At the moment, Smart Contracts are largely the domain of software programmers, and the vast majority of the real-world are bewildered and suspicious of the concept of ‘Smart Contracts’. This has enabled Lawyers and Consultants to extract outsized fees for ensuring the Smart Contract program meets legal requirements. This is a great adoption disincentive for most businesses, particularly, small-to-midsized businesses that constitute more than 90% of global economic activity. The explosion in their use in DApps without legal consultation has led to and will lead to increased litigation for those developers.
The great news is arriving soon! I forecast a revolution is about to be unleashed in the mass adoption of Smart Contracts across all sectors of the economy once Marlowe is deployed on mainnet with samples of real-world Business applications that are applicable to all sizes of Businesses. However, I think, the real success of Marlow will be in the mundane Business-as-usual contracts that can be applied by Businesses for their Intra-Business (internal) services to eliminate administrative and legal overheads, B2B and B2C . It is here where the imagination of Businesses will explode as they discover the exponential benefits of Smart Contracts for increasing efficiencies while minimising administrative overheads.
For those old enough, remember the Office Secretaries occupying an entire floor in some large companies? Gone. Remember, Data Processing centres that processed cheques and Business documents? Gone or massively downsized all thanks to computers, automation, cloud services and electronic payments direct to Bank Accounts and digital wallets.
Why will Marlowe cause this greatly underestimated revolution? As the saying goes “A picture is worth a thousand words” and Lego is and has been the most popular construction set in history. Nothing beats the beautiful simplicity belying the underlying complexity of creating complex objects by simply moving modular pieces. This is what made Windows 3.0 Graphical User Interface (GUI) smash the dominance of DOS operating interface. It meant anyone without any knowledge of computer programming was able to run complex programs by clicking icons, dropdown selections and by dragging and dropping icons.
Marlowe, which is a “Lego” based ( Legofication ) approach to Smart Contract construction will mean that anyone who understands components required for a legally acceptable contract will be able to write a Smart Contract without writing a single line of code. By using the power of moveable Lego like objects to assemble a visual image of a contract.
Marlowe will singularly do for Cardano Smart Contract adoption what Windows 3.0 did for Microsoft against DOS.
So, the challenge for the Marlowe development team is to make their Blockly components both ‘fun, intuitive, and colourful’ for the users. Once the users get the basics, they will do what users always know best; dump the cumbersome code methods currently available in Solidity-based Smart Contracts. It will be a “no-brainer” and so natural to use Marlowe so. I imagine, there will be thousands of Marlowe created contracts available for a small fee by those who just love the challenge of playing with Lego type objects which result in real world applications. There will be Smart Contracts created as part of College and University Law and Business courses. Even homebased board games to challenge and entertain. A bright future for some really creative and powerful Smart Contracts that will save $1000s in Consulting and Legal fees.
I would forecast that by December 2021, Marlowe would be the ‘ Go to place for Smart Contracts production ’ for companies wanting standard Smart Contracts for Business operations. For mid-sized and large companies who want more complex Smart Contracts, obviously, Plutus will be there for them…will still need lawyers for these ones, though.
References from IOG (IOHK):
Want Marlowe Tutorial? : Marlowe Tutorial
Want great examples? watch these by Stoic Pool:
Want to have a play with Marlowe?: https://alpha.marlowe.iohkdev.io/#/
Want to read serious research? Marlowe: implementing and analysing financial contracts on blockchain - IOHK Research
** Other articles by Stevod