Crypto saved my software career

March 5, 2021

This post isn't about price action. It's not about moons or pumps or cruising down a highway of gains in a lambo all the way to the Citadel.

It's about the crypto ethos and how it shattered my jaded disposition in the software industry.

Twenty years ago, I made my first web site.

It was a Blink-182 fan site, showcasing the lyrics to their entire discography of songs and featuring all the next-generation bells and whistles of the time -- scrolling marquees, low-resolution animated fire GIFs, and a guestbook for fellow fans to sign.

Immediately I was hooked.

I started making sites for local bands and offering to theme the MySpace or LiveJournal page of anyone within a 25-mile radius. I was fascinated by the simple idea that I could change some code on a server and know that anyone in the world could see it. In my mind, the internet had transformed from a magical black box of information into an immense wave of creativity potential.

Little did I know, things were just getting started.

Fast-forward to 2020.

The internet was now a part of everyday life, from a niche and promising new technology to a core component of our planet's infrastructure, and I had built a career making software on it.

The internet had grown, and I had too.

But it wasn't all pretty.

The immediacy of the web was now shrouded in a thick layer of abstraction, reinforced through a vapid, homogeneous engineering culture and guided by politically charged tech companies who were too big to fail.

A community once captivated by the fundamental idea of sharing information across the world was now bikeshedding over semicolon usage and eagerly assembling into camps of varying technological dogma.

I was exhausted.

I was done.

A few months into 2020, for the first time in my career, I felt like quitting. My relationship with software had run its course, and it was time for me to move onto something more impactful, something I was passionate about.

Enter the crypto ethos.

At this point, I had been learning about crypto for years, spending my free time demystifying the value proposition of different projects and trying to decipher their complex inner workings.

Understanding the space was an interesting academic and technical exercise, but the overarching vision was lost on me.

Then something happened. Something in my brain clicked.

As I dove deeper in, the pieces of the ecosystem started coming together in my mind to form a vivid, undeniable image of the future.

A world where central banks and colossal traditional financial institutions no longer have a stranglehold on the movement of money.

Where anyone can lend or borrow peer-to-peer without the need for a central entity to mediate the process, on a platform that cannot be unilaterally controlled or influenced by anyone, even its creators.

A world where artists can tokenize their content and open up new ways to engage and grow with their communities. Where creators can confidently opt out of toxic centralized platforms, and tech companies who hold our data hostage in walled gardens can be swiftly punished through mass exodus.

Where people can trade ideas and social movements, instead of stock shares in a company.

A world where the typical ownership and control model we have become accustomed to is inverted.

Through this revelation came a radical enrichment to my personal ethos. I've found my passion and purpose, and it's to build things that will change how people define and exchange value, in a way that's free and empowering.

No one can predict the future, but regardless of what happens with crypto as a whole, I've found my hill to die on.

And I stand atop this hill with strong conviction and an unrelenting childlike wonderment.