The Tearsheet guide to fintech jargon for 2018

  • The world of financial technology is sounding like an increasingly niche space where jargon is becoming something of a currency
  • Our updated termsheet will help you cut through the noise to understand what everything really means

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The Tearsheet guide to fintech jargon for 2018
Another year gone by, and more inventive language to show for it. Financial services felt technology's invasion into the industry even more strongly in 2017, and it seems jargon has become more of a currency now than ever. The main players are getting better at talking about what they do and why -- but they struggle with the how. So we've updated the Tearsheet term sheet with the latest in inventive language to catch up on as we head into 2018. We invite you to tweet us at @tearsheetco with any suggestions. agile: fast altcoin: a bitcoin alternative accelerators: finishing school for startups AI: "big data," 2017 version API: official permission to use someone else’s work beta: we have no idea what we’re doing big data: so 2012 biometrics: fingerprints bitcoin: you're kidding bitcoin mining: computers are competing to get new bitcoins blockchain: a very secure Excel sheet co-creation: customer creation central ledger: a really important blockchain run by really important people chatbot: do I sound human yet? conversational banking: you’re talking to something consensus: when everyone agrees this is a thing consumers: people corporate VCs: attention startups: take our money, let us buy you later cryptocurrency: digital currency for anarchists chief culture officer: chief ping-pong table installer decentralized autonomous organization: humans aren’t involved democratize: lowering the barriers to entry, to get more customers DLT: blockchain tech built with banker specs enterprise: for businesses, not for lowly humans future proofing: making sure your product isn’t a passing fad digital ambassadors: bank tellers digital identity: the real you digital tokens: a way to raise money digital wallet: your wallet on a phone, sans cash and ID Jamie Dimon: he hates bitcoin but loves blockchain disruptors: startups with big egos ecosystem: we want everything you do to loop back to our family of products ethereum: the new bitcoin fail-fast-fail-often: fail fintech: finance today frictionless: easy game changing: hoping you forgot the last time we did this guests: people high-tech-high-touch: we support both people and robots ICO: kind of like an IPO, but using cryptocurrency incubator: boarding school for disruptors incumbents: grownup people innovation lab: adult playground innovative: (see: game changing) insurtech: a bot will soon tell you your medical visit is not covered machine learning: the machine that knows how to react when you yell at it marketplace lending: you're lending to or borrowing from a stranger through a website native: you don’t need Safari or Chrome to use it omnichannel: every channel open banking: banks need to outsource creativity, via APIs participants: real people permissioned ledger: you need an invite to join this PFM (personal finance management): balancing your checkbook pivot: our first idea didn't really pan out post-app world: apps will die proof of burn: you can’t spend your crypto proof-of-concept: we’re waiting for the money to make this a thing proof of stake: you’ve got skin in the game proof of work: you’re mining remittance: money that costs money to send home overseas relationship building: when banks want to stalk you revolutionary: hyped robo-advisers: you’ll end up talking to humans Satoshi Nakamoto: we don’t know if he exists, but he apparently designed bitcoin smart contract: you don’t need to argue with real people scale: grow solution: experiment sprints: not your average never-ending large-scale tech overhaul surprise and delight: it’s kind of new and customers probably won’t hate it test-and-learn: playtime for focus-groups throughput: when input and output aren't long-enough words ubiquitous: everywhere unicorn: those special startups in the Three Comma Club users: people who downloaded our app once VC: mom and dad Venmo: how you stalk your ex Watson: scary smart supercomputer XaaS (anything as a service): using the Internet

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