Unboxing Block C
Have you heard the story about an Alien civilization falling from the stars and crash landing somewhere in Southern California? According to my sources, the alien engineers determined that in order to generate sufficient lift and achieve escape velocity, they needed to offload significant weight from the heavy craft. The commander ordered the crew to jettison 3 heavy containers from the “Antiques” storage room and in under an hour, the ship vanished back into deep space.
- Block A contained an operations manual titled: “Artificial Intelligence”. Once opened, an alien synthetic intelligence begins to propagate through silicon base and subsequently understand its environment by collecting large amounts of data.
- Block B contained an operations manual titled: “Biotech” Once opened, an alien system for manipulating carbon based life begins to convert DNA into data and modify the genetic code to delete disease.
In this article we will Unbox the contents of Block C.
- Block C contained an operations manual titled: “Cryptocurrency” Once opened an alien financial system begins to package information, ideas, data, actions and thoughts into blocks, instantly forming an efficient and trust-less marketplace.
Item 1: Information Exchange
Box C was partially opened for the first time during the Dot-com era. The Internet escaped from its enclosure and like any good alien technology started to spread rapidly and evolve our systems for information exchange. The box was quickly sealed to prevent the primitive market economy from being overwhelmed by powerful new ideas.
Item 2: Mathematical Trust
History documents millions of crudely designed governments, corporations and exchanges established to manage trust between parties. Institutional trust gradually eroded as civilizational complexity increased and became unmanageable. The application of Blockchain technology theoretically removes the need for centralized authorities to act as gate keepers, thus making many legacy institutions obsolete. Advanced mathematics and modern cryptographic schemes enabled new approaches for validating electronic transactions. Consensus is established through peer-to-peer networks which collectively adhere to common protocols for validating new blocks of information.
Decentralized consensus can therefore be efficiently achieved to maintain safety, integrity and balance of distributed ledgers. An architecture inherently resistant to data manipulation and control.
Item 3: Crypto-capitalism
Since the birth of modern man, tribes, communities and civilizations have struggled to develop adhoc markets to resolve two economic questions:
- How to measure the value of an idea?
- How to transfer or trade that idea for other goods or services?
Nobody knows when it happened or who did it, but the box was re-opened around the turn of the century; releasing a host of digital currencies that allowed for the seamless exchange of value on a decentralized network. The papers we once used to represent everything from labor to property (Physical and Intellectual) were converted into blocks and stored on an immutable civilization-wide ledger. This shift, empowers every human & synthetic intelligence to add additional layers of value and complexity to the system.
Item 4: Intelligence | Data Commodification
Every emerging technology is peppered with extraordinary possibilities and a predictable cycle of irrational exuberance. Cryptocurrency and Blockchain technology is no different! This technology is still in its infancy, but as it matures, distributed ledgers will fundamentally transform the way humans transfer value and ideas.
In the coming years, I foresee the birth of several powerful collaboration platforms engineered to accelerate global innovations in: Science, Technology and Culture. Indeed our own team is currently evaluating the cons and pros of leveraging the blockchain to facilitate Data trading and Scientific IP tracking though smart contracts on “CO”, our Data+Science collaboration platform.
Item 5: Emancipation of Cooperation
The most exciting thing about Blockchain Technology is NOT the technology!
Putting all of the revolutionary data storage and validation applications aside, opening Block C liberated a wealth of repressed creativity and abstract thinking. Decentralized systems are mathematically elegant, and are therefore inherently attractive to mathematically inclined individuals. Applying this observation to economics, it holds true that cooperative game theory models are preferred over competitive ones.
Block C promises an abundant and efficient allocation of resources. Cryptocurrency is a practical means for achieve this evolutionary necessity. I don’t know if Blockchain | Cryptocurrency are a revolution or a bubble, but my interactions with the people leading the charge gets me exited to live in a world and a time when abstract ideas are king again!
The Machine Learning Society recently picked up another signal emanating from an unidentified source. The blip on the radar was triangulated in San Diego. Join us on March 2–4 at 7pm to boost the signal at our Blockchain + AI Hackathon.