"My prediction for the future of money is that it's going to get a lot weirder. It will be more closely tied to, or allow a greater expression of, our identities and our individuality." - Laura Shin, podcaster
Money used to be simple. Central banks issued it. You earned it, spent it, rarely thought about it.
Then came bitcoin, and as they say, everything changed. We realized that you don't need governments to make money, and in fact, anyone, individually or collectively, could create it for themselves.
And create it, they have.
In the last few years, we've seen countless coin and token projects, some serious, many idiosyncratic, all in their own way making claims about the future of money.
These pioneers made ETH and tether, doge and shib, central bank digital currencies (CBDCs), social tokens, non-fungible tokens and much more, showing that money can be many things and what matters, often, isn't the technology but whether people believe in the project. A money's value, in other words, is a function of a community of believers and investors.
And, we're only getting started. Money is multiplying in its forms and uses. It's unbundling (relieving itself of the need to be a store of value, unit of account and medium of exchange all at the same time). It's becoming programmable (more like software than hardware). And it's becoming more and more fun: a reflection of culture, memes and the best and worst of the internet.
As podcaster Laura Shin told us, money increasingly mirrors "our identities and our individuality."
She also said: "My prediction for the future of money is that it's going to get a lot weirder."
Which is a perfect encapsulation of this increasingly wild and varied field of innovation. Whatever you think the future looks like - and we'll have plenty of ideas this week - it's surely going to get stranger.