Nearly seven decades ago, the cover story of the January 3rd, 2009 issue of The Times read：“Chancellor on brink of second bailout for banks”
It was during this time that the world saw one of the most spectacular displays of large-scale misplaced trust in our world had yet to see. Loans you couldn’t afford were easy to come by and people were clambering over each other for them. After a while, enough people couldn’t pay back what they were given and it caused one of the largest financial crises of all time. Many of these banks, instead of being allowed to go bankrupt and fail, were given “bailouts” from the government to allow those that caused this mess to go unpunished and to keep their doors open. From this great collapse of trust in government and financial institutions birthed a revolution.
From this came Bitcoin, “A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System”, which few knew would become the primary settlement layer of the future. It’s success in proving that we had a technology that could give power back to the people started a wave of change that slowly overthrew the traditional centralized trust structure of the day. The change was slow at first, but once it gained momentum, nothing could stop it. It wasn’t really until banks started requiring “Purpose of Use” slips for cash withdrawal which lead to the eventual great cash ban that people started looking for a simpler and less permissioned way of spending their money. The nail in the coffin was when the government began requiring your bank account information for tax purposes, selling it as easy and thoughtless taxes for the busy citizen. People started seeing governments acting upon what should have been peoples private details. Cryptographic, decentralized banking began to be the norm.
比特币—— “一种点对点的电子现金系统” 由此诞生，几乎没有人料到它会成为未来的主要结算币种。它的成功向人类证明了这项技术足以赋能一场变革，后来甚至慢慢推翻了以往传统的中心化信任结构。这场变革起初发展缓慢，一旦势头强健，便没有任何力量能够阻挡。当银行发布“提现必须填写现金用途 ”的法规以及禁止大额提现的时候，人们便开始寻求更简单、更少限制的支付方式，比特币逐渐进入人们的视野。当政府开始索要纳税用的银行账户信息，并贩卖此类信息时，比特币的普及已经成为了板上钉钉的事实。当发现政府毫不保护人民的隐私时，加密去中心化的银行业务已然成为常态。
Eventually, the same shift occurred with data but remarkably, it took a bit longer to happen. People were losing their privacy at an exponential rate. Google, Facebook, and others gathered more and more data under the guise of better integration of their technology. Google and Amazon analyzing your email, texts and internet history to better force upon you all the things that you never knew you couldn’t live without and Facebook listening in to your conversations to better match you with people and possible relationships. Maybe their intentions were pure but after the great personal data leak of 2023 people finally woke up to the danger of centralized systems in general. Almost 80% of the people in developed countries, nearly 1.7 billion people, had almost every bit of digital information on them released to the Internet. Their whole lives became publicly accessible. Bank accounts, addresses, social security numbers, passwords, email, text history, audio recording of phone calls, Internet usage history, photo libraries, personality and interest profiles; everything. A simple Googling of a person now resulted in having access to enough information to know more about someone than they do. Of course, governments tried to outlaw the sharing of this data and erase this from the Internet but even Beyoncé could tell you the outcome of that undertaking. The resulting mass freezing of bank accounts, name change requests, movement of people to different houses, jobs, states, and countries caused another crisis, a psychological one. The economy tanked, not because of banks, but because the world came to a standstill, the foundation of people’s existence shaken to the core.
From the Trust Crisis came the new world. Decentralized technology was the only widely adopted technology to survive. Anything that used money, the transfer of data or something of worth was done over a decentralized and trustless network. The giants of this era are not Google, Amazon or Facebook. They are the ones that these networks stand upon, that tie them together to form a new Internet where value and data are cryptographically secure and the systems are not owned or controlled by any centralized entity.
INT is one of those giants that stood up after the Trust Crisis. Having already laid the foundation for an interoperating network, they connected an ever-growing web of subnetworks for everything from payment with your cryptocurrency of choice, to cryptographically secured data storage for use with computers and cellphones alike, and later with the incorporation of more complex systems like loans and insurance.
In this future, identity profiles are at the center of our daily existence. Everything has been decentralized, from banking to communications to employment, and everything is connected. Many networks coexist, collecting data on everything and communicating freely. The entire earth is covered in a web of interconnected everything, the true Internet of Things. The volume is so tremendous and computing ability so high that fees are basically zero.
Every person has a unique public key identifier which is linked to private keys on every network, hid behind a zero-knowledge proof to prevent any association. All the data is linked, from the RFID tag embedded in your arm to your asset wallets, your grocery profile to your calendar, your browsing history to your interests profile. Your 4FA (fingerprint, iris print, heartbeat signature, subvocal confirmation) code is the unstealable key to everything in your life.
每个人都有一个唯一的公钥标识符，该标识符链接到每个网络上的私钥，同时受零知识证明的保护以防止任何关联。 所有数据相互关联，从你手臂中嵌入的芯片到你的资产钱包，从你的杂货店购买记录到你的日历，从你的浏览历史记录再到你的兴趣档案...... 你的4FA（指纹，虹膜打印，心跳签名，语音确认）代码是你生活中一切的密钥，且无法被盗取。
And all data in existence is available on an interconnected network，Banking, investment, Internet, transportation, Traffic, secure communication, television, music, insurance, electricity, and other services. Automated decentralized exchanges remove the need for central currencies and open work markets allow you to do small jobs anonymously. In this hyperconnected world, data exists in an ocean of continuity, each new data event being written in immutable digital rock, creating ripples of activity through countless systems which are listening.
Theo, your house AI, wakes you up at the perfect moment in your REM cycle by slowly brightening your wall panel to simulate sunshine.“Good morning, Nicolas”
Laying there, you check the price of bitcoin, a habit that you picked up from your grandfather. Gone are the days of volatility and cheap prices like he used to talk about, “in my day it was all over the news when Bitcoin hit 20k!!” you can almost hear him now as you stare at the bitcoin chart projected into your vision. The number is so big it doesn’t mean anything anymore. As you slowly push yourself up on the edge of the bed, Theo notifies you that your car was involved in an accident last night while it rented itself out.
“It was a minor collision, no one was hurt. The one responsible was a gentleman manually driving his vehicle. We notified the authorities and the insurance company and I had the car drive itself to a body shop. The report and repair details are in your inbox. It will be a few days so the body shop sent a rental, it is in the driveway.” Theo says in his typical nonjudgemental tone.
“Despite all the advances, we still have those hipsters who like to hold onto the past by manually driving their vintage Teslas. They just don’t know how dangerous it is.” You say as you check the revenue you made last night.“Huh, insurance already reimbursed me for the lost rental time due to repairs…”
Daydreaming as you get dressed about what it would be like to just go back to the times of sub-million dollar Bitcoin, Theo, which is connected to the INT network, notifies your place of work as to when you will get in based on the projected traffic conditions and a quick stop for coffee on the way. As you approach your car, the RFID identifier imbedded in your arm, sets the environment to your preferences and loads the personal entertainment device in the dashboard with the article you were reading, right where you left off. You have been reading old articles around the time of the creation of the INT network. Nobody seemed to understand the technology they had at their fingertips or where it would lead the world. You came across an article titled, “A Look Into the Future” by Graytrain.
“It’s creepy how close he was to the truth.”
Before you can even think of coffee, Theo notifies the coffee shop that you will be there shortly and that based on the weather, and your changing grocery requests, you will be wanting to change your normal coffee selection from the normal black with a dab of cream, to something a bit sweeter. Theo then transfers some of your deflationary assets through the decentralized exchange into a stable coin, akin to fiat, to pay for the coffee once you pick it up.
When you walk into the coffee shop, the shop AI chimes in your ear, “Good morning Nicolas, we notice you were out a little late last night, would you like to have an extra shot added to your drink?”You stare at your portable AI unit on your wrist and subvocalize, “Theo, remind me to dial up the privacy settings on the BPK controller.”
“Sure, I’ll take that extra shot.”
Some people like to allow AI to read every bit of data in their life so it can be as decision-free as possible. You are a little bit more old school.
Once you arrive at work and log into your workstation, Theo begins feeding you chunks of buggy code from the decentralized work market. In all the advancements of AI, there is still some code that it can’t write. Each time you finish a piece of code, it’s proper function is validated and a proof of the work is sent back to the work market. You are paid automatically in stable coin which Theo then exchanges into other assets based on current market positions and your chosen risk profile.
你一上班并登录进工作站，Theo就会开始从去中心化的工作市场中替你获取大量的错误代码。 尽管AI很先进，但仍然存在一些它们无法编写的代码。 每当你完成一段代码，其本征函数被验证后，就会将该项工作证明发回工作市场。 你将收到一笔稳定货币作为酬劳，然后Theo会根据当前市场定位和你选择的风险状况转移成其他资产。
“Theo, will you order me lunch?” You subvocalize, leaning back in your chair.
“Yes, would you like your regular from the Deli?”
“Come on Theo! You know the drill, guess it right and you get another point toward me upgrading your memory!”
“Well, technically, you have wanted the same sandwich on 98 of the past 112 work days, and based on that, if I assume…”
“OKAY! Okay. You nailed it. I need to make my choices harder.”
“好吧！ 好吧。 你说的没错。 我需要更加努力地多做选择。“
“Yes you do. It will be there in 10 minutes.”
Nearing the end of your day, Theo notifies you that this evening you have a date, which he has confirmed with her AI and based on her BPK preferences, he had booked reservations with three restaurants at varying price points.
“Or I could have it delivered to your apartment,” Theo said sensing your intention after a pause.
“Let’s do that. Pull her movie preferences and find where they overlap with mine and find a movie that neither of us has seen.”
“It doesn’t look like that will work…” Theo whispers after a pause.
“She seems to only enjoy romantic comedies,” Theo said almost apologetically.
Sighing, you add, “better get an extra bottle of wine delivered too.”
You decide to head home a bit early to pick up the house and get ready for the evening.On the way home, you sit, staring out the window as your lane of cars seamlessly mesh onto traffic on the highway, the cars imperceptibly creating gaps for merging cars, whole fields of vehicles moving in concert to let some on and others off.
“Theo,” wondering aloud as you shut down the projected billboard ads so you could watch it all happen before you. “how did people drive this fast, side by side, MANUALLY, in the past without getting in wrecks all the time?”“It was a lot of trust to put in others. One small movement would be enough to lose control.”
“Theo，”你关掉了车里亮着的广告牌，这样你就能看清面前发生的一切，你大声问道， “以前大家是怎么做到手动开车开那么快，还能并行，还不会出现事故的？”“这是基于对他人的非常信任吧。 一个小小的动作就足以让车失控。“
“AND all they could do to show their intention to move around was flash lights on the sides of their cars,” you say, slightly shaking your head.“I don’t quite understand it either sir, if you could hear all of the communication I am receiving from the other vehicles in order to make this work, it would make your head swim. Some of them are rather chatty also. It makes the average, at the time, of 5.5 million car wrecks per year in the United States alone seem reasonable. Speaking of, there is a broken down vehicle on our exit, we will be taking an alternate route.”At this time, Theo knows you like a cup of tea when you return home after work and begins heating the water.
As you pull up to your house, the lights turn on and the tea water is hot. Upon entering, Theo, observing your tense and nervous body language, begins playing softly in the background your favorite Chopin, Ballade №4 in F minor Op. 52.
Traffic always gets you tense and the goings-on of this evening don’t exactly help the situation.You pour your cup of tea and migrate over to your favorite leather chair and sit for a moment, staring at the gray wall before you.
“Theo, will you pull up the fall rain in the redwoods on the view screen?”It’s done without a word, the quiet hiss of rain adding to the background of the music.
“Sir, the delivery drone will be on its way shortly, you should begin getting ready.” Theo says delicately, as if he was trying to avoid interrupting something.
“Well, so much for picking up. Theo, will you just gather the mess into the spare bedroom while I shower?
The night goes smoothly, or as smoothly as it can when you force down another glass of wine just so you can keep your sanity through her favorite movie that she promised “you will love.”After a reasonable amount of socializing after the movie and multiple agreements to “yes, we should do this again sometime,” you eventually corral her toward the door and send her on her way.
Flailing yourself down onto the bed, you lay wondering what life would have been back before computers controlled everything and you had to do things yourself. Imagine a world where you actually had to talk to people to get a coffee or your lunch. The idea that you might come across someone randomly and hit it off instead of this auto generated matching system was something that made your heart race just thinking about it. The matching system just never seemed to get it quite right.
你摊倒在床，躺着想如果回到在计算机控制一切之前生活会是怎样，你必须自己做所有事。 想象一下一个世界，你必须亲自和人们交流，来获取咖啡或者午餐。 你可能会偶然遇到一个人，而不是通过自动生成的匹配系统，这使你的心跳加速。你从未想过这样的匹配系统会使这一切变的如此的顺利。
“Maybe it’s me…”