Fueling the Decentralization Movement - panel with Paige Peterson from MaidSafe

Starting in about 10 minutes after this thread was created:

Fueling the Decentralization Movement - The Future of Money & Technology Summit 2014

Panel with:

Paige Peterson, MaidSafe
Sam Yilmaz, Decentralized Applications Fund
Joel Dietz, Swarm
Christian Peel, Ethereum


Yay Paige!

If I had to explain the difference between Centralization and Decentralization, I would say…

Centralization is power through concentration.
Decentralization is power through cooperation.


Interesting stuff alright - I particularly was interested in the comments towards the end of video about engineering issues and sizes of corporations because it has been something I have been wondering about wrt MaidSafe.


This was/is a big thing for us, a big part of the crowdsale was to create many maidsafes in the form of completely independent pods (we did not achieve as much liquidity as we had wished to do this as much as I would want, but its not over, there are other options for us to fund, best though will be self funded through network launch and safecoin values increasing). Who knows if Mastercoin recovers then we will have funds to do much more.

To me we cannot grow too large as we would fail to follow the vision and get distracted into protecting profits etc. to me the answer is create competition and follow the vision.

I am not sure I believe total decentralisation of companies/groups etc. is possible, but it can be much much better than today. I think you need folks in rooms with whiteboards and debates and see the eyes of the other people, have beers and discuss issues half sober and in social settings all helps as well. So I guess my opinion is lots of small dedicated independent groups who more or less can work together but seek out differences and allow different approaches to be tried and tested.

Find the crazy ones and don’t control them, let evolution answer all the issues and make sure to remove as many egos as possible and accept and encourage differences.


On that note, let’s start again a beer discussion night in Troon :wink:


Good idea, we should do that.


We used to do Thursday night pub quiz at the Lonsdale (we always came last as we are rubbish and to busy chatting)


Sounds perfect, I’m rubbish at quizes too !

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I am still absorbing the possibilities for the revolution but I guess what I was getting at was related to the comment by a couple of the panellists relating to corporations like Apple - I think one comment was along the lines of: “The iPhone project was about three times more complex than the Apollo program.” - which is my concern. I think the potential for MaidSafe is enormous, with paradigm shifting possibilities about how things are done in the world economy - and, for the thing I am most interested in, how Homo sapiens survives the current mass extinction event. If the people and corporations - who really run the joint - react badly, it could be a very rough ride, but if there is an “uneasy truce”, it seems to me that some very big corporations will still need to exist - to put the “Apollo” projects together? - and I am thinking more of hardware again, than software - and I am aware of some bright spots with “Open Hardware” projects - I just don’t think they have the same potential as the software projects.

Hi Philip,

I argue that we currently need organizations big enough to have such big objectives and coordinate the actions of smaller entities/individuals to achieve these big “Apollo” projects (governments or corporations). The main problem of explicitly constructing as a society such big organizations to achieve big goals is that these big organizations have an equally big life-span: for them to grow big and for them to die off after the purpose has been served.

The alternative to this top-down organization where a big corporation/government dictates the actions of its employees/citizens, is for a bottom-up organization: it requires that every individual has the capability to see mutual benefit in temporarily aligning interests for mutual gain and progress. We currently are not able to do this as a human species.

This is unfortunate because the top-down approach we currently have is logically incapable to solve the problems we face. In order to build a bridge, we need an organization that is ‘bigger’ than this bridge (notice how easy it is for the human mind to imagine such a non-sensical comparison :wink: ). However, we currently face challenges of planetary size; to solve planetary problems in a top-down way, I argue we need bigger-than-our-planet organizations; we would have to be a multi-planet species to consider how to resolve this troubled component planet Earth.

This is my main argument - bar-banter-style - why we need to build the decentralized capabilities for the human species to collaborate on problems that are bigger than us, namely our own planet.



No argument with that at all - I guess the question comes down to: if there is no Kennedy who says we are going to the Moon and we are going to charge ALL taxpayers $10 per year (or whatever) for the next 20 years to do it - would the decentralised “alternative” economy be able to organise something like that? It seems unlikely to me . .

I argue we don’t have a choice, but to make that a reality. We will run out of time before we grow to the size of multi-planetary species where a multi-planetary president Kennedy charges all planets $10 per head per year to heal planet Earth.

The ‘thinking’ of a bottom-up organization, is more like an organism than an organization. Imagine the growth of an embryo into a human being. There is no equivalent president Kennedy that orders specific stem cells to take on specific functions. Rather evolution has found codes that allow local interactions to organize an entity bigger than the parts, a human being.

The human race is a part of this planets’ ecology that has grown to have dominant influence on the whole. If we want the whole to survive - as a preferred necessary condition for the human race to survive (at least for the near future) - we need to develop the capability for us humans to collaborate on a big scale without an as-big central coordination.

I agree, we currently do not have this capability, and we need to develop it urgently; but I argue it is our only viable option.


The daily trading volume for gold is 196 billion usd.

Bitcoin = 10 million usd average per day.

MaidSafeCoin = 12,500 usd average per day.

The reason for gold’s utility is the value transfer, it is difficult near impossible to counterfeit gold… gold is gold is gold.

Crypto Bitcoins for example bitcoins are bitcoin are bitcoin is a bitcoin. It is near impossible to counterfeit a bitcoin. Except a bitcoin is totally mobile. it is weightless and totally secure against counterfeit. This means that as a store of a value any crypto asset is far superior to gold for example.

These are values that have been established over the past thousands of years… it’ll be a little while to adopt the digital variant to storing your gold in counterfeit proof assets.

Clearly, bitcoin and safecoin has a huge marginal limit to approach in terms of fiat valuations


Be interesting to see how far crowdfunding goes in these areas as well. To do it properly though I think needs sanitised news, less government induced stress and real borderless co-operation for researchers (look up when ideas have sex in TED videos). Interested to see if as a community we would volunteer some cash to build roads, hospitals and moonshots :slight_smile:

Always said I was never scared of a challenge and wildly optimistic approach is my way, we can hope though given real education and less stress then we just might.



I hope you are right - but it would certainly help if the world could divert the almost $2 TRILLION a year it spends on stuff to kill people and destroy property into doing something useful . . I think things like MaidSafe will put pressure on these sorts of idiot expenditures too but that will also be dangerous for us . . but on the other hand, once MaidSafe has gone wild . . there should be no stopping it . . hopefully . .



That’s a key issue and will ensure Gold’s pre-eminence for more than “a little while”. Bitcoin’s “impossible to counterfeit” status is:

  • not proven, even if you accept the mathematical proof, it needs to be established empiracly
  • cryptocurrency properties are vulnerable to some unanticipated fault in maths and cryptography, not to mention a powerful actor making technological advances (e.g. NSA quantum computing work)
  • decentralised concensus networks themselves are unproven in the face of state-sponsored attacks

So while I’m a firm fan and believer in cryptocurrency, it is a long way IMO from the psychological and analytically understood status of Gold. Even of the USD - given the latter’s backing by the most powerful nation on the planet, and no doubt its Chinese successor.

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@ioptio Paige, I’m just watching the intros now and was urging you to ask the room who’d heard of MaidSafe! So glad you did :-), so what percentage of the room was it and how did that compare with Ethereum?

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It was about half the room, Ethereum was slightly more but not by much.

If you couldn’t tell, I was SUPER excited when Christian (Ethereum guy) asked Joel and myself what Swarm and MaidSafe could do that couldn’t be built on Ethereum… I was practically jumping out of my seat while Joel was answering. :stuck_out_tongue:


Paige, I felt like I was sitting in your seat - preparing my answers, and didn’t know what to say at that point so was very nervous for you… loved what you said there. And what you said on the broader philosophical issues earlier, about blockchain for business / auditable stuff, SAFE for personal / collective / cooperative. The whole thing went very well thanks to you.

Dan and I exchanged comments in a p2p group on facebook the day before the panel. It seems a lot of people are waking up to Project SAFE and liking it when set against its nearest comparison Ethereum. So big thanks to you for putting so much into educating people. :slight_smile: That was the impression I had from all the others on the panel - as Joel was pushing Swarm guy for an endorsement, the guy was very reticent despite having looked seriously into Ethereum. It came across as desperate to me. Very unlike the other Ethereum evangelists I’ve watched (not many) who seem very impressive and well prepared.

I’m wowed to hear so many were aware of MaidSafe. Brilliant! :slight_smile:

I found the whole thing fascinating and very encouraging. It gave me the impression that there are lots lots of people eager to see what SAFE can do at launch. That there are many people with apps (like the questioners in the audience) who know what they want to do, know what the platform they need has to deliver, just waiting for the capability to be proven.



Yea oor wee Paige did a cracking job there :smiley: Well done @ioptio strikes again :sunny: