The 93 Best Analytical Brains in Blockchain 2020

Late last week Twitter — and the cryptocurrency industry in tandem — was hacked, sending a message that was worth much more than a handful of Bitcoins.

By now almost everyone knows the story: Twitter’s verified social media accounts were taken over, and the public was presented undeniably “too good to be true” offers by some of the social media giant’s most famous pulpit-pounders: Elon, Kanye, Obama, Biden, Bezos, Gates, and even organizations such as Binance, Apple, Uber and many more. Apparently just north of $115,000 was delivered to addresses via the fake accounts.

Many will pontificate the act of the hack itself —what breach of security made it possible and whether the funds can be tracked and returned to owners. And many will pontificate the message the hack sent: under pandemic constraints and political mayhem, it’s a shot across the bow about the fragility of our global macro-economic order, and how easy it is to manipulate and transform the words and meanings of leaders of all types.

And maybe, just maybe, the act represents that even without the libertarian-colored glasses, cryptocurrency is truly the voice of the people, and the rebalancing of power.

Regardless of where you land, the most important significance of a mainstream hack involving cryptocurrency isn’t the flaws of our world order — that’s just a red herring. The important outcome is something much more fundamental: it’s the recognition and validation of the efforts of countless individuals who are toiling away in this industry. Those who are navigating a technology that is designed to change the world; those who stand at the crossroads between economic theory and technical innovation.

Who should really be thanked for just how far this industry has come? It’s not just the visionary business executives (although they certainly do their part). It’s those who play a much more instrumental role in creating something out of nothing: the data scientists, the data engineers and the technical analysts. The ones who develop the foundational know-how, the economic theories, and the technical security that makes it all possible. Their praises are rarely sung and during a time when the BBC and every other major media outlet picks up on the impact of cryptocurrency to our world, they should be.

There’s a camp that you might consider “Known Quantities” — voices like Chris Burniske from Placeholder or TwoBitIdiot (Ryan Selkis) from Messari or Jameson Lopp from Casa. These are the megaphones: they share broadly and make sense of the technical theory and economic viability of blockchain ecosystems.

There’s another camp that the majority never hear from or know about. These are the “Unsung Heroes” who are actually tinkering in the mess of the blockchain. Who create the formulas, build the blocks and shape the technological underpinnings. Matt Curcio at Ripple, Heidi Wilder at Elliptic, Angela Minster at our very own Flipside Crypto.

These are the folks who peer into the proverbial microscopes for countless hours on end. You haven’t heard their names often, but that doesn’t mean they should get any less credit.

In the spirit of celebrating the challenge these individuals have risen to, today we’re releasing the Best Analytical Brains in Blockchain 2020. The aim is to raise the curtain on those who deserve a bit of the spotlight.

I’d say we’re at a subtle inflection point. The hack isn’t a blind spot. It’s a bright spot. Hackers took advantage of the holes in the fabric of societal norms, and shined a light directly onto the reality that blockchain represents: A transformation of economic and technical foundation for the better.

So instead of forsaking this moment, maybe we should all be acknowledging the individuals who tirelessly deliver on a vision of the future. Go ahead, virtually hug someone. Consider this a perfect opportunity to show your gratitude to your Known Quantities and your Unsung Heroes who make the whole blockchain industry possible.

Find out more at https//



Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store