Tauchain 101: Essential Reading On One Of The Most Revolutionary Blockchain Project Under The Radar...By Rok Sivante. Published on Steemit. August 3, 2018.
Amidst countless blockchain projects hyping themselves up as "the next big thing," there are a few that have been working under the radar that hold the promise - not in word, but in substance - of truly being revolutionary game-changers.
Such ventures have not yet often come into the spotlight. Partly, due to that their founders have focused first on the fundamentals of creating something that speaks for itself versus the all-too-common approach of prioritizing sensationalistic marketing. And partly, because the degree of innovativeness they represent - in tandem with a complexity in scope of the larger visions and implications of their success - does not always lend itself to an easy understanding upfront.
One such project - still very early on in its development, yet holding transformative potentials no less grand than those of Bitcoin and Ethereum as they birthed and evolved the blockchain landscape:
Until recently, with the launch of a new website that has successfully managed to articulate the project's vision much more clearly, understanding what Tauchain is striving to accomplish was a domain only a very few, highly-intelligent technically-inclined dared to tread. And prior to December 2018, there was no code - only an unproven concept spearheaded by a single Israeli developer, Ohad Asor, whom nearly all who've managed to connect with have declared to be one of the most brilliant geniuses they've ever met, possibly ahead of his time.
Just as Bitcoin introduced blockchain as an innovation radically altering the trajectory of our societal, economic, and technological evolution - and Ethereum continued in suit with its upgrades to expand in developing upon the vision with entirely new sets of capabilities for developing a range of decentralized applications and smart contracts - so too, may Tauchain be such a platform whose success proves comparable, the impact of which may bring quantum leaps in the Blockchain Revolution.
How and where to start in describing Tauchain...?
Well, were we to begin with the technical side of things, it'd be likely to lose 98% of the audience. So perhaps, a better starting point might be the bigger picture:
This generalized overview, however, still only barely scratches the surface.
While the intended ends may be that of a generic concept enabling drastically-increased efficiency in global collaboration, the means by which such is to be achieved entails a number of innovative component developments that each hold great significance and implications of their own.
While each may require deeper exploration to better grasp and begin piecing together into the bigger picture, the Tauchain website now offers an overview of key features which account for just some of what it to differentiate it from other blockchain platforms - and enable new collaborative capabilities not currently possible with currently existing technologies:
While it'd be possible to expand upon each in great detail - both in regards to the functionality and implications for their applications - this particular piece of writing is to serve as a basic introduction to some of the best, most-easily-accessible content written on Tauchain to-date.
And as we transition into that content, we shall begin with a quote summarizing the core essence of Tauchain, as approached from but one angle:
This project created by Ohad Asor is really ambitious and aims to create the internet of knowledge.
Some people would label it as an Artificial Intelligence, but according to the creator this is something totally different. Summing up and to understand me, Tau-chain is a tool that knows how to interpret any information and deduce any consensus. This tool can be used in any field, judicial, political, academic, social, scientific and also without limits assembly from 2 people to a million for example.
~ @capitanart, from "My experience with Tau-chain"
The collection begins with two selections from Steemit's @trafalgar.
If anyone has successfully managed to distill the essence of the Tauchain vision into words that'd serve as a foundational Tauchain 101 intro, it'd have been him in these two excellent pieces:
What Is Tau? - My Only Other Crypto Investment
The Power of Tau - Scaling the Creation of Knowledge
Next, come three short articles from @flis, which may not go into any new details beyond the three above, yet offer a slightly different yet simplified perspective to reinforce the clarification of Tauchain's key concepts:
The vision of Tau-Chain, a blockchain based self-amending platform designed to scale human collaboration and knowledge building
How Tau-Chain can be implemented in practice
Tau Chain vs. Tezos - which platform will provide a better solution?
~ design credit: @voronoi
Next, come a few selections from @dana-edwards, who has likely been the single individual who has translated the highly-complex technical vision of Ohad Asor into a more-approachable nature from which non-academics may begin and better understanding a Tauchain.
Quite possibly the first to write of developments and share outside of the project’s IRC channel and Bitcoin talk thread, Dana has one of the most comprehensive grasps publicized anywhere on the project, and his writings continue to serve in establishing bridges for more people to discover and deepen their own comprehensions of the innovations Tauchain represents to not only computer science and the blockchain revolution, but cultural & societal evolution as well.
What follows are a collection of his writings related to the project which excellently piece together key ideas and insights, from which the gaps may be filled in to grasp a firmer idea of just how significant these developments could be and what the bigger picture of their success might look like:
What Tauchain can do for us: Collaborative Serious Alternate Reality Games
What Tauchain can do for us: Finding the world's biggest problems
Tauchain: The automated programmer
Artificial morality: Moral agents and Tauchain
What Tauchain can do for us: Effective Altruism + Tauchain
Collaborative Alternate Reality Games + Tauchain = UBAs (Universal Basic Assets)?
Tauchain and Tezos, why adaptability is the key to surviving in a fast changing environment
My commentary on Ohad's latest blog post: "Agoras to TML"
The following three pieces are not introductory-level, and may likely require a background in computer programming to understanding. However, for anyone reading who might be interested in diving deeper into the technical side of the project, they are included here:
Tauchain is not easy to understand but here are some concepts to know to track Ohad's progress
For all who are researching Tauchain (TML) to understand how it works, a nice video!
More on partial evaluation - How does partial evaluation work and why is it important?
~ design credit: @crypticalias
One other writer covering Tauchain needing to be mentioned: @karov.
While not the easiest to read and understand, the Steemit account of Georgi Karov is undoubtedly one of the most consistent sources of coverage on the project.
A lawyer by-trade and currently one of the three members of the core team, @karov's insights into the project are reliably detailed, expansive into philosophical territory, and fascinating.
Although none of his articles have been included in this introductory collection, those who may be interested to keep up-to-date with coverage on the project would be well-advised to follow his Steemit blog - and/or read backwards through the last few months of his posts there, as the blog is nearly-entirely Tauchain-related content.
Lastly, though not least:
Coming from one of Steemit's most brilliant early-adopter-minds, @kevinwong, this one is a quick read in itself with some key points worth factoring in to a proper assessment of the project. And - far lengthier than the post itself - the comments thread also contains some gold:
Is Tauchain Agoras in Good Hands?
And to wrap up with another excellent quotes from design consultant to the project, @capitanart - who is another to follow for updates:
The goal of Tau is to create a supermind, to solve the limitations inherent in human communication on a large scale.
Able to deduce consensus and understand discussions, Tau can generate and execute code automatically based on consensus, through a process known as code synthesis. This will greatly accelerate the production of knowledge and streamline most of the large-scale collaborative efforts we can imagine in today's world.
~ design credit: @overdye
The Power of Tau - Scaling the Creation of Knowledge. By Trafalgar. Posted on Steemit. December 31, 2017.
Ohad Asor, creator of Tau Chain/Agoras, has recently published the long awaited blog post detailing his vision for what very likely is the most ambitious project in the crypto space: Tau.
Tau will accelerate human endeavors by overcoming long ingrained limitations in our collaborative processes; limitations which we rarely even question.
The Problem of Social Governance
Take social governance, for example. As individuals, we have opinions over a wide variety of social issues. Perhaps you feel that the speed limit on certain roads is too high, or that programming should be a compulsory subject at public schools, or that everyone would benefit if cryptocurrencies were officially recognized and endorsed by the state.
However, you have no idea how to get these concerns across to the general public. I mean you could try writing a letter to your local representative or signing a petition but ultimately that's unlikely to gain much traction. Meanwhile, the very same issues that seems to have divided the nation over the past decade remain at the forefront of our political debate. Immigration, climate change, abortion, gun control etc. are all important issues of course, but very little progress have been made considering the amount of time, resources and attention that have been devoted to them.
So the problem with traditional forms of social governance, such as democratic voting, is apparent: on the one hand it has difficulty identifying and addressing the wide range of opinions different people hold, on the other hand, even with respect to the small number of issues that do end up bubbling up to the surface, it isn't particularly efficient at detecting consensus.
The central cause of this problem is that current modes of discussion are not scalable. There are inherent limitations in the way we're able to communicate our views across to each other; namely, human ability to comprehend and organize information is the main bottleneck. We cannot possible follow multiple conversations at once, or recall everyone's propositions once there are more than a handful of people in the mix. This is why most collaborative decision making bodies in practice are generally quite small in number: the President's cabinet, Supreme Court Justices, boardroom directions of a fortune 100 company etc.; you just can't have a productive discussion with 50 people. Our entire civilization is structured around this very limitation: discussions don't scale.
Scaling Collaborative Discussions Under Tau
Imagine if we can overcome this limitation; what will it mean for social governance? By using a self defining, decidable logic, the Tau network is easily able to keep track of every user's propositions and detect consensus automatically. Note that making a proposition is exactly the same as voting for that very same proposition: when you're proposing 'dogs should always be on a leash in public unless in a park' you're in effect putting in a vote for such a proposition. This way, countless issues, regardless of how technical or niche, can be assessed through the network concurrently, and social consensus can be detected on the fly. The Tau network can scale social governance by overcoming one of the greatest limitation in human communication of ideas by delegating the task of logically making sense of everybody's propositions to the computer. A simple use case of this will be the rules of the Tau network itself: through a self defining logic, Tau is able to detect consensus among its users from block to block, altering its own rules to conform to the choices of the user base.
The benefits of scaling discussions are not limited to just a more efficient form of social governance. Logic isn't merely about detecting surface level consensus, the network can easily form further deductions from everyone's propositions. If one states 'all men are mortal' and 'Socrates is a man', one can deduce that 'Socrates is mortal.' But deductions can be very deep and non trivial. Imagine if we had a group of 1000 mathematicians all inputting their mathematical insight as propositions. Tau can rapidly detect who agrees with whom on what, and deduce every logical consequence of their combined wisdom; in effect arriving to new truths and insights. In other words, Tau greatly accelerates the production of new knowledge. This will, of course, also work if you have physicists, doctors, engineers, computer scientists, indeed experts in every field working together on the platform. By scaling collaborative discussions in a logical network, Tau is able to scale the creation of knowledge.
When Tau comes into effect, any company, government, and indeed any organization not using this new network will be rendered obsolete. Tau aims to become an indispensable technology.
And this is only the alpha of Tau.
I will talk about the beta in a future posts. The beta will revolve around not just the scaling of discussions and consensus, but the automation and execution of code based of the results of those discussion. For more information on code synthesis and more, please read Ohad's blog. Also, do check out my introduction to Tau here if you missed it.
You can invest in Tau through buying Agoras tokens on Bittrex.
I am not affiliated or paid by the project. These represent my own subjective views. Tau/Agoras is the only other crypto project apart from Steem in which I see an extraordinary future, and I am merely sharing that with fellow Steemians here.
Ohad Asor's New Tau Blog
IRC Chat: Where you may ask Ohad himself technical questions
Tau Chinese QQ Group: 203884141
Something Revolutionary In the Crypto Space.
The overwhelming majority of new crypto projects out there fall into 3 main categories:
Now the trillion dollar question is this: is just having a currency or shoving a Turing Complete programming language into the blockchain to allow for smart contracts truly the best use of this decentralized innovation? Ohad Asor, creator and lead developer of Tau, does not think so.
What Is Tau?
Before I start I have to make a confession: I don't truly understand Tau. But I feel that I don't understand it slightly less than people who don't know about it at all, so I'll have a go at explaining it.
Tau is a platform that is designed to scale human collaboration and knowledge building.
Almost every significant piece of technology to date (that isn't about accelerating physical labor) has been primarily focused on the disseminating information or data. The wheel, roads, telephones, the internet are all indispensable achievements that have served to aid getting information from A to B.
But the real value isn't in the data itself, it's from the organization of the information within that data into useful knowledge. While the mere distribution of information is an important step to scaling human progress, it's also only part of the picture. The next step has typically been up to us, the human actors, to use our little brains to distill that information manually until we produce knowledge;
Tau is the first piece of serious technology that is aimed to not only automate the collection of information, but also the production of knowledge, unless you count Netflix's 'AI' recommending 'The Human Centipede' after your toddler has just watched 'A Bug's Life', as successful knowledge discovery made by a machine. Tau is about the industrialization of knowledge creation via taking some of the burden of logical reasoning from us humans and giving it to the machine.
What Can Tau Do?
Ohad has spent years researching and developing Tau. The design is centered around creating a self defining, decidable logic that is expressible under pspace (which is mathematically shown to be the most expressive any self defining and decidable language can be), that will act as a metalanguage for all programming languages defined under Tau.
A trivial example of what this can directly lead to is secure smart contracts. Smart contracts operating under Tau cannot ever give rise to something like the DAO hack - decidable programming languages means one can anticipate the entire spectrum of possible consequences of the code before running it, allowing us to avoid anything unintended. But reliable and secure smart contracts are only a tiny fraction of what the platform can truly offer.
The power of Tau's design will allow it to boast some truly wondrous features including:
Ohad has yet to fully explain how this will be achieved, but by far the most difficult part is creating the initial decidable, self defining logic system that serves as a metalanguage. Many had their doubts but yesterday Ohad announced that the first and most difficult step towards this end has been achieved. The code he has written is a working version of the Tau Meta Language which correctly computed a transitive closure graph. This is a proof of concept of the great things to come!
Now that the initial code is released, Ohad is working on a set of explanations about Tau which will outline it's features and how it'll be able to achieve them in more detail. Tau is notoriously difficult to explain, but it's definitely worth the effort to understand it. I'll keep you updated when his explanations are released.
Who Is The Lead Developer Ohad Asor?
Ohad Asor is a programmer, computer scientist, mathematician and logician from Israel. He attended university at the age of 13 and has extensive experience (30+ years) in programming and mathematics.
Most people know me as the clown on here who just writes jokes along the lines of taking his mom to the prom after his cousin rejected him or some shit, but I sat my university entrance exams at 16 and scored in the top 0.5% of Australian Tertiary Admissions Rank and took a prestigious course at a well known university. I only bring this up to show that I've had no shortage of dealings with what ordinarily would be considered to be extremely intelligent people, but Ohad is on a completely different level.
Ohad Asor is, quite frankly, the most intelligent and knowledgeable person with whom I've ever interacted. There are many geniuses and child prodigies out there, but Ohad has spent virtually every minute of his waking moments studying up until this point in his life, and he likely has an IQ of over 5 standard deviations above the mean to begin with. I have spoken to him and followed his project over the past 8 months, and my assessment and admiration of his abilities has only increased over this time period.
Here is a short video of him explaining the old design of Tau and some of its features. The information is dated as the new design is far superior, but these features remain.
English is Ohad's second language - His native language is C.
How Do I Invest In Tau?
Tau itself has no tokens but Ohad is also building Agoras, the first automated marketplace over the Tau collaborative platform. Agoras tokens are currently traded on Bittrex. It has one of the fairest distributions in the cryptosphere and Ohad is only reserving 3% of the tokens for himself. None of that 20% for the founders, 10% for the developers, 20% for the foundation, 15% for the founders' penis enlargement fund bullshit.
Agoras has made considerable gains over the last few weeks but it's total market cap is still under 100 million at the time of writing, which, to me, represents an incredible opportunity for something potentially revolutionary. If we woke up tomorrow without Bitcoin, things would more or less continue as they did, but if we woke up tomorrow without electricity, the world would be an entirely different place. Indeed Tau aims to be the latter: a truly indispensable piece of technology, which is a status that no crypto project has yet reached.
This article isn't to be taken as investment advice any more than it is to be construed as advice on how to get out of the friend zone without resorting to chloroform. I'm not affiliated nor paid by the Tau team in any way. I have not made a single crypto recommendation in my 8 months of being here until now. I just wanted to share something that I think has immense potential to be truly revolutionary, and it also happens to be the only other crypto investment I hold other than Steem.
Feel free to ask some questions after and I'll try my best to answer them.
Special thanks to @dana-edwards and the Steemit platform for allowing me to discover this project
Tau QQ Group Number: 203884141
IRC for technical questions only, Ohad will generally reply within a day
Logo by CapitanArt
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Logo by CapitanArt
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Suggested readings to better understand the Tau ecosystem, Tau Meta Language, Tau-Chain and Agoras, and collaborate in the development of the project.
Lecturas sugeridas para entender mejor el ecosistema Tau, Tau Meta Lenguaje, Tau-Chain y Agoras, y colaborar en el desarrollo del proyecto.