The Best Methods to Understand Blockchain Technology if You’re Not A Developer
As a non-technical person, it feels like it takes 1.21 gigawatts to keep up with the speed of technology - even Doc Brown himself couldn't have predicted all of the technological advancements with his flux capacitor. Not only are we trying to keep up with technologies like blockchain, machine learning, and AI, but we have an overwhelming amount of information on the web all at the click of a mouse. It's overwhelming to the point that it's difficult to even know where to begin. However, online blockchain educational materials have started to ramp up. As I write this, I'm confident I'll start seeing “ Blockchain for dummies” online course advertisements on my browser (Opt-in, of course, because I'm using Brave). Mind-blowing! Let me help you begin by slowing down in order to speed up effectively.
So you're someone who's not technical that wants to learn blockchain - great! Whether you're technical or non-technical isn't necessarily contingent on understanding an emerging technology like blockchain. Rather it's how you position yourself in the marketplace where you'll start to see the fruits of your labor.
Human to human chit chatting¶
First things first, human to human interaction is where you want to start and it's awesome! Yes, YouTube will always be there for you - or at least until your battery dies, but dialoguing with another person and in this case, someone well-versed in blockchain will lay a strong foundation to springboard yourself into understanding this industry. I hate to use the phrase “trust me,” but trust me, as someone who's not that technical and has a background in Kinesiology, I can assure you that learning from the great minds of my Truffle developers has helped me grasp the concepts of blockchain technology. I'll say, most folks that are experts in their field generally have no problem chatting with a hungry and curious mind. If anything, it's flattering when I get approached to explain blockchain to someone who desires to understand it. We're gifted with the ability to use analogies and other practical ways of explanations that can make light of things that often feel dark and hard to see. Check out this great analogy on sharding!
Guess what? Developers don't mind talking to non-technical people who are trying to understand a particular technology like blockchain. It's a ridiculous stereotype to think devs only like to chat with other devs. If that were the case, how could a business be run successfully? In fact, oftentimes the best explanations come from the top experts. Developers don't like jargon or complexity either. We even gave the term developer operations a cute little nickname like DevOps. Seek out the developer in the blockchain space and ask away...better yet, reach out to one of us at Truffle–we love our community!
Go to your local blockchain meetups. There's probably more than a few that are available for you to attend. Meetups can be two-fold, namely, one to obtain knowledge and the other for networking, which can sometimes lead to a job. I can't tell you how many times I've hired someone that I initially met at a meetup. It sure beats throwing your resume on a job board hoping that it will stick. Relationships become the most valuable asset you can have to aid in your next employment opportunity. Moreover, everyone at a meetup shares one common trait. A passion for blockchain.
Maybe you're a little shy and don't want to network (although I highly recommend it!). There's a myriad of resources available online to learn the underpinnings of blockchain technology. You can visit our Truffle University page for more information taking our courses. If you like to learn through watching other people's conversations, Twitter is the place to go. You can make your way over to Quora if you have specific questions about blockchain. Don't want people to know who you are, Reddit has phenomenal ELI5 (explain it like I'm 5) explanations.
Read a Book¶
Some people enjoy a nice old fashion book. By far the best book to understand blockchain is Mastering Bitcoin and Mastering Ethereum by Andreas Antonopoulos.
Listening to a Podcast is great. Especially when you're on the go. It's a way to redeem your commute to work, get through a workout session, or just something to pass the time. Often times, podcast hosts will have guest in the blockchain space to give an objective perspective on what the challenges and successes are with the technology.
Finally, and I may be a little bias, but if you really want to increase the pace at which you can comprehend blockchain then go to TruffleCon! Come say hi to all of us at Truffle. Come say hello to all of the speakers and blockchain company representatives. Ask us questions. Let us help you understand blockchain better. Let's network. Let's have a relationship that will enable amicability. Or better yet, let's interop with each other to leverage the power of blockchain for careers, security, and better transparency in an ever-growing technological world, one node at a time.