Blockchain & Society: Can We Build the Good without Unleashing the Bad?

(Music) (Music) Greg: I have the honour of also introducing people who are invaluable to IPDB. First up we have Kei Kreutler who is with unMonastery, one of our caretakers and more recently with Gnosis as their Creative Director and Community Manager. (Applause) And we are also joined by Nina Siedler with DWF Law. She started her career as a corporate lawyer but has been dipping her toes and finding how deep the water is in the blockchain world. So, welcome Nina. (Applause) And you'll notice that there are only 3 of us on the stage when originally there was supposed to be 4. Unfortunately Ali Hussein was not able to join us. We have the German visa office to thank for that. So I guess sometimes the law really can't keep up with the things we're doing in the technological world. But we do have Nina and Kei here today and really what we want to talk about is, we've been hearing about all of these wonderful things and of these risks and people who are actually building stuff and making it real.

So I think the goal for society in all of this has to be, how can we maximise the good stuff and minimise the bad stuff? And hopefully totally prevent the apocalyptic stuff. So I guess we'll just turn things over right now to Kei to introduce herself and say a bit what she's been interested in working on. Kei: Cool. So hey, I'm Kei Kreutler. I have a background as a designer and developer and more recently I also founded an augmented reality platform for urban research. So my work focus is across a kind of broad range of fields and here today I'm also representing unMonastery. Which is an initiative for a network of residences focused on hacker space design patterns and monasticism and supporting social good through open source tech projects. And IPDB is the, well unMonastery is one of the caretaker organisations of IPDB.

So through my work at unMonastery but also more generally I do a lot of background research on new tools for cooperatives and distributive cooperatives today and how tech infrastructure can support that. So in this kind of question of how can we unleash the good without unleashing the bad, I think that we currently see democracy or representational democracy as we have it quite often, in a bit of a crisis to say the least. And there's new forms, particularly through tech but also through social and political sides first, like liquid democracy potentially if you (inaudible) that open a space for more delegatory voting. So you have this case where you might be voting for lets say like, so a delegate to represent a series of policies, say on energy or public infrastructure or he might be voting directly on those policies and there’s no longer a need to have a kind of centralisation of policy work as such even if the structures implementing those policies might be more centralised.

So that's one thing I'm very interested in as a researcher and as well the kind of good and bad sides that that presents. And an interest as well in how this kind of suddenly a lot of past previous cybernetic discourse is brought to the fore again. Projects like Cybersyn or other things suddenly become not only less expensive but much more pragmatic and much more egalitarian minded given that there isn't majority control in these networks. Greg: And over to you Nina. Nina: Yeah Nina Siedler DWF. I'm a finance lawyer by background erm and so I guess it does not surprise that I'm heavily involved in the ICO discussions here in Germany, working on a couple of projects. But I don't want to talk about ICOs as much today because what actually interests me personally more, are the ethical, social political dimensions that blockchain is actually involved. And I would like to raise the question: cheap open source technology, plus AI, plus robots is that actually always a good thing? I think technology as we heard a lot this morning is basically neutral. It can be used for good and bad stuff.

Erm and so I think we have to keep an eye on how this all develops and I personally also believe we need to take more people on board right. Because what we discuss here, we will lose like I don't know at least 95% of the population over these discussions and we need to try to get them back on board. So in the context of the socio-political trends, somebody just recently said we have the 3 capital I's. Which are Insurgence, Immigration and Inequity and there are many interactions between these 3 topics. So in inequity, not only this is growing because the gap is growing between poor and rich and I really, it's a pity that our 3rd panellist is not here because he wanted to add a further dimension. We're basically from the first world as somebody said previously and it would be good to get more, you know, the views rather out of third world countries towards this. But we also created a huge gap between the accessibility of technology in certain regions, simply due to the infrastructure and also the gap in being able to understand what you guys are actually trying to build.

So not everybody can actually follow that any more and Jillian you just said earlier this morning, 'digitalisation creates more and more divides' and I think that's absolutely true. And this complexity we are reaching now, needs to be governed, in some sense. And I think we all must get our heads around, how do we actually govern that. Because we are leaving, we are loosing the crowd and leaving them behind. And that actually supports the current trend to more nationalism and to the politically right-wing parties which we see all over the western world. And complexity also creates the opportunity for great disasters in the end. So I also think we need to think about how to break down the structures that we are building into smaller modules, to make the whole system controllable. Erm, yeah, what other aspects do we have. Clearly I think that the, that we will see increasing instability all over as we currently see and that's also partly driven through the technologies. But obviously it's also an opportunity for economic growth in those areas which have the regulatory area that enables technology to grow.

And that's maybe coming back to the talk prior to this one. Yes we are thinking about how we can actually from a legal side support those global developments but it's not that easy and please don't shoot the messenger but choosing the jurisdiction is actually, at least within Europe, not able, that doesn't work on the consumer end. That's one of the problems we actually face because we were thinking about maybe employing the United Nations, 'UN-Kaufrecht', international convention on international sale of goods for token purposes. Obviously it doesn't apply directly because it's not a physical good but we were thinking about how to make that maybe work and that's one of the problems we actually face.

You can't choose that jurisdiction if there is a consumer on board. And maybe I would also like to add a 4th 'I' actually and that's international terrorism. And having seen the trend within the past, I would say, 2 decades to a large concentration of the industry and also within the public infrastructure, electricity, water, health, also financial services, I think it's a good sign to see now decentralisation coming up because that makes the whole system less vulnerable to international terrorism. So that's maybe a potential mitigation to those risks and we don't see this only within blockchain but also think about like 3D printing, things like those developments also drive decentralisation.

So I see a clear counter-movement to the concentration we faced before. Yeah but I also think we need to talk about decentralisation within blockchain because not everything is actually decentralised. Erm think about Bitcoin and Ethereum, which is decentralised on a technical level but if you actually see who have the most influence then it comes down to a very small circle of people, which is not really decentralised. And most of the applications, working on top of the blockchains are not decentral either and that's also within the ICO space. Don't believe that any ICO that you may want to participate in actually supports like a community venture, most of the ICOs actually finance very centralised projects.

Erm, so I think this game between centralised and decentralised needs to be further discussed. Greg: So I want to pull things back to one particular thing you said. How we have these different kinds of inequalities. Both in terms of financial equality, inability to actually engage with the ideas, with where we live, with all of the different gaps that we have between people and you said that well we are going to have 95% of the population falling off. Erm, I'm wondering Kei if you could discuss how some of these new tools could help ease some of those gaps and whether we can bring in at least a few more percent and hopefully switch things around entirely, so we are keeping 95 and only losing 5. Kei: Well I think it's quite a large task when it comes on the social and political side of the technology which is often relegated and I think that the points you brought up Nina too, in terms of decentralised infrastructure and not necessarily equalling decentralised power. And often in network effects, tech or not, we have to deal with power laws and distribution and figuring out how to actively subvert them.

So often blockchain seem heralded as something that will do a kind of proper, more egalitarian or at least incentivised redistribution of wealth. And that is one subject. But as well as getting other people on board, to even the initial conversation I think a lot of it comes back to being an initial design problem and a design question of user interfaces but also meeting face to face and communities. So I think with the work of IPDB is quite interesting because it seems to be a governance first approach to starting a node of a decentralised network. So 12 different organisations all host and steward their own node and actually meet in person and discuss the governance rules of this blockchain organisation database as you call it. And there's a lot lacking in that space in terms of putting all of the legal infrastructure into the actual technical functioning. Whether you see it through smart contracts or otherwise, they often have to be deliberated and where do they go when they go to the law and there's a lot of disagreement about that. But often it's through kind of social, more fractile forms of community, guilds, local councils on a more national level that really do the social first and to me that's probably the most pressing question in terms of having the scalability but also the accessibility to these conversations.

Is taking their conceptual forms, whether they are technically implemented or not, and bringing people into those discussions through, I guess experiments. Yeah. Greg: And Nina, do you have anything to add, how we can bring people back into a sort of democratic functioning of this new society that we are building? Nina: Actually I think, you know, usability and user interfaces are very important. So actually I still have trouble, you know, using Bitcoin, Ether and that stuff. That's still too complicated for like everyone on the street. As soon as we have like proper apps simply on your mobile that is as easy to handle as like the commercial apps. I think we will have the chance to get more people on-board because everybody is using those and actually I very much like the idea to creating communities where people with aligned interests can get together and communicate whether they are sitting in the same region or not.

Just you know, via creating like virtual communities instead and I actually also think that democracy can actually also become more lively by using those features. So I think that's liquid democracy. Yeah it's a difficult topic actually because the mass is also easily mislead, right. So you always there as well, have to keep a balance. Kei: And you also have to make sure that the people actually have stake in the decision that's being made. Have stake in the decisional process, and vice-versa. Nina: But stake.

Stake is actually a good topic because what I see a lot within the blockchain community is that democracy is actually mistaken for plutocracy right, so always remember democracy is one man, one vote. It's not, you know, a bucket of money per vote, right. So and that's something that needs to be taken into account. Like for example the DAO, I remember like the front page saying perfectly democratised investing scheme, but actually you know that has, the pure fact that you are able to vote on something has nothing to do with democracy as such. It's the question, how much does one vote count, if that's dependent upon how much stake, meaning financial stake you have put into it. Kei: Yeah. And just in terms of kind of the historical process of voting. Often it was land ownership or other qualifications relegated to be representing a vote and that is not necessarily a system that we want to replicate either. So figuring out how to have stake in a system for the people who don't necessarily have the voice or the representation with that.

You know, these are long historical questions but we are inching towards them. Greg: Erm, at the same time, when we move too far toward one person, one vote we wind up with issues of tyranny of the majority. Erm do you have any thoughts on how we can balance these two competing concerns? Allowing participation from everyone, while at the same time preventing our worst impulses when we behave as David Holtzman said earlier today within our tribes. Nina: Difficult. Kei: Well I think the question of human governance is maybe the oldest question since we've had the ability to ask questions. So I don't think that there is a quick, one fix solution or a kind of overall universal governance system that may work on that scale.

There might be something that functions on that scale, but it wont work in all of its bits. So there's no, not necessarily a proposition. I quite like looking at federated and fractile models of voting, of voting within a community and then progressive tiers higher and higher and having feedback loops and checks and balances at each stage on a policy vote, as it goes to higher scalability levels. That's my favourite particular model of governance but there's a lot of work to be done. Nina: Yeah, that also comes down to the question of the wisdom of the crowd and I think that's kind of limited.

You can't expect, and I personally, I'm not able to know everything. So we can't be experts on each and every topic and so I think that's actually right. You have to, you know, accumulate that to a certain extent. Greg: Well, I've quite literally had all of the problems that I've been working on solved just now, so I'm going to give the crowd the opportunity to have the same experience I have and put some questions to our panel. Audience Member 1: Thank you very much. Erm so I, I guess I'm struggling a little bit because I have a tough time talking about structures of governance, unless there is first a discussion about core values and I think those of us who are engaged in governance no matter if you're talking about governments or boards or whatever it is, communities.

It doesn't really seem to work, whatever structure you create, unless you really have a set of shared values. So I guess my question is, in this more and more decentralised and fragmented world which technology is enabling, how do you approach this question of finding a core set of shared values? Nina: I think actually that's a brilliant question. Because what we see in this scene and there are many highly intellectual people working in this area is that you demand high freedom from state regulation for the blockchain area. At the same time, we've got extremely high standards in the western world for consumer protections and that's for the reason not everybody is so sophisticated. And that needs to be balanced in some way and we can, you know, have long discussions whether we in Europe and especially in Germany we might have, in the mean time, a little bit over exaggerated with the consumer protection stuff that we actually built up.

But in the end to some extent we will always need to have some protection and not only that, maybe let me add this as well. Within blockchain any kind of governance also needs to take into account some kind of minority protection. There must always be, you know, some certain core rules that can not even be taken away by a majority vote. And those I think exactly are the things that need to be defined, yeah. Kei: And I think also taking your question and putting it into the design and development of blockchain systems. If we look at DAOs or even AI DAOs in the future, that they start with initial parameters and those are equivalent to what might be an organisations value system and that they continue running.

And to me, one of the huge questions in this space now, which was previously and is still, but it's slightly different language. The previous one was, what are the values of this organisation? And what are the initial incentivisaton parameters of this organisation, ported into the DAO space? And to me I think it's super critical that we also have designers and like many multi-disciplinary groups working on these issues about how to design for certain values as well. And not necessarily just one group trying to decide for themselves because we have the chance to be able to do DAO like infrastructure and you know, micropayments and something like automated basic income for communities, if they're set up on the initial values and put into play. But we really need people working on design of automation as a whole, because that will now, rather than just kind of AI implementation or supporting kind of anti-AI implementation.

But thinking about design, automation as an ecology and organisations as a place to set initial values to pay back to communities, is where the governance and core values question hits for me at the moment. If that makes sense? Nina: And maybe we also need to add some kind of features how to actually amend the initial core values that you fed into the system because things change over time and that's what we see with the law currently. Right, the law always lags behind and the same will happen to any kind of automated technology that you set up. You know, it also needs to be adopted over time. Audience Member 2: Thanks. I wanted to pick up on the point Dr Seidler made earlier about the fact that there's, we talk a lot about decentralisation but there's also, there's a lot of the stuff which is centralised. And as a CTO for a startup, one of the first things I did was stick all of our software into AWS. And more or less all the other CTOs I know for startups, everything is in AWS or it's on Google Cloud Platform or it might be on Azure.

And I was just interested if you had any thoughts on the kind of tension between this sort of centralisation and kind of, yeah centralisation of utility cloud computing versus the desire and the kind of value in creating distributed systems. Nina: Yeah, I see, you know, the need for a lot of discussions in this decentralisation-centralisation topic. Because, for example, in the ICO world due to the many scams that we see out there, there are tons of initiatives currently starting up to form best practise standards. And to apply them ideally, automated to the ICOs that are introduced. Erm and somebody said jokingly, you know, soon we will see more best practise initiatives than we see ICOs. And the problem is, if those initiatives are distributed, they don't gain any power.

So really trying to lobby that, those initiative need to merge again because otherwise none of them will actually have any effect. So there is you know to a certain extent, decentralisation is not good for everything necessarily and also maybe with the legal discussion and creating one universe legal framework. I always also like to point out that this might not be the best idea. Right, because you don't have choices then any more. So I actually think, look at the jurisdiction, that's a decentralised structure currently. And I understand that this is complicated and it's not helpful for actually implementing global business but on the other hand, it's also good to have at least some jurisdictions you can choose within where you actually want to live. So yes, decentralisation-centralisation it's, yeah, you have to distinguish between the topics.

Greg: I'm going to take my prerogative and jump in there a little bit. One of the challenges that we faced with IPDB, is the fact that most of the laws around data protection and the way data can be stored and transferred or designed around these kind of centralised systems where the data can live in one place and the second you get into a network where data is stored across multiple nodes, located in multiple jurisdictions the kind of formulas that make up data protection law where you have a controller of the data don't make sense any more. Because who's the controller of personal data written on say the Ethereum blockchain? It's each of the thousands and thousands of computers that have a copy of that data. Are we going to apply data protection law to each one of them? I don't think that makes sense.

But it would give me pause if I was one of the controllers of that data. So I think there's kind of an inherent bias toward the centralised system built in to current law and I think that's one interesting aspect to your question. Nina: I may add you know, we certainly currently have too many jurisdictions but I wouldn't narrow that down to one. Audience Member 3: Yeah, one comment to that AWS we also use AWS because it's convenient. And that's basically and I don't think that AWS is going to disappear any time soon. And I also don't think that it's a problem because it's a great infrastructure and we would be stupid not to use it. But we should use AWS and Google and Azure at the same time and make sure it's distributed across all those, to not empower one of them too much. But I have another question. You talking about good and bad and values changing. Erm I'm afraid that values don't just change over time but they change just based on location. If you go 2000 Kilometres south, what we see good here, might seem bad there.

How do you think blockchain will address these kinds of local value differences? I mean we are talking about global initiatives but we also always will have local cultures. Nina: I think that's actually difficult to answer on a global basis, because I still believe that technology, as such is neutral erm and so it's rather the use of the technology that would be addressed by your question. Right. Erm Kei: And I think also the potential way of framing it, is that a lot of these systems that are being built are ideally opt-in systems, but I mean maybe that's too much of a farce because they're opt-in, until they're not any more. But I think in terms of doing kind of local values, that that would be the argument for blockchain (inaudible) to address such things. Erm the other way would be to be able to design like value modulation within systems themselves and you know what do you do, maybe through the consensus system maybe it's proof of something else that we haven't seen yet.

I don't know. Nina: Yeah, difficult and maybe just add another thought. I personally think you know, the really interesting invention are tokens. So blockchain solved the problem of trust and we might see more techniques develop over time which solve another of those basic problems also working with the tokens because tokens and the meaning of digital identity of something, of whatever that wont, that will not go away any more and I think we will see more technologies added to work with these tokens.

And maybe you know, there will be some way to address that certain areas may want to, you know, handle things differently. Audience Member 4: Hi, I'm interested in the question of the 90% of people who would struggle to engage with this conversation. Erm, by the mid-90s the web had become a place that most people with a computer and access to the internet could kind of work out how to make a webpage, get it out there onto a server, share it with people and start to experiment with those network effects. So what it meant to share and have messages and to be able to communicate with people all around the world.

And that was one very important way in which a mass of people started to understand what life in the networked age might be, for better or for worse. Erm, when do you think we are going to see maybe the same level of accessibility for DAO building tools or token building systems, where we can expect to see the 90% of people starting to experiment with new forms of local governance, when is that, when am I going to have that at my hands? Kei: I think 1 to 2 years. (laughing) Nina: So we can maybe, you know, there should be a lot of developers also here. What's your, what's your thinking about this? So maybe raise your hand if you believe within 1 to 2 years? Kei: (laughing) Nina: Ahh, that's quite little.

What about 3-5 years? Kei: (laughing) Nina: Alright. That's even more. And then maybe 5 to 10 years? Audience Member 4: Can I steal a follow up question then to that?
Okay. So we're, based upon that poll, in the 3 to 5 years area. So looking at what network culture is doing at the moment and I, maybe we can't blame network culture, I don't know but it seems that it has a part to play in what's happening in global politics. Erm can we afford to wait for 2 years in order for more people to be involved in these kinds of experiments that are happening amongst the people in this room? And what does it mean that the people who are able to build these systems are the ones that are building it? What kind of affordances are they building into the infrastructures and what kind of a world are we, are they going to be making possible, through those infrastructures? Just a little question. Greg: I have a quick response to that one. One thing that I've noticed in the kind of in the wake of the Charlottesville debacle, were a number of people who's websites had been taken down because of hate content, jumping from DNS provider to DNS provider calling for the construction of a new decentralised internet that will resist censorship.

And I think, a month ago, that would be something that anyone in this room could say they believed in pretty firmly, without any hesitation. But I think now we might want to hesitate. So do we really want these tools, I think we need to think about, exactly what you said, what values we are building in at this stage and what that means when people who may have less positive intentions start using those tools. Nina: And I think, you know, I often hear that question with regard to the changes in law. Can we afford that our law is so slow in adopting to the, you know, technological world that is currently our there? And I always say, well it's not really a question if we can afford that.

It's simply a question, you know, how quick can we get people on board understand it and act accordingly. So in my sense you know amending, actually amending the laws in your sense it will be like you know, when will we get the developers to concentrate more on the user? And then on maybe the core technology, which may be a little bit more interesting to work on, I don't know. Kei: And I think just quickly, I'd say that probably we can't necessarily afford the time yet we should still continue acting. Nina: Yeah. There's no choice I guess. Audience Member 5: Is it on? Yeah. Hi, one more input to that. I think it's as she described that blockchain is like a big gun and we don't want to hand it out to people without training them.

I think that's also one of the main reasons why we'd rather say 3 to 5 years than 1 to 2 years. But my question would be, is we have mentioned earlier that education is a real big part of the adoption problem for blockchain. But who's going to pay for that education? Because education today is like mostly state driven, or corporate driven or whatever. So do you see any new way of educating the broad mass about technology that seems very abstract to most of them. Today as you mentioned already, you can't, you wont do any Ethereum trading because the user interfaces are so bad. But if we then put out the blockchain, which is available to everybody today people could create DAOs that we don't want, they could put money in peoples hands and then these kinds of things couldn't be turned off. But it can't be built into the technology, to be able to turn it off, so it's an educational problem again.

So how do you think this will be addressed? Nina: It's a good point and I think you know, like the Blockchain Hub from Shermin who spoke earlier we need more of those initiatives trying to actually bring the message out. And, you know, we always have this nice little discussion you know, why shouldn't we start already in first class in school, with another language, which is coding? Just to, to stress the importance that in the future, you know, you wont get around that any more.

Kei: And I think one potential Audience Members: No, that’s absolutely wrong. It's not about coding. That is the problem. This conversation is Audience Member 1: This is the issue. This conversation is not reaching people because it is being driven by a technologist frame which is, which will never reach people and so it has to start with values. It has to start with something that people care about. So really, education, I think should be about, do, how do you feel about your community? What are the core values that are important for human society to sustain itself? And if that was part of the core curriculum, coding is important to understand structurally and the logic and those kinds of things but that is just a tool. And in terms of eduction all of this is free, it's free now, it's open on the internet. If you have access to the internet you can teach yourself this but people are not motivated to do that.

And so the question is, is fundamentally why? And the other point I would say, is that we are all sitting here having a very cosy discussion and we are obviously able to afford to come to this conference and be in Berlin and we're interested intellectually and so we are all sort of, of one tribe. And do we truly understand how everybody else, that 99.9% out there that this is impacting their world, their existence, their future. That, that everything we are talking about here, which they have no comprehension of is impacting them. What is our responsibility to ensure that they understand? And, and it's paternalistic for us to say that, that we have this big gun and we don't want to share it. Anyways, and my colleague has a comment. Audience Member 5: No I just, I'm just thinking that if you want to educate whoever. I mean IPDB has a lot of knowledge, why don't you put a course on Khan Academy to make it free for everyone and I mean Khan Academy is even well funded and they are a couple of other platforms which are free and can be accessed even in Afghanistan if people understand English.

Though this particular platform is getting spread in multiple languages right now because Bill Gates supports it. So for coding, frankly I mean I'm in AI. I do a lot of AI so you know, what do you do in 20 years when machine codes better than most of people? So, you know, yes it's a language but frankly you can learn Python so quick even if you had 0 understanding on whatsoever in coding before. So I would be careful about this. But just you know, suggestion if people are caring about certain things why not put it out there on something like Khan Academy? Nina: Well I think there are a lot of, on YouTube, you will find basically everybody from us with a lot of speeches which everybody can look up. But I don't see the contradiction between discussing values and understanding technology. I think that must work hand in hand, right. So values they're, at least in Germany you will find some school topics where those things are discussed. And I'm actually a great fan of offering more insights into how technology works and that doesn't strictly, must strictly mean that they actually learn one single coding language, but rather understand how this technology is built and you know how this might end up in AI and so that they have a chance to understand the future when they will be grown up.

How actually their environment is working. I think that is important in addition, not instead of discussing values. Kei: I just want to add as well that I think a lot of that I mean earlier we were speaking about social values around IPDB and putting a tutorial on these sites would be quite remarkable. I think there's been a lot of work done on communication around this. But I also think slightly, kind, of, unpopular opinion is that this coding site is as you mentioned supported by a charity by Bill Gates.

So I think in terms of education a lot of it also means resource and human attention and how do you have resources and human attention? And how do you make sure that those are values in and of themselves? And those get supported first and foremost? So I think maybe with you know one of the things about the strange space that we find ourselves in with ICOs at the moment is that there's a lot of capital floating around and if there were community standards potentially, you know a suggestion of 20% or more put into put into education or communication or user interface, whatever you see, but really put the resources behind that education rather than having it always be left as a second thought.

Peter Harris: To provide a brief example of education coming from completely outside this bubble that we are in. I just saw an announcement that Ghostface Killah from Wu Tan Clan has a crypto-project, it's called Crypto Rules Everything Around Me, C.R.E.A.M. So, the answer about blockchain education is it's going to come from everywhere, because everybody is getting into it. (light applause) (whispered) Wu Tan. (laughter) (applause) Greg: So as much as I'd like to give Wu Tan Clan the last word, I think we have time for one more question. If it can be Wu Tan related that would be great. If not, that's okay too. Audience Member 6: Hi guys. I would like to flip back my question to the initial topic which is how can we build the good without unleashing the bad.

And I pretty much believe in the concept of blockchain and its potential and we were talking about governance and stuff like that before. So my question to you guys and I'm very curious about your thoughts on matters actually. Which impact would this technology have on environmental issues and if possible, how would you govern it? Kei: Well could I also just ask about your question. Do you mean what impact will that technology have on environmental issues or what will, what kind of governance impact will it have on environmental issues? Audience Member 6: So the first thing.

Kei: Okay. Audience Member 6: The first thing. So I mean, nowadays when we talk about proof of concept for example it's of course requiring a lot of electricity and stuff like that and as we all know, we only have one planet. So how are we going to cope with that despite switching to other concepts like proof-of-stake or proof-of-space or I don't know, you know. Nina: Or even the IOTA way of handling it right. I think that it will develop, you know, this proof-of-stake was just the first idea how to deal with the consensus question, or proof-of-work sorry, the proof-of-work.

So I don't think that this needs to remain as it is, infinitely. If that was what your question was relating to, that like the Bitcoin concept uses a lot of energy? Yeah, I think that will, that that will change over the time. You see a lot of other systems now, now evolve which do not rely upon this specific consensus mechanism any more. Kei: And I really believe it's the most vital question potentially in the blockchain space, before automation at the moment. And switching to a different consensus mechanism, proof-of-stake, what have you I think that is probably the most urgent technical accomplishment for the network. Because the environmental impact, we cannot continue replicating the kind of (inaudible) digital impact of the regular economy and just replace it with a new one.

It simply wont work. So I think that's the thing that people should give their most focus to, whether developers, designers, advocaters at the moment. Because it's just necessary to move to a proof-of-stake or other system. There's also, this great project recently by Julian Oliver called HARVEST. That was using solar panels to harvest e-cash to support climate modelling. And to me it really brought the kind of discourse to the fore of switching to more sustainable consensus mechanisms, as well as the kind of full supply chain behind the blockchain and full infrastructure behind the blockchain.

So you should check it out. Tim Daubenschütz: Hey. Yeah I just also wanted to give a shout out to Terra0. They are a project out of Berlin and they do self owning forests. So they give actually each forest a way to bootstrap their own DAO. Which means you actually have to pay the forest in order to like harvest from it. So that is kind of another take, that doesn't only address like the consensus algorithms but it allows you to, you know, augment the environment with like smart contracts. Like, think not only in terms of forests, like think in terms of animals or in terms of CO2 levels right.

You could all augment that and like put it out of control of human beings actually, to like, yeah, destroy forests or the environment. Kei: Yeah and I really like what that technology does for kind of re-animating forests or other inanimate objects for us. Erm, just in terms I've often thought like, what if there was a wifi mesh network in an environmental site? Would people value it more and would it be protected more? So I see kind of the Terra0 project as kind of, reclaiming the aidency of what we don't normally recognise of having such.

So thanks for mentioning it. Audience Member 7: I think one of the big questions in blockchain is how do you do enforcement? And that's been a lot of talk today about different ways to use contracts and perhaps getting a framework, a legal framework and so on. Erm, an autonomous process with enforcement, that sounds a little bit dangerous. What are your thoughts on enforcement in the blockchain space seeing that it has become so political in the sense that there is so much opportunity of change and so on.

How do you see enforcement going into the blockchain technology? Nina: Okay, so there are erm different aspects to this. Just the automation as such, I don't think is that problematic it's like you can't undo a broken egg either right. But what you have to deliver then is remedy. So you've got to deliver a new egg, but you don't have to, you know, un-break the broken egg. That's you know, that's the way how it could be handled on the blockchain as well.

Same as with other ledgers like the land register or the commercial register where things will also not be deleted, but they will be marked as invalid and then the correct entry will be put underneath it. There is, I think even more interesting is the current question, well you know if I don't know my counterparty you know, how can I actually enforce if something went wrong? And I think we will see more and more solutions for that. First of all the amendment of the anti-money laundering directive on the EU level. Which will oblige any access providers, so the wallets providers and the exchanges to do actually full KYC, to know their customers and then obviously you can discuss if something went wrong and somebody has to claim something back and has a title actually to claim it back, that he might get the information on who he actually needs to approach from those access providers. And then on the other hand, once we see the digital identity of people solved and I think that wont take that much longer because there are just too many business ideas out there which rely upon knowing the identity of your counterparty.

Then you know, that's another step where you can actually get closer to solving the enforcement problem. I am aware that you know, not everyone here is fond of those ideas. I mean there will be always, I think ways to use the blockchain on an anonymous basis but you know, for certain things I think it makes sense to actually know who you're transacting with. Greg: Alright, I'm going to use my prerogative one last time and offer both of our guests one chance to give a closing thought, or something interesting they're working on , or something they want to leave us all with this afternoon. Nina: Well I think there hadn't been a mentioning of the blockchain bundesverband yet. So I'd like to raise that again, if somebody wants to get involved you know, wants to join the working groups on certain topics.

Then you know, please get in touch. The working groups are open to everyone. Greg: Maybe explain what that is quickly for everyone? Nina: The blockchain bundesverband, thank you for the hint. I was mentioning that so often already. Okay, blockchain bundesverband is like an association which was formed, and Greg was involved, in June this year which aims to be the voice for blockchain startups in Germany. Trying to figure out where the pinpoints in our current legal framework which need to be adopted to actually enable blockchain ventures to operate out of Germany.

So that's the main goal and you know, we have about 22 working groups for all sorts of areas connected with blockchain trying to actually bring together those pinpoints. Kei: Let's see. Erm not necessarily any announcements. I guess just in currently my researching and thinking just that I see blockchain as really potentially pivotal. Whether it's DAOs or potentially prediction markets for the future of the transition from the economy to an automated economy and that transition of labour and the ability to do micropayments and not city-wide things, not nationwide things, but fractile governance. And if anyone want to talk about this later today or tomorrow, I'm around. And that's it. Yeah. Greg: Good. Well thank you very much. It's been a very interesting session and thank you all for your wonderful questions. (Applause) (Applause) (Music) (Applause) (Music).

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