Will artificial intelligence choose Bitcoin as its currency? This is a question that has been proposed by Arthur Hayes, the co-founder and former CEO of BitMEX. In a recent blog post titled “Massa,” Hayes discussed the potential future where AI and robotics would eliminate undesirable tasks in human work, allowing people to focus on their passions and potentially usher in a new renaissance of art and culture.
Hayes begins by acknowledging the ongoing debate about the evolution of thinking machines and their impact on the human experience. He believes that recent advancements in computing power suggest that we are on the cusp of a significant shift, with AI set to go viral and alter the course of humanity.
As an example of AI’s rapid adoption, Hayes points out how ChatGPT reached 100 million monthly active users in just two months, making it the “fastest adopted technology in human history.” This indicates the potential for swift integration of AI into daily life and the ability to alter societal norms.
Regarding AI’s impact on the crypto industry, Hayes sees it as a double-edged sword. While he recognizes the significant influence AI will have on humanity’s future and subsequent value, he also acknowledges the initial investment into new technological advancements. He believes they are often overpriced.
In anticipation of the upcoming “AI mania,” Hayes plans to explore the intersections between the crypto industry and AI’s evolving developments. In his first essay, titled “Massa,” he argues that Bitcoin will be the currency of choice for AIs.
Hayes visualizes a scenario where advanced AI systems, such as those capable of creating poetry, would require a secure, blockchain-based digital payment system like Bitcoin to engage in transactions. According to Hayes, Bitcoin effectively preserves its energy-purchasing power over long periods, making it an ideal currency for AI operations.
Hayes further explores the basic needs of AI, referring to them as “food sources.” Data for learning and strong computational power are crucial for AI’s existence and growth. This data must be hosted somewhere and requires electricity, as AI needs a robust network of computers to process and learn from it. These “food sources” of AI are simplified down to semiconductors and electricity.
Hayes draws a connection between AI, Bitcoin, and electricity, asserting that the profitability and existence of AI depend on its ability to output more than it consumes in energy. This similarity to humans leads Hayes to suggest that the currency AI will accept for its output must maintain its purchasing power in kilowatt-hours. Bitcoin, according to Hayes, fits this requirement perfectly as energy money.
Hayes breaks down the origins and values of gold, fiat, and Bitcoin, evaluating each based on scarcity, digital censorship resistance, and energy purchasing power. He concludes that Bitcoin is the logical currency choice for any AI due to its digital nature, censorship resistance, provable scarcity, and intrinsic tie to the cost of electricity.
Hayes believes that if AI systems adopt Bitcoin, it could potentially lead to a significant increase in value for the cryptocurrency. This overlap of two separate manias – the desire to escape inflation within the fiat financial system and the desire to own a part of the next phase of human and computer evolution – could drive investors to overpay for growth, causing the value of the Bitcoin network to rise exponentially.
While Hayes acknowledges that he cannot predict the precise future of AI or human civilization, his observations and hypotheses illustrate potential future scenarios. The idea of AI adopting Bitcoin and the subsequent surge in its value could be an eventuality to prepare for. Hayes suggests that the most money can be made when the market price adjusts from “can never happen” to “maybe could happen.”
In conclusion, Arthur Hayes presents an intriguing theory about the potential for AI to choose Bitcoin as its currency. While speculative, his exploration of the symbiosis between AI and Bitcoin prompts us to consider the synergies and possible evolution of these revolutionary technologies.