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Maybe There's a Use for Crypto After All


Considering crypto.

On a basic level, Helium is a decentralized wireless network for “Internet of Things” devices, powered by cryptocurrency.

Credit: Beatrice Sala

One of the most frequent questions asked by crypto skeptics is: What can you actually do with crypto, besides financial speculation and crimes?

It's a tough question to answer, in part because most of the successful (and legal) uses of cryptocurrency so far have been in finance or finance-adjacent fields. There are plenty of crypto exchanges, NFT trading platforms and video games that involve buying and selling crypto tokens. But so far, not many crypto projects have had what I'd call "normie utility" — solving problems that exist for people outside the crypto world, that aren't primarily about buying or selling digital assets and that would be impossible to solve with normal, non-crypto technology.

Recently, though, I discovered one that does.

It's called Helium. And while it's not the most attention-grabbing crypto project out there — no cartoon apes or copies of the Constitution are involved — trying it out has helped me understand how crypto can be quite useful in solving certain types of problems.

From The New York Times
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