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Bitcoin — The Natural Choice For Artificial Intelligence

AI agents will need to use money and Bitcoin is the best money for the job. This results in Bitcoin both benefiting AI and benefiting from AI.

Tomer Strolight
Tomer Strolight
Aug 14, 2023August 14, 20234 min read4 minutes read

OpenAI’s ChatGPT reached over 100 million users within 2 months making it one of the fastest growing apps in history. 

By comparison, it took Instagram 30 months and TikTok 9 months to reach the same milestone. 

What is ChatGPT? It’s a chat interface built on top of a large language model (LLM) which allows users to ask questions, and the AI answers instantly. If you haven’t already, it’s worth playing around with

ChatGPT is just one of many. 

AI tools are rapidly advancing and specializing. They can already write, generate images, conduct research, offer advice, analyze documents, and more. New applications are being discovered every day, while existing ones continue to improve. 

In the near future, we’ll have access to personal AI assistants who will know our individual hopes and needs. They’ll perform general tasks, such as scheduling appointments, ordering groceries, planning vacations, canceling Netflix subscriptions, and writing some code. 

Ok, How is This Related to Bitcoin?

Bitcoin already impacts today’s largest institutions, including banking, energy, and government

We believe Bitcoin will play a significant role in the growing Artificial Intelligence industry as well. Let’s dig in. 

AI Agents Will Need Money to Complete Their Tasks

AI requires a significant amount of computing power today. Asking ChatGPT a single question is estimated to incur 36 cents in computing costs

Of course, our AI assistants will do much more than just answer our questions. They’ll also be handling many of our annoying chores. To be effective, they will need to pay for storage, computing resources, internet bandwidth, and more. 

Not to mention your personal AI assistant will likely need to hire specialist AI agents to perform niche tasks, such as creating a new website for your side hustle. 

Consequently, AI Agents will require money to fulfill our requests. 

Bitcoin is the perfect money for AI agents

There are at least three requirements for money used by an AI agent.

  • Permissionless — AI agents aren’t people and don’t have identities 

  • Instant settlement — AI agents need to instantly allocate resources without the risk of chargeback

  • Micropayments — AI agents need to send tiny fractions of a cent in real time (streaming money) 

What could possibly work better as money for AI agents than Bitcoin? 

Bitcoin is permissionless. It is a bearer asset and requires no identity, so AI agents can autonomously send and receive it. In contrast, fiat money is debt-based which means it requires an identity to use. Fiat money excludes machines and many people (over 1b humans are unbanked today).

Bitcoin sent over the Lightning Network settles instantly. In order to unlock maximum value from AI agents, they will need to negotiate and pay instantly for resources they need. Fiat money takes days to settle and chargeback fraud happens at an alarming rate. 

Bitcoin can send micropayments over the Lightning Network. For example, the artist Cryptograffiti sold some digital art for one “milli-satoshi” worth $0.000000037 over the Lightning Network. Fiat money has extremely high fixed costs and cannot be used for micropayments. 

Fiat money is simply too slow, expensive to transact, cumbersome, unreliable, geographically constrained, and restricted for the needs of an AI agent.

It’s almost as if Bitcoin was explicitly made for a world of AI agents that need to engage in commerce with each other.

The Future is Already Here, it’s Just Not Evenly Distributed

This idea of AI agents paying each other to accomplish tasks isn’t far-fetched.

In fact, Lightning Labs recently released a set of tools that will allow OpenAI to integrate with Bitcoin and Lightning payments. This would enable ChatGPT to send and receive payments from various services worldwide. 

There are already examples of people instructing ChatGPT to make purchases using Lightning.

If you squint hard enough, you can almost see a world with millions of autonomous AI agents processing billions of transactions every day with Bitcoin. 

Buy Bitcoin Before the Machines Do

Bitcoin is money native to the internet — as are AI agents. 

AI agents will need to use money and Bitcoin is the best money for the job. This results in Bitcoin both benefiting AI and benefiting from AI. 

If AI comes anywhere near realizing its potential, Bitcoin holders will be rewarded handsomely. 

Front-run the machines by buying some Bitcoin today.

Tomer Strolight

Tomer Strolight

Tomer Strolight is Editor-in-Chief at Swan Bitcoin. He completed bachelors and masters degrees at Toronto’s Schulich School of Business. Tomer spent 25 years operating businesses in digital media and private equity before turning his attention full time to Bitcoin. Tomer wrote the book “Why Bitcoin?” a collection of 27 short articles each explaining a different facet of this revolutionary new monetary system. Tomer also wrote and narrated the short film “Bitcoin Is Generational Wealth”. He has appeared on many Bitcoin podcasts including What Bitcoin Did, The Stephan Livera Podcast, Bitcoin Rapid Fire, Twice Bitten, the Bitcoin Matrix and many more.

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