HPC and AI on Wall Street: Panel Discussion on Blockchain and Cryptocurrencies

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HPC and AI on Wall Street Conference

At the recent HPC and AI on Wall Street conference, I moderated a panel on Cryptocurrencies and Blockchain. Panelists included Ryan Quick of Providentia Worldwide, Asha Dakshi of AlphaPoint, Eric Simone of ClearBlade, and Dan Simerman of the IOTA Foundation. Thanks to Jem Pagan of BluSky Consulting who is Program Chair for the conference and organized the session.

HPC and AI on Wall Street has been a tradition in New York City for a number of years. It’s a unique occasion to discuss the impact and future of financial services and computing. AI is increasingly associated with High Performance Computing because HPC has dealt with massive amount of data for decades and it is also driving Deep Learning (DL), the approach that has revitalized AI. Read our paper on HPC and AI here.

The conference content was excellent, the kind where you don’t want to miss any of the talks/panels. And the sponsoring vendors covered a lot of interesting technologies.

We had a lively conversation on my panel and received excellent feedback from the audience and on social media.

What you see below is more or less what I posed to the panel.  They are meant to get the discussion going and provide different perspectives for the audience. They worked well and  I think they are a good top-10 set right now so feel free to use them or redistribute.

Top-10 Topics to Discuss at a Crypto/Blockchain Panel

  1. Why? What’s the big deal?
    • In two sentences, what’s the big deal with blockchain/crypto?
    • Is Crypto a revolution or a fad?
    • For Wall Street, is Crypto an opportunity or a threat?
    • When do you know you need to use Blockchain?
  2. Blockchain or Crypto?
    • Can you separate Crypto from Blockchain? Is it still useful if you do?
  3. ICOs
    • Is Crypto the new way to fund things? Will the SEC and other regulators let it?
    • Can you separate utility tokens from security tokens or they always kind of blurry?
  4. Political Support
    • What countries or states do you see buying into the whole thing in a big way?
  5. Libra
    • What about Libra and CBDCs? Will Libra happen?
    • How are Central Bank Digital Currencies different?
    • Is it really a war with central banks that some people think it is?
  6. Apps
    • What is missing in the Crypto/Blockchain software stack?
    • Why are the Crypto/Blockchain apps still so hard to use?
    • Blockchain/Crypto and IoT. Why do you need to combine the two?
    • Besides Crypto exchanges and wallets, what killer apps do you see?
  7. Security
    • When do we give up?! When do we go from “best practices” to something more definitive?
    • Is quantum-safe cryptography something we need to hurry up and do or do we have time? How much time?
  8. Other Coins
    • Do other coins have a shot outside of permissoned walled gardens?
    • In which case, do they really need to be on a blockchain?
  9. Digital Assets
    • What can we expect in digital assets and especially non-fungible tokens (NFTs)?
  10. Smart Contracts
    • What about smart contracts? Can they go beyond simple instructions and approach the sophistication of program trading or actual legal contracts?

The HPC and AI on Wall Street conference goes to Singapore next in April 2020 before heading back to NYC next fall. We (OrionX) are looking forward to being there.

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