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Author Topic: Bitcoins will become Betamax if we don't do THIS  (Read 5252 times)
tonygal
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July 25, 2011, 05:37:53 PM
 #1

Sony had the superior technology. Betamax was better than VHS. So what happened?

Numbers. It's all about numbers. JVC, Panasonic, Hitachi, Mitsubishi and others all ganged up and pushed out an inferior technology to the masses.  But an inferior technology with a 2-hour tape.

And we all know what happened next. Betamax entusiasts were left talking to themselves about the great benefits of their tehnology.

Here is another comparison. Linux users swear up and down about how great of an operating system it is. Mac users too.  But what kind of market share do they get?

Hint:  the answer is here  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Usage_share_of_operating_systems

So how does bitcoin position itself to avoid going the way of betamax, or relegated to a 2% market share?  We all agree we have the best technology. But how do we get the NUMBERS?

1.  Make the wallet easier to use
2.  Make trading more accessible
3.  Make it easier for businesses to accept it

These same points have been made by many people. But to offer a solution you really need to look at the business case study of VHS v. Betamax.  Here's one source, but look for others:

http://gizmodo.com/5316722/the-dirty-backstabbing-mess-called-betamax-vs-vhs

And then read up how Sony changed their gameplan when Toshiba et. al. ganged up on them once again and tried to push HD-DVD against blu-Ray.  This is THE business case study we all must learn from if bitcoin is ever going to make it!  What really happened behind the scenes at Warner Bros?  Before they dropped their bombshell that they will stop supporting HD-DVD?  If anyone has the inside scoop, please share.

I know some very smart people are working on the bitcoin wallet. And some very smart people are working on the exchange aspect.  And some very smart people are working on the merchant side too. Every link in the chain needs to be absolutely the best it can be. And then we need to push this everywhere. To everyone.  And quickly.

We have a Technical Lead for bitcoin, which is a great thing.  We also need a Business Lead for bitcoin.  Someone to push out the message in a controlled proactive fashion, and not put us always in a reactive mode.  Because we are always reacting to something bad, and it's the completely wrong way to market a product.

In NY at the Conference, I would like to meet with anyone that is interested in forming a committee to conduct a search for a "Business Lead" for bitcoins.  We need it desperately, but let's figure out all the requirements of the job before we just start nominating people.

I will be in NY for the conference, with Steve and the rest of the Bit-pay team. Including Alison. If you don't know who Alison is, click here:

https://bit-pay.com

I look forward to a great weekend of bitcoin!

Tony

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ctoon6
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July 25, 2011, 05:53:32 PM
 #2

VHS won because they had a longer record time. even though the betamax did have slightly better resolution and overall quality of the picture.

tonygal
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July 25, 2011, 05:56:22 PM
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VHS won because they had a longer record time. even though the betamax did have slightly better resolution and overall quality of the picture.

Correct.  Sony did release a 2-hour tape.  But by then VHS was too far ahead in the Numbers.

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Yatta99
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July 25, 2011, 06:10:34 PM
 #4

VHS won because they had a longer record time. even though the betamax did have slightly better resolution and overall quality of the picture better porn.

Fixed that for you  Grin

Tips for new box to: 16s14wcsNo5TcdsGLttL7B1XWiCv8E4L6A
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July 25, 2011, 06:16:34 PM
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VHS won because they had a longer record time. even though the betamax did have slightly better resolution and overall quality of the picture better porn.

Fixed that for you  Grin


that's it.
Same reason why we have such a robust internet now, porn.
tonygal
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July 25, 2011, 06:17:06 PM
 #6

Exactly... VHS won out because of porn.

True.  The porn companies also got behind HD-DVD.  When it lost, they said fine.  We'll just stream it.  We don't need your $10 blank discs.


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ctoon6
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July 25, 2011, 06:17:14 PM
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VHS won because they had a longer record time. even though the betamax did have slightly better resolution and overall quality of the picture better porn.

Fixed that for you  Grin


that is also true  Roll Eyes

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July 25, 2011, 06:20:00 PM
 #8

And we all know what happened next. Betamax entusiasts were left talking to themselves about the great benefits of their tehnology.

Here is another comparison. Linux users swear up and down about how great of an operating system it is. Mac users too.  But what kind of market share do they get?


The issue being, we're dealing with highly technical products (Linux, Bitcoins, Video recording technology). Rather than in the product itself, some blame lies in the developers.

Developers of those technologies are usually very skilled in their own area of work, some perhaps nearing genius rather than being 'ordinary workers' but the communities are generally (note: not always) socially inept. You could compare them to a collective mind of autists or aspergers.

Linus Torvalds, the creator of Linux, is known to continuously bring up this issue on the Linux mailing list because he gets annoyed by completely introverted and shut-in people who pay zero attention and regularly ignore the common usability of the code they write, rather only focusing on the 'function' which even an experienced programmer might have a hard time understanding.

The more user-friendly and social you make your technical product the more users and revenue it's going to attract. That's a simple fact and you can see it in every success story. Companies like Apple and Microsoft go to painstaking lengths to make their technical products as accessible to the typical non-geek as possible.

At the other end of the spectrum you have geeks who are good at programming and make phenomenal products but are irritated by the incompetence of the end user (typical Joe or Jane average), completely unable to grasp the fact 99.99% of the population has no idea what the hell they are trying to explain in highly technical terms.

People don't want command line interfaces. People don't care about kernels or which type of cryptography provides the highest security. People don't want to go through 5 hoops just to buy something online.
This mystical "people" is the average person on the streets. He or she wants something that will improve their lives or entertain them with the least possible effort.

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Jack of Diamonds
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July 25, 2011, 06:27:32 PM
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The mystical "people" are also the ones that get their personal data stolen via Citi and have to fight with them when their shit gets stolen.

Exactly. As a programmer, you almost need to 'protect these people from themselves' if you want your company to still have them as customers in the future (regardless of their stupidity or technical ineptitude, they are still giving your company money regularly and paying your salary).

They don't care about the details, they just want things to work easily and be safe. That's what Joe/Jane Average pays for. It's useless to despise them for their stupidity when your livelihood comes from them. Think of it like supporting your grandmother who can barely turn the PC on. Don't hate on them, make the product even more 'idiot-proof' on it's own.

(Bitcoin developers don't get a salary but they might have other vested interests, financial or personal, to make bitcoins as user-friendly as possible)

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July 25, 2011, 06:31:51 PM
 #10

IMHO, you get porn and poker sites (read: pokerstars) to accept bitcoin and this will be the dominate currency of the future. 
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July 25, 2011, 07:08:04 PM
 #11

I seem to recall this forum driving off the only porn site that was accepting bitcoins...
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July 25, 2011, 07:12:17 PM
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"Sony had the superior technology. Betamax was better than VHS. So what happened?"

After I finished reading the OP, I immediately thought of this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IRVdiHu1VCc At first viewing, one may wonder where's the connection. May I suggest watching it with the OP in/on mind.

Then read the follow. Why Imitation Bests Innovation: http://www.forbes.com/2010/05/11/china-america-innovation-leadership-mangement-imitation-book.html
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July 25, 2011, 07:14:11 PM
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When you take into account servers and Android OS, I'd say Linux has been fairly successful.  There are large numbers of people using it without even realizing it (or caring).  Bitcoin can achieve a similar success.

Bears.  Beets.  Battlestar Galactica.  Bitcoin.
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July 25, 2011, 07:38:13 PM
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Nice post OP.  As I stated in another thread, by design, Bitcoin puts the onus on the user to shape its future.  Having a revolutionary piece of technology is not enough, Bitcoin will succeed or fail based on the amount of effort put forth by its users. 

Reminds me of the quote: "Two hands at work will accomplish more than a thousand clasped in prayer."

If anyone is currently working on projects to improve Bitcoin's infrastructure and is in need of assistance, feel free to PM me or post to the forums. 

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July 25, 2011, 07:47:08 PM
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When you take into account servers and Android OS, I'd say Linux has been fairly successful.  There are large numbers of people using it without even realizing it (or caring).  Bitcoin can achieve a similar success.

Also don't forget OSX and iOS are both based on the Linux kernel.

It's true that usability and accessibility must be improved in order to accelerate adoption of Bitcoin, but even if those improvements are slow to come, I don't think Bitcoin will die right away. It's already carved out a good niche and developed a devoted following. I don't think anyone's crystal ball can predict what we'll be doing with bitcoins 2, 5 or 20 years from now.

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July 25, 2011, 07:51:14 PM
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The issue being, we're dealing with highly technical products (Linux, Bitcoins, Video recording technology). Rather than in the product itself, some blame lies in the developers.
Why would the developers need to be the people that promote it? In an open source community, everyone does what they find fun / are good in. If you're not a PR person you don't have any "blame" for not being good at that.

In the case of Linux, it's mainly the ecosystem of companies around it (Redhat, Ubuntu, etc) that have people that promote its use to "normals", not the developers themselves.

In the case of bitcoin there is currently mainly a lot of mouth-to-mouth and media attention spreading it. But if you want to volunteer doing PR work that'd be great ofcourse Smiley

Quote
Reminds me of the quote: "Two hands at work will accomplish more than a thousand clasped in prayer."
+1 I'm a huge fan of people that do something instead of telling others what to do or what is best to do.

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July 25, 2011, 07:59:51 PM
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When you take into account servers and Android OS, I'd say Linux has been fairly successful.  There are large numbers of people using it without even realizing it (or caring).  Bitcoin can achieve a similar success.

Also don't forget OSX and iOS are both based on the Linux kernel.
I thought it was BSD

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July 25, 2011, 08:28:49 PM
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When you take into account servers and Android OS, I'd say Linux has been fairly successful.  There are large numbers of people using it without even realizing it (or caring).  Bitcoin can achieve a similar success.

Also don't forget OSX and iOS are both based on the Linux kernel.
I thought it was BSD

Drifting off topic...

My understanding is that the OSX _kernel_ is mostly based on the Mach work.  That a good bit of Mach work happened to be integrated into FreeBSD (previously) was mostly tangential.  As I understand it, the OSX _userland_ leveraged FreeBSD work, at least early on.  More palatable license model upon which to base a commercial product compared to the GNU stuff.  I think Android used the BSD-licensed C libraries for similar reasons.  Not sure where things stand now.

tonygal
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July 25, 2011, 08:34:31 PM
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Why would the developers need to be the people that promote it?

Yea yes yes. That was exactly the point I made with the bold and red in the OP. We also need a business lead for bitcoin. That is the issue here. The technical programmers should not be the ones getting grilled on TV. we need a more proactive business message for bitcoins.  It needs to be a consistent and well rehearsed message. we need numbers.

 

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July 25, 2011, 08:40:16 PM
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Yea yes yes. That was exactly the point I made with the bold and red in the OP. We also need a business lead for bitcoin. That is the issue here. The technical programmers should not be the ones getting grilled on TV. we need a more proactive business message for bitcoins.  It needs to be a consistent and well rehearsed message. we need numbers.

Your OP should do more to emphasize this.  Maybe phrase it as something like "the next step for promoting Bitcoin" instead of "Bitcoin is dead if we don't do this".  As it stands, you've drawn the rabid defenders out of the woodwork, who've derailed the topic.

May want to just kill this thread and post another.
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