Time travel back to last year and you’ll find there was a common belief going around among bitcoin price watchers. The idea was that bitcoin, and the rest of crypto too, Ethereum and the altcoins that rise and fall in sync with bitcoin, were in the process of repeating what had happened in 2017.

According to that reading, bitcoin was to go parabolic at the end of 2021, resulting in a spectacular blow off the top just as it had four years earlier. Except that this time we were scaled up, and so the new peak we were due to hit would be several orders higher than the almost 20K attained four years prior.

Depending on who you listened to, that would be well over 100K, and you could find predictions going up as high as 250K to 300K per bitcoin.

If you got caught up in the clamour it started to look like a certainty, there was no shortage of technical analysis to back such views up, and enthusiasm was high. But, when it came time, it didn’t happen.

This is not to say that crypto didn’t have a spectacularly good year, because it absolutely did. Bitcoin reached highs close to 70K, altcoins hit new highs too, and NFT trading was through the roof. But, bitcoin's peaks came sooner than the model had predicted, and there was no end-of-year moon-rocket.

And, that’s relevant to the next part of what was supposed to happen. Four years earlier, bitcoin’s parabolic run, and that of the altcoins that followed, had been followed by a crypto Armageddon, as 2018 collapsed into the prolonged and deathly crypto winter.

Back then, the excesses were followed by a brutal reversal, and the dark days continued for well over a year, a time when many of 2017’s new entrants to the bitcoin ride lost interest entirely, while those who stuck around became cynical in the wilderness.

And, so according to last year’s crypto crystal ball readers, just as 2021 was to echo 2017, we were also in for a 2022 hangover to match that of 2018. And, even despite 2021 not playing out as forecast, there has still been a lingering feeling that 2022 should plunge the depths in a 2018-esque manner.

Perhaps a kind of crypto PTSD has afflicted those who were slammed down to earth in 2018. And yet, up to now, while 2022 has seen sudden drops in bitcoin’s price, and we're way down on last year's highs, surveying the landscape towards the end of Q1 it bears very little resemblance to four years ago.

From a crypto point of view, it feels like a different world. And, from a non-crypto perspective too, the world seems less familiar, as macro events continue to deliver one unreal shock after another.

Remarkably, regardless of price, the crypto space in 2022 is playing a meaningful role in multiple areas of the public arena. It is present in the gravest, most serious events taking place around the world, and simultaneously, it’s a driving force in what some people might erroneously regard to be frivolous matters.

So, with regard to the former, the big events, Bitcoin and other crypto networks enter into discussions around banking mechanisms, sanctions against Russia and the practicalities of moving funds around in a hostile zone.

Bitcoin, not so long ago, was dismissed as something akin to a hobby project, or simply a scam, and yet within just a few years, it’s a noteworthy factor in the geo-political discussion.

And then, regarding matters at the other end of the scale, we have the worlds of art, music and gaming. And within those areas, we again find crypto, this time in the form of NFTs and the various native tokens that can provide liquidity within games and proposed metaverses.

And, although these things might be dismissed as playful, they’re actually of great significance. Or rather, they’re of great significance because they’re playful and engaging.

Real social change emanates from organic behavioural changes, and those kinds of alterations have cultural origins. So when the culture shifts, whatever lies downstream had better be prepared for change too. And, by the way, as culture is the source, then everything is downstream.

Does it matter that bitcoin is, in fact, the viable financial alternative its advocates and devotees have always claimed? That seems certain. And, does it matter that art and social transactions are becoming digital and happening on increasingly robust and efficient blockchains? The significance may be less immediately obvious, but it would be as myopic to dismiss these changes as it was, previously, to dismiss Bitcoin.

And, one more thing to note is in what kind of an era these changes are occurring. We’re not standing on safe ground in a period of stability. By contrast, there is a feeling in the air that established ways of doing things have become disconcertingly insubstantial. Facts of life that were previously taken for granted, about the international order, rights and freedoms, and the relationship between citizens and their governments, are suddenly not so clear cut.

And, behind it all, behind even the screaming military tumult, is the growing realization that a global financial crisis may be in play and that where there is chaos, there is the opportunity for transitions to occur.

And, what incredible timing, as it appears, through the emergence of Bitcoin and the blockchains that have followed, that there are hopeful, constructive alternatives being utilized right now, and to which we can migrate.

Time travel back to last year and you’ll find there was a common belief going around among bitcoin price watchers. The idea was that bitcoin, and the rest of crypto too, Ethereum and the altcoins that rise and fall in sync with bitcoin, were in the process of repeating what had happened in 2017.

According to that reading, bitcoin was to go parabolic at the end of 2021, resulting in a spectacular blow off the top just as it had four years earlier. Except that this time we were scaled up, and so the new peak we were due to hit would be several orders higher than the almost 20K attained four years prior.

Depending on who you listened to, that would be well over 100K, and you could find predictions going up as high as 250K to 300K per bitcoin.

If you got caught up in the clamour it started to look like a certainty, there was no shortage of technical analysis to back such views up, and enthusiasm was high. But, when it came time, it didn’t happen.

This is not to say that crypto didn’t have a spectacularly good year, because it absolutely did. Bitcoin reached highs close to 70K, altcoins hit new highs too, and NFT trading was through the roof. But, bitcoin's peaks came sooner than the model had predicted, and there was no end-of-year moon-rocket.

And, that’s relevant to the next part of what was supposed to happen. Four years earlier, bitcoin’s parabolic run, and that of the altcoins that followed, had been followed by a crypto Armageddon, as 2018 collapsed into the prolonged and deathly crypto winter.

Back then, the excesses were followed by a brutal reversal, and the dark days continued for well over a year, a time when many of 2017’s new entrants to the bitcoin ride lost interest entirely, while those who stuck around became cynical in the wilderness.

And, so according to last year’s crypto crystal ball readers, just as 2021 was to echo 2017, we were also in for a 2022 hangover to match that of 2018. And, even despite 2021 not playing out as forecast, there has still been a lingering feeling that 2022 should plunge the depths in a 2018-esque manner.

Perhaps a kind of crypto PTSD has afflicted those who were slammed down to earth in 2018. And yet, up to now, while 2022 has seen sudden drops in bitcoin’s price, and we're way down on last year's highs, surveying the landscape towards the end of Q1 it bears very little resemblance to four years ago.

From a crypto point of view, it feels like a different world. And, from a non-crypto perspective too, the world seems less familiar, as macro events continue to deliver one unreal shock after another.

Remarkably, regardless of price, the crypto space in 2022 is playing a meaningful role in multiple areas of the public arena. It is present in the gravest, most serious events taking place around the world, and simultaneously, it’s a driving force in what some people might erroneously regard to be frivolous matters.

So, with regard to the former, the big events, Bitcoin and other crypto networks enter into discussions around banking mechanisms, sanctions against Russia and the practicalities of moving funds around in a hostile zone.

Bitcoin, not so long ago, was dismissed as something akin to a hobby project, or simply a scam, and yet within just a few years, it’s a noteworthy factor in the geo-political discussion.

And then, regarding matters at the other end of the scale, we have the worlds of art, music and gaming. And within those areas, we again find crypto, this time in the form of NFTs and the various native tokens that can provide liquidity within games and proposed metaverses.

And, although these things might be dismissed as playful, they’re actually of great significance. Or rather, they’re of great significance because they’re playful and engaging.

Real social change emanates from organic behavioural changes, and those kinds of alterations have cultural origins. So when the culture shifts, whatever lies downstream had better be prepared for change too. And, by the way, as culture is the source, then everything is downstream.

Does it matter that bitcoin is, in fact, the viable financial alternative its advocates and devotees have always claimed? That seems certain. And, does it matter that art and social transactions are becoming digital and happening on increasingly robust and efficient blockchains? The significance may be less immediately obvious, but it would be as myopic to dismiss these changes as it was, previously, to dismiss Bitcoin.

And, one more thing to note is in what kind of an era these changes are occurring. We’re not standing on safe ground in a period of stability. By contrast, there is a feeling in the air that established ways of doing things have become disconcertingly insubstantial. Facts of life that were previously taken for granted, about the international order, rights and freedoms, and the relationship between citizens and their governments, are suddenly not so clear cut.

And, behind it all, behind even the screaming military tumult, is the growing realization that a global financial crisis may be in play and that where there is chaos, there is the opportunity for transitions to occur.

And, what incredible timing, as it appears, through the emergence of Bitcoin and the blockchains that have followed, that there are hopeful, constructive alternatives being utilized right now, and to which we can migrate.