It is very interesting to study a technology that doesn’t rely on trust. However, in the end, the most interesting thing it tells us is not how we should build a network but rather the social value of trust in society.
More than economic power, more than scientific advances, trust is really what builds wealth in a society. When you can trust your neighbor not to steal, not to lie, not to try to ruin you, the increases in efficiency are gigantic. In the comparison between Bitcoin and the Visa network, the performance gain in efficiency of trust vs. lack of trust is 400,000x.
My hat is off to Bitcoin. Not only for developing an interesting technology, but also for teaching me in quantitative terms just what it is that I gain by raising trustworthy children. The time and effort spent to make sure that my children are trustworthy and just is more valuable than all of the STEM education I could throw at them. More.
Jonathan Bartlett is the Research and Education Director of the Blyth Institute.
See also: See also: Is Bitcoin safe? Why the human side of security is critical (Johnny Bartlett)
“Artificial” artificial intelligence: What happens when AI needs a human I? (Sometimes it’s really people pretending to be machines)
Johnny Bartlett on why we should teach algebra