchain field are not recognized by the geeks who are really keen on blockchain technology.

The currency circle is more of another "technical" form: price, price or price.

In the past 19 years, many judgments on the project side have become a pull-up, justice, and price represents everything. Of course, there are some technical projects that are very much devoted to the underlying development, but because the price is rather bleak, it is considered to be of little value. It is such two extreme technological flows that cause a split, and the opposition will only make the future uncertainty of the overall industry become larger and the difficulty of supervision increases.

The "market flow" is completely different. These projects are more open to the market or the interaction of the world's parties, and are not enclosed in a small circle.

A typical project is bitcoin. On a global scale, the regular army (most of the national sovereignty, government departments, technology companies, etc.) and the guerrillas (anarchists, geeks, hackers, etc.) now recognize the existence of bitcoin, or maybe some It has not been considered legal, but at least recognizes the rationality of its existence.

Is this case too special?

Then look at the recent Blockstack, the formal level, he was recognized by the SEC, is the first legal ICO fundraising project (of course, also need to do a certain KYC), in the traditional currency circle, also received some people in the community Recognized, there are many community people contributing code to it, which is itself the token form of ERC20. Coin Security also assisted in fundraising and listing.

not enough?

There is also JPMorgan's stable currency, Libra in the game, Coinbase on the exchange, the recent opening of Bakkt trading volume, and the compliance platform Coinlist. These projects are also worthy of the standard, and they are undoubtedly recognized by the wider scope. It also means that these targets can reach the talents, funds and resources of the wider space in the future .

A concept that is very hot in 19 years is called the radical market. In the open source community, there is a concept called the worse the better. Both of them actually advocate the problem of product and project operation in a market way.

The radical market is relatively more extreme. It broadly expresses the idea that a market mechanism is designed so that those who need more revenue from the market must bear more costs . The worse the better, the more emphasis is placed on interacting with the market and then iterating quickly .

These are the essence of the market flow and a better way to promote project development.

“Hold the market and embrace the future.”

Chinese regulation vs US (global) regulation
Figure: Supervision of digital currencies in countries around the world

From the above picture, we can find that governments around the world have not reached a consensus on how to identify and supervise the digital currency . A common practice in most regions is to establish a licensed exchange, and digital currency cannot be used as a monetary currency.

It can be seen that China and India are relatively conservative in this area compared to global attempts to regulate all transactions.

In this tight Sino-US trade relationship, it is easy for us to compare the United States and find that the United States has been moving faster in the blockchain regulatory policy in the past two years, along with policy changes, although it still prohibits Americans from participating in the big Part of the ICO, but there are already compliance programs that allow KYC-compliant personnel to participate.

At the same time, there are various types of compliance stocks, which are supplemented by derivatives exchanges. It also introduced Howey Test and other methods to judge the applicable scope of regulation. IRS also explored how to collect taxes from Bitcoin traders, and gradually formed an ecosystem of blockchain supervision programs.

Looking back at the country, since September 17th, the policy aspect is relatively conservative. In terms of compliance, there are not many bright targets. However, we can see that after 1024 this year, there have been some encouraging changes in the market. After the country's high-light positioning of the blockchain, the policy began to pick up. There are already compliance companies exploring in various directions, including:

  • Central Bank launches DCEP
  • According to Tianyue data, on October 31, a company named “National Chain Digital Asset Trading Service (Guangdong) Co., Ltd.” was incorporated in Zhaoqing City, Guangdong Province with a registered capital of 10 million yuan.
  • For bitcoin mining, the original clean-up and rectification has gradually changed to use the basic mining new industry growth point.

These positives indicate some good directions, but we all know that the real pain points behind us have not been solved in the currency circle – the quality coin circle project has not yet received sufficient policy tilt .

In fact, many excellent internationally competitive projects have strong Chinese attributes behind them. In the exchange field, we can see the rapid development of the currency security and the fire currency in the past two years. The new and old public chains like NEO, ONT and NERVOS emerge gradually. There are also Irisnets that follow Cosmos in the cross-chain field.
This feeling is a bit like the Chinese stocks of the year. Many of them have no way to go public in the domestic market and only seek financing. We should take this opportunity to adjust our policies and make more favorable to these projects that have made actual contributions to the industry. They have established their reputation in the traditional currency circle. If there is policy support, it may become the next Coinbase and the next Blockstack. It is truly based in China and looks at the world.

When it comes to regulation and compliance, DCEP and Libra are two major topics that cannot be avoided. These two projects, which are exposed to the supervision of the public, have not been successfully implemented, but their first draft has caused a big discussion on a global scale. Any implementation once implemented will definitely affect the direction of the future regulatory system.

In fact, the two can be described in terms of technology implementation, governance structure, and implementation concepts. There are quite a few articles on the Internet that compare and analyze their differences. Interested students can search and learn by themselves. Here are two things I want to say:

First, why are these two different projects placed in the same dialogue context?

Second, what is the consequence of confronting competition?

For the first point, the reason why these two projects can be confronted is that they represent a new financial system paradigm that breaks the traditional financial system. The use of Dario's term for the cycle is paradigm shift.

Behind it is the willingness of two big powers to expect to lead the new financial paradigm in digital currency. It has also been mentioned that the current global regulatory environment has not fully adapted to the new changes in the digital currency field, so the success of these two projects will represent the right to speak in the new era of digital.

So apart from the differences in the project itself, the content and direction they are trying to be are strategic highlands behind the big countries that need to be occupied.

The second point is to see that the two projects themselves represent two different evolutionary directions.

DCEP must be an efficient and centralized digital currency solution, closed source, developed by technicians in-house.

And Libra represents a digital currency solution that tends to decentralize (at least will) community-based collaboration, and the community will continue to make a variety of contributions to its code for its governance (we can see the pure white matrix development based on Move IDE tool).

If we say that the future digital currency will definitely occupy an important position in the global economy, then it is now standing on the fork.

Complex economics tells us the power of path dependence. Once one of the forked paths proves to be viable, it may lead to a state of final locking, which becomes the future standard.

to sum up

Comparing the differences in the development of these domestic and international blockchains, we will find two key words:

The first is open . Whether it's patent/open source or docking with the market, all we need is to maintain a more open mind and truly embrace the advantages of two completely different behaviors. Like CEFI and DEFI, which have been debated in the currency circle, it is better to have a hybrid and finally form their own unique style to achieve maximum consensus.

The second is finance . This is especially true in the game between DCEP and Libra. The standards of the future financial system may be rewritten.

Here is a quote from the briefing blockchain Xiao Feng: He believes that in the traditional global financial market, it is quite difficult for China to achieve “big overtaking” in the competition, but the blockchain creates a parallel with the traditional global financial market. The new financial market, although the new financial market is still in a small and fragile stage, its potential and growth rate is extremely fast. "With the development and development of this market, China is likely to become a frontrunner, even affecting the formulation of rules, having a first-mover advantage in the competition, and eventually becoming a winner in the new financial sector. "

To meet the new future of open finance, each of us should be ready.