What would you give the block chain to do?


Think about what you hate most. I bet work has a lot to do with it! The “toad work” as Philip Larkin used to call it!

I would like to do an audit of the things I hate most at the toad work. Here is my moan list …in no particular order!


  1. Timesheets
  2. Expenses
  3. Filing
  4. Photocopying
  5. Getting to the office
  6. Getting back from the office
  7. Anything to do with spreadsheets
  8. Weekly reports
  9. Anything to do with Human Resources
  10. Billing


OK – some of those may resonate …so what would I be doing if I wasn’t doing that lot?

  1. Meeting with customers
  2. Meeting with introducers
  3. Meeting with providers
  4. Meeting with my colleagues
  5. Creating presentations
  6. Writing blogs
  7. Shooting videos
  8. Presenting to groups
  9. Going to conferences
  10. Sorting out ways not to do “real work”


By “real work” I mean “toad work” and if I could find a computer that would shake hands with me and do all the things I hate doing – for me- I’d pay that computer a lot of money!



Infact it is not the computer I’d pay the money to, but to the clever person who designed and coded the algorithm that made it easy for me to press a button and let all the hard work go away.The kind of artificial intelligence I want is more akin to a servant to which I can, without any compunction, delegate the functions of toad work in all their slimy distastefulness

When we were kids, we didn’t think digitally, we thought mechanically. The robots we had in mind were incredible sophisticated toys that used electricity to do things in ways that we could not comprehend. The idea of artificial intelligence was there (think of Hal 2000) but Hal was as big as a house and about as agile.


Meet Mr and Mrs Block chain

I won’t be sexist in my choice of code, I want toad work outsourced to an androgynous process that I can trust to deliver faultlessly and immediately. I am not demanding, I will only deliver Mr and Mrs Block chain tasks of the utmost tedium

Like my Rockwell calculator (paid for by my Dad when I was 13 for getting my exams), I will cherish Mr and Mrs Block chain for all their digitally. I will not question them, nor will I criticise their work. I will regard the product of their labour with the same awed as when my Rockwell calculator did my O and A level maths.



The question will be about demarcation.

At what point can Toad Work dig in his slimy flippers and say no more? Or is it the other way round? Will I come home from work to find my blog written from an amalgam of the words that I spoke and the numbers that I typed? Will I find my presentations created from strategies that I and my colleagues gave to Mr and Mrs Block chain for safe keeping? Will I finally find one of those strategies was my demise as a workplace item? Will I be retired by the block chain?

In a world where demarcation between operations and strategy are fluid, can I afford to leave Mr and Mrs Block chain to it?





About henry tapper

Founder of the Pension PlayPen,, partner of Stella, father of Olly . I am the Pension Plowman
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1 Response to What would you give the block chain to do?

  1. DaveC says:

    No no no no no no.

    HAL was a homicidal computer, driven to it by fallible paranoid humans.
    Algorithm based AI isn’t AI, the fallible humans will bias outcomes.

    Blockchain is just a pigeonhole board so large, data is safe through sheer isolation.
    It’s still just a huge database of information. Someone/thing has to be responsible for input and retrieval of data.

    AI is just a big thing again because of ‘big data’ and analytical tools, a hype word for those IT startups trying to sell analytics services.
    It is absolutely vulnerable from human bias, stupidity and short sightedness, just as any AI so far has been.

    As said, I’ve yet to see one flowchart or AI concept that can even begin to do one tiny part of what you describe with AI and blockchain.

    You’re mostly falling for tech business hype as they try keep their stock values up.

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