fear uncertainty and doubt
Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

“A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on” (uncredited). Similarly, such criminal leverage appears in other forms. For example, one guy with a shoe bomb is responsible for 100 million people removing their shoes every time they get on an airplane – 20 years later. Law enforcement in burdened with being right millions of times whereas the attacker need only be right once. We know from experience that the vast majority of people are truthful and honest. Despite the cost, breadth, loss of immeasurable civil liberties we are still unable to untangle the fraud from the fiction. We need to solve this problem as if our lives depend on it. Behind Every Fraud Is A Mountain of Truth that needs to be curated.

What if the leverage could be reversed so that the attacker must be right a thousand times while the target only needs to be right once?


The Value Game

One of the features of The Innovation BankTM is the application of game mechanics. The Value GameTM begins when a person makes a claim about the physical state of the world. It could be anything from claims of education and experience on their CV to reporting a toxic spill. Those claims are entered on a blockchain, timestamped, and rendered immutable. The player must then find another player to validate their claim. In effect stating “I validate that this claim is true”. The claimant and the validator are then permanently linked on the blockchain as a “node and two branches”. This claim is then combined with all of the other claims and validations in the community. Each participant is issued a digital token that can be converted to cash. That’s all there is to it, problem fixed!

Here’s how this simple game plays out.

Super Villain Max Mallory decides that he wants to gain access to a nuclear reactor in order to perform nefarious deeds. His problem is that he has no previous experience or education in nuclear engineering. Using The Innovation Bank, Mallory makes a claim that he is a nuclear engineer. He quickly encounters difficulty finding another engineer to validate his claim. Mallory pays his sidekick Carl to validate the claim. For completing the pairing, both receive a token that they can sell for a bit of hard cash. So far so good!!!

Mallory then tries to get inside the reactor gate and discovers that he is denied. Mallory’s transaction record does not follow the typical chronological sequence compared to any other nuclear engineer. Mallory goes to Wikipedia and looks up “Nuclear Engineer” to fill in the gaps. This does not work either — a blockchain cannot go backwards in time. Max needs to graduate high school before going to college. Mallory would not be able to assert the proper sequence events – even if he had a checklist. The Innovation Bank is left to register an unvalidated claim (a fancy term for a Lie) against Mallory. Likewise, a “dead head claim” (a fancy term for incompetence) remains for Carl.

If either wants to interface with the Innovation Bank at any time in the future to get a real job, apply for a loan, or comment on social media, they would experience increasing difficulty in finding validators. Their only other option would be to start over with a new profile starting at t=0.

No Incentive to Commit Fraud

In the long run, the successful attacker would need to be an accomplished professional nuclear engineer with a long transaction record validated by many colleagues, mentors, publications, and institutions in a specific sequence and over a long period of recorded time. The reward from the attack would need to far exceed the attacker’s transactional loss since they will most certainly be identified, caught, and prosecuted. But most likely, they will be thwarted at an earlier juncture with a unvalidated claim related to a less critical offense.

In general, there is no incentive to cheat. There is no incentive for aiding and abetting a cheat. There are retributions far into the future for claimants and validators who are haphazard with their facts and associations. The cost of cheating far exceeds the benefit of most illicit activity. As such, no punitive costs are incurred for routine operations of the power plant.

The Truth Has Value:

As the Value Game plays out over millions of claims and validations across the entire value network of Engineering and Science professionals, (and beyond) the probability of encountering fraud or incompetence would become exceedingly small — approaching zero — especially at the higher order claims.

Meanwhile, the aggregate database of STEM professionals interacting truthfully and dynamically is training the algorithm to identify to recognize outlier behaviors. As more truth is is stored in the aggregate database becomes, the more valuable it becomes for separating fact from fiction thereby increasing the value of the digital tokens. The higher the tokens are valued, the more secure the network becomes.

Now, the truth can travel halfway around the world before the lie has a chance to put its pants on.


It’s all about efficiency

The Innovation Bank is far more efficient than trying to unravel anonymous and spectacular rumors tossed out on the Internet. It is more efficient that having to validate the equal and opposite. Everything is pre-validated. Prohibitive punitive costs and controls are minimized. This “judicial system” is auto-funding and self-correcting. The process of curating claims and validations creates the social fabric upon which each and every one of us ultimately relies. Every participant is incentivized to collaborate as a means of gaining “stake” (i.e., equity) in the system. Meanwhile, there is no incentive to exploit or corrupt the system. The forensics are performed prior to the failure.