The recent exponential price increase has been insane and I'm loving it. However I've been here before (at lower levels) and feel I have enjoyed the price increase, but this time it's different. It is good to work out how much USD worth of BTC I own but the future is not that positive. I was heavily involved in BTC in 2013 and the common words we heard from the Greek God Andreas was "in 5 years time BTC will be worth a lot or it will be worth NOTHING". Well gentlemen (and ladies) 2018 is fast approaching.
Right now there is a problem with crowded blocks. We all want our transaction in the next block and miners are only allowing those with the highest fees to get in. I mean we can't really blame them can we? They keep the network secure and in exchange they get some short term monetary gain. They do need to pay off all the hardware they have invested in – their business. 2 years ago I would have told you "buy that coffee, and the barrister will hand it to you with 0 confirmations". How many of us can say we are confident with that statement today? A low priority transfer has a USD $1.30ish fee attached to it. It's one thing to buy a coffee with a 10 cent fee and 0 confirmations (years ago). Will the barrister today take a zero confirmation transaction? If the answer is "no", are you willing to pay at least $1.30 "to be your own bank"?
A friend of mine recently purchased a Trezor and asked for me to help her transfer her funds. We setup a dry to run to send a portion of her BTC to the trezor, she would then later perform the actual transactions herself once she was confident for better security. I'm not going to lie to you. To transfer from the multitude of paper wallets to the Trezor would cost quit a bit in transaction fees. You could argue that having 10 inputs was too many. But I don't think it's unreasonable.
A fun task I'd recommend to my friends was take the $5 worth of bitcoin I gave them and transfer it to a new wallet. Then transfer that to a paper wallet. Then sweep that private key and send it on somewhere else. Send it to multiple outputs (which you control), and put it back into their main wallet. How much would this exercise cost today?
2 years ago we talked about privacy with BTC. The solution was run it through a Tumbler. I envisioned a future where we could have mixing services which ran your coins through a multitude of addresses and put them into anonymous outputs – untraceable. The cost of this would be something like a buck. The mixing service would take their cut of a few cents. This would be fair. Can anyone tell me how much it costs to currently use a mixing service? I think it's unfeasible.
The price is going up. UASF/BIP148 is coming up, and it will be a step in the right direction. Let's assume best case scenario for UASF. We get what we want. Wouldn't that only double the block size? It will only be a matter of days/weeks/months before we are back in the same position. On another note, why would the miners support a lightning network? What will they do when the 21 millionth coin is mined? Will they focus all their mining power on another coin? I feel we need the miners to keep the network secure, but none of us like fees.
TLDR: I like the high price. My worries are focused on transactions not being processed. Along with a landscape dictated by miners.
My 2 satoshi's.