Fueling The Decentralization Movement

by Dan Robles on December 5, 2014

I recently moderated a panel at The Future of Money and Technology Summit in San Francisco on December 2, 2014.  When I put this panel together, my intention was to make the distinction more intuitive between an economy based in tangible assets and an economy based in intangible assets.   Whether they realized it or not, this particular group of panelists provided early  characteristics of a “full stack” new economic architecture as we described in this early 2009 series: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7

Here is the video of the conference panel.  Below that, are the questions that I had prepared for the group – most of which I did not need to ask.  This panel, in my opinion not only represents some of the most forward thinking people in the crypto-space but also the extremely important integration of applications that are arising in crypto-space.  That is the landmark condition that I am looking for, where applications integrate with each other.

Fueling The Decentralization Movement


Below is my prep sheet for the panel;


Dan: Welcome to Fueling The Decentralization Movement


How many people know what bitcoin is?

Are you familiar with decentralized applications beyond currency?

Would you know how to issue your own currency?

How many people are familiar with Ethereum?

Open: 1-2 minute introduction from each panelist

Q1; Sam. Please define Decentralized Applications (ref: whitepaper) and what you look for in an “investment grade” DApp.

Q2; Paige: Please expand definition of DApp to include non-block chain applications and discuss the off-BCP ways of accomplishing similar results.

Q3: Chris: Where does Ethereum fit in the DApps movement (now and in the next revision) that would facilitate DApp formation and integration.

Q4: Joel: Traditional VC are looking for 1000% on money. Banks lend at 10%, so obviously, there must be a whole lot happening between 10-1000%. What does that look like to you? How could we all release this potential.

Open: Suppose there is a spectrum where on one side, traditional bankers are the ledger holders and adjudicators conjure new money into existence. And on the other side, Bitcoin is a fully decentralized ledger and algorithm that brings new coins into existence. At some point, aren’t we trading one master for another or isn’t their some hybrid model that solves the problems of each? The goal it seems is to be judged as somewhat better than the banking system rather than somewhat less perfect than bitcoin. Do we have priorities s traight?

Open: What are people talking about in the Bitcoin Meetups and the Ethereum Meetups? What is the range of discussion and how viable are the ideas that people are bringing forward? What is the size and demographic of the meet up communities? What do they want to achieve? What are the resentments and where is the optimism?

Open; Nothing economic happens until two or more people get together to build something useful. Virtual goods are cool but something eventually has to touch the earth – to make something real. What can DApps do to bridge the virtual and the real? Stated in another way; when can I buy groceries with my altcoin?

Open: Bitcoin cryptographic “proof of work” creates a new coin and establishes order. The Fiat Banker’s “Proof of future productivity (debt)” also creates a new coin and established ownership. Assuming this to be a trust spectrum; how would “mining” be defined along this spectrum? Can adjudicated smart contracts serve as proof of work to mine coin into existence?

Open: Please describe differences between proof of work, proof of stake, proof of incentive, proof of resource, proof of performance and any number of proofs types. How interchangeable are they, what individual purposes do they serve? Can they combine to serve additional purposes?

Open: Do you believe that decentralization can reach a point where people become their own coin mined by themselves as they accumulate knowledge asset, collaboration, innovation capacity, i.e., representing their own productivity?

Open: What happens when the output of one DApp becomes the input to another forming a fault tolerant network or DApps? Ultimately this has to do with the convertibility of each other’s coins and ultimately convertibility with Fiat currency. What will these exchanges look like?

Open; I like to draw the distinction between classical economics and the New Value Movement. Classical economics posits merchant class allocation of land, labor, and capital for the ideal production of the things that society needs. The New Value movement is describing a decentralized allocation of social capital, creative capital, and intellectual capital for the ideal production of the things that society needs. Where are we on that spectrum and when do you believe that a big flip will happen between the two (if any)? Will it be gradual or sudden? What externalities are involved? Does one hedge the other? What are the possible worldwide implications of this?



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