Ripple’s CTO, David Schwartz took a public stand at the “Blockchain Beyond the Hype: The Ripple Effect” session at SXSW on 14 March 2019. The Chief Technical Officer of Ripple is blockchain enthusiast but at the same time a humble innovator.
According to Schwartz, “the internet was a powerful force for good in democratizing the flow of information and today control of the flow of funds” is used in the same way it was before the internet. Hence, there is a lot of space for growth in it.
He was “very optimistic with the technology,” nevertheless, accepted the fact that Ripple’s use case is currently focused only on enabling international payments.
How Is Ripple Different Than Bitcoin and SWIFT
According to Schwartz, Jed McCaleb’s idea of finding an alternative to Proof of Work (PoW) for avoiding double spent was the ‘secret sauce’ for Ripple. He envisioned establishing a new open ledger on Blockchain that would be more efficient than Bitcoin and could integrate with the existing financial system.
Schwartz made interesting comparisons of the current payment system provided by SWIFT with the RippleNet. With the SWIFT payment network the path of the transfer of funds cannot be determined, and so fees of sending transactions are high and variable. He cited that RippleNet and SWIFT Networks are fundamentally different.
According to him, Ripple is building the foundation of a “payment system” which connects the banks together. While xRapid with XRP will be used as a settlement layer on top of the system.
He also cited that Paypal and Venmo are examples of “democratic payment systems, but they don’t interoperate.” Hence, they currently providing the database to banks and other financial institutions to make use of the payment system; the actual transfer of funds can occur at a later time.