Based in Frankfurt, Germany, Oliver Naegele is an Engineer who is married with 3 kids. Oliver is currently working on Digital Identities with his company Blockchain HELIX, leading the FinTech Community of Germany as the Founder of FinTech Headquarter. Having spoken at many blockchain conferences throughout the world, Oliver defines himself as a Blockchain activist and Data Architect. As a Founding member of the German Blockchain Association, the blockchain community has deemed one of the top Blockchain & FinTech Influencers.
Favorite quote: Identity is the intersection between what a person wants to be, and what the world allows it to be.
Now that we covered a little background about Oliver, let’s dive into the interview:
What are you working on? How did you come up with this idea?
Blockchain HELIX is an Identity Platform to overcome the problem of anonymity vs. freedom in the internet. With our HELIX ID you get a legally trusted Identity that you can use for any kind of transaction, onboarding, age restriction proof and you can use it to build your own Digital Home.
We take care of regulatory, GDPR, PSD2 and legal commandments and we operate with a secure APP to let you keep control of all your valuable personal data. As we have build it as an Identity Platform, we open a door for a whole Blockchain ecosystem like IoT, Healthcare, Supply Chain, Data Services, Smart Home, eGovernment with the help of interoperability.
When did you first hear about the blockchain and what made you realize its potential and how long have you been interested in this technology?
I noticed Bitcoin a long time ago but was not very attracted by the currency idea in first hand. I have been working with different concepts of P2P and PKI. The rise of Ethereum in the very early days and the idea behind it set me on fire. I realized the potential for a lot of unsolved problems in the internet very soon.
If you had to be long in one, BTC or ETH, which would it be and why?
As a currency, I believe Bitcoin has more potential. I had Andreas M. Antonopoulos at one of our last MeetUps talking about Bitcoin and it is far more mature as it has less functionality that might fail. From a technology point of view with the upcoming ICOs, we will see a lot of volatility and rise of ETH.
Favorite alt coin?
Our own to be defined Helix-Token.
It is time for a HELIX-Token to have a way to deal with Digital Identities
Explain the technology behind this coin as you understand it
The Token can be used in between different industry partner to trade Identity Data. All with the permission of the user. This trade of KYC (Know Your Customer) Data is one of the main needs in the financial industry and beyond.
What is your opinion of Proof of Stake versus Proof of Work?
It simply depends on the use case. I am more a fan of Proof of Stake as the waste of energy with the proof of work is simply massive. As I am dealing a lot with so called Consortia- or Federated-Chains, I like the scalability of a Proof of Authority. Proof of Work on the other hand is a safe harbour for public Blockchains.
Will the Ethereum hard fork be good/bad?
I guess that is simply not the question. It was a reaction to an uncontrolled situation and we see right now with the classification from the SEC that says that the DAO is considered as securities, that we are dealing with a regulated and legal framework. From a pure Blockchain approach to weaken the trust in immutability is something bad. But I would have done it exactly the same way.
What’s your opinion on the current “civil war” within the Bitcoin community?
The Bitcoin community is huge and there are so many interest groups from miners to users and technology enthusiasts. I like the way to fight about the best way and I am curious if we will see a fork. In my opinion, the SegWit2x compromise is a good one. I still leaves a lot of space for improvements but it covers most of the actual problems.
I see another problem that is bigger. It is about the trust from the financial industry into Blockchain as they fear nothing more than uncertainty. They do not care about the technology and the concept. They simply want a 100% stable and trustful network and they are frightened of what is going on there as they already was with the halving discussion. This leads to even more volatility and more gambling. What it needs is governance, even if it is organized decentralized as well. Blockchain and Bitcoin need to make the next step into mainstream technology.
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