Humanity 3.0

Monetary evolution and the changing state of matter. From barter to digital assets, from the solid state to the gaseous state.

September 3, 2023


We are experiencing a change of state in monetary terms. This change is materialising with Blockchain technology, Bitcoin and crypto-currencies, crypto-assets and other tokens attempting to materialise the new forms of nuts of the next world in terms of accounting and technology. In this respect, I believe that vaporisation, which in physics means the transition of a substance from a liquid or solid state to a gaseous state, is a perfect illustration of the paradigm shift we have been experiencing over the last few years. This process occurs when the molecules of a substance absorb enough energy to overcome the forces holding them together in their current state and become sufficiently excited to move freely as a gas. Vaporisation can occur by heating, as in boiling, or by evaporation, which occurs when the molecules on the surface of a liquid absorb enough energy to escape into the air as a gas.

Velocity 1.0 - Solid - Bartering

The history of money goes back to the first modern civilisations that settled down. The first forms of exchange involved barter, where goods and services were exchanged directly for other goods and services. It was at this time that the first forms of writing, for accounting purposes, appeared to facilitate storage (with seals to indicate the contents of amphorae, for example), then the transmission of knowledge or the science of justice, the Law (The Code of Hammurabi was a set of 282 laws inscribed in stone by the Babylonian king Hammurabi, 1795-1750 BC). In ancient China and Egypt, metal coins were used as currency as early as 700 BC. As societies became more complex, the need for a more standardised form of exchange became apparent. This led to the development of various forms of money, such as shells, pearls and precious metals. In the Middle Ages, many cultures used gold and silver coins as currency. The value of these coins depended on their weight and the amount of precious metal they contained. Paper money was first used in China during the Tang dynasty (618-907 BC). In Europe, the use of banknotes became widespread in the 17th and 18th centuries.

Velocity 2.0 - Liquid - Currencies

In the 14th century, William of Ockham discovered Ockham's razor, the principle of parsimony. This principle states that, when faced with several explanations for a phenomenon, we should choose the explanation based on the smallest number of hypotheses. In other words, the simplest explanation that accounts for all the facts is the most likely to be correct. To quote Leonardo da Vinci: ‘Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication’. This principle is often used in scientific research and is a guiding principle for many fields of study, including physics, mathematics and economics. Ockham's razor can help to reduce complexity and eliminate superfluous information, allowing problems to be solved more efficiently. And with the double-entry accounting revolution, this principle is far from being disproved.

Double-entry bookkeeping is a method of accounting in which each financial transaction is recorded in two separate accounts, one on the debit side and one on the credit side. The double-entry system was published in the late 1400s by an Italian mathematician and Franciscan friar named Luca Pacioli, who was largely inspired by Giordano Bruno and Leonardo Fibonacci, for example. He is credited with publishing the first complete treatise on the subject, which describes the principles and techniques of double-entry bookkeeping and helped to popularise the method. The invention of the printing press in the 15th century made it possible to produce paper money. In the 19th century, the gold standard was adopted by many countries. Under this system, the value of a country's currency was directly linked to the amount of gold it had in reserve. This meant that the government had to maintain a certain amount of gold to guarantee the currency in circulation. However, this system collapsed during the Great Depression and most countries abandoned the gold standard in the 1930s. Today, most countries use fiat money, i.e. money that has value because it is guaranteed by the government that issues it.

This means that money is not backed by a physical commodity like gold, but rather by the faith and credit of the government. Electronic forms of money, such as credit cards and digital wallets, have also become increasingly common in recent years, accounting for 80-90% of transactions in developed countries. Accounting has continued to evolve over the centuries, with the introduction of new technologies, regulatory changes and professional standards. Today, accounting plays an essential role in business and commerce, providing the basis for sound financial decision-making and reporting. Since then, double-entry bookkeeping has become the cornerstone of modern accounting and is widely used by businesses and organisations to keep accurate records of their financial transactions. The double-entry system provides a system of checks and balances, ensuring the accuracy and completeness of financial records and facilitating the detection and prevention of error or fraud.

Velocity 3.0 - Gassy - Crypto-assets

As you will have realised, the third evolution of money is the blockchain and crypto-currencies or crypto-assets. It is in this sense that the image of the transition from liquid to gaseous takes on its full meaning for me. Are you familiar with gas charges?
Decentralisation, immutability, programmability, transparency and security are the values or value propositions of Blockchain technology. The potential applications are diverse, and many organisations and governments are investing in research and development to find new ways to use it.
As the use of blockchain technology has grown, it has begun to attract the attention of governments, financial institutions and other large businesses. Many have seen the potential benefits of using blockchain for secure and efficient record keeping, as well as improving supply chain management, tracking assets and reducing costs.

Despite its many potential benefits, blockchain is not without its challenges. Scalability, interoperability and regulation are just some of the obstacles that need to be overcome if blockchain is to reach its full potential. In addition, privacy and security concerns, particularly in the context of personal data, must be addressed if the technology is to be widely adopted.
The history of blockchain has been one of rapid growth and innovation, and it is poised to continue shaping the future of technology and the way we interact with information and value. Although the technology is still in its infancy and many challenges remain, the future of blockchain is exciting, and it has the potential to revolutionise a wide range of sectors and transform the way we do business.
Despite these challenges, the potential benefits of blockchain are too great to ignore, and many see it as a key technology for the future. The story of blockchain is still being written, and its impact on the world is likely to be significant in the years to come.

Overall, the history of money is complex and constantly evolving, shaped by the economic, social, cultural and technological developments of different eras.

Renaissance 3.0

In the wake of all this history, we are now experiencing a twofold revolution, stemming from an observation that everyone is feeling, a change in civilisation in terms of communication and accounting. As the philosopher Michel Onfray has said, civilisations are alive, they are born, they grow, they age and they die, and in this great upheaval, cultural and technological changes mark the times. Our civilisations were born with language and writing, and before that we emitted sounds and drew pictures. What is the second, deeper and more intimate revolution we are experiencing? The Internet and computer language (code). In this new stage in the transformation of civilisations, what the printing press brought in the 15th century, i.e. the ability for everyone to read and transmit information with greater speed, will be brought about by artificial intelligence. When everyone can programme and create applications easily thanks to AI, we will be able to live through a new era of renaissance. The premises are there, and these new tools will certainly be mainstream in a few years' time.

Humanity 3.0

To conclude, globally we are experiencing two changes, one in writing (accounting) and one in language (computing). These two changes, which add up to the previous ones and transform our societies, form a whole, solid, liquid and gaseous, that of humanity 3.0.
With this vaporisation, if we include in the same economic ecosystem everything that makes up our planet in material, immaterial and spiritual terms, from raw materials to the different forms of life on earth and in the air, then we will have a way of optimising all our exchanges.

Matthieu Chassagne

Tokenomics specialist

Passionate about general economics and philosophy