Why We’ve Only Just Got Started in Web 3, Joseph Lubin of Consensys


Why We’ve Only Just Got Started in Web 3, Joseph Lubin of Consensys

October 2020

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Joe Lubin Co-Founder of Ethereum and Founder and CEO of Consensys talks about his continuous mission to improve Web 3’s fledgling but critical ‘trust layer’ for the Internet and how it can bring about ‘granular governance’. We cover his early background in machine learning and autonomous systems research and why he believes creating ‘AI Lego’ is as important to Web 3 as Money Lego. As well as the benefits and challenges of being a fast follower, the promise of ETH2 and improvements to Meta Mask as well as the roll out of their Ethereum Enterprise proposition Quorum and hints an exciting new DeFi Stack.

Posted by - October 2020

October 2020

Posted by

Key Themes:

  • AI Lego
  • Trust Revolution
  • DeFi
  • ETH2

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Jamie Burke 0:13
You’re an early stage web three founder apply to our award winning accelerator programme base camp at Outlier ventures.io slash base camp, we write your first $50,000 check and give you access to 200 mentors, including many of the leading web three founders, and a network of 1000s of the world’s leading investors and exchanges. We’ve helped over 30 startups from 15 countries from all around the world, raise 100 and $30 million in crowdfunding. It can help you fast track product market fit, and where relevant the launch of your token I’m really happy to welcome Joe Lubin, co founder of Ethereum, founder and CEO of consensus. Welcome, Joe. Thanks, Jerry. So I’ve been really looking forward to this one, we actually did try to get you on the podcast, technical problems, my and we failed.

Joseph Lubin 1:03
Aren’t we now on the podcast? Well,

Jamie Burke 1:06
technically, that’s right, exactly. So we are both on the podcast and streaming live. Thanks for thanks for correcting me on that one. So let’s get straight into it. So you’re one of the few people that can say that they’ve built a multi billion dollar network in the space that’s actually being used at scale, and growing. For those that don’t know, I mean, it’d be amazing, you’d have to be under a rock to not know Joe. But in quick summary, Joe creative co founded aetherium network and foundation with vitalik butor in and the job of that foundation is to make sure infrastructure works fairly and independently, and really set the precedent for how web three tokenized projects structured themselves. You almost simultaneously founded consensus, which at its core, and I’m sure this is a shifting definition. But last time I checked venture production studio and blockchain software development consultancy for decentralised applications, enterprise solutions and developer tools is still still how you say it.

Joseph Lubin 2:06
It has definitely evolved over the years. So should I jump in and try to Yeah, make it current. So we started about five years ago, started a year into the theorem project. As we were moving on the theorem project to launch version one of the theorem platform,

I started consensus to essentially

figure out what it would mean to build a decentralised application, what it would mean to wrap a company around a decentralised application, and effectively grow or open up an ecosystem. So we did start as a venture studio. Instead of believing that top down, we could architect a new global digital economy with these decentralised applications, it made more sense to just bring a bunch of entrepreneurs and technologists into the mix, so that we could explore the solution space, essentially. And so consensus, grew organically with the mission would have really been to just continue the vision and mission of the theorem project foster adoption for the technology. And as a result, we ran lots of experiments. We invested in lots of projects, we incubated lots of projects. So in a sense, we were a software company ourselves, we were of interest to do some of those projects on out. And we also started getting a lot of calls early on from different kinds of organisations that asked us to explain blockchain technology or explain Ethereum. And so we were this strange hybrid that was making investments in managing our portfolio and building software ourselves. In the last 18, or so months, as it became clear to everybody or even before that, that, hey, we do have an ecosystem here. It has opened up but consensus played a significant part in that and now, so many organisations, including big four other major consulting companies, major banks, are streaming into our ecosystem. And now we needed to, as we had done over a few times over the last few years, re architect ourselves, retool ourselves so that we could effectively compete in this essentially new it paradigm that was starting to really take hold. So some of the projects that we built in that venture context have gained real traction and had started to coalesce into what we think of now as the blockchain stack. So these are our theorem client project, which is called Pegasus, we now call it quorum, it’s a blockchain node that runs on the public aetherium network or private permission to theorem network. So essentially, the foundational element comes in a Java flavour and go flavour. On top of that we have infura, that can handle 10 billion queries per day on a really busy day. It also has a forthcoming a sort of private component to enabling private Connect activity to the main net or just private networks. On top of that we have in our codifier commerce and decentralised finance group, we have middleware software and a bunch of components software for payments in digital asset issuance, and full lifecycle and workflow and compliance and a bunch of other things. And on top of that, we have both the consumer interface metamask, the wallet system and browser system on mobile, as well as a b2b aspect to that where our metamask team is working with a bunch of product and other protocol teams to enable access to it. So one and a quarter million users have for the for these different projects. And so all of that was housed in a company called consensus AG, a Swiss based entity that owns a bunch of operating companies around the world. And we recently took the projects that compose that stack and spun them out into a company called consensus software. So a very focused to coherent integrated software product company. And consensus AG, which we’re calling the mash these days, is still managing our portfolio. So managing, creating some companies making new investments. But the that stack, which is now growing into a much more fleshed out operating system, is resident in a company called consensus software.

Jamie Burke 7:06
Yeah, I think it’s really interesting. Not only have you been innovating in technology, but you’ve been innovating in different commercial structures, about how you work alongside this open, open public network. And we’ll get into some of those elements a little bit later. And as a founder, how you how you manage the complexity of an evolving market, and also being a first mover. So some of the reasons why I really wanted to get this fireside chat is really your contribution to the space and your continued energy. I’m very envious. I don’t know, I don’t know what you’re on Joe, but it’s definitely working. So on the one hand, this is co founder Ethereum, you’ve introduced what promises to be a foundational layer to the internet at large, I think referred to as a trust layer. And but you’ve also birthed this new financial bottom up system that’s kind of native to the web, and could very likely Outlast either of us, and probably will. But it’s also, if you look at a theorem and eath, generally, probably one of the best investments anyone could have made over the same time period, in any asset class. And I say that not from a kind of speculative perspective. But in that process, you’ve managed to make a whole ecosystem of dabs and innovators financially independent. And they’ve come back reinvested billions of dollars back into r&d and and completing this web three stack, which is both on top of Ethereum and also beyond or adjacent to your probe. I’m very nervous about giving some stats now because I know you’re going to correct me they’re gonna be wrong, but I’m gonna do it anyway. So Ethereum, still dominates, it shares smart contracts 79%, daps, 82%, daily active users more than twice the closest competitors. you referenced, some of these kind of ventures or innovations have come out of consensus before metamask. 4 million plus downloads $10 billion value transferred on chain 130 K. Bc downloads with hyper ledger 20 K, faster theorem infrastructure 60 plus global clients and partners. Do you ever kind of just pause to reflect on all of that, kind of get the feeling that you don’t you’re just kind of on to the next thing, but we know Yeah, a huge contribution.

Joseph Lubin 9:28
I don’t feel the need to pause and reflect, though that much. And there’s just so much to do on so many fronts. So I and we generally move forward, because there’s always stuff that is exciting and better than what is in no need near in the rearview mirror. So some of those stats sounded pretty good, but they’re really quite small numbers. I guess the relative numbers are Compared to other protocols, but we are really in the early days or the foothills of a massive ascent in front of us. And so, yeah, I, I hope we are, we remain energised, because not only do we have a lot to build as an ecosystem, but I think there’s going to be some interesting and different kinds of resistance that that we’ll encounter, especially as the the world transforms into sort of New World Order, or new world disorder for a little while.

Jamie Burke 10:38
Yeah, and I think we’re gonna, let’s get straight into that mission piece. So, normally, when I have people on the podcast, I do my desk research and try to figure out that their background stuff that people might not know about, about somebody to contextualise them as a as a founder. So I’m pretty sure I did know that you had this role at Goldman Sachs, I believe in their private wealth division, as VP of technology. What I didn’t know was prior to that, and prior to Ethereum, you actually started out as an academic researcher, engineer in a very wide range of fields from machine vision, artificial neural networks, autonomous road vehicles, I believe, at Princeton, and then and then some commercial firms. And I think we were on a panel recently in the conversation came up about AI as autonomous economic agents, if that wasn’t what the panel was about, but it’s what you and I ended up speaking for most of the time about. So be great to just talk about this, this kind of unknown part of your career or background, at Princeton and beyond.

Joseph Lubin 11:38
Sure, so I ended up doing a junior paper and a thesis on AI. It was a boring, kind of AI, the Jr. paper was a survey of different exciting techniques from the perspective of 1986, so like 1000 years ago, and I was lucky enough to be hanging around the mental Science Laboratory at Princeton, where’s some cool connectionism work was being done. This was one of the names for neural networks research back then. And so I ended up working with an advisor and built a tool for teaching students, Lisp programming. So that was AI from his perspective. But fortunately, there’s a guy named Charlie Rosenberg who was hanging around who built this backpropagation based project that processed a bunch of texts and it was just, it’s just text and it sort of understood how to take some jumbled text and turn it into words. So it was just a two layer backpropagation network. Back then we we had like simpler architectures, the architectures have evolved significantly since then. But we had no data and no computational power. So the problems you could solve were really toy problems. What he did though, was he hooked it up to this speech synthesiser, which he tuned to sound like a young child. And so he had different time slices of learning of this network in and it sounded like the child was babbling and then starting to slightly form some words then starting to string the sounds together into words and then starting to string sentences together No, because of this synthesiser, it sounded just so incredible that this neural network was learning language. Of course, it wasn’t, it was a trek, but that, that basically, that and just hang around and reading all the the papers in the cognitive science lab that that’s what sort of captured my interest in I spent the next 10 years doing work in robotics, machine vision, different kinds of neural networks. So it was this is back in a time when you pretty much had to write your own backpropagation code, or there was a group, the Boston University at the central Centre for adaptive systems. So I thought that they did some brilliant work guy named Steven Grossberg was the head of that effort. And so I built a lot of simulations, we built an autonomous road vehicle simulation and taught a car to drive through that environment. And I moved on to a company called vision applications where we actually built a little model, four wheeled, robot and, and had DSP cards and vision system. And so I sort of built the nervous system and a bunch of the visual object processing and navigation.

Jamie Burke 14:50
Very cool. And we’ll kind of circle back to this a little bit later on with the concept of a Lego and how that might combine with money Lego, but if we can Come back to this this mission because, as you alluded to earlier, the idea that this is, we’ve only just started, I think a lot of new people entering the space kind of feel that they’re, they’re really far behind that they’ve kind of missed out on everything. And I think you’re probably competent to hear by somebody like you saying, is really not not got started yet. We’ve got, yeah, there we go. So I’ve heard he described this in different ways. And again, that’s just as a byproduct of evolving with the market and evolve thinking I do the same. The one that seems to be consistent throughout is this idea of a trust revolution. Could you explain the trust revolution, and in the context of this mission, the thing that motivates you?

Joseph Lubin 15:42
Sure. So the the context in which we all find ourselves embedded right now is one of a breakdown in trust structures on the planet, I think that breakdown has perhaps been happening for a small number of decades or forever, we as a society have done such spectacular things. And in order to organise ourselves to do spectacular things, you need to essentially command and control systems or governance systems or decision making systems or consensus formation systems. And for all the periods of history where communication was slow and expensive, it made decision making slow and expensive, and so we needed paradigms that were efficient. And so the paradigm that is most efficient in that situation is top down command and control. And we see that throughout society, in the military, and government and companies, etc. But if you do have the ability to communicate instantly and inexpensively and make decisions amongst groups virtually instantaneously, as we can do in some of these decentralised protocols now, then you maybe have a next experimental ground for trying out new systems, new paradigms of organisation. And I think it’s fair to say that the systems that we operate under in our society have done just enabled spectacular things across the world, but they are also easily exploited by lazy people or corrupt people or patient, well resourced actors. And so as, as a species, as a society, it would be really nice if we iterated and got to the point where we had governance and decision making systems that represented more people or more actors in in the context more fairly. And so I’m excited about the fact that Ethereum and many other protocols represent this new paradigm. And we’re in the early days of exploring how to build an architecture for the planet, the system’s architecture for the planet. So at the foundational layer, we have decentralised protocols and the more decentralised it is across more identified dimensions, the more difficult it will be to improperly manipulate data on the system or to corrupt the system or co OPT the system. And so, two projects currently, Bitcoin and aetherium are considered sufficiently decentralised by the SEC to have tokens not be considered securities, but also sort of set the standard for what a layer one system should be a foundational system. And this is enabling us to move from a world of subjective trust, subjective decision making, centralised decision making to a world of automated and objective trust. And so that foundation layer is hopefully going to grow in capability, use stability, scalability, privacy confidentiality plan, we’ve been working on that for years and have made tremendous progress, still lots of progress to go. And that trust layer is enabling right now. A new financial plumbing for the planet. So it is democratised in the sense that anybody can get in there and use it permissionless Lee, anybody can get in there and build something new. And like magic internet money, Lego protocols, snap it onto something that somebody else has built or snap them into exciting assemblies. Anybody can get in and fork somebody’s code and improve it or, or do something other than improving it, as we’ve seen.

And so it’s about building Building a new, more trustworthy it architecture for the planet. And that’s the trust Foundation, which enables the financial layer, calling it open decentralised finance of late. And on top of that, we’re going to have other layers with other functionality that the financial planning layer enables. I would argue that if we can build that financial layer, broad and deep and the agility, the speed of innovation, in that space is just astonishing. It’s so exciting what’s going on there. But if that thing grows strong, then just like the United States, where I would argue that it is the most, the largest, strongest, most vibrant, most agile economy, I would argue that it is that because it’s sitting on top of the the broadest and deepest financial system by far on the planet. And so, if we can build up, it’s firstly getting built on a theorem other other protocols are doing some things around the edges or connecting into a theorem to avail themselves of the defy protocols. Once that matures, then it will serve as a massive magnet on which no other aspects of the economy will be built.

Jamie Burke 21:21
I’ve heard you describe kind of one of the outcomes of the goals, outcomes, or goals with it as granular governance or carbon improve local lesson in the effectiveness of governance. And recently, I saw you did a tweet, I think it’s at the beginning of COVID, which was effectively saying, to quote, as builders of decentralised systems had hoped we’d have more time before the world hit another crisis of the scale. But as a legacy economies enter the zombie like days, we can accelerate a brave new world. So do you also kind of find part of the motivation? On the one hand, you know, you’re from the existing financial system? You work with it through consensus? But do you find what you’re doing almost as a form of protest, as well as software as a protest?

Joseph Lubin 22:07
So I definitely don’t think of it as a form of protest, creative expression, perhaps, and mostly technological innovation. So the internet protocols developed and on top of those web protocols developed a web one protocols web two protocols, so it’s sort of people standing on the shoulders of giants, building something with more functionality or building something better. Web three protocols decentralised protocols for trusted transactions, automated agreements, like on Ethereum payments, decentralised or distributed storage, decentralised identity, decentralised heavy computation, decentralised bandwidth, all of those things will be incorporated as part of the World Wide Web, enabling us to build a an increasingly decentralised, worldwide web. So that that’s just evolution to me, certainly, there was an element of protest in the Satoshi white paper, and I guess, advancement is the dialectic. So you get somewhere and you realise, hey, it’s not the perfect the ultimate system and and you figure out ways to either fix it iteratively or try something new, explore the solution space over in this corner and see that, you know, maybe, you know, getting back to AI terminology, maybe you’ve found a local man here in the energy surface. But over here, you you do some experimentation in there, and there’s lots, lots more to explore. And you can build much better systems. People complain a lot in our ecosystem that, you know, it’s insufficient to subserve all the world’s use cases at scale, in September 2020. But again, it just has to be iterative, we need to try things and understand where they’re working and where they’re insufficient, where they’re insufficient, and in terms of scaling or usability. That’s where we know we can apply our efforts. And so that’s going to take a bunch of time to build sufficient infrastructure so that we can onboard more and more use cases. So we start with the lower hanging fruit like cryptocurrency payments, and we gradually get more and more capable and still really smart people build cool stuff on different layers that have been built up that enables what they do.

Jamie Burke 24:50
So as a first mover it’s a nice segue into course the much anticipated with him to come as a first mover How do you What are the benefits? And what are the downsides of that, you know, bringing new technology to market evolving an outlook.

Joseph Lubin 25:08
So, we were not first movers, we were early Movers. There were lots of movers over the last 10 years, I do think that over the last five or six years, things really got started as smart contracts became a thing, even before they are in there, there was a mix abos version of smart contracts. And there were some platforms that had sort of hardwired smart contracts, but not a virtual machine. So NXT enabled people to just change the whole platform and add some new functionality. And you could call that a smart contract. But I really feel like smart contracts, roughly came to prominence with a theorem. And so we’re five or six years in if terrariums early advantage is apparent in so many ways. One is a regulatory advantage. And that theorem, and Bitcoin arrived on the scene before regulators were watching. And so via different mechanisms, we were able to distribute our tokens broadly and equitably, which is critically important for the success of decentralised protocols like this. If you’re a great team right now, with a great technology unique and you have designs on being a layer one protocol, you really need massive decentralisation to claim that you’re a layer one protocol to claim that you’re a new trust Foundation, otherwise, you’re you’re kind of a pretty small platform, and potentially corruptible. And so we were fortunate enough to be able to frame our token as a utility token and get the excitement of the community of developers, entrepreneurs, users. A project right now, even if it’s excellent needs to incentivize its community to be excited about the token. And usually the way to do that is to say, hey, this token is going to appreciate by the agency of this group over here, by definition, that’s a security This is Matteo Libra, which is distribution Quadra lemma, but it’s not my, my construct. And so regulators are watching. So pretty much all the tokens need to be either introduced into the world in a convoluted fashion, or are really just going to be seen as securities so that they can’t be distributed broadly, negatively. They are being called VC coins. I’ll Sorry, sorry, Jamie, or,

or professor coins and

Jamie Burke 27:52
was named in that as well.

Joseph Lubin 27:54
Yeah, or worse names for that. And we’ve seen, we’ve seen that some good projects, really good teams, have struggled to really establish themselves as sizable projects. So the the new projects are really quite small. Still, compared to a theorem in Bitcoin and the theorem, ecosystem developer core is just so much bigger, and so much faster moving and is drawing so much talent, especially DeFi. DeFi is a massive boat. The theorem has now so you build this thing that looks like it’s a trust foundation. It’s not sufficiently big or sufficiently decentralised, to really put all the world’s wealth on it right now. But it’s, it’s growing, to make that potentially possible at some point in the future. Once you have something that looks attractive like that, then you you attract the people that think, Hey, we can build a new financial infrastructure on top of that foundation. And so the liquidity in terms of value that’s on the platform that draws in more liquidity it draws in the best and the brightest. So we’ve got the best and the brightest building out at the protocol layer. And so that early mover advantage for a theorem is just an astonishingly large advantage. For consensus. We have an early mover advantage also in that we built some of the foundational components in our ecosystem. So whether it’s a theorem client, so called quorum or whether it’s in Fira infrastructure that powers many billions of transactions and, and other things other than transactions like reads that an application needs to do. Whether it’s started, codify tooling, middleware, and a bunch of different components or meta mask that currently has about one and a quarter million users in both the web version And the mobile version, those projects, especially having coalesced into a blockchain stack and evolving into a blockchain operating system, have set us up as a platform, effectively or a set of platforms. And being a platform in the space gives us the advantage, essentially, of an infrastructure provider. And so we can relatively agilely observe what’s going on in the space like the DeFi space and, and put out a service. So impure does that regularly. They’re going live with a bunch of things, tune some things around gas, some things around decentralised storage, or distributed storage. Meta mask is going live very soon, with the pretty exciting service in the DeFi space, and we’ll follow that with a handful of other exciting services.

Jamie Burke 30:59
So with these two, you mentioned DeFi, and that there’s kind of this love hate relationship or dynamic between DeFi and Ethereum and Ethereum and DeFi, because it’s just so dominant.

Joseph Lubin 31:11
Can you explain that a love hate relationship between d fi that’s built on it there? And, yeah, and so what’s the third?

Jamie Burke 31:19
Yes. What’s interesting is, is if you speak to people in DeFi, you know, they’re Of course frustrations. But it’s not truly democratised because of gas prices. On on the other hand, you have people that aren’t interested in the experimentation that’s happening in DeFi. And frustrated those kind of clogging the network.

Joseph Lubin 31:42
Sure, so that’s like saying that I have a love hate relationship with my modem in 1989. Which is true. With Fitbit, very good point. But I love my modem because it enabled a whole new world that I could explore and experiment in built in. And I think we need to understand that technologists are always bumping up against the ceilings. So for many decades of the development of the information technology world, hardware developers and software developers have built amazing new things, you know, doubled the speed and size every very short period of time. But the software developers and other hardware developers are always poised to max out the available memory, or CPU or bandwidth or screen size or transactions per second. And so we’re going to see that we’re going to see, all of these decentralised protocols be somewhat disappointing to people who choose to be disappointed by them for years or decades, just because we’re going to want to onboard more and more complex use cases. You know, when we start trying to do AI related things, or big data related things, that touch on blockchain systems, it’s going to get even worse. And so what we do need is to keep building to keep bumping up against many different feelings. Because those ceilings basically show us how we fail or how we get maxed out, it shows us exactly where we can apply our attention and grow the system or the system more capable. And we’re, we’ve seen that dynamic evolve beautifully in the FM space and other blockchain spaces. We’ve had a bunch of layer two solutions being developed and iterated improved. Several of them are online right now, several more are coming online, if theorem to itself is effectively a new from scratch technology that respects that tier one and will soon onboard a theorem one into a theorem to creating a pretty smooth evolution between the theorem one technology and and its upgrade a theorem two. So it, it seems to be a natural dance, ideally, towards continuous improvement.

Jamie Burke 34:40
So let’s talk a little bit about what you’re doing at consensus, because of course, you know, defies just one part of that you do I’ve at least heard you in the past referred to generally as financialization. So I understand it’s kind of as more of a spectrum anywhere between sci fi and DeFi. Could you talk about Some of the areas where you’re seeing the most innovation happen and perhaps elaborate on that spectrum of everything from cbdc, central bank, digital currencies all the way through to the more exotic end of DeFi.

Joseph Lubin 35:15
So I think I use the term finance specialisation pretty narrowly. So if you have a certain decentralised protocol, then you could run it, and it would work fine in a in a certain context where everybody is trusted. But if he wants to bring it into a bigger context, where a Byzantine context where there are actors that aren’t trusted, or they don’t know, then you have to create mechanisms like consensus mechanisms that facilitate trust. In in that context, financialization to me, refers to creating tokens of value that can be used to, or incentivization mechanisms to enable mechanism design. So you’re rewarding people for sharing their resources or behaving in certain ways on different kinds of protocols. consensus has a lot going on. So we’ve got a bunch going on, in defy decentralised finance, we’ve got a lot going on, on enterprise usages of the theorem technology. And we’re seeing convergence. Increasingly, we started with this notion of convergence. We called it our convergence thesis or richins hypothesis. And that’s really why we started early on building tools for the public permissionless main net, their main net, but also whenever we could, applying those tools, the theorem client decentralised applications, wallets, etc, into contexts that were private and permissioned. Because we felt that just like the internet and web technologies, all these protocols, these technologies need to mature in terms of usability and the scalability and privacy and confidentiality. To enable more companies back in, in the web, web, one era, web two era to make use of those technologies, companies in in the 80s.

were much more comfortable, or sorry, in

in the 90s were much more comfortable on intranets. And

Unknown Speaker 37:49

Joseph Lubin 37:50
for companies right now for more legacy economy companies. That’s where they are. They’re building private permission systems. And we’ve built a bunch with companies or Webkinz tortilla. What we’re seeing now is with DeFi, with other kinds of applications, with a protocol called baseline that we built in collaboration with Ernst and Young. We’re seeing mechanisms that will enable legacy organisations to get comfortable putting some sort of functionality or some sorts of use cases on public main net, a theorem. And so with baseline companies can keep their information perfectly secure on their side of the firewall. And through zero knowledge proof techniques, they can think up agreements, keep them in sync in real time or think of business processes. They can tokenize elements of business processes, so tokenize the money that’s used in payments tokenize the commodities that are that are traded tokenize, the invoices that represent some aspect of that business process, fractionalized invoices, securitized things. And so we’re going to see a very exciting convergence between sort of the legacy world and the pure, public permissionless world, I think of it as revolutionaries getting out ahead and showing what’s possible. And then evolutionary is following relatively closely and, and sort of fitting those new capabilities into what they need and ideally coming up with new ways of doing business or interacting.

Jamie Burke 39:39
So there’s another form of convergence, which we share, which is this idea of convergence of blockchain and AI. I know you guys were big contributors to the EU blockchain forum and you published a paper on the convergence of blockchain AI. And to circle back to the topic that I asked you at the beginning your kind of background in there. space. So, do you think that the PFI money Lego needs AI Lego? And how, how will that play out?

Joseph Lubin 40:10
So I think there’s a really rich potential intersection between the two domains. AI. As I said earlier, ai requires a tremendous amount of data. And it has to the concern of some turned into what could be considered an arms race. And so if you have access to enormous amounts of data and enormous amounts of computation, you can

do a pretty astonishing things, either as a state

Jamie Burke 40:41
or platform, right?

Joseph Lubin 40:43
Yes, so whether it’s the NSA in the United States or China government, or Facebook or Google or potentially some other projects, they have enormous advantages we saw recently with the GPT three, the kind of magic that that could occur and and what appears to be the kind of conceptual learning to generalisation mechanisms that can be built strictly from data strictly from internet based or internet acquired data. And so it would be wonderful. If this arms race, which is not going to end and or stop in any way, there’s no way to stop that sort of innovation. But it would be wonderful if it was a broader, fairer, flatter, playing field. And I think we can do that I think we can get to the point where people understand that their data is valuable. And you can incentivize people to protect better their financial information, their medical information, or just know the signals that are streaming off their lives off their bodies all day long. These things can be collected can be formed in two different feeds can be stored in large corpuses. Projects like ipfs, and file coin are configured right now to facilitate the handling the storage and handling and usage of Massive Datasets. And if we can turn that data into commodities, that can be traded fluidly for value for lots of people, it enables people to either go out and take pictures or or collect other information and monetize it. And the way to facilitate that is to build data markets. If we have data markets, and if people understand that certain kinds of data are very valuable, as opposed perhaps, to these more superficial stuff that Facebook might easily collect, if if we have mechanisms like self sovereign identity, and personal data lockers, such that we can interact with applications without giving up

too much

personal information. And we can use our personal information. And we can D identify it and share it with a research study or get commercial benefit from it by sharing it with somebody who’s willing to pay us for it to use in their classifier or, or to have us interact with something so that they can add metadata and improve with the data. These sorts of mechanisms can enable us to create a platform that can facilitate very broad competition in the AI space. So if we can make these oceans of data broadly accessible, and help people understand that, that’s where your data should go, and that you should have full granular control over how it’s used how you allocate access to it. I think we will have a much healthier, evolving context for AI. And you pretty much need blockchain for that you need to to tokenize and have fair systems and you need things like self sovereign identity, which massively benefits from from blockchain.

Jamie Burke 44:50
Joe, that was almost the perfect segue into the next panel, which is basically about features or one project called swash app, which is the world’s first data union plus browsing data to and from brave and stuff like that. So, Joe, it’s been a real pleasure to finally get that one on one with you. Thanks so much for your time. Thanks so much, Jeff. If you enjoyed today’s podcast please make sure you subscribe rate and share your feedback to help us reach as many people as possible with important mission of web three.