We need to move the conversation forward regarding the skills that we as Creative Problem Solvers will need to facilitate a mainstream-adoption of blockchain-based applications. This thought-piece is intended for both Designers who have little understanding of the blockchain and the more advanced strategists who are currently bombarded with requests to develop new products and services with the transformative technology. If you’re already well-versed in the issues, feel free to skim the first section, but we need you to accept the call-to-action to join us in the conversation of developing the new skillsets, tools, and frameworks to facilitate this rapidly expanding opportunity space.

Areas of Study for “Trust Architects” — Design Skills for Blockchain’s Application Layer

We are in a data crisis. For decades, and by some accounts centuries, massive amounts of data have been captured and stored in centralized silos under the control of 3rd parties – and sometimes oppressively. Business models abound on the use of this data and as long as it’s not “personally identifying,” those 3rd parties find it fair-game to leverage that data to generate immense amounts of revenue and other intangible value to their organizations.

“So, what?” you might say. Well, some find it off-putting that while they’re out and about shopping with friends or working for their employer or for themselves, that another party such as their phone carrier or an app or another service provider they gave permission to track their activities (under the guise of simple added convenience or extra entertainment) is able to capitalize handsomely on those activities even with unrelated business; that is, out of the context of the original agreement in which the data was shared.

Maybe that’s not a big deal. Maybe you consider it a fair trade. Sometimes the added convenience or whatever we trade for lack of privacy is valuable. It is pretty awesome stepping out the car to have its location automatically pinned on the map so the shortest path back home is easily pulled up. But, let me ask, if you could be compensated by these multibillion-dollar market cap companies, would you accept payment? I would. And I’d want it on my own terms. Of course, even if that were possible, can we trust that we’ll be fairly compensated? How would we know?

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