by Lolita M Taub ( @lolitataub ) Elon Musk at SXSW 2018. Source: CaliCrypto . As you may know, is a conference and festival that celebrates the convergence of the interactive, film, and the music industry. This year SXSW took place March 9th through 18th and to Austin, TX. And, let me tell you, a big chunk of them were enthusiasts. SXSW attracted 300,000 people blockchain On Sunday, was spotted with a copy of ’s book . There were 37 blockchain sessions scheduled as part of the conference. Complimenting SXSW’s schedule, , , the , and added several dozen more sessions on crypto and blockchain. The crypto and blockchain among individuals, startups, and enterprises was real. Elon Musk Julian Hosp Cryptocurrencies Explained Simply Crypto Summit Initial Taco Offering World Tokenomic Forum Ethereal Lounge FOMO Here’s a recap of what SXSW 2018 had to say about crypto and blockchain, in no particular order: Takeaway #1. Trustless World <> No one trusts anyone. The was cited over and over again. The phrase “trust is on the decline” was shared across the board. Trustlessness was identified as the problem and blockchain as a solution. 2018 Edelman Trust Barometer Global Report Source: 2018 Edelman Trust Barometer Global Report Source: 2018 Edelman Trust Barometer Global Report In a talk about , Brian Behlendorf, Executive Director at Hyperledger, and Amber Baldet, Blockchain Lead at JP Morgan, proposed that blockchain can help address the concerns of a trustless world. The underlying hypothesis: blockchain enables trust in people through its transparent platform and decentralized verification system (of what is the truth). Business on the Blockchain Brian Behlendorf, Exec Dir at Hyperledger; Amber Baldet, Blockchain Lead at JP Morgan. Source: Lolita Taub We’re moving towards a more pragmatic world where we accept that no one trusts anyone and where blockchain verification helps. We’re moving towards a world of verification — not trust. Verify that what you are hearing is true and not just smoke and mirrors. Call to action: Takeaway #2. Use Cases <> Finance, Supply Chain, and Healthcare will lead blockchain use cases. While crypto investing ( gambling ) has grabbed the attention of the masses, enterprise blockchain is hard at work in the background. Businesses are actually trying to figure out how to materialize the value of the promise of a distributed ledger. And the first pilots are heavily focused on finance, supply chain, and health. *cough* *cough* JP Morgan talked about their advancements in finance with . SXSW also featured a panel on . And IBM had an entire session dedicated to supply chain and focused on . Quorum Blockchain and the Crisis of Healthcare Transforming Global Food Supply with Blockchain Brigid McDermott, VP of IBM Food Trust. Source: Lolita Taub Brigid McDermott, VP of IBM Food Trust, talked through the problems that supply chains face today, including: lack of trust and transparency across suppliers, producers, retailers, regulators, and consumers. Then, she explained how blockchain could help address the latter through a specific use case: tracing contaminated items to reduce fraud, waste, and brand liability. McDermott continued by sharing benefits of adjoining data and analytics with the element of trust. She explained that the blockchain would lead to a decrease in social, financial, and time costs for companies, such as their mango pilot customer Walmart. Walmart’s food safety solution using IBM Food Trust built on the IBM Blockchain Platform. Source: Youtube Keep an ear out for developments and consider working on projects in these areas, as they will likely have the most potential to add value (and succeed). Call to action: Takeaway #3. Blockchains Quantitative Value <> You can create business value through blockchain. The session joked that anyone can increase the value of their business by using the term “blockchain.” Quantifiable Business of Blockchains There are examples of that being true. Look up Kodak and Overstock.com. I wonder if Kathleen Breitman and Arthur Breitman, founders of , could have raised $232M without blockchain in its description. Ditto on with ’s $257M ICO raise. Tezos Filecoin Juan Benet True and sustainable blockchain value is still to be materialized. That said, there are many cited potential use cases (see a growing list of them ). here Don’t use the term “blockchain” for the sake of using it. Find cases where blockchain can solve problems and create value. Call to action: technology Takeaway #4. Crypto Quantitative Value <> You can create personal value through tokens. At the , their keynote, Tricia Martinez, founder of , explained that crypto will help people in emerging markets the most. She explained that it is in countries with economic and governmental instability that people can truly make use of the power of blockchain. The sentiment was echoed in SXSW’s panel hosted by the , , , and the . Crypto Summit Wala Trust Crisis: The Need for Blockchain Blockchain Trust Accelerator NDI Bitfury New America Foundation . Source: Lolita Taub Lori Corpuz, Jenny Q. Ta, Anu Bhardwaj, Salome Parulava In the panel, , founder of and investor, encouraged everyone to take advantage of a low priced bitcoin, buy, and then create wealth when it goes up. And that is the way to create quantitative value from blockchain. State of Blockchain Tech and Investments Jenny Q. Ta Sqeeqee People were excited to hear recommendations on what to buy. And in the hallways, it wasn’t strange to hear people’s concern about whether “it’s too late to get rich or not” from crypto. Know that crypto is highly speculative and you can lose anything you put in. Only put in what you’re 100% willing to lose. Call to action: Takeaway #5. The Driving Force of Blockchain <> Fear of missing out drives blockchain interest. Blockchain and Ethereum Meet-Up with Ron Resnick, Exec Dir at the and Consensys. Source: Lolita Taub EEA Blockchain FOMO is real. At the Blockchain and Ethereum Meet-Up, Ron Resnick, Executive Director at the , said, “fear of being left behind is what gets enterprise to look at blockchain.” Enterprise Ethereum Alliance There’s a danger with FOMO. Businesses may jump blindly into blockchain, thinking that it’s a solution to their problems, without that being the case. It’s important for businesses to start by asking themselves: what problem are you solving and is blockchain the right way of addressing it? It may not be. Use your critical thinking skill set. Focus on first identifying the problem and thinking of technology second. Call to action: Takeaway #6. Blockchain Needs Community to Succeed <> The blockchain community is banding together. From the Women in Blockchain meet-up to the Blockchain and Ethereum Meet-up to the Private Blockchain Meet-Up, every blockchain meet-up invited participants to find ways to collaborate and expand the community. Austin: A Global Center of Blockchain Innovation panel. Source: Lolita Taub At the session, the , shared how their organization is headed by different players (i.e., , , , ) and aims to connect their local community with people, events, and resources. Austin: A Global Center of Blockchain Innovation Austin Blockchain Collective Wanchain Lighthouse Holdings Multicoin Capital Laurence Ventures Given that blockchains require adoption and membership of chains, community is essential for the success of blockchain. Join or build a blockchain community, share your resources, and collaborate. Call to action: Takeaway #7. Blockchain Ignorance is Real <> People don’t understand what is blockchain, but they want in. Not many hands in the audience go up when asked, “who can explain blockchain?” That’s a problem because we can’t answer the question, “can blockchain help solve x problem?” if people don’t know what blockchain is. Ignorance is not bliss. That said, I was glad to see that SXSW did their best to provide sessions to explain the fundamentals of blockchain. They invited authors of blockchain books, such as ’s (I recommend it!) and Julian Hosp’s . Tiana Laurence Blockchain For Dummies Cryptocurrencies Simply Explained Julian Hosp in What is Blockchain? How Will it Change the World? session. Source: Lolita Taub also led the session and educated the lay on blockchain. He broke it down by defining, giving examples of, and pointing out benefits/challenges of: (1) consensus, (2) centralized vs decentralized, (3) distributed ledger technology (e.g. blockchain, tangle, and hashgraph), (4) cryptocurrency (e.g. crypto vs blockchain), (5) bitcoin, alt coins, and shitcoins, (6) use cases (e.g. smart contracts in insurance), and (7) the philosophy of giving power back to the people (and driving to a world that’s between a dictatorship and anarchy). Julian Hosp What is Blockchain? How Will it Change the World? What is Blockchain? How Will it Change the World? session Source: Lolita Taub All that said, people and organizations need to understand that centralized approaches are cheaper and faster (but, it’s true, that we risk centralized authorities abusing their power). On the flip side, blockchains can be abused too. In every session I attended, there were people from both technical and non-technical backgrounds trying to understand how they could get involved. Professors of universities asked questions about what to teach their students to help them along the path. Engineers asked how they could jump into blockchain. And of course, there were many who simply wanted to know more about crypto. In more than one session, members of the audience asked, “What coins would you suggest I buy and how do I do it?” People want to know more. For the technical: start with Google and For the non-technical: start by reading Call to action: cryptozombies.io Blockchain For Dummies Takeaway #8. Redundant Question <> But what happens to blockchain when quantum computing arrives? Someone in just about every session asked a question about the future of blockchain post quantum computing. The answer across the board: we’ll know when we get there. TBD. Figure out blockchain first. Read posts, , and . Call to action: Medium Blockchain For Dummies Google Takeaway #9. Blockchain UX is bad <> We need to work on having better user experience. In for UX, , VP of UX at , kicked off the session by asking about their blockchain UX experiences. Everyone raised their hand when asked if they had found using their first crypto wallet confusing. Blockchain UX is bad today, and it needs to get better. Don’t Sweat the Tech: Trade Explanation dylan thomas figlo Sweetbridge How to achieve better blockchain UX? Understand that no one is a UX expert but that the users are. So, it’s important to listen to them — think and allow your users to give you feedback easily and painlessly. NPS Hire someone who is really good at UX and listen to your users. Call to action: Takeaway #10. The Rise of Private Blockchains <> Public blockchains are not worth the money for enterprises. Quantifiable Business Benefits of Blockchain session. Source: Lolita Taub In the session, , CEO of Industries, believes that we will see a rise of private blockchains. Fowler explained that public chains are very expensive, are not worth it for enterprises, and that enterprise customers want to develop private blockchains. And she’s bullish that enterprise will be who will ramp up blockchain adoption and drive the winners in the space. Quantifiable Business Benefits of Blockchain Karyl Fowler Transmute It may be the case that Fowler it correct, but then again, many blockchain projects exist outside of enterprise — at blockchain startups and ICOs. Whether there is a rise in private or public blockchains, we (the blockchain community) must: (1) educate our customers, (2) identify customer pain points, (3) when blockchain is identified as the right solution, sandbox, and test blockchains, and only then (4) launch a blockchain intro production. Call to actions: If you liked the post, it with your friends and . 👏 👏👏👏👏 SHARE CLAP About Author: Lolita Taub is a TEDx speaker and keynote, a World Economic Forum Global Shaper, an artificial intelligence enthusiast, and an enterprise tech professional and investor at Portfolia . She holds 9 years of enterprise B2B software-hardware-and-services sales experience at IBM, Cisco Systems, and in Silicon Valley. Lolita has been recognized for her work on Forbes , Inc.com, The Huffington Post , Entrepreneur.com, and Los Angeles Times , among other publications. Follow Lolita on Twitter @lolitataub and connect with her here .