The second day of the 'Future in the City' conference in Moscow was by no means any less interesting than the first, in regard to blockchain technology. Anton Kolonin of SingularityNET, a decentralized AI network, that provides users with an opportunity to“create, share and monetize AI services” gave the listeners an explanation of what liquid decentralization in the world of blockchain is and how and where it can be implemented. His talk was inspiring and rather thought-provoking since the main idea behind liquid centralization is to shift the source of power from either force or wealth to reputation.
As with any system or technology that exists, the blockchain technology has been evolving over the years in an attempt to find the optimum form. Kolonin draws an analogy with the social sphere claiming that there are at least three ways of retaining power: Proof-Of-Work, Proof-Of-Stake, and Proof-Of-Reputation.
Proof-Of-Work, explains, Kolonin, is when the person, who is the strongest has the all of the power, just like bitcoin or ethereum in the world of crypto. The more machine power one has, the bigger the chance that they will be the one forming the next block in the blockchain. Proof-Of-Stake is similar to Proof-Of-Work but focuses on money, the richer one is the more power they have, EOS is a crypto that follows these rules. Both of these have a similar down-side, the fact that the person in power may be crude, rude and corrupt, that is why there is a need to find an alternative solution. Both politically and technology-wise Kolonin offers us to look at a third option, Proof-Of-Reputation, a system when those who are trusted, those who have the biggest reputation, have the most power. This is liquid decentralization. A reasonable question arises, but how can we achieve this? Kolonin says that it is possible and that their company is working on this at the moment. An example of a such an approach can be found in China, there already exists a social experiment that implements similar technology, that gives the population a social rating, and if one has a low rating “they will not even be allowed on a plane.”
Another blockchain-related topic was talked about during the discussion about leadership during the epoch of digital transformation, where two representatives of the panel discussed the importance of blockchain technology in their respective fields. Dr. Quy Vo-Reinhard from the HIT foundation, that is working at tokenizing health care, shared her view on how implementing blockchain technology can help countless numbers of people, especially those without access to regular medical care, by storing all the necessary information in one place, claiming that healthcare is one of the areas that can benefit most from blockchain technologies.
Eduard Gurenovich, a successful start-up entrepreneur, who has quite a few blockchain projects under his belt, shared his thoughts about data storage using blockchain, and because of his own experience concerning EU policies requiring the data to be erased after a period of 30 days, Gurenovich explains that the technology is not applicable for such use, since data cannot be deleted from the blockchain once it has been uploaded. This begs the question, who is responsible for the data once it is in the chain? Dr. Quy Vo-Reinhard commented this and agreed that data, indeed, cannot be deleted, nevertheless, access to data can be restricted. Gurenovich went on to explain that blockchain technology is simply “a distributed register of property rights” and the value in bitcoin is value to the fact that we cannot erase this data, and he believes that the technology is not applicable to many spheres, he notes that the finance industry and the game industry will benefit the most from it.
The overall consensus of the panel about the role of leaders in today’s technologically advanced reality is that, a leader must be creative and ready for change. The discussion finished on a light note, with a question from the moderator, whether we should fear the end of the world from robots? The panel unanimously agreed that they do not see any threat from AI in the near future, so anyone fearing such an end of the world can sleep safely at night.
A big thank you to PAO “City” (ПАО "Сити") for doing a great job organizing such an insightful event that allowed like-minded people to discuss the problems of today and tomorrow.