The Computing Commons


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The Computing Commons

Imagining the future of society empowered through blockchain technology.

About the Book

The blockchain: it is the smart, distributed ledger that allows any participant to come to consensus on the state of information without requiring an intermediary. It’s been called “consensus computers” & “trust machines”. They come in many forms (Bitcoin, Ethereum & private ones). Whatever platform succeeds (one or many) will leave society with a vast, distributed, public computer. It’s memory will be our shared, unchangeable historical record, and its power will allow us to forge new relationships with each other and with our technology. It is giving rise to the computing commons.

This book will cover everything from free & fast finance up to AI & simulated, alternate realities.

The current version on Leanpub is a complete work in progress. You will find it disjointed and have notes I made to myself strewn throughout it ((like these double brackets)). Last updated: 31st October 2015.

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About the Editor

Simon de la Rouviere
Simon de la Rouviere

Simon builds decentralised applications for use in the music industry, online communities and the developing world. He has been in the Bitcoin/blockchain space since 2011, developed a decentralised band around a full blown cryptocurrency, and is writing a book on the blockchain. He previously worked on research into the design & maintenance of online communities (earning a Master of Arts, cum laude, in Socio-Informatics from Stellenbosch University in South Africa) & was a member of the MIH Media Lab, one of the premier multi-disciplinary post-graduate research labs in Africa. Before getting into blockchains, he created 2 successful side-projects ( & TwimeMachine) used by more than a million people. has sent more than 30 million updates to social media platforms over its existence. When he is not developing new technology, he is a musician by night.

More information can be found here:

Twitter: @simondlr.


Table of Contents

  • A Work in Progress
  • Prologue
  • Introduction
  • Decentralized Finance
    • Remittance
    • P2P Lending
    • Micropayments
    • Altcoins
    • Sidechains
    • Financial Smart Contracts
    • Payment Plugins
    • Decentralized Finance
  • Decentralized Property
    • Equity
    • Tokens
    • A state of reality
    • Decentralized Storage
    • Decentralizing DNS
    • Verifying Information.
    • Conclusion
  • Decentralized Trade
    • Silk Road
    • OpenBazaar
    • A protocol for trade: a decentralized sharing economy.
    • More blockchains
    • Decentralized Trade
  • Decentralized & Distributed Organisations
    • Decentralized vs Distributed
    • Rethinking Organisations
    • Tenets
    • Appcoins
    • Non-token DAOs
    • Why DAOs?
    • Bootstrapping DAOs
    • Changing DAOs
  • Decentralized Agents
    • Blockchain in AI
    • Narrow AI
    • The Emergent AI
    • Sensing as a Service
    • A Blueprint for a decentralized AI
    • AI & Natural Systems
    • A Dangerous Experiment?
  • Decentralized Law
  • Decentralized Realities
    • Digital Money
    • Blockchains as Reality Mediators
    • Augmented Reality
    • Conclusion
    • Conclusion
    • Empathy
    • The machines?
    • The story

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