When I was young, someone once told me the story about the gold rush in San Francisco. Hence it’s called 金山! There was gold available and everyone went there to dig and hunt for gold. Some people found some, many did not find any. Still, it was a great time and changed the city of San Francisco.
The lesson here is not about the gold, but about the winners. Who are the ultimate winners in this gold rush period? The gold mines? The people who found gold nuggets?
No, it was the ones who sold the shovels.
Since then, I learnt 2 things:
- The mundane boring small things are the backbone. Like providing the infrastructure, aka the shovels. This is applicable to both business, industries, work and personal life.
- Look up and downstream in the supply chain. Look beyond where people lay their eyes upon. Upstream, it’s the jewellers. Downstream, it’s the tools. You can always hedge your risk by being in the up/downstream and be the best in that segment.
In this case, be the one that provides shovels. You might get less returns compared to the expected value of finding golden nuggets. At the same time, you providing the shovel is a consistent returns due to the demand available.
I am going to be building and providing the infrastructure of the future.
It’s such a simple little story, one that was said in passing. But it altered my perspectives massively in how I think and do things. For years, I’ve been looking at what shaped the world, how it is being shaped now and what the future looks like.
Economics and technology have always been the biggest passion of mine. Finance, geopolitics and general math are my little hobbies. (Nerd lol)
The opportunity of economics in blockchain (technology) popped up and it boils down to defining, designing and building the infrastructure to the systems of the future. My mind was blown. This is it. This is the shovel of the future.
So I’ve been working and reading tirelessly for years! Brainstorming on how this works, going through the murky unknown to find some sense of how to get started and deconstructing many existing infrastructure to build them up from foundations again. (AKA basically how I live my life anyway.)
Time is still revealing if this is valuable to the world. I’m not sure what the future holds, but I’m grateful for where it is heading and moving towards. I hope I’m providing a valuable shovel, in the world of tomorrow.
Shovels; tiny, insignificant but such an important tool to get to that golden jackpot.