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Tag: coengineers

The Return of The Ingenesist Project

After about 4 years of not posting to this site, I have decided to return to the original ideas that resulted in so much innovation in this space. For a quick review, the term “Ingenesist” is derived from the Latin word for Engineer – A Maker of Useful Things.

The TIP archives found here include almost 600 blog posts (site map) approaching 1/2 million words. You’ll find the original thesis for the international mobility of engineers under NAFTA between US, Canada, and Mexico. That project involved 6 universities, the California Board of Professional Engineers, The National Council of Examiners for Engineers and Surveyors, and the National Society of Professional Engineers – and with the cooperation and support of CETYS University, the Baja California State Government, and over 250 Engineers from Mexico who presented the US Engineering Board exams.

That work was further developed at the Boeing Commercial Aircraft Company and published at the Boeing Technical Excellence series of conferences by their Technical Fellowship. From this effort, TIP developed The Innovation Bank that would match most worthy knowledge surplus to most worthy knowledge deficit to form an internal market (network) for knowledge transfer. That work is memorialized in an old 2007 Patent Application

Later, TIP co-founded Social Flights – a ride sharing service for private jets. The innovation was our ability to predict most likely passengers and match them with most likely seats available on private aircraft. Supply and demand were both dynamic. Keep in mind that this was before Uber and we were acting within a highly regulated industry. Ultimately Social Flights was acquired.

TIP developed three key innovations:

The Value Game: An economic game where multiple self-interested agents must share a common asset. Their motivation and incentive would be to preserve the asset rather than consume the asset. This was supposed to simulate a sustainable economy such as what is desperately needed for our planet. The Value Game originated at Boeing and was tested with Social Flights and successfully deployed in several remodeling projects for condominium associations (shares asset communities)

The WIKiD Tools Algorithm. WIKiD Tools creates a mathematical relationship between (viewed backwards) Data, information, Knowledge, Innovation, and Wisdom. WIKiD tools is useful when you can’t measure something like innovation directly, you could measure a derivative such as the “rate of change in knowledge” as a proxy. In this way,the richness of Wisdom, Information, Knowledge, information, and Data can be more predictable.

Curiosumé is a combination of the words Curate and Resumé. The idea behind curiosumé is to convert the CV or Resumé to a form of code that can be overlaid on other information databases such as Wikipedia, Amazon ontology, even the Library of Congress. This allows us to measure intangible assets as they act in a community.

Then Came Blockchain:

We stopped publishing to The Ingenesist Project in 2016 in order to apply TIP innovations to emerging technologies such as Social Media, Blockchain, AI, etc. It appeared that the decentralization of the engineering profession would be an important step in achieving the original goals of sustainable global enterprise. During this time, I also started a small engineering consulting firm called CoEngineers, PLLC that served a traditional local market bringing engineering services to a retail clientele. CoEngineers, PLLC helped pay the bills while also serving as a sandbox for testing and developing TIP Innovations. Our first entry into blockchain was the creation of a token called Quant on the BitShares Blockchain.

SIBOS, NSPE Task Force, and National Association of Insurance Commisioners: Collectively each of these organizations represent the Banking Industry, The Insurance Industry, and the Engineering Profession. TIP published 3 whitepapers that became the basis for the next iteration. It was noted that each of these industries trade an invisible currency called Risk. It was found that TIP methodologies were better described by actuarial math (probabilities) rather than interest laden monetary metrics. This 3-way association became the genesis of the Insurance / Engineering Blockchain Consortium. This was later changed to the Integrated Engineering Blockchain Consortium or IEBC.

IEBC: Over the course of several years, IEBC was the umbrella organization for 150 engineers, scientists, and business persons who advanced the idea of a decentralized engineering network to mesh with the banking and insurance environments. IEBC published numerous seminal documents and spoke at dozens of industry conferences. The two main achievements were to publish a whitepaper with detailed specifications for a blockchain strategy that would accommodate all prior TIP innovations. The IEBC team built a prototype blockchain by cloning an existing successful chain and modifying it to suit MVP demonstration. IEBC ultimately ramped down for lack of funding. But everything we learned is now open for iteration.

Where to re-Start? TIP has always been a place where ideas are formed and implemented either by ourselves or by others. Many TIP Ideas survive to this day in the many hundreds of engineers and scientists who have participated in the conversations, the start-ups, the publications, lectures, and webinars over the last 15-20 years. We can see many past TIP contributors advancing in their careers, businesses, and leadership roles.

There is something that binds people to this network – it has to do with the underlying belief that Makers Of Useful Things are the cause, not the effect, of sound and sustainable economic activity. The flaw of market capitalism has the world operating in a mirror image of the economy that was supposed to happen. The solution is more about perception than it is about revolution.

Decentralized Integration of Complex Systems

ApolloThe recent Panel at The Future of Money and Technology Summit on Fueling the Decentralization Movement ended on a very interesting point: The Integration of Complex Systems.

The last comments from Chris Peel suggested that the iPhone program was more complex than Apollo and that we are a far way off from the ability to decentralize production to the degree that a space program or revolutionary consumer product would require. From my years in aviation, I am keenly aware that the complexities associated with an aircraft program would be extremely difficult and risky to manage with a series of autonomous agents and smart contracts – as we know them today.

Wisdom of Crowds

However, the proposition made by Joel Dietz at Swarm is significant. Swarm proposes to crowd-select, crowd-vet, and crowd-fund start-ups. Several efficiencies are cited:

1. The crowd knows best what is needed in a specific time and domain,

2. The same crowd is also the first user/customer/advocates of the product, and

3. The same crowd is the first to iterate the project.

Such diverse and comprehensive “single source” domain expertise is unlikely to be available from any Venture Capital Firm.  Instead, far too many start-ups are designed specifically for the Venture Capital process effectively inbred with the centralized DNA.  The VC formula is fairly simple, well documented, and contains suitably developed infrastructure. The VC process efficiently removes promising innovations from a decentralized ecosystem, repackages them, and injects them into the 20th century finance model of banks, brokers, and IPOs.

Today, the decentralization movement is portrayed in the media by silos like AirBnB and Uber, who may eventually expand into other markets (such as Amazon did from books), but from a relative monopoly position of acquisitions, scale, and market dominance – which is the antithesis of decentralization.

Fueling The Decentralization Movement

This Panel at Future of Money was selected in a very different manner.  The idea that I was trying to get at is that an ecosystem is like scaffolding being populated with individual applications. At first they are sparse, but soon they expand to depend upon each other. At first, each of the panelists seemed very different and related only by ideology. As the session progressed, we could see the each of the panelists were filling in the gaps between themselves soon appearing like a full stack.

Paige Peterson suggested that Maidsafe’s ideas and technology would solve specific problems in the crypto-space that the blockchain could not. Christian Peel suggested that Swarm and Maidsafe may reduce scale risk with what Ethereum has to offer. Sam Yilmaz at DApps Fund is betting on cryptoequity and a broad spectrum of “work proofs” as a means of holding these DApps together rather than letting them become disassembled by a single minded Venture Capital process. Of course, our interest at The Ingenesist Project is precisely on decentralizing both supply AND demand as a means of articulating intangible assets to society (ref: Coengineers.com and Curiosumé).

What is Cryptoequity?

“Cryptoequity,” as defined by Swarm (from this Source) is an umbrella term that covers various applications of cryptographic ledger offerings.

These can include:

(1) Product presales in which the token serves as a coupon redeemable for a real world good (i.e. the Comic Book sale done via Swarm)

(2) Product sales in which the token is redeemable for some service in a decentralized network (i.e. Storj or Ethereum)

(3) Product sales which serve as a “subscription” or membership to some decentralized network (i.e. Swarm)

(4) Token which serves as a license to use some type of intellectual property, potentially with an attached legal contract (i.e. sales being conducted in the Swarm 5th of November launch)

(5) “Shares” serving as stock equivalent for organizations that have no legal entity (i.e. BitShares)

(6) Shares serving as stock for legal entities (i.e. Overstock/Medici)

Efficiency in Zero Marginal Cost

The relative benefit of many of these is that it solves an interesting problem related to the near zero marginal cost of software distribution; the fixed scarcity of a good or service allows the market to determine the appropriate price point for a product rather than centralized forced scarcity or management selection.

Decentralized Integration of Complex Systems

If we are to ever reach a point where complex systems (such as space travel or consumer products – or even equitable governance, environmental stewardship, and fair wealth distribution)  can ever be achieved in a decentralized manner, we must start with the integration of decentralized applications among themselves in a decentralized way.  We should not exclusively extract and seal critical components off from an ecosystem and run them through the VC gamut – the disruption goes both ways.

 

Time to Kill Social Media

Kill Social MediaSocial Media is dying and it needs to be put out of its misery ASAP.  I have been in the social media space for many years and while much has happened, much has been lost.

There was a dream we all had in the earlier days that ‘user-generated content’ would evolve to ‘user-generated productivity’ and social priorities would change. The funny thing about economics is that nothing economic can happen until two or more people physically get together in time and space and make something valuable for each other.

I have seen this over and over in my own businesses. The Ingenesist Project (TIP) has global reach, high the engagement of important people, and a fair amount of notoriety – but after nearly 10 years, 500 blog posts, 60 videos and dozens of conference appearances, TIP has not generated a single penny of revenue.  But I’ve met hundreds of wonderful people many who have become close friends.

On the other hand, Coengineers is only a few years on and gets twice as many website views, we’ve toppled shady contractors, and publish an extensive catalog of engineering means and methods, and saved many shared asset communities from financial peril. But it is not until I physically walk into society and ask people face to face and ask “How can we help you?” that Coengineers generates revenue…. and, then we do generate revenue.  And I’ve met hundreds of people many of whom have become close friends.

Linkedin is worthless. Facebook is criminal. Google is downright creepy.

Again, nothing economic happens until two or more people get together in physical space and time to make something useful for each other. Yes, I know that software can be produced oceans apart, but what is that software about? It is always about something that happens in the physical space. It MUST eventually touch the ground somewhere in order to have an economic outcome to convert back downstream.  Big Data wants those relationships, they want them badly, they think that they should own them.  That is where the value is and Big Data wants to scale it.

ROI Rage

Nobody has ever been able to produce a reliable ROI on social media. It’s easy to get people to talk about something, but it is difficult to get people to buy something. Enter Big Data. According to Josh Sinell, VP at Merkle, “It’s [now] about determining what data we need to make something measurable and valuable happen, and then using that data to craft a strong offer, and delivering that offer when and where that customer is most ready to receive and act on it”.

The implications of this statement are horrific (“Shock and Awe” comes to mind). But we can also look at it as a business opportunity – marketers are willing to pay dearly for clean data from anyone who can harness it. So what if we the people could harness our own data and place a big yellow tollbooth on the Big Data Superhighway?

Turning out the lights 

Curiosumé creates a public key inventory of all the things that people need. Then you create your decentralized private key representing your relationships, which you control. By looking at either key, some global data may be attainable; mostly the the stuff that serves society in general. However, your personal data is encrypted until you – and only you – combine your private key with the public key, then the secrets within are revealed.   This would effectively shut the lights out on Big Data. If they want to see your data, they will need to pay you directly for it.

The famous prophet Mitt Romney once proclaimed, “Corporations are people, my friend” But little do many of us realize that people are corporations too. So go ahead, kill Social Media.  Society may simply reorganize into something else, the sooner the better in my opinion.

 

 

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