The Pareto Principle states that there is an “unequal relationship between inputs and outputs. The Pareto principle states that 20% of the invested input is responsible for 80% of the results obtained.”
You’re probably wondering what the Pareto Principle has to do with the blockchain and the many ensuing projects? Well, if one were to look at code repository on Github over the past year, one would see that there were at least 26,000 blockchain-related projects that was created on the platform, but can you guess how many remain? Just a “small percentage are still active”.
This indicates that many have tried their hands at the blockchain technology, yet have abandoned the projects. This may be due to a variety of reasons, new technologies require patience and persists to unlock and truly understand. New technologies require inputting an investment of time to gain the correct knowledge, interaction with the community and more collaboration with human capital to see the project fully through.
According to a report called “Evolution of Blockchain Technology: Insights from the Github Platform” prepared by Delloite, “there were approximately 26,885 blockchain-related projects in 2016 developed on Github.” The research team over at Deloitte has found that the average lifespan of a project as represented by the Github data to be 1.22 years.
The Deloitte researchers chose to glean their insights from Github because many significant blockchain projects were concentrated on this platform. Github also allowed them the ability derive insights on “who is behind this substantial blockchain development, what type of programming is powering it, where the talent resides, how networks and communities of projects and developers are organized, and what risk factors exist for investing resources into repositories.”
The work done by the team at Deloitte is not only interesting work but it is much needed work which can allow for more sustainable growth for the blockchain community by incentivizing and providing key information for would be blockchain project creators. The information would allow these potential community entrants to understand aspects of building projects and how to see them through to completion.
Open source projects are amazing and have provided immense value as the internet and the web progressed as well. But the issue is that there has to be built in mechanisms to keep individuals working on the projects. There has to be some sort of community engagement and other aspects that are not necessarily based around monetary gain. Open source projects thrived in the past but have seen less interest over the years as many have seen activated commercialization tendencies.
Long term and successful open source projects allow for the development of new technologies and the potential for successful commercialization later on. Open source projects allow many people to come together and solve different problems that could then be used for projects that are of a commercial nature. The greater the experience of the many collaborators in the open source space, the greater their ability for the expansion of opportunities in the space.
Yet if there isn’t some sort of system to keep attention the projects have a chance of dying. Thus, projects that are run by organizations have a higher chance of survival, the aspects of accountability and inherent organization help them to maintain and have longevity.
“Of particular significance, some projects that organizations have developed have resulted in new platforms (such as Ethereum, Ripple, Corda, and Quorum) which some developers now use to build applications.”
According to the researchers “The stark reality of open-source projects is that most are abandoned or do not achieve a meaningful scale. Unfortunately, blockchain is not immune to this reality.
The report adds that about 90 percent of projects developed on GitHub become idle, with the highest mortality rate occurring within the first six months of a project beginning.
The researchers give an insight into the geographical areas where the distributed ledger is being developed so far. It noted that San Francisco is home to the most diverse projects being developed on the blockchain, with 1,279 users and 101 organizations. London comes in at second place with 858 users and 61 organizations. New York is third with 725 users and 49 organizations.”
They also stated that China also plays a significant role in the development of the space “ It is also worth noting the high level of activity in China, specifically, Shanghai and Beijing. In both of these cities, most of the projects pertain to cryptocurrencies and cryptocurrency exchanges, with an emphasis on scalability.”
Interesting notes that is present in the report show that one of the most important things about this blockchain industry has been the open source nature of it. Many of the projects have been created in an open source mindset and even the pioneer cryptocurrency, bitcoin, was formed and placed in an open source environment.
The report goes on to highlight key definitions of a project which we will include here as they are certainly relevant in ICO analysis.
What’s a “repository” ? Software projects that host code.
What’s a “watcher” and a “committer”? A watcher simply follows the development of the project and committer goes a step further and contributes to the project with their code.
So “commits” are contributions to a codebase.
“Forking” is copying a project in the work environment
Who are the big players in the field of blockchain?
A concentrated amount of commercial projects lie on the financial space, seen in the many ICO’s who are seeking to disrupt payments, insurance and other aspects of the age old financial structure.
The language that seems to be the most common in many projects are C++. Yet, the researchers are finding that, Go, the language developed by Google is slowly becoming popular as well, as it is “the second largest language used for blockchain-related projects, and it’s core components of simplicity and scale might be one of the primary reasons for it’s growth.”
Where is the talent located?
The information presented allows us to be able to understand the community, how the blockchain field is progressing and who is moving it forward.
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