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Re: [GNUnet-developers] Another bunch of ideas

From: Igor Wronsky
Subject: Re: [GNUnet-developers] Another bunch of ideas
Date: Mon, 14 Jul 2003 19:33:23 +0300 (EEST)

On Mon, 14 Jul 2003, Steven Barker wrote:

> inclined to implement them).  I hope you'll take these suggestions as
> ideas to consider and debate,

Ok, I'm perhaps the most pessimistic and simple-minded of the
whole bunch, but here goes anyway... don't let these little
comments depress you. ;)

> * Challenge-Response-Confirmation support in the trust economics code.
> My idea for how to get around this limitation is to augment the two message
> Query-Reply model with a three message Challenge-Response-Confirmation
> model.  The third message, the Confirmation will tell the nodes it reaches
> the validity of the Response.

In my limited understanding this method seems to be just as fragile
as any voting scheme (pardon me if the contrary was shown by your
credit-assignment scenario, I didn't read it with my brains on)
against 'tyranny of the masses'. That is, there is likely exist
such content in the anonymous system that is disliked by majority
or by a very resourceful (as in $$$) faction. Now the these
parties could use their resources to thwart the unwanted
content by inducing an order or ranking on the content matching
some particular key, in a way that the real content was always
at the bottom of that ranking (risking filtering etc), and
spam being at the top.

If, on the other hand, the weight or reliability of the
confirmation was calculated against the reputation of
the confirming party, there might be something there. That
is, if node A knows B and C to be 'baddies', and D a
goodie (relative, of course), then their confirmation
weights could be ranked somehow accordingly. Or
instead of nodes, maybe app level pseudonyms could
be used.

I don't claim it to be this simple. ;) But certainly
thinking every confirmation as equal leads into trouble.

> Now that A has the data it requested, it has to evalueate it.  This could be
> an automatic, application specific check (like, for example, determining if
> data is signed by a trusted identity),

Once the namespace mechanism is ready, it will handle the
signature issue without voting or confirmations. In a namespace,
everything is in a way 'signed' (transitively, at least),
though 'trust' only exists in the minds eye of the end
user. Spamming can not happen in namespaces except when
intended by the author who signed (owner of the space).
Unfortunately this still leaves the problem of where to
get good 'entry points'.

Oh, to cut it short, actually its quite similar to
the freenet SSK concept. :)

> * An Anonymous Distributed Computing framework.
> This is one application I had in mind when I was thinking about the trust
> accounting of Challenge-Response-Confirmation type messages.  For those of
> you who don't know, distributed computing is the name of a technique that
> solves computationally hard problems by exploiting algorithms that can run
> on massively parallel networks of machines.

You're careful leaving out what you'd use anonymous
distributed computation for. I think we'd be in for
trouble if, for example, there was a site claiming
'join the happy adventure of risk-free credit card
hacking and get 1/n of the profit!'. I mean, a p2p
concept can attack the profit margins of individual branches
of the industry, like the music industry, and maybe
get away with it on a free-speech excuse or such,
but if a p2p system enables you to attack economy or
banking (i.e. perform an "anarcho-communist assault
on our Capitalist Values, Country and GOD"), the big
brothers will pull down the whole network in a jiffy.
Only numbers could save you then, but we'd probably be
talking about hundreds of thousands of international
nodes - or more.

Just my opinion though.


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