The advent of blockchain technology has forever changed the digital landscape as we know it. And while the revolution may not actually be televised, it could be said it will be digitized. One notable beneficiary of the blockchain has been smart contracts. First conceived back in 1994 by legal scholar and cryptographer Nick Szabo, the concept had to be put on ice for more than a decade because there wasn’t a viable platform to enforce it. That is until now.

With the meteoric rise of Ethereum, smart contracts are steadily gaining traction and credibility in the crypto community. But what exactly are they? Quite simply, smart contracts are protocols used to facilitate the automated performance of a contract. In essence, they are programmable transactions which eliminate expensive and slow intermediaries. Small wonder why they’re becoming so popular.

Programmed with Turing complete language (You saw The Imitation Game, right?), smart contracts are safe and reliable. The execution of a smart contract is all about its precision. In addition to lowering the costs of operating a business, smart contracts also greatly reduce the risk of committing costly mistakes. And it’s why developers are flocking in record numbers to get their hands on Ethereum.

Perhaps the most attractive feature of a smart contract is how it cuts through the red tape of the court system. The arduous, grueling legal battles that typify contract disputes are a thing of the past once you start utilizing smart contracts. Since the parties are bound to the agreed upon conditions and clauses of a smart contract, there are no longer any legal gray areas that leave your business vulnerable to the vultures of litigation.

Functioning on the decentralized blockchain network, smart contracts have the added advantage of being completely transparent. In other words, no one can pull a fast one on you because every transaction is recorded on a public ledger. That means your buddy will never be able to renege on a sports bet again. The smart money is on smart contracts. When it comes to Ethereum and smart contracts, Big Brother isn’t watching you; you’re looking out for yourself. And in a free market what could be better than that?

Josh Borenstein

Josh Borenstein is a staff writer for ETHNews Read More
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