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What does it mean to trust cryptographically?

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When it comes to Trust, is the path consensus? In crypto, trust has been one of the pillars alongside decentralization and immutability. Without trust the two cannot be efficient alone. Trust is essentially the pillar to both decentralization and immutability.

Now when looking at the dynamics of trust in crypto. The use of consensus has been established to garner the cohesiveness within orchestrating and validating transactions on a distributed ledger. From the advent of proof of work many other forms of proofs has been established, such as the more efficient, scalable and low energy, proof of stake.

Now the questions I have been struggling to understand is: 1) Is consensus the only way to garner trust within distributed ledger technology? 2)What is the base layer for trust to be present in the long term in a decentralized system?

To have consensus there must be a collective of trust with the same mission and goals that are aligned between all parties to reach true consensus towards ownership.

Let me present to you this case.

When thinking of fiat USD. The trust in the United States government has long been the currency’s primal basis of trust knowing that the government will work for its people and serve its constituents. Now that wasn’t always the case because prior to August 15, 1971, president Richard Nixon removed the Gold Standard. Basically, the dollar could no longer be exchanged for a fixed value of gold and vice versa. This forever changed the land scape of the monetary policy in the United States. Now the system is upheld by trust of the Federal Reserve. A centralized authority. The goals being to” first, maximum employment; and second, stable prices, meaning low, stable inflation… a third, lesser-known goal of moderate long-term interest rates”. The supremacy Is within the shared values of the laws and regulations and systems put in place that all have come to consensus on and that is how the monetary system functions within the United States. “Confidence in commercial bank money is built upon deposit insurance, banks' access to central bank liquidity, and banking regulation and supervision”

But I would like to add a layer that most goes unseen.

Where exactly does this knowing derive from?

What is the base layer for this trust?

My answer, faith or in other words it could be described as confidence.

But I will continue with the use of the word faith.

Yes, the idea of faith.

Faith in the system; faith in the laws; faith in the institutions.

Think about it, most consensus that is done based off trust is founded on the base layer of faith.

When it comes to nodes, validators or any of the interesting mechanism used to stamp transactions on a DLT. Trust, ultimately faith must be imminent for all parties to recognize transactions as correct. Now the goal of crypto is to create a mathematically function of this without the need of a centralized party who carries the last validation.

Bitcoin being the first to prove this concept. But has it really worked out to be truly decentralized? I would argue no. Because now the mining pools who were the validators are less decentralized than what it initially started out to be.

In conclusion, trust pillared on faith simultaneously being decentralized is by and large one of the hardest mechanisms to perform within the DLT industry. And quite frankly it doesn’t seem as though having full decentralization and trust (ultimately faith of a system long term) can function well in a cryptographical sense. I could be wrong and there might be a way without ultimately leading back to centralization, but I don’t currently see it. In the age digital transformation, the push away from intermediaries might not be exactly what becomes accomplished.

I’d like to hear your thoughts and opinions, below.


submitted by /u/Usual_Dealer9641
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