Episode 5 – SMART MONEY

Imagine a company with no employees, no managers, no board of directors. Imagine a company that ran as a piece of software guaranteeing a democracy of shareholders.

Distributed Autonomous Organsation, or DAO, promised this to its investors:

dao_voting

It didn’t quite go as planned.

We’ve learned a lot about securing computer programs in the nearly 25 years since Brendan Eich invented Javascript – a language now powering nearly every site on the Web.

We’ve invented ‘sandboxing‘ – your smartphone apps can’t steal data from one another, nor can the websites you visit.

Vitalik Buterin created a cryptocurrency with coding features built into the currency. Ethereum runs millions of programs, each in its own sandbox.

Enabling ‘smart money’ – money that can think for itself – Ethereum has proven among the most useful of all coins – and as a result is now worth more than any cryptocurrency other than Bitcoin.

EtherScripter is an amazing tool that lets you drag-and-drop the design of smart contracts. It draws heavily from the SCRATCH programming language used to teach children as young as 6 years old the essential skills of programming. So EtherScripter is easy to understand – and fun.

Here’s a simple EtherScripter smart contract that performs a coin flip:

Etherscript coin flip

Get your hands dirty with EtherScripter here!

As we learned in our interview with CryptoFlip‘s Max Kenny, there’s a lot more to doing a coin flip well – that is, with truly random results.

The DAO failed because of bugs – and hubris. Smart contract pioneers wanted to run before they’d learned to walk.

This WIRED article explores the failure of the DAO in detail.