Bitcoin, the virtual currency used by savvy techies and online black market traders, has faded from the public eye in recent months. But investor and cryptocurrency expert Adam Draper says bitcoin still has the potential to play a major role in the financial market — once society figures out exactly what to use it for.
Draper, son of high-profile venture capitalist Tim Draper, founded Boost VC in 2012 to fund startups working with bitcoin and the blockchain — the data structure that generates the digital coins. While it’s unlikely most people will be buying Starbucks with bitcoin in the near future, Draper said, the technology could revolutionize everything from banking to stock transactions to the art industry.
Where else will bitcoin take off? Mars. When humans colonize the Red Planet, they won’t be using cash, he said.
“Almost all of the smartest people I’ve ever met in finance are working to make the blockchain or digital currency happen,” Draper said. “Huge institutions, insurance companies, banks — everyone is trying to figure out what to do with it.”
Draper sat down with this newspaper to share his thoughts on cryptocurrency. This interview has been edited for length and clarify.
Q What exactly is the blockchain?
A The blockchain does one thing: It replaces