A protocol moves much more slowly than a platform. After 30+ years, email is still unencrypted; meanwhile WhatsApp went from unencrypted to full e2ee in a year. People are still trying to standardize sharing a video reliably over IRC; meanwhile, Slack lets you create custom reaction emoji based on your face.
This isn’t a funding issue. If something is truly decentralized, it becomes very difficult to change, and often remains stuck in time. That is a problem for technology, because the rest of the ecosystem is moving very quickly, and if you don’t keep up you will fail. There are entire parallel industries focused on defining and improving methodologies like Agile to try to figure out how to organize enormous groups of people so that they can move as quickly as possible because it is so critical.
When the technology itself is more conducive to stasis than movement, that’s a problem. A sure recipe for success has been to take a 90’s protocol that was stuck in time, centralize it, and iterate quickly.
but I think the whole thing is worth reading.
This is the first example (of oh-so-many) of how people are talking about so-called web3.
What are your thoughts? How do we talk about how OCaps and Spritely fit into this space?
I spead read through this article of Moxies and frankly I am not impressed by his writing.
The thing is that people will gladly run servers. The main issue is people do not want to administer servers, keeping them up to date and patched and all that jazz. Plug and play ones? Heck some have deployed such accidentially.
He is bit right about protocols getting ossified and unchangeing.
There is a good reason for that.
As a lower level a protocol is the less it should change.
Due to the fact that most software devs are terrified of mobile code (or near mobile code) the highest level of protocols change too fast for an diverse community of protocol implementers to keep up.
But he is also right about software making taking enormus effort. I hold forth that is mostly due to most of the ‘havktivation’ energy going into getting brittle dev and build environments going. The other factor there is the lack of expressiveness of some of the programming languages used, their clunkyness of composition, and inclarity/vagueness of domain spefic concepts arising from unfinished or yet-to-be-decided formulations.
(besides Moxie got quite enamoured by Intel SGX without, seemingly, having reviewed the extensive literature on TrustedExecutionEnvironments used in say JavaCard, Conax smartcards, etc that explictly state why SecureElements must not share their core resources with hosts execution cores. Even though he should have had incling of the existence of such literature from cryptographic literature. So his opinion is worth a bit above meh but not that much)
This is key. As clients “thicken” in web browsers they become more server-like. The Agency just embraces this trend. So much UI work will be about appropriately exposing/managing “administrative-like” functions so they aren’t overwhelming, but feel as natural as possible.