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Addressing the question of trust and blockchains requires to remember the context in which Satoshi Nakamoto’s white paper was issued in December 2008 : it was a few months after the subprime crisis and the fall of Lehman Brothers, at a time when the trust in people was extremely challenged, both in their ability to process numbers without mistake, as well as their tendency to operate behind others back. It was a time where libertarians would trust machines and distrust people.
In a way, The Economist « The Trust Machine » could be interpreted as « trust the machines / distrust the middle people »
The challenge of introducing the topic in 10 min is a huge one, as both trust and blockchains are very flexible and often misunderstood notions.
We have covered many facets of trust across yesterday including trust in the future epitomised by our past icons Igor & Grichka. Still, the essence of trust does rely not in technology but in people first.
Professor Yuval Harari’s « Sapiens » essay is an inspiring and powerful reminder that what made mankind emerge from other species is its unsurpassed ability to cooperate at large scale, and with remote strangers.
Trust is the core enabler for cooperation and applies to people as well as actions.