'I'd recommend the Intro to Infrastructure course to people in the oil industry who want to get a better understanding of what Bitcoin's for. But I think it's a bit highly technical for a general audience.'
In December 2021, the Bitcoin SV Academy launched an introductory level course to Bitcoin Infrastructure. Having already completed the introduction to Bitcoin Theory and Bitcoin development courses, Patrick Mockridge was quick to sign up and complete the certified introduction to Bitcoin Infrastructure course.
Bitcoin Association’s Liz Louw caught up with him for his feedback on the introduction to Bitcoin Infrastructure course, so you can decide if this is the right one for you.
Patrick reflects on his journey from chemical engineering to studying at the Bitcoin SV Academy
Patrick’s professional background
Patrick spent a significant part of his career doing chemical engineering, and yet the scope of his personal and career interests have broadened significantly. How would he describe himself? 'Someone who's been working at the intersection of engineering like real world meets space engineering and blockchain technology.'
He references Vinay Guptu and Jessi Baker for being good at describing how information is lost in supply chains of consumer goods and how blockchain technology can address some of these challenges. Whereas for Patrick, the use case that captivates him is how blockchain can secure people competence and engineering documentation.
Patrick’s interest in people in engineering sets him apart from most people in blockchain - those who are finance-focussed. 'I think these are the two biggest, most interesting markets for blockchain, and I don't meet many people like me who are exploring that space.'
From chemical engineering to blockchain
How does one transition from chemical engineering to learning about blockchain? Patrick has discovered the potential that lies at the intersection of these two fields. He describes the journey from engineering, to blockchain as financial tool, to discovering BSV as global computer, in the vein of Buckminster Fuller and Nikola Tesla’s vision:
‘Growing up as a millennial, I had always been interested in how and why our current financial system messes things up.’ Back when he started his career as a safety engineer in the oil industry, he witnessed how portfolio managers from the financial industry would define the business strategy for oil companies.
'By the time 15 layers of management had interpreted this strategy, the person on the drill floor is left with an impossible set of constraints.' Patrick sees this as one of the systemic problems that lead to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. 'That's no way to run anything.' Naturally, blockchain's ability to secure supply chains and data management systems occurred to him as a potential solution.
From crypto to the BSV blockchain
As a result of the problems he espied in the financial system and petrochemical data management, Patrick started reading economics, philosophy - particularly Austrian economic stuff - which led him to Bitcoin. 'I was involved in some Ethereum projects, and advised on the Enjin coin project,working with Blockhouse Venture Capital on a proposed ICO for a while.' His involvement in the heart of the blockchain industry taught him that most projects are just hype. ‘There's a lot of drifting. I thought at least there might be one per cent good going on, but there's not even that.’
Patrick has encountered many a crypto project that overpromise on their solutions. ‘There's a project with deep history in decentralised computing dating back to the 1990s that is focussed on doing some quite fancy things with object capabilities and extensive smart contract complexity. But they've been promising these things since 2016 and they still haven't delivered.’
No wonder that the BTC vs BCH vs BSV debate sounded to him like more of the same crypto rubbish. Fortunately, some friends of his were involved in the community incubator, Decentral Vancouver, and they recommended that Patrick look into Ryan X Charles and look further into Bitcoin SV.
Once he had watched some of Craig Wright and Ryan X Charles' presentations and podcasts he realised that they were definitely on to something. 'I think it's a well engineered system. I like how you think about it as infrastructure. I like how it's scalable. I like how it can be parallelised. I like that BSV is not just focussing on using Bitcoin as a financial tool, but has a vision of it as a global computer like Buckminster Fuller or Nikola Tesla had. Proof-of-work gives it a solid value proposition. And then there's all the engineering-related use cases...' It ticked all of his boxes, so he decided to look into it some more.
Blockchain's engineering use cases had been apparent to him for a while, but it was only when he discovered BSV that he saw an infrastructure to realise his vision. ‘With BSV you can implement a whole lot of multi-billion dollar use cases right now! I think that's what sets it apart. It's good to go for a lot of use cases already, whereas most of the rest of the market is making claims that they're not fulfilling.'
Why the Bitcoin SV Academy
Once Patrick discovered BSV’s potential, he started looking for a source to help ‘declutter Bitcoin SV’. Patrick had a very specific use case in mind, which is using GIT as a layer on top of blockchain to manage engineering documentation on professional competency. 'I have a very specific idea of blockchain technology's value for managing salient and important data. And I think this sort of BSV fits nicely into the picture of that.'
Patrick’s educational foundation and skillset
Apart from the FSJS Tech and MIChemE degrees he’s attained, Patrick has completed Udacity's data science, A.I. and robotics courses (he estimates them to be at least at master's level) before starting with Bitcoin SV Academy’s courses. He’s been invited to speak to master's students about software simulation at his local university, Aberystwyth, so they could learn a bit more about plugging hardware together.
‘I'm sort of a jack of all trades, but if you give me a code base and let me go through it all, I'll be able to pick it up eventually and run with it.'